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  • Description is exactly "An August 26, 1868 Florence, AL Literary Index newspaper article regarding the aim on the part of a group of Florence freedmen to found a "Seymour and Blair political club."

    Former New York Governor Horatio Seymour (1810-1886) and Francis Preston Blair, Jr. (1821-1875) were the Democratic nominees for US president and vice-president in the 1868 elections, losing out to Republican nominee and former Union Army General Gen. Ulysses S. Grant (1869-1877).

    Until FDR's New Deal in the 1930s courted away the black vote, most blacks voted Republican, as it was the party of Lincoln and emancipation however in Florence-Lauderdale perhaps 15-20% of black voters voted Democrat.

    The article uses the formation of this club as political propaganda and insists that it is proof that at least some local blacks were growing tired of "loyal leagues" (Union Leagues) patriotic clubs which were formed by the Republican Party in the North in 1863 to bolster pro-Union loyalty and which moved down South after the war. The leagues often met at night in secret (for fear of the Klan or other white harassment) to discuss politics and recommend candidates for office. One such Union League met at the Pisgah ME Church 10 miles north of Florence near Rawhide (since 1889 Cloverdale ) in March of 1867."
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