Cover image for Divided hearts : Britain and the American Civil War
Divided hearts : Britain and the American Civil War
Blackett, R. J. M., 1943-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Baton Rouge : Louisiana State University Press, [2001]

Physical Description:
xiii, 273 pages ; 24 cm

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
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E469.8 .B66 2001 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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This work explores the passionate political strife that raged in Britain as a result of the American Civil War. Moving beyond Mary Ellison's 1972 landmark regional study of Lancashire cotton workers' reactions, R.J.M. Blackett opens the subject to a new, wider transatlantic context of influence and undertakes a deftly researched and written sociological, intellectual and political examination of who in Britain supported the Union, who the Confederacy, and why.

Author Notes

R. J. M. Blackett is Moores Professor of History and African American Studies at the University of Houston.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

Through extraordinarily thorough newspaper research, Blackett identifies the class, religious, and political affiliations of hundreds of participants in the debate in England concerning the position Britons and the British government should take regarding the American Civil War. He relates their positions to the evolution of the British antislavery movement and to the efforts for political reform of the British governmental system. While some took eccentric stances, Blackett concludes that Anglican ministers, conservatives opposed to franchise extension in Britain, and textile factory owners backed the Confederacy's efforts for independence. Non-Anglican ministers, advocates of political reform and trade union rights, and most slavery abolition supporters backed the Union. The author examines how these views were publicized, paying special attention to the activities of African Americans in Britain on behalf of the Union and emancipation. Blackett consistently and persuasively counters the conclusion of Mary Ellison (Support for Secession: Lancashire and the American Civil War, Chicago, CH, Jul'73) that Lancashire workers largely supported recognition of the Confederacy in order to ease the hardships caused by the wartime cotton famine. A summary conclusion of findings is, unfortunately, lacking, but this work belongs in all college libraries as the best and most comprehensive investigation of this subject to date. J. W. Auld California State University, Dominguez Hills

Table of Contents

Acknowledgmentsp. xi
Introductionp. 1
1 America: Its Politics, Its Society, and Its Warp. 6
2 Have We Departed from the Faith of Our Fathers?p. 48
3 Which Side Are You On?p. 89
4 To Reach the Peoplep. 122
5 Reaching the Peoplep. 169
6 The Assassination of President Lincolnp. 213
Bibliographyp. 245
Indexp. 265