Monday, November 29, 2010

Henry Watterson's Interesting Life

Most people have probably never heard of Henry Watterson, but if you have ever driven on I-264 through Louisville, Kentucky, you might be familiar with the name. The Watterson Expressway connects I-64 to I-65 just south of downtown.

Other than knowing that Watterson was the longtime editor of the Louisville Courier Journal, I too knew little about the man. But, doing a some quick research, I turned up some interesting information on this individual who experienced many momentous events.

Watterson was born in Washington D.C. to Tennessee congressman Harvey M. Watterson and Talitha Black Watterson on February 16, 1840. Watterson was drawn to writing and the newspaper business at a young age. With the help of his father he started and edited the McMinnville, Tennessee New Era from 1856 to 1858. He left the Volunteer state for New York City and wrote for several publications there before landing in Washington D.C. and writing about politics for the Daily States, a Democratic sheet. While in Washington, Watterson later explained that he was sent to Harpers Ferry to report on John Brown's raid.

While doing research recently at the Filson Historical Society in Louisville, I ran across an article called "An Abortive Hero" that Watterson wrote in about 1910 or 1911 that briefly described his impressions of Harpers Ferry. Watterson wrote, "I reached Harpers Ferry about noon on Wednesday [actually Tuesday], the 18th of October, 1859, following the descent of the preceding Sunday night and Monday morning. I found there a good deal of suppressed feeling; not any tumult, or noise, or confusion. There had assembled quite a little army of us, newspaper reporters for the adjacent cities, but chiefly from Washington, whence the regular correspondents of the leading newspapers proceeded to the scene of what seemed a catastrophe, news of which fell upon the capital and the country like a clap of thunder out of a clear sky."

Watterson continued that, "I saw and talked with John Brown. I was as much opposed to human slavery, as earnest a devotee of human freedom, as he was, and therefore, I had no personal aversion to overcome. The horror I might have felt was deadened by the dramatic intensity of the moment. Col. [Robert E.] Lee was still there. Lieut. [J.E.B.] Stuart was my near friend and from his lips I learned all the details of what had happened. He [Stuart] uttered not a word of bitterness or reproach. 'The old man is crazy,' said he."

"An Abortive Hero" is a long article in which Watterson vents his disgust of contemporary (early 20th century) praise for John Brown. Watterson points particularly to two examples of what he saw as unwarranted deification: Oswald Garrison Villard's recent (1909) biography of Brown, and President Theodore Roosevelt's "New Nationalism" speech at Osawatomie, Kansas on July 31, 1910, that dedicated the John Brown Memorial Park. I will share more of "An Abortive Hero" in a later post.

After Harper's Ferry Watterson returned to writing and Washington D.C. where he had a front row seat to cover the inauguration of Abraham Lincoln. He then took a position with the Department of the Interior. Watterson claims that he was offered a secretary position with the Lincoln administration, but turned it down. Apparently not realizing the importance of the impending events Watterson returned to Tennessee. Although he didn't enlist in the Confederate service immediately, Watterson moved toward the Southern cause. He explained how he became a Confederate. "The boys were all gone to the front. The girls were - well, they were all crazy. My native country was about to be invaded, Propinquity. Sympathy. So, casting opinions to the winds in I went on feeling." In his autobiography Watterson also explained that he jumped from position to position in Confederate service. He rode for a while with Forrest immediately after the Fort Donelson disaster and then served as an aid and scout for general such as Joseph Johnston, Leonidas Polk and John Bell Hood.

During and in between his sporadic terms of service Watterson continued to write. Among others, he wrote for the Atlanta Southern Confederacy, the Nashville Banner and the Chattanooga Rebel. Watterson abruptly left the South before the war was over and landed in Cincinnati, Ohio where be began editing the Cincinnati Evening Post; a Republican sheet of all things. In September 1865 Watterson returned to Tennessee to become editor and part owner of the Nashville Banner. Watterson began to advocate for reconciliation between the North and South, and increase rights for African Americans during Reconstruction, and brought his ideas for a "New South" to Louisville where he merged the Louisville Courier with the Louisville Journal in 1868. Watterson retired in 1919 after an unresolved dispute with the Courier Journal's new owner Robert W. Bingham. Watterson died in Jacksonville, Florida in 1921 and is buried in Louisville's Cave Hill Cemetery.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Happy Birthday to Frank Armstrong...and Me

Today is a special day for me, its my birthday. I share this day with some noteworthy people. Some of them, such as the beautiful actress Scarlett Johanson, the funny Rodney Dangerfield, and tennis stars Boris Becker and Billie Jean King also call today birthday. Others, such as Mae West, Scatman Crothers, and one of the Three Stooges, Shemp Howard, departed on this day. An American tragedy too calls today its own; it's the day President John F. Kennedy was shot and died in Dallas, Texas in 1963.

Today was also the birthday of a Confederate general; one that few people know, but who claims a unique place in Civil War history.

Frank Crawford Armstrong was born in 1835 at the Choctaw Agency, Indian Territory (present day Oklahoma). Crawford was only a boy when his army officer father, Frank Wells Armstrong, died in 1839. His mother, Anne M. Willard Armstrong, married another army officer Persifor Smith. Armstrong received a good education at Holy Cross Academy and College in Massachusetts, but chose the army life like his father and step-father. In 1854 he accompanied his step-father Smith on a journey to New Mexico territory where he fought Indians and received a promotion to 2nd Lieutenant. Armstrong also participated in the Utah Mormon campaign with future Confederate general Albert Sidney Johnston in 1858-59.

When the Civil War broke out Armstrong was a captain in the United States 2nd Dragoons. He led the dragoons at the Battle of Manassas for the Union, but resigned his position shortly thereafter, which the War Department accepted on August 13, 1861. I don't know if the Union defeat played a significant part in Armstrong's decision to switch sides, but he made a quick departure back to the West. He was back across the Mississippi River in Missouri and serving as a staff officer for General Benjamin McCullough on August 10, 1861 at the Battle of Wilson's Creek. So, technically, since Armstrong's resignation from the U.S. army did not take effect until August 13, he was on both sides at once; something not many, if any, officers can claim.

Armstrong also saw action in Indian Territory and at Pea Ridge in 1861 and 1862. He was named Colonel for the 3rd Louisiana Infantry on May 8, 1862 while stationed near Corinth, Mississippi, but was soon transferred to cavalry service under General Sterling Price. In April 1863 Armstrong was formally promoted to brigadier general and placed in General Nathan Bedford Forrest's cavalry. He and his men participated in the Tullahoma Campaign and fought at Chickamauga. He also participated in the ill-fated Knoxville campaign, the Atlanta campaign and John Bell Hood's Tennessee campaign in the fall and winter of 1864-65. Armstrong's command guarded Selma, Alabama in the spring of 1865, and there fought the Union cavalry of general James H. Wilson. His command was surrendered on May 4, 1865.

After the war Armstrong worked in Texas with the Overland Mail Service. In the late 1880s he served as a United States Indian Inspector, and in the 1890s he was the Assistant Commissioner of Indian Affairs. Frank Crawford Armstrong died on September 8, 1909 in Bar Harbor, Maine and was buried in Rock Creek Cemetery in Washington D.C.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Looking for Historical Nuggets-Benjamin Mills Part II

This particular roll of microfilm was in pretty bad condition. I was unable to make digital copies as I normally do for my records, and also to save time, so I transcribed it. By taking a significant amount of time I was able to make out almost all of the article, with the exception of only about three words where the original edition appeared to have been torn when the microfilm image was made.

After I found the issue I was looking for, I grew a bit anxious as I scanned through page after page unable to locate the article. Finally, I came across the title; JOHN BROWN'S RAID: Related By a Kentucky Gunsmith Who Was Master Armor-HOW THE OLD MAN SURRENDERED. I found Courier-Journal's choice of the last part of the title interesting since Brown was certainly forced to capitulate rather than just surrender as it seems to imply.

By the time the interview was conducted in 1881 by the Courier-Journal correspondent Mills had moved from Harrodsburg to Lexington, Kentucky where he operated a gun shop with his son, Charles, who interestingly had served in John Hunt Morgan's Confederate cavalry during the Civil War. Mills had apparently continued to operate his gun shop in Harrodsburg during the war, as records indicate that he made gun repairs during the war years. A historical highway marker in Harrodsburg explains that Mills served at the Palmetto Arsenal during the war, but that appears to be erroneous, and was possibly a different Benjamin Mills.

The correspondent began the article by providing a short biography of Mills; much of which I have related in Part I. At the time of the interview Mills was "seventy one years of age," and as was reported, "is still hale and hearty and works daily at his trade of gunmaking."

Mills began his story to the reporter by explaining that although Mills had not observed him, Brown had, "on several occasions...visited the armory." Mills had learned this through the foreman at the barrel department. But, apparently no suspicions were aroused by Brown as, many people came to the armory "through curiosity to see the work and process of gun-making by machinery."

Mills then gave an account of what he understood as the entrance of Brown and his men into Harpers Ferry on the night of October 16, 1859. Although Mills admitted he knew "nothing of the affair until the next morning," he explained how Brown and his men crossed the bridges and shot free black Hayward Shepherd (Mills called him Haywood). Mills also related the capture of George Washington's great-grand nephew Colonel Lewis Washington, as well as neighbor John Alstadt, and that slaves of Washington and Alstad were "impressed" and "compelled to join the party."

Mills's direct observations of the raid came the following morning at about sunrise, when the son of the armory chief clerk Kitzmiller came to Mills's house and reported, "Major, pa' wants you to come down immediately, a mob has taken the armory." Mills followed the boy and on the way met master machinist Armistead Ball. When Mills asked, "Gentlemen, what is the matter?" Kitzmiller responded, "A mob has taken the armory, and I think they are abolitionists."

Mills explained that he thought it must be "a lot of Irish who had been at work on the dam, and getting on a spree had committed to capture the works." Kitzmiller thought Mills was wrong in his suggestion. As they continued toward the armory the party saw a white man and a "mulatto" both armed. When the black man explained that Kitzmiller was his prisoner, the chief clerk advised, "to keep his hands off." The armed raider raised his rifle at Kitzmiller and said, "make another motion and I will blow you through." When asked who the raiders' commander was, the party was brought to Brown and explained, "that is the man."

Brown asked the armory staff, "You have heard of John Brown of Kansas?" to which Ball responded, "I have." "I am that man," said Brown. "I have come to free the negroes-peacefully if I can forcibly if I must."

Mills and his party had been followed to the armory by Ms. Mills and daughter Lizzie. Ms. Mills coolly asked Brown's permission to send Mills his breakfast. Brown responded "Certainly...if you want to, but I am going to furnish breakfast for all the prisoners."

At this point in the article Mills gave a physical description of Brown. "He was an old looking man, fifty nine years of age and stood about, five feet nine or ten inches. He had no teeth, and his hair was rather long. He had a piercing hazel eye, and the whole countenance was expressive of great determination. He was rather thin and slender of build, with quite long legs. He stooped forward from the hips while walking. He wore a heavy beard; dressing in a light colored frock coat. An otter skin cap adorned his head..."

The three men of the armory entered an office and was soon followed by Brown who proposed that if was able to keep the armory he would free all the prisoners. Kitzmiller agreed and started writing out the demands, while Ball said nothing and Mills objected. One of Brown's sons took the document outside to get some signatures when he was shot in the chest with buckshot by a Harpers Ferry citizen. When Brown found out his son was wounded he advised him, "stand it as long as you can. I hope you may get well; if you die, you die honorably."

Firing from the citizens started to pick up and Brown and his hostages went to the small brick fire engine house nearby for protection. Mills explained that Brown's men "seemed but little excited, and appeared to be under fine discipline. They seemed to have a wonderful confidence in Brown." Once inside the engine house the Harpers Ferry citizens "kept up a regular fusillade" on the doors." Mills explained that, "the door, which was one and a quarter inch plank, was soon riddled, hundreds of balls having passed through it." Brown advised his prisoners to find, "the safest place you can I don't wish to hurt you, as you are the only breast-works I have. Without you I would not last two minutes. I know my fate, my life would not be worth a straw." While in the engine house another of Brown's sons was shot. Mills mentioned that Brown again took his son's wounding stoically and that Brown "did not exhibit the least fear during the whole engagement."
Harpers Ferry citizen Colonel Baylor at this point began a parlay with Brown in attempt to free the hostages. Brown said, "Let me take my men and the prisoners as far as the second lock on the Baltimore and Ohio canal. There I will release the prisoners..." Baylor refused and Brown said, "very well.' As evening came on Mills said he "hugged the corner of the engine house very affectionately," and explained, "I amused myself-if it could be called amusement-watching the balls strike the wall after punching through the door."

During the night a cease-fire was agreed to by Colonel Baylor and a militia captain from Frederick, Maryland named Simms. Mills observed during the night that Brown "conversed in low tones with his men, as if trying to inspire them with renewed courage," and that "he also talked with us prisoners..." Mills said, during these conversations, "when the subject of slavery was mentioned he [Brown] lost all patience, declaring that the Southern people were making slaves of their brothers and kinsmen." Mills and the prisoners concluded among themselves that Brown "was crazy on that subject [of slavery]..."

The following morning, "Capt. J.E.B. Stewart [sic-Stuart], of the United States army...arrived from Washington with a letter form Col. Robert E. Lee, demanding the surrender of Brown and his men." Mills predicted that there were about 500 militia and regular troops in Harpers Ferry by this point. Stuart brought the demand letter to Brown at the door of the engine house, but Brown explained that, "I have no glasses, and can not read it; will you read it?" This Stuart did and advised Brown to surrender, which Brown refused. After Stuart left the door Mills explained Brown said, "If they get hold of me my life would not be worth a straw. I know just what they would do with me. They would kill me like a dog." Brown and his men then barricaded the door with the two fire engines.

After informing Brown that Col. Lee would not modify his demands, Stuart again left the door and prepared to storm the engine house. After trying to sledge hammer open the doors the marines retreated, one of which was killed and one was shot in the mouth. One of Brown's men yelled out that he surrendered, but Brown then exclaimed that "Only one man surrenders." After battering down the door with a ladder, the marines entered the engine house. A Lieutenant Green knocked Brown to the floor and "chopped Brown twice on the head. The thick otter-skin cap saved Brown's life, but he was left senseless." Mills said that "Green thought he had killed him, and I also thought the first lunge had gone through Brown's body. But he only struck him on the hip bone, knocking him down." Mills explained that "the fight terminated about 9 o'clock. Brown soon recovered and was taken into my office, where he was questioned by Gov. Wise publicly."

During Wise's interrogation, Brown said, "The freedom of the slaves will all be brought about inside of ten years," to which Wise predictably responded, "I don't want to hear such talk." Brown was asked if he had taken an inventory (census) of African Americans in Jefferson County. Brown replied that, "I did not, but it was taken." Others tried to ask questions of Brown, but Wise said, "Let me do the talking." Concluding the interview, Mills said that Wise told Brown, "I have a much better opinion of you than I expected I would have. I only regret that a man so brave, open and free should be engaged in such a thing as this." Brown retorted, "There's where we differ."

Mills said that a search of the area "found 200 Sharp's rifles, 200 revolvers and 1,000 long pikes. I have now in my possession a rifle and a pike. I also had one of the pistols, but during the late war the Michigan soldiers broke into my gunshop at Harrodsburg and stole it."

Mills concluded his story that, "what I have related came from my own experience and observation." And, his final sentence got to the heart of the matter, and to a certain degree held what I have been searching for; Kentuckians' thoughts on Brown. Mills closed, "I felt sorry for Brown's fate, regarding him as a crazy man on the subject of slavery."

It must be noted again that Mills was reporting what had happened over twenty years after the fact. He probably related some of what he not only observed during his hours of captivity by Brown, but also what he had read of the event in the intervening years and what he had heard during Brown's court case. Years gone by can often cloud one's memory, but Mills's story matches up well with what I have read from other eyewitnesses that were there and I have little reason to doubt this retelling of his experience.

Mills sold his Lexington gunsmith business in 1883 and returned to Harrodsburg. He died five year later and was buried in Spring Hill Cemetery.

It goes without saying that I was happy to find this little historical nugget. To locate an account from a direct eyewitness that was also a Kentuckian is, simply put, extraordinary and fortunate. I think Mills's account will only enhance my project and add to its strength and significance.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Looking for Historical Nuggets-Benjamin Mills Part I

Just finding the time to do research is one thing, but finding a certain elusive source can often be an exercise in futility...and frustration. I guess that's why it is so rewarding when I come across a nugget of a source I had been desperately seeking. Sometimes I just want to jump up in the archives/library and shout, "I FOUND IT!"...just for a cathartic release, and to let every one know.

I took a personal day off from work last week and made a trip to Louisville to do some searching for sources on my current project on Kentuckians' reactions to John Brown's raid. I spent Wednesday morning at the Filson Historical Society where I found some neat things that I will try to share in a later post. The staff at the Filson was very friendly and helpful. It's always pleasant to do research where you feel like your wanted. Unfortunately, I have been to some places where that is not the case. With my search at the Filson exhausted, and after gobbling down a couple of bananas for lunch, I made my way to the Louisville Public Library. I had been searching high and low for a newspaper article from the Louisville Courier-Journal from 1881, but hadn't been able to pin down that specific issue. I had previously checked the microfilm at the Kentucky Historical luck; the Kentucky Department of Libraries and Archives...they didn't have that year; the University of Kentucky..struck out again; and the Filson earlier that day...they had some 1881 issues, but not the one I was seeking. I figured my only two other options would be the public library or perhaps the Courier-Journal offices. But since the library was only a few blocks from the Filson, I gave it a shot first. BOOM! Sure enough they had it.

I had found this particular source in the footnotes of a biography of John Brown that I had read several months ago. According to the footnotes this specific article was in the Oswald Garrison Villard (an early Brown biographer) papers at Harvard. Obviously, I had little opportunity to get to Boston, so I was happy to find the article here in Kentucky. The article was a recollection of the Harper's Ferry raid as viewed by an eyewitness and a Brown hostage during the raid, who also happened to be a Kentuckian, Benjamin Mills. I had learned a little about Mills while doing research at Harpers Ferry National Historical Park back in June, but I really wanted to locate this eyewitness account...even though it was 22 years after the event.

I had also previously found a short article from the November 4, 1859 issue of the Kentucky Statesman that announced the return of Mills to Kentucky from Harpers Ferry. Here is that short article in full:
"We had the pleasure of taking by the hand, on yesterday, our friend Mr. B Mills, late Master of the Armory, at Harper's Ferry, and formerly a Gunsmith of high reputation, at Harrodsburg, Ky. Mr. M had resigned his office at Harper's Ferry, on the 10th of last month [actually October 8, 1859], his resignation to take effect on the first inst. [November], and remained there just long enough to fall into the hands of the insurgents, by whom he was taken prisoner, as our readers have seen by the published accounts. He brings with him specimens of the arms prepared and used by the insurgent; and his account of the details of the affair at the ferry is very interesting. He returns to Kentucky for the purpose of resuming his business at Harrodsburg."

Benjamin Mills was born in Rensselaer County, New York in 1810 and apparently learned to gunsmith from other gun makers when he moved to Canada, and where he married Jane O'Conner in 1835. In 1838 the couple moved to Mays Lick, Kentucky (Mason County). After a couple of years there they moved to Stanford (Lincoln County) where they lived for about four years before landing in Harrodsburg (Mercer County). Mills operated a gunsmith shop in Harrodsburg for about 14 years before being appointed Master Armorer at Harper's Ferry on October 19, 1858, by then Secretary of War John B. Floyd. A few month's later Alfred M. Barbour was named the arsenal superintendent, Mills's boss. Mills must have either been thin-skinned or honor-bound, or both, because when Barbour took a leave of absence in the fall of 1859 he left Chief Clerk Archibald M. Kitzmiller, not Mills in charge of the armory. Offended, Mills submitted his resignation on October 8, 1859 to take effect on November 1, 1859.

Mills was merely biding his time to return to Kentucky when John Brown and his raiders struck on the night of October 16. Little did he know when he resigned a week before that such tumult would hit the small Virginia town and that he would be caught up in it.

In the next post I will share some of the highlights of Mills's story as he told it to the Courier-Journal correspondent in 1881.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Ruffin Predicted an Abolitionist Invasion of happen in 1868!

When reading about the leading proponents of Southern secession during the antebellum era, one is struck by the uniqueness that is Edmund Ruffin. Ruffin was of course known as a leading agricultural reformer in the South and that fact was largely due to his writing. Along with his path-breaking Essay on Calcerous Manuers, Ruffin also edited the Farmer's Register, an agricultural journal, and Essays and Notes on Agriculture, which was a description of farming methods on his own Marlbourne plantation. Ruffin's writing before the Civil War was not limited to advice on planting though. Ruffin also examined race and slavery issues. He wrote a number of articles for DeBow's Review, including "The Effects of High Prices of Slaves," and "Equality of the Races-Haytien and British Experiments." In addition, he also composed works that sought to bring to fruition his greatest dream; Southern independence. In 1860 Ruffin turned futuristic novelist in effort to advance his primary goal.

In late February of that year Ruffin started writing Anticipations of the Future to Serve as Lessons for the Present Time. Ruffin got the idea for writing the book after reading a recently published novel that forecast the results of secession. Ruffin privately admitted in his diary that it was a "very foolish book" but thought that "the subject promised something, & the idea might be carried out to good purpose."

Ruffin's novel began four years in the future (1864), and took the form of news reports sent back to England from a British correspondent. The book boldly, but incorrectly predicted that William H. Seward would replace Abraham Lincoln in 1864 as president after Lincoln had served one term. After a significant number of outrages by the Black Republican government during Seward's first term, including the blockade of Southern harbors, civil war broke out in the spring of 1868. While Ruffin's timing for the war was off a few years, he did focus on Charleston as would actually be the case in 1861. He also presciently pointed out the importance of the upper-South states to the Southern cause, as well as the importance of the western rivers.

But, the event I found most interesting and relevant to my current research was Ruffin's prediction that a white and African American abolitionist army would invade Kentucky in the summer of 1868. Leading this invasion was none other than Owen Brown, son on John Brown. Owen was the only surviving son of Brown that participated in the Harpers Ferry raid. Ruffin wrote, "The associated northern abolitionists, having abiding and strong faith in the name and blood of the martyr John Brown, had sought out his son to command the strong force designed to excite the work of insurrection in Kentucky." Ruffin forecast that General Brown would bring 3500 abolitionists, of which 2700 were black, to invade the Bluegrass state. In Ruffin's novel, Kentucky had seceded prior to this invasion, but had initially only 1000 men to guard the border of the Ohio River. Ruffin identified Kentucky abolitionist John G. Fee in the story as aiding and abetting the invading abolitionists with important information. Also brought into the story was that Owen Brown and his men carried 10,000 muskets and pikes to give to any slaves who would join their effort.

Ruffin had the invaders laying waste to the land and slaughtering men, women and children as they moved into the Commonwealth. Quickly though, things started to turn against the marauders. Ruffin's story explains that Brown's invading force started to melt away as the blacks that joined him began to desert. The reason they had joined in the first place according to Ruffin was to "escape their miserable condition [in the North]-and in the hope of thus being enabled to get to the southern state whence they had formerly absconded, to flee to the North-and when there, to return to their former respective homes and servitude. Or, if not, then to slavery to any southern master, rather than continue free and starving with cold and hunger at the North." Ruffin explained that some slaves ran off to join the invading army as it moved into Kentucky but the vast majority, "seemed to be as much alarmed as their masters, and fully as anxious to get out of the way of the invaders."

Ruffin declared that General Brown was disappointed in the few number of black recruits in Kentucky, and explained that was because, "they [slaves] will rarely incur risk of personal danger to join new and doubtful allies-and never sustain a weak and losing cause." Obviously, Ruffin used his observation skills from the Harpers Ferry raid to make this statement. According to Ruffin, Brown's misjudgment could be blamed on his (and all other Northerners) ignorance of blacks and their character.

Slowly the Kentucky militia forces formed and were provided with ammunition and arms. It is another point of interest that Ruffin notes Kentucky's lack of military preparedness, and shows how well read he was on the issues of the day. In the wake of Harpers Ferry, Kentuckians of all stations declared emphatically the impotence of the state militia and the need for its reorganization.

On the fifth day of the invasion the raiders finally met Kentucky resistance. The white leaders of the invaders were placed in advanced positions to act as examples for their remaining black troops and necessarily took high casualties. When night fell the Kentuckians made an attack on Brown's troops causing more casualties to the invaders. The following morning Brown noticed that more of his troops had deserted, but he decided to keep advancing and as he did he lost more men. Ruffin described that the Kentuckians particularly despised the whites in the raiding force. "To these [whites] so violent was the hatred of the Kentuckians, and their thirst for vengeance, that it was obvious that they reserved their shots for the whites, and deemed them throw away on the negro soldiers, whom they had learned to hold in contempt."

A general was named for the established Kentucky forces and reinforcements poured in, swelling their numbers to 1500 to give battle the abolitionists. The Kentucky general (called General A) had retreated before the advancing invaders, but finally selected ground of his choosing to stop and battle. "General Brown's white followers, and a few of the negroes, fought bravely and desperately. But the negroes generally showed no ardor or disposition for fighting." The Kentuckians advanced and broke the invaders ranks and "the negroes threw away their arms, which nearly all had ceased to use, and which impeded their flight." All the blacks that surrendered begged for mercy and were spared. "But the whites, whether surrendering or continuing to resist, were put to death, either instantly, or later, when it was known that they were whites, and the leaders and deceivers of the misguided negroes." The Kentuckians lost only 100 men while the invaders lost ten times that amount, mostly in captured African Americans.

After the battle yet more reinforcements arrived for the Kentucky army which brought their numbers to 2500. The Kentuckians set out to capture all of the invaders that they could catch. Among those caught was General Owen Brown, whose leg had been shattered by a bullet. Brown demanded to be treated as a military prisoner who had been commissioned by the president. General A informed him his rank would certainly be respected by hanging him higher than his subordinates. In lieu of unavailable hemp ropes, the Kentuckians used grapevines to hang their enemies. Brown and twenty-seven of his officers were hanged and later devoured by vultures.

Efforts were continued to round up the invaders. "It was thought that not one escaped death in the field, or capture, of the 3500 men who entered Kentucky, or of the 400 slaves who soon afterward joined them. Of the 800 whites, every one was killed, or, if captured, was afterward hung. Of the negroes, nearly 300 had voluntarily deserted, and had surrendered themselves, separately, or in small parties, before the battle-and 1200 of them had been made prisoners." And, "nearly 1900 negroes were either restored to their former masters or sold."

Anticipations of the Future covered events up to 1870 (ten year in the future from when it was written) when the South won its independence. The last sentence of the 416 page book clearly explains Ruffin's and many other Southern secessionists' stance in 1860. "If these [Southern] states are to be successfully defended in the possession of their property, their political rights, and everything dear to freemen, or if they are to be preserved as a future antegral portion, and the border bulwark of a southern confederacy, it must be secured by the more southern [Gulf coast] states, seceding first, and speedily."

If you are interested in reading Anticipations of the Future, you can easily find it on Google Books in full.