House Divided: Collapse of the Confederacy II

Lead: One hundred and fifty years ago the Republic was facing its greatest crisis. This continuing series examines the American Civil War. It is "A House Divided."

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: With the prospect of their dream of independence teetering on the brink of disaster, in the winter of 1865 Confederate leaders began to consider a solution to their military manpower problem that would have been unthinkable just four years before. They debated and then passed a bill offering freedom to African Americans who would fight in the rebel ranks.

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House Divided: Collapse of the Confederacy I

Lead: One hundred and fifty years ago the Republic was facing its greatest crisis. This continuing series examines the American Civil War. It is "A House Divided."

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: As the terrible, cold, wet winter of 1865 slowly blended into spring, the dreams of Southern independence flickered and then died. What began with such great hopes just four years before, sustained by enormous white sacrifice, enduring in the face of almost irresistible opposition and odds, teetered on the precipice of historical reality. The South had sought to arrest or at least block the revolutionary changes, in population, industrialization, urban life and in shifting attitudes toward a more powerful Federal engagement in the lives of citizens that, in Southerners’ views, had infected other regions. The southland’s preference for aristocratic social structure, family, religion, rural life and, most of all, the institution of slavery, were under assault. To save its society and particularly its peculiar tradition of human bondage, the South would break the sacred bonds of Union and strike out on its own.

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First Ladies: Margaret Smith Taylor

Lead: The wife of Zachary Taylor, hero of the Mexican War and 12th President of the United States, passed most of her marriage moving from one frontier army post to another. Her fifteen months in the White House were spent largely in seclusion.

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Born in Calvert County, Maryland, the daughter of a well-to planter and veteran of the Revolutionary War, Margaret Smith met her future husband while visiting relatives in Kentucky. They were married the following year and began the nomadic life that enveloped his nearly four decades of military service. Insisting on going with Zachary to the many wilderness stations to which he was posted, she raised her four surviving children in crude wintertime log cabins and warm weather army tents. Against their wishes, daughter Sarah eloped with young Lt. Jefferson Davis, the future President of the Confederacy. She died of malaria after only three months of marriage. Margaret’s favorite post was Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and from there she received the news of her husband’s exploits in the Mexican War.

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First Ladies: Mamie Doud Eisenhower

Lead: Through the years of lonely separation and worry that are part of the life of a military spouse, Mamie Geneva Doud Eisenhower never liked it but loved her Kansas farm boy and was there for the long haul.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Dwight Eisenhower was a second lieutenant fresh from West Point when he first laid eyes on Mamie Geneva Doud, daughter of a wealthy Denver family who wintered in San Antonio. She was standing on the porch of the Officer’s Club at Fort Sam Houston when as Officer of the Day he walked by on his rounds. She thought he was the most handsome male she had ever seen; he was struck with her vivacious personality and attractive, saucy looks. They were married in the summer of 1916.

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The Know-Nothing Party II

Lead: Formed to resist the flood of immigrants in the 1850s, the Know-Nothing Party made prejudice pay big dividends at the ballot box.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: By 1853 the Order of United Americans had chapters in towns all over the country. Riding a wave of resentment against the huge influx of German and Irish immigrants, the Order was better known as the Know-Nothing movement. Legend says that it took its name from what members said to questions about the Order's secret meetings - "I know nothing."

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The Know-Nothing Party I

Lead: In 1854 the Know-Nothing Party riding a wave of anti-immigrant prejudice, rolled up victory after victory. Except for the pre-Civil War Republicans, it was the best third party showing in American history.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: The United States is nation of immigrants. Beginning with the Jamestown Colony in 1607, successive waves of aliens have sought a new life and prosperity in what they considered to be a land of opportunity. Crowding out the original Native Americans, whose ancient ancestors actually may have themselves emigrated from the eastern Asia, more strangers arrived each decade in search of a new home. Within a couple of generations, their families now firmly established, many of the newcomers considered themselves "native Americans" and looked with barely tolerant superiority at the next batch of immigrants spilling onto the docks of Boston, Philadelphia, and New York.

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A House Divided: (35) – Origin of Taps

Lead:  One hundred and fifty years ago the Republic was facing its greatest crisis. This continuing series examines the American Civil War. It is A House Divided.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Despite appalling losses on both sides, Robert E. Lee’s rebel forces had hammered and ultimately thwarted the timid George C. McClellan’s grand attempt to take Richmond, the Confederate capital, in spring 1862. During the Seven Day’s Battles in June, the Union Army had been forced to retreat southeast to Harrison’s Landing. Many of the units in the Army of the Potomac bivouacked on Berkeley Plantation, the mansion of which was built in 1726. Berkeley is situated on a bluff above the James River and is the traditional home of the Harrison family which sired two Presidents of the United States.

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First Ladies: Rosalynn Carter

Lead: By the time they reached the White House in 1977, Rosalynn and Jimmy Carter were beyond close, they were a political and personal team that regarded each other as full and equal partners.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Eleanor Rosalynn Smith grew up just a few miles from her husband in the tiny west Georgia town of Plains. She was the oldest of four and very close to her father, a farmer and auto mechanic, and Rosalynn always worked hard to succeed and to please her loving but strict parents. When Mr. Smith died of leukemia in the early 1940s, Rosalynn was forced to assume many responsibilities in the home, but she excelled academically and after high school studied at a nearby junior college. One of her best friends was Ruth Carter, whose brother Jimmy was three years older, a cadet at the Naval Academy in Annapolis. They had known each other all of their lives, but never were interested. That changed dramatically in 1945, and in a year they were married.

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