The Lion and the Fox: Two Rival Spies and the Secret Plot To Build a Confederate Navy

Mariner: Houghton Harcourt. Dec. 2022. 288p. ISBN 9780358393252. $28.99. MILITARY HISTORY
Historian Rose (Washington’s Spies: The Story of America’s First Spy Ring) masterfully delivers an exciting tale of plots and schemes among the shipyards, docks, and government offices of Liverpool and London. At the onset of the American Civil War, the Southern states lacked a navy. The North blockaded southern ports, cutting off cotton to foreign markets. Confederate leaders dispatched James Bulloch (1823–1901) to England to raise a small fleet of commerce raiders. These ships wreaked havoc among Union shipping and drew needed warships away from the blockade effort, allowing southern merchants to ply their trade. Northern leaders were concerned that the Confederates would seek out assistance and recognition from European governments, especially those of France and Great Britain, where cotton was in high demand. So, the federal government sent a new consul, Thomas Haines Dudley (1819–93) to Liverpool, England, then a hotbed of Confederate sympathizers, to ferret out clandestine Southern activities. Dudley soon suspected that Bulloch and English sympathizers worked to raise funds and construct warships with the aid of middlemen and fictitious companies.
VERDICT Based on archival and primary research, this well-written account of intrigue will appeal to readers of Civil War history and real-life tales of spies and espionage.
Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing