The Folwell letters, June 28, 1863: “I thought the Rear Guard would never get over.”

Over the course of three days, June 25-27, 1863, the Army of the Potomac crossed at Edwards Ferry into Maryland.  These troops would move up the roads through Maryland and within a few days be engaged at Gettysburg, some say to decide the course of the war.  But all of that was in the futureContinue reading “The Folwell letters, June 28, 1863: “I thought the Rear Guard would never get over.””

“No man should be a neutral in this great emergency”: What to do with discharged contrabands?

By mid-1864, a large population of former slaves, or contrabands to use the term applied at the time, existed at several places in the southern states behind Federal lines.  In particular the Department of the South had significant contraband “cities” around Port Royal Sound.  On one hand, these represented propaganda points for the north –Continue reading ““No man should be a neutral in this great emergency”: What to do with discharged contrabands?”