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Diane Publishing Books
Pulling the Temple Down: The Fire-Eaters & the Destruction of the Union
David S. Heidler (au). In Dec. 1860, when the secessionists of South Carolina voted to take their state out of the Union, one proclaimed, “We have pulled a temple down.” One set of men who received the most credit for this achievement called themselves “fire-eaters.” They included, among others, William L. Yancy of AL, Robert B. Rhett, Sr., of SC & John Quitman of MS. This is the first comprehensive study of the fire-eaters, exploring who they were, how they operated, their efforts to lead public opinion, their successes, & their failures. For the first time a historian has used intensive research in the papers of these men to examine their claim that they fathered secession.
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