onfederate ViewpointThesis: The world today is blinded from the truth about the “Civil War” just like they are the truth of the creation vs. evolution debate. They’re blinded in the same way as well, misleading text books. The truth is that the North, Lincoln, etc. weren’t as great as they claimed to be, and that they went to illegal measures for an unjust cause.
The public school system was used as a tool of the government and still is to skew the American mind into believing whatever it wants. For example: at the present time the school child has evolution drilled into their head as fact, even though it has already been accounted for as false. The C.S.A. (Confederate States of America) President Jefferson Davis actually predicted this. He taught that if the South lost, then the North would write it’s history. Therefore, the generations to come wouldn’t understand the Confederate call for independence (Kennedy 17).
The public school system was put into effect after the North won the war. It’s plan was to appeal with a free education, which it did. Then it used it’s captives in it’s scheme of confusing them about their parents cause. They were fed by such lies as the Confederates were prejudice slave-holders who beat black people for fun. This, of course, was very successful. Now a people who once believed in the federal government was here to help the states reach common goals, believe it’s their supreme authority.
One of the lies that has already been mentioned is that the “Civil War” is over slavery. This is one of the most dead wrong statements that one could think of. First of all, 70 to 80 percent of Southern soldiers didn’t even own slaves (Kennedy 34). People just don’t get motivated enough to give up their life over whether their neighbor is going to be able to continue having something. One soldier in the Confederate army claimed, “I declare I never met a Southern soldier who had drawn his sword to perpetuate slavery.” Secondly, even for the few slaveholders in the war, C.S.A. President Jefferson Davis, their leader, predicted that all slave property “will eventually be lost” no matter what the outcome (Kennedy 35). Why would a slaveholder risk his life to keep a slave that his leader already told him he’ll lose in the future?
The next popular belief to destroy is that only white Southerners owned slaves. This one isn’t even close to accurate. First things first, white men weren’t the only slave holders. In fact, black men started slavery by enslaving their own people in Africa, but that’s beside the point. In the 1830 American census, over 10,000 slaves were owned by other African-Americans (Kennedy 64, 65). This would also have to mean that there were free blacks in the South. Actually when a member of the 12th Connecticut came down, he said that he saw as many free blacks South as he did in larger cities North (Kennedy 134).
Another surprise will be that the North legalized slavery first in America. Believe it or not, Massachusetts legalized in 1641 while still a colony (Kennedy 71). Also, New Jersey still had slavery going on at the start of the war. In New Jersey to become a free black, you must be born after 1804 and be older than 21 years of age. So this means that everyone not born after 1804 is a slave for life and everyone else is until over 21. In the 1851 census, New Jersey still had 236 slaves for life (Kennedy 75). This was only ten years before the war! Here’s the last one on slavery for now, Major General Ulysses S. Grant’s wife owned slaves during the war (Kennedy 27). This is even more evidence that no one was fighting about slavery.
Everyone had their own views on whites and blacks or blacks and whites at this time, including the President Abraham Lincoln. Everyone loves him, yet no one knows him. It’s really easy to appreciate what you don’t know much about. In 1858, Lincoln was in a debate with Douglas in which he spoke on the relationship between whites and blacks. Listen for yourself:
I will say, then, that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of bringing about in anyway the social and political equality of the white and black races-that 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; and I will say in addition to this that there is a physical difference between the white and black races…I, as much as any other man, am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the white race (Kennedy 27).
Go figure, Abraham Lincoln a white supremacist! Now that is something you won’t here in the history books and neither is the next point about him. But if he was a white supremacist, then why would he be against slavery? It’s because he wants separation from the black people. In another debate with Douglas, he says, and I quote, “Let us be brought to believe that it is morally right, and at the same time favorable to, or at least not against, our interests to transfer the African to his native clime, and we shall find a way to do it, however great the task may be” (Kennedy 28). It sounds like everyone will rejoice at Lincoln picking the splinter out of the South’s eye, but they all miss the plank in his.
The Northern hypocrites were found more racist than their leader. In the North, the white carpenters, bricklayers, and painters refused to do work with the black people, but the whites in the South worked side-by-side with blacks on a regular basis (Kennedy 53,54). Then as well as Lincoln had his ideas with abolition, the Northern states had racist laws working with abolition in their states to keep Africans out. You see, the Northerners became abolitionist when they no longer felt a need for slaves or the black race at all. For example, Connecticut refused to educate blacks because they claimed it would bring them closer to equal with whites. New Jersey prohibited blacks from settling there (with the exception of the slaves we already mentioned). In Massachusetts the punishment of blacks staying there longer than two months required a public flogging. Then in Indiana, Illinois, and Oregon they just weren’t allowed to enter the states at all (Kennedy 55). What does this tell you about what you’ve been taught?
The truth is that the average African-American was treated better as a slave than as a free man in the North. The famous William Lloyd Garrison stated that, “The free colored people were looked upon as an inferior caste to whom their liberty was a curse, and their lot worse than of the slaves…” (Kennedy 54). Now that is something that wasn’t in my history books, any of them. Here’s more proof: the people with a disability ratio, for whites it was 1 out of every 1000, for slaves it was 1 out of every 1464, but for freed blacks it was 1 out of every 506 (Kennedy 78). The freed slaves had almost 3 times as many ratio-wise!
It’s hard to believe it was these people in the North controlling the government, but it makes it easier to understand the South’s secession. Secession was a right given to the states back with our forefathers. Daniel Webster said in 1833, “If the Union was formed by the accession of States, then the Union may be dissolved by the secession of States” (Kennedy 313). This was something that Thomas Jefferson ; James Madison also stated in the Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions or 1798 (Kennedy 165). This is a right that was given to all states since the forming of the Constitution. The South seceded from the Union just like Norway from Sweden, but the North didn’t accept the right and invaded the South anyway (Kennedy 199, 200).
This forced the South to fight a battle or liberty and independence (McPherson 9). In the Creation of Confederate Nationalism, Faust writes that, “…the ideology of Southern independence made it clear that a military victory would not be achieved without a significant moral and society change” (9). A reply to this is that if the Confederates had anything, they had moral character. An aspect that the yankees showed next to nothing.
U.S. Captain N. Lyon and his men forced the surrender of Camp Jackson which was holding a picnic, unarmed. General Frost was there and tells of how the unarmed people were fired upon, killing innocent men, women, and children. Later a crowd of citizens formed, to which the troops fired at, killing 10 and wounding 20 non-combatants, mostly women and children (Davis 357). This is the one of thousands of ruthless attacks by Northern oppressors on unarmed civilians.
U.S. General Benjamin Butler had a 21 year-old young man hung for lowering the American flag. While in Louisiana, he told his officers that they were to treat the ladies of the invaded cities as prostitutes (Kennedy 129). Later U.S. General Palmer wrote him a surprising letter on the forced “saving” of slaves by Union troops. He wrote, “The negroes will not go voluntarily…The matter of collecting the colored men for laborers has been one of some difficulty…They must be forced to go…this may be considered harsh measure, but…we must not stop at trifles” (Kennedy 102).
How can this be that blacks would rather stay than go with yankee troops? Maybe slaves weren’t so eager to escape as they were thought to be. The majority of slaves actually stayed and kept watch for their master’s and supervisors while they were at war (Kennedy 89). Another interesting fact is that over 70% of slave narratives only had positive things to say about their relationship with their masters (Kennedy 85, 86).
Major General William Tecumseh Sherman was a famous, but evil man. He sent his army to Marietta, Roswell, and New Manchester, Georgia. His troops were assigned to take or burn everything which sent the civilians of the area into starvation, except for over 2000 women and children that were shipped North as “workers”, or white slaves (Kennedy 123, 124). He wrote once, “…I fight…to sustain a Government…independent of niggers, cotton, money, or any earthly interest” (Kennedy 291). He wasn’t the only racist general though. General John Pope wrote, “It is my purpose to utterly exterminate the Sioux.” Lieutenant General Ulysses S. Grant was also in on the havoc ; chaos. He wrote in 1864, “In pushing up the Shenandoah Valley…it is desirable that nothing should be left…such as cannot be consumed destroy…” (Kennedy 283).
Even the U.S. Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton was a partner in these awful crimes of terror. In the summer of 1864, the Union Captain Harry Truman was convicted of murder, arson, and larceny, and sentenced to be hanged. Stanton had him released and reassigned to D.C. even though he was caught “plundering” men, abusing women, killing unarmed civilians, etc. No one saw Truman again until he returned to Missouri with the same war crimes (Kennedy 284).
In September or 1861, General James H. Lane reported a skirmish that required him to reduce Osceola, Missouri to “ashes”. On Lane’s conduct, Major General Henry W. Halleck wrote to Major General George B. McClellan, “The conduct of the forces under Lane…I receive almost daily complaints of outrages committed by these men…the evidence is so conclusive as to leave no doubt of their correctness. It is rumored that Lane has been mad a Brigadier General. I cannot conceive a more injudicious appointment…its effect…is offering a premium for rascality and robbing generally.” So McClellan took the letter to the President, Abraham Lincoln. After reading it, he turned it over and wrote, “An excellent letter, though I am sorry General Halleck is so unfavorably impressed with General Lane” (Kennedy 285).
The conclusion will be some yankee prisons statistics. Approximately 26,500 Confederate POWs died due to bad living conditions and murder while being held by the Union (Lang 350). The Union controlled prison in Elmira, New York had a 24% death rate. The Surgeon-in-Chief E. L. Sanger boasted he had, “killed more Rebs than any other soldier at the front” (Lang 334, 336). On the contrary, the Confederates offered complete Bibles and New Testaments as reading materials to their prisoners.
Davis, Jefferson. The Rise and Fall of the Confederate Government, Volume I. New York: Da Capo Press, 1881.
Faust, Drew Gilpin. The Creation of Confederate Nationalism. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State Press, 1988.
Kennedy, James Ronald and Walter Donald Kennedy. The South was Right! Second ed. Gretna: Pelican Publishing Company, 1994.
Lang, J. Stephen. The Complete Book of Confederate Trivia. Shippensburg, PA: The Burd Street Press publication, 1996.
McPherson, James M. What They Fought For, 1861-1865. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1994.