Tag Archives: American Civil War

1865: An Army of Striking Labor

In Black Reconstruction in America (1935), W. E. B. Du Bois argues that a “general strike” by millions of enslaved African-Americans decided the outcome of the civil war. By rebelling against their masters, abandoning southern plantations, contributing their labor to … Continue reading

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1923: Emancipation Machine

“I feel that I have done something for the women who have always had to work so hard. This will enable them more easily to earn a living.” Statement of Christopher Latham Sholes, inventor of the typewriter   HOW WOMEN … Continue reading

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1862: Till Hell Freezes Over

The phrase “until Hell freezes over” seems to originate during the civil war, as the earliest examples in print date from that time. In his 1869 book, The Life and Campaigns of General U.S. Grant, from Boyhood to his Inauguration … Continue reading

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1918: Mysterious Island

N. C. Wyeth: Endpapers for a 1918 edition of Jules Verne’s Mysterious Island (1874). The book, a sequel to Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, recounts the adventures of five Union soldiers who escape their Confederate captors in a hot … Continue reading

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1865: Northern Lights

Frederic Edwin Church: Aurora Borealis (1865) “Some art historians have suggested that Church painted Aurora Borealis as a subdued tribute to the end of the Civil War, with the drapery of auroral light forming an abstract representation of the American … Continue reading

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1862: That Time Abraham Lincoln Levitated on a Piano

Fayette Hall’s  Secret and Political History of the War of the Rebellion (1890) (here) is an interesting example of conspiracy theory from the turn of the century, blaming “Abraham Lincoln’s lust for power, and the people’s greed for gold, or … Continue reading

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1865: John Wilkes Booth Shot Me!

In a letter published in the April 1910 issue of The Journal of Psychical Research, a woman named Ella Hughes recalled a childhood connection to John Wilkes Booth and a strange dream of her mother’s at the time of Lincoln’s … Continue reading

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