In Remembrance of Pickett’s Charge

Originally posted on Emerging Civil War:

As has become our custom at ECW, we offer you Faulkner’s famous reflection in remembrance of Pickett’s Charge:

For every Southern boy fourteen years old, not once but whenever he wants it, there is the instant when it’s still not yet two o’clock on that July afternoon in 1863, the brigades are in position behind the rail fence, the guns are laid and ready in the woods and the furled flags are already loosened to break out and Pickett himself with his long oiled ringlets and his hat in one hand probably and his sword in the other looking up the hill waiting for Longstreet to give the word and it’s all in the balance, it hasn’t happened yet, it hasn’t even begun yet, it not only hasn’t begun yet but there is still time for it not to begin against that position and those circumstances which made more men…

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“The case for finally building a memorial to James Madison”

Originally posted on History Chick in AZ:

Michael Signer, author of Becoming Madison, makes a great case for a memorial to honor our fourth president James Madison. For me it’s an easy sell. I’ve spent the last six years studying Madison’s substantial contributions to the struggle for religious liberty. But Madison’s contributions to the government and character of the United States goes way beyond this important right. Here’s just part of his impressive resume:

– He served in the Virginia Convention (1776) that created Virginia’s first constitution, where he made a major contribution to the future of religious liberty in Virginia (see earlier post on this topic).

– He served in the Continental Congress from 1780 to 1783

– He served in the Virginia House of Delegates (1784 to 1786), where he successfully defeated Patrick Henry’s bill for a general assessment to support teachers of the Christian religion and pushed through the passage of Jefferson’s famous…

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Five Fascinating Facts about Thomas Paine

Originally posted on Interesting Literature:

Five fun facts about Thomas Paine, firebrand of the American War of Independence

1. Paine’s pamphlet Common Sense remains one of the bestselling books in American publishing history. In 1776 alone it is thought to have sold in excess of 100,000 copies. Paine’s pamphlet Common Sense argued for independence for America, and when Thomas Jefferson drafted the Declaration of Independence in 1776, he drew heavily on Paine’s work (Paine was also the first person to use the phrase ‘United States of America’). John Adams would later say, ‘Without the pen of the author of Common Sense, the sword of Washington would have been raised in vain.’

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Remember the Authority

Rarely has the work of one historian influenced so many… students of an event as did Harry W. Pfanz- THE authority on the battle of Gettysburg.  His trilogy of books resides on the shelves of all serious students of the battle- but one in particular, The Second Day, stands as a monument to battlefield study.  All subsequent work on that day cites Pfanz out of reverence every bit as much as academic obligation.

Getty

Your humble author spent many a steamy Summer day… tramping those hallowed grounds with his well worn copy of Pfanz’s master work- pages smudged with precious mud, the binding broken open lovingly in every chapter.  Rereading the book was no chore- for every attempt brought some new insight, followed by an anxious expedition to the  field- it’s what the Pfanz did.  The heroes came alive on the pages: Chamberlain, Oates, Hood, Hancock, Caldwell, Zook…. Pfanz detailed their actions so accurately, passionately, his prose reads as if he were there that pivotal day.  The New York Times Review famously remarked,  ” A tribute worthy of the efforts of the men who took part in what the Confederate Gen. James Longstreet called ‘the best three hours’ fighting ever done by any troops on any battle-field.’ “

Gettysburg 2nd Day cover

Like any great writer, Pfanz left us wanting more… it is difficult not to feel selfish- we wanted more from him.  Books about Gettysburg will still be written and some may even stand the test of time- but the true test of battlefield study can be fairly established- how does it compare to Harry Pfanz?  Thank you Dr. Pfanz, for bringing Gettysburg to life- and giving a kid from Lancaster a lifetime passion.

I think I’ll read The Second Day again…

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Gettysburg Hidden Treasures

1. Barlow’s Knoll;  Left for dead by his own troops during the first day’s fighting, General Francis Barlow fell grievously wounded near this spot.  Confederate General John B. Gordon’s act of mercy allegedly saved Barlow’s life.

Youngest General in the Army

Youngest General in the Army

2. Hazlett/Weed Rock; General Stephen Weed had just deployed his brigade down the face of Little Round Top when he fell mortally wounded.  Nearby, deploying his battery was Captain Charles Hazlett, a friend of Weed’s from West Point.  Bending to hear his friend’s dying words, Hazlett was struck on top of him.  This engraving, long a battlefield guide secret, has recently been filled in.

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3. Hancock’s Wounding;  Involved in the decisive maneuvering on all three days of the battle, Hancock had just ordered a flanking attack to Pickett’s charge when shrapnel drove into his upper thigh.  This small monument marks the place where the hero of Gettysburg received his wound.

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Facts in Five

Old goggled-eyed snapping turtle….

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George Gordon Meade edition

  • Meade was born in Cadiz, Spain in 1815- his father was serving as an administrator for the US Naval station there
  • An average cadet, Meade graduated in the upper- middle of the class of 1835 (19 of 56)
  • As an Army Engineer, Meade designed lighthouses including those at Long Island, Cape May, and Atlantic City
  • On June 30, 1862 he was badly wounded during the sixth of the Seven Days battles- Frayser’s Farm
  • Despite popular belief, Meade was not replaced by Grant-  Meade commanded the Army of the Potomac from June 28, 1863 until the end of the war

 

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Hubris

We know better, perhaps we know everything todaywe of the information age, with the world at our fingertips have all the answers.  Science, literature, culture…even history can be changed by our definitive grasp of what is right, just, and true.  Previous generations were naive, exploitative, and selfish.  Now with the benefit of hindsight which grows from our superior comprehension  of morality and intellectual prowess; we can right the wrongs, free the oppressed, and expunge the perpetrators from our collective memory.      This kind of thinking will be the end of our republic if we allow it to permeate our society. 

Don't Tread on Me

Don’t Tread on Me

So, as pseudo-intellectuals Don Lemon and Ashleigh Banfield…  openly discuss destroying the Jefferson memorial in front of millions of viewers, the seeds of our downfall are planted.  Willingly equating the memory of Thomas Jefferson with the deranged ramblings of a homicidal maniac, Lemon used the worst kind of moral relativism to justify “that discussion.”   Destroying our history is an acceptable remedy to those who know so little about it.

Jefferson is frustratingly complex and it is easier to… simplify his transgressions-  he owned slaves, therefore he must be bad.  We recognize the horrors of slavery today- but this doesn’t satisfy the new generation of moral police.  Regardless of what Jefferson did for our country, he owned slaves and that was wrong.  They believe America’s true greatness exists in spite Jefferson.  Our Creed did not need articulated apparently- and the thousands of freedom fighters throughout history who have spat Jefferson’s words at tyrants- they would have found them on their own.

"And were we to love none but with imperfection, this world would be a desert for our love"

“And were we to love none but with imperfection, this world would be a desert for our love”

It may start with the Confederate flag… but this movement to radically alter our history will continue.  Narrow minded academics like Paul Finkelman will fan the flames of discontent and dangerous media pundits will use tragedy to rally the uninformed to their nefarious cause.

 

Please help this site stop this insanity —  spread the word   PracticallyHistorical.net   needs your help

Our Creed

Our Creed

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