State of the Union: New York and the Civil War
Three years ago, in celebration of the publication of The Union Preserved: A Guide to the Civil War Records in the New York State Archives, the New York State Archives Partnership Trust, a program of the New York State Education Department, held a two-day symposium featuring research by leading scholars on New York's role in the Civil War. The symposium brought together a broad spectrum of attendees from the Lincoln Forum, Civil War re-enactors, Civil War Roundtable members, students, local historians, educators, and history enthusiasts.
As the most populous state at the time of the Civil War, New York was central to winning the war. The state not only provided the most men and materiel, but was also the North's economic center as well as an important center of political and social activism. Inhabited by increasing numbers of immigrant groups, abolitionists, and an emerging free black community, New York's social and political environment was a microcosm of the larger social and political conflict being played out in the war. The symposium addressed these tensions by examining the role of women, blacks, Native Americans, and European immigrant groups in New York, particularly the various perspectives held by members of each group regarding the war effort.
The symposium examined the difficulties Abraham Lincoln faced in keeping New York favorable to his policies. It revealed the tremendous sacrifice New York made in the military campaign, as well as the treatment of Confederate soldiers at New York's Elmira Prison Camp. The State of the Union is a compilation of the papers presented at the symposium.
The essays included in the volume:
Housekeeping on Its Own Terms: Abraham Lincoln in New York, by Harold Holzer
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The Volcano Under the City The Significance of Draft Rioting in New York City and State July 1863
Whats Gender Got to Do With It? New York in the Age of Civil War
In the Shadow of American Indian Removal The Iroquois in the Civil War
Above the Law? Arbitrary Arrests Habeas Corpus and Freedom of the Press in Lincolns New York
Rebuttal Abraham Lincoln Civil Liberties and the New York ConnectionThe Corning Letter
New Yorks Andersonville The Elmira Military Prison
New York and the Impeachment of Andrew Johnson
Abraham Lincolns Letter to Erastus Corning and Other New York Democrats June 12 1863