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First Casualties Of The Civil War

April 19, 2012 by  

The Civil War’s first casualties from hostile fire came not on soil in a Confederate State, but in Baltimore, Md., on April 19, 1861. (A gun explosion during Ft. Sumter surrender ceremonies had killed two Union soldiers.)

Maryland was a border State that was divided over its loyalty to the Union or the Southern cause. President Abraham Lincoln had received just 2 percent of Baltimore’s vote for President, with most of the votes going to Southern Democratic candidate John Breckinridge. Most of the State’s western counties also went for Breckinridge.

On Feb. 18, 1861, the Maryland legislature called a secession convention. The session ended — but did not adjourn — the next day without a decision.

On April 19, Union troops making up the 6th Massachusetts Regiment marched through Baltimore en route to Washington. They were surrounded by local citizens who began jeering them. Events escalated until finally the troops opened fire and fighting began in the streets. When the dust cleared, four soldiers from 6th Massachusetts were dead and 36 were wounded. Twelve citizens were dead and an unknown number were injured.

Lincoln quickly sent troops to occupy Baltimore. He suspended habeas corpus, and Secretary of War Simon Cameron ordered Maj. George McClellan to arrest all pro-Southern members of the Legislature prior to Sept. 17, the day the Legislature had scheduled to reconvene its secession convention. Pro-secession city officials were also arrested, including Baltimore Mayor George Brown.

Bruce Catton writes in The Civil War: “All of this, of course, was plainly illegal, the Federal government was not going to let the secessionists cut Washington off from the rest of the North, no matter what it had to do to prevent it; with dissident legislators in jail, the Unionist governor of Maryland had little trouble holding the state in the Union.”

After pro-secessionist legislators were removed from the equation, the Maryland Legislature was unable to establish a quorum to consider secession; and Maryland, at the point of the gun, was kept in the Union.

Bob Livingston

is an ultra-conservative American and author of The Bob Livingston Letter™, founded in 1969. Bob has devoted much of his life to research and the quest for truth on a variety of subjects. Bob specializes in health issues such as nutritional supplements and alternatives to drugs, as well as issues of privacy (both personal and financial), asset protection and the preservation of freedom.

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  • Vigilant

    April 23, 1861:

    “The President told the Baltimore delegation: “You, gentlemen, come here to me and ask for peace on any terms, and yet have no word of condemnation for those who are making war on us. You express great horror of bloodshed, and yet would not lay a straw in the way of those who are organizing in Virginia and elsewhere to capture this city. The rebels attack Fort Sumter, and your citizens attack troops sent to the defense of the Government, and the lives and property in Washington, and yet you would have me break my oath and surrender the Government without a blow. There is no Washington in that – no Jackson in that – no manhood nor honor in that. I have no desire to invade the South; but I must have troops to defend this Capital. Geographically it lies surrounded by the soil of Maryland; and mathematically the necessity exists that they should come over her territory. Our men are not moles, and can’t dig under the earth; they are not birds, and can’t fly through the air. There is no way but to march across, and that they must do. But in doing this there is no need of collision. Keep your rowdies in Baltimore, and there will be no bloodshed. Go home and tell your people that if they will not attack us, we will not attack them; but if they do attack us, we will return it, and that severely.”

  • Vigilant

    April 24, 1861: Lincoln’s reply to a letter from Maryland attorney Reverdy Johnson,

    “I do say the sole purpose of bringing troops here is to defend this capital.

    “I do say I have no purpose to invade Virginia, with them or any other troops, as I understand the word invasion. But suppose Virginia sends her troops, or admits other through her border, to assail this capital, am I not to repel them, even to the crossing of the Potomac if I can?

    “Suppose Virginia erects, or permits to be erected, batteries on the opposite shore, to bombard the city, are we to stand still and see it done? In a word, if Virginia strikes us, are we not to strike back, and as effectively as we can?

    “Again, are we not to hold Fort Monroe (for instance) if we can? I have no objection to declare a thousand times that I have no purpose to invade Virginia or any other State, but I do not mean to let them invade us without striking back.”

    • Bob Livingston

      Dear Vigilant,

      “I do say I have no purpose to invade Virginia, with them or any other troops, as I understand the word invasion.” And yet that is what he promptly did. He began blockading southern ports (an act of war) and on June 3, McClellan attacked at Philippi, Va., and on July 11 he attacked at Rich Mountain, Va. McDowell was on his way to Richmond when he met Confederate troops at Bull Run.

      Of course, this is just one of the many lies Lincoln uttered.

      Best wishes,

      • kellygneiting

        What’s that line in “V” for Vendetta. Something like, “Patriots tell lies to bring to light truth, while politicians tell lies to cover the truth up.”

        Hey Bob, please consider checking us out at IndependentAmericanParty(dot)org. We’d love to have you aboard.

        Kelly Gneiting

      • Vigilant

        “On May 8, [Maryland] Governor Hicks wrote President Lincoln: “I deem it to be my duty to inform you that the Virginia troops at and near Harper’s Ferry have seized Canal Boats laden with produce destined for Washington and Georgetown; have planted batteries at important positions in the neighborhood; and have grossly violated the rights and injured the property of citizens of Maryland….In regard to the aggressions of the Virginia troops, I trust your Excellency will take such prompt steps as will effectually prevent their recurrence.”

        Note to Bob Livingston: May 8th was before June 3 and July 11.

      • flajim

        Many fail to understand that the War of Northern Aggression was instigated by the very vain Lincoln. The first shots of the war were at either Harper’s Ferry or Hampton Roads, VA.

        Another fallacy is that the war was fought ‘to free the slaves.’ Hogwash. It was about States’ Rights. Lincoln was heavily financed by northeastern manufacturers who wanted their exports to be lightly tariffed and the South’s to have high tariffs. In 1860, tariffs on Southern goods financed 80% of the federal government.

        An apt lesson: government will go to war against its own people when its revenue demands are not satisfied.

      • Vigilant

        flajim says, ““Many fail to understand that the War of Northern Aggression was instigated by the very vain Lincoln.”

        Absolutely false. Rather than rely on non-historians like Thomas DiLorenzo or on the slavery apologists’ programming of Southern school children, JUST ONCE refer to the source documents of the times before you make false statements.

        Lincoln acted with restraint and care to prevent secession. The President-elect went so far as to support a 13th Amendment to the Constitution (The Corwin Amendment) that would have legalized slavery forever in the states, as follows:

        “No amendment shall be made to the Constitution which will authorize or give to Congress the power to abolish or interfere, within any State, with the domestic institutions thereof, including that of persons held to labor or service by the laws of said State.”

        On February 28, 1861…the House approved Corwin’s version by a vote of 133 to 65.
        On March 2, 1861, the United States Senate adopted it, 24 to 12.

        Abraham Lincoln, in his first inaugural address, said of the Corwin Amendment:

        “I understand a proposed amendment to the Constitution—which amendment, however, I have not seen—has passed Congress, to the effect that the Federal Government shall never interfere with the domestic institutions of the States, including that of persons held to service….[H]olding such a provision to now be implied constitutional law, I have no objection to its being made express and irrevocable.”

        Does that sound like a president trying to foment war, or a president trying to appease the Southern secessionists? And THAT’S from the historical source documents, not some “The South will rise again” revisionist.

      • Vigilant

        Excerpt of letter from Abraham Lincoln to Alexander Stephens, 1860:

        “Do the people of the South really entertain fears that a Republican administration would, directly, or indirectly, interfere with their slaves, or with them, about their slaves? If they do, I wish to assure you, as once a friend, and still, I hope, not an enemy, that there is no cause for such fears.

        “The South would be in no more danger in this respect, than it was in the days of Washington. I sup­pose, how­ever, this does not meet the case.”

        Does that sound like a president trying to foment war, or a president trying to appease the Southern secessionists? And THAT’S from the historical source documents, not some “The South will rise again” revisionist.

      • Vigilant

        Lincoln’s 1862 reply to Horace Greeley for the National Intelligencer in Washington:

        “I would save the Union. I would save it the shortest way under the Constitution. The sooner the national authority can be restored; the nearer the Union will be “the Union as it was.” If there be those who would not save the Union, unless they could at the same time save slavery, I do not agree with them. If there be those who would not save the Union unless they could at the same time destroy slavery, I do not agree with them. My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and is not either to save or to destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone I would also do that. What I do about slavery, and the colored race, I do because I believe it helps to save the Union; and what I forbear, I forbear because I do not believe it would help to save the Union. I shall do less whenever I shall believe what I am doing hurts the cause, and I shall do more whenever I shall believe doing more will help the cause. I shall try to correct errors when shown to be errors; and I shall adopt new views so fast as they shall appear to be true views.”

      • Vigilant

        Conclusions based on the above three factual, historical sources and not on speculation or Southern revisionist history:

        (1) Lincoln did everything in his power to avoid a Civil War, including sponsorship of a Constitutional amendment that would have made slavery legal everywhere in the US.

        (2) No one in the North was propagandized to believe it was about slavery; proof is contained in the simple fact that the no slaves were freed in the Union states until the 13th Amendment. If it was about slavery, they would have been freed immediately in the North when Lincoln took office; they were not, nor did any Northerner expect them to be.

        (3) Racism was almost as prevalent in the North as it was in the South. Lincoln would have found little to no support for emancipation as a casis belli. From the start, it was all about preserving the Union, and nothing but preserving the Union. Horace Greeley and William Lloyd Garrison, leading abolitionists, excoriated Lincoln for his refusal to bring the slavery question into the mix.

        (4) The Emancipation Proclamation was a military move to free Southern slaves in hopes they would rebel against their owners. Slaves were not freed in the North. Many Union soldiers refused to serve with blacks, necessitating separate regiments of black-only soldiers.

        (5) Northern schools in our day may have brainwashed the children to believe the Civil War was all about abolishing slavery, but no such liberal propaganda was ever attempted by Republican leaders leading up to, and during, the Civil War itself.

  • Steve E

    One thing Lincoln and Obama have in common is that they both divided the country. Only Lincoln was responsible for hundreds of thousands of deaths, and Obama has not yet done that. Not yet.

  • dan

    Excellent ,Bob and Vigilant….their are too many Lincoln worshipers in this Republic
    and not enough Constitutionalists or historical scholars that haven’t swallowed the
    propaganda they serve up in the government-schools.

  • KG

    Thank God Lincoln did what he did. As in love, nothing is fair in war.
    “…so that government of the people, by the people, and for the people shall not perish from the earth.”
    “…by any means necessary.” Malcom X

    • Thor

      ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. That whenever any form of government becomes destructive to these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it.’

      I’ll raise you one of these every time….

      • angelicsweep

        Great Thor! Lincoln was NOT the great president he has been portrayed to be! The history we read and hear about has been edited by pro Lincoln historians who could care less about TRUTH!

      • Vigilant

        Lincoln was the great president he has been portrayed to be! The Southern revisionist history we read and hear about nowadays has been edited by anti-Lincoln pseudohistorians who could care less about TRUTH!

  • Charles A. Botts III

    “Lies”, “propaganda”, “government-schools”- the utter ignorance displayed on this site baffles the mind sometimes. What exactly IS a “Constitutionalist”? That there aren’t “enough” historical scholars that agree with your extreme reconstructionist views of historical events is that you have to do the research and examine the facts of a historical character or event in the context of the times. That’s what makes them scholars and not propagandists pushing an extremist agenda. Lincoln should not be “worshipped” anymore than Washington, Jefferson, Henry and others should be worshipped for having the courage to do the right thing when it needed to be done, no matter how unpopular, or risky to their own political and personal lives. To assert Lincoln (or Obama for that matter) divided this country is the silliest assertion ever made. The economic and social forces that were in conflict for decades before Lincoln took office is similar to today’s dilemna that Obama inherited in that a small economically powerful elite has convinced a large number of uneducated disadvantaged citizens to blame a single politician and be fearful of a sinister conspiracy that he supposedly represents. It’s the Nazi’s Big Lie Tactic being repeated all over again. Be assured- ‘ You can fool some of the people all of the time, and you can fool all of the people some of the time, but you can’t fool all of the people all of the time.”

    • Vigilant

      Excellent post, Charles.

      The country was divided before Lincoln took office, for sure. The Tariff of Abominations and the Force Bill allowing Jackson to march into nullificationist South Carolina had occurred almost 30 years earlier.

      On May 1, 1833, Jackson wrote, “the tariff was only the pretext, and disunion and southern confederacy the real object. The next pretext will be the negro, or slavery question.”

      Lincoln was a man made by his times, not vice-versa. He was neither saint nor Satan.

  • Dennis48e

    Where is Flashy with his revisionist history of the War of Northern Agression?

  • Blah blah

    Wow, looks like some of you are still bitter you aren’t aloud to own black people anymore.

    • s c

      B, if you had put some effort into your ‘education,’ you’d realize that there’s a big difference between ‘aloud’ and ‘allowed.’ Obviously, you’re a typical utopian.
      Moreover, you will never admit that the W H yahoo has made it possible that Amerika will have another civil war. This time around, it will be to free the nation from the clutches of an insane Uncle Scam. Got a way to protect yourself from traveling mobs looking for whatever they can steal?
      Ignore history, bubba, and you get to repeat it. SOME people NEVER learn. They’re properly called ultraliberal, progressive utopians – and scum.

  • Charles A. Botts III

    The only war that will be waged in America is the one that’s being waged on the working people , middle class, unions, minorities and anyone that isn’t part of or doesn’t support the corporate and financial oligarchy that has been responsible for the largest transfer of wealth to the minority ruling elite since the sack of Rome. This has been going on has been going on since Teddy Roosevelt was blind-sided by his own party to thwart his benevolent libertarian economic stewardship at the turn of the last century and has been openly flaunted ever since Reagan got everyone to drink the deregulation kool-aid. The fallacy of the rich believing that the apparatus of law and order will protect them is the only obvious truth to come out of a campaign to corrupt, subvert and make ineffective the mechanisms of government at all levels that protect the populace and environment from the New Age Robber Banker Barons that seek short term profits and bonuses at the expense of the long term health and welfare of the nation. The Big Lie of the Propaganda organs of the Ruling Elite is to shout long and hard and incessantly about the threat of “Big Gov’t Socialism”, when it exists already for the Corporate and Financial Elite. They count on it to bail them out of their excesses and greedy mistakes, just ask Exxon, BP or the architects of Bhopal, India massacre. They count on the average citizen to be distracted, confused or bored by their media dog & pony show. They also count on the police and military throw in with them and protect them. If the volume and level of their diatribe is any indication, they know they’re whistling in the dark. The 1% advance their corrupt agenda just as the Southern slave-holding ruling minority, tricked and lied to the poor, uneducated masses of non-slaveholding sharecroppers, merchants and other God-fearing citizens to protect their evil and obsolete economic system of getting rich off of the backs, literally, of their human property, under the guise of protecting States Rights and sovereignty.. It’s not the Gov’t that is insane, it’s the belief that a small, privileged minority that is insulated from the world that the rest of us live in, can dictate to the rest of humanity and create a totally artificial and bankrupt reality that we are expected to pay for. The only thing more insane is the practice of wrapping this warped philosophy in the guise of patriotism and Christianity. Next thing we’ll be reading is that Jesus was a Constitutionalist.

  • former walmart person

    Here will be Civil War 2 in a nutshell: Hyperinflation happens, and you have mass rioting in the streets. People are shooting each other with all the guns they bought en mass. The military is ordered to put a stop to it, but a civil war erupts, because at least 25% in the military REALLY know what is going on, and refuse to follow orders to imprison and use the new hollow point rounds on the American people. So you have the military siding with the Pentegon fighting the military siding with some red necks in the woods armed with AR-15s and such. If the military siding with the Pentegon wins, you have mass internment and death. FEMA found a use for all the coffins. If the righteous military siding with the people starts getting the upper hand, the elite either A. call in the UN to mop up. B. unleash chemical and biological death on everyone while hiding underground in huge secret bases, or C. absolute last resort, the elite retreat underground where they know they must remain for 1000s of years (they DO have enough supplies to last that long, beleive me) and unleash total and full nuclear holocaust. I am certain the elite can remote launch all nukes without relying on some buck Airforce airman sitting in a silo. That crap in the movies where an airman decides not to launch the missle is a load of crap. If the elites want nuclear holocaust, then nuclear holocaust it shall be. The only reason we haven’t had it yet, is because the elites by and large are also Earth freaks who want the vast wilderness for themselves, but they will unleash nucelar death and retreat underground as a last resort if they have to!!

    At any rate, the investment in all those FEMA coffins would seem to be the wisest investment ever made by the federal government. No matter what happens, the coffin makers will be making huge profits in the years to come.

    Toodles! See you in the afterlife soon! At least I don’t have to worry about planning for retirement (I am 31 – ROFL, LOL, can you imagine me making it to 65?) HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    • former walmart person

      All of this ignores the fact, that should all hell break loose in this country, we could have hundreds of “fukishimas” going on spewing radiation all over the place. If all these nuclear reactors can’t keep water flowing over the shut down reactors (which apparently take months to shut down for some reason), then we have lots of nuclear meltdowns, as a total shut down of the grid may make cooling the reactors impossible. So, even if you are a hard core survivalist who survives hyperinflation, civil war 2, your hungry neighbors, etc., your life may end in 10 years at the most if you are lucky from radiation sickness.

  • http://NONE rmgdnnow

    I did not see any mention of the obvious fact that the Confederacy’s cotton commerce with Great Britain and the latter’s abject need for cotton in their textile factories would result in a treaty between the CSA and London. This would cause a gradual and robust British influence in Richmond. Such an eventuality would place a potential adversary just across the state lines of several “border states,” and a continuing threat from the mighty British Empire to the sovereignty and security of the U.S. Not to mention that the Brits would soon set their eyes on the undeveloped and unprotected areas west of the Mississipi from Missouri to Texas


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