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Southern Heritage <br>News and Views: November 2009

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Fairfax Court House, Civil War Mecca

By William Connery

Civil War, Fairfax Court House
By Edward Coleman Trexler, Jr.
James River Valley Publishing
$18.00, 230 pages, illustrated

In Charleston, SC, you have Fort Sumter, where the opening salvos of the Civil War were fired on April 12, 1861. In Baltimore, MD, there is President Street Station, Camden Station and the route in between along the Inner Harbor and Pratt Street, where the first bloodshed of the War Between the States occurred on April 19, 1861. Many of the other first momentous events of that War happened around or close to Fairfax Court House (FCH), from its occupation by Virginia (Confederate) home guards in April-May 1861 until its permanent occupation by Union forces in February 1862.

Edward Coleman Trexler, Jr., a descendant of some of the first families of Virginia and author of two previous Virginia histories (Descendants of Conquest, Families of the James River Valley of Virginia and Endowed by the Creator, Families of Fairfax Court House, Virginia) has taken on a monumental task of detailing a seeming back water (when compared to destinations like Gettysburg and Antietam) of the Civil War, but a location where many firsts of the War occurred.

Fairfax Court House was the front line of Confederate defenses during the first 10 months of the War and many important events took place there. Private Peyton Anderson became the first Confederate soldier to shed his blood, while on picket duty on May 27, 1861. A Union cavalry raid occurred May 31-June 1, 1861, which resulted in the death of Captain John Quincy Marr, the first Confederate officer killed in the War. On the same day, General P.G.T. Beauregard, the hero of Charleston, came to take over the defenses. He brought in South Carolina forces as the first regular troops in the area. These forces attacked a Union troop train in the nearby village of Vienna, where an unusual event happened. In his report, Union General Robert Schenck wrote: “the whole force attacking us was at least 2,000, as follows: South Carolina Troops, 800: … and in addition to these, was a body of 150 armed picked negroes, who were observed by us, as they lay flat in the grain and did not fire a shot.”

So the first mention of black troops in the War Between the States were fighting for the Confederacy!

By the end of June, Beauregard had his advanced forces at FCH, with his main body of men about 15 miles further southwest at Manassas. He wanted to concentrate his men at FCH. The final plan agreed upon was to have his forces first fall back to Centreville, then further to the fords at Bull Run (Manassas). It was this period (July 16 to July 21) that the Union army marched west to Manassas, where it was defeated by Confederate forces, and retreated back through FCH, which was back under Confederate control by July 23. It was there that by September Gen. Beauregard set up the headquarters of his Army of the Potomac.

By the end of the year, two important events took place at FCH. Because of the confusion at Manassas battlefield, especially between the Star Spangled Banner and the Stars and Bars, Gen. Beauregard felt it necessary to implement a new flag that would be greatly different from the Union banner. The Confederate Congress rejected his suggestion. But he met at FCH with Gen. Joseph E. Johnston and agreed on a banner to be used as a battle flag; in the X of the St. Andrew’s Cross, with a red background, blue cross bars and white stars. Thus was the Confederate Battle Flag born.

At about the same time (September 30 to October 3), President Jefferson Davis visited his generals and troops at FCH. Gen. Beauregard set forth his audacious plan to mass Confederate forces at FCH and attack the federal capital in Washington. He preferred the bold, but risky move to the certainty of unrest, dissension, and sickness by wintering in idleness. Davis did not believe that the men and materiel sufficient to conquer the Northern Capital could be brought to FCH. Many military historians who believe that Davis’ failure to switch to an offensive mode at this conference was the pivotal decision of the war have constantly examined the proceedings of this meeting. Some say that the Confederacy’s best chance at victory would have occurred if the defeated Union troops had been followed into Washington after the Battle of Manassas in July!

As a result of the October Conference, General Beauregard moved his main forces back to Centreville for the winter, with advanced troops still in the FCH vicinity. On March 10, 1862, Union forces entered FCH and would remain there for the remainder of the war. In March 1862, Union General George McClellan held his ‘War Council of Generals’ at FCH, where he was commander of the Union Army of the Potomac. So FHC had been headquarters for Confederate and Union Armies of the Potomac. The Union Army kept its name until the end of the War; the Confederate name disappeared and became the Army of Northern Virginia.

For the rest of the War, FCH became a Union staging area, especially as the events leading to Antietam in September 1862 and Gettysburg in July 1863 swirled around it. The major event was the capture of Union General Stoughton by John Singleton Mosby and his Partisan Rangers on March 9, 1863. Mosby and his men remained a thorn in the side of the Union as they raided throughout Fairfax and Loudon Counties until the end of the war.

After the war, Fairfax Court House settled back into the quiet Virginia countryside. We should be grateful that Mr. Trexler has made this fine contribution to Civil War history. He treats both sides of the conflict with respect and honor, and has rescued an area that thousands drive through every day, on their way to work in Washington, DC, not knowing the important history they are rumbling past.

William Connery is a freelance writer in Alexandria, VA. He has written and spoken on various WBTS topics. He can be reached at

Wednesday, November 18, 2009



Like so many other Americans, I spent many hours in front of my television taking in the commentary that followed the tragedy of November 5 in which a terrorist went on a shooting rampage at Fort Hood in Texas and murdered more than a dozen of our great military personnel while wounding more than two dozen others. Many of the brave dead were still quite young and just beginning their adult lives. I felt great sadness for those who were killed and their families left behind who can only wonder ,"Why?".

Unlike many of the millions who followed the reporting of this sad event, however, I had thoughts of a far different nature than they, I'm sure. I had thoughts of another tragedy that occurred roughly 150 years ago and lasted 4 years during which far more were killed and wounded and many more were affected for generations to come. My thoughts turned to the invasion of the South by military forces of the federal government and the tragic struggle that followed which resulted in more than 600,000 deaths of military personnel on both sides and even more wounded with many suffering the loss of limbs or their sanity. Countless hundreds of thousands of civilians were also victims of this invasion. Those not suffering loss of their own life generally lost family members and, frequently, their home, possessions and future.

I was reminded of these things because Fort Hood, the largest U.S. military installation in the country, is named for Confederate general John Bell Hood.

I found it interesting that throughout all the TV coverage that I watched, this fact was rarely mentioned. In fact, the only network that I saw mention this was Fox News Channel. Fox had a scroll across the bottom of the screen during one broadcast I was watching which stated that the installation was named for General John Bell Hood and identified him as a Confederate general. Kudos for Fox! In fairness, I've got to mention that I rarely watch any network for news other than Fox, although I did switch around a bit to get the flavor of the reporting. If any of you reading this happened to notice any other news network (CNN, ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC) mentioning this fact, please email me with this information.

The fact that a major U.S. military installation is named for a Confederate hero is really not all that unusual. Other major facilities in addition to Fort Hood include Fort Benning, Georgia, named for General Henry Benning; Fort Polk, Louisiana, named for General Leonidas Polk; Fort Bragg, North Carolina, named for General Braxton Bragg; Fort Gordon, Georgia, named for General John B. Gordon; Fort A.P. Hill, Virginia, named for General A.P. Hill and Fort Lee, Virginia, which is named, of course, for General Robert E. Lee. Interestingly, the major helicopter post in the country, Fort Rucker, Alabama, is named for a Confederate COLONEL, Edmund Rucker.

I like to mention all this to the occasional "PC know-it-all" who challenges me with the silly statement that "all Confederates were traitors". After mentioning these forts and explaining that it is not the policy of the U.S. Military to name installations for traitors, I always challenge these types to locate any U.S. military installation named for Benedict Arnold. 'Nuff Said.

Well, now that you know that Fort Hood is named for General John Bell Hood, let me tell you a bit about the man. John Bell Hood was one of only eight Confederates to reach the rank of full general (equivalent to 4-star). Bear in mind that during the course of the War there were 425 men who would become general officers of the Confederacy. Of these, 328 would be appointed to the rank of brigadier general; 72 would become major generals; 17 would reach the rank of lieutenant general and only 8would attain the rank of full general.

Of these eight full generals (those who would command an army as opposed to a corps, division or brigade), John Bell Hood was the youngest. He had just reached the age of 33 when he was promoted to full general in July 1864. By the way, the other seven full generals of the Confederacy were Albert Sidney Johnston, Joseph E. Johnston, Braxton Bragg, Samuel Cooper, Pierre G.T. Beauregard, Edmund Kirby Smith and, of course, the magnificent Robert E. Lee. Of these eight, all had field commands during the War except for Samuel Cooper who served as both Inspector General and Adjutant General throughout the conflict which made him the ranking general officer of the Confederate Army, outranking even General Lee.

John Bell Hood was born in Owingsville, Kentucky, on June 1, 1831. He graduated from West Point in the Class of 1853. He served in the U.S. Army in both California and Texas. While serving on the Texas frontier, he came to the attention of his commander, Lt. Colonel Robert E. Lee, who thought highly of the young Hood.

Hood remained in the U.S. Army until April 17, 1861 when he resigned his commission as a 1st lieutenant. He immediately joined the Confederate Army and began a meteoric rise through the ranks. He distinguished himself as a fighter on many fields of combat and was promoted to the rank of brigadier general on March 3, 1862. He led the "Texas Brigade" at Gaines Mill, Second Manassas and Sharpsburg. He was promoted to major general on October 10, 1862 and commanded a division under General James Longstreet. He performed admirably at Fredericksburg and Gettysburg but was wounded severely at the latter and lost the use of his left arm.

Moving south, he commanded Longstreet's Corps at Chickamauga but was again injured severely and lost his right leg. For his admirable and distinguished service he was promoted to lieutenant general on February 1, 1864. He was assigned to a corps under General Joseph E. Johnston but assumed command of the Army of Tennessee when General Johnston was relieved of his command. Hood was promoted to full general on July 18, 1864.

General Hood's health had deteriorated badly and because of his two severe injuries he had to be strapped to his horse to ride. He was also having to take heavy doses of medication for the pain he was experiencing. He still directed the Army during the Atlanta campaign before marching his forces into Tennessee.

His army suffered shattering defeats at Franklin and Nashville for which General Hood received severe criticism from some quarters. Because of the criticism and his poor health, he was relieved of his command at his own request in January 1865 and reverted to his permanent rank of lieutenant general where he served under General Beauregard until surrendering in May 1865.

There is no doubt that General Hood was a superior commander at the brigade and division level and this competence was directly responsible for his rapid advancement through the ranks. His troops set standards to which other units aspired.

Because of the defeats in the Atlanta campaign to a far larger and better supplied army and the tragedies that occurred at Franklin and Nashville which were blamed on him, General Hood has been cast in an unfavorable light by some historians. I think this is unfair. By the time he assumed command of the Army of Tennessee, the inevitability of the outcome of the struggle was almost beyond doubt. The fighting forces of the South were worn paper thin and the supply lines were shattered. The struggle had been gallant but could not be maintained without fresh troops and resources which were not forthcoming.

I have long believed that General Hood's reasoning in Tennessee and his ability to make tactical decisions were greatly affected by the laudanum and other strong drugs he had to take to combat the pain he was experiencing. I have a great deal of admiration for General Hood based on his fighting spirit and his outstanding record during the first three and 1/2 years of the War. He gave all he had and then some. I think the decision by the U.S. Military to name Fort Hood in his honor was a wise and praiseworthy one.

After the War, John Bell Hood retired to New Orleans but, sadly, died at the young age of 48 in the yellow fever epidemic that swept the city. He is buried in Metairie Cemetery, very appropriately not far from the graves of General P.G.T. Beauregard and General Richard Taylor - two other stalwarts of the Confederacy.


Bob Hurst is a Southern Patriot who belongs to a number of historical, heritage and ideological organizations. He has a special interest in Confederate history. He also serves as Commander of Col. David Lang Camp, Sons of Confederate Veterans, in Tallahassee and 2nd Lt. Commander of the Florida Division, SCV. He can be contacted at or 850-878-7010.

National Battlefield Group Announces Ambitious Plan to Preserve Hallowed Ground at Chancellorsville

Land was scene of heavy fighting during “Stonewall” Jackson’s legendary flanking maneuver

(Chancellorsville, Va.) – The Civil War Preservation Trust (CWPT), America’s largest nonprofit battlefield preservation group, has announced the beginning of a $2.125 million national campaign to preserve one of the most historically significant unprotected landscapes of the entire Civil War. The 85-acre property, known locally as the Wagner Tract, was the scene of bloody struggle during the battle of Chancellorsville on May 2, 1863. It was here on that fateful day that Confederate Gen. Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson led his legendary flanking maneuver on May 2, 1863 that turned the tide of battle in favor of the South.

Despite the high price tag and difficult economic climate, CWPT president James Lighthizer found the choice to pursue the property an easy one. “This land at Chancellorsville is arguably one of the most historically significant pieces of hallowed ground CWPT has ever saved, and we have just got to get it,” he said. “Just like our purchase of the Slaughter Pen Farm at Fredericksburg three years ago, this is what we are in business to do. This is why we exist!”

Prominent historian Robert K. Krick vehemently agreed with Lighthizer’s assessment, not only because of the land’s historic pedigree, but for its overall contribution toward protection of the Chancellorsville Battlefield. “The preservation coup by CWPT in acquiring 85 acres in the midst of the Stonewall Jackson’s flank attack deserves universal applause as a spectacular success. The Wagner tract, just east of Wilderness Church, includes nearly 2,000 feet of frontage on the north shoulder of the historic Orange Plank Road. Extinguishing the potential for dense commercial use along that long stretch seems to me to constitute the most dazzling jewel in the CWPT’s long and impressive history of preserving hallowed ground.”

Timing of the effort is particularly auspicious because it allows preservationists to take advantage of a limited window of availability to receive state funding toward the venture. Through the end of 2009, projects in the Old Dominion are eligible to participate in a 2-to-1 matching grant program for Civil War battlefield protection. This is in addition to federal matching grants available to preserve historic battlefield land outside of national parks, leaving CWPT to raise less than half the purchase price from private donations. But in order to take advantage of this unprecedented opportunity, the transaction must be closed in the next two months.

In recognition of the immense historic value of the property, CWPT is offering a unique opportunity to those interested in contributing to this worthwhile fundraising effort. Each individual or organization that donates more than $100 to the acquisition effort will be acknowledged on a permanent plaque that will be installed on the battlefield site. Successively larger donations will also be appropriately differentiated as an additional expression of gratitude. Those interested in contributing to the fundraising campaign are encouraged to visit CWPT’s website at

The Battle of Chancellorsville is universally acknowledged as one of the most critical engagements of the Civil War. Outnumbered Confederate forces scored a stunning victory when Gen. Robert E. Lee divided his army in the face of a superior enemy, sending Stonewall Jackson on an audacious 12-mile flanking march around the Army of the Potomac. With his movements disguised by cavalry operations and dense woodlands, Jackson was able to launch a full scale attack on the unsuspecting Union Eleventh Corps, which largely fled before the onslaught.

The assault and ensuing rout was one of the greatest tactical victories of the war, but its aftermath was devastating for the Confederacy. The triumphant Jackson rode out past the Confederate position, scouting whether he could press his advantage and do further damage to the Union Army with a nighttime attack. Returning to his lines, Jackson and his staff were misidentified as Union cavalry by troops on the picket line and came under friendly fire; Jackson was struck three times, resulting in the amputation of his left arm. Although the surgery was a success, he contracted pneumonia and, in a staggering blow to the Confederacy,
died a week later.

CWPT has previously preserved other key portions of the Chancellorsville battlefield, including 215 acres that were the scene of the strategically crucial fighting along the Orange Turnpike on May 1, 1863. Now interpreted and open to the public as the First Day at Chancellorsville battlefield park, the site has become a popular historic destination in the region. The organization has also participated in the protection of two other locations on the battlefield, including 16 additional acres associated with Stonewall Jackson’s flank attack.

In addition to the Wagner property at Chancellorsville, CWPT is currently engaged in active fundraising efforts to save significant battlefield properties at Appomattox Station, Glendale, Fredericksburg and the Wilderness. To learn more about these and future opportunities, visit

With 55,000 members, CWPT is the largest nonprofit battlefield preservation organization in the United States. Its mission is to preserve our nation’s endangered Civil War battlefields and to promote appreciation of these hallowed grounds. CWPT has preserved more than 28,000 acres of battlefield land across the nation, including 13,500 acres in Virginia and approximately 315 acres at Chancellorsville.

CWPT’s website is

Monday, November 16, 2009

On the track of Heros von Borcke

By Hubert Leroy

In 1885 or thereabouts, in the small Prussian village of Giesenbruegge (Pomerania), was a large country-house over which waved every day the Confederate Battleflag!Maybe it seems paradoxical but you must know that the landlord had served with the South during the American Civil War.

As a matter of fact, on May 26th, 1862 in the harbour of Charleston a big burly Prussian got ashore from the blockade runner Kate. His name was Johan Heros von Borcke, a cavalry officer who, like a number of contemporary Europeans, came to enlist in the Confederate military forces.

Von Borcke served in General J.E.B. Stuart’s cavalry and, thanks to his ability, was promoted to the rank of chief of staff. The Prussian trooper took part in many actions, always impetuously leading the way with the Virginian squadrons. For all that, during the battle of Middleburg in June 1863, he was wounded; after a long convalescence, he was found unfit for combat. Ever since, he served in administrative posts more appropriate to his health. In December 1864, now a lieutenant colonel, he was entrusted by Jefferson Davis with a diplomatic mission in Europe. That is in London that he came to know of Lee’s surrender in April 1865.

The rest of his life was rich in various events, notably his participation in the war between Prussia and Austria, in 1866. All that will make an article in a next CHAB News.

September 2008

In the morning of September 3rd, a motor coach bringing from Berlin scions of the von Borcke and Stuart families, representatives of the SCV (Sons of Confederate Veterans) and of the UDC (United Daughters of the Confederacy), as well as two members of the CHAB, Heinrich Wirz and myself, stopped in a small village in Poland, over whose market-place waved a Confederate Battleflag.

We were in the old Giesenbruegge, now called Gizyn after the events and changes which happened since the end of World War II.

We had come in that remote place in order to be present at the ceremony of homage to Heros von Borcke whose grave had finally been found after long years of quest. As a matter of fact, during the Soviet advance, the von Borcke family’s manor had been partly destroyed, like its outbuildings and chapel. The tombs in the near-by graveyard had been sacked by soldiery searching for gold and jewels. Every inhabitant of this small village – first of all Jerzek Zigmund, the mayor – was waiting for us with impatience and curiosity, for our coming had been announced for several months yet. The chapel ruins in which lay the graves of von Borcke and his parents nowadays are in a wood which partly covers the ancient estate. So, it has been necessary to clear it and to cut an access way for the event.

Some people could smile at that unusual ceremony but it had the merit, friendship and peace being the keywords, of gathering together representatives of various nations: Poland, Germany, USA-CSA, Switzerland and Belgium. As for the inhabitants of that small village in the ends of the world, it was The event!

After the spirited speeches, Eckhard von Borcke, great-grandson of the Prussian trooper, and J.E.B. Stuart IV laid on the grave a Confederate Cross of Honour, as well as a bunch of flowers, and a triple salute of musketry by the re-enactment group Hampton Legion from Berlin was the climax of the ceremony.

During the whole event, under a dazzling sky, the village choral society and some local musicians were performing in homage to H. von Borcke and in honour of us privileged visitors; it was well appreciated.

We had a very hearty rural meal and then the whole audience was bidden to go into the feast room where we attended a musical interlude and some dances from the Polish folklore brilliantly performed by charming young ladies. The day was drawing to an end and it was in company of J.E.B. Stuart IV, an old friend, and his son J.E.B. Stuart V that, after an endless drive, I rejoined Berlin, extremely happy.

Early on the next morning, the Stuarts flied off to Virginia. As far as I am concerned, I went back to Belgium with my head full of precious remembrances of those few days spent with friends passionately fond of that Confederacy whose memory is far from vanishing. We must also thank our friend and member from Kentucky, Nancy Hitt, who was the mainspring of that memorable meeting.

The group in uniform are members of the SCV

Nancy Hitt, from the UDC Kentucky

From left to right: Eckhart von Borcke, Col. Jeb Stuart IV, Heinrich Wirz and Hubert Leroy

Grave of Heros von Bolcke at Giesenbruegge in Poland. It has been sacked by Russian soldery during WW II.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Beauvoir Announces Ground-Breaking for New Library

Beauvoir, the Jefferson Davis Home, will conduct a groundbreaking ceremony for the new Jefferson Davis Presidential Library and Museum on at 2 PM on Sunday, December 6, 2009 (the 120th anniversary of Jefferson Davis' death).

The original Jefferson Davis Library opened in 1998 and was severely damaged in Hurricane Katrina on August 29,2005. Due to the damage caused by Katrina, the original library had to be demolished. The Combined Boards of Beauvoir have approved and signed a contract with J.C. Duke Contractors of Mobile for the construction of the Jefferson Davis Presidential Library.

The construction of the new library is estimated to be 550 days(18 months) in duration and the new building will be a 25,500 sq. ft. structure.

The public is invited to attend the ground-breaking of the new library on Sunday December 6, 2009 at Beauvoir.

Beauvoir is located at 2244 Beach Boulevard, Biloxi, Mississippi 39531. Phone 228-388-4400. web address:

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

SCV Issues Statement on VFW Flag Ban in Homestead Florida

Sons of Confederate Veterans Headquarters
Columbia, TN

The Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV) has been informed that they may not march in the Homestead, Florida Veteran's Day Parade with the Confederate Battle Flag. The SCV is quite surprised by this anomaly. The SCV honors and respects the members of the VFW, in fact many veterans are members of both. All across the nation the SCV and VFW have worked together in harmony and many occasions to honor America's Veterans.

However, the SCV condemns the decision by the local chapter of the Veterans of Foreign Wars in Homestead, the sponsor of the parade, as the Confederate Battle Flag is a banner which denotes the valor and bravery of some of America's most renowned veterans - the Confederate Soldier. By denying the SCV participation in the parade the Homestead post of the VFW has shown that it is no longer an organization that supports the memory of Veterans but is instead more interested in promoting an agenda of political correctness.

For the last 90 years Confederate Veterans have been recognized as US Veterans by the United States Congress. The actions of the VFW show that they believe they have the authority to re-define who qualifies to be recognized as a veteran in defiance of congressional statue. Further, the actions of the VFW, in denying the SCV entry into the parade, are repugnant to the sacrifice made by many millions of veterans who have fought to preserve the Rights of Americans as established in the Constitution.

This arbitrary action of the Homestead VFW Post is an affront to Southerners of all colors and ethnic backgrounds whose ancestors served honorably in the military of the CSA, and today continue to lead the nation in voluntary service and casualties suffered by U. S. forces in conflicts around the world.

In these times all Americans should be drawn together, and American veterans equally recognized, rather than be torn apart by a small group who wishes to inject controversy and disruption into the rightful recognition of ALL American Veterans. It is also greatly disappointing that the local Veterans of Foreign Wars post is allowing itself to be used in this manner.

The SCV urges the community in Homestead, Florida to express their rightful disappointment that the memory of one group of American Veterans, Confederate Veterans, are being disparaged by the Veterans of Foreign Wars.

For more information contact
Chuck McMichael, SCV Commander in Chief, at 318-963-9892 or
Chuck Rand, SCV Chief of Staff, at 318-387-3791 or

The SCV is a 501(c)3 non-profit historical and educational organization founded in 1896. See

Saturday, November 07, 2009

A Veterans Day Tribute and Remembrance

By Calvin E. Johnson, Jr., Author of book “When American Stood for God, Family and Country,” Freelance writer and member of the Sons of Confederate Veterans.

Veterans Day, Wednesday November 11th, is a time to pause and thank our Veterans!

But is America still a Free and Sovereign Nation where courageous men and women fought for the right of free speech, the press, worship, the right to keep and bear arms and real freedom?

Do we still teach our children about men like Patrick Henry who said “Give me Liberty or Give me Death?”

What does Veterans Day mean to you?

To me, Veterans Day, is a time to remember American patriot Patrick Henry who said, "It can not be emphasized too strongly are too often that this great nation was founded not by the religionists but by Christians, not on religion but on the Gospel of Jesus Christ."

Let us remember that General George Washington led his troops in prayer before they crossed the Delaware River on a cold-snowy night to surprise the British and Hessian troops on December 26, 1776. They gained a great victory in the worst of conditions.

Our children should know of Andrew Jackson and a ragtag army who defeated the British at New Orleans in 1815. A young officer named Wade Hampton of South Carolina rode 750 miles in ten days to Columbia, South Carolina, and then to Washington, D.C. to tell President Madison and the country of the great victory.

We shall never forget that in March, 1836, a small band of men at the Alamo stood between Santa Anna's 5,000 man army and the unprepared small army of Sam Houston. In the lonely monastery were Davy Crockett, Jim Bowie and less than two hundred men. Just three days before Santa Anna's final assault, these men came into the Alamo, knowing their lives were at great risk.

On their last night on earth the Alamo men prayed that their battle would, somehow, lead to victory even though they would die. Their prayer was answered. A few days later at San Jacinto, Houston defeated Santa Anna with the battle cry of, "Remember the Alamo!”

Let us remember “1861” when our nation became two nations. The South under President Jefferson Davis and the North under President Abraham Lincoln, fought for four long, bloody years to decide our future. Both armies prayed to the same God for guidance. This war has many names but the United States Congress would officially name it "The War Between the States." Since 1865, the Confederate Battle flag has been the blood brother of the Stars and Stripes as Southerners have taken their place at the front in all our nation's wars.

Let us remember that in February of 1898 the American Battleship Maine blew up in Havana Harbor with nearly 300 dead. The Spanish-American War brought Teddy Roosevelt's "Roughriders" to Cuba to charge up San Juan Hill to victory. Old Joe Wheeler, an ex-Confederate Cavalry General, was there with him. Wheeler got excited and forgot which war he was in. He shouted, "There they are, go get those Yankees!"

In Greensboro, North Carolina a six year old girl named Mary Frances Barker awoke to the shouts of a boy far down the street. It was 5 A.M., November 12, 1918. It was the paper boy shouting, "The War is Over, the war is over!" World War one had finally ended on the 11th day of the 11th hour of the 11th month of November in 1918.

The United States Congress proclaimed "Armistice Day" a year later on November 11, 1919.

On Sunday, December 7, 1941, the first word of the attack on Pearl Harbor came by radio. Newspapers did run "extras" that Sunday with little information and a lot of fear. This Sunday would become "a day of infamy." On Monday the 8th President Franklin D. Roosevelt, during a special session of congress, told of the attack and declared war on Japan. His speech was broadcast on the radio.

F.D.R.'s closing words were: "With the abounded determination of our people, we will gain the inevitable triumph, so help us God!"

Since that time there was Korea, Vietnam, Grenada, Desert Storm, Afghanistan and Iraq. We can not forget they we were attacked again on September 11, 2001.

We have, since World War II, seen prayer taken out of our schools and "Under God" in the pledge of allegiance under attack. Are we still a nation of God as we once were during the times of our founding fathers and mothers? With all that is happening in the world today, it seems to me that we may need God more then ever.

Armistice Day became Veterans Day in 1954. To forget our Veterans is to dishonor!

Wednesday, November 04, 2009





It is with great pleasure that I report to you the success of the 2009 League of the South National Conference, held in Chattanooga, Tennessee, this past weekend.

Our attendance was up considerable from last year; at one point I noticed that most of the 300 seats were filled. Moreover, many of the attendees were new LS members or eager prospective members (some of whom have joined over the last couple of days). We also were the beneficiary of several generous donations to help continue our Communications Project headed by Mike Crane.

My thanks to our fine group of speakers: Mark Thomey, Dennis Fusaro, Tom Moore, Franklin Sanders, Mike Crane, and Ray McBerry. As usual, our MC, Alex Cheek, did a wonderful job. We also thank the vendors who came and provided some great resources for our guests.

I also would like to thank Tennessee LS Chairman David Jones for hosting us in the Volunteer State once again.

The mood at the conference was serious and determined; I sensed an air of quiet and steady confidence among our folks that tells me they're ready to work even harder for the League's goal of State sovereignty, the well being of the Southern people, and Southern independence.

All in all, this was the best conference we've had in several years. I very much appreciate the sacrifices everyone there made to make it such a fine event. Now, we must contiune to grow and move forward, and we will with God's help.

For Southern independence,

Michael Hill
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