Were Swords Used in Antebellum Duels?

During a discussion earlier this semester, a student asked what other weapons besides pistols were used in duels. I mentioned swords as an alternative, but the class didn't seem to find them a believable option. In researching an anecdote about the Eaton affair today, I came across this piece of news in the 2 July …

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Suicide in the Early Republic

I recently started catching up on my academic journal reading. Two articles in different journals addressed aspects of suicide that I found interesting. I'll try to do justice to them in summarizing the arguments made by the authors. Richard Bell's "The Double Guilt of Dueling: The Stain of Suicide in Anti-Dueling Rhetoric in the Early Republic" …

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Charles Dickinson’s Reinterment

I had the pleasure of attending Charles Dickinson's reinterment in late June. Dickinson was the young lawyer who was killed in a duel with Andrew Jackson in 1806. The story of how Dickinson's grave was discovered is a testament to hard work and persistence, by both Charles Miller, Dickinson's great-great-great-grandson, and Fletch Coke, a well-known historic preservationist in Nashville. Most people who …

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