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Unionists in Virginia: Politics, Secession, and Their Plan to Prevent Civil War by Larry Denton

Presenter: 
Larry Denton
Duration: 
(01:04:10)

On October 29 at noon, Larry Denton will delivered a Banner Lecture entitled "Unionists in Virginia: Politics, Secession, and Their Plan to Prevent Civil War."Unionists in Virginia: Politics, Secession, and Their Plan to Prevent Civil WarWhether the Civil War was preventable is a debate that began shortly after Appomattox and continues today. But even earlier, in 1861, a group of Union-loyal Virginians—led by George Summers, John Brown Baldwin, John Janney, and Jubal Early—felt war was avoidable. In the statewide election for delegates to the Secession Convention that same spring, the Unionists defeated the Southern Rights Democrats with a huge majority of the votes across the state. These men unsuccessfully negotiated with Sec. of State William Henry Seward to prevent the national tragedy that would ensue. Author and historian Larry Denton traces this remarkable story of the Virginians who worked against all odds in a failed attempt to save a nation from going to war.Denton is the author of A Southern Star for Maryland: Maryland and the Secession Crisis; William Henry Seward and the Secession Crisis: The Effort to Prevent Civil War; and Unionists in Virginia: Politics, Secession and Their Plan to Prevent Civil War. He lectures widely throughout the mid-Atlantic. Now retired, he lives with his wife, Susan, near Oxford on the Eastern Shore of Maryland.