By Menahem Blondheim
Harriet Beecher Stowe's Uncle Tom's Cabin has frequently been mentioned for its galvanizing impression on anti-slavery competition within the years earlier than the yank Civil conflict. Southern sympathizers within the North (known as Copperheads) by no means got here just about generating whatever that matched its impact. one of many extra fascinating makes an attempt used to be citadel Lafayette; or, Love and Secession (1862). the radical -- which gains liberal doses of affection and lust, intrigue and violence, loyalty and demise -- is via no potential nice literature. It does, although, lay declare to being the single pacifist novel of the Civil struggle. wooden was hoping to cajole his readers of the ethical incorrect, the folly, and the risks to republican executive of the conflict within which the rustic used to be engaged. the radical underscores the deep connections among americans on either side of the sectional clash, the soreness in their severance, and the affliction introduced approximately through war.
For this reissue, Menahem Blondheim has supplied a targeted creation to the unconventional, the politics of the period, and Wood's lifestyles and occupation. of Wood's Congressional speeches also are included.
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Extra resources for Copperhead Gore: Benjamin Wood's Fort Lafayette and Civil War America
In his congressional orations he even managed to avoid his disturbing and provocative prediction that the South would inevitably win the war, presenting instead a much more complex and sophisticated analysis of the balance of power between the sections. Wood’s orations as congressman focused instead on four themes: the injustice of the war, the inner contradictions of its goals, the aberrant nature of the war, and its dire consequences. The ¤rst of these reasoned objections to the war—questioning the validity of the Union’s cause—included nothing new.
Searle’s ¤nal touch in this “game of plot and counter-plot” is in writing an anonymous letter to the Union’s security authorities, reporting that Wayne, the anti-war Northerner, is a traitor and Confederate collaborator, and that a letter proving it is in his possession. S. marshal. Upon demand, he reluctantly hands over to the marshal what he thinks is Beverly’s discreet letter of warning to Miranda. The replacement, penned by Searle, reads: Richmond, May—, 1861. Dear Arthur: This will be handed to you by a sure hand.
At the very core of Fort Lafayette’s plot stands the fate of intersectional ties of kinship, friendship, and love, as challenged by political adversity and then by war. The novel tells the story of four friends: Beverly and his sister Oriana Weems, proud slaveholding Virginians, and Beverly’s Northern college friends, Arthur Wayne and Harold Hare. Hare, a Rhode Islander, and Oriana are engaged to be married. The story begins with the reunion of the four friends in the Weems’ Riverside manor overlooking the James, at the height of the Sumter crisis.
Copperhead Gore: Benjamin Wood's Fort Lafayette and Civil War America by Menahem Blondheim