Margaret Douglass


Virginia Teacher of Free Black Children

In the first half of the nineteenth century a number of slave rebellions occurred, which frightened white citizens and underscored the need to maintain tight control over the literacy of blacks. In June 1852 Margaret Douglass, a white former slaveholder from South Carolina, began a school for free black children in her home in [Read More ...]

Belle Edmondson


Civil War Spy and Smuggler

Belle Edmondson ardently supported the Confederacy during the Civil War. She probably began smuggling supplies and funds to the Confederate army in 1862, after the fall of Memphis, and served as a Confederate agent throughout the war. In July 1864, she fled south, because the United States had issued a warrant for her arrest.

Isabella [Read More ...]

Hallie Quinn Brown


Feminist, Author and Social Reformer

Hallie Quinn Brown was an abolitionist, educator, writer and women's rights activist in the Civil War era. She was born March 10, 1845 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, to former slaves, Thomas and Frances Scroggins Brown. Both were well-educated and actively involved with the Underground Railroad.

In 1864, in the midst of the Civil War, Hallie moved [Read More ...]

Rhea County Spartans


Female Confederate Cavalry Regiment

In the summer of 1862, 30 young women banded together to form the Spartans with the purpose of supporting their men in the Confederate cavalry. Still active during Federal occupation, some were accused of spying and arrested, but were eventually released. Reconstruction was hard on them, and most of the women left the area [Read More ...]

Sallie Myers


Civil War Nurse at Gettysburg

Elizabeth Salome 'Sallie' Myers was born at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania on June 24, 1842, the daughter of Peter and Mary Myers. Her father was a Justice of the Peace, and they were among the wealthier families in town. By 1863 Gettysburg was a thriving little community with 2,400 inhabitants, 190 of them African Americans.

At the [Read More ...]

Lucy Pickens


Queen of the Confederacy

Known during and after her lifetime as the Queen of the Confederacy, Lucy Pickens was described as "beautiful, brilliant and captivating" by her male contemporaries, and this perception of her helped shape the stereotype of the Southern belle.

Image: Lucy Holcombe Pickens in her 20s

Lucy Holcombe was born on June 11, 1832, on the Holcombe [Read More ...]