Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Tennessee people affirm secession > 2 to 1

  • The people of Tennessee in public referendum affirm the “Declaration of Independence and Ordinance dissolving the federal relations between the State of Tennessee and the United States of America” by a statewide vote of 108,339 to 47,233. By this referendum, the voters of Tennessee formalize the legislature’s May decision to secede from the United States. The vote, like the one in the legislature on May 6, is largely along geographic lines. Middle and West Tennessee vote for secession while East Tennessee generally opposes it./1861
  • All Virginia State Militia are transferred to the authority of the Confederate States Government today. As a consequence of losing a relatively small battle at Philippi, western Virginia Brig. Gen. Robert Edward Lee’s command is transferred to Confederate commander, Brig. Gen. Robert Seldon Garnett by Governor John Letcher, putting Lee out of command.   When Garnett dies in August, Lee will return to command as a Confederate Major General, but he will be unable to dislodge Union troops in western Virginia, and will again be replaced, to return to Richmond as a military advisor to President Davis. The counties of northwestern Virginia will remain under Union military control, encouraging loyal citizens in the area to form a new state./1861
  • In a far-sighted move pointing toward a more centralized federal government under the Lincoln Administration, US Secretary of War Simon Cameron authorizes creation of the United States Sanitary Commission, a civilian group to maintain hospitals, hire and staff a nursing corps, gather donated supplies, and raise funds. A forerunner of a Department of Public Health, even before there was a medical department within the War Department other than battlefield surgeons, the Sanitary Commission would handle responsibilities of military sanitation, nutrition, disease, and care of the sick during the War. /1861

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