In late 1864, Capt. Green's military service abruptly ended with arrest and confinement after he and Lt. McCullough filed charges against officers, including, Capt. J. W. Childs, during whose command Green charged occurred "gross corruption and mock marriages were celebrated, gambling encouraged, beef cattel driven in and sold for the benefit of the officers, the Refugees deprived of their rations, and supplied with unwholesome flour"; the quarter master of the post Capt. Ames "kept a harlot in the commissary, sold hides for his own benefit and shared in the fraud of the Ration Department;" the surgeon of the post Dr. Carroll "neglected the Refugee families in their sickness nor allow other doctors to attend them."(17)
Capt. Green and Lt. McCullough were placed under arrest; the former for fifty days, the latter forty days. After agreeing to a compromise, Lt. McCullough was released and returned to command. After a board hearing failed to resolve Green's case, General Newton (who had succeeded General Woodbury), after he learned that Green had only a provisional commission and had never been mustered, ordered the revocation of Green's commission, which was done. General Newton further ordered that Capt. Doyle of the 110th New York Regt. relieve Capt. Childs of the command of Fort Myers and gave him instructions to arrange a compromise between Green and Childs, but Green, wanting an official investigation, refused.(18)
On February 15, 1865, the Condederates, led by Major William Footman, attacked Fort Myers, but were repulsed. Capt. Doyle reported: "Mr. J. D. Green, formerly connected with the Second Florida Cavalry, took his rifle and went into the ranks, and from his actions I have every reason to believe him to be a loyal man.(19)
At Cedar Keys on April 15, 1865, he appealed to the President and the Secretary of War. In June 1865, statements were secured from five officers in answer to Capt. Green's appeal for redress of grievances. Capt. Crane, one of the five, charged that Green was a disloyal man and a traitor, with all representing Green to be a man of bad character. Nevertheless, Capt. Green was successful for on March 27, 1866 and March 13, 1872 the War Department approved his service as 1st Lieutenant, Company B, 2d Florida Cavalry to date May 1 to 26, 1864, and as Captain, Company B, May 26, 1864 to February 3, 1865 and March 26, 1865 to April 12, 1865.(20)
Following the Civil War, Capt. Green, now a member of the Republican Party, became a powerful political leader in Manatee County, with his influence reaching into surrounding counties, Tallahassee, and even Washington, D. C.
James D. Green represented Manatee County in the October 1865 state constitutional convention and in the State Assembly (House of Representatives) in the sessions of 1865 (he resigned in the summer of 1866 and was succeeded in October by his brother-in-law John W. Whidden, a former Confederate officer), 1868, 1869, and 1870. From Pine Level, to which he had moved and in 1866 had helped to make the county seat, the Unionist Green exercised a powerful sway in South Florida by recommending county office holders to the governor, who, under the constitution, held the power of appointment. He was further an agent of the Freedmen's Bureau.(21)
On November 3, 1868, the Legislature met in convention at Tallahasee to appoint the presidential electors, given to Ulysses S. Grant. Representative Green was named as the messenger to carry the results to Washington, D. C.(22)
Geen's most radical act while serving as Manatee's Representative was his efforts to impeach Governor Harrison Reed. In the special legislative session in November 1868 H. S. Harmon (black), James D. Green, and Marcellus L. Stearns were appointed a committee to prepare and report articles of impeachment against the governor. The ensuing resolution was reported to the Senate as though the governor had been impeached, and Lt. Governor William H. Gleason, an opponent of the governor, opportunistical- ly interpreted it to mean he was governor. Governor Reed, however, outmaneuvered his enemies and successfully had Gleason removed from office as he had not been a citizen of the state for two years as required by the constitution.(23)
On January 21, 1870, Representative Green introduced a resolution authorizing a committee of five to be appointed to inquire in to the acts and doing of Governor Reed. The resolution was adopted and Green, George P. Raney, John Simpson, H. H. Forward, and William B. White were appointed the committee by Marcellus L. Stearns Speaker of the Assembly. On February 4, 1870, with White dissenting, the committee, of which Green was chairman, recommended Governor Reed be impeached, the charges mainly being allegations of personal and public financial irregularities.(24)
The Assembly, however, rejected Green's report by a 29-21 vote and adopted the minority report against impeachment by a vote of 27-22. After the investigation closed, Green called at the executive office and informed the governor of the report in his favor. Governor Reed and Green, afterwards, reached a mutually advantageous political truce. (25)
On July 11, 1870 at Pine Level, Green was nominated as an Independent candidate for state senator to succeed Henry A. Crane, his former commander. After he, in August, supported the candidacy of black state senator Josiah Walls of Alachua County for Congress, the conservative backlash doomed Green at the polls in November. Via appointment, he served in other offices, e.g., as a federal deputy marshal, county commissioner, county sheriff, and postmaster of Pine Level.(26)
When John F. Bartholf, the Republican clerk of court of Manatee County, submitted his resignation in late August 1876, Capt. Green in his swan song proposed to his friend, Republican Governor Marcellus L. Stearns, also the party's nominee for governor, that his 24-year-old son Andrew Green be appointed clerk. Named clerk in October, Andrew, acting in accord with his father's directives, refused to post bond for the issuance of his commission, leaving no legal clerk for elections in November, which the Democrats were favored to win handily. Manatee Democratic leaders proceeded anyway with the November 7 election, sweeping the county with 288 votes for Samuel J. Tilden for president and 289 votes for George F. Drew for governor. Green, seeing the handwriting on the wall, had urged Republicans to boycott the election, and only 26 voted for Republican presidential candidate Rutherford B. Hayes and Florida gubernatorial nominee Marcellus L. Stearns. Initially, Governor Stearns, by a 400-majority that excluded Manatee as the election was invalidated was declared to have carried Florida, as well as, Hayes by more than 900. Democrats, however, appealed, and, after much legal maneuvering, the Manatee votes (with other contested) were counted for Drew, but were excluded for Tilden, which gave Florida a split ticket of Republican Hayes for president and Democratic Drew for governor. Drew's margin of victory was only 195 votes. The brokered election of 1876 ended, not only Capt. Green and the Republicans' state influence, but more significantly, Reconstruction and the civil rights movement for nearly a century.(27)
Green continued to live in Pine Level where he farmed and continued to dabble in local affairs. In 1878, he startled the complacent Democrats when he attempted unsuccessfully to reclaim his old House seat. In his last hurrah in February 1880, he tried to revive the Republican Party with a mass meeting at Pine Level. In 1882, still arousing contention, signing himself as "Torpedo" and "Ex-Church Member," Green in articles to the Fort Ogden Herald alienated his fundamentalist neighbors when he, among other things, criticized a local minister, Rev. I. J. Sparkman. In 1885, he had a modest farm consisting of 70 acres, 1 horse, 2 oxen, and 615 cattle.(28)
Capt. James Dopson Green died April 8, 1886 and was buried in Pine Level Campground Cemetery.(29)
A newspaper reported:
"Capt. James D. Green died in Manatee County on April 8. The deceased will be remembered as one of the men of this State who did so much for the Republican party from the close of the war up to the overthrow of that party in 1876. No man ever offered greater resistance to the Democracy in this State than Capt. Green did in his section. It was through his advice that Stearns attempted to deprive the people of Manatee county of the right of suffrage in 1876. He succeeded in having the vote of this county rejected by the notorious state canvassing board, so as to give the electoral vote of Florida to Hayes, and to defeat George F. Drew for Governor. Aided by L. G. Daniels he succeeded in the former but failed in the latter undertaking. Neither of these staunch and vigorous partisans were afterwards rewarded by Hayes for their work, and neither ever afterwards exhibited much interest in the welfare of the 'grand old party.' Capt. Green was a native of Anderson county, S.C., and was born in October, 1823. He joined the Union army at Key West at the outbreak of the war, and was made a captain of infantry. He was seated as a Republican member of the Legislature from Manatee county in 1872. He was deputy collector of customs at one time for the port of Manatee. He leaves a wife, one son and five daughters." [Some details of the obituary are inaccurate.](30)
On August 9, 1890, Eliza Green of Pine Level under the Act of June 27, 1890 applied for a pension as the widow of James D. Green Capt., Co. B, 2nd Florida Cavalry. On April 5, 1895 George Mizell, 47 of Pine Level, gave an affidavit in Eliza's behalf, in which he stated:
"The widow at present resides on a small undivided estate valued on the tax rolls of the county at 430 dollars. In this she an interest of one-fifth (1/5). The personal property of said estate is valued at 800 dollars but in this she has no interest as shown by the administrator's record, having already overdrawn her interest in said personal property. All this property is assessed in the name of Jas. D. Green Est. The widow has nothing whatever in her own right and no person is bound for her support. Her income from all sources as spring 1894 was 80 dollars and 16 cents." Her claim was approved under certificate no. 468877, commencing on August 16, 1890 at $8 per month. Eliza W. Green died on August 8, 1903.(31)
Capt. and Mrs. Green had the following children:
1. George Green, born ca. 1850; died in 1860s.
2. Andrew Green, born March 25, 1852; died July 11, 1925, Miami, Fla.; married on May 22, 1877 Martha E. Mizell.
3. Hugh Green, born ca. 1855; died in 1870s.
4. Mary Elizabeth Green, born ca. 1857.
5. Helen Jane Green, born ca. 1859.
6. Leroy Green, born ca. 1860; died in 1870s.
7. Infant, born ca. 1862/63; died 1860s.
8. Karon Green, born ca. 1866; married on June 28, 1887 John W. Myers.
9. John Green, born ca. 1869; adopted.
10. Ada S. Green, born ca. 1870; married on April 10, 1888, W. H. Jenkins.
11. Kate Green, born ca. 1873.(32)
Census Records | Vital Records | Family Trees & Communities | Immigration Records | Military Records Directories & Member Lists | Family & Local Histories | Newspapers & Periodicals | Court, Land & Probate | Finding Aids