Sunday, May 16, 2010

Restoring Civil Government

Today at Brandy Station: May 16, 1864

The Culpeper County Government reconvened today (the first time since November 7, 1863)and called for elections to restore Civil Government.

Twelve days ago, the Army of the Potomac pulled up stakes and entered the Wilderness. Now, with the exception of the remains of the Ninth Corps passing through to Orange County and some Virginia Cavalry patrolling the region, life is getting quiet. Of course they were unaware that the Army or Northern Virginia or the Army of the Potomac would not cross the Rapidan or the Rappahannock again. For the most part, the war in Culpeper County was over.

It is now up to the County to try to reestablish a government. The provost marshal's are gone and with them a level of law and order that had been in place since the previous November. The elections were held a week later and the Culpeper County citizens did have a challenge as many of those elected were considered shirkers or out right cowards. There was probably little support for these administrators and even less faith.

How do you start up a civilian government in Virginia when you are behind enemy lines?
The land has been stripped, few farms have the resources to plant, and there is little money. Times are indeed going to be tough.

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