America's Civil War
Forced to the Cannon’s Mouth’: An Ohio Regiment’s Desperate Venture From Perryville to the War’s End
John Marshall Branum knew about abolition and slavery in the South from an early age. His parents were both Swedenborgian, members of a Christian sect founded in the 18th century that followed the teachings of Emanuel Swedenborg, a theologian and philosopher known for his praise of the spiritual character of the African people. When the Civil War began, the 21-year-old Branum was enrolled at the Hopedale Normal School, a teachers’ college near his hometown of Bridgeport, Ohio. The school, which counted future Union icon George Armstrong Custer among its alumni, had been established by New England abolitionists in 1849.