Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts



First Advisor

Dr. Ted Tunnell


This thesis describes and analyses how the Richmond press operated as a propaganda machine during the final year of the Civil War. It argues that the newspapers of the Confederate capital regularly exploited the propaganda value of the news they reported, employing methods including distortion of facts and libelous personal attacks. They displayed a seemingly total disregard for veracity in their zeal to convince their readership that the cause was not lost, and created a false picture of the real situation to a population which was war-weary and desperate for reassurance that victory was still possible. Defeats were minimized and even the tiniest victory in the most insignificant skirmish was magnified. When the Northern army began its strategy of hard war, the Richmond press seized on that to help create a demonized portrait of the Yankee and the North.


© The Author

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission

June 2008

Included in

History Commons