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Women Spies of The Civil War
Transcript of Women Spies of The Civil War
Every contributor in the war was important whether they contributed in a helping or hurting way. This is because if that person hadn't done the outcome could have differed.
Elizabeth Van Lew
Born on October 25th in 1818 in Richmond, Virginia
born into wealthy slave holding family
learned to dislike slavery while attending a Quaker school in Pennsylvania
She inherited the family business when her father died
Earned the nickname "Crazy Bet"
freed their families slaves and bought their relatives and freed them too
brought food and medicine to the union soldiers of Libby Prison in Richmond, Virginia
gathered information about the movement of confederate troops and smuggle it out of the prison.
helped prisoners escape by slipping them secret messages with information and directions to a safe house
Got a union sympathizer appointed to prison staff
Union General Benjamin Butler hired her to be the head of his spy network
Caught or Not?
Some people did know what Van Lew was doing and wrote about it in their paper without naming her. Then others found out what she was doing they gave sent her violent threats. That didn't deteriorate her, she continued her work helping the Union soldiers.
She had made a journal and told her nieces about her diary buried in the back yard but when she looked through it she noticed there were pages missing.
she became postmaster fro Richmond, Virginia for eight years
She was paid for her work in the war but was ostracized from Richmond society and labeled a spy.
lived off the money of donations from the families that she had helped in the civil war
struggling 30 year old actress in 1863
born in New Orleans
Employed in a Louisville playhouse
in her one play she had to toast someone and was dared to toast Jefferson Davis( she first asked federal provost for permission)
proclaimed a southern sympathizer she was expelled from the theater
In 1863 she got the chance to spy for the Union
became a camp follower for the confederacy army in Kentucky and Tennessee
her beauty aided her in obtaining information that would be valuable for the federal army
Caught or Not?
People did think she was suspicious and she was finally caught with secret papers. She was tried at a military court, that was tried by general Bragg, and was found guilty and sentenced to hang. Her sentence was delayed because of her health got bad. She got lucky when Bragg had to move his army and left her behind. She was rescued by Yankees at Shelbyville, Tennessee.
Lincoln made her an honorary major
She lectured about her adventures behind rebel lines
She tried acting again
Married two more times (for the second and third time) last one ending in a separation
Illness caused her to need opium, and with an intended overdose she died at age 60
In honor of her, Veterans of the Grand Army of the Republic paid tribute by making her burial with military honor in their San Francisco cemetery.
At the age of 17 years, a drunk Union soldier invaded their home and spoke offensively to her mom so she shot and killed him in 1861
Although she was acquitted of the crime she was closely watched by union soldiers
Born into a slave holding Virginian family in 1843. Born near Martinsburg, Virginia
used her charms and beauty to get information from Union officers and passed it along to the Confederacy
Began working as a courier between Confederate generals Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson and P.G.T. Beauregard
Jackson accreted her intelligence the reason he won some of the battles at Shenandoah Valley Campaign of 1862
May of 1862 she was staying with relatives in their building that had been taken over by the Union and would listen through a hole in the wall to their conversations
Caught or Not?
She was caught several times. She was warned many times to stop ans when she ignored the orders they sent her to live with a family in Front Royal, Virginia. She was arrested and sent to Old Capital Prison in Washington, DC in July of 1862. She was released in August and deported to Richmond but a little after she was found behind enemy lines and imprisoned for three more months. In 1864 she was caught trying to smuggle Confederate papers to England.
Boyd fled the country and soon married Samuel W. Hardinge, who was one of the Union officers who had detained her. He returned to the united States and was suspected to be a southern spy and was imprisoned. Soon after his release he died. Now a widow she wrote her two volume memoir and in 1865 she embarked on an acting career. She usually told of her experiences during the war. She remarried twice and died in Washington in 1900.
By Amanda DiAlessandro