Western Virginia Takes an Early Stand

Monday, November 12, 1860 West Virginia wouldn’t become its own state (and then part of the Union) until the summer of 1863, however, its stripes were already showing. Preston County, just across the border of the Maryland panhandle, was in a quandary over where their allegiance should lie. Would they go with Virginia, should sheRead More

As If Repetition Would Do Any Good

Saturday, November 10, 1860 South Carolina’s junior US senator, James Chesnut (husband of now-famous diarist, Mary Chesnut)1 , had long been a Unionist. On this date, however, he resigned his seat. Chesnut’s favor had changed to that of leaving the Union with the election of Lincoln (actually a bit before). The state’s senior senator, JamesRead More

Buchanan Calls a Meeting; 800 South Carolina Minute Men

Friday, November 9, 1860 In Washington DC, President Buchanan called a cabinet meeting about the threat of secession and to discuss his upcoming State of the Union address. He was against secession and wanted to hold a convention between all of the states to see if they couldn’t round up some sort of compromise. HisRead More

The Tea Has Been Thrown Overboard

Thursday, November 8, 1860 The mood of the southern states had not brightened two days after the election. In fact, the Charleston Mercury spelled it out plainly: “The tea has been thrown overboard, the revolution of 1860 has been initiated.” 100 miles down the coast, at a rally in Savannah, Georgia, the first flag ofRead More

Raising the Red Flag

Wednesday, November 7, 1860 The morning after the election, the Charleston Mercury announced to a seething public what was now already widely known throughout the city, that Abraham Lincoln was elected president. A red palmetto flag, similar to the South Carolina flag of today, but with a red background, was hoisted over the street fromRead More

Abraham Lincoln Elected President!

Tuesday, November 6, 1860 Over 4.6 million people voted in the 1860 election, it was the highest voter turnout ever reported in America (81.2%). This was known by all to be an incredibly important election. The southern people “knew” that if Lincoln was elected, there was a good chance that their states would attempt toRead More

Presidential Election of 1860 – Know Your Candidates

Republican National Convention held in Chicago, Illinois, May 16-18, 1860 Presidential: Abraham Lincoln, former Representative from Illinois Vice-Presidential: Hannibal Hamlin, Former governor and current Senator from Maine. Biography: Lincoln was a former Whig, a member of the House of Representatives from 1847 – 1849 where he opposed the Mexican War. He held a law practiceRead More