Was there really a majority for secession in the south?

Mosby

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Elections were not secret ballot. You announced your vote in front of the candidates. Planters controlled elections in many areas. So I wonder if delegates to secession conventions were really democratically elected.

South Carolina and Louisiana had property restriction on voting.

Virginia initially voted 2-1 against secession. That 8-5 for secession. It's secession was confirmed by a questionable referendum with a 5-1 popular vote for secession. The vote was unanimous for secession in many counties. All the votes were lost and not counted from several Unionist counties. Tennessee seceded based on a fraudulent referendum with no vote of a convention to secede. North Carolina seceded after it was cut off from the Union by Virginia and Tennessee seceding.
 

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Drew

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Elections were not secret ballot. You announced your vote in front of the candidates. Planters controlled elections in many areas. So I wonder if delegates to secession conventions were really democratically elected.

South Carolina and Louisiana had property restriction on voting.

Virginia initially voted 2-1 against secession. That 8-5 for secession. It's secession was confirmed by a questionable referendum with a 5-1 popular vote for secession. The vote was unanimous for secession in many counties. All the votes were lost and not counted from several Unionist counties. Tennessee seceded based on a fraudulent referendum with no vote of a convention to secede. North Carolina seceded after it was cut off from the Union by Virginia and Tennessee seceding.
*Edited* You will get called out around here if you haven't done your homework.

Welcome to Civil War Talk, "Mosby."
 
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Pat Young

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Elections were not secret ballot. You announced your vote in front of the candidates. Planters controlled elections in many areas. So I wonder if delegates to secession conventions were really democratically elected.

South Carolina and Louisiana had property restriction on voting.

Virginia initially voted 2-1 against secession. That 8-5 for secession. It's secession was confirmed by a questionable referendum with a 5-1 popular vote for secession. The vote was unanimous for secession in many counties. All the votes were lost and not counted from several Unionist counties. Tennessee seceded based on a fraudulent referendum with no vote of a convention to secede. North Carolina seceded after it was cut off from the Union by Virginia and Tennessee seceding.
And, of course, blacks were not allowed to vote.
 

Robtweb1

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Welcome from West Tennessee.

The State of Tennessee did not leave the Union immediately. There was a state referendum to decide the question of secession on February 9. The results were:

Against
69,452
54.6%

For
57,745
45.4%

Total
127,197
100%

(Vote Archive, Tennessee Vote on Secession Convention February 9, 1861, https://votearchive.com/tn-sec-conv-vote-1861/)


Although the electorate voted not to secede, it did move to reactivate the state militia and passed legislation that required all white males between the ages of eighteen and forty-five to be formed into companies, regiments, brigades and divisions.

(Goodspeed, Weston A. The Goodspeed History of Tennessee Illustrated, Nashville: Woodson and Stinson Printing Company1887, pp 515,517,519, hereafter cited as Goodspeed)

1549799970381.jpg


1549799970634.gif

April 15, 1861, three days after the first shots of the war were fired at Fort Sumter in Charleston Harbor, Abraham Lincoln put out a call for 75,000 volunteers to put down the rebellion, asking that twenty-five hundred of them come from Tennessee.

In response, Tennessee’s Governor Isham Harris replied that they should not expect

"A single man for coercion . . . but 50,000, if necessary, for the defense of our rights or those of our Southern Brethren."

(The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies,70 Volumes in 128 Parts, Washington D. C.: Government Printing Office, 1880-1900, Series I, Volume 52,Part II, p. 50, hereafter cited as Official Records)

Henry Washington Hilliard was appointed "Special Commissioner," with full authority of the Confederate States, by President Davis and sent to Nashville to confer with Governor Harris. After his arrival he reported to Robert Toombs, Confederate Secretary of State, that "The spirit of the people is fully roused, so popular a war I never saw, nor do I recall any recorded in history that called out a more prompt and uncalculating spirit on the part of the people.”

(Official Record, , Series I, Volume 52, Part II, p 88)

He addressed the Tennessee State Assembly and on May 1 the state legislature authorized Governor Harris to appoint three commissioners to enter into a military league with authorities of the Confederate States ... “having in view the protection and defense of the entire South against the war that is now being carried on against it." The legislature also voted in a bill to “submit to the vote of the people a Declaration of Independence”.

(Goodspeed, pp 522-528)

The second referendum in Tennessee took place on June 8th, 1861. The results differed significantly from the first referendum and were:

For
108,274
69.6%

Against
47,247
30.4%

Total
155,521
100%



(Vote Archive, Tennessee Vote on Secession Convention June 8, 1861)

https://votearchive.com/tn-sec-conv-vote-1861/)

Tennessee officially left the union and became the last state to join the Confederate States of America.
 

leftyhunter

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Elections were not secret ballot. You announced your vote in front of the candidates. Planters controlled elections in many areas. So I wonder if delegates to secession conventions were really democratically elected.

South Carolina and Louisiana had property restriction on voting.

Virginia initially voted 2-1 against secession. That 8-5 for secession. It's secession was confirmed by a questionable referendum with a 5-1 popular vote for secession. The vote was unanimous for secession in many counties. All the votes were lost and not counted from several Unionist counties. Tennessee seceded based on a fraudulent referendum with no vote of a convention to secede. North Carolina seceded after it was cut off from the Union by Virginia and Tennessee seceding.
Hi @Mosby ,
You might be interested in my thread " Was the vote for Secession free and fair". I can bump it up for you if you like. It sounds like you did do your homework.
*Edited*
Leftyhunter
 
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leftyhunter

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Welcome from West Tennessee.

The State of Tennessee did not leave the Union immediately. There was a state referendum to decide the question of secession on February 9. The results were:

Against
69,452
54.6%

For
57,745
45.4%

Total
127,197
100%

(Vote Archive, Tennessee Vote on Secession Convention February 9, 1861, https://votearchive.com/tn-sec-conv-vote-1861/)


Although the electorate voted not to secede, it did move to reactivate the state militia and passed legislation that required all white males between the ages of eighteen and forty-five to be formed into companies, regiments, brigades and divisions.

(Goodspeed, Weston A. The Goodspeed History of Tennessee Illustrated, Nashville: Woodson and Stinson Printing Company1887, pp 515,517,519, hereafter cited as Goodspeed)

View attachment 290734

View attachment 290735
April 15, 1861, three days after the first shots of the war were fired at Fort Sumter in Charleston Harbor, Abraham Lincoln put out a call for 75,000 volunteers to put down the rebellion, asking that twenty-five hundred of them come from Tennessee.

In response, Tennessee’s Governor Isham Harris replied that they should not expect

"A single man for coercion . . . but 50,000, if necessary, for the defense of our rights or those of our Southern Brethren."

(The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies,70 Volumes in 128 Parts, Washington D. C.: Government Printing Office, 1880-1900, Series I, Volume 52,Part II, p. 50, hereafter cited as Official Records)

Henry Washington Hilliard was appointed "Special Commissioner," with full authority of the Confederate States, by President Davis and sent to Nashville to confer with Governor Harris. After his arrival he reported to Robert Toombs, Confederate Secretary of State, that "The spirit of the people is fully roused, so popular a war I never saw, nor do I recall any recorded in history that called out a more prompt and uncalculating spirit on the part of the people.”

(Official Record, , Series I, Volume 52, Part II, p 88)

He addressed the Tennessee State Assembly and on May 1 the state legislature authorized Governor Harris to appoint three commissioners to enter into a military league with authorities of the Confederate States ... “having in view the protection and defense of the entire South against the war that is now being carried on against it." The legislature also voted in a bill to “submit to the vote of the people a Declaration of Independence”.

(Goodspeed, pp 522-528)

The second referendum in Tennessee took place on June 8th, 1861. The results differed significantly from the first referendum and were:

For
108,274
69.6%

Against
47,247
30.4%

Total
155,521
100%



(Vote Archive, Tennessee Vote on Secession Convention June 8, 1861)

https://votearchive.com/tn-sec-conv-vote-1861/)

Tennessee officially left the union and became the last state to join the Confederate States of America.
There is indeed sourced evidence in my thread hat their was voter intimidation in Tennessee. Tennessee supplied 42 k enlisted troops to the Union not counting Unionist guerrillas and home guards.
Leftyhunter
 

Robtweb1

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I have no doubt that there was some voter intimidation, Just as there is today, by both political parties. I used to live in Chattanooga and they have a great research library there, plus the Chickamauga and Lookout Mountain Battlefield Parks. Saw a lot of records, photos, etc. of Union soldiers from East Tennessee. Worked with a guy descended from one. He had a picture and the man was listed as a "scout".

Tennessee might as well be three separate states as political views vary according to the three regions here. A breakdown of the two secession referendums in each of the three regions show a change as you go from west to east. Sorry that I don't have a source handy for that, but they are available from state voting records.
 
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leftyhunter

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I have doubt that there was some voter intimidation, Just as there is today, by both political parties. I used to live in Chattanooga and they have a great research library there, plus the Chickamauga and Lookout Mountain Battlefield Parks. Saw a lot of records, photos, etc. of Union soldiers from East Tennessee. Worked with a guy descended from one. He had a picture and the man was listed as a "scout".

Tennessee might as well be three separate states as political views vary according to the three regions here. A breakdown of the two secession referendums in each of the three regions show a change as you go from west to east. Sorry that I don't have a source handy for that, but they are available from state voting records.
I am not aware of contemporary physical intimidation of voter's. Yes there was differences in support of Secession in the various sections of Tennessee.
Leftyhunter
 

CSA Today

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North Carolina seceded after it was cut off from the Union by Virginia and Tennessee seceding
North Carolina seceded after Lincoln's call for two regiments from the state to assist his planned invasion of the Confederates States. Tennessee (June 8) seceded after North Carolina (May 20) so what Tennessee did or didn't do had nothing to with North Carolina's decision. A North Carolina referendum to consider secession had narrowly failed in February 1861.
 

jgoodguy

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North Carolina seceded after Lincoln's call for two regiments from the state to assist his planned invasion of the Confederates States. Tennessee (June 8) seceded after North Carolina (May 20) so what Tennessee did or didn't do had nothing to with North Carolina's decision. A North Carolina referendum to consider secession had narrowly failed in February 1861.
That is forces needed to put down a hostile rebellion that attacked the United States. NC had the right to refuse Lincoln and stay loyal to the Union.
 

CSA Today

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That is forces needed to put down a hostile rebellion that attacked the United States. NC had the right to refuse Lincoln and stay loyal to the Union.
I doubt the US Navy had the ships to launch a successful invasion of South Carolina and the other Confederate States south of North Carolina in 1861.
 

Rebforever

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Elections were not secret ballot. You announced your vote in front of the candidates. Planters controlled elections in many areas. So I wonder if delegates to secession conventions were really democratically elected.

South Carolina and Louisiana had property restriction on voting.

ThVirginia initially voted 2-1 against secession. That 8-5 for secession. It's secession was confirmed by a questionable referendum with a 5-1 popular vote for secession. e vote was unanimous for secession in many counties. All the votes were lost and not counted from several Unionist counties. Tennessee seceded based on a fraudulent referendum with no vote of a convention to secede. North Carolina seceded after it was cut off from the Union by Virginia and Tennessee seceding.
Do you have a source for the hilited part of your statement?
 

lelliott19

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Elections were not secret ballot. You announced your vote in front of the candidates. Planters controlled elections in many areas. So I wonder if delegates to secession conventions were really democratically elected.

South Carolina and Louisiana had property restriction on voting.

Virginia initially voted 2-1 against secession. That 8-5 for secession. It's secession was confirmed by a questionable referendum with a 5-1 popular vote for secession. The vote was unanimous for secession in many counties. All the votes were lost and not counted from several Unionist counties. Tennessee seceded based on a fraudulent referendum with no vote of a convention to secede. North Carolina seceded after it was cut off from the Union by Virginia and Tennessee seceding.
Hello @Mosby and welcome to Civil War Talk - the best place on the internet for Civil War discussion. This question was recently and pretty thoroughly discussed in this thread which you might find of interest. https://civilwartalk.com/threads/did-a-majority-of-white-southerns-support-secession-poll.151609/page-2
 

leftyhunter

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Elections were not secret ballot. You announced your vote in front of the candidates. Planters controlled elections in many areas. So I wonder if delegates to secession conventions were really democratically elected.

South Carolina and Louisiana had property restriction on voting.

Virginia initially voted 2-1 against secession. That 8-5 for secession. It's secession was confirmed by a questionable referendum with a 5-1 popular vote for secession. The vote was unanimous for secession in many counties. All the votes were lost and not counted from several Unionist counties. Tennessee seceded based on a fraudulent referendum with no vote of a convention to secede. North Carolina seceded after it was cut off from the Union by Virginia and Tennessee seceding.
It would be fair to say the majority of white Southerners supported secession early in the ACW. Has Confederate fortunes waned not so much. By the summer of 1864 President Davis delivered a speech in Macon,Georgia where he bemoaned the fact that 2/3rds of the Confederate Army were AWOL and he beseeched them to return to the Confederate Army. The speech transcript is easy to find just google "President Davis Speech Macon Georgia 1864 and the link from Rice University should pop up.
Also by the summer of 1864 the Confederacy was loosing control of parts of its territory due to Unionist guerrillas.
Leftyhunter
 


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