The Limits of Sovereignty: Property Confiscation in the Union and the Confederacy during the Civil War

By Daniel W. Hamilton | Go to book overview

Notes

Introduction

1. “An Act to Confiscate Property Used for Insurrectionary Purposes,” 12 Statutes at Large 319 (1861) (hereinafter, the “First Confiscation Act”).

2. “An Act for the Sequestration of the Estates, Property and Effects of Alien Enemies and for the Indemnity of Citizens of the Confederate States and Persons Aiding the Same in the Existing War with the United States” (hereinafter, the “Sequestration Act”), in Acts and Resolutions of the Third Session of the Provisional Congress of the Confederate States (Richmond: Enquirer Book and Job Press, 1861), 57–67.

3. “An Act to Suppress Insurrection, to Punish Treason and Rebellion, to Seize and Confiscate the Property of Rebels, and for Other Purposes,” 12 Statutes at Large 589 (1862) (hereinafter, the “Second Confiscation Act”).

4. Confiscation was in use at other points during the antebellum period, most notably in the seizure of Native American land. William Fisher estimates that, of the two billion acres of land acquired from Native American tribes, “approximately one sixth was confiscated unilaterally by a federal statute or Executive Order without compensation.” William W. Fisher III, “Property and Power in American History,” in The History of Law in a Multicultural Society, ed. Ron Harris et al. (Burlington, Vermont: Ashgate, 1992), 393–405, 395.

5. Cooper v. Telfair, 4 Dallas 14 (1800), 15–17.

6. James M. McPherson, Abraham Lincoln and the Second American Revolution (New York: Oxford University Press, 1991).

7. In abolishing slavery in the territories, “Congress ignored the Dred Scott decision while defying its most memorable ruling.” Don E. Fehrenbacher, Slavery, Law, and Politics: The Dred Scott Case in Historical Perspective (New York: Oxford University Press, 1981), 297.

8. For James McPherson, “the second session of the 37th Congress was one of the most productive in American history” and, “by its legislation to finance

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