Civil War Charlotte: Last Capital of the Confederacy
Though always an important North Carolina city, Charlotte truly helped to make history during the Civil War. The city's factories produced gunpowder, percussion caps, and medicine for the Confederate cause. Perhaps most importantly, Charlotte housed the Confederate Naval Works, manufacturing components such as propeller shafts, engine parts, and gun carriages for the Confederate navy. Charlotte and Mecklenburg County also sent more than three thousand men into Confederate service, and hosted a military hospital, a Ladies Aid Society, a prison, and even for a short amount of time, the treasury of the Confederate States of America. When Richmond fell in April 1865, Jefferson Davis made his way to Charlotte and set up the headquarters of the government there, making Charlotte the unofficial capital. It was in Charlotte that Davis actually surrendered, a surrender that was rejected. Following the war, the city survived Reconstruction, and was home to numerous veterans groups. In 1929, the United Confederate Veterans held their national reunion in the Queen City.