American Civil War Collection

Description

Following the November 1860 election of Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865) as President of the United States, seven states in which slavery was legal individually seceded from the Union. They did so because of Lincoln’s opposition to the expansion of slavery in the western United States. South Carolina, Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, and Texas declared themselves the Confederate States of America (C.S.A.), and established a capital first in Montgomery, Alabama and then in Richmond, Virginia.

War broke out in March 1861 with the Battle of Fort Sumter near Charleston, South Carolina. Waged between 1861 and 1865, the American Civil War caused at least 1,030,000 casualties, including about 620,000 soldier deaths.

The items in this collection are a selection of documents and ephemera created during, and often about, the American Civil War.

View the items in the American Civil War Collection.

Pictured above: detail of Traitor. Patriot, 1861-1865, A1985/012/0563.

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Collection Items

Letter from Worshipful Master Elwood Evans of Olympia Lodge, No. 1, 1864 July 30
Letter from Worshipful Master Elwood Evans of Olympia Lodge, No. 1. Dated July 30, 1864. This letter from Elwood Evand, the Worshipful Master of Olympia Lodge, No. 1, warns the Fraternity to be wary of Masonic imposter "O. H. Treat, Tweed, or Treed,"

Circular letter from William Hobart Hadley to Mosaic Lodge, No. 52, 1864 September 20
Circular letter from the Masonic Mission to Mosaic Lodge, No. 52. September 20, 1864. In this circular letter, William Hobart Hadley, the Vice President of the Masonic Mission in Maine, and Agent for the New England States, reminds the Fraternity…

Letter from Winyah Lodge, No. 40, to Pacific Lodge, No. 45, 1873 June 04
Letter from Winyah Lodge, No. 40, to Pacific Lodge, No. 45. Dated June 04, 1873. In this letter, Winyah Lodge, No. 40, describes how white Union soldiers of the 15th Maine torched their lodge building in response to being “relieved by a Battalion of…
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