When the Civil War erupted in April 1861, many on both sides of the conflict had expected it to be a short-lived war. But nearly two years later, after several big battles and horrific numbers of casualties, President Abraham Lincoln was compelled to sign the first Enrollment Act — instituting the first wartime draft in American history on March 3, 1863. The move 150 years ago during the Civil War was a controversial step. But the conflict was dragging on far longer than any had expected and the Union wasn’t raising enough troops for combat by other means. Thus, Lincoln needed more manpower for the fight, much as the Confederacy did in resorting to a draft months earlier. The act required enrollment of every male citizen ages 20-45, with certain exemptions, and male immigrants of that age who had signed intent of becoming U.S. citizens. Nonetheless, exemptions from the draft could be bought for $300 each draft period, or by finding a substitute draftee. Those exemptions would lead to violent riots for days in July 1863 in New York City, when the first inductees were called. Fueling the draft riots was widespread outrage that such exemptions could only be afforded by the wealthy, making the conflict a “poor man’s fight.” Months later, the $300 “commutation fee” would be repealed by Congress. The Associated Press reports more fighting, near Franklin, Tenn., as 2,000 rebels are repelled by Union forces and compelled to retreat. AP reporters 70 prisoners have been seized by Union forces in Tennessee and some were being kept under heavy guard in shackles on suspicion of “murder” in the death of Union soldiers elsewhere.
Lincoln signs Enrollment Act to draft new troops
Bryan Collins: Spring cleaning
As this article is being written, the next day’s weather forecast is for that powerful polar vortex to once again dip down into our area, producing cold temperatures and maybe even a little frozen precipitation.
Church news and notes
The Rev. G. David Henderson: Experiencing God’s fingers
I never preach other ministers’ sermons, nor do I get them from religious books. The method I use to select my pastoral sermons and newspaper devotionals is I know the Holy Spirit is hidden in a scripture, word or words within a scripture, waiting for me to find him, to teach me his interpretations of the Scriptures.
How to watch 'difficult' movies
Last week I finally saw "Schindler's List." Yes, that "Schindler's List" - the Oscar-winning Spielberg movie that earned wide acclaim for its vivid and sensitive portrayal of the Holocaust. It came out 21 years ago, and I've been meaning to see it ever since.
Chester V. Clark III: That first love
I found it in a box of tangled cables and antiquated gadgets. Of course “antiquated” is a relative term, meaning only a few short years when it comes to electronics. It had once been the latest and greatest of the new frontier of smartphones. Just seeing it brought back the memories.
Redesigned Mazda3 among best new small cars
Mazda must be dabbling in black magic.
How else can you explain the fact that this relatively small Japanese company is doing what no one else in the car industry seems to have figured out? They’re building cars that get amazing gas mileage and are exhilarating to drive at the same time.
This Week in The Civil War, for week of Sunday, Feb. 9
Union forces kept up harassing tactics against Confederate forces in Virginia this week 150 years ago in the Civil War.
Bryan Collins: Our friend Jesus
Making friends is not always an easy task for everyone. Some people are outgoing and easygoing. Extroverts thrive on knowing and being liked by many other people. There are others who are more shy and reserved who are completely satisfied having fewer, closer friends.
‘Overdressed’ author rescheduled for Dalton State
A lecture by Elizabeth Cline, the New York fashion writer and author of “Overdressed: The Shockingly High Cost of Cheap Fashion,” has been rescheduled for Thursday, Feb. 13, at 6:30 p.m. in the Goodroe Auditorium at Dalton State College.
This Week in The Civil War, for week of Sunday, Feb. 2
Union Maj. Gen William Sherman began moving thousands of federal troops toward Meridian, Miss., this week 150 years ago in the Civil War, aiming to occupy and destroy the vital railroad junction there — a supply route for the Confederacy.
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