From the NY Times:
It was anything but civil. On Jan. 7, 1861, Mayor Fernando Wood exhorted New York’s Board of Aldermen to declare the city’s independence from Albany and from Washington — a bold stroke of self-preservation that he maintained “would have the whole and united support of the Southern States.”
Two years later, the federal government diverted Union troops fresh from the Gettysburg battlefield to quell bloody draft riots in Manhattan, a defensive military maneuver that might have allowed Robert E. Lee to escape and prolonged the war.
If that is all New Yorkers remember about the Civil War, it is no wonder that the State Legislature balked at authorizing an official sesquicentennial commemoration.
“The Union does not win the war without New York,” said Kenneth T. Jackson, a historian at Columbia University who edited the Encyclopedia of New York City.
Yet earlier this year, the State Senate failed even to authorize a sesquicentennial commission, much less appropriate any money to support commemorations, exhibitions, retrospectives or any other events around the state to mark the start of the Civil War 150 years ago.