1861

“Election day on Separation & Representation or versus – passed off very quietly. Regarding the whole matter as null from illegality, I did not vote. In Middle & West Tennessee no canvass was allowed – the speaking & printing being all on one side. It is said that in East Tennessee a full & free canvass took place.” [Lindsley]

The citizens of Tennessee vote 105,000 to 47,000 to secede from the Union, despite the fact that many Tennesseans – possibly a majority – are opposed to secession.  Out of the 7000+ votes cast in Shelby County, only 4 are for “no separation” and 5 for Union. Only five West Tennessee counties (Carroll, Decatur, Hardin, Henderson, and Weakley) deliver majority votes for the Union. Three Middle Tennessee counties (Franklin, Lincoln, and Humphreys) vote unanimously to secede. In Nashville the vote is 3,033 for Separation, 249 against. In East Tennessee the vote is more than two-to-one against secession. Arkansas, Virginia, and North Carolina have also seceded, following the events at Fort Sumter. Tennessee has become the final state to join the Confederacy.Five Border Slave States will ultimately elect not to secede: Missouri, Kentucky, West Virginia, Maryland, and Delaware.

1864

The Union Party Convention (the party consists of Republicans and “War” Democrats) — meeting in Baltimore, nominates Abraham Lincoln for President and Andrew Johnson for Vice President, with Emancipation comprising a major plank of the party’s platform. Party members across the country are concerned that Lincoln will not be able to carry the election in the fall, but Sherman’s capture of Atlanta in September will cement the Union victory.

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