Posts Tagged ‘Confederates’

The Blue and the Gray

May 28, 2012

The Blue and the Gray.

(On the Unveiling, on Monument Day, of the Monument to the Confederate Dead at Chicago.)

The conflict’s o’er, the banner’s furled,
A cause is lost and won,
And martyred heroes sweetly rest
‘Neath stars or glowing sun.
Some calmly lie where gleaming shafts
Rise proudly toward the sky;
Some sleep in the hush of wooded nooks
Where light winds softly sigh.

Some rest where once the battle raged
In tempest of shot and shell,
Where deeds of valor were grandly wrought
And brave men fought and fell —
Fell ‘mid gleam of musket and sword,
And glory of battle array,
And their names and valiant deeds are sung
In the poet’s grandest lay.

But those whose graves are decked today
By friends and erstwhile foes,
Are those whose life-tide ebbed away
‘Mid prison’s gloom and woes.
Far from their sunny homes they sleep —
The homes they loved so well,
The homes for which they sternly faced
The foe and a prison hell.

But garlands fair their graves adorn,
Blest covenants of peace;
And hand meets hand in clasp which tells
That hate and strife must cease.

Tread softly now, ’tis hallowed ground
Where “blue” and “gray” clasp hands,
And mingled tears above the dust
Where sleep these patriot bands.
And they who once were bitter foes
But now are brothers true,
Sing equal praises to the brave,
Wore they the gray or blue.

And this majestic monument,
Unwelled with love and pride,
A tribute is from the living brave
To the brave and true who died.


May 30, 1895.

The Atlanta Constitution (Atlanta, Georgia) May 30, 1895

Images from Wikipedia

How a “Reconstructed” Organ Talks

May 26, 2012

How a “Reconstructed” Organ Talks.

We are in possession, through the courtesy of a friend now sojourning in Mobile, Ala., of late files of the papers of that city. The Mobile Daily Tribune publishes Government advertisements; and from this fact it may be regarded as quite as thoroughly “reconciled” and “re-constructed” as any of the papers of that city. We clip a few items, almost at random, from its columns.

The Tribune is evidently not a radical organ, if the following can be taken as bearing upon this point:

RADICAL. — There are some words which have that about them that inspires the beholder with disgust akin to that which the sight of a loathsome reptile fills him, and the word above we have always considered of that number. The word itself was a very innocent word till it became [polluted] by being used to designate the vilest fiends that ever become incarnate. *   *   The words recks with blood, and we had rather have any other word fastened to us than this bad one. But the men in the United States who have achieved eternal infamy by winning the right to be called radical, seem rather proud of the title — just as the demons who once raged in France, gloried in the names of Jacobin and Sans Culotte. And nothing tends more than this characteristic, to show the ultimate designs of those loathsome reptiles. Not content with having murdered two millions of people, white and black, by fire and sword, they are now seeking to destroy or drive to destruction as many more, by the establishment of packed juries, and the erection of gallows throughout the land.

The following extract from a notice of the “Crescent Monthly,” a literary magazine published at New Orleans, indicates the literary taste of the Tribune, and its desire to “foster and encourage every effort in the right direction:”

The May number of the “Crescent Monthly” is replete with entertaining and instructive matter. The leading article is a just and well considered epitome of Gen. Lee’s campaigns, beginning with his brilliant exploits as commander of the army of Northern Virginia, just after the battle of Seven Pines, and concluding with the mournful story of his surrender. It is a worthy contribution to the history of the late gallant, but unfortunate struggle, and a fitting tribute to the military genius and heroic qualities of our great leader.

Image from Battle of Franklin

To those who have become accustomed to the trashy literature of the North — the narrow-minded, bigoted Bostonology of the Atlantic Monthly, or of the disgusting sensationals of the Harpers, or the diluted nothings of N.P. Willis, the Crescent Monthly should be thrice welcome. We turn from the nauseating doses of Puritan literature to the solid, healthful pabulum of the Crescent, with very much the same feeling that one quits the dirty, murky atmosphere of the city, for the fresh, invigorating air and green fields of the country. The distressful lustrum through which the South has lately passed, brought with it one good effect; it exemplified us, for the time, from the periodical flood of vicious publications threw off by Northern presses.

Our aim should be to protect our homes and firesides from the influence of this baneful literature. We foster and encourage every effort in the right direction, and in this view we commend the Crescent Monthly, whose high, dignified tone and instructive pages entitle it to the support of Southern men.

We cannot conclude this notice more agreeably to our readers than by reproducing from the Crescent the following exquisite little poem by our former townsman, Harry Flash. The poetic fire glares as brightly in the soul of the young poet as when in days gone by, his graceful pen contributed so often to the pleasure of the Tribune’s many readers. But here is the poem:

Image from Legends of America


Four stormy years we saw it gleam,
A people’s hope — and then refurled,
Even while its glory was the them
Of half the world.

The beacon that, with streaming ray,
Dazzled a struggling nation’s sight —
Seeming a pillar of cloud by day,
Of fire by night.

They jeer, who trembled as it hung,
Comet-like, blazoning in the sky —
And heroes such as Homer sung,
Followed it — to die.

It fell — but stainles as it rose,
Martyred, like Stephen, in the strife;
Passing like him, girdled with foes,
From death to life.

Fame’s trophy, sanctified by tears!
Planted forever, at her portal;
Folded, true — what then? Four short years
Made it immortal.

Image of Strother from behind AotW

Au contrarie, “Porto Crayon,” the sprightly artist-contributor to Harper’s Magazine, being a Virginian, comes in for a “first-rate notice” at the hands of the “reconstructed” editor, thus:

Picking up a late number of Harper’s Monthly, sent us by a friend, we noticed that the first article was entitled “Personal Recollections of the War, by a Virginian,” and because it laid claim to such authorship, we were induced to read it. What was our indignation when we found that the creature assuming this glorious citizenship, was no other than the renegade Strother, alias Porto Crayon — the swaggering Adjutant-General of the ruffian Hunter, the burner of Virginia houses and public buildings, the murderer of Virginia’s sons; the hired scribbler and dauber of the venomous Harper’s.

Image of Stonewall Jackson from NNDB

This wretch has the impudence to write himself Virginian, without the prefix “renegade,” when by every means in his power, except great exposure of his person, he was opposing Virginia’s representative men, her Lees, Jacksons and Johnstons — was at the moment of her agony upon the cross, thrusting the finger of scorn and insult into the bleeding sides if his noble old mother. Let such creatures scribble and daub for Harper to his heart’s content; the occupation is worthy of him — but we beg of them to drop all claim to be called Southern or Virginian. Virginian! who that was not on the side of Stonewall Jackson has the shadow of a claim to be called such? World-wide as is the fame of this name it cannot be stretched to take in the same things telescopic and microscopic — Stonewall Jackson and Porto Crayon. — There must be different words to distinguish the principles of these two.   *   *   *

After blatant professions of a determination to oppose by any means in his power, the success of the movement of Virginia in 1861, he tells how he spent much of his time on intimate terms with the officers of Gen. Johnston’s army at Harper’s Ferry, taking drawings of the works, &c., and proves by his own words, that he deserved to be hung as a spy.

But why waste any more words on such a subject? He has consigned himself to eternal infamy by being first the Adjutant-General of Hunter in his Valley march, and then the hired scribeler for Harper’s Magazine.

Image from Virginia Historical Society’s Blog

One more extract much suffice for to-day. It is a portion of a poem which is “going the rounds” of the Southern press, with editorial comments of admiration:

Gallant nation, foiled by numbers,
Say not that your hopes are fled;
Keep that Glorious flag which slumbers,
One day to avenge your dead.
Keep it, widowed, silent mothers,
Keep it, sisters mourning brothers,
Fur it with an iron will;
Furl it now but — keep it still;
Think not that its work is done.
Keep it till your children take it,
Once again to hall and make it
All their sires have bled and fought for,
All their noble hearts have sought for,
Furl that banner, sadly, slowly,
Treat it gently, for ’tis holy.
Till the day — yes, furl it sadly,
Then once more unfurl it gladly —
Conquered Banner — keep it still!

Why shouldn’t loyal sentiments like these again find expressions in the halls of Congress, and all in the departments of the Government? Why?

The Hillsdale Standard (Hillsdale, Michigan) Jun 26, 1866

Zebulon Baird Vance

July 14, 2010

{From the Fayetteville Observer.}


MESSRS. EDITORS. — I very much approve your determination to support for the office of Governor and Commander-in Chief of the forces of North Carolina, Col. Zeb. B. Vance, of Buncombe. From intimate acquaintance I know he possesses uncommon gifts and has had abundant opportunities for improving them.

His natural gifts are great quickness of perception, mother-wit and common sense to a remarkable degree, a fine mind, great energy and readiness of resources, and above all a genial disposition and an honest and kind heart. He is a self-made man. He inherited little more than a good library, but that library he used to great advantage. I first knew him a boy of sixteen, and was astonished at his accurate knowledge of the English Classics. He finished his education at the University of North-Carolina, where he attained the first distinction in his studies, being especially eminent in the department of Constitutional Law.

After leaving College he obtained license to practice law, and soon had a fine practice at the bar. He served as member of the General Assembly from Buncombe, and afterwards a vacancy occurring in the Mountain district by the elevation of Gen. Clingman to the U.S. Senate, Col. Vance was induced to offer himself as a candidate for a seat in the House of Representatives, being opposed by the Hon. W.W. Avery. As Gen. Clingman had carried the district by about two thousand majority, and his influence was in Colonel Avery’s favor, many thought it the merest folly for Colonel Vance to oppose the manifest sentiment of the people. The result showed the accuracy of Vance’s  judgement and his hold on the affections of the mountaineers, for he defeated Avery by over two thousand majority. And the following year Col. David Coleman was vanquished by a similar majority. The ability, mental resource, eloquence, humor and presence of mind exhibited by Col. Vance in these contests with powerful champions, have given him high reputation as an orator.

The course of Col. Vance in Congress was eminently conservative. He labored hard to stay the tide of Northern fanaticism, and he carefully refrained from language calculated to stir up sectional feeling. But when the Northern President overstepped the bounds of the Constitution, refused all efforts by our wisest and best men for conciliation, and called for troops from North Carolina to make war on the rights of the South, Vance’s voice was for prompt and earnest resistance in arms. If Andy Johnston and Horace Maynard had taken counsel of Vance, their names would not now be infamous, and East Tennessee would not be a thorn in the side of the Confederacy.


Not content with raising his voice for war, whilst most of the prominent politicians were cringing around Gov. Ellis and Col. Winslow of the Military Board, begging for office, Col. Vance volunteered as a private in the Rough and Ready Guards. That company made him its Captain, and long before the aforesaid hungry patriots had wormed themselves into the public crib, he was serving his country in the hot and unhealthy country near Norfolk. But his merits were not forgotten. He was soon, though absent at the time, elected Colonel of the 26th regiment of volunteers, easily defeating, I am told, L.O’B. Branch, then Colonel of the Commissary department; but it was not many days before Col. Branch of the Commissary department was appointed Colonel of a regiment by Gov. Clark, and then by the President Brigadier General, and Vance placed under him!! The duties of these various stations Col. Vance fulfilled to the satisfaction of all except one or two partizan editors — to their satisfaction until it was discovered he would oppose their schemes of making Johnston Governor. Few better combine the three qualities laid down by Jefferson as necessary to a faithful public servant, industry, capacity, integrity, than Colonel Vance. Few men have had finer opportunities of learning the duties of a Governor in these trying times. He is a statesman and can conduct the affairs of the Camp.

Some men, Messrs. Editors, believe in the stock of men as in the stock of horses. I will therefore mention that no one in the State can boast of a prouder lineage than Col. Vance. His grand father by his mother’s side was Zebulon Baird, from whom he inherits his name. Col. Baird was one of the best citizens of Buncombe, honored and respected all his days — served for many years as a member of the General Assembly from Buncombe. His grandfather by his father’s side was Col. David Vance, a Revolutionary hero, who fought at King’s Mountain.


A few weeks since, we expressed our determination, to support Col. Z.B. Vance, for Governor, if he would accept the nomination. He has accepted, and to-day, we place his name at the head of our paper, to be kept there until he is elected, which we doubt not will be his fate, as soon as the polls are open and the people vote. We do not think that any reasonable objection can be urged against such a consummation. He is “honest, faithful and capable.” He is devoted to the cause of his country.

He did not want, wait for, or ask for, an office, before he would gird on his sword and fight for the independence of the South — not he — he is not one of that sort. He knew that the great boon of liberty and independence could only be achieved by hard fighting, and, no sooner did Lincoln issue his proclamation for seventy-five thousand men to deprive the South of her rights and liberty, than, shouldering his musket, he stepped into the ranks, a private, (and a very good looking one at that — that is a recommendation sometimes, particularly in the ranks.)

The old saying, “handsome is, that handsome does,” is very true, and in the case of private Vance, has been for the hundredth thousandth time verified. He performed the duties of a private soldier so handsomely, that he was promoted — not by appointment — but by the willing votes of those who knew him best, who, when they had elected him Colonel — pronounced the work handsomely done.

“We can die boys, but we cannot surrender!” We want a man for Governor, who will died before he will consent to surrender a single interest of the State. We want a man who will inform himself of the actual condition of the defences of the State, who is able to judge when her defences are adequate to her means. We want a man who will surrender nothing — who, when a demand is made, by an enemy for surrender will say — “Come and take us!” Vance, we believe to be that man, and thus believing — we intend to show our faith by our works.

Wadesboro Argus.

Weekly Standard (Raleigh, North Carolina) Jul 9, 1862


We have read with much are the speech delivered in the United States Senate on the 14th inst. by Hon. Z.B. Vance, on the bill to provide the appointment of a commission to investigate the question of the tariff and internal revenue laws. The telegraphic synopsis of this speech, which we published last week, gave the Senator’s figures showing how the North has for years absorbed the emoluments of the government, leaving the South to bear the burdens, but his denunciation of the partiality which has obtained in the distribution of the public domain for the purposes of building railroads, digging canals and educating the children of the people formed but a small part of his speech. It was devoted almost entirely to an exposure of the enormities of the existing tariff.

He held it up, in all of its hideousness, for the gaze and the execration of mankind. He laid down the proposition that the protectionists were such for protection’s own sake, and he maintained it. He exposed the fallacy and ridiculousness of the cry that the government should foster our “infant manufactures,” and intimated very clearly that men who, in their chosen calling, cannot make their bread without the special intervention of the government in their behalf, had better quit the business. As to the specious claim that the country had prospered under a protective tariff, he said that with precisely the same logic such results might be affirmed of the small-pox or our Indian wars, “under which” we have undoubtedly prospered. He denounced protection as legalized robbery, and quoted from a decision of the Supreme Court of the United States which declared that a tax levied to build up private fortunes for favored individuals, and not for any public purpose, was none the less robbery because perpetrated under the forms of law.

We wish it were possible for us to lay this entire speech before our readers. It is a masterly argument, compact, symmetrical, thoroughly knitted together. There is just enough of jest in it to give it spice, but it is essentially an argument, and, we may be permitted to say, an irresistible one to any mind not already wedded to the heresy of protection. As proofs of the impression which is created, it may be remarked that Senator Vance had a larger audience at his conclusion than at his opening, and that several Republican Senators left their seats and went over on the Democratic side of the chamber to listen to the speaker.

How, with that speech upon his tongue, Senator Vance could fire the people! Our agricultural population, who are robbed year by year without knowing it, for the benefit of the few men who own cotton mills and iron mills, only need to have this iniquity placed before their eyes to cause them to rebel against it. When they fully learn, as learn they must, that they are daily paying $1.00 for articles of prime necessity which they should get for 50 cents, and 50 cents for hundreds of other articles of prime necessity which they should get for 25 and 30 cents — all this not to afford revenue to the government, because these duties are so high that these articles cannot come in at all and hence afford no revenue, but simply for the purpose of keeping up a monopoly in the hands of a few men that they may grow rich at the expense of the toiling millions — we say when the people come to realize fully the infamy of this protective tariff which robs them in the interest of a favored class, they will rise in their might against it, and woe be unto him who seeks to withstand them.


Recently, in the United States Senate, when Mr. Vance, of North Carolina, asked leave to call up his resolution asking for certain facts with regard to the affairs of the sixth internal revenue district of this State, Mr. Hoar, of Massachusetts, objected, on the ground that the resolution was disrespectful to the Secretary of the Treasury! This means that the Secretary of the Treasury is an officer above the law, and that no act of any of his subordinates must be called into question because it is a reflection upon him! Verily, the pampered office-holders of this country have become greater than their masters, the people.

The Landmark ( Statesville, North Carolina) Feb 24, 1882

The keg of whiskey that Mr. Thos. N. Cooper sent to Senator Vance just before Christmas doesn’t appear to have had the desired effect. It always had been said that spirits never seemed  to take much effect on Vance.

The Landmark ( Statesville, North Carolina) Mar 24, 1882

There is a story somewhere of a Dutchman who had obtained a cheese by surreptitious means, and was just proceeding to masticate it when a violent storm came up, accompanied by terrific thunder and blinding lightning. “Mein Got!” exclaimed the Dutchman, letting fall the supposed cause of the atmospheric disturbance.

“Whoefer know so much fuss apout a leetle old cheese!” so may we exclaim, Whoever knew so much ado over a little five-gallon keg of whiskey! The item from this paper of week before last about Mr. T.N. Cooper’s present to Senator Vance, just before Christmas, had gone all over the State. A Democratic contemporary exclaims, “My, God, Abernethy!” and one of our esteemed Republican contemporaries argues from it that Senator Vance, in accepting the whiskey, accepted a bribe. Without stopping to argue who is the guiltier, the man who offers or the man who accepts a bribe, we observe that Senator Vance’s course in the Cooper matter has not been very suggestive of bribery; and we add to this that in three or four weeks after the keg of whiskey went forward to him, a keg was received at the depot here, from Washington, consigned to Mr. Cooper. We are not prepared to say that Senator Vance sent Mr. Cooper’s whiskey back to him but it looks a good deal that way.

The Landmark ( Statesville, North Carolina) Apr 14, 1882

Senator Vance had a good old-fashioned log-rolling at his mountain home, “Gombroon,” near Black Mountain, Buncombe county. He asked in hands from all the adjacent country, as is learned from the Asheville Advance, and two extra cooks were provided for the occasion, with no lack of good things for them to cook.

The Landmark (Statesville, North Carolina) Aug 7, 1885

A gentleman who met Senator Vance as he passed down the road one night last week on his way to Washington, was asking him all about his recent log rolling at his home, “Gombroon,” at the foot of Black Mountain, and inquired of him what sort of refreshments he had for the neighbors. The Senator replied that he had a barrel of cider and a barrel of beer and a jug hid out in the woods.

The Landmark (Statesville, North Caroling) Sep 18, 1885

Tremont Temple - Boston (Image from Wiki)

Senator Vance’s Lecture in Boston.

Baltimore Sun.

The lecture delivered last evening by Senator Vance, at Tremont Temple, in Boston, for the benefit of the J.A. Andrew Post of the Grand Army of the Republic on “Political Feeling and Sentiment During the Civil War” was devoted in a large measure to a discussion of the errors and delusions under the influence of which the masses of the Northern people were brought to enter upon and continue the war upon the South. Gen. McClellan, in a recently published posthumous work, expresses the opinion that the war was prosecuted by Stanton and other leaders at Washington in the interests of a particular political party.

The war itself, with the reconstruction policy that followed, was directed particularly, if not openly, to the establishment of Republican supremacy. Its history has been written, Mr. Vance complains, on the assumption that the exigencies of a party were those of the Union itself, and that party tricks must be accepted as honest representations inspired by the purest patriotism. He gives special attention to the attempt on the part of Northern writers in dealing with the civil war to forestall history, and to impress upon all who took part in it on the Southern side the stigma of treason. The term “rebellion,” still used by some persons to designate the war between the States, shows what confusion of ideas has thus been produced.

“All crime,” says Senator Vance, “is to be found in criminal intent, and no Southern man believed he was engaged in rebellion or treason.” On the contrary, the Southern people, in common with the leaders of opinion North and South, believed that secession was constitutional and right. “It was the universal understanding,” says Mr. Vance, “when the constitution was adopted, that when a State deemed herself injured she had the right to withdraw.”

The Madison resolution of 1798 asserted this right, and it was reasserted by Massachusetts in 1803, when upon the annexation of Louisiana that State threatened to act upon it. Massachusetts again, several years later, asserted the right of secession at the Hartford convention. But the doctrine became well-nigh universal when the resolutions of 1798 were incorporated in the political platform of the Democratic party, and were again and again enumerated among its principles by national conventions and by candidates who were elevated to the presidency by the votes of a majority of the American people. The Southern people considered the doctrine established and no court has ever decided that secession was treason.

“There could have been no criminal intention,” said the lecturer, “because there was no criminal knowledge.” It is therefore unfair and untruthful, Mr. Vance contends, to continue to speak of secession as treason; “the question was never decided until it was decided by the war.” A like error is involved, it was held, in the common assertion that slavery was the cause of the war, of which it was only the occasion, the real cause being the attempt of the Federal government to control the internal affairs of the States. Failure to resist interference with slavery would have precluded resistance to anything else whatever, thus making an end of State sovereignty. As for the sin of slavery itself, it is divided equally, Mr. Vance maintains, between the North and South. Rhode Island and Massachusetts sent ships to Africa to exchange New England rum for slaves, and disposed of their purchases at home in the South.

“When the Northern States,” said the lecturer, “found their climate unsuited to slaves, they sold them to the Southern States, quit the business and turned philanthropists.” The Southern States were not less forward than the North in bringing about the suspension of the slave trade, “so that on both subjects, secession and slavery, New England is not in a condition to throw stones at anybody else.” The devotion of the great mass of Southern people to their cause during the war, the immense development of Southern manufactures at the time, and the fidelity of slaves to their masters in the time of trial, were other topics treated by the Senator. Upon the question of the Confederate constitution he expressed the strong opinion that, “in view of the great odds against the Confederacy, the Southern people should have stripped themselves naked of all laws and constitutions and bowed to one will.

” Pugnacious to the last, the Senator, however, concluded his remarks to his Boston audience with the mollifying statement, that old as he was he would now fight eight years, if need be, to maintain the Union.

The Landmark (Statesville, North Carolina) Dec 16, 1886

His Protective Pastoral About the Girl with One Stocking.

Senator Vance once set colleagues and spectators in a roar by reading in splendid style the following pastoral, which he said was entitled, “The Girl with One Stocking; a protective pastoral composed and arranged for the spinning wheel, and respectfully dedicated to that devoted friend of protected machinery and high taxes, the senator from Rhode Island, Mr. Aldrich:”

Our Mary had a little lamb,
And her heart was most intent
To make its wool beyond its worth,
Bring 56 per cent.

But a pauper girl across the sea
Had one small lamb also,
Whose wool for less than half that sum
She’d willingly let go.

Another girl who had no sheep,
No stocking — wool nor flax —
But money enough just to buy
A pair without the tax.

Went to the pauper girl to get
Some wood to shield her feet,
And make her stockings not of flax,
But of wool complete.

When Mary saw the girl’s design
She straight began to swear
That she’d make her buy both wool and tax
Or let one leg go bare.

So she cried out: “Protect reform!
Let pauper sheep wool free!
If it will keep both of her legs warm
What will encourage me?”

So it was done, and people said
Where’er that poor girl went,
One leg was warmed with wool and one
With 56 per cent.

Now praise to Mary and her lamb,
Who did the scheme invent,
To clothe one-half a girl in wool
and one-half in per cent.

All honor, too, to Mary’s friend,
And all protective acts,
That clothe the rich in wool
And wrap the poor in tax.

The reading of this piece of doggerel was received with shouts of laughter, even republican senators leaning back in their seats and giving unrestrained way to their mirth. As for the people in the galleries they screamed and yelled frantically, and when Senator Vance sat down they kept up their uproarious applause until the North Carolina orator gravely inclined his head in acknowledgment.

The Atlanta Constitution (Atlanta, Georgia) Jun 3, 1894

Southern Wit in War.

“As we are reminded by the author of “Four Years in Rebel Capitals,” the south, as well as the north, needed to exercise its sense of humor, whenever that was possible, to carry it through the terrible strain of the war. Some of the puns, burlesques, and repartee of that dreadful time have become locally historic. Colonel Tom August, of the First Virginia, was the Charles Lamb of Confederate war wits, genial and ever gay.

Early in secession days a bombastic friend approached him with the question, “Well, sir, I presume your voice is still for war?”

“Oh, yes,” replied the wit, “perfectly still!”

Always to be remembered is General Zebulon Vance’s apostrophe to the rabbit, flying by him from a heavy rifle fire: “Go it cottontail! If I hadn’t a repurtation I’d be with you!”

Lima Daily Times (Lima, Ohio) Sep 17, 1891

Senator Vance Favors the Income Tax.

Richmond Dispatch, 1st.

Senator Vance, of North Carolina, has been in town here for two days, and speaking of revenue and tariff legislation to-day said:

“There is throughout the South an almost unanimous sentiment in favor of an income tax, and this question will be brought up when the tariff bill is under discussion. My own opinion is that an income tax of some character will be engrafted upon the tariff measure before it passes Congress. What form it will take it is now impossible to say, but some of the best minds in both branches of Congress are directed to the subject, and it is safe to say they will evolve a satisfactory basis which will receive a hearty Southern support.

“It will be necessary to adopt some means of raising the enormous revenue required to support the government when tariff reform is effected. Some say this should be done by raising the tax on whiskey and tobacco. Experience, however, has shown that this is not always practicable. Statistics prove that less revenue is derived from a high tax on spirits and tobacco than from a moderate tax. The reason for this is that consumption falls off as the tax becomes prohibitory. There is no fairer way to raise revenue than by taxing incomes, notwithstanding the objection that has been urged that it will be class legislation. Such arguments are based on sophistry, as it can be easily shown that an income tax is the most equitable and just of all methods of raising public revenue.”

In an interview in Baltimore the Senator expressed himself as pleased with the Wilson tariff bill, and said the Southern Representatives would favor it. He also expressed himself very strongly in favor of the repeal of the tax on State bank notes, and gave it as his opinion that a bill looking to this end will be introduced at this session of Congress and advocated by most of the Southern Representatives.

The Landmark ( Statesville, North Carolina) Dec 7, 1893

Most of the images in this post are from the following book, which can be read online:

Title: Life of Zebulon B. Vance
Author: Clement Dowd
Publisher: Observer Printing and Publishing House, 1897

(Google book –  LINK)

Civil War: The Seceshers

April 26, 2010

[Written for the Golden Era.]





Adown on the “banks of Muddy Creek”
There tottered an old man, gray and weak.
Tottered and stumbled and mumbled and grumbled,
While down in a coon-skin pouch he fumbled
With shaky fingers, eager to close
On the stove he carried to warm his nose;
An ingenious stove, for by all that’s hot,
The fuel it burned was “rifle-shot.”
His eyes were red and his lips were blue,
“Like angels’ visits,” his teeth were “few
And far between,” while his entire demeanor
Would have been improved had his face been cleaner.
An ancient flint-lock gun he “toted,”
Small at the breech, with the muzzle bloated
And shaped like a bell; the ramrod was thick,
Being whittled down from a hickory stick,
And from this description it is plain to see
The old man was a genuine “F.F.V.”
Behind him straggled his corps d’ armee,
All armed, like their general, cap a pie,
And each — but the leader, who bore the flag —
Had under his arm a five-gallon keg.
Anon they stumbled, anon they fell,
Altogether they looked particular — well,
Never mind their looks; their number was six — still
I must say they appeared to have gone “through the mill!”
The leader, observing the sun in the west,
Commanded a “hawit,” and then ordered a rest,
Then, “smiling” benignantly, wiped his blear eyes,
And seating his poor decripit old rump
On the edge of a rotten palmetto stump,
Thus he begun to soliloquize,
After the fashion of “Charles de Moor.”

When he enters L.H. — Act third, scene four.


“I reckon I’ll squat here awhile, for I feel
Kinder gone in!
My toes is sore ‘nd my jints is almost
Racked in twice!
I would ax some on yez to stan’
Treat, but I knows yez all fagged
Out, ‘nd dead broke.”

Secesher, No. 2 hands the General his keg. at which act of devotion, his commander again “smiles” affectionately at his heroic band, soon, however, relapsing into meloncholy.

“How scrumptious is yonder settin’ sun!
‘Twas onct my favoryte wish to see it set from
Washington, (mournfully) ’twas an idle thought —
A boyish progek!”

Secesher No. 3. — “You bet!”

Secesher General — Regretfully. — “O, days of corn-doggers! O, tubacker-fields of my youth — the time when I was called ‘Bub!’ Will ye never more come back? Never more exhale the sweet fragrance of fried middlin’ an’ hominy, to refrest this yere hungerin’ stumick?”

Secesher No. 2. — “Nary!”

Secesher General — “Shill I never see no more cracklin’ bread? Hev I done eat my last baked possum? Must I never again ply the jovial whip and urge the lazy nigger to his work! O hoe-cakes! — Must I — I — but I’m’er gettin’ wus — I feel — that — I am — indeed peggin’ out! Kernel — your flip — per” (the heroic band gather anxiously around their dying leader) “take this — chaw er tobacker — remember ’twas my partin’ gift — Leftenant — this tickler is yours — and you, Seceshers, go and devote what remains of life to usefulness and — Uncle Sam — bury me in my native sile — I — I — I die! (Dies, kerflummuc.) Tableaux.


A Dirge, to be sun in chorus: Air, “We’re a Band of Brothers.

We’re a band of bold Seceshers,
We’re a band of bold Seceshers,
We’re a band of bold Seceshers from the Aligator State,
But we’re coming to our senses,
Yes, we’re coming to our senses,
Yes, we’re coming to our senses since we’ve seen our leader’s fate.

Final Tableaux. Body of Secesher General C.
Palmetto Flag half-mast. Raise Stars and Stripes.
Benediction by Dr. Scott. Slow curtain.

Edwin Forrest - McKean Buchanan - Yankee Locke

NOTE. — This play is copy-righted, and will soon be produced simultaneously at San Andreas and Peoria. Plagiarists and “unscrupulous managers” will be persecuted to the extent of the law. I will also state positively, that I have not disposed of copies to Edwin Forrest, McKean Buchanan* and Yankee Locke.


*Mckean Buchanan was an American Shakespearean Actor. Only link I could find was to the above image on ebay.

NOTE: The following  “remarks” were actually above this “dramatic poem” in the paper:


“We are glad to see that Mr. Gunter has resumed his pen.” An unpublished remark by the editors of several papers who use my articles without giving credit. — L.G.


R. Bon. — “What does Gunter charge per line?”

Bus. Man. — “He doesn’t write that way. His terms are, $100 for every brilliant thought.”

R. Bon. — “That’s rather exorbitant — but — never mind — engage him.”

“Ludwig Gunter, Prentice and Parson Brownlow must be bought.” — J. Davis to his Secretary of Finance.

That Functionary, despairingly. — “It can’t be done.”

J.D. — “Then entreat them as gentlemen to let us alone.

Funct., weeping.— “They haven’t got no gentlemenly feelinks about ’em!”

“Ha! ha! ha! ho! ho!ho! he! he! he!” — Complimentary ejaculations emitted by President Lincoln during his perusal of — The Last of the Seceshers.”

Hamlet in perplexity to the players. — “The Mobled queen — the mobled queen.” —

Polonius, who has been reading ‘L.G.’s’ Inst. in the ‘wings’ — inadvertently: “The Last of the Seceshers” is good, my lord” — recovering himself — “the mobled — the mobled, Seceshers is good, my lord.”

I might append volumes of similar occurrences to prove the wild enthusiasm possessing the public mind regarding my writings, did I not think the above as amply sufficient and conclusive evidence to my readers as it is to myself. — L.G.

The Golden Era – Jan 19, 1862


The following palpable hit at the war correspondence, telegraphic and otherwise, came from Vanity Fair, and will be relished by those who are tired of the emptiness of the greater part of the news from the seat of war:

WASHINGTON, Anytime, 1861.

Dear Vanity: Affairs remain pretty much in statu quo.

My statement that the “future was big with something” was a forgery. My letters have been tampered with. Perhaps it might be better, hereafter, for you to have all your correspondence written in your back office, as the Tribune does.

That, however, is a circumstance to which I will not at present refer. This letter, at all events, shall be authentic and truthful.

Upon my honor!

John Minor Botts - Harpers Weekly - May 1864

I have just had a long talk with John Minor Botts, whose imitations of my letters have produced so much laughter among readers of the Tribune. I am not angry with John.

His correspondence is such an evident burlesque of mine, that nobody could imagine for a moment that he meant to mislead any one.

He has given me some very important information concerning affairs in the rebellious districts.

There are no rebel soldiers in Virginia, and those are only a mob of half-starved, half-naked wretches, who always run away. In fact they have all run away, and John says that he thinks some of them are still running.

General Beauregard, of whom you may have heard, is half-starved and half-naked like the rest. He lately run away from Richmond to Manassas Gap, where the poor wretch was obliged to erect heavy batteries, for fear the Federal troops should march upon him.

It is by such cowardly acts as these that the rebels have lost the respect of the whole Cabinet and army.

Old Abe has no longer hesitated to avow his contempt for the entire Confederacy.

General Scott says that if this sort of thing continues eight or ten months longer, he will call out fifty thousand more volunteers, and fortify Washington and Alexandria so that they will be perfectly safe from any attack.

As for me, I knit my noble brows, fold my arms across my manly chest, and chew a good deal more tobacco than usual.

But I say nothing.

Botts tells me that the rebel army is headed by a fellow named Jackson, a brother of the assassin of Ellsworth.

An engagement is expected to occur somewhere, shortly.

Nothing seems to be known, however, on any subject.

Our picket-guards were all shot, last night, by a party of rebel scouts, supposed to be brothers of Jackson, the assassin of Ellsworth.

Professor Lowe’s plans have all gone up.

Mrs. Lincoln is well. The report that she took paregoric, habitually, is unfounded.


Image from the Cleveland Civil War Roundtable

Three Secession spies were discovered in the basement of my tent last night. I put up a new gallows and turned them off this morning, in the presence of my gallant Zoozoos and several invited guests, among whom were some of the belles of Washington.

The poor devils died easily and gamely. — They were said to be brothers of Jackson, the assassin of Ellsworth.

Botts tells me that affairs in Virginia are very unsettled. He stayed three months in Richmond, and commerce is so dead there that grass grows in the principal streets. In fact, he pastured a cow for some weeks right in front of his street door.

The negroes, he says, are kept busy all the time, quelling insurrection among the whites. The Tribune has engaged Botts as a regular correspondent, to take the place of Harvey, who has been rewarded by a fat foreign mission. Abe says that if Governor Pickens will come on to Washington, he will give him the consulate of St. Petersburg. There is another man, applying for that post now, who will probably get it. His name is Jackson, and he is said to be a brother of the assassin of Ellsworth.

Scott informs me, unofficially, that he is very desirous that the rebels shall remove all their batteries and camps from Virginia. If they persist in keeping them there, he will not send a single Northern soldier into the State.

As I write, forty thousand Massachusetts troops are defiling past my camp. They are returning from a furlough granted them in order that they might enjoy a regular old-fashioned Fourth-of-July clam-bake at home.

They are now intended for the defense of Washington.

They were assaulted, during their march through Baltimore, by a mob, headed by two ruffians named Jackson, supposed to be brothers of the assassins of Ellsworth.

Picket Guard - 1862

A brilliant little affair took place near Cloud’s Mills the other night. Three of my Zoo-zoos were out on picket duty, and were attacked by forty of the rebel cavalry. The boys bravely stood their ground until assaulted, when each retreated in a different direction, but in good order.

They picked up three hundred stand of arms, and cannon, flags, musical instruments, etc., in great quantities, which the rebels dropped in their flight. One Minnie rifle, encrusted with gold and precious stones, bore the name of Jackson, a rebel farmer living in the neighborhood. The boys were especially anxious to catch him, as he had been known to maltreat the Union men in the rebel army, and he is, also, a brother of Jackson, the assassin of Ellsworth.

And besides, he is said to carry a very costly gold watch, and a good deal of pocket money.

I have just learned that Botts is not to be trusted. His washer-woman tells me that among the dirty linen he sent her was a Secession flag that he had used. I suspect him of collusion.

A messenger has this moment arrived with intelligence that Botts has been detected in the act of setting fire to the President’s wheat-field, in front of the White House. I have issued an order for his arrest. He will be confined in Fort McHenry.

The fire is extinguished, but the wildest excitement prevails.

One hundred thousand more volunteers will be called immediately, to insure the safety of Washington.

People are very much blamed by everybody.

Nothing is known.

I think that something will happen.

Bianca is ironing a dozen clean havelocks for me.

My men are shaving themselves and blacking their boots, previous to a forward movement.

The newspaper correspondents are holding a meeting with closed doors, no gentlemen being admitted. Their object is to give advice to me and General Scott, and to have their statements of facts agree, for once.

I am partially intoxicated.

A mysterious stranger, with a slouched hat and a long black cloak, has been arrested for trying to bribe Old Abe to recognize the Confederate Government. At first, he was supposed to be only a hero in one of Ned Everett’s or Ned Buntline‘s blood-and-thunder novelettes, but it has since been discovered that he is a brother of Jackson, the assassin of Ellsworth. He is safely handcuffed, and I am


The Golden Era – Jan 19, 1862

Yankee Doodle and the Confederate’s Lament

April 9, 2010

Confederate Soldier’s Lament.


I’m an ex-Confed’rit sojer, I fit in sixty-one
At the battle of Manassy, wot the Yankees call Bull Run;
An’ till Bobby Lee surrendered kep’ on the scout for blood,
Somethimes kivered with glory and sometimes kivered with mud.

I frogged it in the valley with Stonewall Jackson’s band,
An’ lived on faith an’ taters while skedaddlin’ through the land.
We got dead loads of fightin’ in the hottest uv the strife,
And other discombobolations uv a Confed’rit soldier’s life.

The ol’ Kaintucky rifle hangin’ on my cabin wall
Went in for the Confed’racy, an’ staid ontil its fall;
While the tired cuss that toted it, and quit with nary red,
Left some fingers in Varginny, and tuk home sum Yankee lead.

I didn’t luv the kyarpet-bagger, an’ I duzzin’t luv ‘m yit,
Although I hain’t no kind o’ grudge agin the men I fit;
An’ ez a right smart time hez passed, it kinder strikes me cold,
That the ches’nuts cracked in wah time iz gittin’ mighty old.

I’ve rather tu much rhumatix fur fightin’ now-a-days;
Ol’ Uncle Sam hez used me squar’, an’ I lost my scrimmage craze,
When it’s suddenly diskivered thet the cause we thought was lost
Hez bin Rip Van Winkleizing, an’ is wuth a premium on its cost.

So now I’m kickin’ desp’rit bekase I didn’t squeal —
When we uns hed the best of it in the late Varginny reel;
We hed the Fed’ral hosts surrounded with a corp’ril’s gyard uv men,
An’ it makes me mad ex sin ta think we didn’t know it then.

The men wet did the fightin’ thought they hed about enuff,
While Jeff allows they hedn’t, which on us iz mighty tuff;
But I wonder, ef we wuzzin’t beat by an over-whelmin’ foe,
Why it is he didn’t say so some twenty years ago?

*  *  *  *  *  *
“Tain’t wuth while to keep the wah ragin’ till Gabriel sounds retreat,
An’ no ninety-nine horse-power jawin’ will prove to the world we wan’t beat;
An’ I reck’n it’s the settled conviction uv the boys wot fit for the South,
Thet whar muskits an’ cannon’s a failure, thar’s no use to shoot off your mouth.

Then hoorah for the flaf of the Union, thet floats o’er the lany uv the free!
For, notwithstandin’ the misunderstandin’, each Yank iz a brother tu me.
But — while I ain’t spilin’ far fightin’ –ef the Yanks ever try to secede,
I’m blamed ef I don’t help to give ’em all the sweet Hail Columbia they need.

Carroll Sentinel (Carroll, Iowa) Oct 28, 1887

Funny Advertisement for a Remedy


“There was a war song of the rebellion that I have not seen in any collection of the songs of that time,” said the elderly man. “It was sung by a faker who followed the county agricultural fairs in central New York selling a magic ointment warranted to remove warts, corns, bunions, alleviate ingrowing toenails and chilblains and do much besides for suffering humanity.

“The song seemed to have been composed, words and music, by the singer. It was patriotic, sentimental and prophetic, and now, after half a century, it contains accurate historical data. It suited the grownups and fanned the blaze of patriotism of the children so much that from being one of them I can recall some of the stanzas and whistle the air. It was sung by the faker at intervals just before he opened his satchel and said: ‘Now, gentlemen and ladies, I have a few more boxes of this magic ointment, warranted to cure —‘

“The date of the song’s composition was somewhere between the breaking out of the rebellion in the spring and the time in the fall when the prize pumpkins were fit to be exhibited at the farmers’ fairs, as appears in a stanza in which allusion is made to the smaller comet that followed the appearance shortly before the war of the most impressive comet of modern times — the scimitar of flame that when it was at its brightest hung in the western sky in the early evening, its curved blade as broad in this broadest part as the disc of the full moon, almost as bright and long enough to reach from west to northwest.

“The opening stanza of the song set forth in a matter of fact way the immediate situation. It ran:

Secession in the South
Is in everybody’s mouth;
Old Jeff Davis is a hard one,
But old General Scott
Is a-working out a plot
To drive them from our happy land of freedom.

“The reference to the comet helps to narrow down the date of the song’s composition to about the middle of the fall of 1861, for it says:

The comet you see at night
Is a wonderful sight;
It’s been there since the war has been raging,
It had better go down South,
Slap them rebels in the mouth
And drive them from our happy land of freedom.

“The triumphant chorus, never omitted at the close of a stanza, evoked loud and continued applause. It was:

Ho, ho, ho. Ho-ho, ho-ho, ho!
The day of retribution am a-coming,
The Lord bless the free,
For they’re right, I’m sure they be;
Then hurray for our happy land of freedom!

Yankee Doodle (Image from

“But the closing stanza,” the reminiscent man went on, “was the real seller of the magic ointment. One has to know the state of the public mind in those days to understand how the stanza warmed up the listeners to the merits of the faker and his invaluable house-hold remedy. It enthused the grownups and made the small boys yell and kink their toes. It was uncompromising in this patriotism, but at the same time it foreshadowed eventual and glorious reconciliation all around. This is the way it went:

Then up with Stripes and Stars
And down with civil wars!
Let the scream of our eagle still be Union.
God bless the whole caboodle,
Hail Columbia, Yankee Doodle.
Hip, hurray, for our happy land of freedom!

The Pittsburgh Press (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) Apr 3, 1912

Terry’s Texas Rangers

February 4, 2010

Flag image,  and much more,  can be found here: Terry’s Texas Rangers


A friend has kindly handed us a brief sketch of the Terry Rangers whose achievements in the late war constitute an interesting chapter in its history. Among the gallant members of the regiment was Capt. Griffin, who joined it in August 1861. It was in the skirmish at Woodsonville that Colonel Terry was killed. Gen. Johnston evacuated Bowling Green February 1862, when the Terry Rangers covered the retreat to Shiloh, soon after which the battle of Shiloh was fought. Soon after the victory of Murfressburo was won at which the Rangers were commanded by Forrest.

Subsequently this Regiment joined Bragg at Sparta, Tennessee, and bore a conspicuous part in the battle of Perryville, and afterwards covered the retreat through Cumberland Gap into East Tennessee. Next this Regiment went to Murfreesboro, where it performed nearly all the Post and scouting service, until the attack by Rosecrans which was repulsed successfully and a Confederate victory obtained. It was here that Capt. Griffin was captured,  while on out post duty, and taken to Nashville, and after eight days sent to Bowling Green, and thence to Alton, Illinois, thence, in company with 800 prisoners, he was started to Camp Douglas, but made his escape on the way by jumping from the cars in company with Joseph Stewart, another Ranger.

After various adventures Capt. G. finally joined his Regiment again near Shelbyville in April 1863, and was with the Regiment in the battle of Chickamauga, and was promoted to a Captaincy for meritorious conduct in the spring of 1864, by Col. Patterson, and afterwards that honor was confirmed by Gen. Johnston, by whom he was assigned to special scouting service, in which he continued in separate command of his Company to the close of the war. Every surviving member of that Regiment could, doubtless, furnish us with many interesting events of their campaigns which should constitute a portion of the future history of the war.

Galveston Daily News (Galveston, Texas)  Jul 1, 1866

Thomas Harrison (Image from

We noticed incidentally the other day the arrival of Col. Thomas Harrison. We think his services and record during the war entitle him, on his return home, to a more extended notice.

He entered the service as Captain in 1861, and was, on the organization of that celebrated regiment, the “Terry Rangers,” elected Major. In 1862 he was Lieutenant Colonel. —

In the fall of that same year he was commissioned Colonel. Not many months after his appointment be was placed in command of a brigade, under General Wharton, and very earnestly recommended by Wharton, Polk, Hardee and others for promotion, in terms as highly honorable as a soldier could desire. A miserable intrigue retarded his promotion until a short time before the war closed, when he received the appointment of Brigadier General. During the time he was Colonel, he had the command of a brigade or division. He was always in demand when fighting was on hand, and has fought many times in the States of Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee, Kentucky, Georgia and North and South Carolina.

It is believed that he has been under fire a greater number of times than any other officer in the service. It is no compliment to him to say that as commander of a regiment, brigade or division, no officer in the army, known to us, has exceeded him in devotion to the service, in gallantry, or in the judgment with which he fought his command. This at least is conceded by all who have known his history during the war. He had been wounded shortly before General Johnston’s surrender and was not present when that event occurred. He made his way to Alabama, not intending to give his parol, in the hope that Texas was still under arms. —

Finding, however, that our army had been disbanded, he gave his parol. We welcome back this gallant soldier who has won his laurels on so many battle-fields. Whatever has been our misfortunes, we are sure they are not attributable to him. We trust he may yet enjoy many years of happiness; that he may yet be useful to a country for whom he has freely offered his life, and would, as we believe, have freely given it.

The Colonel’s baggage, horses, &c., together with his boy, Jerry, were in Greensboro when the Yankee surprised it. The horse the Colonel had used through the war was saddled; Jerry mounted him and escaped. He made his way to his master in Mississippi, and was much delighted to meet him. He is on his way home by land. We mention this as an incident to show the deep seated affection of thousands of slaves to their old homes and old masters. All the legislation in the world cannot change that feeling. All the fanaticism of the world cannot destroy it.

Galveston Daily News (Galveston, Texas) Jun 16, 1865

Terry’s Texas Rangers.

From the Louisville Courier-Journal.

It is well known that the late Confederate States cavalry, so-called, were in the main strictly speaking, simply mounted infantry, doing splendid service, it is true, but always dismounting and preferring to dismount and fight, unless the want of time and circumstances prevented. Terry’s Rangers were, however, an exception.

They were organized, armed and equipped and in action specially reserved for regular cavalry charging. Circumstances and the nature of the ground may have sometimes prevented, but this was their forte. Each was armed with a double-barreled shot gun, two revolvers and a ponderous bowie, and adding to courage, confidence, and being most excellent horsemen, they may in truth be said to have been the Mamelukes of the war. They were in many respects a remarkable body of men — remarkable for the esprit du corps, their unwavering confidence in the final success of the cause, their lofty bearing in camp and in field, and the general intelligence of the rank and file. No bills of lading or chimney corner receipts for the cure of whooping cough and measles, or other false or fabricated papers, written, or printed ever passed spy or bummers through lines guarded by ranger pickets; while their reports of the strength, position and movements of the enemy were always timely, valuable, and wonderfully correct.

At Murfreesboro, Friday night, when Bragg was secretly and silently preparing for one if his famous movements to the rear, a ranger galloped up and exclaimed,

“General, the enemy himself is in full retreat.” He was reprimanded and headquarters passed on.

Afterwards Hardee was heard to remark, “not a devil of those rangers but would make at leaset a Brigadier.”

Their excellent material is accounted for by the fact that they were picked men, and the flower of the Texas youth. It had been charged by Union men pending the vote on the proposition for the State to secede, that secession was war, and that having brought it on rich men’s sons would seek place and power, and poor men would have to do the fighting. This aspersion it was important to refute, once for all, and at the first bugle’s blast.

Accordingly, Terry, the Bayard of the State, issued a call which inspired the wildest enthusiasm, and the sons of the most eminent, most influential and most wealthy vied with each other in a zealous and prompt response. In less than ten days the regiment was filled beyond the maximum. Numbers went away disappointed, some dejected, like the Spartans of old, because not chosen to die for their country. At their own request they were sworn in “for the war,” absolutely and without condition, and this months anterior to the call for troops for three years. Each man furnished his own horse, arms and equipments, and in a large measure paid his own way to the seat of conflict. They left Houston, Texas, 1160 strong; 500 recruits were received from time to time, making a total muster roll of 1660 names. They were in over one hundred distinct engagements from first to last, from Woodsonville, Ky., to Graham station, N.C., near which place they fought the last fight of the war, and surrendered, 244 all told, with but one deserter.

Image from

Gen. Albert Sidney Johnson, at Shiloh, witnessing their charge in column upon a strong position, while Hardee moved in the rear, and which resulted in the capture of Gen. Prentiss and his entire command, enthusiastically exclaimed, “with a little more discipline they would be the equals of the Old Guard.” Tuesday evening at Shiloh, the enemy had passed to within one mile of Breckinridge, who was covering the retreat with the remains of his shattered and wearied division. Midway between, the rangers contesting the ground almost truly inch by inch.

The fresh troops of Buell, impatient at delay, and flushed with the hope of overtaking and capturing the gallant Kentuckian and his entire force, which they believed exhausted and a sure prey from hard marching and two days’ desperate fighting, now threw forward two regiments of infantry, supported by one of Ohio cavalry, who, in fine array, came rapidly on as hounds and hunters when their game is at bay. The rangers had suffered a loss of over one hundred, more than ten per cent., in the two days previous conflicts. Wharton, their third colonel since the mournful fall of Terry at Woodsonville, had lost several horses, was twice wounded and borne to the rear the preceding day. Lieut. Col. Ferrill, detached with two companies to burn the white-tented cities, still standing despite the storm that had swept through and over them, was yet absent; so that the whole force left under Major Harrison did not exceed three hundred men.

He had just wheeled from column of fours into line of battle, stretching across the road, and exhorted his men to check their pursuers and give the little army placed in their keeping time to bridge through the mire that impeded their wearied limbs, or opportunity to form if necessary, when Forrest with forty men rode up and lengthened the line to the right. The enemy halted. A level space of some six hundred yards lay between, clear and open except a dead tree here and there on the opposite side. Behind these trees sharp-shooters took post and began to pour in damaging shots just as the command “Reserve fire for close quarters, forward!” passed from right to left re-echoed by subalterns. Horse and rider, though both were jaded, caught new life, and swept onward, straight onward at topmost speed.

The horse, noble everywhere, nowhere bears himself so proudly as in battle. He seems conscious of the danger into which he plunges, but emulous to bear his rider the foremost and bravest of them all; and mortal must be the wound if either foresakes his trust. The well known Texas yell is raised now, and swells louder and louder, and even above the roar of musketry. Horse and rider, one, the other, now in heaps, fall, but the line knits together where gaps have been made, and moves, thunders on into the deadliest sheet of flame. Anon, they waver. The horses falter. A miry bog had impeded the way, but they clear it. At fifty yards the double barrels, loaded with buck and ball, are brought into play, each volley making wide openings in enemy’s line.

Still shouting and “slinging” their guns on the pummels of their saddles, the rangers draw revolvers and make short fire and finishing work, just as the rattling of artillery coming to the enemy’s relief is heard in the distance. One-third of the enemy’s infantry are rode and shot down. The remainder brake and flee through the ranks of their cavalry. These are bowed further and further back, and despite the appeals of their gallant colonel to stand firm, they yield or flee, one, two, and squads at a time — until their leader falls, and the Grey are victorions to the last on Shiloh’s bloody ground.

Galveston Daily News (Galveston, Texas) Feb 27, 1869


The Recent Reunion Reminds a Veteran of an Incident at Shiloh.

HEMPSTEAD, Tex., December 20. — TO THE NEWS:

The interesting report of THE NEWS in to-day’s paper of the reunion of Terry’s Texas rangers in Houston last night reminded the writer of a reminiscence of the battle of Shiloh, fought April 6 and 7, 1862, between the forces of General U.S. Grant of the federal army, and General Albert Sidney Johnston of the confederate.

The writer was a private in Captain William Christian’s company, Second Texas Infantry regiment. The battle was planned by General Johnston to be opened on Saturday morning, April 5, at daylight, and the entire army slept on their arms in front of the federal army on Friday night, the 4th. A heavy rain storm fell and the troops were soaked thoroughly.

The plan of opening the battle on the 5th failed on account of Major-general Breckinridge’s division failing to reach the point assigned them in the order of battle. The heavy rains caused the roads to be almost impassable, and the cavalry and artillery made their condition worse than ever. Breckinridge could not come up until twenty-four hours later. This was why the battle was opened on Sunday.

The federal army was encamped between Lick and Owl creeks, extending from Pittsburg landing, on the Tennessee river, over a distance of two miles. General Johnson formed his army into three lines of battle. The first one was composed of Tennesseeans, who made the advance and struck the first line of encampments almost before the men could get out of their tents. The frightened troops then collected toward the second line of encampment, where the confederates encountered the federals drawn up in line of battle, and a furious fight opened all along the line. This was kept up all day until General Johnston in comman after he had been killed about 2 o’clock p.m. Many of the confederates, believing that they had won a great victory, became demoralized and scattered during the night, many plundering the deserted federal camps.

At daylight Monday morning, the 7th, it was learned that General Buell, with 20,000 fresh men, had reinforced General Grant’s whipped army of the 6th. The confederate rallied in every direction, and soon another great battle was in progress. The federals slowly drove the confederates back over the route of their advance the morning before.

The writer had been slightly wounded on Sunday afternoon in the advance on General Prentis’ division, and in company with about 200 stragglers and wounded men, had sought to escape the cannon balls of the federals. While waiting here a dashing cavalryman rode up and commenced a speech.

“Who are you?” several inquired.

“One of Terry’s rangers,” was the reply.

“Oh yes, we are nearly all Texas boys,” was the reply.

“Men of Texas, descendants of the old heroes of San Jacinto and other glorious achievements of your fathers, rally once more and come up here and form into line. I will lead you as an independent company. We can whip the Yankees as easy as yesterday. Come up, I say, and show what Texas boys can do.” {He ducked his head occasionally as a cannon ball whizzed by.}

“I tell you, boys,” said Bill Mathews of the Second Texas, “that fellow is a good speaker.”

“He must be a preacher or a lawyer,” said another.

“He talks well,” several remarked; but the line was not formed.

The lone cavalryman happened to cast his eyes in the direction of the river, and coming down a hill was seen several thousand of the federals advancing with the first two lines having crossed bayonets. “Boys, look out, there they come; save yourselves,” said he, and spurring his horse he made very fast time to the rear.

The writer hopes the gallant ranger may be alive and read this. He will doubtless laugh as loud as anybody.

After General Beaureguard had given the order to retreat to Corinth on Monday afternoon Terry’s rangers were ordered to act as a rear guard while the infantry and artillery could retreat. They formed several lines of battle across the Corinth road and drove back the federal cavalry advance.

True the war is over now, but old soldiers love to talk over the exciting events of a quarter of a century ago. We have all had war enough, and the survivors of the war venerate the star spangled banner as much as those whe met on the battlefields of the war twenty-five years ago.

National decoration day, May 20, shows that, and the gallant men who met each other in the shock of battle now go arm in arm and scatter the flowers of spring over the graves of brave men, not inquiriing whether they once wore the blue or the gray.

SIOUX, War Correspondent.

Galveston Daily News (Galveston, Texas) Dec 23, 1888

Terry's Texas Rangers Reunion 1902 - Dallas (Image from

The Survivors of the Eighth Texas Regiment Concentrate for Action.


“Welcome, Terry Rangers.”
This was a voluntary offering to the survivors by the wives of resident Rangers, and hung over the stage at the north end of the hall.

“We will do it or die.” — Gustave Cook.
This answer was made by Col. Gustave Cook, commanding, when asked by a general officer if his regiment could dislodge a heavy field battery, with a brigade reserve.

“They know no such word as fail.” — John A. Wharton.
Reply of this distinguished soldier when asked if he could hold a position for a length of time against a largely superior force.

“You have done well.” — Thos. Harrison.
After a successful charge by the regiment in a critical hour of battle. Revered by the regiment from the fact that he rarely complimented any individual or concerted act of heroism, however great, and that his command was above praise for any action.

“If there is danger ahead put the Terry Rangers in front.” — Joseph Wheeler.
This was the universal order of march when there was work ahead or anticipated by this celebrated cavalry general.

“Yes, go to sleep; the Terry Rangers are between you and the enemy.” — N.B. Forrest.
This was a reply of this great soldier when asked by a brigade commander if he should unsaddle and rest and sleep.
Capt. Christian proposed — The Memory of Gen. John A. Wharton, Drunk standing and in silence.

A member of the command then read the
which was written for the occasion by Mrs. C. M Pearre of Galveston:


A few fierce years we met together
In a desolate land of graves,
Braved shot, or shell, or roughest weather,
Our glorious Southern cause to save,
Together, saw our hopes pass away.
Radiant-colored hopes that beamed
Resplendent on that bright spring day
When o’er us first a banner streamed.

Together, saw a strange banner unfurled
With the aroma of blood, suggestive cost
These burning words for a gazing world,
Thy cause, they Southern cause, is lost!
Met wars fiat, as brave men meet,
With folded hands and heads bowed low;
But unswerving eyes on that last retreat
Told our valor to the conquering foe.

Then came of years a dreary dearth,
Our manhood in lethargy was shrouded;
When mental chaos by painful birth,
Produced a rainbow all unclouded.
It spanned our glorious country round,
Warmed hostile hearts of each brother,
Who thereon read this truth profound:
This is our country, we have no other!

Then brighten the day with joy and mirth,
Let music peal her gladest strains,
Sing the songs of camp and hearth,
Spirit voices may sound the refrains.
Let the sparkling wine go round,
Toast Reunion day in every form,
Until each comrade’s heart is bound
With chords magnetic, true and warm.
Last of all, one toast we will call
(Drink it comrades with bowed head,
Other forms will throng the hall) —
In memory of our “Noble Dead.

Galveston Daily News (Galveston, Texas) Dec 17, 1876

Mule Gruel and Molasses

December 16, 2008

Log Hut Company Kitchen

Times were tough during the Civil War, especially in the south. Two examples from the same southern newspaper:

HORSE AND MULE MEAT.–Our contemporary of the Charlotte Democrat copies with commendation the advice of the Richmond Enquirer, that we must take good care of the horses and mules, for we may have to come at last to horse and mule meat. Will the Editors of those journals set the example? Let them have their teeth filed and make a trial of it. John Mitchell was no doubt used to such meat in Europe, but it would test the molars of our contemporary Yates.

What a commentary is this on the extravagance of those in power! Eighteen months ago meat was as plentiful almost as rocks. The army and the people had the greatest abundance; but now the army is reduced to a few ounces to each man per day, and thousands of our people have not tasted meat for weeks. The most magnificent resources any people ever had to begin a revolution, have been misapplied and wasted; and now the suggestion from the official paper is, the people must make up their minds to live on horse and mule meat. They will do no such thing. They will stop the war before they will do it.

You go, girls!

THE WOMEN SEIZING MOLASSES.–We learn from a friend that seven women at High Point, a day or two since, six of whom were soldier’s wives, went to the store of Mr. Wilham Welch and rolled out a barrel of molasses and divided it. The merchant, it is said, had refused to sell, and was holding up for a higher price. Our informant states that the merchant is a great war man, and favors general impressment of supplies by the army. How does he like the principle of impressment as applied in his case?

Weekly Standard (Raleigh, North Carolina) 25 March 1863