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First Battle of Bull Run (Manassas): July 21, 1861

Manassas and its vicinity
On July 21, 1861, the Confederates defeated the Union army in the First Battle of Bull Run (Manassas), the first major conflict of the Civil War.

In the months following the Confederate attack on Fort Sumter, there was increasing political pressure in the North for the Union army to launch an attack against the Rebels and quickly end the war. Despite General Irvin McDowell‘s concerns that his troops weren’t prepared, he made plans to attack the Confederate forces gathered along Bull Run stream, near Manassas Junction, Virginia, about 25 miles from Washington DC.

McDowell and his approximately 30,000 troops left Washington DC on July 16, slowly making their way to Centreville, Virginia. Once at Centreville, McDowell delayed for two days, unknowingly allowing time for thousands more Confederate troops under Joseph Johnston to join the main force under PGT Beauregard, bringing the Confederates’ total forces to roughly the same number as the Union’s.

Portrait of Maj. Gen. Irvin McDowell, officer of the Federal Army

McDowell’s plan was to send half his troops in a feint at the Confederate center, while the other half of his force would come from upstream to attack the Confederates’ left flank. Despite problems with synchronizing the two parts of the attack, at first it seemed like the Union would carry the day. However, a strong Confederate defense at Henry House Hill on the Confederate left, as well as a crucial attack on the Union right flank, helped turn the tide of the battle (and it was there that Thomas J. Jackson received his immortal nickname, “Stonewall”). The Union retreat soon turned to panic, and troops fled in chaos back to Washington, as did the spectators from the capital who had come to observe the battle.

Dead on battlefield at 1st Bull Run (Manassas)
The casualties were shockingly high, though they would pale in comparison to those of later battles. Estimates vary, but the Union suffered about 481 dead, 1,011 wounded, and 1,216 missing (many of them taken prisoner), while the Confederates experienced 387 dead, 1,582 wounded, and 12 missing.

Though a disaster for the Union and a triumph for the Confederacy, the battle signaled to both sides that the war would be longer and bloodier than either had anticipated.

Did you have ancestors who served in the First Battle of Bull Run (Manassas)? Tell us about it! If you want to learn more about the battle, start a search on Fold3.

228 Comments

  1. Regarding ancestors in 1st Battle of Bull Run…my G-Grandfather, Levi B. Amerman (he was also in the second Battle of Bull Run), Union soldier.

    • Leona: As you can see by my last name I am of the Jewish faith. I am a history freak and collect firearms from this period. My Great Grandfather by family tradition served in the union army, his last name was Bloomenfeld and he came here from Austria.
      I am very interested in finding other people who were of my faith who served in the war on either side. I know for a fact that many served the Confederate States of America including Judah Benjamin who was Jefferson Davids right hand man and was with him on his escape from Richmond. As your name is perhaps Germanic (and of course not necessarily a Jewish name) I am interested in learning if in fact your family was of that faith.
      I am not speaking of Religion here just background so please do not take this request for information in any way but a quest for knowledge, I do not wish to pry just learn.
      Thanks
      Bruce Cohen

  2. My great grandfather Patrick Breen served in the first battle of Bull Run and many other major engagements during the Civil War. An Irish Potato Famine immigrant, he enlisted in the U.S. Army at age 16 as a fifer. He was assigned to Co. C, 2d U.S. Infantry Regiment with which unit he served virtually his entire 21 year military career. He swapped his fife for a weapon and for most of his career he was an infantryman. For several years he was Co. C’s First Sergeant.

  3. One of my ancestor’s, John Marshall Whilden, fought for the Confederacy at both 1st and 2nd Manassas and was wounded during both. He was fatally wounded after repeatedly leading his regiment against a Union stronghold. It’s been written “Major John Whilden, the boy major of 23rd regiment, fell at the Second Battle of Manassas, pierced by five bullets while leading his regiment, flag in hand, several color bearers having been shot down just before.” While we aren’t sure of the exact day of his death or where he was buried, we do know about a month earlier, he had celebrated his 23rd birthday.

    Also of note is that he one of the four Citadel cadets at Fort Sumter when cannons fired on the Star of the West, beginning the war. At the time, he was Cadet Capt. J.M.Whilden, Company A. In the early 1970’s it was determined by researchers for The Citadel, that he was the one in command, sighted the gun and gave the order to fire”.

    • Your ancestor’s story moved me to tears, as I look at the 23 year old young men who are my daughter’s friends from colleges across the SEC it seems amazing that our young men could be so brave. Of course, they’re still brave, the ones fighting today. All my ancestors so far discovered fought for the north, but I’m a southerner by the Grace of God! (Go UGA, Bama and Ole Miss!)

    • Thanks for this insightful commentary on your ancestor’s place in history. I realize this is a hot topic right now, but it is still part of our nations history and putting a name and face with these historical events gives us a better visual of the times. I agree with Laura that when we put these events in perspective with people we know today it is very sad, indeed.

    • Uhhh, no. The “Star of the West” was fired on by Citadel cadets from the Morris Island battery as the ship entered Charleston Harbor, intent on resupplying Union troops at Ft. Sumter.
      There were more than four Citadel cadets involved but just four are known to have manned the Number One gun – a 24 pounder; Whilden was one of the four.
      As to Whilden’s death, although it was certainly heroic, there is no evidence to suggest that he was shot five times; only that he was mortally wounded on the fourth assault in which he carried the colors.

  4. My great grandfather Daniel Pickering Grant served in the sixth infantry New Hampshire company D, and was wounded at the second battle of Bull Run. I am very proud of all the brave men who served on both sides.

    • I had several men in my family serve in the Confederacy, mostly uncles, but also gg grandfathers. Most survived the war, though a few died shortly after due to wounds/diseases they sustained while serving.

      They were unrepentant of their support of slavery to their deaths, and they taught that storyline of “Northern Aggresssion” to their descendants, and it was taught to me by my dad. They also supported the continuation of the “Peculiar Institution” through the use of the sharecropper system, and the use of prison labor. From my perspective it is the only stain of dishonor my family has suffered in 150 years of nearly continuous military service. These men were honorable their entire lives, with the exception of this very glaring crime against humanity. Their actions directly after the war compounded through the years in a way that kept the South from fully recovering, even now.

      The extent this racism still exists remains prevalent in the South, but is hidden through the use of code words, and the nod and wink. It is a despicable part of my region’s culture and I pray one day my grandchildren or great grandchildren won’t have to experience it. There was nothing honorable about serving in the Confederacy, and yes, I do know my history very well, partcularly that of the Civil War. There is no justification for the support of slavery, South or North, yet we allowed it to continue as long as we did, in a futile attempt to prevent dis-union by peaceful means.

  5. It’s difficult to find educated people about this subject,
    but you sound like you know what you’re talking about! Thanks

    • I thank you, as a descendent of slaves ,your words mean it’s coming to an end.Better late than never.

    • Slavery in any form is ‘wrong’ by anyone.
      The one cause of slavery I almost never read about is of the ”African Blacks” who were ‘SLAVE TRADERS’ capturing and selling their ‘OWN PEOPLE’.
      They to were ‘wrong’ but it seems only the ‘White American’ slave owners are ever blamed for this tragedy. WHY is this??
      Please in fairness remember to also blame the ”African Black Slave Traders” equally for their part.
      Your failure to do so leaves me slightly giving less credence to the veracity of your dialogues…

      P.S. I was or my ancestors were ever involved in any of the ‘Slave business.’

      Thank you.

  6. My great great grandfather was Robert W. Baylor of The Baylor Light Horse, Co.B, Twelfth Va. Cavalry,

  7. Andrew Jackson Roberts was the 1st Sergeant of the Flat River Guards, Company B of the 6th North Carolina Regiment; his youngest brother David was also a Sergeant in this company. Their unit arrived from the Valley among Joe Johnston’s troops; David Roberts was wounded severely in the thigh and later died of that wound. (Initial reports back to Orange County, NC erroneously reported that Andrew was the Roberts brother so wounded.) A.J. accompanied his unit into quarters at Camp Fisher, from where he was discharged in October 1861 and returned home – his wife had just died of complications from childbirth, and his baby brother David had died (as related above), leaving A.J. the last survivor of 5 brothers and now charged with the care of his parents and spinster sister as well as his own young children. In later years, his descendents were not aware that A.J. had ever served in Confederate troops (other than later Home Guard service) – probably an indication of how profoundly the events of 1861 had affected him. (I used surviving documents to confirm my great-grandfather’s CSA service, which was news to the youngest child of the baby born in 1861.)

    • I would like to know more about your Andrew Jackson Roberts. I am from Roberts family in North Carolina but can find no evidence any served in the war. I have other’s who served in the 45th NC Company F ; Company A, North Carolina 1st Infantry Regiment; and 46th Regiment, North Carolina Infantry Company G.

  8. My gg uncle Thomas R. Sangster, age 24, was killed at Blackburn’s Ford 3 days prior. The Sangster farm was less than 3 miles from Manassas.

  9. Mr Brother-in-law’s Great Grand Uncle John Nicholas Tucker with Camden Rifles, Mississippi was killed at Bull Run. John Nicholas was a Flag bearer. He was shot & died several days later on 14 August 1891. He is buried in Manassas VA. His father traveled to Virginia, but did not make it before John died. The blood stained flag & silk handkerchief was returned after the war to his mother.

  10. My 3rd Great Uncle Ludwell James Mosher Of the First Minnesota Volunteers was one of the first to enlist April 16, 1861, Company G., under Lewis McKune. Fought at Bull Run July 21, 1861 were his Capt. was killed.He served in all the battles that his Company participated in which included the second battle of Bull Run. Lastly, on July 2 he was wounded at Gettysburg with the brave men of the First Minnesota Volunteers who saved the battle by charging at the Alabama line in order to close a hole in the Union line. He was crippled in one arm and leg. He moved to Iowa after the war then later to Kansas. He died in 1911.

  11. My great grandfather fought in the Civil War, therefore I have done a lot of research on it. Unlike most believe, the war was NOT about slavery. There were slaves in the North, although they try to cover it up. Please research this war and don’t let political correctness form your opinion on it. Some, who would hide the real problem, say that it was to free the slaves. Those same people had slaves in their own states! They don’t reveal that little faux pa in their explanations. The war was over state’s rights as outlined in the Constitution. The government was infringing upon the rights of the southern states. Prior to the Civil war the country was referred to as a plural such as “the United States are”, but after the Civil war it was referred to as a singular, such as “the United States is.” Prior to the Civil war each state was an entity to itself, after the war each state is a part of the whole, which was not intended in the beginning. Hence the violation of states’ rights and the Civil War.

    • The notion, slavery was the principal cause of the Civil War, remains revisionist history, perhaps a sop to current political correctness.

      Neither Abraham Lincoln, nor Jefferson Davis, mentioned slavery in their first inaugural addresses. Lincoln, however, did mention preservation of the union.

      The immediate cause of the Civil War was the firing on Fort Sumpter; the underlying conflict was over the right to secede (“States’ Rights”). Abolitionist sentiments existed in the north, but Lincoln only pivoted away from preserving the Union to abolishing slavery in mid-war. Slavery was not outlawed in the United States until the ratification of the 13th Amendment to the Constitution in December, 1865, after Lincoln was dead and the Civil War over.

      Slavery was legal in the United States from 1776 through 1865. The Emancipation Proclamation, effective in January, 1863, applied only to the slaves in the Confederate states, except in territory under Union occupation. All the counties of West Virginia were exempted, by name, in the document.

      The Union states of Maryland, Delaware, Missouri, and Kentucky remained slave states after the war began. West Virginia was admitted to the Union as a slave state in 1863.

      Slavery was an abysmal institution; however–the United States countenanced slavery after the Confederacy was defeated. Scape-goating the Confederacy alone for slavery may be a result of historical ignorance.

    • That is revisionist history, at its worst. Read the State of Texas’ declaration of secession. It was as plain as the nose on your face that secession was committed for the sole purpose of continuing and extending the use of slavery throughout the remaining continental USA.

      If you think was a state’s right to hold slaves, you are mistaken. The institution was allowed to continue in the existing slave states In order to get the Constitution passed amongst the states of that the time, but several of the delegates that helped write the Constitution predicted slavery’s eventual demise, and that indeed it would take a war to end it. The efforts to reduce its spread to the new territories started almost immediately after the Constitution was passed and the USA formed.

      Slavery may have been abolished first in the Confederate South through the E.P., but it was abolished through the 13th Amendment to the Constitution after the end of the war in all states. If you knew the legal history behind the E.P. and its limitations as it applied to slave states still within the Union, you’d know why it Lincoln pushed through the passing of the 13th amendment before he was murdered. Ratification by a majority of the states, did not occur until Dec 6th 1865. Georgia, one of the states of the Confederacy was the state that tipped the scales in the ratification of that Amendment.

    • That in deed was the issue, however the institution of slavery was wrong and would have destroy this country in the long run. The Civil War was a case of good men standing up and stopping bad men from doing dad things. Peace !!

    • Actually the war was about State’s rights, afterward it was made into a war over slavery.

    • Sharon, you are absolutely right in your research. It was about states rights and only became about slavery when Lincoln made his speech , “The Emancipation Proclamation”. England had been approached to back the Confederacy and England did not believe in slavery…thus England did not back the Confederacy. I hate anything concerning slavery for any reason but I do believe that the most people in the South that held slaves were the plantation owners and not the regular Joe. My gg grandfather was basically kidnapped and forced to join. He died from sickness from being in a federal prison.
      He had a wife and three young children, the youngest under a year old. Just wish that people would research other than the books that the Union side wrote. The winners always write the books.

  12. There is an excellent article entitled “Why do some believe myths about the Confederacy?” By James W. Loewen.
    Special to the Washington Post.
    The long version of this very interesting article can be found at denverpost.com/opinion.

    It begins: “History is the polemics of the victor, William F. Buckley allegedly said. Not so in the United States, at least not regarding the Civil War. As soon as the Confederates laid down their arms, some picked up their pens and began to distort what they had done and why.”

    It’s a very interesting read.

  13. The state’s rights issue was not about slavery. It was about the individual states’ sovereignty which the federal government was trying to interfere with. It went a lot further than slavery. Slavery was a side issue created by the north, who also held slaves.

    • I found that “Battle Cry of Freedom” by James McPherson, which won the Pulitzer Prize, provided a fairly balanced account of the causes of the Civil War.

    • The North wanted to collect tarrif’s on the Tobacco and Cotton shipped to Europe, and the South wanted no part of it. I had family on both sides, one was “Little drummer boy of Shiloh”, that’s what happens when families came here in 1620 (Mayflower) and 1685, French settlers in Long Island. The whole truth is that most had provided freedom and means to support themselves and all slave owners were NOT WHITE, the largest holder was black and there were slaves in the North as well. I live less than 15 miles from Bull Run, and every once in a while a new body is found, both north and South, this was all woods and many were picked off by snipers and buried where the fell. Was slavery bad, Oh Yes! but let us remember it was other black men who kidnapped these people, sold them to the Dutch and they were bought to help with farms, plantations and even in Northern factories

    • Well said

  14. Check out the book “The War That Forged a Nation: Why the Civil War Still Matters.” You can buy it at Amazon.com. The author is a professor of history, with an interest in the Civil war. He does not have a dog in the fight, he is just interested in the reasons why the Civil war is still so relevant today. He doesn’t take sides. He has done a lot of research into the issue. I would suggest reading it.

  15. Who sold the concept of slavery to the United States?

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  18. In reply to Mr. Thornton’s replies, it is too bad that your are so ashamed of your Southern Confederate History. The Confederates were fighting a freedom-hating North run by a bunch of crazed “Radical Republicans.” I am extremely proud of my Confederate ancestors, as well as my American Revolutionary War veteran ancestors, who shared many of the same views & reasons for fighting tyranny.

    Please familiarize yourself with the proposed Corwin Amendment sponsored by U.S. Rep. Corwin and then U.S. Sen. Seward and promoted and endorsed by Lincoln before the war started. It would have guaranteed and protected the existence and practice of slavery FOREVER in all areas that it then existed, if the then seceded 7 states would agree to return. A provision of this also plainly stated that this amendment could NEVER be rescinded once in place. The Southern states rejected it. If they were only interested in protecting slavery, why would they not accept this as it made slavery protected as long as the nation existed? Additionally, there was a resolution passed by the U.S. Congress in 1861 that specifically declared that the Union was fighting the war for the specific purpose to preserve the Union and not to abolish slavery. Also, ask him why both Lincoln’s wife and Gen. Grant did not free their owned slaves until well after the war was over and the 13th Amendment that did free the slaves took effect in December 1865?

    The Union revised our history to fit their agenda, and unfortunately too few people know the truth.

    • Remarkable the number of people in our country still deluded by the fiction that the Civil War was fought over “States Rights”. I suppose it goes along with the present libertarian narrative of “Federal government is bad, State government is a little better”. Same sort of anarchical nonsense spewed in this country since the 1890s up to after WWI.

      Get over yourselves. We enslaved people based upon their race, the fact they looked so different from the rest of the population at the time, and based upon PERCEIVED economic need.

      It matters not who brought it to this country. It is a blot of dishonor on the country as a whole, not just the South, because we continued to tolerate (and yes, even nurture) the ideas that came out of slavery, even after it was abolished. That black people are little better than animals, sub-human. That they were too “uppity” for their own good and had to be smacked down periodically with public hangings, sanctioned and unsanctioned. It went on for more than 100 years after the war in the South and the North, and it is only recently that we’ve been making any attempt to integrate those of African ancestry into full members of our society.

      Go ahead and continue with your revisionist attempts. The truth cannot be denied. We enslaved a people for centuries and we still continue to deny our complicity in the perpetuation of the institution that came from it.

      You wonder why we are seeing all the demonstrations and rioting these past several months? This is why: We continue to deny what our ancestors did, and too many of us continue to support the narrative that black people are inferior to the rest of the population. The rest of us just want to be left alone and be allowed to forget. Face up to it. Reconcile and repair the damage we have done. Only then will we be fully United.

    • Exactly! But one can’t get the doubters to read up on the real history. They believe the revised history that they have been spoon fed in schools. People have been duped for generations. It’s unfortunate that they aren’t interested in the truth enough to check it out for themselves. The Civil war was NEVER about slavery! It became about slavery so that they could get the slaves to fight and die for the Union side! The government has been taxing us to pay the descendants of the slaves just enough so that the blacks will remain in poverty and the democrats can blame it on the south. But now it has become black hatred toward anyone who is white!

    • There has been revisionist history and it still persists. Thank you for your incisive statements.

    • Thank you Mr. King, well said!
      Too many people are quick to talk when all they know is revisionist history. Of course the North white washed their part, they could get away with it because they overpowered and won the war. That is always the legacy of any war ever fought on any soil.

    • To James Thornton: You sound extremely bitter and seem also to be very guilt ridden. I’m sorry for that, you must’ve had a difficult childhood seeing the winks and hearing the code words. I grew up in the south in the 1960s on military bases. We were sheltered from much of the racial strife. In the 70s I lived both north and south, moving to Georgia and attending college here in the later 70s-early 80s. I come from a background where all men were created equal, we are all Americans, black-white-red-brown, it doesn’t matter. I’m 54 years old and live in a diverse suburb in Atlanta, work in Atlanta with people of all races. All this to say, I have no guilt. I did not participate. Your comments are filled with rage and it even sounds like you might be a paid democratic operative trying to stir up racial tensions online in support of the recent race rioting and activism around the country perpetrated by Muslim and Marxist groups who want to stir up America so the current administration can force the huge changes needed to complete his legacy of tearing us apart once again. Good luck with all of your rage. Perhaps your local community college would employ you as a professor of history and you could pass some of that down to our kids?

  19. I had more than 2 dozen relatives who fought for the confederacy mostly from Ga. a few from N. C. + direct descendant of at least 2 more…ALL but possibly 1 owned no slaves—generally poor farmers…I would submit that this like most of our U. S.wars other than WW II were rich men’s wars but poor men’s battles….

  20. Gentlemen and Ms. Henry and others who contributed: A typical vice of today’s thinking is BLAME. So to start – let’s blame the Dutch for ‘shining the light on the benefits of slavery’. Next- let’s blame those who ‘had their sight opened’ to the notion. Regardless of initial offenders and propagators of the despicable practice, world history is rife with slavery from as far back as humans have felt superior to other humans. We in the USA are just recent players and the age old diametrically opposed opinions, based on our ancestors choices are irrelevant. They are all dead; they made choices based upon their current events and practices of their time, albeit only a century ago. Truly, racism exist openly today in the USA. We need to continue to seek the balance of timely coexistence and let the dead have their resting time. I have learned a great amount from all the replies on this site. Thank you all for your emotional opinions and honestly held beliefs.

    • I had three paternal uncles who fought in WW2. Two in the Air Force, and one in the Army. My dad was in the Army stationed in the Philippine Islands and was discharged a short while before the war was declared.

    • I am not making excuses for anything. Just do some independent research. Someone asked me about the beginnings of slavery and off hand the only reference I saw what that the Dutch brought over the first slaves! So don’t be so heady and high minded. I’d estimate that you haven’t researched the Civil War as much as I have, and I continue to research it. Slaves were not treated badly by all of the owners. The worst part of being a slave is not having an independent will to do whatever one wants. (But if you think about it, we are all owned or controlled, in one way or another, by something or someone.) The pre-Civil war era was not the only time that there was slavery. Slavery goes back to the beginning of history. It has always been a part of history. The Hebrew people are one good example, they were enslaved by Egypt for centuries until Moses, with the guidance of the All Mighty, led them out of Egypt.
      The Africans were not the first slaves and there is slavery in the world today. Today there are women sex slaves, literally owned by men in some European countries. If you hate slavery so much, maybe you should get involved with freeing those women, but I’m sure you wouldn’t care about that.

  21. We could go on forever debating the states right/slavery issue. Make no mistake, neither side was an innocent in the WBTS. Politicians and the rich and powerful manipulated to suit themselves and the sons and grandsons of those honored Revolutionary War rebels felt it their duty to once again try to get this “democracy” thing going right. As Tim Green above stated, most of the ones doing the fighting were doing so for honor to their Country, BOTH SIDES.

    Let’s talk relevance to today. The way I see it, those same politicians and rich and powerful people are STILL manipulating our government to suit their own needs and as long as we are fighting among ourselves over “a flag” they can slip anything they want past us.

    Our Congress does not have the people of the US in mind when they vote and make laws. They have themselves in mind. They have a built-in raise to their salary that is automatic unless they vote NOT to take it (joke- who’s going to do that!). They make laws for us the general public to follow but they don’t have to follow them. They don’t pay into Social Security because they have their own retirement system (salary for life). They have their own health care (Obamacare not good enough?); they have all kinds of “perks” and “gratuities” that come with the job that they don’t have to pay for and the list goes on and on. That is why they can’t balance the budget and our country keeps getting deeper and deeper in debt.

    Lobbyist and special interest groups determine which laws get passed by “greasing the palms” of the Congressmen. Where does all that money go? Makes you want to go HUMMMMM!

    Like I said, as long as we continue to fight among ourselves. loot and burn our own cities and disrespect each other they sit up there in their marble tower and laugh at us for being SO PATRIOTIC and they continue the destruction of our country.

    Now, regarding the flag issue. I am a Southerner and am proud of my Confederate heritage. I have documented at least 16 ancestors that fought for the Confederacy and none of them, that I know of, owned slaves. It was a terrible war for both sides and many lives were lost. Whatever the war was about or not about is not relevant today. What IS relevant is to remember the Veterans that fought.

    Confederates were fathers, sons, husbands and brothers of people left at home. Many Confederates were either buried in unmarked mass graves or left to deteriorate and were never buried. The Memorials on city squares, court house lawns and parks were put there by those surviving families (paid for without government assistance) that were trying to put their lives back together during the aftermath. They were mourning tremendous loss with nowhere to mourn and lay wreaths in honor of their dead.

    The Confederate flags flying over these monuments are in remembrance of the dead, not an attempt to re-kindle the war. Please help to calm the present situation instead of continuing to stir “stink”. Let the division stop, honor the men on both sides that fought and move on to the real problems in our Country, our politicians that are pulling the wool over our eyes.

    “It is not for the War we continue the fight,
    It is for the right to honor our dead that we contend.”

    • Artie, you hit the ‘nail on the head”. We are in trouble with all of the discontent in our nation. It will not change until the “powers that be” honor our laws AND STOP the greed and power agendas that our elected officials have. I always think of the Native Americans when all of this anger goes on by burning, looting, killing each other. The Native Americans got the big snow job when they believed the government was going to protect their rights. They could use a little help but they remain quiet . Everything goes to the squeaky wheels.
      I enjoyed your post.

    • Thanks Anna. I keep asking how we can make the Congressmen accountable to the people they are suppose to be working for. Nobody seems to know the answer. They make the rules that we have to go by but who keeps them honest and on task for us. They even came up with this electoral college thing so they could sway our very votes to suit them. The electoral college determines the race, our votes don’t because they don’t have to vote the way our votes are cast, they can vote any way they wish to sway the votes. THOS HAS TO STOP!!!

    • I see us all as slaves to something in this day and time! Sad situation we find ourselves in…instead of pulling together we are pulling further apart! Very sad! Very well said sir! We should “let it go”! Get on with life! Quit playing the blame game. God bless us all! 🙂

    • Yes! Well said! Thank you for your post. I’m sure some won’t appreciate it because they live in their own world, but the rest of us who realize what is going on appreciate what you said.

    • Thank you. Well said!

    • I think I can figure out where all of the money goes, and I’m sure you can, too.

    • What so many forget, there were many Scots,and Irish sent here as Indentured servants, a nice word for slavery, while many were freed after paying their debt off, there were many unscrup. owners who kept adding charges so as not to free them, One of those from Scotland was gr/ grandfather to our President Monroe, since I am also from this Scottish Clan, I know his grandfather left the north and moved to Virginia and James Monroe was a slave holder, on my french side I saw the wills and where they freed the slaves on their death, although many stayed and worked for wages. Some owners were good people and took very good care the stories like “Uncle Tom’s Cabin” are mor fiction than truth. In reality would you beat your plow horse until it fell, or would you curry and comb it, give it good oats?? Same would apply to the field workers and yes most were illeterate so their stores were only passed down by mouth and like anything else it was embellished or items of truth deleted. I knew the granddaughter of a slave, they had very rich property, in Virginia, when I saw her son later I found out that she had been robbed of the land, my late husband tried to get them help, but the papers were all legal and they didn’t have the money needed to persue a case against a huge company and the Company was from the North

  22. I appreciate everyone’s insightful comments and opinions. My own ancestors who fought for the CSA were descended from settlers who came to the South pre-RW for opportunity. During the CW era, they were simple farmers who tended their small farms themselves with the help of paid day laborers, not slaves. Contrary to common belief, wealthy slave owners were NOT the majority in the Confederacy, but were ordinary people just like you and me. They were called and served out of honor and duty. I am proud of that heritage. In history books, the winner gets to write it and the loser defends, but in truth, there are many sides to every war. If we are ever to make a positive difference for future generations, it would behoove every one of us to try to keep an open mind, listen and learn from all historical perspectives.

    • Exactly! I don’t appreciate those who want to fight the Civil war all over again, and I especially don’t appreciate people making statements that are inflammatory. Some of us have studied the Civil War for years and have a good grasp of what caused it and how the war was fought. Those of us who are descendants of the men who fought in the CSA are every bit as proud of them as those whose ancestors fought on the other side. They are no better than we are, and we are not better than them. Let us not fight that war again.

    • Exactly. All fought and all deserve to be remembered and honored.

    • Well said, Sharon. What we need to be doing instead of fighting among ourselves is looking at Congress and what they are doing. In their zeal to cleanse this Nation of everything Confederate with the North and the Blacks championing them, we better be watching what they are slipping through as riders on these laws. I will bet dollars to do-nuts they are getting by with things a lot more atrocious than a flag waving over a memorial to the dead!

  23. My great grandfather, Joshua Pitchfork Stephens, of Cobb County, GA, served in the Seventh Georgia Infantry which was engaged at the first battle of Bull Run. He was wounded in that battle but later recovered in time to fight at Gettysburg where he served with the Third Georgia Sharpshooters connected with the Phillips Georgia Legion under Brig. Gen. William T. Wofford. Stephens was captured around sundown on the second day of the Battle of Gettysburg and spent the remainder of the war in prison at Ft. Delaware. He returned to Cobb County, GA where he died in 1912.

    • You would most likely really appreciate the book “Gettysburg” which is a historical novel of the battle. It was just recently released. Written by Newt Gingrich and someone else whose name escapes me at the moment. I think you could probably order it through Amazon.com. It is a historically correct novel about the battle.

    • My great grand uncle died from small pox in an northern prison camp in the Civil war. He is buried there, rather than sending his body home after the war. I doubt that his wife ever knew what happened to him. The only way I knew where he was buried and what happened to him was because I have worked on Ancestry.com for about 4 years.

    • John, from Cobb County, Georgia, I’d like to honor your ancestor. Is he buried here? I’m located in west Cobb, near Kennesaw Mountain. I had many relatives fight in the war, all from the north: Indiana, Iowa and New York. Alva Clarke was a drummer boy who enlisted at 16 with his older brothers in Indiana. He was taken prisoner and held in Libby Prison in Richmond where he was taken ill. Finally released, after a month long journey, he died three days after returning home to Crown Point, IN. He was one of two of my ancestors who were in Libby Prison. Another great, great grandfather was with the72nd Indiana Lightning Brigade. Joel House Andrews’ unit actually skirmished in what is today my backyard at the foot of Lost Mountain. When I discovered this, you can imagine how amazed…do you think it was coincidence we bought this particular house? 🙂

  24. Slavery has been ongoing for millennia. Don’t believe me? Try reading the Old Testament of the Bible. It had nothing to do with the color of ones skin but about who they were as a people and who were the reigning race(s) in their time.
    From reading all the input on this subject of whether the Civil War was about States Rights or Slavery I find pieces of truth strune throughout. Why are we stirring the pot over our past and the transgressions we may or may not have committed? People, it is our HISTORY. Story of how we got to where we are today. Maybe instead of calling it HIStory we should call it WHOSEstory as it changes from each and every onenes perspective or motive for not letting our past heal.
    A wound cannot heal if you keep picking at the scab/scar that it has left. A scab because it is still raw and a scar to remind us of how far we have come.

    • IMO the people from the north apparently don’t read their bibles. The ones who do still don’t like southerners and Texans. I have had the experience of going to a church in Chicago and when I attempted to talk to the preacher he looked at me as if I was Satan. So, I am familiar what discrimination looks like, and it isn’t only in the south. I have traveled to almost every state in the union and the north, by far, exhibits more contempt toward southerners and Texans than visa-versa.
      They have a lot of nerve calling us bigots!

    • It’s interesting that we rarely speak of the transgressions of Hitler, Stalin, Mussolini,
      etc., but we as a nation can’t get the Civil war out of our craws. Probably because we were neighbors, but we couldn’t get along or work out our differences. The same applies to the north and south today. We still can’t get along as neighbors.

    • Best message yet Gerry. Study history and the more you learn, the more you will understand. We can’t put today’s politically correct or activist political standards upon the people of the past, though we can learn and do better. Some people want to stir up trouble. It’s usually Alisky-ites trying to score some political points or propagandize. I’m surprised to find them here at Fold 3.

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  26. I agree – BTW I believe it was the fear of abolition that sparked the states rights debates. While we are at it don’t forget, conquerors have enslaved their enemies since the first time cave men fought over a cave. No country or region is blameless nor solely to blame. Hatred and prejudice grow out of fear and ignorance and we can only hope that as we become more diverse and biracial as a nation we will become more tolerant of differences – may familiarity breed understanding rather than contempt.

    • Being from Texas, not considered deep south, it is considered to be the west, I find when I have gone to northern states that they automatically didn’t like me. The minute I spoke my accent was considered to be southern. I was born, raised and live in Texas, and when I have traveled to northern states, and they hear me speak, one would think they just smelled something bad. I used to have no animosity toward them, but after traveling there, and being treated as if I am the devil himself, I don’t care for them. They think they are better than us. I’d rather stay where the people are helpful and friendly, even to those from the north.

  27. Sharon & Jason….Thank you for your measured responses and research ideas

    The victor writes the history (to their own posterity).

  28. Forty-four members of my ancestral family served with the Confederate Army. Not one of them “owned” any slaves. I should think that they knew what the struggle was all about.

  29. General Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson was my great, great, great grandfather John Jay Jackson’s 2nd cousin–so he’s my 2nd cousin, 5 times removed. Young Tom actually looked upon John Jay, a general in the Virginia militia (Parkersburg, WVa, soon after the secession of VA in 1861) as a father figure. He was the one who encouraged Tom to apply to West Point.

    • Folks in general may not know that although Thomas Jackson owned a few house slaves, he believed in the Union and would have fought for the Union had Virginia not seceded. Robert E. Lee would have done the same. Jackson also broke the law by teaching slaves how to read because he believed everyone had the right to be able to read the Bible. Had slavery been abolished in Virginia or nationwide, he would have freed his slaves immediately and likely hoped to have hired them as free persons.

    • You should follow any statues of Stonewall as you may be the only “next of kin” that could save it. They are going crazier and crazier by the minute. They might take the Dixie from the rest of the world but they will never take the Dixie from me. “It is not for the War that I continue the fight… it is for the right to honor my dead that I contend.”

  30. I had relatives on both sides of the war. I love, honor, and respect each. They fought, died, became disabled and continued to try and survive. That’s all that can be asked of anyone. Don’t own a slave, never owned one, would never want to own one no matter what color. History is history. Today is yesterday’s promise of the future, lets all work to make the best of it. We should all be able to respect our ancestors, they fought for us.

    • Thank you. Well said.

    • I really respect what you wrote. I had a great grandfather who was seriously wounded at the 2nd battle of Bull Run, and my father fought in world war ll, and Korea. My father never blamed or hated anyone for it. He did what his country asked of him like so many other men did throughout history. We are not perfect. We made our mistakes, but because of these men on both sides who fought bravely or died for what they believed in only made our country stronger. America still is one of the only countries were anything is possible, and hopefully we can see that we are all equal. We are all Americans.

  31. My ancestors fought for the independence of the Confederacy. The most tragic mistake made early in the war was that the Confederate army didn’t take Washington and try to win the war by destroying the North early on. President Davis was in favor of a war of attrition hoping that the North would tire of the war and our independence would be won without having to invade the North. This was a terrible mistake due to the fact that the enemy had more manufacturing and especially more manpower due to a potato famine going on in Ireland. For every yankee killed or taken prisoner, two Europeans were arriving in New York by boat. The only way to win would have been to beat them right at the start of hostilities.

  32. My gg Grandfather Gotthelf Wenzel was wounded at Blackburn’s Ford on July 18, 1861 while serving for the 2nd Wisconsin Infantry.

  33. My Grandfather Alfred R Fairhurst fought at the First Battle of Bull Run. We visited the site years ago, amazing history in this area. We were fortunate to have a photo taken by GGF, and able to “replicate” the bridge where original pic taken… How cool is this??? Grateful for the history that was honored and preserved for all of us to enjoy… Thank You…

  34. Capture Washington and proceed to destroy the North as Robert Wayne suggests reminds me of Japanese thinking about Pearl Harbor. It was fruitless to think the North could have been destroyed. Just as fruitless as the Pearl Harbor attack would destroy America.
    As an aviator from New Jersey during the Big One I was charmed by the southern Belles. They had sport saying “The South shall rise again.” as they twisted us around their little finger. We loved it.
    Let’s look at the bright side. In this next election we have an opportunity to unite a divided nation by getting rid of the “carpet bagger congress”
    As someone said above, “the entrenched politicians are the real enemy.”
    With a new honest bred…”America will rise again!”

  35. My great grandfather, Capt. William Fowle, of Co. H, 17th VA Infantry led the first skirmish line across Blackburn’s Ford on the Centreville Road on the first day of the battle. His father, Major William Fowle of the Commissary Dept. of the Army of Norther Virginia had to report to Richmond and General Beauregard that there were not sufficient supplies or rations for the CSA to follow the retreat of the Union forces to Washington and take Washington. He was releived of his position and there was a quick CSA congress investigation that proved he was correct.
    c

  36. My g-g grandfather (Daniel A. Boggs) fought in this battle as a part of the 11th Virginia Infantry, Company K. If anyone has any photos of this unit, I would love to see them.

  37. This will probably be my last post on this blog as I think we have just about covered everything. I have documented at least 20 Confederates from my Dad’s side alone that fought for the Confederacy. I just want to speak of 3 of them if I may. One has that hated “Deserted” word on his service record. He had 4 brothers that he was fighting along side and he had a family at home. We don’t know what was going on with them and he fought for a long time before he left and went home. I don’t condemn him or think less of him than the other 4 brothers. They may even have drawn straws to see which brother went back to take care of all their families.

    The second I would speak of was wounded and captured at Port Hudson. He was taken to a Federal hospital in New Orleans where he died and was buried in Cypress Grove Cemetery #2. Why is that cemetery no longer in existence? They dug up the Yankees, moved them to another cemetery, left the Confederates there and paved Canal Street right over them. Not even a marker or any other respect for the dead in a cemetery.

    The 3rd is the one I have cried over the most. We have 18 letters from the brother of my great-great grandmother that follows him from Ft. Morgan, near Mobile, AL all the way to Yorktown, VA. Not once in his letters does he speak of slaves. He only speaks of his duty to country and how much he misses his home and family. I have transcribed and researched the people, events and places in his letters and compiled them into a small book. Imagine my horror when I visited Sharpsburg, MD and found that he, along with the other Confederates that lost their lives that day, lay on the ground where they fell for over a YEAR before what remains were left were scooped up and thrown into a mass grave like so much garbage.

    Those Confederate markers at Sharpsburg are my only connection with this ancestor as his resting place is known only to God. It is my hope that we can all take a step back and allow those of us who had ancestors involved on both sides to honor them.

    “It is not for the War that I continue the fight… it is for the RIGHT to honor my dead that I contend.”

    • @Artie, thank you for your eloquently expressed comments. Well said. I too have many ancestors who fought for the Confederate cause, including a young private (one of five brothers, all of whom served) who died at Petersburg, VA and is buried in a mass grave. Indeed, it is for the right to honor our dead that we contend.

    • That has become my motto

  38. We have been reading your posts this morning. I am a member of the SVC (Sons of Confederate Veterans) and have 5 direct decendents that fought for the South. From all of my reading and study, the war was not fought over slavery but was fought over high taxation from those in Washington that wanted to tax the cotton that was grown in the South and then tax it again on the exports. That was also involved as ‘State’s Rights’… The flag is not a symbol of ‘hate’ to me… it is a symbol of ‘Remembrance’ for those in my ancestors who fought and died for what they believed. A lot of the history books do not tell this side of the story as some on here have referred to.

    • It was “taxation without representation” which happened to have been the exact same thing that the U.S. fought for liberty from England, but it wasn’t allowed that the people being overtaxed from the south couldn’t get justice from the rulers of the North. That is interesting, isn’t it?

  39. My 3rd great grandfather James W. Lowe was at 1st and 2nd Manassas with the 8th Virginia Infantry

  40. i had 2 great great uncles from illinois, one fought for the south one for the north, our ancestry was german dutch and native american,

  41. At the risk of being a bit off topic, I would still like to know the answer to this question.
    I understand that after South Carolina seceded, she requested that the Union withdraw their military installations from her land. I understand that Lincoln took 5 months to answer, and when he did it was to attempt a resupply of Ft. Sumter by ship. This I think occasioned the first shots fired, and they were by South Carolina to drive the supply ships off.
    I cannot find any bar to a state seceding in 1860. It seems that had the Constitution contained the phrase “once you join the Union, you can never leave” then I doubt any state would have signed the Constitution.
    So if secession was not dis-allowed, on what authority did Lincoln invade South Carolina?

    • Very interesting question, and you are correct that the States signing the Constitution would never have signed it if they thought they were giving up sovereignty (States Rights). This is the reason for the electoral college as the less populace States and Agrarian States (read the South) feared they would be out voted with any other formula.
      The reason that the North disregarded the right of a State to succeed is because they could not afford to loose the revenues and because the North knew that it could prevail in combat (they just did not think it would happen or that it would be so long and bloody). Remember that at the first battle of Bull Run there were folks from Washington picnicking while watching a battle that they thought would be a walk in the park.

    • I’ve read a lot in the last couple of weeks and this statement is one of the best. Well said!

    • Excellent question.

    • Benicio, you are like so many people in the country today. You’ve only read revisionist history and have never read the real history, and you make fun of people who have. You are ignorant and arrogant and you curse those of us who aren’t. You will pay for your arrogance, not by anything that I, or others like me will do, but from those whom you reverence. The day will soon come that you will wish you had listened to how your country can turn on you in a heartbeat but you’ll have nowhere to go and no one to blame but yourself. The Holocaust is a perfect example. They didn’t believe that Hitler would turn on them either, but it happened and many millions of not only Jews, but others also, were gassed in prison camps, if they didn’t stave or freeze to death first.
      One should never fully trust their commander in chief because one never knows what is going on behind the scenes, but there are always hints that leak out of their mouths. The unequivocal arrogance of the man in the White House makes many of us uneasy. He thinks he is the Emperor, not the President. He thinks he can do anything with the swipe of a pen, but that is NOT the way this country is set up. Have you ever read the Preamble to the Constitution? Have you read the Constitution? Have you ever read history books? I sincerely doubt that you have, because your hatred for those of us who are leery of those in the White House is unjustified.
      Never forget: History ALWAYS repeats itself! Leaders always make the same errors in judgment! The little guys, like you and I, always pay the price for the arrogance of our leaders. Remember that, always. I get a sense that you aren’t old enough to realize what some of the rest of us know, or have experienced. I would guess that you are of the age of those who still believe everything your teachers told you. Opinions are like assholes, we all have one.

  42. What the South fought against and warned about has befallen the Republic. Cesspools like Detroit; a staggering number of black abortions; the collapse of black marriages; irreversible addiction to the ‘green’ cocaine doled out by the Federal plantation owners; and the rise of racist leader’s who eat the fat of the hog while young blacks eat the husks have polluted the very air we breath. My ancestors fought for North and South; and my Yankee ancestors were virulent racists even into the 21st century (originating in Ohio and Indiana). Take down all the Confederate flags and dig up all the Confederate Graves you want; the debachery and death will just keep on rolling our Republic towards extinction. Maybe ISIS is the modern day Assyrians; before Christ cleanses and again sanctifies our Republic.

    • Doing all you can to keep up with your virulently racist ancestors aren’tcha there, ‘Gregory Lee’ !

  43. “States’ Rights,” ‘taxes & tariffs,’ ‘revisionist history & political correctness.’ …Amazing how the Confederate apologists have hijacked this thread that asked only: “Did you have ancestors who served in the First Battle of Bull Run (Manassas)? Tell us about it!”

    What ‘Sharon Henry’ and other users here so loudly trumpet is the mythology of the “Lost Cause of the Confederacy,” (see Wikipedia article); it seems Ms. Henry’s so-called research never gets beyond material that supports her jaded viewpoint. Maybe it’s not your accent, Sharon, but your thoroughly outdated way of thinking that many Northerners sense in you. (It’s very telling that you’d even dare to reflect on what a wonderful and peaceful existence slaves must have had back then!)

    While Slavery was not the very reason Lincoln put out the call for volunteers to protect Washington, and preserve the Union, it was the REAL underlying cause that led the Southern states to secede in the first place — It was about States’ Rights for certain; the unfettered right to own, and keep slaves.

    Fact: The official declaration of causes of secession for Georgia, Mississippi, Texas, and South Carolina EXPLICITLY point to African Slavery as a central and specific tenet for their actions to separate from the Union (Google for transcripts). Read for yourself the words of Texas as it proclaims its primary intention of “maintaining and protecting the institution known as negro slavery.”

    • Yes, I have ancestors who fought on the side of the Confederacy, did any of yours fight in that war, or were yours still in some 3rd world European country? You exhibit so much arrogance in your soliloquy that it shows what the south was fighting. The people of the north were fighting the wealth of the south as much as anything else. People in the northern states would still love to suit up and fight it again because they are not any better off today than they were pre-civil war. The south is better off and we don’t have slaves today. Texas politicians don’t steal everything we make, because we see to it that they don’t. All I can say is: get the hatred out of your heart and maybe you’ll see that the people of the south are not anything like what you think we are. If you were to come here you’d be welcomed with a smile and a hand shake. Texans are always willing to help their neighbors, unless they behave like a Yankee ass, in which case they would be snubbed.
      I’ve been to many northern states, and I still haven’t found a friendly one in the bunch.

    • I’m arrogant, yet you’ll call Europe and its millenniums of history “third world.” LoL. You’re just reinforcing my contention that it’s your attitude that makes you so beloved to all those Northerns you’ve met.

      Yes, I had ancestors who fought in the war — lots of them. None at Bull Run, either time, that I know of.

    • Oviously, my prev. post was @’Sharon Henry’.

  44. And this whole bit about slavery being around since the beginning of Biblical/recorded history, or that Black Africans were enslaving and selling their own kind in African, or that the Dutch first brought slaves to America 300 years prior — that’s all a moot point, and provides no justification that African Slavery continue to run rampant in the South of 1860, or that the Confederate states would be willing to go to the extreme of splintering the nation, and starting a shooting war to maintain that morally outrageous ‘lifestyle.’ A writer once summed it up this way: “The South fought against something sacred (the Constitution) for the sake of something profane (slavery).”

    A great place to start some REAL historical research is a book (available on Amazon) that compiles a number of primary source accounts, like the original articles of secession above, called *The Confederate and Neo-Confederate Reader: The “Great Truth” about the “Lost Cause”* (ed: Loewen & Sebesta). Nothing like reading the tale told right from the horse’s mouth! There’s also an evenhanded, concise TIME magazine article that ran about four years ago, when the Sesquicentennial commemoration began (search: “150 Years After Fort Sumter: Why We’re Still Fighting the Civil War”)

    You want to heal this gaping wound that continues to affect our nation a century-and-a-half after over 600-thousand Americans lives were sacrificed to keep it all together? Start getting honest with yourselves about the reasons we still have racism, un-equal justice for African Americans, and the existence of the Klan. It ain’t about transgressions of the current administration; or the ills of Congress. It’s about entrenched culture that was allowed to carry forward from way back then.

    (Getting rid of that CSA battle flag flying with official sanction at so many Southern public venues — a blatant daily reminder of the events of 150-years ago — is a good way to start! Sorta poetic that South Carolina, the place that sparked it all, also sees fit to make amends, and bring it down. You want to keep it in the Confederate military cemeteries to honor your dead, Artie? That might be reasonable. How would you feel about the Germans openly flying the Nazi flag at their cemeteries, though?)

    • Well, why don’t you go visit one of those countries which still has slavery today and tell them what you said here. I’d be willing to bet that you wouldn’t ever be seen again, anywhere.

    • The term “third world” refers to their governments! Get rid of your hatred.

  45. Posted July 9, 2015 by Megyn Kelly, journalist, former attorney, and news pundit and political commentator on the Fox News Channel.

    Ladies and gentlemen, I submit that what we see happening in the United States today is an apt illustration of why the Confederate flag was raised in the first place. What we see materializing before our very eyes is tyranny: tyranny over the freedom of expression, tyranny over the freedom of association, tyranny over the freedom of speech, and tyranny over the freedom of conscience.

    In 1864, Confederate General Patrick Cleburne warned his fellow southerners of the historical consequences should the South lose their war for independence. He was truly a prophet. He said if the South lost, “It means that the history of this heroic struggle will be written by the enemy. That our youth will be trained by Northern school teachers; will learn from Northern school books their version of the war; will be impressed by all of the influences of History and Education to regard our gallant debt as traitors and our maimed veterans as fit subjects for derision.” No truer words were ever spoken.

    History revisionists flooded America’s public schools with Northern propaganda about the people who attempted to secede from the United States, characterizing them as racists, extremists, radicals, hatemongers, traitors, etc. You know, the same way that people in our federal government and news media attempt to characterize Christians, patriots, war veterans, constitutionalists, et al. today.

    Folks, please understand that the only people in 1861 who believed that states did NOT have the right to secede were Abraham Lincoln and his radical Republicans. To say that southern states did not have the right to secede from the United States is to say that the thirteen colonies did not have the right to secede from Great Britain. One cannot be right and the other wrong. If one is right, both are right. How can we celebrate our Declaration of Independence in 1776 and then turn around and condemn the Declaration of Independence of the Confederacy in 1861? Talk about hypocrisy!

    In fact, southern states were not the only states that talked about secession. After the southern states seceded, the State of Maryland fully intended to join them. In September of 1861, Lincoln sent federal troops to the State capital and seized the legislature by force in order to prevent them from voting. Federal provost marshals stood guard at the polls and arrested Democrats and anyone else who believed in secession. A special furlough was granted to Maryland troops so they could go home and vote against secession. Judges who tried to inquire into the phony elections were arrested and thrown into military prisons. There is your great “emancipator,” folks.

    And before the South seceded, several northern states had also threatened secession. Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island had threatened secession as far back as James Madison’s administration. In addition, the states of New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Delaware were threatening secession during the first half of the nineteenth century–long before the southern states even considered such a thing.

    People say constantly that Lincoln “saved” the Union. Lincoln didn’t save the Union; he subjugated the Union. There is a huge difference. A union that is not voluntary is not a union. Does a man have a right to force a woman to marry him or to force a woman to stay married to him? In the eyes of God, a union of husband and wife is far superior to a union of states. If God recognizes the right of husbands and wives to separate (and He does), to try and suggest that states do not have the right to lawfully (under Natural and divine right) separate is the most preposterous proposition imaginable.

    People say that Lincoln freed the slaves. Lincoln did NOT free a single slave. But what he did do was enslave free men. His so-called Emancipation Proclamation had NO AUTHORITY in the southern states, as they had separated into another country. Imagine a President today signing a proclamation to free folks in, say, China or Saudi Arabia. He would be laughed out of Washington. Lincoln had no authority over the Confederate States of America, and he knew it.

    Do you not find it interesting that Lincoln’s proclamation did NOT free a single slave in the United States, the country in which he DID have authority? That’s right. The Emancipation Proclamation deliberately ignored slavery in the North. Do you not realize that when Lincoln signed his proclamation, there were over 300,000 slaveholders who were fighting in the Union army? Check it out.

    One of those northern slaveholders was General (and later U.S. President) Ulysses S. Grant. In fact, he maintained possession of his slaves even after the War Between the States concluded. Recall that his counterpart, Confederate General Robert E. Lee, freed his slaves BEFORE hostilities between North and South ever broke out. When asked why he refused to free his slaves, Grant said: “Good help is hard to find these days.”

    The institution of slavery did not end until the 13th Amendment was ratified on December 6, 1865.
    Speaking of the 13th Amendment, did you know that Lincoln authored his own 13th Amendment? It is the only amendment to the Constitution ever proposed by a sitting U.S. President. Here is Lincoln’s proposed amendment: “No amendment shall be made to the Constitution which will authorize or give Congress the power to abolish or interfere within any state with the domestic institutions thereof, including that a person’s held to labor or service by laws of said State.”

    You read it right. Lincoln proposed an amendment to the U.S. Constitution PRESERVING the institution of slavery. This proposed amendment was written in March of 1861, a month BEFORE the shots were fired at Fort Sumter, South Carolina.

    The State of South Carolina was particularly incensed at the tariffs enacted in 1828 and 1832. The Tariff of 1828 was disdainfully called “The Tariff of Abominations” by the State of South Carolina. Accordingly, the South Carolina legislature declared that the tariffs of 1828 and 1832 were “unauthorized by the constitution of the United States.”

    Think, folks: why would the southern states secede from the Union over slavery when President Abraham Lincoln had offered an amendment to the Constitution guaranteeing the PRESERVATION of slavery? That makes no sense. If the issue was predominantly slavery, all the South needed to do was to go along with Lincoln; and his proposed 13th Amendment would have permanently preserved slavery among the southern (and northern) states. Does that sound like a body of people who were willing to lose hundreds of thousands of men on the battlefield over saving slavery? What nonsense!

    The problem was Lincoln wanted the southern states to pay the Union a 40% tariff on their exports. The South considered this outrageous and refused to pay. By the time hostilities broke out in 1861, the South was paying up to, and perhaps exceeding, 70% of the nation’s taxes. Before the war, the South was very prosperous and productive. And Washington, D.C., kept raising the taxes and tariffs on them. You know, the way Washington, D.C., keeps raising the taxes on prosperous American citizens today.

    This is much the same story of the way the colonies refused to pay the demanded tariffs of the British Crown–albeit the tariffs of the Crown were MUCH lower than those demanded by Lincoln. Lincoln’s proposed 13th Amendment was an attempt to entice the South into paying the tariffs by being willing to permanently ensconce the institution of slavery into the Constitution. AND THE SOUTH SAID NO!
    In addition, the Congressional Record of the United States forever obliterates the notion that the North fought the War Between the States over slavery. Read it for yourself. This resolution was passed unanimously in the U.S. Congress on July 23, 1861: “The War is waged by the government of the United States not in the spirit of conquest or subjugation, nor for the purpose of overthrowing or interfering with the rights or institutions of the states, but to defend and protect the Union.”
    What could be clearer? The U.S. Congress declared that the war against the South was NOT an attempt to overthrow or interfere with the “institutions” of the states, but to keep the Union intact (by force). The “institutions” implied most certainly included the institution of slavery.

    Hear it loudly and clearly: Lincoln’s war against the South had NOTHING to do with ending slavery–so said the U.S. Congress by unanimous resolution in 1861.
    Abraham Lincoln, himself, said it was NEVER his intention to end the institution of slavery. In a letter to Alexander Stevens, who later became the Vice President of the Confederacy, Lincoln wrote this: “Do the people of the South really entertain fears that a Republican administration would directly, or indirectly, interfere with their slaves, or with them, about their slaves? If they do, I wish to assure you, as once a friend, and still, I hope, not an enemy, that there is no cause for such fears. The South would be in no more danger in this respect than it was in the days of Washington.”

    Again, what could be clearer? Lincoln, himself, said the southern states had nothing to fear from him in regard to abolishing slavery.
    Hear Lincoln again: “If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it.” He also said: “I have no purpose, directly or indirectly, to interfere with the institution of slavery in the states where it exists. I believe I have no lawful right to do so and I have no inclination to do so.”

    The idea that the Confederate flag (actually, there were five of them) stood for racism, bigotry, hatred, and slavery is just so much hogwash. In fact, if one truly wants to discover who the racist was in 1861, just read the words of Mr. Lincoln.
    On August 14, 1862, Abraham Lincoln invited a group of black people to the White House. In his address to them, he told them of his plans to colonize them all back to Africa. Listen to what he told these folks: “Why should the people of your race be colonized and where? Why should they leave this country? This is, perhaps, the first question for proper consideration. You and we are different races. We have between us a broader difference than exists between almost any other two races. Whether it is right or wrong I need not discuss; but this physical difference is a great disadvantage to us both, as I think. Your race suffers very greatly, many of them, by living among us, while ours suffers from your presence. In a word, we suffer on each side. If this is admitted, it affords a reason, at least, why we should be separated. You here are freemen, I suppose? Perhaps you have been long free, or all your lives. Your race is suffering, in my judgment, the greatest wrong inflicted on any people. But even when you cease to be slaves, you are yet far removed from being placed on an equality with the white race. The aspiration of men is to enjoy equality with the best when free, but on this broad continent not a single man of your race is made the equal of a single man of our race.”

    Did you hear what Lincoln said? He said that black people would NEVER be equal with white people–even if they all obtained their freedom from slavery. If that isn’t a racist statement, I’ve never heard one.

    Lincoln’s statement above is not isolated. In Charleston, Illinois, in 1858, Lincoln said in a speech: “I am not, nor have ever been, in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races. I am not nor ever have been in favor of making voters or jurors of negroes, nor of qualifying them to hold office, nor to intermarry with white people; I will say in addition to this that there is a physical difference between the white and black races which I believe will forever forbid the two races from living together on social or political equality. And inasmuch as they cannot so live, while they do remain together there must be the position of superior and inferior, and I as much as any other man am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the white.”

    Ladies and gentlemen, in his own words, Abraham Lincoln declared himself to be a white supremacist. Why don’t our history books and news media tell the American people the truth about Lincoln and about the War Between the States?

    It’s simple: if people would study the meanings and history of the flag, symbols, and statues of the Confederacy and Confederate leaders, they might begin to awaken to the tyrannical policies of Washington, D.C., that precluded southern independence–policies that have only escalated since the defeat of the Confederacy–and they might have a notion to again resist.

    By the time Lincoln penned his Emancipation Proclamation, the war had been going on for two years without resolution. In fact, the North was losing the war. Even though the South was outmanned and out-equipped, the genius of the southern generals and fighting acumen of the southern men had put the northern armies on their heels. Many people in the North never saw the legitimacy of Lincoln’s war in the first place, and many of them actively campaigned against it. These people were affectionately called “Copperheads” by people in the South.
    I urge you to watch Ron Maxwell’s accurate depiction of those people in the North who favored the southern cause as depicted in his motion picture, “Copperhead.”

    For that matter, I consider his movie “Gods And Generals” to be the greatest “Civil War” movie ever made. It is the most accurate and fairest depiction of Confederate General Thomas Jonathan “Stonewall” Jackson ever produced. In my opinion, actor Stephen Lang should have received an Oscar for his performance as General Jackson. But, can you imagine?

    That’s another thing: the war fought from 1861 to 1865 was NOT a “civil war.” Civil war suggests two sides fighting for control of the same capital and country. The South didn’t want to take over Washington, D.C., no more than their forebears wanted to take over London. They wanted to separate from Washington, D.C., just as America’s Founding Fathers wanted to separate from Great Britain. The proper names for that war are either, “The War Between the States” or, “The War of Southern Independence,” or, more fittingly, “The War of Northern Aggression.”
    Had the South wanted to take over Washington, D.C., they could have done so with the very first battle of the “Civil War.” When Lincoln ordered federal troops to invade Virginia in the First Battle of Manassas (called the “First Battle)

    • Blah blah blah blah, Megyn Kelly, blah blah bah, revisionist history, blah blah blah, Lincoln subjugated the Union, blah blah blah, South Carolina incensed at the tariffs, blah blah blah, “Gods And Generals” greatest movie ever made (LOL), blah blah blah, “The War of Northern Aggression.”

      Wow, ‘Artie,’ why don’t you write a book?! Oh, you just did. Is that called a blog filibuster? Next time try copying and pasting what I’ve written above — you’ll accomplish the same sad thing.

      And the drums of war beat on…

    • Also, PROVE your claim that Grant owned slaves after the war.

      My sources indicate he only ever held ONE slave, and the man was given his freedom in 1859, well before the thought of war. His father-in-law owned slaves; not sure for how long, though, or if this is the source of your confusion.

    • Very well said!

    • “Filiblogster” ?? (Took me a while, but I got there…) 8P

    • While I’m at it, it might surprise you to know that Lincoln was not a Democrat.

      http://abesblogcabin.org/to-what-political-party-did-abraham-lincoln-belong

      You may look it up on as many websites as you want and you’ll come up with the same answer.

    • I think what apparently *will* surprise YOU to learn, @Sharon Henry, is that from this period forward, until probably the time of FDR, the policies and fundamentals of the political parties known as “Republicans” and “Democrats” were just about polar OPPOSITES of what they are now.

      The Southern conservative Dixiecrats of the 1860s were on par with the Southern conservative republicans of today, in terms of political philosophy.

      Come on, Sharon — with all your heavyweight research, surely you knew that, right?!

    • Benecio del Toro:
      I was beginning to despair. The deluded had taken over this thread, chanting their revisionist mantra that the South was the innocent victim of Northern Aggression. Neverminding the plethora of evidence to the contrary within the public documents of the former States of the Confederacy. Pointing everywhere but to themselves and their forebears as to the reason for continued health of racism in this country.

      I am a fourth generation Texan, content that most of my family’s history has been honorable for most of the thousand years I can trace my ancestry. The exception to that honorable behavior, was some of my family’s insistence on supporting the Peculiar Institution, and taking up arms in defense of it against against our duly elected government of that time. I made my opinions of that sedition clear on this thread and have been called pretty much everything but a traitor to my own race. I wait with bated breath the moment they trot that one out.

      Welcome, and give ’em hell! I don’t have the time or inclination to argue with tree stumps.

    • @James Thornton — Despite efforts over at least the last few years, there’s a hard-core faction that will continue to espouse the Lost Cause mentality, just as there are individuals who willingly deny the Holocaust (oftentimes one in the same).

      So many get confused about the root cause of the war being Slavery, because the Union did not initially go into it with the explicit purpose to *end* slavery. In fact, in order to preserve the Union — something Lincoln felt was his solemn, and honor-bound duty as president — he was okay with maintaining the status quo: keeping the practice of slavery as it was, but allowing it to expand no further into new territories.

      I wouldn’t take it too personally, regarding your own family history; they were people who did what they had to do within the context of their time, and place. The best way to deal with it today is by learning as much as possible about how things really fell into place, then tell the tale as a matter of fact, and not shame.

  46. I dare say that you have never read the bible, have you sir?

  47. I’m not even sure you’ve ever read the U.S. Constitution with the amendments either, nor any history books. You must have come up in the years in which the public schools only taught hatred toward those who live to the south of the Mason-Dixon line. Or is it something more that spurs the hatred in your heart and head? I would definitely say that it is the hatred that the north had for the south that is driving your comments, not anything said on this blog. It is unreasonable that you want southerners and Texans to hate their ancestors. And yes, we have read books and researched the war between the states. Have you? Ever?

    • Gosh, ‘Sharon Henry’ the depth of your denial is unfathomable. 8-o

    • Come on Benicio, just read some history instead of being so obstinate. This is an official government website. If you have trouble believing this, you need to go back to school, for Pete’s sake:

      http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/featured_documents/emancipation_proclamation/

    • @Sharon Henry — forget ‘denial’; I’m pretty sure it’s full-blown delusion.

      My number one rule in comments sections is, “Never debate a zealot.”

      Feel free to offer up some credible sources to support your rhetoric — I always listen to reason.

    • You are really quite hilarious (or is it ridiculous; or maybe just plain pathetic). Of course I know all about the EP, and what it entailed, and about the border states, and the continuation of slavery therein — more red herrings, and means to an end for Lincoln.

      You still haven’t provided a shred of evidence (a recognized, credible source) to support your initial claim that the war wasn’t fought over slavery.

  48. Yes, Benicio the drums of your hatred beat on!

  49. I read this post fully regarding the comparison of most recent and previous
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  50. Thank you Artie for your Megan Kelly post… where did you find this? If I could begin to say all that I have read and studied as well as she did, I would have posted that here. I have some trouble comprehending how so many have come to believe that because we want to ‘honor’ those who fought for this that somehow we are against slavery or for it, that we are ‘racist’, that we are somehow backwoods folks who lack intellect… the fact is, most of us who love the South and enjoy living here like who we are and just want to enjoy our children and grandchildren being able to have the things available to them that have been our blessings and all of this federal government control seems hell-bent on taking that away from us. I value and respect everyone’s right to have an opinion and it seems that this has sort of ‘gone down the tubes’ from what it was meant to be. No more comment.