As the Civil War surrounded our nation in the 1860s, residents of Montgomery County lived in a war zone. Union and Confederate soldiers passed regularly through the area, small bands of troops led raids, and young men went off to battle on both sides of the fight.
Spies and smugglers made trusting your neighbor impossible, essential goods became more limited, and cannon fire heard from across the river created tension throughout the land. In the midst of this, martial law was forced throughout Maryland. This military rule meant checkpoints, curfews, passes for travel to certain places, seemingly random citizen arrests, and the seizure of property.
At the Alabama State Capitol building, you can see the precise spot where Jefferson Davis took the oath to become its first president. His “white house” can also be toured, and these two sites make quite the comparison from the Civil Rights landmarks that are also located in the city.