Document Bank of Virginia

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The Southern Illustrated News was printed in Richmond from 1862 to 1865. The cartoon lampoons Lincoln’s revolving door of generals that had faced—and lost to—Southern armies in Virginia. After General Winfield Scott retired at the beginning of…

Along with the abolition of slavery, women's rights were also a topic for reformers. The woman suffrage movement began in 1848 at the first woman's rights convention, which was held in Seneca Falls, New York, with the participants calling for…

Enslaved Virginians were often hired out by their owners during the course of their servitude. Industries such as the Tredegar Iron Works in Richmond and the many iron and woolen mills throughout the state owned very few slaves, preferring instead to…

The Democratic Party split in two in 1860. John C. Breckinridge, vice president of the United States, became the presidential nominee of the faction sometimes referred to as the Southern Democrats. The party advocated the expansion of slavery into…

The Cigarette Label of Jefferson DavisAlthough they are simply pieces of paper, cigarette labels represent broader concepts and reflect the culture and the general values of a population.  It is important to analyze how the labels have changed…

This document is a parole slip that was given to the Confederate officer Captain James M. Garnett. It is dated April 10, 1865 and noted there is its location, Appomattox Court House, VA. The day prior, April 9, 1865, Confederate General Robert E. Lee…

This document is a circular sent out by W. H. Holden, dated March 4, 1869. Holden sent the circular to North Carolina, alerting them that there was a proposed Fifteenth Amendment that needed to be ratified by all of the states. The proposed amendment…

Cohabitation registers are among the most important genealogical resources for African Americans attempting to connect their family lines back through the oftentimes murky past to their enslaved ancestors. The registers date from 1866 and provide a…

The importance of slavery in the secession crisis and as a cause of the Civil War was well understood in 1861. Voters in the counties where the enslaved population was greatest elected more supporters of secession to the Virginia Convention than did…

This document is a petition from Edmund M. Bradford to President Andrew Johnson. In the petition Bradford seeks an official pardon for his role in the Confederate Army. Edmund M. Bradford of Norfolk was a graduate of West Point (1837) who served in…
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