We have been taught that the North was united behind Lincoln in his war. This is simply not true. It is an outright lie told and taught by the victors of the war who, after implementing the government (“public”) schools called for by Karl Marx in his Communist Manifesto, now control education in this land.

As a Copperhead, I was recently looking at the archives on the Wisconsin Historical Society’s internet site. I found some interesting information that debunks the false history we have been taught.

By the time of Lincoln’s re-election, he had shut down (often burning down) opposition newspapers in the North, imprisoned anyone who dared to voice any opposition, or even who failed to openly support him. Anyone who opposed him and his war was labeled a poisonous, deadly, and dangerous snake – a Copperhead.

A book of cartoons was published in Philadelphia in 1863 titled Ye Book of Copperheads. It depicted those who disagreed Lincoln as dangerous copperhead snakes, as seen in this cartoon from the book of a snake being killed:

Some of Lincoln’s Northern opponents adopted the smear term Copperhead as a symbol of pride, and cut the Liberty head out of the copper pennies (which were then the size of today’s quarters) and wore them as pins, etc., identifying the name Copperhead with Liberty!

Although opposition to Lincoln had been largely silenced by the 1864 election, there were still a few voices courageously being raised against him. One such voice was that of Marcus Mills Pomeroy, editor of the La Crosse (Wisconsin) Daily Democrat.

Pomeroy’s August 24th. 1864 editorial fearlessly blames Lincoln for the crippled and maimed men, the widows of the dead, the orphans, and the girls forced into prostitution:

 Look At lt.

Look at the picture of Abraham Lincoln, the widow maker, who swore to support the constitution of the country and who has broken his oath and disregarded his vows oftener than any man living. He was the pillar of fire which was to lead us from troubles of rebellion. His was the brain which comprehended the situation. His were the lips which said that no one would be hurt! His was the plan which would save the country and capture Richmond. We want people to look upon his face — to read his history — to obtain the record of his acts — to acquaint themselves with his ability — to weep over the homes he has made desolate — to gaze upon the army of crippled and maimed men he is sending home to take the places of the perfect ones he called away — to count the widows he has made by his clownish blunderings — to look at the city police records of girls forced into houses of prostitution to escape starvation — to count, if figures will do it, the millions of orphans he has made to groan, and toil, and sweat under the taxation his hell born administration has entailed upon the land, and then shout in joy —

“Hurrah for Abe Lincoln the widow maker of the 19th century!” Don’t he look well? Is not his picture perfect, made either with pen or pencil?

The other editorial was published a few days earlier on August 15th, 1864, in which he tells of the broken families, the millions of orphans and widows Lincoln has made, and describes Lincoln as the greatest widow maker God ever cursed mankind with and says that Lincoln has ruined the country:

A thing of beauty is a JOY forever, and thus it is that the countenance of the illustrious President of the United States to whose lack of ability and incompetency this country is indebted for much of her present ruin, misfortune and desolation, is beloved by his minions who live from his offices. Let the poor man who cannot earn sufficient to live on look at his face and learn to love it if he can. Let the oppressed tax payer think how wide the change since the widow maker took his seat in the House, and then bless our noble President if it is in his heart so to do!

Let the broken families — the deserted tenements — the ruined hopes of millions of orphans — the million of widows he has made in four years look upon his face not as that of an honest man or a statesman equal to the emergency, but as the fanatical tool of fanatics — the greatest widow maker God ever cursed mankind with. What he has done for his country? Ruined it! He has filled the land with fear and mourning. He has caused a million of brave men to be sacrificed for nothing. He has made all former Presidents statesman glorious. He has scattered smutty jokes and bones of soldiers over the land as a novice sows oats. He has disgusted his own party and won the contempt of every man who is not one of his minions, or a paid tool who can with pointed bayonet or specious lies terrify and insult the people who have placed him in power, and who in November will hurl him from the throne.

Look on the face of the illustrious incompt — throw up your hats — burn oil as of yore — let the welkin ring with shouts for Abraham Lincoln the widow maker of the 19th century Why don’t you ratify? Why don’t the people speak his name in praise, and trill it forth in song as erst they did? Why are not the Lincoln flags floating from the poles as once they did? Come you minions and paid enthusiasts — form a procession — march to the grave yards — throw to the breeze a flag with skull and crossbones painted thereon in black, and shout in drunken glee for your pet the widow maker. He is the man!

In this editorial he mentions Lincoln’s smutty jokes. Although suppressed from history, Lincoln was well known for his smutty jokes and contempt for and ridicule of Christianity. He was not the Christian saint we have been taught to believe.

A 1951 copy of the Wisconsin Magazine of History quotes an editorial by Pomeroy:

The man who votes for Lincoln now is a traitor and murderer. He who pretending to war for, wars against the constitution of our country is a traitor, and Lincoln is one of these men. . . . And if he is elected to misgovern for another four years, we trust some bold hand will pierce his heart with dagger point for the public good.

In reference to the above editorial, it should be noted that the Constitution defines treason as levying war against any of the States. That is exactly what Lincoln did, and so the Constitution declared Lincoln a traitor.

The Appleton, Wisconsin Crescent quoted a suggested epitaph for Lincoln:

Beneath this turf the Widow Maker lies, Little in everything, except in size

Marcus Mills Pomeroy, according to information on the Wisconsin Historical Society web site, was originally taken in by the Lincoln propaganda and was a supporter of the war and an opponent of secession. He changed his views, however, and subsequently reasoned that South Carolina was forced out “for her own protection.” Pomeroy revised his views on secession agreeing with Greely that the South should be let go in peace. He spent about two months in Arkansas at the headquarters of the Army of the Southwest and saw the horrors of the battlefield, and the social evils of the war. He chronicled these observations for newspapers across the land, and his constant criticism of the army led Union General Prentiss to order him to leave the army headquarters. Prentiss threatened to bring Pomeroy up on charges of treason and arrest him as a spy if he ever returned.

Watching a lot of 500 pine coffins being unloaded at the St. Louis wharves brought this reaction from Pomeroy:

These rough, brown, cheap, worm-eaten coffins, piled up there like oyster cans, silently waiting to fold their wooden arms about our sons, brothers and fathers, rather took the poetry out of the shoulder straps and goldcovered cord to be seen strutting around, giving orders to the glory-hunters in plain blue.

Pomeroy also wrote of his “education” while in Arkansas, as he saw that dealing in confiscated cotton seemed to be the prime activity of the army:

If the enemy is to be conquered, why in God’s great name do we not march troops to battle, instead of cotton fields?… Give us war or give us peace. This army has, for nine months, been stealing cotton, mules and niggers… The army cannot fight and steal at the same time

He also wrote:

The army is rotten: not in its body, but its heads. The war is dishonest. It was begun by people on one side to save themselves, on the other to save the Union; but it has become, through the corruption of Lincoln’s court and official missions, but a murderous crusade for plunder and party power. Its aim is to create a moneyed aristocracy—compel the people to support it—and the time shall come, if God will spare my life, when the people who are being murdered shall know the crime committed against them. I will gain an audience first, and then—woe betide the party in power. I will be no party to this robbery. They may denounce me but their children will not, for they shall know the truth… This war is not being carried on to preserve the Union. Such talk is all bosh. Once in the country simplicity of our heart, we thought so; but the truth has dawned upon our vision, full and clear.

Abraham Lincoln is the traitor. It is he who has warred upon the Constitution. We have not… He has broken his oath—lent himself to corruptionists and fanatics…

 When Lincoln sought re-election, Pomeroy wrote:

May Almighty God forbid that we are to have two terms of the rottenist, most stinking, ruin-working smallpox ever conceived by fiends or mortals, in the shape of two terms of Abe Lincoln’s administration.

Pomeroy realized that he would be accused of treason, and his life and property were threatened by the radicals. Patrick Henry’s sentiments “If this be treason, make the most of it” were also his. He wrote:

The people do not want this war. Tax payers do not wish it. Widows, orphans and overtaxed working men do not ask or need this waste of men, blood, and treasure.

There is no glory to be won in a civil war, no more than in a family quarrel. If politicians would let this matter come before the people there would be an honorable peace within sixty days. But so long as blind leaders govern and fanaticism rules the day, so long will there be war, tears, and desolation. It might be treason to write this. But we cannot help it. If the truth be treason, this is the heighth of it, but such treason will find a cordial “Amen” in thousands of hearts both in and out of the army.

Regarding slavery, Pomeroy did not endorse it or support the institution, but held that the United States government lacked authority to intervene. He shared the opinion of many if not most in the North that freed Negroes, moving northward, threatened the position of free white labor in the North.

In 1860 Lincoln received only 56% of the vote in Wisconsin. In the 1864 election, in spite of voter suppression and intimidation, arresting and imprisoning those who spoke out against Lincoln, etc. there were still 44.1% of the voters (65,884 men) who were brave enough to go to the polls in Wisconsin and cast their votes against Lincoln.

And then there were the draft riots in Wisconsin, but that is another story. Pomeroy claimed that the Conscription Act crushed

“the sovereign power of the States,” that it contradicted American tradition, and that it made Lincoln a despot—a “permanent ruler of the nation.” He stated his beliefs boldly: “The late Conscription act… is one that elevates Abraham Lincoln to the position of MILITARY DICTATOR…

No, the North was NOT unanimous in its support of Lincoln. There was much opposition, particularly in Wisconsin.


Wisconsin Copperhead Anti-War Movement and Marcus ‘Brick’ Pomeroy,N:4294963828-4294963805&dsNavOnly=N:1129&dsRecordDetails=R:CS3066

La Crosse Daily Democrat 8/15/1864-

La Crosse Daily Democrat 8/24/1864-

Wisconsin Magazine of History: Volume 35, number 2, winter, 1951-

John Battell

John Battell is a retired pastor and schoolteacher from Wisconsin.

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