November 25, 1864
New York City: Southern arsonists, under orders from the C.S. Secret Service, set fire to ten New York City hotels, Barnum’s museum, and a few theaters. Contrary to the Rebel agents’ wishes, the fires do not spread to the rest of the city, and none of the fires does very much damage, and are put out rather quickly. Among the targeted hotels are the Astor House, the Saint James, the Belmont, and the Metropolitan. But the incidents rouse up a tide of Northern paranoia about Confederate agents and what they might do. A man named R.C. Kennedy ends up being arrested for setting the fire at Barnum’s Museum, and is executed for the crime.