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A Little Civil War Banknote With A Big History


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csa251862wandarr.jpg

 

{Quoted from Wikipedia article}On the morning of April 12, a passenger train with the locomotive General was stopped at Big Shanty (now Kennesaw, Georgia) so that the crew and passengers could have breakfast. Andrews and his raiders took this opportunity to hijack the General and a few railcars. His goal was to drive the train northward toward Chattanooga and meet up with Mitchel's advancing army. En route, Andrews planned to tear up track, destroy switches, burn covered bridges along the railway, disrupt telegraph wires, and inflict as much damage as possible to the railroad. Andrews' men commandeered the General and steamed out of Big Shanty, leaving behind startled passengers, crew members, and onlookers, which included a number of Confederate soldiers from a trackside camp.

 

The train's conductor, William Allen Fuller, chased the General by foot and handcar. At Etowah, Fuller spotted the Yonah and with it chased the raiders north, all the way up to Kingston. At Kingston, Conductor Fuller got on the William R. Smith and headed north to Adairsville. The tracks two miles south of Adairsville were out of service, so Fuller had to run the distance by foot. At Adairsville, Fuller took command of the southbound locomotive Texas and chased the General.

 

With the Texas chasing the General in reverse, the two trains steamed through Dalton, and Tunnel Hill. At various points, raiders severed telegraph wires so no transmissions could go through to Chattanooga. However, their objective of burning bridges and dynamiting Tunnel Hill was not accomplished. At milepost 116.3 (north of Ringgold, Georgia), with the locomotive failing, Andrews' men abandoned the General and scattered, just a few miles from Chattanooga.

 

Andrews and all 21 of his men were caught by the Confederates, as well as the two that had missed the hijacking that morning by oversleeping. Andrews was tried in Chattanooga and found guilty. He was executed by hanging on June 7 in Atlanta. On June 18, seven others who had been transported to Knoxville and convicted as spies, were returned to Atlanta and also hanged; their bodies were buried unceremoniously in an unmarked grave. Eight other raiders made a successful and remarkable escape from confinement. Traveling for hundreds of miles in predetermined pairs, they all made it back safely to Union lines, including two who were aided by slaves and Union sympathizers and two who floated down the Chattahoochee River until they were eventually rescued by the Union blockade vessel, U.S.S. Somerset. The remaining eight were exchanged as prisoners of war on March 17, 1863. The very first Medals of Honor were given to these men by Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton. Later, all but two of the other soldiers also received them (posthumously for those who had been executed). The two who have not received the Medal of Honor were executed but the story of their heroics was apparently lost in a paper shuffle at the War Department, and it took some lobbying for them to be appropriately honored. As civilians, Andrews and Campbell were not eligible.

 

The pursuit of Andrews' Raiders formed the basis of the Buster Keaton silent film The General and a dramatic 1956 Walt Disney film, The Great Locomotive Chase.{end quote}

 

csa251862wandarrdtl.jpg

 

This small change note was issued due to the obvious coin hoarding that went on all over the North and South during the Civil War, inasmuch as Northern entities issued small change notes, so did Southern ones during the first couple of years of the war before inflation rendered such amounts trivial. Curiously this note was accepted as noted by the state in payment of taxes, a degree of recognition on the part of the State of Georgia.

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Awesome story. I had no idea that happened. I don't think I heard about it in the Ken Burn's videos.

 

Thanks for sharing!

 

 

History Channel has devoted whole episodes to the story, while a major story at the time it was inconsequential in the annals of history so that it was not noteworthy enough to go into Ken Burn's tales. A lot of the source for Ken Burn's videos were Shelby Foote's books, and he did not delve into this story very much.

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History Channel has devoted whole episodes to the story, while a major story at the time it was inconsequential in the annals of history so that it was not noteworthy enough to go into Ken Burn's tales. A lot of the source for Ken Burn's videos were Shelby Foote's books, and he did not delve into this story very much.

 

 

Odd, I must miss it on the Hist Channel.

 

I once made an attempt to read a Shelby Foote book. I was about 13 years old and I don't think I made it past the first page. You ever tackle one of them?

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Cool note, and a fascinating story !!! Thanks :ninja:

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The pursuit of Andrews' Raiders formed the basis of the Buster Keaton silent film The General and a dramatic 1956 Walt Disney film, The Great Locomotive Chase.{end quote}

 

 

Never saw this note before - BUT I did know of The General. I had to watch the Buster Keaton film in a college class. . . Believe it or not, Film Appreciation was a humanities class! Watch a movie, write a 1/3 page report double spaced and you get an A.... I actually got in trouble on th efirst report as I wrote a page and a half ... :ninja:

 

Good movie though, and a great note!

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Believe it or not, Film Appreciation was a humanities class! Watch a movie, write a 1/3 page report double spaced and you get an A....

 

Still is a class. I'm stuck taking engineering classes to graduate and others have to watch apocalypse now for class... where did I go wrong?????? :ninja:

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Odd, I must miss it on the Hist Channel.

 

I once made an attempt to read a Shelby Foote book. I was about 13 years old and I don't think I made it past the first page. You ever tackle one of them?

 

 

He had a very acerbic manor of writing with almost arcane terminology. Which is why it was not easily consumed when written, but rather in television form.

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