Female Soldiers

An HMS American Cultures collaborative production
Malinda Blalock

In the American Civil War, many women disguised themselves as men to fight in the war. For example, five women were found dead on the field of Pickett's Charge after the battle. But, all of them had different reasons for their disguises. Malinda Blalock and Florena Budwin both joined the army because they could not handle the separation from their husbands. On the other hand, Frances Clalin joined because of her love and devotion of the Northern views. A large portion of the women who did fight in the Civil War did so because they felt that working on farms or factories was not enough of a contribution to their country. They felt that helping to fight in the war would make their life in America more useful and purposeful. Being a women soldier would take a lot of courage and bravery. They would live in fear of being found out every single day. Being in war alone is hard enough, but having to live with men and having the fear of the men finding out she was really a woman would be very emotionally draining. Overall, life as a female soldier was not as grand as it appeared to be. females would also be spies for either the confederate or the union, some examples of woman confederate soldiers were Belle Boyd, Antonia Forc, Rose O'Neal Greenhow, Nancy Hart, Laura Radcliffe,and Loretta Janeta Velazq
There was a female soldier in the Pennsylvania Cavalry, who was discharged after she was discovered to be female. There were five female soldiers, disguised as men, found at Gettysburg, among the dead at Pickett's charge.

Here is a youtube video about female soldiers: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u-JjZi2bigk&feature=related

Online Sources:
"Female Wartime Cross dressers in the American Civil War." Wikipedia. 22 May 2009: <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Female_wartime_crossdressers_in_the_American_Civil_War>.

Lewis, Jone Johnson. "Female Spies of the Confederacy - Confederate Women Spies." Women's History - Comprehensive Women's History Research Guide. Web. 26 May 2010. http://womenshistory.about.com/od/civilwar/a/women_spies_con.htm.

"Women Were There." Women in the Civil War. 26 May 2010: http://userpages.aug.com/captbarb/femvets2.html

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