Congratulations to UVA History PhD Brian Neumann on his newly published book, Bloody Flag of Anarchy: Unionism in South Carolina during the Nullification Crisis!
“Generations of scholars have debated why the Union collapsed and descended into civil war in the spring of 1861. Turning this question on its head, Brian C. Neumann’s Bloody Flag of Anarchy asks how the fragile Union held together for so long. This fascinating study grapples with this dilemma by reexamining the nullification crisis, one of the greatest political debates of the antebellum era, when the country came perilously close to armed conflict in the winter of 1832–33 after South Carolina declared two tariffs null and void. Enraged by rising taxes and the specter of emancipation, 25,000 South Carolinians volunteered to defend the state against the perceived tyranny of the federal government. Although these radical Nullifiers claimed to speak for all Carolinians, the impasse left the Palmetto State bitterly divided. Forty percent of the state’s voters opposed nullification, and roughly 9,000 men volunteered to fight against their fellow South Carolinians to hold the Union together.”