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Southern Heritage <br>News and Views

Monday, November 24, 2014

THE COUNTER-PRODUCTIVE VILLIFICATION OF THE CONFEDERACY


The News-Sentinel editorial of Nov. 17th entitled “Confederate flag in parade an insult to blacks , veterans”  is a prime example of the continuing uninformed campaign to demonize the Confederacy and all of its symbols and emblems.  In doing so, the writer is also, perhaps or perhaps not without thinking, insulting the estimated 70 million-plus of us who are descended from those who fought for the South in that tragic conflict. 

You do not speak for “blacks” or “veterans”. You speak for yourself.

These men were our ancestors.  Their pictures hang on our walls, their blood is in our veins.  President Dwight Eisenhower recognized the patriotism of the Confederate soldier when he ordered in May of 1958 that they be considered American veterans.  Their forefathers and their descendants have gallantly served our Nation in every war.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. understood that we could not share a future without fully understanding and accepting our shared past. When he dreamed of a future where “the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave-owners would dine together at the table of brotherhood”, he did not qualify that dream. He did not insist that we millions of Confederate descendants deny our ancestry or turn our back on the courage and sacrifice of our forebears.  He wanted quite the opposite of the kind of demagoguery that is now being practiced by those who would divide us with “political correctness.”

In America, slavery existed under the Dutch, Spanish, and French flags. It existed under the British flag for 157 years. It existed under the American flag for 85 years.
One need only read Lincoln’s first Inaugural Address to see the folly in your revisionist editorial. He said he would do nothing about slavery.

Your editorial is an example of what serious historians call “presentism”. Presentism is the mistake of assuming that the ethics of another era can be judged by current ethical standards. It is not that way, nor has it ever been.

And to demean the St. Andrews Battle Flag, a Christian Cross, is to desecrate it in much the same way as those pitiful racists who also wave the American flag and run around in bed-sheets.

For what it is worth, I worked for years on a television show called “The Dukes of Hazzard”. Every week for years, 30 to 40 million Americans of all regions, races, and heritages watched the “General Lee” race around in a place where there was no racism. There was never a single complaint about that old flag on top of the car.  It still flies proudly all over the nation and all over the world as a positive symbol of the South.  Because symbols mean different things to different people at different times.   

Ben Jones
Chief of Heritage Operations
Sons of Confederate Veterans

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Sticks and Stones… And Why They REALLY Hate the Confederate Battle Flag

In 1863, Lincoln was losing an unpopular war and needed a "Cause" to rally his citizens, and convince Congress to continue funding his invasion of the Southern States. He found one in the issue of slavery.

The same man who, just two years earlier, supported an amendment that would have made slavery permanently legal if the Southern States would simply agree to stay in the Union, suddenly changed course and issued a proclamation that effectively freed slaves in territories over which he had no control, and left them enslaved in the locations where he actually had authority to free them.

A propaganda machine was set in motion, the effects of which were magnified with Yankee victory and subsequent subjugation, and continue to this day.

Even so, and in spite of their best efforts, there a still a great number of folks who know the truth and are not afraid to speak out. Losing its effectiveness over time, the "it's all about slavery" mantra needed updating.

It didn't take long for the enemy to find that new smokescreen... "racism". The fear of having that label applied was enough to make even some in our own heritage organizations cower, capitulate, and compromise to the point that the Confederate battle flag quickly became an endangered species, even at our own events.

These attacks have been deliberate and largely successful as a means to an end...one which has absolutely nothing to do with the American institution of slavery or "racism".

The Confederate Battle Flag is hated today for the same reason it was hated in 1861...because it is a universal symbol of resistance to tyranny and defiance of an overreaching and oppressive federal government.

Only when we find the courage and fortitude of our ancestors, and refuse to let these false accusations and fabricated labels deter us from our duty, will we effectively take back our heritage.

My Great- Great Grandfathers believed it was a Cause worth dying for. The least I can do to honor their memory and defend their good name, is stand up to name calling and derision.
"We will rejoice in thy salvation, and in the name of our God we will set up our banners..." Psalm 20:5

Susan Hathaway
Virginia Flaggers
P.O. Box 547
Sandston VA 23150
info@vaflaggers.com

Saturday, November 15, 2014

150th Anniversary of the Battle of Griswoldville



The Jarrell Plantation Historic Site, the 16th Georgia Volunteer Infantry, Co. G, "The Jackson Rifles", and The Camp of the Unknown Soldier, Sons of Confederate Veterans Camp # 2218, of Clinton, Jones County, Georgia, cordially invite one and all to the Commemorative Service of the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Griswoldville on Saturday, November 22, 2014. A living history program will begin at 9:30am with the commemoration starting promptly at 12:00 noon,  honoring all who served at the battle of Griswoldville and environs  in November of 1864. Our guest speaker will be Pastor John Weaver of Fitzgerald, Georgia. Although this event is sponsored by the Jarrell Plantation, it will not be held on that site but on the actual Griswoldville Battlefield - GPS: 32°52′00″N 83°28′10″W, regardless of weather conditions.  For more information, please call 478-986-5172, 478-396-4838 or 478-731-5531.


ONCE AGAIN, THE EVENT IS NOT HELD AT JARRELL PLANTATION. IT WILL BE ON THE ACTUAL GRISWOLDVILLE BATTLEFIELD.

Christmas at Hancock House



Tuesday, November 11, 2014

A Confederate Address for Veterans Day

Portion of An Address of Welcome on Veterans’ Day at the Florida Chautauqua on March the 13th, 1909.  By John L. McKinnon of Walton County, Florida

Fellow Comrades:  Our commander, General Pasco, in having me speak the welcoming words today, gave me to understand, that it did not require the commanding voice of oratory, nor the persuasive speech of eloquent words, neither was it necessary to dip one’s tongue in the fountain of the Muses, to welcome a confederate soldier.  But, says he, “it needs only the simple language of the heart, just true heart words.”

It was only then, I felt I might be able to make you feel at home with us, on this occasion, as my heart is always in tune with, and in sympathy for the Confederate soldier. For I know well of his motives, his grievances, his sacrifices. To some here, your bent forms, your empty sleeves, your halted steps coming down these aisles, may be suggestive of uncouthness. But to us, who remember the cause through which these came, they are grace, beauty and love. Your persecuted cause, that the world now calls “The Lost Cause,” made resistless appeals to your manhood.

To be sure, it sifted out the insincere and cowardly, but it left you a force of men the stronger for the winnowing. And brought out all that is noble and most daring in you. It struck open the deeps in your souls. No men could have been more sincere in the righteousness and justice of a cause, than you were in the one you espoused. Then shall we say of a truth, ours is a “Lost Cause?” “Nothing is settled until it is settled right.”

We know our grievances were settled by the power of the sword, and time has shown us how very unjust and unsatisfactory the arbitrament of the sword has been in the past. Now, near half a century has passed, and the problems of those days are the unsolved problems of today. “Courage yet,” writes James Renwick, the soul of the Cameronian Societies in the days of the Covenant and Killing Times. “Courage yet, for all that has come and gone. The loss of men is not the loss of the cause. What is the matter tho’ we all fall? The cause shall not fall.”

We see a rock in mid ocean, with its modest form high above the dashing waves, as a beacon light to those who would navigate treacherous seas; inviting the storm tossed ones to take rest on its firm foundations. We see the waves of every sea leaping upon and lashing it. And in the course of time, we find this beacon rock wasting itself away, beating back the angry waves. This rock is not lost, it is resting there on its granite bed, while the waves roll on; and maybe some day when the waters recede from the earth, or in some cosmic disturbances it may be the first to lift its broader form to bring light and give protection around.

So, too, in a political or governmental sense, we see a little Republic, born out of contentions and disturbances, modestly lifting itself up and taking its place among the Nations of the world. It, too, has a firm foundation on which to build–a constitution that eliminated the evils and interjected the good found in other governments. With a splendid code of laws enacted, guaranteeing self government. Yet this little Republic had hardly taken its place on the roll of Republics, before the Nations about began to leap upon and continued to pound upon it, until it wore itself out driving them back.

And my fellow comrades, you are here today as the representatives, the exponents of that little Republic–as the resultant–the residuum, if you please, of all that pounding. And your ardent support, all these years to the overpowering government, speaks in noble terms of your patriotism–your loyalty to the same. We feel that we voice the heart sentiments of every one here, when we say, in defending this little Republic, we did nothing that we are ashamed of, one that needs an apology for. None but the coward or degenerate sons would dare say less.

We know that we deserve as much respect from the world at large, for standing by our convictions, as those do who opposed us and will be satisfied with nothing less. We acknowledged that we were overpowered, or whipped if you please, but not debauched. The agonies that we know of–the blood that we saw flow, must stand for something. As the years roll on, in the course of human, events, there may come a time in our governmental affairs, when “Mercy and truth are met together: righteousness and peace have kissed each other”–when “truth crushed to the ground shall rise again.”

When the principles of State Sovereignty of Liberty (and not chattel slavery as some would have believe) that were so dear to us, and for which we fought and gave the best blood in our land, shall come to the front, assert themselves, and make this old Republic–so long as God will have it stand–by far the best government on the globe. Fellow Comrades–we do welcome you here with all our hearts, and to all the good things in our town; and hope through all the years that are going to be yours in this world, we may find you able to come up here annually, that we may have sweet fellowship one with another."

Source: History of Walton County  – Pages 384-389


In the 11th Month, on the 11th Day, at the 11th Hour, the armistice was signed that ended World War I. Since that time we have come to know November 11th as Veterans Day. While the Virginia Flaggers are  dedicated to honoring an
d remembering Confederate Veterans and defending the flags under which they fought and died,  we would like to pause on this Veterans Day, 2014, and say THANK YOU to all of the Veterans in our ranks, and all who have served with honor.  God bless our Veterans!

Dixie Division Color Guard


Susan Hathaway
Virginia Flaggers
P.O. Box 547
Sandston VA 23150
info@vaflaggers.com

Monday, November 10, 2014

Whose History—And Why It Matters



By Valerie Protopapas

Some time ago, I wrote an article in response to a review of the book, REBEL YELL: The Violence, Passion, and Redemption of Stonewall Jackson. I did so because I believed what the review’s author, Matthew Price, had written should not be allowed to go unchallenged. Mr. Price noted that, “(Stonewall) Jackson was no proslavery zealot, but (author) Gwynne does not address directly the somewhat vexed issue of writing sympathetically about a figure who still fought for a cause utterly discredited by history.” My question to Mr. Price was, to “whose history” was he alluding when he made that claim?

Because the matter involved the history and heritage of the South, I submitted my position to a Southern publication holding the same beliefs as expressed in my essay. However, it was rejected not because of my premise but because, in the words of those involved, the publication was “. . . not publishing as many Confederate history articles as previously . . . [Our] focus has shifted to current issues and to the future of the South.” Frankly, I fail to see the “disconnect” between that which I countered—Mr. Price’s definition of the cause for which Stonewall Jackson fought as “discredited”—and those same “current issues” which the publication wishes to address. After all, this contention is the very basis for the ongoing efforts of cultural genocide “currently” directed against the South! Ergo, it is neither rational nor intelligent to fight the present anti-Southern brushfires while ignoring the inferno causing them; that is, Mr. Price’s accepted version of “whose history!”

To further illustrate the importance of the defeat of Jackson’s “cause,” I ended my article by stating, “For those who look at this country today and wonder how we got a government that is essentially lawless . . . and a Constitution that has been nullified along with its Bill of Rights, most of the answers to their questions can be found in the defeat of General Thomas Stonewall Jackson’s noble cause, a cause which has been made ignoble through the triumph of that present version of “history.” I believe that such a conclusion does address “current issues” for until and unless we directly counter the present myth of the South’s seceding because of and fighting for slavery, nothing else we do will matter. If we vacate that “historic” field and leave Mr. Price’s version of “whose history” to define all issues relative to the South’s past, then every present effort, no matter how intelligent, rational or spirited, is going to be dashed to pieces on the rocks of politically correct, factually inaccurate racial rhetoric.

Responding to every claim that the Southern cause was all about slavery is analogous to going back and correcting a miscalculation at the beginning of a mathematical equation. For no matter how involved and lengthy the equation, if one starts with error one will never reach truth no matter how many years one takes to solve the problem. All efforts to avoid “Confederate history” and “move on” so as to address “current issues,” is a study in futility for each and every time the South is considered or discussed in the present, we invariably—and inevitably—go back to that same “Confederate history.” This cannot be avoided and all attempts to disconnect present from past only gives credence to those who say that we do so because the South’s past is shameful and has been discredited by actual (rather than “whose” ) history.

Did my response to Mr. Price involve merely matter of history or did it not represent an attempt to enlighten people to the facts that undergird the entire question of “today’s” South? Do we who desire to re-establish the South as representing the true vision of the Founding Fathers not understand that until people realize the ante-bellum South was not all moonlight, magnolias and slavery, we have little chance of achieving our goal? Do we not realize that if we do not thwart this wretched narrative about slavery as the South’s only cause, all of our efforts to stave off oblivion are in vain? If we do not understand this reality, then we are wasting our time trying to refute the image of the South as it is currently understood in the 21st century. The simple fact is that we must repudiate “whose history” and re-establish authentic history. Only by doing so will the people of the South—their faith, intellect, morality, humanity and way of life—be understood to be what is missing from the current United States! On the other hand, if we do not—if we permit “whose history” to remain the only history, the South will be consigned to oblivion.

Friday, November 07, 2014

Va Flaggers Danville Update: City Council Votes to Keep Flag Flying!



“Yesterday we fought a great battle, & gained a great victory, for which all the glory is due to God alone…My preservation was entirely due, as was the glorious victory, to our God.” Gen Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson, July 23, 1861, Letter to Anna
City of Danville denies request to remove Confederate flag! 

http://www.wsls.com/story/27322097/city-of-danville-denies-request-to-remove-confederate-flag

For the third time in six weeks, Confederate flag supporters from the SCV, UDC, Flaggers, OCR, Mechanized Cavalry, HPA, and other concerned citizens made their way to Danville and packed the City Council Meeting room.  Those who rose to speak in defense of the Confederate Flag and the men who fought and died beneath her, did so with eloquence and passion, and conveyed facts and information relevant to the vote about to take place.

After over two hours of debate and discussion, and in spite of some last minute shenanigans, the City Council of Danville Va voted last night 7-2 to DENY the request by the Danville Museum of Fine Arts and History to remove the Confederate Memorial flag from the grounds of the Sutherlin Mansion.

THE FLAG WILL CONTINUE TO FLY ON THE GROUNDS OF THE LAST CONFEDERATE CAPITOL!

Once the vote was taken, those of us in attendance in support of the flag quietly exited the room, mindful of our duty to remain honorable and charitable in victory.

Outside, a rebel yell or two could be heard in the streets... and just before leaving, we felt it proper to leave a reminder of the decision on the steps of City Hall, at the base of a statue erected by the UDC in honor of Danville Mayor Harry Wooding.

Mayor Wooding served as chief executive for 46 years, and was claimant to the title of the oldest mayor in the United States. Enlisting in the Confederate Army when only 17 years of age, he served in many major battles of the War Between the States, including the battles of Gettysburg and Manassas. When he died, he was Danville's last surviving Confederate Veteran.

It is for Private William Harry Wooding, Co. C, 5th Va Cavalry... and thousands like him, that so many came together to stand against this unwarranted attack. 

We will savor this moment and the momentum the victory will bring, but MUST remain vigilant, ever mindful of those who seek to dishonor our heritage, and at every opportunity, continue to advance the flags of Dixie!

Watch for information, coming soon, on how you can assist in plans to build on this victory in Danville, as well as leverage the decision in ongoing and future heritage battles across the Commonwealth.

Many thanks, again, to each of you who took time to contribute to this effort.  


Susan Hathaway
Virginia Flaggers
P.O. Box 547
Sandston VA 23150
info@vaflaggers.com

UPCOMING EVENTS:
Saturday, November 8th: Flagging the VMFA, 200 N. Boulevard, 11:00 am - 3:00 pm

Saturday, November 15th - Sunday, November 16th:  We will have a booth at the Capital of the Confederacy Civil War Show at Richmond International Raceway.  The 34th Annual Capital of the Confederacy Civil War Show presented by Mike Kent & Associates along with the Central Virginia Civil War Collector's Association. This is one of the oldest and most respected Civil War shows in the country.  Hours are Saturday 9am - 5pm and Sunday 9am - 3pm.  http://www.mkshows.com/cgi-bin/show_display.asp?52
Saturday, December 7th:  Mechanicsville Christmas Parade. The Va Flaggers will join the Edmund Ruffin Fire-Eaters in this VERY Confederate friendly parade.  ALL are welcome! 
Tuesday, December 9th:  6:00 pm.  The Va Flaggers will be making a presentation to the Va War Memorial in memory of Sgt. Cliff Troutman, and in honor of our Veterans.  All are invited to attend.  621 S. Belvedere St., Richmond

Thursday, December 11th:  Susan will be speaking at the December meeting of the A.H. Belo Camp #49, SCV, Dallas Texas
Friday, December 12th:  Susan will be speaking at the Christmas gathering of the
Major Robert M. White, Camp No. 1250, Sons of Confederate Veterans,Temple, Texas

Saturday, December 13th:  Susan will be speaking at the Christmas gathering of the Middleton Tate Johnson Camp #1648, SCV, Arlington, TX

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Annual Wirz Memorial Service Andersonville Georgia


Article by James W. King, Commander of the Albany Georgia Camp of the Sons of the Confederate Veterans organization.  I assist the Americus SCV camp in promoting the Wirz memorial service. jkingantiquearms@bellsouth.net This article is scheduled to be printed in several Southwest Georgia newspapers. 
 
The Americus camp of the Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV) organization will host  an annual Memorial Service for Civil War Andersonville Prison Commandant Capt. Henry Wirz on Sunday Nov. 9. The musical group, "A Joyful Noise," from Leesburg, will play and sing Southern Confederate songs and Gospel Hymns from 2 to 3PM followed by a formal memorial service. The public is invited to join SCV and pay tribute to a Southern hero and martyr.
 
The guest speaker will be Congressman Paul Broun from Athens.  Dr. Broun, a native of Athens, practiced medicine in Americus many years ago.  Confederate Reenactors "The Muckalee Guards" will provide Honor Guard duties during the Service.
 
When the War Between the States (Civil War) ended in 1865, Capt. Wirz was paroled.  However, shortly thereafter, he was arrested and carried to Washington, D.C. where he was placed in the Old Capitol Prison.  His trial before a military tribunal lasted several months, and included the perjured testimony of a Yankee soldier who was a deserter from a NY. Regiment who falsely claimed to be a great nephew of Lafayette of Revolutionary war fame.  For his false testimony against Capt. Wirz, he was given a position with the U.S. Dept. of the Interior.  It was later learned that this key witness whose perjured testimony contributed considerably to the conviction had never been at Andersonville. The vast Majority of defense witnesses for Capt. Wirz were not permitted to testify.  Many historians call his trial a farce and travesty of justice.  After the war, James Madison Page, a Michigan cavalryman, who had been a POW at Andersonville, wrote a book completely exonerating Wirz.
 
Capt. Wirz was found guilty of murdering 13 Union prisoners at Andersonville, although not a single body, nor even the name of any of the 13 was ever produced.  He was also falsely convicted on a second charge of conspiracy with high ranking members of the Confederate government to create the conditions that caused the high death rate. Wirz was made a scapegoat for the South.  On Nov. 10, 1865, Capt. Wirz was hanged in the yard of the Old Capitol Prison.  He declared his innocence to the end. The night before the hanging he was offered a commuted sentence if he would implicate Confederate President Jefferson Davis as a conspirator for Andersonville deaths. Wirz was an honorable man and would not lie to save his life.
 
After the hanging, the barbaric Yankees cut off his head and arms and other body parts, and exhibited them about the country. It took Capt. Wirz's attorney, Louis Schade, four years to collect enough body parts to have a Christian burial in Mount Olivet Cemetery in Washington.
   
The highly biased Northern version of Andersonville Civil War Prison (POW) Camp is well known however the true facts concerning Andersonville are not well known. The government of The Confederate States of America issued an order that a large POW prison should be constructed in early 1864 to alleviate crowding in existing camps in the South. The requirements were that it be constructed at a location further South away from the battle front and should be a healthy location with plenty of pure water, a running stream, close to grist and saw mills and if possible have shade trees. The location selected was in South Georgia in Sumter County and was officially named Camp Sumter although it became known as Andersonville. It was constructed to house 10,000 Union POW's however numbers increased to as high as 45,000 due to a policy by the Lincoln administration to discontinue exchanges.
 
The average death rate at other POW camps in the South was about 9% as compared to 12% for POW camps in the North where Confederate POW's were incarcerated.  In contrast the death rate at Andersonville was approximately 29% due to causes beyond the control of Confederate authorities and was unintentional. Also in contrast were the similar death rates at several Northern POW camps notably Elmira New York and Camp Douglas Chicago where the high death rates have been proven to be intentional.
 
It is a well known fact that the victor of a war writes the history from a biased perspective. Immediately after the end of the war absurd war crimes claims were made by Northern politicians, military authorities, newspapers, periodicals, and citizens that the decisions and conditions that caused the human disaster at Andersonville were intentional on the part of Confederate authorities. Demands for War Crimes Trials were made and the Commandant of Andersonville POW camp, Capt. Henry Wirz, was arrested, tried, and convicted in a farce trial by a military tribunal who had predetermined that a conviction would result. No War Crimes Charges against Northern POW commandants were ever made and no Northern POW camp has ever been enshrined by the U.S. Government as a memorial to Confederate POW's. Only Andersonville in the South has been enshrined and it has become a memorial to American POW's of all wars that have involved American veterans.
 
In defense of the Confederate government and Confederate prison officials in regards to Andersonville, a response was made in 1876, by the Southern Historical Society, consisting of 9 points that place the blame for deaths and suffering at Andersonville totally on Northern politicians and military authorities. Specifically President Lincoln, Sec. of War Stanton, Asst. Sec. of War Dana, and Gen. Grant shoulder the blame as noted in the following 9 points.

1. It is not denied that great suffering and mortality occurred but it was due to circumstances and conditions beyond CSA control.

2. If the death rate be adduced as "circumstantial evidence of barbarity" the rate of Confederate deaths was higher in Northern POW camps where there was an abundance of food, medicine, and shelter.

3. The Union POW's were given the same rations as Confederate guards and soldiers and equal treatment in hospitals as required by the CSA government and the death rate of CSA guards was the same as POW's.  The Northern Federal government did not have this humane policy.

4. The exchange of prisoners was refused by the North before the issue of black Union POW's became an issue.

5. The CSA government requested that Northern doctors and medicine be sent to treat  Northern POW's and the request was denied.

6. The CSA tried to buy supplies including bowls and other utensils to use in feeding the POW's. They offered to pay with cotton and gold but the offer was refused by the Lincoln administration.

7. The Federal Government under President Lincoln made medicine contraband causing suffering and death of Union POW's and all Southerners military and civilian.

8. Prior to the period of greatest mortality the CSA authorities offered to release the Andersonville POW's without exchange but the offer was not accepted by the Lincoln Administration who was told by CSA authorities "we cannot feed or care for them-just come get them". Sherman's barbaric war crimes in Georgia consisting of stealing, destroying, and burning made food and supplies even scarcer and increased suffering and mortality.

9. The Northern press was furnished lies and propaganda by Union Sec. and Asst Sec. of war Stanton and Dana claiming deliberate cruelties and war crimes by the South. The control of Northern POW camps was transferred by Stanton and Dana to vindictive partisan criminal elements and deliberate war crimes of cruelty, torture, and murder were committed against Confederate POW's as proven by a joint resolution of the U.S. Senate and House SR97.
 
In 1906 former Confederate General Stephen D. Lee charged the Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV) organization with the duty to defend the honor of the South and the Confederate Soldier:

“To you, Sons of Confederate Veterans, we will commit the vindication of the Cause for which we fought.  To your strength will be given the defense of the Confederate soldier's good name, the guardianship of his history, the emulation of his virtues, the perpetuation of those principles which he loved and which you love also, and those ideals which made him glorious and which you also cherish.  Remember, it is your duty to see that the true history of the South is presented to future generations.”
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