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Yaller Gal – The Fortnightly Word

One of the things that keeps us from easily accessing primary sources is their language. Though documents from our past are in English, it's often a very different creation than we know now. I enjoy discovering and understanding words almost as much as I enjoy history. From time to time,

Using Fear of Racial Equality to Sell Secession

Before the Confederates fired upon Fort Sumter, even before Abraham Lincoln took office, the seven seceded states sent commissioners to the still-loyal slave states in the hopes of convincing them to join their fledgling Confederacy. They all said basically the same thing: the destruction of slavery and the equality of

Forgotten Heroes of Southern History: Ellen and William Craft – A Desperate Leap for Liberty

The escape to freedom by Ellen and William Craft is one of the most famous and daring stories of self-emancipation. Over the course of eight days, the newly-weds conceived of, planned and executed a brilliant plot to gain their liberty and find new lives for themselves. Since Ellen appeared to be nearly white, a plan was concocted that she would pose as William’s master, and together would make their way to the North and to freedom.

Black Codes as Slavery Forever

There are some Confederate apologists who claim that "If there had been no Civil War, the South would have abolished slavery peaceably." It would have simply died out because "paternalist planters would have arranged, over time, to emancipate their slaves in exchange for financial compensation." ((H.W. Crocker, III, The Politically

The Curiously Short History of Heritage Not Hate

It is the rallying cry heard from pro-Confederate activists all across the country - "Heritage, Not Hate!" With its steadfast persistence, one might be tempted to believe that it originated immediately after the Civil War, or perhaps during the Lost Cause era, the Centennial or even the Civil Rights movement.