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Rose O'Neal Greenhow Embroidery

1813 - 1864

Confederate spymaster Rose O’Neal Greenhow risked her family’s wealth, social position, and safety to spy for the South during the Civil War. A socialite in Washington, D.C., Rose moved in important political circles and cultivated friendships with presidents, senators, and high-ranking military officers.

Greenhow developed her own system of enciphering secret messages to send along her “Secret Line” via couriers who carried military and government secrets, passing them from Washington and Baltimore to the Confederacy. Even after she and her daughter were imprisoned, she continued her espionage. She once declared, "God gave me both a brain and a body, and I shall use them both..."

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