Homeboy doesn't post for 2 weeks and y'all acting like he abandoned the timeline.

But in all seriousness, always love reading the updates. Been lurking for a while and I've actually been reading your work since Napoleon's World and the original Cinco De Mayo back on althistory wikia several years back (2016). Color me surprised to see you've been cooking over here for said several years.
Thank you so much! Some real throwbacks there haha, I’m much happier with the quality of my output these days
They’re on the alt history Wikia
 
Thank you so much! Some real throwbacks there haha, I’m much happier with the quality of my output these days

I more partial to the typical Alternate History style of updates with a writeup, but this style (releasing updates as if they're passages from books published ITTL) does a really good job pulling one into the world and the people that inhabit it.
 
A Freedom Bought With Blood: Emancipation and the Postwar Confederacy New
"...tensions between the Military Administration of Kentucky, commonly known as the MAK, and the Kentucky Commission, which by late 1919 was composed of civilians, overwhelmingly free Negroes. The Commission was simultaneously a legislature, a bureaucracy, and a judiciary; its forty-five members coordinated with local figures in Kentucky's western and central counties to keep order, formed committees that would act as the final adjudicator of disputes, and at least in theory wrote laws. But where the Commission's authority began and ended was left intentionally, in part because it had not been proscribed by the Treaty of Mount Vernon, and also because its real power existed only in the western half of the state, which had seen the massive influx of Negroes during and immediately after the war, while eastern Kentucky remained theoretically governed by the Military Administration, the State of Kentucky, and the Free Commonwealth simultaneously.

Theoretically was the key term, here, because there was nothing governed about the vast hollers and mountains east of Lexington. Clan-like families had lived in that backcountry for decades, often tracing their heritage back to settlers like Daniel Boone who came over the Cumberland Gap, and were fiercely defensive of their land and heritage; they were a strange folk who were Kentuckians first and Confederates second, who kept almost no slaves but nonetheless had been rigidly opposed to the invasion of their state by the Union during 1915 and now provided ample fodder for the NRO and hillboys. This in essence meant that since much of Kentucky was ungovernable by the MAK or the Commission, it was already cleaving the territory in two.

Amplifying issues was the personalism rapidly forming within the Free Commonwealth's Commission itself; by August 1919, the most powerful figure was Samson Browne, [1] a freedman nearly fifty years of age who had been manumitted as a boy in his owner's will and subsequently taught himself to read and come to be a powerful landowners in the vicinity of Louisville, before the war the city with the most freedmen in the whole of Kentucky. Browne and men like him were not just supporters and patrons of ONE, but also demanded a network of patronage and fealty across swaths of territory that rapidly came to be rural and semi-urban bossism; Browne controlled a territory around Louisville and to its immediate south, others held sway around Owensboro and Elizabethtown, while a cadre of influential Cincinnatians had extended themselves across the Ohio around Covington. The Commission's cadres of freedmen denied papers to go "over the river" became not just the makeshift civil servants who, it should be pointed out, did not in fact have much legal authority, but also the enforcers of these bosses' personalist fiefdoms throughout western and central Kentucky, and they became closely entwined with networks of illiterate freedmen still in shanty encampments, Union soldiers on both sides of the Ohio, and the Negro Leagues further south..."

- A Freedom Bought With Blood: Emancipation and the Postwar Confederacy

[1] Fictional
 
Partition of Kentucky?
Of course not, both sides agree it is one state. Administration set up in (checks Kentucky Map and picks a city) Pikeville is obviously temporary until all of Central and Western Kentucky is brought back under control of the Whites. (snark, but snark that is going to be true for 70 years) (See Otl phrasing about taiwan)

Largest city in 2020 in Eastern Kentucky is Ashland, but that is up on the Ohio, just downstream from the OH/WV/KY tripoint and even if the Confederates controlled it, I can't see them trying to run anything from it.

Leading to the question, does US control the Kentucky side of the river all the way between the Negro controlled area and West Virginia?
 
In terms of bringing Kentucky back into the Confederacy, I *guess* the Confederacy within the military limitations of the treaty of Mount Vernon *with* 1990s tech could conquer Kentucky if the Negros have 1920s tech, but I'm guessing as long as Kentucky can buy weaponry that is even 20 years out of date and get it to Louisville, they can always defend themselves. Hmm. Maybe for defense purposes, Kentucky is the first entity in this world to conceive of Nuclear Weapons.
 
In terms of bringing Kentucky back into the Confederacy, I *guess* the Confederacy within the military limitations of the treaty of Mount Vernon *with* 1990s tech could conquer Kentucky if the Negros have 1920s tech, but I'm guessing as long as Kentucky can buy weaponry that is even 20 years out of date and get it to Louisville, they can always defend themselves. Hmm. Maybe for defense purposes, Kentucky is the first entity in this world to conceive of Nuclear Weapons.

Well,remember that Kentucky is an illegal and unrecognised state, which is simply being propped up by the US administration (which is likely to evaporate once the Occupation of the Confederacy begins to wind down).

Furthermore, it's major metropolitan areas were bombed out by the war and have likely not come anywhere near recovering, and it has been thoroughly deindustrialized by the fighting as well as the fact that the Confederacy systematically dismantled the industrial infrastructure and moved it South when the front lines collapsed.

Politically we are already seeing that it is developing into Bossism and, indeed, personally al fiefs which are going to be relying on refugees to proper their position and rule. One expects that these bosses will have a difficult time working together and forming an effective civil government.

Meanwhile, the population is, as stated, either largely freedmen refugees (though there will be established communities thst predate the war - but whether they are any more tied down considering the near apocalyptic destruction of major cities, remains to be seen) or local white communities that are insular and will see any Freedmen government as inherently illegitimate.

The Freestate of Kentucky is going to resemble something out of Fallout once the US occupation ends.

No doubt the US will try to establish some workings of a civilian government when it pulls out - but this will be hampered by the fact that 1) bossism is becoming entrenched out of necessity and 2) Kentucky remains, under international law, a component state of the Confederacy. This is going to limit investment for recovery and also male it more difficult for a Free State militia to be formed.

The fact that the two major population groups in Kentucky absolutely loathe one another isn't going to help matters either. Raids, counter raids and strife are going to be common place and when those hit the international media ... it won't win the Free State many friends. There will likely be an effort in the African-American press to present a counter narrative, but I doubt it will take root until after the annexation (it is always easier to romanticise a state after it has collapsed, after all. Especially when stories of "Free Kentucky" will be valuable to the Confederate Civil Rights Movement)

Honestly, I suspect there will be insurgencies against the Confederacy from day one or Long's annexation. But a large part of the population (and even some of the Freedmen) will likely welcome him in as a restorer of order. And what resistance there is will be disorganised and likely as busy fighting one another as they are the Confederate military (at least at first).

And through it all, the US is going to have its hands tied: it cant exactly protest against a sovereign nation restoring order to one of its own - internationally recognised- provinces.

Really, the fact that the US failed to even mention Kentucky in the final Treaty is going to be seen as one of the greatest blunders of the war.
 
Of course not, both sides agree it is one state. Administration set up in (checks Kentucky Map and picks a city) Pikeville is obviously temporary until all of Central and Western Kentucky is brought back under control of the Whites. (snark, but snark that is going to be true for 70 years) (See Otl phrasing about taiwan)

Largest city in 2020 in Eastern Kentucky is Ashland, but that is up on the Ohio, just downstream from the OH/WV/KY tripoint and even if the Confederates controlled it, I can't see them trying to run anything from it.
Even if we never see a de jure partition of Kentucky iTTL, I expect there will be plenty of ATL alt-history that features exactly that.

- US state of West Kentucky (Kentucky-Owensboro)
- Confederate state of East Kentucky (Kentucky-Pikeville, sure)
- Kentucky Free Commonwealth* stuck in the middle, thoroughly Finlandized and full of spies to the extent that it's not impenetrably corrupt.


*Yes, yes I did.

Leading to the question, does US control the Kentucky side of the river all the way between the Negro controlled area and West Virginia?
'Control' is probably a strong term. Certainly they control the river itself, but I would be a bit surprised if they control any part of the river bank that isn't within range of the patrol boats' artillery at any given moment.
 
An inevitability. The current Kentuckian setup is obviously untenable, and annexation of the full territory by either the US or CSA is not going to happen for reasons that should be fairly obvious. The only real questions in my mind are the timing of when the partition becomes official and how bad things will get in the interim.

I disagree - I think a partition is almost impossible based on what we're seeing.

First, the United States has absolutely no legal claim on the territory at all. It would be different if they'd made some effort in the Treaty of Mount Vernon, but they did not.

Secondly, the movement to restore order under Long is almost certainly going to be pitched to the public as a symbolic moment to prove that the Confederacy had gotten its house back in order. The entire message of that moment is undercut if he then turns around and bargains away Western Kentucky to a hated foreign power which, once again, has no legal claim to the territory.

Third, people are assuming that the United States is going to want to annex Western Kentucky. Yes, there are strategic reasons for wanting to do so. But there are numerous factors that would also make the US want to wash their hands of the territory all together. 1) the liklihood of Kentucky being seen as anything but a failed state are pretty minimal. The US just a decade or more earlier engaged in a long occupation - including Kentucky - and it was a smashing disaster. Their stomach for similar situations is going to gone for at least a generation. 2) as much as we hate to admit it, this United States is still fairly racist. Yes, they felt a humanitarian desire in the immediate aftermath of the war to allow Freedmen is as immigrants. But that is another matter than annexing a territory which in all liklihood is freedmen-majority. 3) Kentucky is a wasteland at this point, a deindustrialized territory populated largely be refugees who are struggling to root themselves to the land. It will be exceedingly poor and in all liklihood would need yesrs of federal investment to make it anything else. 4) as long as the US has west Kentucky, they are always going to have further strife and tensions with the Confederacy. WE know there isn't going to be a third war, but that is in no way certain to the people on the ground. And even if the US could conceivably be assured of winning such a war, it would be a waste of blood and treasure that Philly is not going to want to pay if they can help it. And, meanwhile, Richmond can NOT let such a slight go unanswered either - by the point the reanimation has occurred, they will have finally pulled the sleeves out of the pit and are rebuilding their legitimacy on the domestic AND the international stage. The hated Yankees annexing Western Kentucky would cause that all to come crashing down.

I think the belief that the annexation of Western Kentucky is inevitable comes from a strong desire to see the Freedmen succeed somewhere. This is admirable and I share thatsame desire. But it really doesn't fit what we've seen of this United States and what we can project forward of its behavior during the 20s and 30s.

I think there is also an urge to view this situation as a scenario from a Paradox game. In those games, you want a territory, you manufacture a claim, plan for the war an execute it. If an army gets lost, so what, just build another. But that is most certainly not how these situations play out in real life or, in this case, alternative histories. That's not a slam sgainst such games- I adore them. But they aren't always the most realistic either
.
 
I disagree - I think a partition is almost impossible based on what we're seeing.
The partition wouldn't be between the US and the CSA, but rather between an independent internationally recognized black-majority West - with its security and territorial integrity guaranteed by the US - and a re-annexed Confederate East.

You did a good job laying out the reasons why the US would never annex Western Kentucky, but completely ignored why a Confederate annexation of the same region is a complete non-starter. The US would have very strong reasons, relating to both national security and national pride/morality, to oppose a unilateral annexation. The black population would obviously be entirely opposed - it would mean war and an extremely hostile occupation in the best case scenario. At the same time the Confederacy would be in absolutely no position to credibly threaten war to have its way. 1930s Germany this is not.

With all that, partition ends up being pretty much the only realistic way forward.
 
The partition wouldn't be between the US and the CSA, but rather between an independent internationally recognized black-majority West - with its security and territorial integrity guaranteed by the US - and a re-annexed Confederate East.

You did a good job laying out the reasons why the US would never annex Western Kentucky, but completely ignored why a Confederate annexation of the same region is a complete non-starter. The US would have very strong reasons, relating to both national security and national pride/morality, to oppose a unilateral annexation. The black population would obviously be entirely opposed - it would mean war and an extremely hostile occupation in the best case scenario. At the same time the Confederacy would be in absolutely no position to credibly threaten war to have its way. 1930s Germany this is not.

With all that, partition ends up being pretty much the only realistic way forward.

All good points! If I were to counter them, though, I'd point it that for Dixiefried Apartheid to really take off and work, Western Kentucky cannot be free. Or, if it is, than its citizens need to be actually worse off than the Freedmen living in the Confederacy.

Having a free, and stable, Freedmen Republic situated right next door to the Confederacy would be an existential threat to the Confederate society. Kentucky would be a constant drain on the CSA's resources as Freedmen would flee there, and there would also be the very real problem of weapons and personel co tonally filtering across the border and finding themselves in the hands of Black rebel groups in the Confederacy proper.

When looked at like that - a long insurgency actually doesn't seem like the worst situation from Richmond's point of view.

Though it's been hinted a bit that Long's policies aren't going to be catastrophic towards the Confederate black population and he might even be considered a Liberal on racial issues. Taking this further, depending just how bad Kentucky turns over the next decade or two ... there's at least a chance that some percentage of the western Kentucky population finds Long's "Racist by stable" regime to be preferable to the anarchy and neo-feudalism which arises in the Freestate. I'm not saying that that is where our author is going, and it's a particularly bleak option, but it's also in the cards.
 
All good points! If I were to counter them, though, I'd point it that for Dixiefried Apartheid to really take off and work, Western Kentucky cannot be free. Or, if it is, than its citizens need to be actually worse off than the Freedmen living in the Confederacy.

Having a free, and stable, Freedmen Republic situated right next door to the Confederacy would be an existential threat to the Confederate society. Kentucky would be a constant drain on the CSA's resources as Freedmen would flee there, and there would also be the very real problem of weapons and personel co tonally filtering across the border and finding themselves in the hands of Black rebel groups in the Confederacy proper.

When looked at like that - a long insurgency actually doesn't seem like the worst situation from Richmond's point of view.

Though it's been hinted a bit that Long's policies aren't going to be catastrophic towards the Confederate black population and he might even be considered a Liberal on racial issues. Taking this further, depending just how bad Kentucky turns over the next decade or two ... there's at least a chance that some percentage of the western Kentucky population finds Long's "Racist by stable" regime to be preferable to the anarchy and neo-feudalism which arises in the Freestate. I'm not saying that that is where our author is going, and it's a particularly bleak option, but it's also in the cards.

The best comparison that I can make is Northern Ireland if the UK had lost WWI and had the type of limitations on its military that Germany did iOtl, (and then multiply that 20 fold)
 
IIRC, didn't KingSweden say something about wanting a even 36 states in the modern day? It was part of what fueled the speculation about Baja annexation before deciding against it. When that was dropped, I assumed that at some point (note that some point could be many decades later) western Kentucky would be that 36th state, unless another is appearing somewhere.
 
Utah would be the 36th state.
I'm still wondering what Otl NM & AZ look like. there are *geological* reasons to split the area into two states more or less on the otl border. Also, where there be any problem with there being a Mexican Arizona Department along with a State of Arizona?

I'm curious as to how the abbreviations of Canadian Provinces/US States/CS States and Mexican Departments work. With the number of Departments in Mexico being larger than the number of states, I expect that trying to get two letter abbreviations don't conflict will be even tougher than Otl... (US California, US Colorado, MX California, MX Campeche, MX Chiapas, MX Chihuahua, MX Coahuila, MX Coalcomán, MX Colima)

Also, does Alaska get AL ittl since Alabama won't get a vote? :)
 
All good points! If I were to counter them, though, I'd point it that for Dixiefried Apartheid to really take off and work, Western Kentucky cannot be free. Or, if it is, than its citizens need to be actually worse off than the Freedmen living in the Confederacy.

Having a free, and stable, Freedmen Republic situated right next door to the Confederacy would be an existential threat to the Confederate society.
Kentucky would likely be very poor and unstable for many many years after the war due to the nature of its founding, as we're starting to see in the most recent update. I think the US's African-American community, which has been shown to be fairly wealthy and politically well-connected, would represent a far larger ideological threat to Confederate White Supremacy, and there's obviously nothing the Confederacy can do about that.
Kentucky would be a constant drain on the CSA's resources as Freedmen would flee there, and there would also be the very real problem of weapons and personel co tonally filtering across the border and finding themselves in the hands of Black rebel groups in the Confederacy proper.
Again, when it comes to weapons and personnel, the US and its mountains of money would be a far larger headache for the Confederacy than Kentucky could ever hope to be. If anything, it would be a convenient place of exile for people who speak up just a little bit too loudly about the injustices they face.
When looked at like that - a long insurgency actually doesn't seem like the worst situation from Richmond's point of view.
Sure, but again, the most important POV here isn't Richmond's, it's Philadelphia's. They would consider that situation to be really bad - disastrous even - and would presumably not allow it to happen. They are the superpower here after all, and have the troops on the ground to impose their will. You're suggesting that the US will completely ignore both its strategic interests and its internal public opinion in order to completely capitulate to a far weaker power (that its populace hates) and I just don't see that as a realistic outcome.
 
Top