Skip to main content

tv   The Civil War Loudoun County Virginia during the Civil War  CSPAN  November 9, 2022 10:29am-12:03pm EST

10:29 am
resources and step-by-step guide. >> c-span now is a free mobile app featuring your unfiltered view of what is happening in washington live and on demand. keep up with a day's biggest events with live reports of floor proceedings on the congress. white house, events courts, campaigns and more from the world of politics. all your fingertips. can also stay current with the latest episodes of washington journal and find scheduling information for c-span tv networks, and c-span radio. plus, a variety of compelling podcasts. c-span now is available the apple store and google play and will be downloaded for free today. c-span, now, your front row seat to washington. anytime, anywhere. >> weekends on c-span two are anintellectual feast.
10:30 am
every saturday american history tv documents america story. and on, sundays book tv brings you the latest and books and authors. you are cities come from these television companies ever more including hobbes. >> homework can be hard because squatting in a diner for internet work is even harder. that is why we are providing lower income students access to affordable internet. so homework can just be homework. but cox connect to compete. >> cox, along with these television, companies supports c-span 2 as a public service. >> good evening and welcome to tonight's history on tap program. for those of you are not familiar with the history on tap serious, what we have been doing for the last two years now, congratulations on her anniversary, guys, two years old. thank you. thank you. what is the two year anniversary? gift which we'll get each other?
10:31 am
>> beer. that sounds, good beer works. joe, anne-marie, and i have been traveling around two different breweries and wineries and other establishments throughout the area, telling stories of local history. kind of the weird, the wild, the unusual, the interesting. stories have slipped through the cracks when it comes to talking about our local history. at a historic site, lovely harrison. this house has a lot of historic significance to the american civil war, which will definitely get into as we move forward this evening. but before, we do i want to turn the mic over to joe, here. >> good, evening everyone. for history on tap alive at harrison hall. my name is joe, rizzo executive director of the loudoun heritage farm museum located in
10:32 am
downtown -- i am joined by travis shaw, director of education. and also the best dresser of the group. he goes inflated the c-span crew compliments his hair in his short when he arrives. >> they just said i look cool, let's not inflated. >> it was not the, crew it was one person. >> that is accurate. that is accurate. >> let's not get too carried away. >> it'll be 150 people by the time this story is over. and i'm also joined by anne marie, anne marie chirieleison, who was the executive director of the farm museum. and -- >> i would say that nobody said i look cool, yet but it's fine. it's fine. >> her husband is in the front row. , mike you've got, us buddy? and, now since this is our second annual fund-raiser, we have to bring in the big guns to celebrate. our special guest for tonight's data, either of civil war times. dana shoaf.
10:33 am
the >> that is a lot of pressure. i am a little terrified because i've not been out of the house much, like many of you. >> you look like. it you look at. >> so, they say you should never follow dogs or babies on stage while you should never complete with travis's hair as we have already heard. so i thought i should groom myself a little bit before i come down here and i grabbed this little razor for my bailed. beard. and i made one round of the battery ran out and i'm just thankful i made one circus. because i finally got halfway across, that would have been even worse. i try to hang in there, it gets the silver fox. i do what i can. nice to meet you all. as it was said i am the editor of civil war times. i also work as the historian and there for several or trails. in my free time.
10:34 am
it's a pleasure to be, here i've never been here before. this is a beautiful beautiful place. >> and if you want to see the evolution of travis's hair, we do have a youtube channel which has a lot of history on tap they can see a growth here at the pandemic. a way to spend a time when we were all stuck at home. >> yeah. yeah. >> how this works is we will each tell a short story about very local history. particularly civil war history, since we are at a historic harrison home. but we do want to say a big thank you to alex man, the owners of the property for letting us use this beautiful property for the show tonight. . and we would also like to thank dynasty grooming, located in downtown harrisburg -- for the beer that we are having tonight. i will give a shout out to the loudoun museum upon teen ale available through the month of october. proceeds benefit the museum.
10:35 am
and benefit, you because it is a great -- it is available, tonight all month at the -- brewery. i am drinking the haunting sale, and i will be telling a story that looks at political prisoners from loudoun county throughout the war. travis, what are you going to talk about? >> i am also drinking the haunting sail, cannot recommend it enough. it is delicious. i'm gonna tell the story of a local soldier during the civil war. and his run of luck, both good and bad through the civil war, that puts him in a lot of very difficult circumstances. >> i am going to tell the story of a union soldier who became an accidental tourist. and was admiring a view when he ran afoul of a well-known confederate guerrilla. >> what are you drinking? >> i am freaking the dynasty lager, which is amazing. >> there you go. >> yeah, it's really. good this is my third one -- no.
10:36 am
>> i am also having the dynasty lager. and i will be kicking off our program tonight by talking a little bit about harrison hall and some of the stories for which it is well known. however, i hope that the focus of my story will be new to those of you who are familiar with harrison hall, or maybe have some new little bits included thrown in. so, to begin off, harrison hall, often is the glenfiddich house, has its origins in the last part of the 18th century. as you are looking at the house, now there is a portion on the far right that is about one and a half or two stories tall and which dates to about 1780, when lieber was really just being built up and as one visiting englishman famously said, it was a badly organized kind of ramshackle town. for more on that, you can ask travis about nicolas cross, well and his drinking binges.
10:37 am
however, harrison hall had a relatively humble beginning. by the 1830's a gentleman by the name of henry tabs well harrison move into this property with his second wife, mary jones harrison. and it is he who added on the addition that we see here at the core of the building. this structure that we see here and the second of the two buildings behind. it and of, course they land we are sitting on currently and back to the block behind you. he built the house, ostensibly so he and his growing family could fit into last cramps quarters because they did have eight children. it is not that easy to fit a children and two adults into the far-right portion of the building what you see here. so they must of been a little bit more comfortable having the luxury stake available to them. they all course did also have enslaved workers living at the household with them. as well as working on their
10:38 am
properties. now, henry caswell harrison was a member of the prominent harrison family of virginia, and his wife, mary, was not only a. drones her father was a prominent attorney. she also is the grand daughter of charles lee. so henry did pretty well for himself, marrying into the drones and the league families. with their eight children they have a very merry household. unfortunately for them there is a civil war that happens. i think you have probably heard of it. and henry finds that his family is also divided along these wart lines. his wives family, the joneses, live in washington, d.c.. and while certain members of her family are pro secession and pro virginia, there are others, including her own father, who are pro union. and to count secession as a double treason, not just against the united states but also against the home state of virginia. so some of the family members
10:39 am
are going to leave d.c. to stay here, at harrison hall, with the family during the war. i think they are taking a gamble that with their house being watched in d.c., they can live a little bit more freely here in loudoun. they may also be thinking that they can get away from the capital. and hopefully get away from the war. unfortunately for, than the war is going to come to luis berke in the fall of 1861. >> of, course by the fall of 1861 the country has already seen one terrible large battle, the first battle of fun as us. little did i know it is gonna come creeping right back in october. the northern side of the -- virginia on the lease birx either kind of poking at each other. the war has just now begun. they are not very good at surveilling of each other and they're not great knowing who is in charge of her to communicate with any given time. so you see a lot of crossed
10:40 am
lines and kernels doing things that maybe they shouldn't without telling their officers, and just kind of sneaking around badly. everyone is fumbling around in the dark a little. but at this point. it is only a matter of time before somebody stumbles into the wrong. place answer colonel devins, from the union side of things. he is sent across the river. to surveil. to recon what he thinks is an encampment. a confederate soldiers here. it turns out their trees and not an encampment. kind of a surprise. i don't, know the trees look like tense. i don't know. >> you can laugh, but how many of you have been on the nighttime surveil, okay? >> i do not want to know what you get up when your spare time. [inaudible] so >> at, least sober surveil. >> that is a good point.
10:41 am
that is a good point. what is meant to be a simple reconnaissance mission bubbles up into this battle. or, as i wrote and earlier today, a recon gone wrong. okay, yeah, that's bad. anyway, so. these union infantry troops are going across the -- river and they only have a couple of small shifts to their name. it's a slow, going but it's a great idea. by the time they get to the top of the block on the other side of the potomac, they end up being met by confederate troops. surprise, surprise. among these virginians that we see on the fields, just up on the blasts, there are a number of troops from the deep south who have been in loudoun county and stationed around lisa
10:42 am
bergen of started to make lease back there. how these individuals have become part of the society here and lease bark, and in fact some of them are frequent guests of the harrison's here at harrison hall. one of the more popular gentlemen who comes visiting is a colonel burt. who is a colonel of the -- mississippi. a doctor recommend. jackson a wife and eight kids of his own back there. and so i think coming to leesburg and meeting the harrisons who also have a case in are pretty well to do southern family have a lot in common. in fact, colonel burnt makes a special friendship with young virginia miller, a niece of the harrison's from washington, d.c.. she's about 19 or 20 years old. she is staying there at harrison hall and meets colonel burt. according to, virginia they had a very close friendship. they were close to what you think of us siblings. they had a familiar kind of
10:43 am
affection for each other. colonel barr not only feels patriotism for the confederacy but i think we're also thinking about the harris and the other white people in lease berg. when he is there on the heights outside of the potomac river. things in the morning of october 20, first i'm not gonna replay the battle. full disclosure, i'm in the civil war or military historian. what i can tell you is at the end results of the battle of -- are pretty clear. as colonel board and the 18th are going across the field they are being guided by a marylander. it's a marylander who is later giving credit as a virginian and that is mr. elijah wright. right now he is acting as a scout for the confederate army it is actually letting directly on colonel birds right hands. directing him in this battle. so the 18th mississippi is
10:44 am
moving forward. colonel barrett is on his horse in the back of the. regiments -- remarks that colonel birth is moving forward. and he did not know that, ahead the field was clear but there was a path to avoid in the ground dropped off. and where that would patch was and the ground dropped was just enough coverage for the 15th massachusetts to be laying in wait. and he came within 100 yards of that unit when they sprang up and fired a volley. and no other volley, he said, fired as directly or had is deadly an impact as did that volley. throughout the rest of the civil war career, he said that was the deadliest volley he had ever seen. immediately, we are not talking about decimating the 18th mississippi. one of. ten decimate. it was one and three. or one out of every two soldiers who were taken out by this volley from the 15th bass.
10:45 am
they were just shredded. and one of those bullets came right into colonel burt, entering through his right hip. shattering the boeing and then staying lodged inside his body. this is horrific and very bad news. and what does burr to do? elijah white says he turned to me, and said, quote, as if an everyday regular conversation, and said, you need to go tell colonel jennifer that i have to leave the field now. >> something has come. up i've got to go. >> there has been a thing. that just happened. and i think that is really credit to colonel burr to being a doctor, and being an officer to. he tries to remain calm and make things happen. he leaves the field, and from that point the battle and the
10:46 am
war are over for colonel burt. for the rest of them, to some things up, the confederate soldiers push all of the union soldiers down the blocks, down into the river. large number of union soldiers weren't. around on each side there were about 700 soldiers to begin with. but 1000 casualties were suffered by the unit army. so again i am not a military historian. but that is not good. >> that's pretty bad. not. great >> not really what you want. >> as i, said colonel barr to this point is taking away from the battlefield in his brought back here to this house harrison hall, in an ambulance and they have done in the front hall on a stretcher. this man has just been shot, not even sought through the. bullet is lodged in his hip. he is bleeding profusely and
10:47 am
blood is pooling onto the wooden floor beneath him. but he is not alone in that house. remember, there are at least a dozen kids of some kind in harrison hall at any given time, as well as the family members of people that are there. and who goes colonel burnt make eye contact with across the hall but the young virginia miller? the young woman who he has defended in this house. she writes, that note, the soldiers that were thought were trying to find a doctor and prepare about upstairs. there was no one right there with colonel burt. so virginia miller rushes to his side, it just takes his hand. there is nothing else that she can do for him, but she can take his hands. eventually, after some time, there is a space made upstairs for him. colonel barrett is taking upstairs and is made as comfortable as can be made for him. and surprising a lot of people, colonel burt hangs in there. a day passes.
10:48 am
then another day passes. virginia helps him write a letter to his wife back in mississippi. they have small, charming, in significant conversation. for five days colonel birth lingers in this house behind me. as you are looking at it is the second story. and i believe it is the second window from the right as you are looking at it. that bedroom is where colonel eras mid our birthplace for spinal hours but eventually he does pass away from his wounds. and he is at least at that time accompanied by friends that he is may here in virginia. this death affects virginia miller greatly. and in fact it protects many people across the south greatly. false bluff, if it happened later in the war, would be
10:49 am
nothing but a skirmish. we are talking handfuls of men when you compared to big o bigger battles like gettysburg. but for 19 -- 51 it is the biggest thing since first manassas. so it makes a big impact in the lives of the people here in loudoun. there is a funeral procession, taking his body down to the station as a band plays. and once his body lies in jackson there is another journey taking his body home to his wife and his children. his death also leaves his family in a tight spot. erasmus was the youngest of the sons of the family. didn't have a lot of resources. there is not even ahead size gray for about 15 years after he dies. but it does not mean that he was forgotten. because in, fact virginia miller kept carrying him in her memory. and she was not the only, one either. there were some interesting
10:50 am
little pieces as we go forward in the war. that make one thing to his memory stays alive. for example, in 1864, there was a william henry loose he was in prison on johnson island. and he wrote to a friend of hayes, someone he knew, talking about his old friend. william henry, loose at that time, was lieutenant colonel of the 18th mississippi. and he was serving in that role at the battle of gettysburg, when he was captured. and so here, when he was in prison, virginia miller is back in washington d.c. intractable to send him some aid or at least commiserate to his existence as it is. and apparently they have been writing back and forth a couple of times, but here in september of 1864, he writes to virginia, saying, something a little interest in and a little --
10:51 am
mark that it is september 24th that he signed this letter and it is october 21st when colonel burt had received his wound. and so first he writes, and a lot of people say this in the victorian era. they are basically trying to, say when you write any more you should write more. so loose, lieutenant colonel louis, says you should write some more. and he also goes on to say, i had never thought to tell you that i have a charming boy at home. so now more than two years old and bearing the same name as our lamented friend colonel burt. i should be proud if he makes such a man as he. i have not seen him in two years. so, someone else has thought enough about colonel burt to name their son after him. it is convenience that burt is a workable name. there are some names that aren't as good. >> easy to remember. >> yeah, it's pretty good.
10:52 am
it's pretty good. so i know that it was not just virginia miller that kept remembering him, although virginia miller, but we know about your interactions with colonel burt or because she did keep a civil war diary. and the directors that she wrote about the battle of balls bluff were not written when the battle happened. but instead is kind of a retrospective a year later. the dire injuries that we do have from her cover late 1861 into 1862, and she makes sure to make a point of saying, this is what i remember about the battle of ball's bluff and what i remember about colonel burt. but they were hidden. her diary henry's were only found in 1980. and where were they found? in the attic. of harrison hall. but wait, there is more. residents of leesburg will tell you that harrison hall has a
10:53 am
number of ghosts. and some suggest that they are our daytime ghosts, and there are nighttime ghosts. and i am not sure exactly what the difference is, but i have heard through the grapevine that's there is a certain presence that is believed to be colonel burt. and that he is a daytime go east. he is a nice guy. one of the encounters that certain individuals believe is a nod to our hint at colonel bird is that the bed, that is in the room where he died, sometimes you walk into a room and there will be a distinct shape of a body lying in a bed that was not there before. it is very spooky. harrison hall and the greater civil war history is often overshadowed by the bigger events. whether it is a bigger battle, the tens of thousands of
10:54 am
casualties instead of the battle of ball's bluff paltry 1100. or it is that in september of 1862, robert e. lee in the other generals came and visited the house, pushing off other memories of lesser officers that had been here. but nevertheless, those individuals both great and small made an impact here at harrison hall. and perhaps they can still be felt today. >> then you had that last bit because it is october and we need to get spooky? >> it is, october we need to get, spooky and you can hear more about those -- at a lot of museum haunting stores. >> i like that segway. >> -- on sale now next weekend! >> and i'm getting a cut! [inaudible] -- for everyone! >> and then we are going to pass things over to dana here, to continue our civil war
10:55 am
stories. tommy to hold? it >> i will need your help at some point. but i think -- maybe a theme tonight. remember that, name because he is going to come up. he also was involved, he went down below the blasts at balls bluff and captured a number of confederate soldiers. and so, he really used that, those exploits and he had made a name for himself and is going to raise, of course, a partisan unit operating at loudoun county. i'm gonna give away a bit a you encounter a union soldier had with. him it would be recorded in his diary. that union soldier is a man named john never. mike, if you could start passing that around you can get a look at our union man of the hour. the map on the back is not relevant, but it is fun to look at. >> and something is never fun
10:56 am
to look at, dana. >> come on! i am from western pennsylvania, and not segues nicely, travis. because years ago, and. i'm talking a long time, because i used a card catalog, i was waiting for a friend of mine to get off work at the -- john hines regional history center in pittsburgh. so i had some time on my hand, and i went up and was poking through the car catalog, and i saw an entry for john nevins and the gettysburg campaign accounts. i got those accounts, i got his diaries photocopies. i have done a lot with john nathan. sort of a no, name in a way. he was not a major general or anything. but interesting stories come out of his stories. and to give you a brief background on nevin, when the civil war began he was a 28 year old teacher in swiftly,
10:57 am
pennsylvania. if you are familiar with pittsburgh at, all you have the monologue hill river pointing up in the south. -- comes down from the north to form the point. which is where the ohio river is formed. quickly is just down the ohio river from pittsburgh on the right-hand side, if you are heading south. >> -- the map? >> actually the map is a state in pennsylvania. i, figure pittsburgh is so great -- great river stadium. it is south of three river salem, which is no longer there, travis. you are way behind you are pittsburgh -- >> your dating yourself! embarrassing. >> he will list in the 20th pennsylvania as a second attack. and the, said he was 28 years old. and the second, excuse me, the 28 is commanded by colonel john geary. gary is a big six foot six tall guy and his pitcher is on a
10:58 am
civil war trail wayside here, in leesburg, i at the courthouse. he is going to command the 28th early in the war. the 28th was raised from both sides of the state of pennsylvania, east and the west. he has soldiers from both the philadelphia area and the pittsburgh, area obviously. he's gonna muster into philadelphia. and it is a huge regiment. for some reason it ended up with 13 to 15 companies, instead of the usual ten. there is a little bit of a local tie, and because the regiment is recorded to a point of rocks after the first battle of manassas. and as anne-marie, said they're gonna get into these pokey probably things. because in february, they are going to put together, commanded geary by, a task force that will move into loudoun county. before the, happens though, they get rid of some of these surplus guys by some of them joining naps pennsylvania
10:59 am
battery. if you have ever seen photographs of anti though, there is a very famous image of this union battery across the smoke town road. that is naps battery. also men from the 20th or going to be drafted out and taking it into the hundred and 47 in pennsylvania. this is a little rabbit trails, when i find interesting i just found out, these three units had reunions to govern after the war. because they were all sort of borne out of one regiments, in battlefields like -- gettysburg there is a -- to the 147th ba, and naps battery has a monument there as well. so just across the river they are providing this regiment, not really on the front lines the 28 is gonna be ordered, as i said, to make this movement and just before they do that they will march down to harpers ferry. so i'm going to give you the microphone, if i may.
11:00 am
pull out, this see if i can drop all these papers. >> library harrisons catalog guy. what i want to do, and, if you don't mind -- okay. i want to reach you. nevins isn't well educated young man. a teacher, as i said. he keeps a diary of his experiences throughout the war. portions of it are missing. outwardly like to do more with it but there's a big chunk of the service where one of the diaries is not available. at least, it's not in the history center. he -- the 28th gets its assignment to go into law in the county. they will be all over the place. williamsburg, waterford, everywhere. showing the flag, find a figure out what is going on here as far as they confederate forces and their differences. early in 1862. when this movement is ordered,
11:01 am
never an is sick. he is laying in bed in a house and harper surrey. he watches his resident, march out of harpers ferry, across the pontoon bridge, and crime what i thought was allowed in heights, but i think it was actually short hill that they went up and over. he is very vexed by this. he says in his diary, i watch as that thin blue line disappeared until it reached the summit of the mountain and disappeared into the dull wintry for us beyond. the next day, he decides that it might be a bright idea -- he doesn't want to miss the war. his comrades are gone. he has hauled himself out of bed. he is going to follow his regiment. let's pick up with some entries from his diary after he says this. he is climbing up short hill. i continue to ascend the mountain.
11:02 am
after frequently resting at length, i reached the summit whence i could look back down into the valley beyond. i did not take long to realize, with a tinge of anxiety, as i sought in vain for our little army which was out of sight. he cannot see his comrades. of course the tree cover is much less. he is looking down what he calls the lease bergh valley, he cannot see his friend. not assigned was there. -- none had passed. he gets a little fluid at times. the valley late peaceful and still in the bright warm sunshine. i now felt certain that i had, for sometime suspected, then i have lost my way. yet i felt but a little concerned that we had not met any of the enemy since we have crossed two days before. he is talking about crossing towards harpers ferry.
11:03 am
the pontoon bridge now stretched like a thread beyond the bright potomac. our pickets extended far beyond the spot that stood. the valley that i had just acquitted, our detachment was going into i could look back and see other detachments in harpers ferry. like thin black threads marching into the town. i sat down on a large rock to rest for a few moments and consider what to do. i think that this is the famous buzzards rock, on short hill -- many of you have probably done this. you've climbed up, you've seen photographs looking into harpers ferry. just imagine the scene -- crawling with union soldiers. he could see all of this activity and he becomes a tourist at this point just admiring on this. how glorious it did seem -- what moral subliminally was
11:04 am
added to the natural beauty of the scene. the yankee army was still marching into the town. carrying with it what destinies, what terrible aaron's, what consequences to reach the enemy. who can tell, even at this moment the bright sunlight glances fitfully back from the burnished bayonets of some regiment as it crosses that black thread of a bridge while the mellow strain of its banned faintly fills the air. so -- it is pretty descriptive. there is a lot of romance here. some of this early war romance. he continues describing this. he talks about the pretty girls of maryland. looking back on the hills and dales of maryland and all the pretty girl she met along the way. what adventures may i not go through now? what chance a promotion and gloria may not be mine in this campaign?
11:05 am
yes! then on to richmond. things change abruptly for our tourist here. he writes, i heard a rustling of leaves on one side, and then another. all around me i saw men in some course gray overcoats with short carvings in their hands approach me. i looked in vain for an outlet, but there was no escape. they closed in on me with all size and ask, pointing 40 guns at my breast, called on me to surrender. >> sounds like someone should have spent less time writing poetry and more time paying attention. >> listen, paying attention? i looked around further captain, as he stepped forward i told him, i am your prisoner. well, that's obvious! right? >> oh, okay? >> you got that right. instead of immediately
11:06 am
answering me he deliberately drew his pistol and slowly and impressively aimed at my had. he said, i am in the habit of treating my prisoners kindly. i wish to do the same by you. i'm sure is there is a god in heaven, if you do not tell me the truth about your army, i will blow you're yankee brains out this moment. >> okay. -- >> hopefully not giving the punchline away too much, this is his introduction to elijah white. white had formed his man after falls bluff in october. he was authorized, his ex points a name had gone around, he had been mirroring gary's men as they moved into loudoun county. they were shadowing geary, when
11:07 am
they saw nevin ascendant sit down on this rock. so nevin has been captured, he continues to write, it is not a pleasant sensation one feels with the muzzle of a cocked revolver six inches from your eyes. i experienced a curious feeling in my forehead. i had a consciousness of a little circle about half an inch in diameter just between my eyes as if that particular spot was suddenly endowed with extra nerves for the purpose. >> this guy is a bit much, isn't any? >> yeah well, you know? you are kind of judge you today, perhaps! >> i want to hear more about the maryland girls. >> travis is being judging out of nevin and his poor plight. he is looking back at the threatening faces around him and he says, the ludicrous of the sudden falling off in the end of my magnificent scheme struck me.
11:08 am
>> you don't say? >> i now had a new reading of my anand to richmond boast. i was frightened. thank god i did not let the rebels know it. okay? see. >> he just said, i am your prisoner. he didn't let them know that he was afraid! >> how. >> i may have turned pale, he says. i know i had a smile on my face as i replied, i am an officer of the federal army. of course i'm not at liberty to tell you anything in regards to the numbers and movements. if you are carrying on war according to civilized customs you will not expect it. i do not believe you will shoot me. i think there is too much discipline among mutual any of you to shoot a prisoner. they continue, finishes this paragraph and i realized i was in the hands of a guerrilla chief. they were seldom known to make
11:09 am
prisoners. he is hoping that they don't shoot him. so, as this interchange is going on, a shot rings out! white, another man, they go running off into this little coast to trees where they had hidden their horses to find out with one of their federal men had accidentally discharged a pistol. white decides that we had better get out here. they tried to get nevin to walk along, but he is sick. nevin -- skipping forward a little bit, quote, he treated me with the utmost kindness. observing that i looked weak and sick and was considerably jaded by our long ride. a tough time behind a cavalrymen's horse. maybe behind a saddle. he must of been riding behind the cavalry. he says why ordered a man to dismount and give me his horse. white then comes next to him,
11:10 am
he is writing with nevin, we are taking him to leesburg to interrogate him. he says that white then entered into a long rambling discourse about himself, his exploits. the southern cause. the last ditch of the everglades of virginia where they were all going to go die if the war were to go poorly. okay. we're just gonna go into the everglades and continue the war if it goes against us. >> this guy knows a long rambling discourse when he sees one. [laughs] >> oh, travis. you know? >> i'm just giving you a hard time. >> just wait until it's your turn, okay? >> i also like how i didn't look scared, i look so second week that they felt panic gave me a horse. >> nevin continues, the captain, although somewhat vein -- that might apply to more than
11:11 am
one person here. >> don't talk about and murray like that! >> i didn't point anyone out. travis is suddenly feeling guilty. >> he was a pleasant enough fellow, honest in his hatred to the north and his mistake veal for southern rights. he then goes on, he ransom out hurdle geary. blue 28 pennsylvania is taking its dealing everything. excuse me, why says -- do you remember, seeing in your papers last fall, and account of the officer on a white charge? one that used to appear in front of edwards fairy and look over your works, the union works? they used to fire at him with the big guns all in vain. this is white speaking. this mayor is the charger, tapping his horse with his wit. and i am the man.
11:12 am
your papers didn't know whether it was beauregard or johnson. white is sort of boasting there. nevin continues notwithstanding his vanity, ignorance, and want a polish, this captain was a very good officer. being particularly well adapted to the partisan service. how many guys to the confederate have? mosby, gilmore, why. there is a whole host of other guys. they have plenty of those. his men -- this is an interesting description of whites guys. his men were stout, hearty fellows. plainly attired. well but plainly attired and homespun. the only thing of military in their attire where they're heavy gray overcoats of which they were provided. they were armed with guns of every description. heavy old family rifle to the double barrel shotgun. two or three of them only had
11:13 am
sabers. the captain, with good humor, braggadocious, told me that they would get better arms from the yankees. to practically illustrate the matter, he coolly buckled on himself my sword and taking out my revolver and admiring it. telling me how glad he was to get it. he took his gun. nevin goes on here for a while but he concludes this sanction, such was captain white and his partisan rangers. so, thank you. again, i love these little vignettes because there is a big war going on. here this guy is having his own little private experience with elijah white. i think what happened is, to continue the story, they take nevin to leesburg where he is interrogated by, i believe it was, a pea hill. he is taken --
11:14 am
joe johnson interrogate him. later in his diary. he is sent to libby prison in richmond. eventually he is transferred to salisbury in north carolina when mcclelland's forces get to close in the peninsula campaign, then he will be paroled. i think what happened is nevin went home and wrote this. i've been calling it a diary but i think this is a fresh reminiscent is in his mind. he is building drama and not mentioning white's name until the end. i think there is truth in this. his recollections -- i think it fits with whites personality when you meet him. nevin, i won't go into all the detail, he will be paroled, go back home, foreman artillery battery. he will raise this battery, independent battery age.
11:15 am
we will be sent to washington for training. he gets in trouble with his commanding officer. william far choir barry. never been in trouble with a man named far choir, it is gonna go bad. there is a document in nevins service record where barry writes that this guy is a competent commander of iran artillery battery. if he doesn't resign i'm going to court-martial him. i did not know what devin did because he resigned. you don't first succeed try again. nevin we'll come back. in that picture going around you will see him as the major of the 93rd pennsylvania. he will command that regimen in the battle of gettysburg. he will lead that regiment, even though he is the major, because the colonel has an alcohol problem and is not at the front. i can talk about this at more length but the 93rd
11:16 am
pennsylvania regimental history, nevin it's pretty much omitted from it. he is an outsider from western pennsylvania in and eastern pa regiment at this time. . they do not want to acknowledge that they have a problem with their colonel, they just ignore nevin. although he does a really good job with the 93. he finally gets his act together. that is an account of this one union soldier. i have this one little thing. should i wait on that? an attack with the documents i have now? >> i don't know why everyone looked at me? [laughs] >> let's hang on to this one. >> let's also have a quick toast to nevin. and to pharco are for having that name. >>? and that like the bad guy in
11:17 am
track? i didn't have the guts to ask that but i was wondering. >> i ask the hard hitting questions. >> i've got my papers all mixed up, of course. here we go. i will pat these documents around. i think they're really cool. what you're going to see here, you can come up and grab them, mike. thank you. cheer for mike. >> thank you, mike. so, these documents are related to loudoun county as well. there are three small documents and one larger one in this plastic thing that i am passing around. i purchased these online from a dealer they were found in an enveloped burying the name caused amelia chanting -- >> you've already named your path? it could be a good name. your kids name. fathers passed and also mine.
11:18 am
these documents concern a trip -- his daughter, amelia. native of baltimore early february 1863. asa owned a sawmill between goose creek and -- basically east of filament. there are two very short letters of introduction dated february 5th 1863 from thomas hoke, -- hoax letters are written to the custom house office there is in berlin, maryland. francis cochrane of baltimore. both refer to janey as an uncompromising union man. asa, apparently, traveled by horse in carriage to the potomac river. he somehow made his way across to sandy hook, maryland. >> where we just were not too
11:19 am
long ago. >> travis and i did a facebook thing for civil war times at sandy hook. we got a pass from the marshal at sandy hook that allowed genie to go to harpers ferry. allowed them both to go to harpers ferry where they then took a train to baltimore. the last large document is a letter of introduction dated february 1763 to introduce cheney and daughter to general robert shank, commander of the middle department headquartered in baltimore. the middle department was like a big administrative department in baltimore and all over pennsylvania. shank was all over, he was sort of a pencil pushing administrative general. the letter was signed by to baltimore businessmen. hopkins and release. hopkins, -- reese married a janey. they probably went to his house
11:20 am
and got these letters of introduction. unfortunately we don't know the nature of the visit. janey's were unionists. they were probably having issues with confederates in baltimore. we were talking about this beforehand. the border is abstract, right? how many guys from loudoun county go over and fly with the loudoun rangers? and around point rocks, quite a few marylanders that crossover and site with elijah white. >> elijah white is from maryland. >> right. of course. he ends up going on, he survives the war. he fights the brandy station. they have the ferry, named whites ferry, which is also closed. >> he also founded the bank in town, which is now lightfoot restaurant. >> a big name here in leesburg, barry just north of here in
11:21 am
union cemetery. >> but he is a marylander! never forget it. >> that is my little vent yet about loudoun county. i was happy to make it through travis heckling to tell you the story. thank you. >> before i begin i do want to apologize to dana, you are my favorite western pennsylvanian. >> the only one you know. >> jens is okay. is that what you people say? it >> actually, that was a really great segue to the story that i'm gonna tell because dana did mention that -- although the majority of people here in loudoun county, in 1861, are going to support secession, they will support the confederate cause, there is still a sizeable minority of people who are going to cross the river and support the united states army during the
11:22 am
civil war. what i'm going to do is take a brief look at what i think is one of the more compelling people to serve in the united states rv from loudoun county. that is a man named luther slater. i like to call him lucky luther's later his luck is not always good but what i find so interesting about him is luck, whether good or bad, seems to put him into interesting circumstances during the civil war. he is going to find himself at the center of a lot of really incredible experiences over the course of the civil war. he is born in 1841, just outside of love it's phil, just a few miles northwest of us. in case you couldn't tell from his name, he is a lutheran. he is part of the german migration that comes to
11:23 am
northern loudoun county mostly through pennsylvania and western maryland. in fact, to this day some people still refer to love it's phil as the german settlement for this reason. what this migration is going to do is it will give this portion of loudoun county a very different culture than the rest of the county. in the northwestern part, on down to goose creek on down to what a four year we're going to have a lot of german immigrants a lot of quakers a lot of cultural roots were to the north the economic ties it to the north the family ties to the north that is going to set them apart from their neighbors in the eastern and southern portions of loudoun county. these are lightly battled by english tidewater planters. they're going to bring with them plantation agricultural.
11:24 am
they are going to bring with them a reliance on enslaved labor. these differences are going to play out in a very deadly way in the american civil war. looser slater at the young man is sort of the stereotypical hardworking, highest industries german. as a young man he is going to decide he wants to go into a career in the clergy. >> hold your beer. thank. you >> plus i'm thirsty. [laughs] he is going to look to a career in the clergy. he's going to attend a seminary career in salem, virginia. and he's going to transfer up to pennsylvania to study and become a lutheran minister. of course in 1861 everybody plans county get derailed. luther's decision to go into the church was put on hold, temporarily. in 1862 he is going to return
11:25 am
to loudoun county. like many of his neighbors in northwestern loudoun county he will not return to enlist in the confederate army but in the federal army instead. he is going to join a unit raid in the summer of 1862 known as the loudoun independent rangers. a unit raised by samuel means, miller from west virginia. they are going to service scouts for the union army. they will serve as anti partisan troops against people like elijah why in jonathon mosby. they will help defend local unionist here, particularly in northwestern loudoun county. at the tender age of 21, luther slater, despite any sort of military experience, it's going to be elected first lieutenant. he is second in command in the loudoun rangers to his commander, samuel means.
11:26 am
word quickly spread throughout loudoun county that there is a unionist cavalry being built along the borders of virginia. as you can imagine this is not very popular. it is not particularly popular with a certain confederate office that we have mentioned a few times. dana, who do you think that? is >> elijah white. >> that is right! at the same time, raising his own cavalry battalion. what will become the 35th battalion of virginia cavalry. he is going to get word that samuel means is recruiting a cavalry unit here in virginia. he is going to declare in the summer of 1862 his intention to, quote, whip sam means in august of 1862 he is going to get that opportunity. he gets word that samuel means is back in waterford, recruiting for his new unit. amongst the unionists in
11:27 am
waterford. he is there with a few recruits. 20 or so men in town with him. elijah white and his battalion are going to make a sneak attack upon the loud and rangers while they're still recruiting in waterford. early in the predawn hours of. the 27th they are going to start creeping around the farms and roads around waterford. they are avoiding any pickets that may being on watch. just as they are about to spring they're trapped are challenged by the union officer outside of the waterford baptist church. that officer just so happens to be young luther slater first lieutenant of those loud and rangers. he will challenge the man approaching from the darkness. shots will wring out. this is the beginning of an incredibly intense firefight that occurs in the village of waterford.
11:28 am
samuel means, the commander of the loudoun rangers, he managed to slip out of his house and disappear into the early morning darkness, leaving luther slater and about 20 of his man behind in the village waterford to fend for themselves. i am not want to comment on his leadership, but this is the star of a trend with samuel means, if you ask me. you are laughing at this. it's not the best record, no. you are right. looser slater is going to gather the 20 or so men he has. they are going to fortify themselves within the waterford baptist church. you can still go see this church today. it is a fairly stout brick building a very defensible position. for the next several hours, slater and his men are going to defend this place like it is the alamo. they are under a hail of bullets. the confederate suggest of the numerous times throughout the building when the confederate
11:29 am
swirl demand their surrender. at some point during this fight slater himself as wounded. he is one of many men who is hit during the firefight. he is actually shot in the head, the chest, the arm, and the hand. >> as a reminder, travis said that this was a lucky guy. lucky luther slater got shot in the head. >> easier to say where he wasn't shot. >> right, right. [laughs] he's lucky because our story isn't going to end here. >> spoiler, oh okay. >> slater is lying on the floor of the church. he is trying to command as long as he can. he is literally bleeding out on the floor of this church as the confederate surrounding him. >> still lucky. >> story just gets better. >> better and better. i am known for telling a downer though some -- eventually, his men start to run low on ammunition. as i said there are casualties
11:30 am
on both sides. finally after the third demand for the surrender, the loudoun rangers inside the church will lay down their arms under the condition that they are allowed to be paroled rather than go to southern prisoner of war camps. when elijah white enters the church, he sees luther slater lying on the floor bleeding out. he actually says i am sorry to see you so dangerously wounded, the tenant. >> are you though? >> like he did it. >> he's sorry he did it i mean, brother against brother. isn't that what they say? and actually, that is a whole other story for a whole another time. the succinct and for our guy, luther slater. but as i said, he's a fairly lucky fellow. despite everyone's predictions, he will survive the wounds that he receives at the waterford baptist church. in fact, after a few weeks he
11:31 am
is going to be moved north to pennsylvania. they figure the safest place for him to recover is going to be at the home of one of his college buddies, a guy he went to school with before the war. a little bit he is going to settle in in pennsylvania. now, we are going to introduce a little bit of romance into the story! while he is recuperating he is under the care of his friends sister, molly yelped. molly is going to become the guardian angel in the story she will literally nursed him back from the and of desk and help him recover his strength to the point that in november of 1862 he is able to rejoin his unit he comes back to the loudoun rangers despite all of molly's care is old wounds are still giving him a lot of trouble. he has mostly lost the use of one of his arms it was effectively shattered by confederate bullets.
11:32 am
he is going to be under a lot of duress. in february of 1863 he is going to resign his commission in the loud and rangers. he will return back north to pennsylvania presumably to the waiting arms of mali -- if seems to be the thing that keeps him going throughout all of this. he says where he gets lucky. >> yeah! >> hey, this is on c-span. we gotta keep it g rated. >> i'm sorry, i'm sorry! >> he is lucky he gets to go, retire essentially. a quiet pennsylvania where he is going to sit out the rest of the war. -- or is he! one of the things i have omitted from the story is molly in her family live in a little town in southern pennsylvania called gettysburg.
11:33 am
1863, it's not exactly the best place to go if you're trying to avoid the civil war. >> he is so lucky! >> lucky luther. [laughs] he is a guy that really can't avoid the sense of duty, the sense of patriotism. as the confederate army, the army of northern virginia is crossing the mason-dixon line, entering northridge india, he is going to offer his services to the governor of pennsylvania. he's going to receive a commission in the 26th pennsylvania emergency militia. specifically in company a of the 26th. one of the reasons why this is so cool's company a is made up of students from gettysburg college. what was the pennsylvania college, now the gettysburg college, and the lutheran theological seminary in gettysburg. you have a 22-year-old officer, who has seen some experience.
11:34 am
he has been horribly wounded in battle. >> he has one functional arm. >> he is literally going into battle with an arm in a sling almost an r -- after his wounding. he is leading a bunch of students who had never heard a shot fired in anger. >> what could go wrong? >> what quran! [laughs] >> despite the, he and the 20 thinks pennsylvania are going to march out on the morning of june 26, 1863. they are going to take up a position on harsh creek along the gas tom pikes outside gettysburg, pennsylvania, to face lees battle hardened veterans of the army of northern virginia. i can't even imagine what is going to disguise mine this morning. looking out, looking to the west, you see a long column of guys plaid and gray and butternut marching towards you. slater did not know that these
11:35 am
were men of you will score. these are hardened veterans. they are being escorted by the battalion of confederate cavalry as they advance through the pennsylvania countryside. now, in one of those weird twists of fate, as i said weird luck has a way of popping up in luther slater's life, those confederate cavalryman are members of the 35th battalion of virginia cavalry. led by who,? >> elijah why. none other! so here in some of the opening shots of the gettysburg campaign, we have two men representing loudoun county. one loudoun born, one maryland but adopted by loudoun county. on opposite sides of the battlefield. unfortunately for luther slater, unluckily --
11:36 am
luck can be good and it can be bad! >> oh, oh. >> wait a minute, now you are turning it around? >> you're just gonna give me a hard time -- >> oh! ways >> unluckily for luther, his man are not going to put up the kind of fight that they did back at the waterford baptist church. the 26 pennsylvania militia is effectively scattered like leaves in the wind. these confederate veterans roll over them. about 175 of them are captured. their baggage is burned. luther escapes. this is effectively the and of his frontline service during the american civil war. one of the reasons i love the story is because just a few days later, the confederate army is going to approach gettysburg for a second time. when they see guys in blue uniforms outside the town along the cash town pike they figure this is the same militia guys we rolled over less than a week earlier.
11:37 am
what they are going to find out is that it's absolutely not the case. these are veteran cavalryman with the army of the potomac backing them. i like to think that some of the confederate over confidence in walking back into gettysburg is due to the performance of the pennsylvania militia. but i'm really just trashing pennsylvania at this point. >> thanks a lot. >> as i said, this is the and of uyghur slater's frontline duty. he is going to remain in the united states army serving in the medical corps. he will serve in the signal corps. in the fall of 1864, he is going to finally marry molly yount, make an honest woman out of her. it is really a beautiful love story. to get married they have, a daughter soon afterwards. and the end of the war this young family is going to uproot themselves and return here to loudoun county. they are going to return to love it's phil. as i said, --
11:38 am
postmaster, he will serve in a few different capacities. this is where -- he already made one of me once but this is where his luck really turns, but not for the best. >> more than once. >> in 1871, poor molly, the love of his life, is going to die shortly after the birth of their second child. she will die, 67 years after they were married. their young son david, who was born at the time of her death, will die just a few weeks later. sadly, although if you ever go to gettysburg and you visit evergreen cemetery there on cemetery hill. the famous one that was the center of the fighting there. you will see molly and her son buried there in her hometown. at this point lisa really throws himself into his work. he moved to washington d.c., he
11:39 am
is going to take a position with the pensions bureau. raise your hand if you have ever been to the national building museum in washington. one of my absolute favorite museums in the entire country. i love this place. it is a massive, massive, brick building in washington d.c. was built to house the pensions department. for the first time in american history we literally had hundreds of thousands of veterans who needed pensions. their family news, next of kin, needed some sort of payment for their service killing the american civil war. luther slater is going to take a very important role as a clerk in the pensions office. how important? anyone who has ever done any sort of research into a civil war soldier has benefited from his work. luther slater was on the team that helped develop the system
11:40 am
of cards for compiled service records for civil war soldiers. if you have ever been on -- trying to chase down your ancestors military service. i've been trying to research a soldier's military service. the compiled service records are usually the first place you look. i will raise a glass to luther slater for helping to develop that system. it is a very useful system! >> here here. >> not just for our researchers, but certainly for the families of veterans and the veterans themselves who are trying to get money for their military service after the civil war. he is also going to take on a very important leadership role in another organization, that is the military order of the loyal legion of the united states. that is a mouthful. where you're gonna say something? no >>. okay luther slater is one of the founding officers of the washington d.c. chapter, also
11:41 am
one of the founding fathers of the lutheran church community in washington d.c.. played a very important social role within the nation's capital up until his very unexpected death in 1909. as a eulogy for luther slater here and you want to share just a few words that others wrote about him,. fred ainsworth, the adjutant general of the u.s. army. one of his bosses there at the pension bureau describes later. he said that his loss to the department will be the most difficult to replace. if your boss says that about you, that is pretty nice. i like that. a much more heartfelt to memorialization comes from one of the men who served along luther in the loudoun rangers. another loudoun county man. a man named brisk a good heart. in the memoirs of his service to the loudoun rangers that
11:42 am
luther slater was, quote, not only a bag and respected but loved by all. large physically well-built man a true type of american soldier and brave as a lion. a very fitting tribute to a locally born soldier. it's soldier who served the united states are being unlike a lot of his neighbors. the only commissioned union soldier to be buried in love it's film. next time you're there stop by impaled a visit but. -- >>. >>. -- . . >>.
11:43 am
>>. >>. >>. >>. >>. three years after she died he did remarry. he remarried a cousin. it's different times. i'm not trying to besmirch this guy. >> that is only okay if you are landed gentry. >> only okay if you're in the 19th century. >> he remarried after her death. he's married with his second wife as well as his daughter with the first marriage.
11:44 am
but >> -- just a little assigned -- >> why are you trying to tear this guy down? >> don't ever call me lucky. >> a little curious inside, why was at gettysburg. the famous story of army of northern virginia didn't have enough cavalry because jeb steward was off doing his own thing. why and stewart did not get along. so they were together at brandy station in june of 1863. by the time the campaign really begins in earnest, it is just not working out. they send white off, sort of detached. that is how he ends up with the core. >> and up running into another soldier from loudoun county in the hills of west virginia. >> bring us on home! >> as far as story goes, if you have come to previous history on tap, travels can be pretty
11:45 am
depressing with his stories. that one is not that bad. all things considered the loss of an arm, death of a wife. it's not so bad. no plane crashes, no murders. this is why he thinks it's lucky. the story i want to tell, you will hear some familiar names. as you can probably already tell, you might already know loudoun county has some unionist. they have secessionists. you have both armies back and forth throughout the conflict. i want to talk a bit about some prisoners. when you think prisoners of war, you probably think often of john nevins who get caught enjoying good scenery. you also think of libby prison, andersonville -- i want to talk a bit, some people get swept up in war. they end up in prison as political prisoners. for my story i want to tire in the early 1863 with the loudoun
11:46 am
rangers. a loudoun union. captain means, from waterford, in control of them. when he is in this northern loudoun area in the spring of 1863, he wants to show that they are in the area. he has individuals that he wanted retaliation on. he uses this moment to take some prisoners that he thinks are worthy of being in prison for some previous acts. there are a couple of secessionist, not surprisingly, among those who get arrested by means and allowed and rangers. most notably among them was a man named henry ball. a man who lived a little north from here in the levitz area. if you are familiar with temple hall, he owns temple hall on route 15 just a bit north from here. samuel means is pretty sure that it is ball who led the soldier to the baptist church in water for the travis had mentioned. he had noted ball at the very
11:47 am
notable secessionist in that area. they arrived they arrest ball amongst some other individuals. another one of note and notable secessionist named albert campbell bell. also from that area. immediately there is outrage over these two civilians who get arrested. it is not the most common thing. there are also fears of what this might lead to. he confederateas travis mentiony have heard of the battle of gettysburg. that interrupted some plans to get these two individuals released by the united states. after gettysburg, there is once again a resumption by the confederates to release these two individuals. the families have been going from day one to try to find a way to get these two individuals out of prison. i will call them secessionist just with the stake of the story. they are sent across the potomac, ultimately sent to fort delaware. an interest prison, especially for prisoners of war, spies,
11:48 am
and other criminals. after gettysburg and the latter part of the summer of 1863, it is jeb stewart who now is looking for ways in which to get these men back, potentially. he writes to a man, i guess, he doesn't get along well with -- a larger white. i don't really want to talk about him because i am sick about him. >> sorry. >> he writes to a larger why, he and says i want you to take captive a man name a sub on. just so happens to be the father-in-law of samuel means. the man who arrested henry ball. it's personal! it's a small county. these people all know each other. take him as a hostage for these two secessionists who are being taken early -- a large wives or came with that but suggest maybe take a second person. it can be a twofer to swap. two unionists for two
11:49 am
secessionist. that is the plan a larger light sends a few of his soldiers to waterford to undertake this mission. the first go to the other person they plan to take. a man named william williams. the head of an insurance company in waterford. they arrived at his house on a sunday evening. knock on his door. when it is open by williams, a revolver is in his face. the unlucky part for him. they tell him, we are taking you prisoner. his wife pleads for the confederates not to do so. they take him. now it is on to asa bonds. they might not have twitter, but rumors float around pretty easily in waterford. there is knowledge that this is happening. >> they are on whatsapp, right? >> the waterford social media page was buzzing. >> what a fruit news. >> waterford uncensored was lighting up! >> so they made a mistake. they realized that it was going
11:50 am
to a sub lance how second. by the time these few consider its arrival bonds home, it is not bonds who answered the door, it is two ladies. there is a secessionist lady who actually write about the account of what supposedly happened. i will let neddie dawson give you the account but even i can. she wrote, mrs. means and miss bond stood in the door and dared to southerners to enter. they did enter, slapped misses means john, and miss bond fired a revolver on them. to that wonder they took it from her. >> these waterford ladies! >> they mean business. >> yeah, yeah! >> if you are gonna be a unionist in virginia they had better be. >> they slap turn the face, right? >> in the jaw. >> that is what mattie dawson says. she says if we had dared to do that with the yank we would have been shot instantly. >> yeah. probably. >> maybe. >> i mean, mesa round and find out. isn't that what people say? >> that is the edited version
11:51 am
of what they say. >> wow! >> now, whatever happened happened. during this time, ace upon slips out. they don't get the prime suspect that they were supposed to get. these confederates are like, oh no, we missed the main target. we had better take someone else. we need to people. so, they went to robert hollen warsaw home. the local quicker schoolmaster. they take him. >> is he lucky to? travis standards? >> if he survived the war than i'm gonna count him. i'll allow it. >> these two individuals didn't really do anything. williams and hollingsworth. for the union army they would say that the two secessionists did do some acts. at least this session is we're charged again samuel means thought that henry bond led confederates to union soldiers at that baptist church both men were also charged with horse
11:52 am
dealing. -- now once these two units are being captured they are taken to a large white. ofbasically the county is a buz that next day. unionists and secessionists pleading their cases to let these two men go. both other fearful that this could lead to continued escalation and retaliation by both sides. larger white does not let these two men go. he is then convinced to give them a three-week parole. he tells the two unionist who he has prisoner, i'm gonna give you three weeks. go back up to waterford. you will convince the united states to let those two secessionist go. if you can't do that, you have got to come back and three weeks time. the two unionist go up there. both families of all four individuals are working together throughout this process as well. they are pleading with u.s. representatives and confederate ones as well.
11:53 am
three weeks goes pretty quickly. they are unsuccessful for gaining the release of those two secessionist from ford, delaware. the two unionist plan on going back to elijah white. at this point, samuel means from the loudoun rangers are like, why are you going back? the loudoun rangers plan a mock arrest of the two unionist. we are going to take you before you can go back. they said, no, we gave our word that we will go back in those three weeks time. they leave a little early. they are just ahead of the loud and rangers who want to take them under arrest. they eventually find elijah whites encampment. they are near the upper bill area at this time. white was not in a good mood at the time. he says, you're gonna be treated just like other prisoners of war. just like those two secessionist mans were taken before delaware. you are going to go, on foot, down to richmond. they are sent to castle
11:54 am
thunder. a notorious prison, particularly for the head of that prison, enrichment. several other political prisoners and spies and the like at castle thunder. >> you can tell it's bad because it sounds like a place in a comic book. general rule. >> they're lucky, they're there. >> they're lucky! so lucky. >> could be worse. they could be shot six times in the face or whatever. >> like another lucky person. >> at this time the secession's families and the unions families are working together. they have a common goal to get these four individuals out. william williams's wife gets plenty of signatures from unionists in virginia. she is making the case to the united states to let these men go. the fall of 1853 she goes to the white house thinking there is one man who can get these two men out it is president lincoln. she meets with him on september
11:55 am
12th. he understands the situation, he writes a note to the head of president saying, help this request out of possible. now, this is the ticket. it is from president lincoln! let these two individuals go. when i was reading about this it made me think to an office episode where cree britain says you can't get a get out a free card, those things cost thousands! it seems almost too good to be true, it is. even though lincoln writes this letter to the head of prison, stansberry war stanton countermand that request. no, no, no. if we do this, this is just going to get more and more hostages taken. this is going to get copy kites doing this. now, no. these two are staying in prison. disappointed, even with a letter from the president, mrs. williams returned back to waterford, failing on her mission to get the two individuals out. at this point attention then
11:56 am
goes to, okay, let's get the secessionist out. let's start making appeals to the confederate government. secessionist make appeal to the secretary war for the confederacy. you even get henry ball writing from fort delaware prison saying, i don't want people taken prisoner on my account. he didn't like virginians being captured by other virginians. his letter, especially, has a good effect. an effective one. the two individuals in castle thunder are eventually released from confederate prison. all they have to do is take an oath, they can get a travel permit and they can head back home. the two unionist say, we are not taking a look! now they have another challenge. they don't have a take an oath to the confederacy. luckily for them they do know in individual within the war department who gets them travel permits. they are at least able to take the train up to the scranton area and then can walk on home. even while they are walking back, they get captured again.
11:57 am
>> so lucky! >> lucky guys. >> lucky for them it is a short capture, they are released pretty quickly. from stanton they are able to walk back home. in dramatic fashion, william williams, and hollingworth, they arrived back to -- beleaguered. williams even at smallpox when he was in prison. they make it back to waterford on christmas day, 1863. >> awe! >> hallmark, if you're watching. a succession christmas is laid out for you right here. >> a secession christmas! >> this is a handmade one for the hundreds of stories you make every year. >> where it was getting out in early december that the two unionist four out of prison then stanton relented and the two secessionists were released from fort delaware. they returned home just before the new year to loudoun county. they were so lucky.
11:58 am
all for them to make a hole by the end of 1863. i think it is a great story for showing that people get caught up in more, even if you are not directly caught up in it. if you are in a place like loudoun county near the potomac river you have varying police in the war -- . you have already going back and forth sometimes more is. unavoidable sometimes you might have a notable secessionist who has led troops sometimes he might be a schoolmaster cotton the right place at the wrong time war doesn't take breaks for anybody particularly in areas where there is so much activity, like here in loudoun county. >> what do we toast? two >> to be home for christmas? >> home for christmas! cheers! >> [applause] >> we do have some time for questions if you have any about any of the four stories. feel free to ask. we will bring a microphone to
11:59 am
you. >> will we? >> c-span has got it! they are professionals. okay. c-span will bring you a microphone. >> i see a question. the halo around rich gillespie. >> my question it is a celebration -- way for the mic, okay. here you go. >> now you can celebrate. >> i think it is amazingly cool that here in loudoun county you just told the story of four prisoners and all of their houses are still standing. >> cheers to that! [inaudible] yeah. >> it's almost like we have a very robust community of preservation organizations here in loudoun county. >> what? >> that's banana. any other questions, comments? >> before we sign off. >> well, before we go i would just like to thank all of you for coming. one more thank you to alex in and for letting us use the historic harrison home to hold
12:00 pm
this event. if you are enjoying american history tv, then sign up for our newsletter using the qr code on our screen to receive the weekly schedule of upcoming programs like, lectures in history the presidency and more sign up for the american history tv newsletter and be sure to watch american history tv every saturday or anytime online at c-span dot org slash history
12:01 pm
listening to programs on c-span 3 c-span radio just got an easier tell your smart speaker,, play c-span radio, and listen to washington journal, daily at 7 am eastern. important congressional hearings and other public affairs events throughout the day, and weekdays at 5 pm at 9 pm eastern, catch washington today for a fast tape report of the stories of the day. listen to c-span anytime, just tell your spirit speaker play c-span radio, c-span, powered by cable. >> middle and high school students, it is your time to shine. you are invited to participate and this year's c-span student cam documentary competition. in light of the upcoming midterm elections, picture yourself as a newly elected
12:02 pm
member of congress, we asked this year's competitors what is your top priority, and why? make a 5 to 6 minute video that shows the importance of your issue. from opposing and supporting perspectives. do not be afraid to take risks with your documentary, the bold. among the $100,000 in cash prizes is a 5000-dollar grand prize, videos m subtted by january 20th, 2023. visit our website at student for competition rules, tips, resources, and it step-by-step guide. weekends on c-span two are an intellectual feast, every saturday american history tv documents america story, and, on sunday's book tv brings you the latest in nonfiction books and authors, funding for c-span two comes from these television companies and more. including comcast. >>


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on