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Huger William Johnstone was born on June 12, 1846, one of three children of William and Mary Blanch (Hardin) Johnstone. From May 1861 to January 1862, Johnstone served with the 5th Georgia Volunteers, C.S.A. at Pensacola, Florida, rising to the rank of Colonel. He first encountered U.S. Major Israel Vogdes during the Battle of Santa Rosa Island in July of 1861. Twenty years later, during a second meeting between the former enemies, Vogdes told Johnstone that he had secretly reinforced Fort Pickens before Fort Sumter was attacked, but that this act of war had been overshadowed by the excitement of the Sumter affair. Intrigued by this information, Johnstone began to scour the official records compiled by the U.S. Government and uncovered how Abraham Lincoln and his co-conspirators used deceit and violated international law in order to instigate war in early 1861, while laying the blame on the South. Writing in 1917, Johnstone had access to documentation which was not available when other post-war Confederates, such as Jefferson Davis and Alexander H. Stephens, wrote their own histories of the conflict.
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