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Questions and Answers

Women in the Civil War?

Hey. I have a project due tomarrow and it's about the women in the civil war. Let me know if you know any women who were really important in the civil war. Thanx!
Some good examples would be spies, soldiers, nurses.

Posted by ~Autumn~
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Heres a bit if your paper is due tomorrow, its been a while since I wrote anything school related but heres a shot for you!

Civil War Women, Spies, Nurses Ect.

About Rose O'Neal Greenhow.

Rose O'Neal Greenhow was born in Montgomery County, Maryland in 1817. "Wild Rose", as she was called from a young age, was a leader in Washington society, a passionate secessionist, and one of the most renowned spies in the Civil War. Among her accomplishments was the secret message she sent to General Pierre G.T. Beauregard which ultimately caused him to win the battle of Bull Run. She spied so successfully for the Confederacy that Jefferson Davis credited her with winning the battle of Manassas.

She was imprisoned for her efforts first in her own home and then in the Old Capital Prison. Despite her confinement, Greenhow continued getting messages to the Confederacy by means of cryptic notes which traveled in unlikely places such as the inside of a woman's bun of hair. After her second prison term, she was exiled to the Confederate states where she was received warmly by President Jefferson Davis.

Her next mission was to tour Britain and France as a propagandist for the Confederate cause. Two months after her arrival in London, her memoirs were published and enjoyed a wide sale throughout the British Isles. In Europe, Greenhow found a strong sympathy for the South, especially among the ruling classes. During the course of her travels she hobnobbed with many members of the nobility. In Paris, she was received into the court of Napoleon III and was granted an audience with the Emperor at the Tuileries. Rose's diary (August 5, 1863 – August 10, 1864), held in the North Carolina State Archives in Raleigh, NC, describes her mission in great detail.

In 1864, after a year abroad, she boarded the Condor, a British blockade-runner which was to take her home. Just before reaching her destination, the vessel ran aground at the mouth of the Cape Fear River near Wilmington, North Carolina. In order to avoid the Union gunboat that pursued her ship, Rose fled in rowboat, but never made it to shore. Her little boat capsized and she was dragged down by the weight of the gold she received in royalties for her book.

In October 1864, Rose was buried with full military honors in the Oakdale Cemetery in Wilmington. Her coffin was wrapped in the Confederate flag and carried by Confederate troops. The marker for her grave, a marble cross, bears the epitaph, "Mrs. Rose O'N. Greenhow, a bearer of dispatchs [sic] to the Confederate Government."

About Sarah Thompson

Sarah Lane was born February 11, 1838 in Greene County, Tennessee. In 1854, Sarah married Sylvanius H.Thompson and they had two children. Sylvanius later became a private in the 1st Tennessee Calvary U.S.A., where he served primarily as a recruiter for the Union Army. Sarah worked alongside her husband assembling and organizing Union sympathizers in a predominately rebel area around Greeneville, Tennessee. In early 1864, Sylvanius Thompson was ambushed and killed by a Confederate soldier. Spurred by her husband's death, Sarah Thompson continued her work for the Union, delivering dispatches and recruiting information to Union officers. When CSA General John Hunt Morgan and his men spent the night in Greeneville, Sarah managed to slip away and alert Union forces to his whereabouts. Union troops invaded the area and by her accounts, she personally pointed out Morgan hiding behind a garden fence to a Union soldier who proceeded to kill Morgan.

After this event, Sarah served as an army nurse in Knoxville, Tennessee and in Cleveland, Ohio. She supported herself and her daughters by giving lectures in several northern cities about her experiences during the war. In 1866 she married Orville J. Bacon of Broome County, New York and had two children with him. They were subsequently divorced and she married James Cotton in the 1880s. Cotton died, leaving her once again a single mother. After the war, Sarah's life was marked by the constant struggle to find suitable employment to support her family and to claim a pension for her services during the war. She worked through many temporary appointments in the federal government and eventually was granted a pension of $12 a month by order of a special act of Congress in 1897. She died on April 21, 1909 after being struck by an "electric car" in Washington, D.C., and was buried in the Arlington National Cemetery.

For more biographical information on Sarah Thompson, please refer to the following:

Hoehling, A. A. Women Who Spied. New York: Dodd, Mead & Co., 1967.
Burgner, Goldene Fillers. Morgan's Defeat. Greeneville, TN: GF Burgner. 1983.


About the collection at Duke

The collection of Sarah Thompson Papers consists of 137 items spanning from 1855 to 1904. The collection centers around the murder of Thompson's husband, her intelligence work for the Union army which led to the defeat of Confederate General John Hunt Morgan, and her subsequent post-war struggles against poverty, largely as a single mother.

Letters among Sarah and various family members give insights to her everyday life as a working mother and the supportive relationships she enjoyed with her sister and her second husband Orville Bacon's family. Sarah Thompson's own handwritten account of Morgan's defeat details her spying activities. Her account is further substantiated with letters from several Union officers who testify to her great service as a Union spy, a hospital nurse, and a devoted patriot to the cause. There are numerous letters from soldiers to Sarah after she fled north for her safety after Morgan's defeat.

Thompson's attempts to exploit her Civil War services in order to raise money to support her family are well-documented. Letters to Sarah from publishers and various townsfolk show that she gave numerous public lectures and tried to publish her story during the late 1860s. An amazing series of appointment and layoff notices in the late 1870s reflect her employment in a series of temporary positions within various government departments. Several war officers write letters of recommendations in an attempt to gain more solid employment for her. Frustration with low wages, frequent lay offs, and single motherhood culminate in a passionate letter to her employer where she pleads her war service should make her worthy of better treatment.

During this time period there are also documents supporting her bid for a pension for her war services. Testimonials from war officers are gathered in her favor. Letters to and from family members reflect her struggle to get assistance from elected government officials to represent her case. Eventually a bill is introduced and passed in 1897 which gives her a pension allowance of $12 per month for her services as a hospital nurse.


Civil War Women
On-line Archival Collections
Special Collections Library, Duke University


Rose O'Neal Greenhow Papers
Rose O'Neal Greenhow was born in Montgomery County, Maryland in 1817. "Wild Rose", as she was called from a young age, was a leader in Washington society, a passionate secessionist, and one of the most renowned spies in the Civil War. The collection is mostly correspondence with Rose Greenhow related to her activities on behalf of the Confederate States of America, and contains both scanned images and transcripts of her letters.
Alice Williamson Diary
This small, leather-bound volume is the 36-page diary kept by schoolgirl Alice Williamson at Gallatin, Tennessee from February to September 1864. The main topic of the diary is the occupation of Gallatin and the surrounding region by Union forces under General Eleazer A. Paine. Both scanned images and transcripts of the diary pages are available here.

Sarah E. Thompson Papers
Sarah E. Thompson (1838-1909) worked alongside her husband (a recruiter for the Union Army) assembling and organizing Union sympathizers in a predominately rebel area around Greeneville, Tennessee. After he was killed in 1864, she continued to work for the Union, providing intelligence that in one case led to the capture of a Confederate General. This collection includes transcripts and scanned images of correspondence that contains testimonials of Thompson's services to the Federal government and her subsequent post-war struggles against poverty.

Civil War Women: Primary Sources on the Internet

Diaries, Letters, Documents
Photographs and Prints
As a result of the Duke bibliography Women and the Civil War, we consistently receive requests from students and teachers who would like to see primary sources on this topic available to them via the Internet. In response, we have begun to transcribe and scan some of our manuscript collections which document women's experiences in the Civil War. Given the wealth of information about the Civil War already on the Internet, there is a relatively small amount of material that reflects women's lives and experiences during this time period. Below are links to primary sources on the Internet that are directly related to women and the Civil War. We encourage archivists, project staff, and Civil War enthusiasts to network more women's collections!

Tell us about other sites to add to this list!

Diaries, Letters, and Other Documents
Alice Williamson Diary, 1864
Diary of a 16 year old rebel girl living in Gallatin, Tennessee during Union occupation of the area. Transcription and scanned image of original document held by the Special Collections Library at Duke University.
Rose O'Neal Greenhow Papers, 1861-1864
Letters from Greenhow, a Confederate spy, to Jefferson Davis, Alexander Boteler, and others regarding war activities. Also several newspaper articles describing her imprisonment in 1861 and her death in 1864. Transcriptions and scanned images of original documents held in the Special Collections Library at Duke University.
Rachel Cormany Diary, June 14-July 6, 1863
An excerpt of this Franklin County, PA., woman's diary describing the town of Chambersburg during the Gettysburg campaign. Taken from The Cormany Diaries: A Northern Family in the Civil War, James C. Mohr, editor, Richard E. Winslow, III, assistant editor, (Pittsburg, University of Pittsburg Press, 1982), pp. 328-341. Part of the Valley of the Shadow project.
Carrie Berry Diary August 1, 1864-January 4, 1865
Passages from the diary of a 10 yr. Old Atlanta girl describe the immediate affects of the War on her and her family. Transcription of original diary provided by the Atlanta Historical Center.
Civil War Reminiscences by Catharine Hunsecker
Transcription of a narrative which gives some general information about Hunsecker's life, but mainly focuses on the events of the Civil War and the affect it had on her community in Franklin County, PA. Part of the Valley of the Shadow project.
Sallie Seeper Scott Letter, April 15, 1865
Transcription of a love letter from Sallie Seeper Scott of "Lower Chanceford" (York Co., PA), to Robert Bennett, Chief Carpenter Shop in Washington, D.C. Original held in the Special Collections Department of the University Libraries at Virginia Tech. Part of their on-line collection of Civil War Love Letters.
Memoir of Alansa Rounds Sterrett, c.1859-1865.
Transcription of original memoir housed in the Augusta County Historical Society. Alansa Rounds Sterrett was Jedediah Hotchkiss' niece and a teacher at Loch Willow Academy during the Civil War. A Northerner, Alansa Rounds married Franklin F. Sterrett, a friend of Hotchkiss' and a Confederate cavalry officer. Part of the Valley of the Shadow project.
10th South Carolina Ladies Auxiliary
This is a website for Civil War "re-enactresses" that contains a wealth of primary source information about women during the war. Site includes links to several WPA memoirs of South Carolina women during the war, detailed information about fashion and fabrics of the times, and a bibliography of suggested readings.
The Ladies Union Aid Society of St. Louis
Produced by a women's Civil War reenacting group, this site provides a history of the LUAS which contains excerpts from original documents related to the creation and work of the Society. Includes references to specific women such as Anna Clapp and Jesse Freement, but also illustrates the work of the many unnamed women who aided soldiers. Also has a bibliography for further reading.
Nancy Emerson Diary, 1862
Memoranda of events and thoughts of woman living in Augusta County, Virginia. Transcription and scanned images of the original manuscript diary held in the Alderman Library at the University of Virginia. Part of the Valley of the Shadow project.

Good luck and I hope this helps!!

Farmhouse bed and breakfast?

We are looking for a long weekend at a farm bed and breakfast with some horse riding if poss a place with sheep, and county side or the seaside in cornwall ,middle of september this year,anybody no a good place, its for me and my husband,

Posted by MICHAEL H
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I live in a gorgeous part of Cornwall, but unfortunately, I only have 1 bedroom, so when relatives come to stay, they always stay at Lansallos, which is my favourite small village in Cornwall.It's in the middle of nowhere, but has a gorgeous secluded beach, (a little waterfall spills onto the beach ) and miles and miles of Country lanes to get lost down. There is a wonderful riding school not far away in St Veep, where my daughter works, and the gorgeous village of Lerryn is also close by. (I live in Lerryn.) There are many lovely resorts nearby, like Polperro, Looe, Fowey, Polruan, and of course the Eden Project, and the Lost Gardens of Helligan. You have the best of both worlds here, beautiful Countyside, and also the sea. As an added plus, Lansallos is only 30 miles over the Tamar bridge, so if you are only here for a long weekend, it's not hours of extra travelling. I PROMISE you, it's gorgeous.


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