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After the Gold Rush — August Chapter Roundup
Southern states began to secede even before Lincoln was inaugurated. Soon after, the new president of the Confederate States, Jefferson Davis, issued a call for 100,000 men from the seceded states’ militias to “defend the new Confederacy.”
With the Confederate attack on Fort Sumter, Lincoln issued a proclamation on April 15, calling for 75,000 troops from the Union’s state militias to suppress the rebellion.
In California, there would be no draft. Lincoln needed California’s men to continue mining gold and silver to support the Union. But San Francisco’s leaders— literary, business and spiritual— grappled with an internal threat: the secretive secessionist Knights of the Golden Circle, who were amassing Southerners and arms for a rebellion to carry California out of the Union.
Bombardment of Fort Sumter, Charleston Harbor by Currier and Ives (c. 1861)
You can read the book from the beginning, in order, here:
Chapter 27 - Secession Begins: Jessie Frémont, Bret Harte, Thomas Starr King
Chapter 28 - Asbury Harpending and the Knights of the Golden Circle
Chapter 29 - Ted & Anna Judah and the Transcontinental Railroad
Chapter 30 - Maria Amparo Ruiz de Burton Goes to Washington
Chapter 31 - The Inaugural Address of President Lincoln Inaugurates Civil War
Chapter 32 - Ted & Anna Judah Meet The Associates
Chapter 33 - The Civil War in San Francisco: Michael, Charles & Gus de Young
Browse the Table of Contents:
New chapters will post weekly in September on the After the Gold Rush website.
In next month’s chapters, California and the rest of the country face a long and bloody conflict, and we will see two unforgettable characters and soon-to-be-famous American authors burst onto the scene. The Civil War would ultimately bring both Mark Twain and Ambrose Bierce to California to make their literary fortune in San Francisco—via quite opposite paths. 25-year-old Samuel Clemens fled to the West to avoid serving in the war; 19-year-old abolitionist Ambrose Bierce enlisted on the very day war was declared, and would later write of his horrific wartime experiences in his blistering short stories.
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