The reporter for the Times of London landed in the United States in March of 1861, met Lincoln, Seward and other dignitaries in Washington, then proceeded to South Carolina, just missing the bombardment of Sumter, before touring much of the rest of the new Confederacy.
On this site we will be excerpting passages from Bunch's letters and from Russell's private journals and his book My Diary North & South up through his famous report on the Battle of Bull Run, or First Manassas, on July 21, 1861, and on through the summer.
Our Man in Charleston: Britain's Secret Agent in the Civil War South will be published July 21, 2015.
In late May, after meeting Jefferson Davis in the makeshift Confederate capital of Montgomery, Alabama, and taking a riverboat to Mobile where he encountered the last man known to have imported African slaves to the United States, Russell arrived in New Orleans.
May 27th. I visited several of the local companies, their drill-grounds and parades; but few of the men were present, as nearly all are under orders to proceed to the camp at Tangipao or to march to Richmond. Privates and officers are busy in the sweltering streets purchasing necessaries for their journey. As one looks at the resolute, quick, angry faces around him, and hears but the single theme, he must feel the South will never yield to the North, unless as a nation which is beaten beneath the feet of a victorious enemy.