overcome one Confederate.
It was not for want of courage on the part of the Federal
The men who laid their lives on the sacrificial altar in front of Marye's Heights
, the men who stormed the ‘Bloody Angle
’ at Spotsylvania
, were certainly brave men, vet the fact stands uncontested that the Confederates
, with 600,000 held at bay for four years the Federals
, in the August (1891) number of the Century
, speaks of the subduing of the South
as having been ‘well done and in a reasonable time.’
When we remember that the coalition against Napoleon
in 1814 invaded France
in January, and in sixty days they had her capital in their possession and Napoleon
was in exile; when we remember that the next coalition against France
was made on March 25, 1815, and that in less than ninety days Napoleon
was a prisoner, and France
was at the feet of the allies; when we remember that in the Franco-Prussian war the German army in less than six months from the declaration of war sang the songs of their Fatherland under the shadows of the Tuilleries, we may think the subduing of the South
may have been well done, yet we do not think that in point of time it was a great military achievement.
Some of the readers of this article may ask why it was ever written.
We answer frankly, it was written simply to focalize the facts of history so they might be accessible to those who had not the time to go through many volumes of official records to find them.
The current history of the day, as taught in our public schools, has impressed the children of those who sustained the ‘Lost Cause’ as though the history of their ancestors would not bear criticism.
These children have heard nothing but the songs of the victors, and it is due them that they should have the facts of history as presented by the official records, to prove to them that though the children of the vanquished, yet they are descended from heroes.
We say to the victors, Raise your Arc de Triomphe
and write in letters of gold, Vicksburg
, and our children will pass with uncovered heads under its shining arch; but let them, as they look up through their tears at the obverse side of this arch, see written, ‘Federal enlistments, 2,778,304; Confederate enlistments, 600,000,’ and this is all they ask.
It is the truth which makes a man free.
In this article we have spoken unstintingly of the gallantry of the Federals
on many hard-fought fields, and have not spoken, except incidentally, of the bravery and endurance of the Confederates