Sunday, February 12, 2012

War in the Border States

I ran across an excerpt from the diary of twenty-two year old Confederate sympathizer Mary Louisa Kealhofer, known to friends as "Lutie," who lived in Hagerstown, Maryland during the Civil War. Lutie's father was the president of the Hagerstown Gas Light Company and her fiance was a Confederate officer. The thoughts she expresses are wise beyond her one score and two years of age and provide a perfect example of the type of war that intruded upon many in the Border States.

She wrote during the Gettysburg campaign,"These are stirring times-one hour we are under Jeff Davis-the next under Abraham & before the good Union people have time to congratulate themselves upon their release from Rebel rule in dashes a squad of these impudent Rebels and Jeff claims us again. So the world goes."

These same words could have just as easily been thought and uttered by anyone that lived in the upper South states of Kentucky, Maryland, Missouri, western and northern Virginia and part of Tennessee. Some towns changed hands many times and citizens feared reprisals from neighbors as much as from armies.

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