Friday, January 11, 2013

Negroes Driven South By The Rebel Officers

“Negroes Driven South By The Rebel Officers,” Harper’s Weekly, November 8, 1862

From Harper's Weekly, 8 November 1862, "RUNNING NEGROES SOUTH"  --  ON pages 712 and 713 we publish an illustration of an event of very frequent occurrence at the present time in Virginia namely, the DRIVING OF NEGROES SOUTH in order to escape the approach of our army. The poor creatures are collected in gangs, handcuffed or chained together, and driven off under the lash or at the point of the bayonet. One authority says:
A refugee from the vicinity of Leesburg states that a rebel cavalry force appeared in that place on Monday last and forcibly carried South all the negroes who had previously been collected together there, and placed in confinement, by order of General Lee.

The Times correspondent says:
While at Aldie, on Thursday last, two citizens, named Moore and Ball, came within our lines and were detained as prisoners. The first named is a son of the proprietor of Moore's flour mills, at Aldie, on a branch of Goose Creek, and the latter is a large planter in the same town. They had "done nothing," so they said, and were neither bushwhackers nor soldiers, and were surprised at being detained within our lines when so near their homes, from which they had been absent some time. Upon being questioned closely, they admitted that they had just come from the James River; and finally owned up that they had been running off "niggers" having just taken a large gang, belonging to themselves and neighbors, southward in chains, to avoid losing them under the emancipation proclamation. I understand, from various sources, that the owners of this species of property, throughout this section of the State, are moving it off toward Richmond as fast as it can be spared from the plantation; and the slaveholders boast that there will not be a negro left in all this part of the State by the 1st of January next.
Another correspondent says:
The rebels in Secessia are busily engaged just now in running off to Richmond and beyond, negroes and conscripts. A Union man, just from below Culpepper, says that he saw droves of negroes and white men on the road at different points—all strongly guarded. He does not exactly know which excited his pity most, the white or black men.  (source: Son of The South)

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