|The San Francisco Civil War Round Table Meeting
20th January 2011
|Guest Speaker Dr. Norman Tutorow
The meeting opened with the Pledge of Allegiance, led by Winchell Haywood.
Richard Hill introduced his daughter, Norman Tutorow introduced his friend Gary, newly arrived
from New York, and Steve Harrington introduced his friend, Harvey the rabbit.
President Doyle reported that the Sesquicentennial Essay
Contest had been publicized in all the San Francisco
schools in the first week of January.
Charlie Sweeny introduced copies of an American
History publication on Frederick Douglass. He also
passed around a sample of CW-era case shot, a nasty
piece of iron if ever I saw one.
Debbie Grace presented information on the Hunley event
planned for February 12th at Fort Mason. Details here.
Dr. Norman Tutorow kept the audience spell-bound, not only with the content of his presentation
but also by the knowledgeable, easy-going style with which he discoursed on a complex topic,
leavened with humor.
He explained how the Federal government had undertaken to pay the costs to the States of the
volunteers they raised to fight in the war. Many states, California included, raised detachments of
volunteers who served for three years. At the end of the war, the government was far from
forthcoming with the promised payments. Arguments in Congress dragged on until, by 1954 (!),
twenty-five states, including Texas, had been reimbursed, but not California. The sum now owed to
the state is variously estimated to be between thirty and eighty million dollars. Chances of California
recovering the money are slim to none.
A spirited discussion followed this extraordinary revelation and various possible recovery methods
The meeting adjourned at 9:00pm.