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The Iron Brigade, Old Abe and Military Affairs

Between 1860 and 1861, eleven Southern states defied the authority of the U.S. government and seceded from the Union, asserting a doctrine of states' rights. Ironically though, for several years before the war, Wisconsin had been the most thoroughgoing champion of states' rights. Unlike the Southern states, however, Wisconsin had used the doctrine in opposition to, rather than in support of, slavery. States' rights had been the basis of the Wisconsin Supreme Court's decision to nullify the 1850 Fugitive Slave Act after the controversy surrounding the fugitive slave Joshua Glover (see "Abolitionism and Other Social Reforms").

When war broke out... more...

Original Documents and Other Primary Sources

Link to article: A Wisconsin officer refuses to give slaves back to their owners (2), 1862  A Wisconsin officer refuses to give slaves back to their owners (2), 1862
Link to article: A 14-year-old Wisconsin boy fights in the Civil War  A 14-year-old Wisconsin boy fights in the Civil War
Link to article: An interview with a Black soldier among Wisconsin troops in the Civil War.  An interview with a Black soldier among Wisconsin troops in the Civil War.
Link to article: A Wisconsin officer refuses to give slaves back to their owners (1), 1862  A Wisconsin officer refuses to give slaves back to their owners (1), 1862
Link to article: A teenage nurse at the front, 1863-1864  A teenage nurse at the front, 1863-1864
Link to article: More than 200 Wis. newspaper stories about the war  More than 200 Wis. newspaper stories about the war
Link to article: Leonard Farwell, seeing Lincoln killed, saves Vice President Johnson  Leonard Farwell, seeing Lincoln killed, saves Vice President Johnson
Link to article: The Iron Brigade recalled by a veteran, 20 years after the war  The Iron Brigade recalled by a veteran, 20 years after the war
Link to article: The Civil War diary of a private from Sheboygan County  The Civil War diary of a private from Sheboygan County
Link to article: A Wisconsin logger saves the Union fleet in 1864  A Wisconsin logger saves the Union fleet in 1864
Link to article: Wisconsin Governor Jeremiah Rusk (1830-1893)  Wisconsin Governor Jeremiah Rusk (1830-1893)
Link to article: Memories by a Wisconsin commander of Black troops in the Civil War.  Memories by a Wisconsin commander of Black troops in the Civil War.
Link to artifacts: A Tiffany punch bowl in honor of Bailey's heroics  A Tiffany punch bowl in honor of Bailey's heroics
Link to artifacts: A feather from war eagle Old Abe  A feather from war eagle Old Abe
Link to artifacts: An iron collar removed from a fugitive slave by Wisconsin soldiers in 1862  An iron collar removed from a fugitive slave by Wisconsin soldiers in 1862
Link to book: Roster of Wisconsin Civil War Soldiers, vol. I  Roster of Wisconsin Civil War Soldiers, vol. I
Link to book: A Wisconsin soldier recounts the Battle of Gettysburg for his family.  A Wisconsin soldier recounts the Battle of Gettysburg for his family.
Link to book: A guide to the battles and engagements fought by Wisconsin troops.  A guide to the battles and engagements fought by Wisconsin troops.
Link to book: The history and traditions of the Chippewa Valley  The history and traditions of the Chippewa Valley
Link to book: The roster of Wisconsin's only unit of black Civil War soldiers  The roster of Wisconsin's only unit of black Civil War soldiers
Link to book: The only Wisconsin unit of Black soldiers in the Civil War  The only Wisconsin unit of Black soldiers in the Civil War
Link to book: Names of ex-soldiers and sailors residing in Wisconsin, 1895  Names of ex-soldiers and sailors residing in Wisconsin, 1895
Link to book: Names of ex-soldiers and sailors residing in Wisconsin, 1905  Names of ex-soldiers and sailors residing in Wisconsin, 1905
Link to book: Roster of Wisconsin Civil War Soldiers, vol. II  Roster of Wisconsin Civil War Soldiers, vol. II
Link to book: Alphabetical index to all Wisconsin Civil War soldiers  Alphabetical index to all Wisconsin Civil War soldiers
Link to book: Official List of Wisconsin Soldiers Killed in the Civil War  Official List of Wisconsin Soldiers Killed in the Civil War
Link to book: Names of ex-soldiers and sailors residing in Wisconsin, 1885  Names of ex-soldiers and sailors residing in Wisconsin, 1885
Link to book: An 1875 history of the Chippewa Valley  An 1875 history of the Chippewa Valley
Link to images: A photo of former slave Peter Thomas  A photo of former slave Peter Thomas
Link to images: More than 100 photographs and other pictures from the Civil War  More than 100 photographs and other pictures from the Civil War
Link to images: An 1887 portrait of General and Governor Lucius Fairchild  An 1887 portrait of General and Governor Lucius Fairchild
Link to manuscript: Letters by relatives of Laura Ingalls Wilder, 1861-1919  Letters by relatives of Laura Ingalls Wilder, 1861-1919
Link to manuscript: A Wisconsin soldier recounts the removal of a slave's iron collar  A Wisconsin soldier recounts the removal of a slave's iron collar
Link to manuscript: Gettysburg day-by-day (June 30-July 6, 1863)  Gettysburg day-by-day (June 30-July 6, 1863)
Link to manuscript: A Wisconsin soldier writes a prison poem on envelopes, 1863  A Wisconsin soldier writes a prison poem on envelopes, 1863
Link to manuscript: A Wisconsin soldier writes home from the war, 1863  A Wisconsin soldier writes home from the war, 1863
Link to manuscript: A Rock Co. soldier writes home, 1862-1865  A Rock Co. soldier writes home, 1862-1865
Link to manuscript: A Wisconsin soldier describes being a prisoner of war, 1863-1865  A Wisconsin soldier describes being a prisoner of war, 1863-1865

Primary Sources Available Elsewhere

Link to book: All official records of the Union and Confederate Armies  All official records of the Union and Confederate Armies
Link to book: All official records of the Union and Confederate Navies  All official records of the Union and Confederate Navies
Link to book: Wisconsin Blue Books  Wisconsin Blue Books
Link to collections: An online exhibit from the Wisconsin Veterans Museum  An online exhibit from the Wisconsin Veterans Museum
Link to collections: Manuscripts from Wisconsin soldiers and citizens during the Civil War  Manuscripts from Wisconsin soldiers and citizens during the Civil War
Link to collections: First person narratives from Wisconsin soldiers and citizens  First person narratives from Wisconsin soldiers and citizens
Link to images: "Old Abe," mascot of the 8th Wisconsin Infantry  "Old Abe," mascot of the 8th Wisconsin Infantry
Link to manuscript: Gov. Edward Salomon's request for volunteers, 1862  Gov. Edward Salomon's request for volunteers, 1862
Link to manuscript: A Wisconsin soldier witnesses the Fugitive Slave Law in action, 1862  A Wisconsin soldier witnesses the Fugitive Slave Law in action, 1862
Link to manuscript: A soldier writes the governor about conditions among the troops, 1862  A soldier writes the governor about conditions among the troops, 1862
Link to manuscript: A letter suggesting amendments to the Conscription Law, 1865  A letter suggesting amendments to the Conscription Law, 1865
Link to manuscript: A former slave recounts his time in Wisconsin  A former slave recounts his time in Wisconsin

Related Links

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