Chapter

The Confederate Sequestration Act

in The Limits of Sovereignty

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print February 2007 | ISBN: 9780226314822
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226314860 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226314860.003.0006
The Confederate Sequestration Act

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In 1861, the Confederate Congress passed the Sequestration Act, authorizing the seizure of Northern property in direct retaliation for the First Confiscation Act. In the South, there was near ideological consensus on the legal basis for seizing Union property. The United States was an enemy belligerent whose property was, at international law, subject to permanent confiscation during war. Through the resort to international law, the Confederacy was able not only to assert its sovereignty but also to craft a far more rigorous and effective act much more quickly than their Northern counterparts. The demands of personal loyalty, commerce, and patriotism were thrown into conflict with the demands of Confederate citizenship. After the Civil War, the Confederate confiscation program was completely dismantled. Soon after victory, the Union nullified almost all the public laws of the Confederacy, including sequestration.

Keywords: Congress; confiscation; Sequestration Act; Confederacy; Union; Civil War; sequestration; loyalty; sovereignty; citizenship

Chapter.  12544 words. 

Subjects: History of the Americas

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