Civil War Spies

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Ever wonder how people back then got their information needed to figure out who their enemies or who were the ones that went behind their back? Well you see back then people didnt get their information needed off the internet or from any electronic sources. Instead how most people got their information was through people who were considered as spies. Back then all their information was from out through spies. Spies from the civil war were people who would be under cover and find information of their enemies and report it back to their general.

Even when the Union or the Confederacy had a good type of of military. All of their knowledge helped them throughout the civil war. But, as said before ever side had their own spies who helped them get the information needed from the other side to which they were against. Around the mid 1861, the General George B. McClellan hired the a detective who was named Allan Pinkerton to set up the first union espionage which was a organization. Allan Pinkerton was the founder of of his own detective agency which was located in Chicago. After Pinkerton collected some intelligence and gave all the information that he had collected and then reported it back to the Union general which was general George B. McClellan was the only general that Pinkerton worked for.

Rose ONeal Greenhow was one of the first spies that Pinkerton was going after. A little after the first battle of the Bull Run, Pinkerton caught Rose and put her under surveillance but then later they captured her. Luckily, Greenhow was freed in July 1862, but got sent to Richmond. Around the year of 1861, coded reports were sent across the Potomac to Jordan who was all about the plan of the federal invasion. Bettie Duvall who was a young woman and was a courliers went undercover as a farm girl that way she was able to pass the union sentinelese which was leaving Washington. Then afterwards she rode to Virginia to deliver her. She didnt just report the information she had captured to some random person, she reported it to the confederate officers.

One famous spy from the civil war was Pauline Cushman. Cushman was born originally as Harriet Wood. Before the war, Pauline was a New- Orleans actress who would travel the whole country. Cushman then later became a union spy in 1861. After getting promoted by the Confederates she later got hired as Pauline Cushman. Pauline was dared by a Confederate officer, while she was performing in Louisville, Kentucky. Later that evening, Pauline herself contacted the union army and volunteered to toast in a way to flatter herself towards the confederates. Later Cushman, quickly started her work, she started to gather information from their enemies or the other side and as soon as possible they reported it. Cushman then later served as a federal courier before she got suspected by the Confederate and then later got arrested. Another young spy was Antonia Ford, who was surprisingly born into a family who had lots of money. . Antonia was only 23 years old, to when she got provided by her intelligence and started working for the confederate general.

In any type of war, you didnt just show your loyalty by some sort of speech or anybodys appearance. Elizabeth Van Lew joined along with the some other Richmond unionist. They combined together to create an underground to delay the Confederate war effort, and to be able to help the soldiers that were ill and to help those soldiers who were held captive. There were many former slaves and some southern unionist who gave their knowledge to help the Union forces. Rebel Rose or Greenhow which was from Washington D.C and Belle Boyd who was from Virginia were celebrated in a Romantic Age. Afterall, every side both north or south, east or west, they each ended up having spies both males and females, for any side to gather up information that was needed from their enemies, and all to know their next move or to know their whole plan, all in order to be prepared and ready for war that was coming toward them.

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Civil War Spies. (2019, May 08). Retrieved April 20, 2024 , from

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