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Ayers and Carolyn R. University of Virginia Press, Cloth, ISBN: At first glance, America on the Eve of the Civil War: A Virginia Sesquicentennial Signature Conference stands apart from most edited volumes both in aim and in organization. In other words, they were to discuss the various political, economic, social, and cultural issues associated with the coming of the Civil War without the knowledge that the war would, in fact, begin.

The esteemed panel participants represented a variety of historical approaches and interests and included Edward Ayers, who served as moderator throughout the conference, David Blight, Christy Coleman, Gary Gallagher, Walter Johnson, and Joan Waugh, among others. The panel discussions focused on Virginia and on Richmond in particular, though the themes and issues often encompassed larger southern and national concerns during the s.

Ultimately, the book addresses familiar historiographic debates—such as the state of slavery in the late antebellum period—with ease and tact. The harsh substitution of dismissal for acceptance of resignations arose from the trauma of civil war. As a result, resigning officers paid a high price for their divided loyalties. Lee was offered field command of the Union Army on April 18th, , while the Virginia Convention was still debating the issue of secession.

Lee declined, having already sensed the outcome of the secession vote. Shortly thereafter, General Winfield Scott, Commander-in-Chief, United States Army, advised Lee to resign since his views were incompatible with the high responsibilities of his rank. Lee did so on the 20th, was offered command of the forces of Virginia on the 21st, and on the 22nd he accepted, as was commonly expected.

See Douglas Southall Freeman, R. Lee: A Biography 4 vols. Captain David G. Farragut was born and raised in the South and he married a Norfolk girl. As Virginia's secession was being debated, he was awaiting orders in Norfolk. When he heard the outcome of the vote on April 18th, Farragut departed abruptly with his wife for New York.

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The timing and swiftness of his decision to move north allayed any lingering suspicions of his southern background. Almost every published work on the Civil War mentions the question of officer resignations from the Army and Navy, often giving more emphasis to those of the Army.

Usually a few familiar cases of officers who "went South" are presented with a total figure or proportion of resignations included, and then the author proceeds to other matters. John T. Scharfs classic History of the Confederate Navy New York, , deals more closely with the subject than do other studies, but his account is flavored with a southern accent and does not present a balanced view of the position of the Navy Department in Washington. An outline of these events can be found in U. John G. Joseph T. Durkin, S.

Why Was Cotton ‘King’?

Stephen R. George Melling, comp. Macartney, Mr. Lincoln's Admirals New York, , p. Edward McPherson, ed.

AYERS & MARTIN (eds.): America on the Eve of the Civil War (2010)

Robert M. Welles, Diary, p. At the time he tendered his resignation from the Navy, he was "waiting orders. As such, he was Commander Matthew Fontaine Maury's immediate superior. Maury was highly respected as Superintendent of the Naval Observatory. Welles, Diary, pp.

Causes of the Civil War

Frederick W. New York, , p. Magruder did resign but Shubrick did not though he was terribly distraught at having to choose sides. Of the officers who resigned, approximately became commissioned or warrant officers of the C. Ralph W. Heinl, Jr. Allan R. Based on information provided by George Ness, of Baltimore, Md.

Ness has worked for many years on a manuscript entitled "The Army on the Eve of the Civil War," in which he deals in detail with the question of resignations and dismissals. For a rather jaundiced view of Welles' policy by a contemporary, see also William J. Morgan, et al.

Navy, , pp. Accounts by or about former U.

America on the Eve of the Civil War Paperback | Reviews Online | PriceCheck

Brooke, Jr. Horan, ed. Reverse notation; "Dismiss. James B. Reverse notation: "Dismissed 14 June to take effect from 23 May Reverse notation: "Dismiss by order the President. Matthew F. Reverse notation: "Dismissed 15 May. Reverse notation: "Dismissed 18 Jan Chief Engineer James H. Reverse notation: "Dismissed 8 July Surgeon R. Reverse notation: "Dismissed 28 Sep to take effect when received. Reverse notation: "Dismissed 15 June Surgeon Charles F. Reverse notation: "Dismissed 13 Nov. LVIlI, No. For the text of letters passing between Secretary of the Navy Welles and Buchanan and the latter's chagrin at having acted prematurely, see Lewis, Captain Franklin Buchanan, pp.

Navy, ; Letters of Resignation from Commissioned Officers immediately before and following the outbreak of the Civil War and the Secretary's Acceptance, 2 vols.

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Register of the Secretary of the Navy, , pp. This column contains the crucial date which indicates when the Navy Department considered a resignation to have been accepted or dismissed. A resignation had no effect until this date. Time lags between tender and acceptance or dismissal were usually due to distance between officer and Washington, D. Navy Registers show officers geographical location at only three points during their careers: state of birth without date , state from which appointed which sometimes had no relationship to residence and state of which the officer was a citizen.

In instances where a line and no rank appears, the officer did not join the Confederate State Navy. In some cases, not indicated, a Confederate officer would be a member of the "Virginia Navy," the "South Carolina Navy," or the "Georgia Navy," although these state navies were small and had but a brief existence.