Abstract

In 1863, along the southern periphery of the American Civil War, a Union Brigadier General began recruiting Southern white men into a Union cavalry regiment known as the First Florida Cavalry (US). This study investigates the regiment and those who enlisted in it to show the fluidity of Southern loyalty during the Civil War and the conditions of the Deep South Homefront that existed on the periphery of Union occupation and continue to exist on the periphery of Civil War historiography. While scholars have recently addressed many aspects of Southern dissent in the Civil War, significantly less attention has been given to those who fought in the Union ranks. Utilizing previously unused archival materials paired with geospatial mapping, this study reveals the lives of Southerners who enlisted and their homeland. It examines both those who formed the regiment and those who enlisted in it. This analysis illuminates common soldier experience in the Sectional Conflict's Southern borderland. This study concludes that the volatile nature of loyalty and the needs of the homefront in the Deep South encouraged both Union generals to form the First Florida Cavalry and Southerners to enlist in it. While this assessment analyzes only several hundred men, it provides insights into the larger populations of Southern Union soldiers throughout the Deep South and their competing loyalties to nation and community.

Graduation Date

2018

Semester

Spring

Advisor

Gannon, Barbara

Degree

Master of Arts (M.A.)

College

College of Arts and Humanities

Department

History

Degree Program

History

Format

application/pdf

Identifier

CFE0006984

URL

http://purl.fcla.edu/fcla/etd/CFE0006984

Language

English

Release Date

May 2018

Length of Campus-only Access

None

Access Status

Masters Thesis (Open Access)

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