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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Silver Spring in Montgomery County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

The Blair Family and the Civil War

 
 
The Blair Family and the Civil War Marker image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, April 4, 2015
1. The Blair Family and the Civil War Marker
Inscription. In his declaration of war on April 15, 1861, President Lincoln made an urgent request:
“I appeal to all loyal citizens to favor, facilitate and aid said effort to maintain the honor, the integrity, and the existence of our National Union, and the perpetuity of popular government; and to redress wrongs already long enough endured.”
Every member of the Blair family earnestly answered this call to duty.

When President Lincoln filled his Cabinet positions, he appointed Montgomery Blair U.S. Postmaster General. Until his resignation in September 1864, Blair was responsible for ensuring that postal routes remained open in southern post offices still loyal to the Union, as well as facilitating the establishment of free city postal delivery, the adoption of a money order system, and the use of railway mail cars during the Civil War. His placement in the Cabinet was strategic, as Blair was instrumental in keeping Maryland in the Union.

Montgomery Blair, a West Point graduate, had hoped to serve as Secretary of War. Such a title might put him in closer contact with his younger brother, Missouri Congressman Frank Blair Jr., a Union General who actively participated in combat throughout the South, including Sherman's March to the Sea. For his efforts, General U.S. Grant said of Frank Blair,
The Blair Family and the Civil War Marker image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, April 4, 2015
2. The Blair Family and the Civil War Marker
There was no man braver than he, nor was there any who obeyed all orders of his superior in rank with more unquestioning alacrity.

Throughout his tenure as President, Lincoln relied on Francis P. Blair, Sr. as his “private counselor.” In an attempt to bring the rebellion to an end, “Father Blair” went on an authorized mission to Virginia, twice, to secure a peace treaty from Jefferson Davis. The results of these operations were less than successful: “Francis P. Blair, Sr., returned from Richmond, and brought with him precisely what sensible men expected — that is just nothing.” In his own words, Blair concurred — calling himself a total failure.

Only a few months after Blair Sr. returned, General Robert E. Lee would surrender in Appomattox and the war would conclude on April 9, 1865. The sweet taste of victory was short-lived as Lincoln was assassinated less than a week later. In her mourning, former First Lady Mary Todd Lincoln sought solace from Elizabeth Blair Lee and her family: “Remember me most truly, to your brother, Judge (Montgomery) Blair, and your dear father & mother & all friends.”
 
Erected 2015 by History In the Parks, Montgomery County.
 
Location.
Abraham Lincoln, 1864 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, April 4, 2015
3. Abraham Lincoln, 1864
Close-up of photo on marker
Library of Congress
38° 59.121′ N, 77° 1.452′ W. Marker is in Silver Spring, Maryland, in Montgomery County. Marker can be reached from Jesup Blair Drive east of Georgia Avenue (U.S. 29), on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. In Jesup Blair Park behind (east of) Jesup Blair House. Marker is at or near this postal address: 900 Jesup Blair Drive, Takoma Park MD 20912, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Blair Family and their Silver Spring Homes (here, next to this marker); Silver Spring Experienced by a Mother and Child, 1861-1865 (here, next to this marker); Jesup Blair House (within shouting distance of this marker); William L. Chaplin Arrested! (about 600 feet away, measured in a direct line); The Civil War in Silver Spring (about 700 feet away); Original Federal Boundary Stone NE 1 (approx. 0.2 miles away in District of Columbia); Living in Takoma Park (approx. mile away); The Metropolitan Branch and Takoma Park (approx. mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Silver Spring.
 
Categories. PoliticsWar, US Civil
 
Francis Preston Blair Sr., (1791–1876) and wife Eliza Gist, (1794–1877). image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, April 4, 2015
4. Francis Preston Blair Sr., (1791–1876) and wife Eliza Gist, (1794–1877).
Close-up of photo on marker
Blair House, U.S. Department of State
Son, Montgomery Blair, (1813–1883). image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, April 4, 2015
5. Son, Montgomery Blair, (1813–1883).
Close-up of photo on marker
Library of Congress
Daughter, Elizabeth Blair Lee, (1818‐1906). image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, April 4, 2015
6. Daughter, Elizabeth Blair Lee, (1818‐1906).
Close-up of Thomas Sully portrait on marker
Blair House, U.S. Department of State
Son, James Blair, (1819–1853). image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, April 4, 2015
7. Son, James Blair, (1819–1853).
Close-up of Thomas Sully portrait on marker
Blair House, U.S. Department of State
Son, Frank Blair, Jr. (1821-1875). image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, April 4, 2015
8. Son, Frank Blair, Jr. (1821-1875).
Close-up of portrait on marker
Blair House, U.S. Department of State
Montgomery Blair 1862 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, August 10, 2011
9. Montgomery Blair 1862
The Blair tomb in Rock Creek Cemetery contains the remains of Montgomery Blair, his Parents Francis Preston Blair and Eliza Violet Gist Blair; As well as his wife Mary Elizabeth Woodbury Blair and several other Blair Family members.
The Blair Family image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, August 10, 2011
10. The Blair Family
In Rock Creek Cemetery.
Montgomery Blair<br>Born May 10th 1813<br>Died July 27th 1883 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, August 10, 2011
11. Montgomery Blair
Born May 10th 1813
Died July 27th 1883
In the Blair Family Tomb in Rock Creek Cemetery.
Francis Preston Blair<br>Born April 12th 1792<br>Died October 18th 1876 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, August 10, 2011
12. Francis Preston Blair
Born April 12th 1792
Died October 18th 1876
In the Blair Family Tomb in Rock Creek Cemetery.
Eliza Violet Gist<br>Wife of Francis Preston Blair<br>Born November 10, 1794<br> Died July 5, 1877 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, August 10, 2011
13. Eliza Violet Gist
Wife of Francis Preston Blair
Born November 10, 1794
Died July 5, 1877
In the Blair Family Tomb in Rock Creek Cemetery.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on April 5, 2015, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. This page has been viewed 271 times since then and 59 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13. submitted on April 5, 2015, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.
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