Elizabeth Van Lew: Confederate Abolitionist Turned Union Spy

Elizabeth Van Lew was a Richmond, Virginia abolitionist and philanthropist who built and operated an extensive spy ring for the Union Army during the American Civil War. Early Life Elizabeth Van Lew was born on October 12, 1818, in Richmond, Virginia to John Van Lew and Eliza Baker,[1] whose grandfather was Hilary Baker, mayor of Philadelphia from 1796 to[…]