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Old October 15th, 2012, 07:08 AM   #1
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Northerners who fought for the CSA


This just occurred to me, but we always get this impression that everyone below the Mason Dixon line automatically were pro-CSA (Hollywood I'm looking at you). Particularly in fiction at least it seems that all Northerners were completely in favor of the Union, and while there were Southerns that didn't believe in all tenants of the South, they still fought for the CSA, but it seems to me that since the war was actually about a lot of issues it only seemed natural that you would have some citizens of the North who would sympathize with the states rights issue involved and might have fought for the South, and some Southerners who were in favor of not breaking up the Union. Does anyone know of any Officers in the CSA or Union armies that were raised in the oppositions turf, or that defected (so to speak) and fought for the other side? I've found this is actually been a been harder to research than I first thought, but I'm sure some of you might know already.
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Old October 15th, 2012, 07:15 AM   #2

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George Thomas is probably the most prominent example of a Homegrown Yankee.

By the end of the War, the Union Army contained regiments recruited in every Confederate state.
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Old October 15th, 2012, 07:20 AM   #3

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Originally Posted by NelsonSmith View Post
This just occurred to me, but we always get this impression that everyone below the Mason Dixon line automatically were pro-CSA (Hollywood I'm looking at you). Particularly in fiction at least it seems that all Northerners were completely in favor of the Union, and while there were Southerns that didn't believe in all tenants of the South, they still fought for the CSA, but it seems to me that since the war was actually about a lot of issues it only seemed natural that you would have some citizens of the North who would sympathize with the states rights issue involved and might have fought for the South, and some Southerners who were in favor of not breaking up the Union. Does anyone know of any Officers in the CSA or Union armies that were raised in the oppositions turf, or that defected (so to speak) and fought for the other side? I've found this is actually been a been harder to research than I first thought, but I'm sure some of you might know already.
I'm not aware of any northerners that fought for the CSA, but there are a couple of southerners who reached very high rank in the Union forces. Robert E. Lee's brother, Sydney Smith Lee served as a Rear Admiral commanding the northern blockade (his son, Fitzhugh Lee served in Uncle Robert's army of northern Virginia). Perhaps most famously, George Thomas became famous as the "rock of Chickamauga" while fighting for the Union cause. His family disowned him for it.
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Old October 15th, 2012, 07:21 AM   #4

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Originally Posted by Salah View Post
George Thomas is probably the most prominent example of a Homegrown Yankee.

By the end of the War, the Union Army contained regiments recruited in every Confederate state.
While true, there were many more from the border states than from the deep south.
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Old October 15th, 2012, 07:25 AM   #5

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Just off the top of my head, in addition to George Thomas, some native Southerners who fought for the Union: Admiral David Farragut, General Winfield Scott, General Philip St. George Cooke (Jeb Stuart's father-in-law)

Some native Northerners who fought for the Confederacy: General Bushrod Johnson, General John Pemberton, General Edward A. Perry

Last edited by Rongo; October 15th, 2012 at 07:29 AM. Reason: winfield scott - but, of course!
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Old October 15th, 2012, 07:26 AM   #6

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The classic example is Lieutenant General John C. Pemberton, Grant's opponent at Vicksburg. He was a Pennsylvanian. There was also Brig. Gen Daniel Ruggles, a Massachusetts native who served the Confederacy.
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Old October 15th, 2012, 07:33 AM   #7
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Mansfield_Lovell Mansfield_Lovell
was born in Washington DC, and lived in both Boston and New York, where he was when the war broke out, so I guess that makes him pretty northern. He enlisted in the Confederate army and was appointed magor-general in charge of the defence of New Orleans, but I've no idea what his motivations were.
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Old October 15th, 2012, 08:53 AM   #8
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Mansfield Lovell was born in Washington DC, and lived in both Boston and New York, where he was when the war broke out, so I guess that makes him pretty northern. He enlisted in the Confederate army and was appointed magor-general in charge of the defence of New Orleans, but I've no idea what his motivations were.
Yeah, you would hope some of these people kept diaries or some such, because for someone like Lovell, I couldn't even begin to guess what their motivation might be, but I'm sure it would be interesting.
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Old October 15th, 2012, 10:05 AM   #9

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Mrs. Lincoln had six close relatives fight for the CSA.

..one more popped into my head.
Gen. Samuel Cooper

Last edited by tjadams; October 15th, 2012 at 10:17 AM.
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Old October 15th, 2012, 10:22 AM   #10

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Mrs. Lincoln had six close relatives fight for the CSA.

..one more popped into my head.
Gen. Samuel Cooper
Good mention there; Cooper was the highest ranking general in the entire Confederacy. Although he hailed from the north, his wife's family were Virginians and he was a close friend of Davis. As amateur historians, we're all somewhat indebted to Cooper; he preserved the records of the Confederate army and turned them over to the US government, forming part of the Civil War Official Records.
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