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A Secret Society History of the Civil War$
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Mark A. Lause

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780252036552

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252036552.001.0001

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Epilogue: Long Shadows

Epilogue: Long Shadows

Lineages of the Secret Society Tradition in America

(p.141) Epilogue: Long Shadows
A Secret Society History of the Civil War

Mark A. Lause

University of Illinois Press

This epilogue examines the lineages of the secret society tradition in America. The lineages of the mid-nineteenth-century American secret societies persisted through the rest of the century and beyond. Certainly, such secret societies—or the idea of them—haunted the closing events of the conflict from Washington to the Rio Grande. Workers and radicals built upon the legacy of groups like the Ourvrier Circle of the Brotherhood of the Union, though they began abandoning secrecy within a generation of the Civil War. Nevertheless, secret societies and conspiracies became an essential feature of the carefully constructed postwar perception that an underlying order had somehow survived the chaos of war.

Keywords:   secret society traditions, American secret societies, Ourvier Circle, Brotherhood of the Union, Civil War, conspiracies

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