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Financial Fraud and Guerrilla Violence in Missouri's Civil War, 1861-1865

by Mark W. Geiger

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1011,490,727 (4.13)1
This highly original work explores a previously unknown financial conspiracy at the start of the American Civil War. The book explains the reasons for the puzzling intensity of Missouri’s guerrilla conflict, and for the state’s anomalous experience in Reconstruction. In the broader history of the war, the book reveals for the first time the nature of military mobilization in the antebellum United States.… (more)
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I found this to be an insightful monograph that essentially asks the broad question of why the American Civil War seemed unusually violent in the state of Missouri. By means of economic analysis and a lot of old-fashioned archival sleuthing the author comes to the conclusion that the extra-legal means secessionist sympathizers adopted to get their military effort off the ground blew up in their faces, when the loans floated by the men running the secession-friendly state banks could not be converted into bonds by a secessionist government that was not master of its own state. The denouement coming when the day of reckoning arrived for repayment of the loans and real assets were liquidated at auction to pay the bills, leading to the destruction of Missouri's planter/agribusiness class; but not before the young men of this class were drawn into the guerrilla warfare Missouri became notorious for. ( )
  Shrike58 | Oct 10, 2017 |
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This highly original work explores a previously unknown financial conspiracy at the start of the American Civil War. The book explains the reasons for the puzzling intensity of Missouri’s guerrilla conflict, and for the state’s anomalous experience in Reconstruction. In the broader history of the war, the book reveals for the first time the nature of military mobilization in the antebellum United States.

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