The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 83, July 1979 - April, 1980 Page: 95
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as any sane researcher must, he had to call halt to his digging, else a
broad-ranging inquiry of this sort would never be completed. As Mc-
Crary knows, additional source collections exist, such as the Smith-
Brady investigation commission report, concerning occupied Louisiana.
In correspondence, McCrary and I concurred that their exploitation
might have added useful detail to Lincoln and . . . The Louisiana Ex-
periment. But my Smith-Brady copies and transcripts suggest that none
of McCrary's basic judgments would likely have been altered by their
use. And so, I carp not at all on the score of relevant but essentially cor-
roborative research omissions. Instead I applaud McCrary's brave and
imaginative purposes and achievements.
Here is a description and analysis of an entire state's society and
politics as affected by national military occupation and its resulting
(bilt by no means inevitable) political and racial democratization. Mc-
Crary considers carefully the novelty of federal intrastate interventions
in a state-based society where, in 1861, no national institution had
backlogs of relevant experience, talent, or confident authority. Only a
year after the dismal takeover of Fort Sumter, where the national gov-
ernment could not protect a handful of soldiers in one of its own forts, it
mounted a substantial combined operation (the most difficult military
effort) and, half a continent away, began the reconstruction of Louisi-
ana. The resulting military occupation commenced that contraction of
the Confederacy which became the dominant theme of the experiment
in rebellion, leading to military emancipation and Appomattox. Lou-
isiana was not, as McCrary suggests, merely "Mr. Lincoln's [reconstruc-
tion] model." The state generated alternative models affecting race,
Reconstruction, and civil leadership over the military, against which
White House and Capitol Hill inhabitants reacted happily or nega-
tively. McCrary's perception is correct that the Union effort, largely
developed in the field not in Washington, was innovative and imagina-
tive. He is also correct that Union policy makers' dedication to the re-
juvenation of state and local government, laws, and policies, fatefully
limited the changes that the national presence might initiate, especially
in race equality matters, as distinguished from irreversible emancipa-
tion, that greatest leap forward. The employment in Louisiana by
Lincoln's orders, of state constitutional conventions (pp. io3-10o5, esp.
fn. 73) foreshadowed every national effort to follow, including the 1864
Wade-Davis bill, Johnson's 1865-1866 executive orders, and the 1867
Military Reconstruction laws and their amendments.
I take added comfort from McCrary's additional agreement with me
Here’s what’s next.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 83, July 1979 - April, 1980, periodical, 1979/1980; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101207/m1/115/: accessed June 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.