Today in History: Trent Affair

Today in History–November 8–the Library of Congress features the Trent Affair, which was sparked on this day in 1861 when U.S. Navy Captain Charles Wilkes commanded the crew of the U.S.S. San Jacinto to intercept the British mail steamer Trent and arrest Confederate commissioners James M. Mason and John Slidell. Find out more about this international incident and Charles Wilkes by visiting the  Today in History section, then follow the links below to access more primary source picks and teaching ideas about the Trent Affair and the Civil War.

Correspondence & memorandum related to the Trent Affair

Books and reports related to the Trent Affair

Trent affair newspaper articles 1861-62 (Chronicling America Historical Newspaper collection)

Capture and release of Mason and Slidell”  The Galaxy, Volume 15, Issue 5, May 1873

I Don’t See It” Civil War sheet music 1862

The great surrender America surrenders the great commissioners – England surrenders her great pretensions – Jeff. Davis surrenders his great expectations

Civil War themed link sets (primary source collections & teaching resources)