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02.23.16 Marshall, John A., American Bastille: A History of the Illegal Arrests and Imprisonments of American Citizens in the Northern and Border States on Account of Their Political Opinions During the Late Civil War, published in 1871

Notes Concerning the Author

John A. Marshall is not to be confused with John James Marshall (1765-1835), the imminent Supreme Court Chief Justice, but there may be a family relationship between the author and the late Chief Justice.

Our Review 

This book contains the individual stories of prominent Northern Democrats who were arrested, tortured, imprisoned and sometimes murdered by agents of the Lincoln Regime.  None were ever formally charged with any crime.  The orders to arrest them usually came from members of Lincoln’s cabinet and were carried out by Union soldiers or US Marshals.   The ones who resisted arrest and demanded to see a warrant were brutally beaten and dragged out of their homes in front of family members.  Most would never know what “crime” they had committed.  Their treatment in prison was inhumane.  

This group included ministers, lawyers, doctors, and elected officials.  They were the best educated and most respectable citizens in their towns.  But they were all Democrats and were not in favor of Lincoln’s invasion of the seceded States.

The individual stories in this book are as sad and tragic as any that this reviewer has ever read.   A statement frequently made is that the United States of America under Lincoln was the worst police state on Earth.  Tyrants do not exist without the complicity of others.  Republicans were eager to sell out their neighbors just because they had differing views.   

Lincoln destroyed the Federal Constitution so thoroughly that it will never be recovered.  The parallels between what went on 150 years ago and what is going on today are scary.  If you care about liberty and this country, you have to read American Bastille.

Availability of this Book

American Bastille: A History of the Illegal Arrests and Imprisonments of American Citizens in the Northern and Border Sates on Account of Their Political Opinions During the Late Civil War was published in 1971, in two parts, by Thomas W. Hartley & Co. of Philadelphia.  Reprints are available from Kessinger Legacy Reprints.  The work can be read on-line at  For print copies we suggest Abebooks or Amazon.