"Roundheads and Ramblings"
Welcome to Katzenhaus Books, where we tell - the stories behind the history.
RSS Follow Become a Fan

Delivered by FeedBurner


Recent Posts

Why I'm Being an Absolute Sloth!
Lessons We Learn Too Late
Christmas Without . . .
Another Thankful Morning--This Time for Alert Cats.
Connections

Categories

A new contest
Abolition
absurdity
academic myopia
Agents
Almost Free
Amazon
ancestors
Announcement
apocalypse
Applications and software
Appomattox
Arnulf of Lisieux
art of speaking
attracting readers
audience
audio books
Author Central
Author Gifts
author's Plea
awards
baseball
basketball
Battle of Port Royal
Battles
biographical
birthdays
blind artists
blockade
blog chain
Book Club Guides
Book Design
Book Launch
book stores
book trailer
bookstores
Boxed Set
bright ideas
Building a platform
business
Business plan
Busy-ness
Butterflies
Career choices
cats
celebrations
cemetery research
Census
challenges
chaos
characterization
Characters
Charleston
children
children's books
choosing a publisher
Choosing a Title
Christmas
Christmas Past
Civil War
Clues
commercials
Computer Hacks
Confederates
Conferences
Connections
constitutional amendments
construction
Contract labor
cotton
Countdown Sale
Countdown to Launch
Cover Designs
Cover images
CreateSpace
cutting and pasting
Cyber Monday
daily drama
daily events
Dead Mules
Deal of the Day
decisions
depression
diversions
dogs
Do-Overs
DRM
earthquake
e-book pricing
e-books
editing
elections
elevator speech
elmore leonard
Elves and Holidays
Emancipation
England
English class
evidence
Excerpt
exclusivity
Exercise
Expertise
Facebook
fact and fiction
failures
fame and fortune
family affairs
Favorites
Fear of Failure
fires
Fish
flood waters
flowers
food delights
Formatting
Fort Pulaski
free chapter
Free Days
freebies
Friendship
Frogmore
garden
gardens
genealogy
Getting organized
ghost stories
Giveaway
Goals
good business
good news
Goodreads
grammar cops
gratitude
gray horses
gripes
grocery shopping
guest blogs
Gullah
handicaps
hardbound books
Harriet Tubman
Hiatus
Historical background
Historical Fiction
historical puzzlers
historical thinking
history lessons
Holidays
home office
hope and kindness
horse races
horses
hurricanes
identifying your audience
illustrations
imagination
indie authors
Inspiration
inspirations
internet
internet history
intruders
ISBN
Kalamazoo
karma
Kindle
Kindle links
Kindle rankings
Kindle Serials
kings
Klout
Ku Klux Klan
Lack of co-ordination
landmarks
language
Laughs
launch dates
Laura Towne
Layouts
legal matters
lending library
Lessons Learned
lessons unlearned
libraries
literary genres
local news
loss
love story
making choices
Marketing
Matchbooks
medicine
medieval-isms
Meet the Characters
Memorial Day
memories
Milestones
military matters
mind-mapping
Misfis
Monthly Musings
name recognition
NaNoWriMo
Nellie Chase
Nellie M. Chase
New Blog
New Book
New England
New Research
New Year
newsletters
nonfiction
non-profits
nostalgia
Nurses
oddities
odds and ends
olympics
omens
opening lines
outrage
Oxford
Papacy
parties
Penn Center
photographs
photos
picture book
Pinterest
Pinterest and copyrights
Pirates
planning ahead
plot
point of view
polite society
politics
portraits
powerful women
Predictions
pre-orders
press release
previews
pricing
Principles
procrastination
productivity
Profiles
Progress Report
Promotions
proofs
pros and cons
publishing
publishing companies
publishing ploys
publishing rights
pure sentimentality
puzzlements
quiz
rain
random thoughts
RBOC
read an ebook
readership
Reading Enhancement
recipes
Reconstruction
Relaxation
research
Resolutions
reviews
road trip
rough draft
Roundhead Reports
royalties
rules
SALE
Sales
scams
schedules
Scoop It
ScoopIt
seasons
Secessionville
second edition
Second Mouse
self-publishing
settings
Shiloh
Short Stories
Silliness
slander
Slavery
small world
Smashwords
Smile of the Day
snow, living in the south
social media
software
software disasters
South Carolina
Speechless!
sports
Spring
story arc
Substitutes
Success
summer
Synopsis
Taking a Break
Taxes
Thank You
the difficulties of blogging
The Gideonites
Theme
Tongue-in-cheek
Traditions
trailer
Travelog
trilogies
Trivia, Nostalgia
trolls
Tweet
Twitter
Upcoming Events
using commas
Vacation
vacation photos
Valentine
video
Visitor
vocabulary
Volunteering
voting
warnings
weather
weather trauma
website
word counts
Word-of-Mouth
Words
Words of Warning
Writer Beware!
Writer's Block
Writing Advice
Writing as Career
writing process
X-Rays

Archives

March 2019
February 2019
December 2018
November 2018
October 2018
September 2018
August 2018
July 2018
May 2018
April 2018
March 2018
February 2018
January 2018
December 2017
November 2017
September 2017
August 2017
July 2017
June 2017
May 2017
April 2017
March 2017
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010

powered by

"Roundheads and Ramblings"

February 2015

Crossover Character; Robert Smalls


In 1862, a young slave named Robert Smalls managed to steal a Confederate gunboat and sail it past Ft. Sumter and turn it over to the Union fleet. Small’s actions meant much more than a grand nose-thumbing gesture at the Confederates.  Here was proof positive that the Negroes were clever, quick learners, full of initiative, capable of great heroism, and willing to fight for their own freedom.  Those opposed to slavery had been making that claim for years. Robert Smalls embodied their wildest dreams.

Abolitionists wasted no time in exploiting the advantage his cause had gained.  They hustled Robert Smalls onto the first ship that could be found headed north. He was taken to Washington, D. C. and into the office of Treasury Secretary Salmon P. Chase, where Smalls spent a hour regaling Chase with the story.  The Treasury Secretary was so impressed that he set in motion a resolution giving General Saxton permission to recruit Negroes into the United States Army, and, after  the Emancipation Proclamation on September 22nd, 1862, to create the First South Carolina Volunteers. This regiment would be the first to be manned almost entirely by former slaves, most of whom could neither read nor write, but who now stood ready to fight for their own country.

Robert Smalls, himself, followed up his triumph in a singularly middle-class sort of fashion.  He had been awarded a prize of $1500 for capturing the Planter and turning it over into Union hands.  He used the money to purchase the McKee House on Prince Street in Beaufort, where he had grown up as a slave.  He also opened a store on Bay Street and set himself up in business as a grocer. In time he became a United States Congressman.

 His actions would have pleased a man like Jonathan Grenville. If Jonathan was ever to become involved in politics, it would be in support of such a man.

Crossover Character: Laura Towne


Miss Laura M. Towne was a Unitarian, an Abolitionist, and a medical student.  In 1862, at the age of 37, she left her Philadelphia home to travel to the Sea Islands of South Carolina.  Her purpose: to do whatever she could to help the newly freed slaves become useful and productive citizens. The Road to Frogmore, published in 2012, tells the story of the first few years she spent in South Carolina during the Civil War.  During that time, she nursed a village full of abandoned slaves through a smallpox epidemic, fought tax collectors to defend the rights of a slave to purchase the land he had worked on all his life, fought with local preachers to defend the slaves' right to worship as they chose, and established a school to meet the needs of a population that had been denied access to education.

But what really set Laura Towne apart from all the other missionaries who came to St. Helena Island during the war was her tenacity. Most well-meaning teachers came for a while, suffered through a hot summer or two, and went home to find a good cause that did not ask so much of them.  Laura Towne came to meet a need -- and stayed for forty years. After the war, she was appointed to oversee the spread of Negro schools all through the Low Country of South Carolina. And it was from that position that she came to make an appearance in the story of Jonathan Grenville.

If Jonathan was ever to accomplish his own goal of teaching newly-freed slaves to understand and appreciate the history of their new country, he would need the approval and help of Miss Laura Towne. But those who fell under Miss Towne's spell would also find themselves pulled into whatever cause she happened to be espousing at any given moment.

Continuing Character: Eli Moreau

Eli Moreau's character combines the best of both his parents. From Sarah, he had learned to value and respect his blood tides to the Dubois family.  And like her, he felt tremendous loyalty to his white counterpart on the family tree.  He and Eddie Grenville had grown up together, always knowing they were second cousins. As little boys they were playmates. When their families moved to Aiken during the war, they were teenagers hanging out together in the barn to escape the grown-ups. And as adults they were natural partners in their plans to turn the Aiken property into a successful business venture.

But Eli was also his father's son. He felt both tremendous loyalty to, and responsibility for, his African-American roots. He was outspoken in his defense of those who were brutalized because of the color of their skin, and brooked no nonsense from those who treated him with disrespect. The period of Reconstruction could have been as dangerous for him as it was for his father, if it were not for the tempering influence of his mother. She cautioned him to hold himself above the fray, and for the most part, he did so. 

Eli will play an important role in "Yankee Reconstructed" when his loyalty to his white family comes into immediate conflict with his own racial identity.

As a side note, readers of "Damned Yankee" will remember that Eli had a younger sister named Rosie. She left the family at the end of the war to finish her education and then become a teacher on St. Helena Island. That effectively removed her from becoming involved in the events taking place in Charleston and Aiken during Reconstruction; thus the new book is not her story.

Continuing Character: Hector Moreau



Unlike his wife, who had always conflated and confused the ideas of family and slavery, Hector Moreau understood slavery all too well. And he also understood that Jonathan and Susan Grenville had no idea how evil slavery really was.

When Jonathan called himself his friend, Hector might say, "Yes, Massa," but he knew that a true friend would never deprive a man of his freedom. When Jonathan actually gave Hector his freedom, he refused to accept it, knowing that the rest of the world would always see him as a slave because of the color of his skin. And when the war was over and slavery was abolished, Hector understood that the real fight had only just begun. Among the steps he took to distance himself from the stigma of slavery, the first thing he did was change his name from Gresham (the name of a former owner) to Moreau (a French surname to commemorate his birthplace in the Caribbean.)

Hector Moreau was a man of principle, a man with great courage, a man with an abiding love for his fellow freedmen. He did whatever he knew was right, even if it put his own life -- and the lives of his family -- in danger. And danger was all around him during Reconstruction.




Continuing Character: Sarah Dubois Moreau

Herein lies a love story. Shortly after the Revolutionary War, Pierre Antoine Dubois moved to South Carolina from his family's cotton plantations in the Caribbean. He brought with him a wife named Clothilde Martin. Theirs was an arranged marriage, designed to give Clothilde's father a connection in the new United States. Clothilde was bad-tempered and discontented, and Pierre's interest in her dwindled. But in her entourage was a lovely mulatto slave named Ernestine, and Pierre was soon smitten by this exotic beauty.

Despite Clothilde's efforts to send Ernestine out into the cotton fields, Pierre protected her, and eventually had a son by her. Pierre loved and favored Thomas, admitting to all that that little black slave was his son.  Clothilde was furious and turned all her attention to her own son, Georg Louis Dubois.  Pierre, however, treated his two sons as equals and raised them together. 

When the two boys grew up, they each married and had a daughter. Georg was the father of Susan Grenville, while Thomas was the father of Sarah, Susan's slave from the time they were both children. No one in the family seemed to notice -- or find it odd -- that Susan and Sarah could be both first cousins  and also mistress and slave.

Sarah appeared in "Damned Yankee" as a slave still, married to a fellow slave, Hector Gresham, and as the mother of Rosie and Eli, also working for Susan and Jonathan as slaves. The two cousins have such tight bonds that Sarah struggles with the idea of ever being "free."  She cannot imagine her life without her relationship to Susan, and even after the war, she refers to her cousin as Miss Susan. The turmoil of Reconstruction threatens everything she knows about human relationships.