Indiana, a state in the Midwest, played an important role in supporting the Union during the American Civil War. Despite anti-war activity within the state, and southern Indiana's ancestral ties to the South, Indiana was a strong supporter of the Union. Indiana contributed approximately 210,000 Union soldiers, sailors, and marines. Indiana's soldiers served in 308 military engagements during the war; the majority of them in the western theater, between the Mississippi River and the Appalachian Mountains. Indiana's war-related deaths reached 25,028 (7,243 from battle and 17,785 from disease). Its state government provided funds to purchase equipment, food, and supplies for troops in the field. Indiana, an agriculturally rich state containing the fifth-highest population in the Union, was critical to the North's success due to its geographical location, large population, and agricultural production. Indiana residents, also known as Hoosiers, supplied the Union with manpower for the war effort, a railroad network and access to the Ohio River and the Great Lakes, and agricultural products such as grain and livestock. The state experienced two minor raids by Confederate forces, and one major raid in 1863, which caused a brief panic in southern portions of the state and its capital city, Indianapolis.
Indiana experienced significant political strife during the war, especially after GovernorOliver P. Morton suppressed the Democratic-controlled state legislature, which had an anti-war (Copperhead) element. Major debates related to the issues of slavery and emancipation, military service for African Americans, and the draft, ensued. These led to violence. In 1863, after the state legislature failed to pass a budget and
left the state without the authority to collect taxes, Governor Morton acted outside his state's constitutional authority to secure funding through federal and private loans to operate the state government and avert a financial crisis. (Full article...)
Neal Dow (March 20, 1804 – October 2, 1897) was an American Prohibition advocate and politician. Nicknamed the "Napoleon of Temperance" and the "Father of Prohibition", Dow was born to a Quaker family in Portland, Maine. From a young age, he believed alcohol to be the cause of many of society's problems and wanted to ban it through legislation. In 1850, Dow was elected president of the Maine Temperance Union, and the next year he was elected mayor of Portland. Soon after, largely due to Dow's efforts, the state legislature banned the sale and production of alcohol in what became known as the Maine law. Serving twice as mayor of Portland, Dow enforced the law with vigor and called for increasingly harsh penalties for violators. In 1855, his opponents rioted and he ordered the state militia to fire on the crowd. One man was killed and several wounded, and when public reaction to the violence turned against Dow, he chose not to seek reelection.
Dow was later elected to two terms in the Maine House of Representatives, but retired after a financial scandal. He joined the Union Army shortly after the outbreak of the American Civil War in 1861, eventually attaining the rank of brigadier general. He was wounded at the siege of Port Hudson and later captured. After being exchanged for another officer in 1864, Dow resigned from the military and devoted himself once more to prohibition. He spoke across the United States, Canada, and Great Britain in support of the cause. In 1880, Dow headed the Prohibition Party ticket for President of the United States. After losing the election, he continued to write and speak on behalf of the prohibition movement for the rest of his life until his death in Portland at the age of 93. (Full article...)