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150 Years Ago: Wednesday, May 1, 1861


Daily Highlights/Updates:
The Richmond Daily Dispatch publishes an article called “Fair Warning.” It describes the practice of the Southern states to employ female “Yankee” teachers. They not only work in large schools, but are often hired by plantation owners to provide private schooling. It’s insinuated to readers that these women have a large part in the formation of the morals and manners of “our daughters.” There is concern that women from the North might vocalize their differing opinions to the children of the South. The Mayor of Richmond has authorized the Daily Dispatch to warn these dangerous women that if they openly express any hostility against the South it will lead to them “incurring all the pains and penalties which the law has hitherto only inflicted on the sterner sex.” It closes with “A word to the wise.” 
Confederate General Beauregard sends communication to CSA Secretary of War Leroy Pope via two of his aides. They carry with them a tattered Confederate flag that was hit three times by the enemy’s artillery during the battle of Fort Sumter. Beauregard, knowing this is the first “baptized” flag, thought it worthy for preservation. 
Lincoln writes to Major Robert Anderson, Union hero of Fort Sumter. He had written an official letter a few days ago commending him on his handling of the Civil War’s first battle. Now he requests that Major Anderson come to Washington at his earliest convenience. The letter is meant to be “purely private and social”, but he mentions that he wants to “explain some things on my part, which you may not have understood.”
The First Minnesota Regiment of Volunteers had recently made camp at Fort Snelling, an old military post overlooking the Mississippi River that is approximately six miles from St. Paul. The Fort had been abandoned for over three years but was in relatively good condition and had ample quarters for 1,000 men. Five Companies had been mustered on April 29, with all troops taking an oath of allegiance to the Union. Today, several Minnesota military leaders, a few troops and important citizens – men & women – pose for a photo at the Fort.  
1stMNVol05011861.jpg
Fort Snelling, May 1, 1861
Source: Minnesota Historical Society
In Ohio, George B. McClellan is busy organizing troops for the state; 31,000 were called for, with approximately 81,000 volunteering their services.
A book by Harriet Jacobs called “Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl” gets a lackluster review today by the “Anti-Slavery Advocate.” Up until this time reviews were generally positive. Jacobs began to write about her life as a slave in anonymous letters to the New York Tribune in 1853, until the subject matter became so dark and disturbing that editor Horace Greeley could no longer continue to publish them. She was urged to contact Harriet Beecher Stowe, who wanted to use Jacobs history in a book she was working on called “A Key to Uncle Tom’s Cabin.” Jacobs decided to write her own book instead, using her letters as a start to her manuscript. It was completed in 1858 and after several attempts to get it published it was finally distributed in early 1861 under the alias “Linda Brent”, mostly sold in anti-slavery offices in New York City and Boston. 
Charles Francis Adams, Sr., son of former President John Quincy Adams and grandson of former President John Adams, resigns his position in the U.S. House of Representatives to accept a diplomat position as Lincoln’s Ambassador to the Court of St. James (United Kingdom). What made this a special appointment was Charles father and grandfather had also held this same, very strategically important position. The British government had already recognized the Confederate States informally, so Adams had a difficult job ahead of him: To maintain U.S./British relations and prevent official diplomatic recognition of the Confederacy.
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Like many others, I have a passion for the Civil War era, and for decades have chosen to spend my much of free time researching this topic - particularly the people, as the human component is what I find most fascinating. The site is not a source of revenue for me, nor is it tied in with a company or individual behind the scenes. It is my own personal venture. It is because of this genuine bond of respect and affection I feel towards this period in our history that I created "The Civil War Project." If this is your first time visiting the site, I welcome you and thank you for your interest. If you have any feedback or questions, please feel free to contact me at thecivilwarproject@yahoo.com.

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