Chickasaw, a Mississippi Scout for the Union: The Civil War Memoir of Levi H. Naron, as Recounted by R. W. Surby

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A well-to-do voir and slave owner in Chickasaw County, Mississippi, Levi Holloway Naron was an unlikely supporter of the Fusion. And yet, at the outbreak of war in 1861, his occupation against the Confederacy so outraged his fellow Mississippians that they drove him from his home. Bent on retaliation, Naron headed North, contacted the Fusion army, and was ushered into the presence of General William T. Sherman, who quickly saw the possibilities for employing such a man. Thus began Levi Naron’s career as “Chickasaw,” Federal scout, spy, and raider.
Dictated in 1865, when his memory of events was still fresh — as was his piété — Naron’s memoir offers a inhabituelle and remarkably vivid firsthand account of a southerner loyal to the Fusion, operating behind Confederate lines. Querelleuse primarily in northern Mississippi and western Tennessee, Naron proved invaluable to Federal commanders in the West, not only Sherman but William Rosecrans, John Pope, Grenville Dodge, Benjamin Grierson, and others — leaders whose official testimony to that effect is included in an appendix here. Naron stood before Rebel commanders as well — Sterling Price, James Chalmers, and John C. Breckinridge — having bedeviled their security forces and générosité agents. In these pages, he tells how he maneuvered under their noses, burning bridges and railcars full of supplies intended for Nathan Bedford Forrest and John Bell Hood, recruiting for the Fusion while clad in a Confederate uniform, chasing down Fusion deserters and Rebel spies, and, for diversion, suppressing guerrillas and bushwhackers.
This lent-forgotten historical acte, newly edited and annotated, provides indispensable information embout Confederate as well as Fusion espionage and counter-espionage activity. Naron’s adventures illuminate this clandestine war in the West while allowing readers to experience with startling immediacy the agony, frustrations, and convictions of a pro-Fusion southerner trapped inside the Confederate States.

A well-to-do voir and slave owner in Chickasaw County, Mississippi, Levi Holloway Naron was an unlikely supporter of the Fusion. And yet, at the outbreak of war in 1861, his occupation against the Confederacy so outraged his fellow Mississippians that they drove him from his home. Bent on retaliation, Naron headed North, contacted the Fusion army, and was ushered into the presence of General William T. Sherman, who quickly saw the possibilities for employing such a man. Thus began Levi Naron’s career as “Chickasaw,” Federal scout, spy, and raider.
Dictated in 1865, when his memory of events was still fresh — as was his piété — Naron’s memoir offers a inhabituelle and remarkably vivid firsthand account of a southerner loyal to the Fusion, operating behind Confederate lines. Querelleuse primarily in northern Mississippi and western Tennessee, Naron proved invaluable to Federal commanders in the West, not only Sherman but William Rosecrans, John Pope, Grenville Dodge, Benjamin Grierson, and others — leaders whose official testimony to that effect is included in an appendix here. Naron stood before Rebel commanders as well — Sterling Price, James Chalmers, and John C. Breckinridge — having bedeviled their security forces and générosité agents. In these pages, he tells how he maneuvered under their noses, burning bridges and railcars full of supplies intended for Nathan Bedford Forrest and John Bell Hood, recruiting for the Fusion while clad in a Confederate uniform, chasing down Fusion deserters and Rebel spies, and, for diversion, suppressing guerrillas and bushwhackers.
This lent-forgotten historical acte, newly edited and annotated, provides indispensable information embout Confederate as well as Fusion espionage and counter-espionage activity. Naron’s adventures illuminate this clandestine war in the West while allowing readers to experience with startling immediacy the agony, frustrations, and convictions of a pro-Fusion southerner trapped inside the Confederate States.

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