Not all was peaceful on the Illinois Homefront


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leftyhunter

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Compared to anti-confederate resistance in almost all Southern states it is very mild by comparison. In my thread "Union vs CSA guerrillas I have numerous sourced quotes that their was considerably more violent resistance to the CSA then the Union suffered in Il. Their was significant violent ant-Union resistance in Mo, Ky and Wv.
Leftyhunter
 

Georgia Sixth

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Good article and thanks for sharing this. The winning "side" of the civil war has, for whatever reasons, escaped the sort of scrutiny focused on the losing states. Hopefully, this is changing as it will unsettle some sleepy assumptions and give a fuller picture of what was going on. In a similar vein, I've started volume one of William Marvel's 4-volume work on the war from the northern perspective and am finding it to be revelatory. He really paints a picture of a North with varied points of view and wildly divergent degrees of commitment to the war...or to peace.
 

Georgia Sixth

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Compared to anti-confederate resistance in almost all Southern states it is very mild by comparison. In my thread "Union vs CSA guerrillas I have numerous sourced quotes that their was considerably more violent resistance to the CSA then the Union suffered in Il. Their was significant violent ant-Union resistance in Mo, Ky and Wv.
Leftyhunter
You're totally right in that there was no comparison in the levels of anti-government violence. But I don't think this necessarily indicates a greater unity or commitment among the citizenry of the North, but rather is a function of the very different situations "on the ground". In the South, manpower had been stripped, military units were coming and going, and increasingly semblance of civil authority was evaporating as a result. This is an environment ripe for aggression of all sorts, political and criminal. The northern citizenry never did live in this type of environment. There always were military forces available to counter any outbreaks and the local civil systems did not break down. Please understand, I do not say that this also necessarily proves there was a level of dissatisfaction equal to that in those southern regions you mentioned. It only suggests that the dissatisfaction may have been much higher than indicated by violent incidents.
 

leftyhunter

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You're totally right in that there was no comparison in the levels of anti-government violence. But I don't think this necessarily indicates a greater unity or commitment among the citizenry of the North, but rather is a function of the very different situations "on the ground". In the South, manpower had been stripped, military units were coming and going, and increasingly semblance of civil authority was evaporating as a result. This is an environment ripe for aggression of all sorts, political and criminal. The northern citizenry never did live in this type of environment. There always were military forces available to counter any outbreaks and the local civil systems did not break down. Please understand, I do not say that this also necessarily proves there was a level of dissatisfaction equal to that in those southern regions you mentioned. It only suggests that the dissatisfaction may have been much higher than indicated by violent incidents.
No doubt their was plenty of Northern dissatisfaction with the CW. Yes Cooperheads did win some elections and as I noted in my thread "How serious was Union desertion" it very much was a problem for the Union. On the other hand in the 1864 election McCellan did not pledge an immediate cease fire or recognition of the CSA if he won. Il did vote for Lincoln to be reelected. The Union Army was only composed of 6% draftees. The Congress did adequately fund the Union military. Yes their was indeed dissent but nothing on the scale that the CSA went through.
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Sons of Liberty

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Illinois Copperheads certainly were a very rowdy bunch who raised a bit of Cain. Surprising to many people that President Lincolns home state could be so divided, but it is true. There was one instance of a local newspaper that had its office ransacked and its printing apparatus tossed out the window by Southern sympathizers. (There are four venomous snakes that are native to Illinois and copperheads are one of them that Mr. Lincoln would have known to be wary of.)
 

leftyhunter

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Their where some CSA troops recruited from what was known as"Little Egypt". A while back I read of an MSM raid into Il to attack Mo bushwackers. On the other hand their where various parts of Southern states that where far more hostile to the CSA then Southern Il was to the Union.
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I have civil war letters from my ancestor who was in Batter E of the Illinois Volunteer Light Artillery and I had a friend type up some of the information to this Wikipedia site along with some of the other information he found for me:
 

civilken

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I have to say I was shocked I went to a lecture the other night and it was on confederates after confederates I was surprised at the brutality of some southern men against people who wouldn't fight . I had never thought of it before so it kind of took me by surprise Gov. Vince was one of the worst.
 

Discipulus

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I am half way through The Era of the Civil War, 1848-1870, by Arthur Cole, and written in 1919. It is all about Illinois, written for the centennial of the state. He goes into great detail about the political and social divides between the sections of the state. The really good part is he does not neglect the center of the state whose feelings do not match north or south.
 

leftyhunter

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I read somewhere that from time to time the MSM would cross over to Illinois to attack Confederate Guerrillas that took shelter there. Samuel Hildebrand hid out in Illinois after the Civil War. It did not work out real well for him.
Leftyhunter
 

realevergreen

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Southern Illinois and Indiana, were quite southern and still are.
Very true Ole. Due to the Ohio River and the shape of Kentucky, there's a portion of IL and IN that are south of Richmond, VA. There were a number of settlers in southern IL that had come from the South and a fair number of settlers in northern IL that had come from New England, New York and PA. These met in central IL. Probably one of the main reasons for the existence of Cairo, IL as a shipping and ship building terminal during the war, like an arrowhead pointed toward the South.
 
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