Sunday, December 18, 2005

Edge Of Dixie

Greetings from Louisville, Kentucky, on the Ohio River, which is also the Kentucky-Indiana border. Louisville is the home of Colonel Sanders (pictured left, whose museum I may or may not see this morning) and the Kentucky Derby. I've driven nearly 1,000 miles so far, and I suspect I'll drive far more than the 2,457 mile direct distance from New York to Phoenix. Even if there was a perfect diagonal (there isn't) or I always drove the absolute most direct way (I make small divergences), just stopping for food and gas and hotel would easily add a couple hundred miles if you add it up over a week. I suspect my odometer will pass the 3,000 mark as I approach my family's doorstep.

In the Civil War, Kentucky is one of three states that didn't secede, and fought on the Union side, but also had legal slavery. The others were Maryland and Delaware. That's why Lincoln was careful, in his 1863 Emancipation Proclamation, to liberate only the slaves in the Confederacy. Since there was plenty of anti-Union sentiment in Maryland and Delaware already, Lincoln didn't want to tip the balance and be surrounded by enemies - that's also why he waited until the war's third year to emancipate. His hope was that slaves in Southern territory would rise up against their masters, hastening a Union victory. Didn't happen...

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