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Chapter 13: brotherhood.

Burns of the Bernard house battlefield of Fredericksburg


The future president of the Confederacy, with his wife: the first of seven scenes from the life of Jefferson Davis This picture, made from an old daguerreotype, forms as true a document of Jefferson Davis' human side as his letter concerning Grant on page 290. Davis was born in Kentucky the year before Lincoln. His college education began in that State. In 1842 he entered West Point. Army service proved his ability to command. In the Mexican War he won distinction as colonel of the First Mississippi Volunteers by the famous ‘reenteringg angle’ at Buena Vista. As Senator from Mississippi and Secretary of War under President Pierce, he became the accepted leader of the Southern party in their insistence on the doctrine of States' rights. His unanimous election as President of the Confederacy on February 8, 1861, by the Congress at Montgomery, Alabama, was unsought. When the permanent government was established in 1862, he entered without opposition upon the six years term. When the stress of war turned his administration into a virtual dictatorship, he wielded enormous powers with the utmost fidelity. His military training and experience had instilled him with such confidence in his military capacity that he maintained to the end a close control over all his generals. His wife, who possessed all the charm of Southern womanhood, has left an account of her husband that forms one of the most intimate and winning biographies written by an American author.


‘The royal family’: Jefferson Davis's children The second scene in the series from Davis's career brings to mind the private sorrows that fell to his lot. On June 13, 1862, while a hundred thousand Union soldiers pressed at the very gates of Richmond, his infant son, William Howell, lay at the point of death. The harassed statesman and devoted father wrote Mrs. Davis: ‘. . . My heart sunk within me at the news of the suffering of my angel baby. Your telegram of the 12th gives assurance of the subsidence of disease. But the look of pain and exhaustion, the gentle complaint, “I am tired,” which has for so many years oppressed me, seems to have been revived; and unless God spares me another such trial, what is to become of me, I don't know. Dr. Garnett will, I hope, reach you this morning. He carried with him what he regarded as a specific remedy. . . . My ease, my health, my property, my life, I can give to the cause of my country. The heroism which could lay my wife and children on any sacrificial altar is not mine. Spare us, good Lord.’ Yet he was subjected to peculiar trials. During the war a four-year-old son fell from a balcony and was instantly killed. Only two of his children survived him—Margaret, who married J. A. Hayes of Denver, Colorado, in 1877, and Varina Anne Davis, favorably known as a writer, honored at many a veterans' reunion, and beloved throughout the South as ‘Winnie, the Daughter of the Confederacy.’



‘Let us have peace’

The following significant sentences form part of the conclusion to General Grant's Personal memoirs:

The war has made us a nation of great power and intelligence. We have but little to do to preserve peace, happiness and prosperity at home, and the respect of other nations. Our experience ought to teach us the necessity of the first; our power secures the latter.

I feel that we are on the eve of a new era, when there is to be great harmony between the Federal and Confederate. I cannot stay to be a living witness to the correctness of this prophecy; but I feel it within me that it is to be so. The universally kind feeling expressed for me at a time when it was supposed that each day would prove my last, seemed to me the beginning of the answer to ‘Let us have peace.’

The voice of the South

When General Grant was dying at Mount McGregor the Boston Globe instructed its New Orleans correspondent to interview Jefferson Davis. Mr. Davis was not seen personally, but a few days later he penned the following letter:

Dear Sir—Your request in behalf of a Boston journalist for me to prepare a criticism of General Grant's military career cannot be complied with for the following reasons:

1. Gen. Grant is dying.

2. Though he invaded our country, it was with an open hand, and, as far as I know, he abetted neither arson nor pillage, and has since the war, I believe, showed no malignity to Confederates either of the military or civil service.

Therefore, instead of seeking to disturb the quiet of his closing hours, I would, if it were in my power, contribute to the peace of his mind and the comfort of his body.

[Signed] Jefferson Davis.


The inauguration: third of seven scenes from the life of Jefferson Davis It is the eighteenth of February, 1861. The clock on the State House of Alabama points to the hour of one. Jefferson Davis is being inaugurated as President of the Confederate States of America. The only photograph of the memorable scene was made by A. C. McIntyre, the principal artist of Montgomery. Davis had been elected on February 9, 1861, by the provisional congress that had met there to form a Confederate Government. Although preferring high rank in the army to political position, Davis accepted. On February 18th he delivered a carefully prepared address to the throng here assembled. At the foot of the slope is the carriage of Judge Benajah Bibb, containing his daughter, who later became president of the Ladies' Memorial Association. On July 20, 1860, the seat of the new Confederate Government was transferred to Richmond, Virginia.



The eulogy of Sumner

This speech was delivered in the House of Representatives on April 28, 1874. Senator Charles Sumner of Massachusetts had died March 11, 1874, and the House followed the Senate in paying respect to his memory by suspending business. Lucius Q. C. Lamar, Congressman from Mississippi, was invited by the Massachusetts delegation to second the resolution. Only a perfunctory performance was expected, but as Lamar proceeded the stillness of the House and galleries became almost oppressive. Speaker Blaine sat motionless with tears running down his cheeks. Opponents in many a hot debate, Democrats and Republicans alike, were melted to tears. When he closed, all seemed to hold their breath, as if to prolong the spell; then a burst of hearty and sympathetic applause broke from all over the House and the galleries, such as had not been heard since the war. Of all the speeches delivered in both houses Lamar's alone was sent to all parts of the country by telegraph. The text here followed was from a copy in Lamar's own handwriting.

Mr. Speaker: In rising to second the resolutions just offered, I desire to add a few remarks which have occurred to me as appropriate to the occasion. I believe that they express a sentiment which pervades the hearts of all the people whose representatives are here assembled. Strange as, in looking back upon the past, the assertion may seem, impossible as it would have been ten years ago to make it, it is not the less true that to-day Mississippi regrets the death of Charles Sumner, and sincerely unites in paying honors to his memory. Not because of the splendor of his intellect, though in him was extinguished one of the brightest of the lights which have illustrated the councils of the government for nearly a quarter of a century; not because of the high culture, the elegant scholarship, and the varied learning which revealed themselves so clearly in all his public efforts as to justify the application to him of Johnson's felicitous expression, ‘He touched nothing which he did not adorn;’ not this, though these are qualities by no means, it is to be feared, so common in public places as to make their disappearance, in even a single instance, a matter of indifference; but because of those peculiar and strongly marked moral traits of his character which gave the coloring to the whole tenor of his singularly dramatic public career; traits which made him for a long period to a large portion of his [293]

The president of the Confederacy: the fourth of seven scenes from the life of Jefferson Davis—his widow pronounced this the only war-time photograph The trials of the Presidency were particularly severe to one of Davis's delicately balanced temperament. According to Mrs. Davis, ‘he was abnormally sensitive to disapprobation; even a child's disapproval discomposed him.’ She relates that one day, during the second year of the war, ‘he came home, about seven o'clock, from his office, staggered up to a sofa in his little private office and lay down. He declined dinner, and I remained by his side, anxious and afraid to ask what was the trouble which so oppressed him. In an hour or two he told me that the weight of responsibility oppressed him so that he felt he would give all his limbs to have some one with whom he could share it.’ But she adds in a later chapter, ‘As hope died out in the breasts of the rank and file of the Confederate army, the President's courage rose, and he was fertile in expedients to supply deficiencies, and calm in the contemplation of the destruction of his dearest hopes, and the violent death he expected to be his.’ In all his trials his wife was an unfailingly sympathetic companion.

[294] countrymen the object of as deep and passionate a hostility as to another he was one of enthusiastic admiration, and which are not the less the cause that now unites all these parties, ever so widely differing, in a common sorrow to-day over his lifeless remains.

It is of these high moral qualities which I wish to speak; for these have been the traits which in after years, as I have considered the successive acts and utterances of this remarkable man, fastened most strongly my attention, and impressed themselves most forcibly upon my imagination, my sensibilities, my heart. I leave to others to speak of his intellectual superiority, of those rare gifts with which nature had so lavishly endowed him, and of the power to use them which he had acquired by education. I say nothing of his vast and varied stores of historical knowledge, or of the wide extent of his reading in the elegant literature of ancient and modern times, or of his wonderful power of retaining what he had read, or of his readiness in drawing upon these fertile resources to illustrate his own arguments. I say nothing of his eloquence as an orator, of his skill as a logician, or of his powers of fascination in the unrestrained freedom of the social circle, which last it was my misfortune not to have experienced. These, indeed, were the qualities which gave him eminence not only in our country, but throughout the world; and which have made the name of Charles Sumner an integral part of our nation's glory. They were the qualities which gave to those moral traits of which I have spoken the power to impress themselves upon the history of the age and of civilization itself; and without which those traits, however intensely developed, would have exerted no influence beyond the personal circle immediately surrounding their possessor. More eloquent tongues than mine will do them justice. Let me speak of the characteristics which brought the illustrious Senator who has just passed away into direct and bitter antagonism for years with my own State and her sister States of the South.

Charles Sumner was born with an instinctive love of freedom, and was educated from his earliest infancy to the belief that freedom is the natural and indefeasible right of every intelligent being having the outward form of man. In him, in fact, this creed seems to have been something more than a doctrine imbibed from teachers, or a result of education. To him [295]

Jefferson Davis a prisoner.

Thus the motley crowd from street, doorway, and window gazed after the unfortunate President of the Confederate States on May 10, 1865. Davis had left Richmond on the night of April 2d, upon Lee's warning. In Danville, Virginia, he remained for a few days until word was brought of Lee's surrender. At Greensboro, North Carolina, he held a council of war with Generals Johnston and Beauregard, in which he reluctantly made provision for negotiations between Johnston and Sherman. He continued the trip south on April 14th, the day of Lincoln's assassination. At Charlotte, North Carolina, he was called forth by a group of Confederate cavalrymen, when he ‘expressed his own determination not to despair of the Confederacy but to remain with the last organized band upholding the flag.’ When he learned of the rejection at Washington of the terms agreed upon by Johnston and Sherman, he ordered Johnston to retreat with his cavalry. On April 26th, Davis continued his own journey. Only ten members of his cavalry escort were retained. In the early light of May 10th Lieut.-Col. B. D. Pritchard and troopers of the Fourth Michigan Cavalry came upon the encampment by the roadside in dense pine woods near Irwinville, Georgia, and captured the whole party.

Jefferson Davis a prisoner: passing through macon, Georgia, in an ambulance

Jefferson Davis in the riding dress he wore when captured

[296] it was a grand intuitive truth, inscribed in blazing letters upon the tablet of his inner consciousness, to deny which would have been for him to deny that he himself existed. And along with this all-controlling love of freedom he possessed a moral sensibility keenly intense and vivid, a conscientiousness which would never permit him to swerve by the breadth of a hair from what he pictured to himself as the path of duty. Thus were combined in him the characteristics which have in all ages given to religion her martyrs and to patriotism her self-sacrificing heroes.

To a man thoroughly permeated and imbued with such a creed, and animated and constantly actuated by such a spirit of devotion, to behold a human being or a race of human beings restrained of their natural right to liberty, for no crime by him or them committed, was to feel all the belligerent instincts of his nature roused to combat. The fact was to him a wrong which no logic could justify. It mattered not how humble in the scale of rational existence the subject of this restraint might be, how dark his skin, or how dense his ignorance. Behind all that lay for him the great principle that liberty is the birthright of all humanity, and that every individual of every race who has a soul to save is entitled to the freedom which may enable him to work out his salvation. It mattered not that the slave might be contented with his lot; that his actual condition might be immeasurably more desirable than that from which it had transplanted him; that it gave him physical comfort, mental and moral elevation, and religious culture not possessed by his race in any other condition; that his bonds had not been placed upon his hands by the living generation; that the mixed social system of which he formed an element had been regarded by the fathers of the republic, and by the ablest statesmen who had risen up after them, as too complicated to be broken up without danger to society itself, or even to civilization; or, finally, that the actual state of things had been recognized and explicitly sanctioned by the very organic law of the republic. Weighty as these considerations might be, formidable as were the difficulties in the way of the practical enforcement of his great principle, he held none the less that it must sooner or later be enforced, though institutions and constitutions should have to give way alike before it. But here let me do this great man the justice which, amid the excitement of the struggle between the sections [297]

Horace Greeley and Jefferson Davis.

Jefferson Davis was captured near Irwinville, Georgia, on May 10, 1865, by a detachment of the Fourth Michigan Cavalry. On the way to Macon the party learned that a reward of $100,000 had been offered for the apprehension of Davis as one of the alleged accomplices of the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. It was later found that the testimony on which the charge was made was untrustworthy, some of the witnesses later retracting their statements. After a two-years' imprisonment in Fort Monroe he was indicted in Richmond for treason and liberated on bail. Of the many names attached to the document, the most conspicuous is that of Horace Greeley, editor of the New York Tribune, who had been prominent throughout the war as a molder of Northern sentiment. The passions born of the conflict were still raging, some of them in an intensified form. Greeley displayed unusual courage in subscribing his name to the bond. It appears just above that of Cornelius Vanderbilt, below Gerrit Smith's.

Signatures to the Jefferson Davis bail-bond — Horace Greeley's comes third

Greeley reading the tribune

[298] —now past—I may have been disposed to deny him. In this fiery zeal, and this earnest warfare against the wrong, as he viewed it, there entered no enduring personal animosity toward the men whose lot it was to be born to the system which he denounced.

It has been the kindness of the sympathy which in these later years he has displayed toward the impoverished and suffering people of the Southern States that has unveiled to me the generous and tender heart which beat beneath the bosom of the zealot, and has forced me to yield him the tribute of my respect—I might even say of my admiration. Nor in the manifestation of this has there been anything which a proud and sensitive people, smarting under the sense of recent discomfiture and present suffering, might not frankly accept, or which would give them just cause to suspect its sincerity. For though he raised his voice, as soon as he believed the momentous issues of this great military conflict were decided, in behalf of amnesty to the vanquished; and though he stood forward, ready to welcome back as brothers, and to re-establish in their rights as citizens, those whose valor had nearly riven asunder the Union he loved; yet he always insisted that the most ample protection and the largest safeguards should be thrown around the liberties of the newly enfranchised African race. Though he knew very well that of his conquered fellow-citizens of the South by far the larger portion, even those who most heartily acquiesced in and desired the abolition of slavery, seriously questioned the expediency of investing, in a single day, and without any preliminary tutelage, so vast a body of inexperienced and uninstructed men with the full rights of freemen and voters, he would tolerate no halfway measures upon a point to him so vital.

Indeed, immediately after the war, while other minds were occupying themselves with different theories of reconstruction, he did not hesitate to impress most emphatically upon the administration, not only in public, but in the confidence of private intercourse, his uncompromising resolution to oppose to the last any and every scheme which should fail to provide the surest guarantees for the personal freedom and political rights of the race which he had undertaken to protect. Whether his measures to secure this result showed him to be a practical statesmen or a theoretical enthusiast, is a question on which any decision we may pronounce to-day must await the inevitable [299]

Davis after his release from prison: the last of seven scenes from the life of Jefferson Davis On his return from Canada in 1868 Jefferson Davis paid a visit to Baltimore, and stood for this picture. It reveals the lines of pain drawn by the sufferings of three years. Twelve days after his capture he had been imprisoned in Fortress Monroe in a low cell. There he was kept more than four months. Then more comfortable quarters were assigned. His attending physician, though a strong Republican, was completely won by the charm of the Southern gentleman and published an account of his prison life that aroused public sympathy for the most distinguished prisoner ever held in the United States. On May 13, 1867, Davis was indicted for treason in the United States Circuit Court for the district of Virginia, whereupon he was admitted to bail for $100,000, signed by Horace Greeley and fourteen others. When Davis was released he was greeted with deafening cheers, huzzas, and waving of hats. He was included in the general amnesty of Christmas Day, 1868, and was released in February, 1869. The twenty remaining years of his life were spent chiefly in Mississippi.

[300] revision of posterity. The spirit of magnanimity, therefore, which breathes in his utterances and manifests itself in all his acts affecting the South during the last two years of his life, was as evidently honest as it was grateful to the feelings of those toward whom it was displayed.

It was certainly a gracious act toward the South—though unhappily it jarred upon the sensibilities of the people at the other extreme of the Union, and estranged from him the great body of his political friends—to propose to erase from the banners of the national army the mementos of the bloody internecine struggle, which might be regarded as assailing the pride or wounding the sensibilities of the Southern people. That proposal will never be forgotten by that people so long as the name of Charles Sumner lives in the memory of man. But, while it touched the heart of the South, and elicited her profound gratitude, her people would not have asked of the North such an act of self-renunciation.

Conscious that they themselves were animated by devotion to constitutional liberty, and that the brightest pages of history are replete with evidences of the depth and sincerity of that devotion, they cannot but cherish the recollections of sacrifices endured, the battles fought, and the victories won in defense of their hapless cause. And respecting, as all true and brave men must respect, the martial spirit with which the men of the North vindicated the integrity of the Union, and their devotion to the principles of human freedom, they do not ask, they do not wish the North to strike the mementos of her heroism and victory from either records or monuments or battle flags. They would rather that both sections should gather up the glories won by each section: not envious, but proud of each other, and regard them a common heritage of American valor.

Let us hope that future generations, when they remember the deeds of heroism and devotion done on both sides, will speak not of Northern prowess and Southern courage, but of the heroism, fortitude, and courage of Americans in a war of ideas; a war in which each section signalized its consecration to the principles, as each understood them, of American liberty and of the constitution received from their fathers.

It was my misfortune, perhaps my fault, personally never to have known this eminent philanthropist and statesman. The impulse was often strong upon me to go to him and offer him my [301]

A picture full of meaning to readers of Lamar's ‘eulogy’
Negroes at the ruins of the Richmond and Petersburg bridge at Richmond in April, 1865
Everyone knows that the care-free black people sitting before the unruffled pool are in some way connected with the wreck of war that looms behind. A viewpoint of this relation, as warmly human as it is broad and national, is taken by Lamar in his Eulogy of Sumner. Charles Sumner at the time of his death had for a generation been prominent in anti-slavery agitation. His oration in 1845 on The true grandeur of nations attracted attention even in England. With his election to the United States Senate, in 1851, at the age of forty, he stepped forward to a position of national leadership. Before and after the war few national figures aroused more opposition in the South than Charles Sumner. He created a storm in 1856 by his speech in the Senate on The crime against Kansas, in which he reflected on South Carolina and on Senator Butler from that State. Preston Brooks, a South Carolina Representative and a relative of Butler, found Sumner alone at his desk in the Senate Chamber, and beat him over the head with a cane until Sumner fell senseless to the floor, receiving spinal injuries from which he never entirely recovered. Sumner, when able some years later to return to his seat, continued his opposition to slavery, and was prominent in securing to the freedmen citizenship and the ballot. No later than 1874, true patriotism had succeeded passion so notably that Lamar's Eulogy was greeted with warm applause by representatives of all sections.

[302] hand, and my heart with it, and to express to him my thanks for his kind and considerate course toward the people with whom I am identified. If I did not yield to that impulse, it was because the thought occurred that other days were coming in which such a demonstration might be more opportune, and less liable to misconstruction. Suddenly, and without premonition, a day has come at last to which, for such a purpose, there is no to-morrow. My regret is therefore intensified by the thought that I failed to speak to him out of the fulness of my heart while there was yet time.

How often is it that death thus brings unavailingly back to our remembrance opportunities unimproved; in which generous overtures, prompted by the heart, remain unoffered; frank avowals which rose to the lips remain unspoken; and the injustice and wrong of bitter resentments remain unrepaired! Charles Sumner, in life, believed that all occasion for strife and distrust between the North and South had passed away, and that there no longer remained any cause for continued estrangement between these two sections of our common country. Are there not many of us who believe the same thing? Is not that the common sentiment—or if it is not, ought it not to be—of the great mass of our people, North and South? Bound to each other by a common constitution, destined to live together under a common government, forming unitedly but a single member of the great family of nations, shall we not now at last endeavor to grow toward each other once more in heart, as we are already indissolubly linked to each other in fortunes? Shall we not, over the honored remains of this great champion of human liberty, this feeling sympathizer with human sorrow, this earnest pleader for the exercise of human tenderness and charity, lay aside the concealments which serve only to perpetuate misunderstandings and distrust, and frankly confess that on both sides we most earnestly desire to be one; one not merely in community of language and literature and traditions and country; but more, and better than all that, one also in feeling and in heart? Am I mistaken in this?

Do the concealments of which I speak still cover animosities which neither time nor reflection nor the march of events have yet sufficed to subdue? I cannot believe it. Since I have been here I have watched with anxious scrutiny your sentiments as expressed not merely in public debate, but in the abandon [303]

Charles Sumner—the portrait by Brady The single-mindedness, the moral grandeur stamped upon Sumner's features are revealed in this lifelike portrait. Even those whose political convictions were different, though equally intense, could agree with the estimate of his biographer, Moorfield Storey: ‘Charles Sumner was a great man in his absolute fidelity to principle-his unflinching devotion to duty, his indifference to selfish considerations, his high scorn of anything petty or mean.’ He had convinced himself that suffrage was a right and not a privilege, and all the force of his intellect and character was devoted to accomplishing what he thought was right. The eulogy by Lamar pays him fitting tribute.

[304] of personal confidence. I know well the sentiments of these, my Southern brothers, whose hearts are so infolded that the feeling of each is the feeling of all; and I see on both sides only the seeming of a constraint, which each apparently hesitates to dismiss. The South—prostrate, exhausted, drained of her lifeblood, as well as of her material resources, yet still honorable and true—accepts the bitter award of the bloody arbitrament without reservation, resolutely determined to abide the result with chivalrous fidelity; yet, as if struck dumb by the magnitude of her reverses, she suffers on in silence. The North, exultant in her triumph, and elated by success, still cherishes, as we are assured, a heart full of magnanimous emotions toward her disarmed and discomfited antagonist; and yet, as if mastered by some mysterious spell, silencing her better impulses, her words and acts are the words and acts of suspicion and distrust.

Would that the spirit of the illustrious dead whom we lament to-day could speak from the grave to both parties to this deplorable discord in tones which should reach each and every heart throughout this broad territory: ‘My countrymen! know one another, and you will love one another.’

The new South

Delivered before the New England Society of New York City at the dinner of December 22, 1886. in response to an urgent invitation Henry W. Grady, then managing editor of the Atlanta constitution, attended the banquet, expecting to make a mere formal response to the toast of ‘the South.’ but the occasion proved inspiring. The Reverend T. Dewitt Talmage spoke on ‘old and New Fashions.’ near Grady sat General William Tecumseh Sherman, who had marched through his native State of Georgia with fire and sword. ‘when I found myself on my feet,’ he said, describing the scene on his return to Atlanta, ‘every nerve in my body was strung as tight as a fiddle-string, and all tingling. I knew then that I had a message for that assemblage, and as soon as I opened my mouth it came rushing out.’ thus the speech which stirred the whole country was an impromptu effort from beginning to end.



The lively scene in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, just after the war, is typical of early reconstruction in the South. The wagon is filled with a military band, the flags are regimental colors, and the vehicle itself is a military wagon. The music has attracted not only a crowd of boys and men, but a woman with a child in her arms is standing in the door of the bakery where cakes and pies are advertised for sale, and in the second-story window above her another woman is gazing timidly from behind the shutter. Evidently the candidate for the State Senate is making some progress. Reconstruction in the South was not so long a period as some may suppose. The first attempts to reorganize the state governments, like the one here pictured, were under the protection of Federal military forces. The measures taken were sometimes harsh, but the execution of martial law was honest. Most of the governments were left in the hands of civil authorities in 1868. ‘Carpet-baggers’ and ‘scalawags’ then held sway until the better class of citizens could come into control. But in 1874 their power was overthrown, except in Louisiana and South Carolina.

‘While other minds were occupying themselves with different theories of reconstruction.’: a scene contemporary with sumner's ‘uncompromising resolution’, referred to by Lamar


‘His trade destroyed’—illustrations for Grady's words

Southern express office, Richmond

Mill on James river and Kanawha canal

Gallego flour mills, James river

Gallego flour mills from the canal

The Richmond and Petersburg railroad station

Remains of cars near the station

These few glimpses of ruined industries in the single Southern city of Richmond prove how discouraging a reality confronted the Confederate soldier on his return home. Even the words of the orator Grady are faint in comparison with the almost hopeless future that lay before his people in 1865. All their movable capital was exhausted. The banks had failed. The State and Confederate bonds were worthless. The railroads were ruined; the cities disconsolate; the labor system revolutionized. But, as Henry Watterson says, the South “was poor and in bondage; she was set free, and she had to go to work; she went to work, and she is richer than ever before.”


‘He finds his house in ruins’—illustrations for Grady's words

Fire-swept homes

Nothing but bare walls

The path of destruction

Work of the flames

A vista of havoc

A once beautiful mansion

On this page appear homes and public buildings wrecked by the conflagration during the evacuation of Richmond on the night of April 2, 1865. The flames swept up from the river, threatening to devour the whole town. The Union troops, arriving about eight o'clock on the morning of April 3d, found the city a scene of wild confusion. They were ordered to press into service every able-bodied man. Only with great difficulty were the flames extinguished by two o'clock. A beautiful residence-district lay utterly devastated.


A desolate garden

In the spring of 1865, this charming Southern garden in Petersburg did not bloom as had been its wont. The thundering cannon of Grant's besieging army had laid in ruins many a noble old mansion. Even where the non-combatants could dwell in comparative safety, they suffered for want of the necessaries of life. In the whole of Virginia there was not enough of either meat or bread to sustain the Confederate troops that had suffered far more severely than the citizens during the unusually hard winter just past. But after the war, the leaders, whose homes were in ruins, did not sit down in despair. The cities of the Southland arose in new beauty, and the manifold problems of a new era were studied with a courage Grady does well to praise. From the exhaustion of merciless war, from wreckage such as this, the South rose renewed like the fabled phoenix.

A desolate garden: damaged home near Petersburg. (1)

A desolate garden: damaged home near Petersburg. (2)

[309] A few steps across the garden, toward the same roofless home of the page facing, opens sadder destruction of the exquisite Georgian architecture. Toward the close of the siege, many scenes like this awaited the army photographer. Homes that had once reposed peacefully in the light of luxury and sparkled with gaiety now stood in ruins, grim tokens that Sherman's terse definition of war is true. And yet the South fought on. Never has the world seen greater devotion to a cause. Grander than this devotion was the resolute meeting of the problems left by the war. An entirely new social order, in which Southern leaders profoundly disbelieved, might well have appalled the stoutest heart. But the present prosperity of the whole section proves that hearts were not appalled. The dauntless energy of the Anglo-Saxon has gained again a victory more precious than any won in war.


The new South ...

My friends, Dr. Talmage has told you that the typical American is yet to come. Let me tell you that he has already come. Great types, like valuable plants, are slow to flower and fruit. But from the union of these colonists, Puritans and Cavaliers, from the straightening of their purposes and the crossing of their blood, slow perfecting through a century, came he who stands as the first typical American, the first who comprehended within himself all the strength and gentleness, all the majesty and grace of this republic—Abraham Lincoln. He was the sum of Puritan and Cavalier, for in his ardent nature were fused the virtues of both, and in the depths of his great soul the faults of both were lost. He was greater than Puritan, greater than Cavalier, in that he was American, and that in his honest form were first gathered the vast and thrilling forces of his ideal government—charging it with such tremendous meaning and elevating it so much above human suffering that martyrdom, though infamously aimed, came as a fitting crown to a life consecrated from the cradle to human liberty. Let us, each cherishing his traditions and honoring his fathers, build with reverent hands to the type of this simple but sublime life, in which all types are honored, and in our common glory as Americans there will be plenty and to spare for your forefathers and for mine.

Dr. Talmage has drawn for you, with a master's hand, the picture of your returning armies. He has told you how, in the pomp and circumstance of war, they came back to you, marching with proud and victorious tread, reading their glory in a nation's eyes! Will you bear with me while I tell you of another army that sought its home at the close of the late war—an army that marched home in defeat and not in victory—in pathos and not in splendor, but in glory that equaled yours, and to hearts as loving as ever welcomed heroes home! Let me picture to you the footsore Confederate soldier, as buttoning up in his faded gray jacket the parole which was to bear testimony to his children of his fidelity and faith, he turned his face southward from Appomattox in April, 1865. Think of him as ragged, half-starved, heavy-hearted, enfeebled by want and wounds; having fought to exhaustion, he surrenders his gun, wrings the hand of his comrades in silence, and lifting his tearstained and pallid face for the last time to the graves that dot the old Virginia hills, pulls his gray cap over his brow and [311]

‘This hero in gray with the heart of gold’ This portrait of a young Confederate volunteer caught the eye of the New York sculptor Ruckstuhl, while he was designing the magnificent monument to be erected in Baltimore by the Maryland Society of the Daughters of the Confederacy. The photograph was taken in April, 1861, when the boy soldier, Henry Howe Cook, had been promoted at the age of seventeen from the ranks of Company D, First Tennessee Regiment, to a lieutenancy in Company F of the Forty-fourth Tennessee, in B. R. Johnson's brigade. At the outbreak of the war proper arms were scarcer in the Confederacy than uniforms. Private Cook's trig costume contrasts sharply with the big hunting-knife and the old-fashioned pistol with its ramrod and percussion trigger. His glance is direct and fearless; yet he is almost too young to look blood-thirsty, even with the lethal weapon thrust in his belt. Working in the spirit which Grady so eloquently describes, he continued to rise after the war was over. As a lawyer he was eminently successful and in after years was honored by the people of Tennessee with the chancellorship in its court system.

[312] begins the slow and painful journey. What does he find—let me ask you who went to your homes eager to find, in the welcome you had justly earned, full payment for four years sacrifice—what does he find when, having followed the battle-stained cross against overwhelming odds, dreading death not half so much as surrender, he reaches the home he left so prosperous and beautiful? He finds his house in ruins, his farm devastated, his slaves free, his stock killed, his barn empty, his trade destroyed, his money worthless; his social system, feudal in its magnificence, swept away; his people without law or legal status; his comrades slain, and the burdens of others heavy on his shoulders. Crushed by defeat, his very traditions gone; without money, credit, employment, material, or training; and besides all this, confronted with the gravest problem that ever met human intelligence—the establishing of a status for the vast body of his liberated slaves.

What does he do—this hero in gray with a heart of gold? Does he sit down in sullenness and despair? Not for a day. Surely God, who had stripped him of his prosperity, inspired him in his adversity. As ruin was never before so overwhelming, never was restoration swifter. The soldier stepped from the trenches into the furrow; horses that had charged Federal guns marched before the plow, and fields that ran red with human blood in April were green with the harvest in June; women reared in luxury cut up their dresses and made breeches for their husbands, and, with a patience and a heroism that fit women always as a garment, gave their hands to work. There was little bitterness in all this. Cheerfulness and frankness prevailed. ‘Bill Arp’ struck the key-note when he said: ‘Well, I killed as many of them as they did of me, and now I'm going to work.’ Or the soldier returning home after defeat and roasting some corn on the roadside, who made the remark to his comrades: ‘You may leave the South if you want to, but I am going to Sandersville, kiss my wife and raise a crop, and if the Yankees fool with me any more, I'll whip 'em again.’ I want to say to General Sherman—who is considered an able man in our parts, though some people think he is kind of careless about fire—that from the ashes he left us in 1864 we have raised a brave and beautiful city; that somehow or other we have caught the sunshine in the bricks and mortar of our homes, and have builded therein not one ignoble prejudice or memory. [313]

‘His social system, feudal in its magnificence, swept away’: Wade hampton's garden in Columbia, South Carolina The plantation of the Hamptons, one of the finest in the whole South, fittingly illustrates Grady's allusion. The Wade Hampton here spoken of was not a states-right's man, but when secession was decided on he entered energetically into the preparations for war. ‘Hampton's Legion,’ raised and equipped from his private wealth, was prominent throughout the conflict. Hampton himself fought with them at Bull Run and up to the time he was wounded at Fair Oaks, in the Peninsula campaign. He was in the Gettysburg campaign as a leader of cavalry, being wounded three times in the battle. In 1864 he became especially distinguished for his fights against Sheridan in the Shenandoah. The ability displayed there was rewarded by Lee, who made him commander of all the cavalry in the Army of Northern Virginia. Hampton fought to the end, commanding the cavalry in Johnston's army at the time of his surrender. Even more creditable was his record after the war. Returning to the beautiful home where he had been reared in the ‘feudal magnificence’ of the antebellum system, he devoted his energies to rebuilding the South and securing full acceptance of the issues of the war. In 1876 he became Governor of South Carolina, and from 1878 to 1891 served as United States Senator. His career bears out Grady's speech.


But in all this what have we accomplished? What is the sum of our work? We have found out that in the general summary, the free negro counts more than he did as a slave. We have planted the schoolhouse on the hilltop and made it free to white and black. We have sowed towns and cities in the place of theories, and put business above politics. We have challenged your spinners in Massachusetts and your iron-makers in Pennsylvania. We have learned that the $400,000,--000 annually received from our cotton crop will make us rich, when the supplies that make it are home-raised. We have reduced the commercial rate of interest from twenty-four to six per cent, and are floating four per cent bonds. We have learned that one northern immigrant is worth fifty foreigners, and have smoothed the path to the southward, wiped out the place where Mason and Dixon's line used to be, and hung out the latchstring to you and yours. We have reached the point that marks perfect harmony in every household, when the husband confesses that the pies which his wife cooks are as good as those his mother used to bake; and we admit that the sun shines as brightly and the moon as softly as it did ‘before the war.’ We have established thrift in city and country. We have fallen in love with work. We have restored comfort to homes from which culture and elegance never departed. We have let economy take root and spread among us as rank as the crabgrass which sprung from Sherman's cavalry camps, until we are ready to lay odds on the Georgia Yankee as he manufactures relics of the battlefield in a one-story shanty and squeezes pure olive oil out of his cotton seed, against any down-easter that ever swapped wooden nutmegs for flannel sausages in the valleys of Vermont. Above all, we know that we have achieved in these ‘piping times of peace’ a fuller independence for the South than that which our fathers sought to win in the forum by their eloquence or compel in the field by their swords.

It is a rare privilege, sir, to have had part, however humble, in this work. Never was nobler duty confided to human hands than the uplifting and the upbuilding of the prostrate and bleeding South—misguided, perhaps, but beautiful in her suffering, and honest, brave, and generous always. In the record of her social, industrial, and political illustration we await with confidence the verdict of the world.

But what of the negro? Have we solved the problem he [315]

Shot-riddled homes in Fredericksburg, Virginia How widespread was the condition of affairs described by Grady as confronting the Confederate soldier on his return home, appears in such pictures. The havoc was the result of Burnside's bombardment of December 11, 1862. When the Confederate sharpshooters from the roofs and windows of the houses in Fredericksburg opened fire on the pontoniers, the Federal artillery at once returned the fire, at 7 A. M., and continued it incessantly until one o'clock in the afternoon. Despite a bombardment which laid the town in ruins, volunteers from the Seventh Michigan and Nineteenth Massachusetts finally had to be sent over to drive off the stubborn sharpshooters.

[316] presents, or progressed in honor and equity toward solution? Let the record speak to the point. No section shows a more prosperous laboring population than the negroes of the South, none in fuller sympathy with the employing and land-owning class. He shares our school fund, has the fullest protection of our laws and the friendship of our people. Self-interest, as well as honor, demand that he should have this. Our future, our very existence depends upon our working out this problem in full and exact justice. We understand that when Lincoln signed the emancipation proclamation, your victory was assured, for he then committed you to the cause of human liberty, against which the arms of man cannot prevail—while those of our statesmen who trusted to make slavery the corner-stone of the Confederacy doomed us to defeat as far as they could, committing us to a cause that reason could not defend or the sword maintain in the sight of advancing civilization.

Had Mr. Toombs said, which he did not say, ‘that he would call the roll of his slaves at the foot of Bunker Hill,’ he would have been foolish, for he might have known that whenever slavery became entangled in war it must perish, and that the chattel in human flesh ended forever in New England when your fathers—not to be blamed for parting with what didn't pay—sold their slaves to our fathers—not to be praised for knowing a paying thing when they saw it. The relations of the Southern people with the negro are close and cordial. We remember with what fidelity for four years he guarded our defenseless women and children, whose husbands and fathers were fighting against his freedom. To his eternal credit be it said that whenever he struck a blow for his own liberty he fought in open battle, and when at last he raised his black and humble hands that the shackles might be struck off, those hands were innocent of wrong against his helpless charges, and worthy to be taken in loving grasp by every man who honors loyalty and devotion. Ruffians have maltreated him, rascals have misled him, philanthropists established a bank for him, but the South, with the North, protests against injustice to this simple and sincere people. To liberty and enfranchisement is as far as the law can carry the negro. The rest must be left to conscience and common sense. It must be left to those among whom his lot is cast, with whom he is indissolubly connected, and whose prosperity depends upon their possessing his intelligent sympathy [317]

What the Confederate soldier found—a Mississippi valley mill This gloomy scene is a reminder of the fate that befell the Mississippi valley and many another fertile region of the South. Western raids throughout the war destroyed hundreds of miles of railroad, burned the cars, and blew up the locomotives, fell upon tanneries and shoe-factories, wrecked arsenals, captured commissary stores, put the torch to cotton-factories, and in every possible way crippled the resources of the South for continuing the struggle. General Grant tells of an incident at his capture of Jackson, Mississippi, on May 14, 1863. Sherman was instructed to destroy ‘the railroads, bridges, factories, workshops, arsenals, and everything valuable for the support of the enemy.’ The two generals went into a very valuable cotton-factory, where the machinery was running at full speed and all the hands were at work, as if the city had not fallen into the hands of the enemy. While the military leaders stood there, hundreds of yards of canvas rolled out from the looms with the stamp of the Confederate Quartermaster's Department upon it. It was to be used in tents. After looking on the busy scene for a few minutes, the order was given for the place to be vacated, and within an hour the building and its warehouses were in flames. The next day the work of destruction was so thoroughly accomplished that ‘Jackson as a railroad center or Government depot of stores and military factories,’ it was reported, could be of little use for at least six months.

[318] and confidence. Faith has been kept with him, in spite of calumnious assertions to the contrary by those who assume to speak for us or by frank opponents. Faith will be kept with him in the future, if the South holds her reason and integrity.

But have we kept faith with you? In the fullest sense, yes. When Lee surrendered—I don't say when Johnston surrendered, because I understand he still alludes to the time when he met General Sherman last as the time when he determined to abandon any further prosecution of the struggle—when Lee surrendered, I say, and Johnston quit, the South became, and has since been, loyal to the Union. We fought hard enough to know that we were whipped, and in perfect frankness accepted as final the arbitrament of the sword to which we had appealed. The South found her jewel in the toad's head of defeat. The shackles that had held her in narrow limitations fell forever when the shackles of the negro slave were broken. Under the old regime the negroes were slaves to the South; the South was a slave to the system. The old plantation, with its simple police regulations and feudal habit, was the only type possible under slavery. Thus was gathered in the hands of a splendid and chivalric oligarchy the substance that should have been diffused among the people, as the rich blood, under certain artificial conditions, is gathered at the heart, filling that with affluent rapture, but leaving the body chill and colorless.

The old South rested everything on slavery and agriculture, unconscious that these could neither give nor maintain healthy growth. The new South presents a perfect democracy, the oligarchs leading in the popular movement—a social system compact and closely knitted, less splendid on the surface, but stronger at the core—a hundred farms for every plantation, fifty homes for every palace-and a diversified industry that meets the complex needs of this complex age.

The new South is enamored of her new work. Her soul is stirred with the breath of a new life. The light of a grander day is falling fair on her face. She is thrilling with the consciousness of growing power and prosperity. As she stands upright, full-statured and equal among the people of the earth, breathing the keen air and looking out upon the expanded horizon, she understands that her emancipation came because through the inscrutable wisdom of God her honest purpose was crossed and her brave armies were beaten. [319]

A colonial mansion in ruins-1865 Grady's returning Confederate soldier was a private in the ranks. But Southern officers, as well, rich and poor alike, found desolation at home in 1865. Compare with the preceding scenes the ruins of this handsome residence of the Pinckneys, one of the most distinguished Charleston families. It stood in the middle of a whole square, commanding a fine view of Charleston Harbor. When James Glenn arrived in 1743 as royal governor, he selected this mansion as his official residence. It was occupied in succession by Governors Glenn, Lyttleton, Boone, and Lord Charles Montague, while Charles Pinckney was in Europe and his son was attaining majority. During those years there were many stately dinners here. These ruins were the scene of Charleston's gayest colonial life.


This is said in no spirit of time-serving or apology. The South has nothing for which to apologize. She believes that the late struggle between the States was war and not rebellion, revolution and not conspiracy, and that her convictions were as honest as yours. I should be unjust to the dauntless spirit of the South and to my own convictions if I did not make this plain in this presence. The South has nothing to take back. In my native town of Athens is a monument that crowns its central hill—a plain, white shaft. Deep cut into its shining side is a name dear to me above the names of men, that of a brave and simple man who died in a brave and simple faith. Not for all the glories of New England, from Plymouth Rock all the way, would I exchange the heritage he left me in his soldier's death. To the foot of that shaft I shall send my children's children to reverence him who ennobled their name with his heroic blood. But, sir, speaking from the shadow of that memory which I honor as I do nothing else on earth, I say that the cause in which he suffered and for which he gave his life was adjudged by higher and fuller wisdom than his or mine, and I am glad that the omniscient God held the balance of battle in His Almighty hand and that human slavery was swept forever from American soil—the American. Union was saved from the wreck of war.

This message, Mr. President, comes to you from consecrated ground. Every foot of soil about the city in which I live is sacred as a battle-ground of the republic. Every hill that invests it is hallowed to you by the blood of your brothers who died for your victory, and doubly hallowed to us by the blood of those who died hopeless, but undaunted, in defeat—sacred soil to all of us, rich with memories that make us purer and stronger and better, silent but stanch witnesses in its red desolation of the matchless valor of American hearts and the deathless glory of American arms,—speaking an eloquent witness, in its white peace and prosperity, to the indissoluble union of American States and the imperishable brotherhood of the American people.

Now, what answer has New England to this message? Will she permit the prejudice of war to remain in the hearts of the conquerors, when it has died in the hearts of the conquered? Will she transmit this prejudice to the next generation, that in their hearts, which never felt the generous ardor of conflict, it [321]

The Pinckney house in Charleston, South Carolina Here lived from 1769 the noted Charles Cotesworth Pinckney, after his return from school at Westminster and Oxford. When the Revolution began he discontinued his practice of law and led a provincial regiment. For two years he was one of Washingon's aidesde-camp. In 1780 his wife was evicted from the mansion by British troops when Sir Henry Clinton and Lord Cornwallis occupied the town. The history of his dwelling-place terminated in December, 1861. A fire began on a wharf by the Cooper River, where some Negroes were cooking their supper. It was blown into a hay store near by; it then spread swiftly before the gale to the banks of the Ashley, leaving behind nothing but a smoking wilderness of ruins. The Pinckney mansion stood in its path. The able-bodied men of the town were in service or drilling in the camps at the race-course, and little could be done to check its course till it reached the Ashley River.

[322] may perpetuate itself? Will she withhold, save in strained courtesy, the hand which straight from his soldier's heart Grant offered to Lee at Appomattox? Will she make the vision of a restored and happy people, which gathered above the couch of your dying captain, filling his heart with grace, touching his lips with praise, and glorifying his path to the grave,—will she make this vision on which the last sight of his expiring soul breathed a benediction, a cheat and delusion? If she does, the South, never abject in asking for comradeship, must accept with dignity its refusal; but if she does not,—if she accepts in frankness and sincerity this message of goodwill and friendship, then will the prophecy of Webster, delivered in this very society forty years ago amid tremendous applause, be verified in its fullest and final sense, when he said: ‘Standing hand to hand and clasping hands, we should remain united as we have been for sixty years, citizens of the same country, members of the same government, united all, united now, and united forever.’ There have been difficulties, contentions, and controversies, but I tell you that in my judgment
Those opposed eyes,
Which like the meteors of a troubled heaven,
All of one nature, of one substance bred,
Did lately meet in th' intestine shock,
Shall now, in mutual, well-beseeming ranks,
March all one way.

Joined the blues

The poem was greatly liked by General ‘Joe’ Wheeler, and won for the author his close friendship.

Says Stonewall Jackson to ‘Little Phil’: “Phil, have you heard the news?
Why, our ‘Joe’ Wheeler— ‘ Fighting Joe’ —has gone and joined the blues.

“Ay, no mistake—I saw him come — I heard the oath he took—
And you'll find it duly entered up in yon great Record Book. [323]

‘From the ashes left us in 1864’

The ruins of Atlanta here are the very scenes to which Grady was referring. The destruction of its industries Sherman declared to be a military necessity. Atlanta contained the largest foundries and machine-shops south of Richmond. It formed a railroad center for the central South, where provisions might be gathered and forwarded to the armies at the front. To destroy the Atlanta shops and railroads would therefore cripple the resources of the Confederacy. Railroads had been torn up to the south of the city even before its capture on September 2, 1864. But it was not until November 15th, when Sherman had completed all his arrangements for the march to the sea, that on every road leading into Atlanta the ties were burned, the rails torn up and then twisted so as to render them permanently useless. The buildings were first burned and the walls afterward razed to the ground. In the fire thus started the exploding of ammunition could be heard all night in the midst of the ruins. The flames soon spread to a block of stores and soon the heart of the city was burned out completely.

Ruins of Atlanta (1).

Ruins of Atlanta (2).


Ruins in Richmond as the war was drawing to a close

These faithful reproductions show the desolation war leaves in its track. The paper mill is a mass of ruins, with no power to turn the burnt and broken rollers. The railroad track is a heap of twisted wreckage, with the blasted engine hopelessly beyond repair. Of the bridge nothing remains but a row of granite pillars and the misplaced and useless signals. These views exhibit the stupendous task that all over the South awaited the returning Confederate solider who had received his parole at the final surrenders and begun life again.

A Richmond paper mill in 1865: on the page facing the same spot forty-six years later

Train in Richmond in 1865: the end of its service

Richmond in 1865: the useless signals


Forty-six years after (1911)-the Richmond paper mill and railroad rebuilt
‘it is A rare privilege, Sir, to have had any part, however humble, in this work’

Below, Grady's declaration finds a vivid example. On the exact spot shown in the central picture of the opposite page has risen a modern mill to replace the blackened ruins. In place of the twisted rails are three will graded tracks. A reeforced concrete bridge replaces the broken causeway. In the distance the tall stacks of a busy city rise against the sky. The South is once more prosperous. It sons have attacked the problems of the new era and have placed their section upon a basis for permanent advancement. The currents of national life are flowing through every part of its spacious territory, and it feels itself an integral and inseparable part of the mighty American republic. The hundreds of scenes in this and the preceding volumes have been from photographs taken in war time. Now that the volume is ended and the records of the campaigns are closed, an exception is made to show what the South has accomplished in less than half a century. Proud as all are of the devotion and courage, of the South during the four years of war, prouder still should every American be of the splendid record of her peaceful victories in the forty years succeeding. For she has wrung victory from defeat and has provided for the whole world the spectacle of an enduring triumph—a progress without parallel.


Yes, “Phil,” it is a change since then (we give the Lord due thanks)
When “Joe” came swooping like a hawk upon your Sherman's flanks!

Why, “Phil,” you knew the trick yourself—but “Joe” had all the points— And we've yet to hear his horses died of stiff or rusty joints!

But what of that?—the deed I saw to-day in yonder town Leads all we did and all “Joe” did in troopings up and down;

For, “Phil,” that oath shall be the heal of many a bleeding wound,
And many a Southland song shall yet to that same oath be tuned!

‘The oath “Joe” swore has done the work of thrice a score of years—
Ay, more than oath—he swore away mistrust and hate and tears!’

‘Yes, yes,’ says ‘Phil,’ he was, indeed, a right good worthy foe,
And well he knew, in those fierce days, to give us blow for blow.

When “Joe” came round to pay a call—the commissaries said—
Full many a swearing, grumbling “Yank” went supperless to bed:

He seemed to have a pesky knack—so Sherman used to say— Of calling, when he should by rights be ninety miles away!

‘Come, Stonewall, put your hand in mine,—Joe's sworn old Samuel's oath—
We're never North or South again—he kissed the Book for both!’

John Jerome Rooney. [327]

‘Joe's sworn old Samuel's oath’ A post-bellum portrait of General Joseph Wheeler has been chosen to appear here as well as of ‘that loyal old Reb, Fitzhugh Lee’—in order to illustrate closely the poem. General Joseph Wheeler, a native of Georgia, was a brilliant Confederate cavalry leader in the Civil War. He graduated from West Point in 1859, entered the Confederate service in April, 1861, and fought at the head of a brigade at Shiloh. In the same year he was transferred to the cavalry. In 1863, as major-general, he commanded the cavalry at the battles of Chickamauga and Chattanooga, and protected Bragg's retreat southward. In 1864 he obstructed Sherman in his advance on Atlanta, as alluded to in the poem, and in the march to the sea. In 1865, as lieutenant-general, he commanded the cavalry in Johnston's army up to the surrender.



Wheeler's brigade at Santiago

'Neath the lances of the tropic sun
The column is standing ready,
Awaiting the fateful command of one
Whose word will ring out
To an answering shout
To prove it alert and steady.
And a stirring chorus all of them sung
With singleness of endeavor,
Though some to The Bonny blue flag had swung
And some to The Union for ever.

The order came sharp through the desperate air
And the long ranks rose to follow,
Till their dancing banners shone more fair
Than the brightest ray
Of the Cuban day
On the hill and jungled hollow;
And to Maryland some in the days gone by
Had fought through the combat's rumble,
And some for Freedom's battle-cry
Had seen the broad earth crumble.

Full many a widow weeps in the night
Who had been a man's wife in the morning;
For the banners we loved we bore to the height
Where the enemy stood
As a hero should,
His valor his country adorning;
But drops of pride with your tears of grief,
Ye American women, mix ye!
For the North and South, with a Southern chief,
Kept time to the tune of Dixie.


‘For the North and the South, with a Southron chief, kept time to the tune of Dixie

These two figures of 1861 and 1865 have a peculiar appropriateness for Wallace Rice's ‘Wheeler's Brigade at Santiago.’ They recall in detail the fullness of the warlike preparations in those distant days. The Union soldier is equipped with new uniform and shining musket, ready to repel any invader of the Nation's capital. More than once before the close of hostilities such services had been needed in the circle of forts that surrounded the city. The officer stands erect with the intensity and eagerness that characterized Southern troops in battle. A generation later, the Spanish war of 1898 became a magnificent occasion for proof that the hostile relations and feelings of the 1860's had melted away. Those who had once stood in opposing ranks, and their sons with them, in ‘98 marched and fought shoulder to shoulder, inspired by love of the same country and devoted to the same high principles of human freedom.

Union soldier: on guard over a prisoner in Washington 1865

Confederate officer: of the Washington artillery of New Orleans 1861



Those rebel flags

‘Discussed by ‘one of the Yanks ’’ is the author's subtitle. The occasion of the poem was the agitation for the return to the States from whose troops they had been captured of the Confederate battle-flags in the keeping of the war Department at Washington. A bill effecting this was passed without a word of debate on February 24, 1905. for an account of the movement see the Introduction to this volume.

Shall we send back the Johnnies their bunting,
In token, from Blue to the Gray,
That ‘Brothers-in-blood’ and ‘Good Hunting’
Shall be our new watchword to-day?
In olden times knights held it knightly
To return to brave foemen the sword;
Will the Stars and the Stripes gleam less brightly
If the old Rebel flags are restored?

Call it sentiment, call it misguided
To fight to the death for ‘a rag’;
Yet, trailed in the dust, derided,
The true soldier still loves his flag!
Does love die, and must honor perish
When colors and causes are lost?
Lives the soldier who ceases to cherish
The blood-stains and valor they cost?

Our battle-fields, safe in the keeping
Of Nature's kind, fostering care,
Are blooming,—our heroes are sleeping,—
And peace broods perennial there.
All over our land rings the story
Of loyalty, fervent and true;
‘One flag,’ and that flag is ‘Old Glory,’
Alike for the Gray and the Blue.

Why cling to those moth-eaten banners?
What glory or honor to gain
While the nation is shouting hosannas,
Uniting her sons to fight Spain?
Time is ripe, and the harvest worth reaping,
Send the Johnnies their flags f. o. b., [331]

‘That loyal “old reb” : Fitzhugh Lee Since Jewett's lines apply to the Spanish War period, a portrait of ‘Fitz’ Lee has been selected, taken many years after his days in the saddle as a Confederate cavalry leader. The nephew of Robert E. Lee was likewise a graduate of West Point, and was instructor in cavalry there from May, 1860, to the outbreak of the war. In nearly all the movements of the Army of Northern Virginia, he was a dashing cavalry leader. From March, 1865, to his surrender to General Meade at Farmville, April 7th, he was commander of all the cavalry of the army. That he was ‘loyal’ appeared as early as 1874, when he delivered a patriotic address at Bunker Hill. His attitude on the return of Confederate battle-flags during his term as Governor of Virginia (1886-1890) is touched on in the Introduction to this volume. He served his country as consul-general at Havana from 1896, whence he was recalled in April, 1898, to be appointed major-general of volunteers and given command of the Seventh Army Corps. He too had ‘joined the Blues.’ Moreover, after the war he was made military governor of Havana and subsequently placed in command of the Department of Missouri. His death in 1905 was mourned nationally.


Address to the care and safe keeping Of that loyal ‘old Reb,’ Fitzhugh Lee!

Yes, send back the Johnnies their bunting,
With greetings from Blue to the Gray;
We are ‘Brothers-in-blood,’ and ‘Good Hunting’
Is America's watchword to-day.

One country1

The author of this poem, it should be noted, is a native of South Carolina, the first state to secede from the Union, and has long been connected with the Atlanta constitution.

After all,
One country, brethren! We must rise or fall
With the Supreme Republic. We must be
The makers of her immortality,—
Her freedom, fame,
Her glory or her shame:
Liegemen to God and fathers of the free!

After all—
Hark! from the heights the clear, strong, clarion call
And the command imperious: ‘Stand forth,
Sons of the South and brothers of the North!
Stand forth and be
As one on soil and sea—
Your country's honor more than empire's worth!’

After all,
'Tis Freedom wears the loveliest coronal;
Her brow is to the morning; in the sod
She breathes the breath of patriots; every clod
Answers her call
And rises like a wall
Against the foes of liberty and God!


‘After all—one country’

Here in Charleston, under the sunlight of a cloudless April day, rest the Parrott guns that from Morris Island pulverized the walls of Sumter, that hurled shot and shell across the bay—now silent, ‘after all.’ Flecks of shade from the live-oak leaves fall upon the polished barrels that for eighteen months had roared upon the distant foe. Now the silence is broken only by the rustle of the foliage above. Below, the daisies are beginning to hide the newly springing grass. The Stars and Stripes draped above the nearest gun-carriage is once more the flag of the whole American people. Peace has indeed come, and all over the land thanksgiving is ascending like an incense from hearts that have known the anguish of endless separation and the bitterness of unavailing sorrow—thanksgiving, too, for the issue of the conflict, which determined that America should forever wear the coronal of freedom and lead in the vanguard of human liberty.

Charleston: the Parrott guns that from Morris Island pulverized the walls of Sumter.

Although taken long before the days of moving-picture films, this series of photographs preserves the progression of the celebration on April 14, 1865—the fourth anniversary of the evacuation of Sumter. The evening before, the news of Lee's surrender had reached Charleston and made the occasion one of national thanksgiving. The city was gay with flags; patriotic bands filled the air with music, and Dahlgren's fleet opened the day with the full national salute of twenty-one guns from every ship in the harbor. In Fort Sumter the Reverend Matthias Harris, who had helped to raise the flag over the fort, four years before, opened the services with prayer. Dr. Richard S. Storrs read that ever-beautiful passage beginning: ‘When the Lord turned again the captivity of Zion, we were like them that dream.’

Raising the national flag in Sumter just four years after its evacuation (1).

Raising the national flag in Sumter just four years after its evacuation (2).

Raising the national flag in Sumter just four years after its evacuation (3).

Raising the national flag in Sumter just four years after its evacuation (4).


Precisely at noon, General Anderson raised with his own hands the flag which had been lowered in 1861. Long-continued shouting and the boom of guns from every Fort about the harbor was the salute to the banner that was held to be a symbol of the restored Union. In the address of Henry Ward Beecher the feeling of brotherhood to the South was prominent. These were his closing words, ‘We offer to the President of these United States our solemn congratulations that God has sustained his life and health under the unparalleled burdens and sufferings of four bloody years, and permitted him to behold this auspicious consummation of that national unity for which he has waited with so much patience and fortitude, and for which he has labored with such disinterested wisdom.’

Henry Ward Beecher's speech of brotherhood on April 14, 1865 (1).

Henry Ward Beecher's speech of brotherhood on April 14, 1865 (2).

Henry Ward Beecher's speech of brotherhood on April 14, 1865 (3).

Henry Ward Beecher's speech of brotherhood on April 14, 1865 (4).



When peace dwelt again upon Fort Sumter: the crumbled walls from the sand bar—1865 A spectator before that irregular pile of debris might never imagine that in 1861 Fort Sumter was a formidable work. Its walls then rose to a height of forty feet above high-water. Constructed of the best Carolina gray brick, laid in a mortar of pounded oyster-shells and cement, their thickness of five to ten feet made the stronghold seem impregnable. Despite the appearance in the picture, it proved so. The attack that began the war did very little damage, beyond the burning of the barracks. Two years later, Rear-Admiral Samuel F. Du Pont led a naval attack that was expected to capture the Fort with little delay; yet the heavy bombardment made almost no impression. The ironclad that was nearest Sumter, the Keokuk, struck ninety times, was so badly injured that it sank the next morning. The Weehawken was hit fifty-three times; the Passaic thirty-five times, the Montauk fourteen times, the Patapsco, the fourth vessel in line, forty-seven times; and so on through the entire fleet. The fort, on the other hand, was hardly injured. At one point, where an 11-inch and a 15-inch shell struck at the same point at the same time, the wall was completely breached: on the outside [337] appeared a crater six feet high and eight feet wide. But the destruction shown in the picture was wrought by the bombardment from the land-batteries four months later. General Gillmore's guns opened on August 17th. Major John Johnson in Battles and leaders makes this report of the effect of Gillmore's operations and of the work of the defenders:
When demolished by landbat-teries of unprecedented range, the Fort endured for more than eighteen months their almost constant fire, and for a hundred days and nights their utmost power until it could with truth be said that it at last tired out, and in this way silenced, the great guns that once had silenced it. From having been a desolate ruin, a shapeless pile of shattered walls and casemates, showing here and there the guns disabled and half-buried in splintered wrecks of carriages, its mounds of rubbish fairly reeking with the smoke and smell of powder, Fort Sumter under fire was transformed within a year into a powerful earthwork, impregnable to assault, and even supporting the other works at the entrance of Charleston harbor with six guns of the heaviest caliber.

Above, it is a monument to the wastefulness of warfare.


Within the deserted fort-1865 Here is the desolation inside the shattered walls of Sumter. The celebration of raising the flag on April 14, 1865, is now in the past. The benches that had been crowded with listeners eager to catch every word of the address by Henry Ward Beecher are now empty. The pavilion in which he spoke is no longer gay with flags. The staff from which ‘Old Glory’ had floated to the applause of thousands stands bare. Beyond are the shapeless ruins made by Gillmore's guns. Out in the bay no ships dressed in flags are to be seen. For the whole nation is in mourning. On the very evening of the flag-raising the bullet of Booth had laid low the man through whose patience and statesmanship the Sumter celebration had become possible. Trials more searching than those of war awaited his sorrowing people.


1 from ‘comes one with a song,’ by frank Lebby Stanton; copyright, 1898. used by special permission of the publisher, the Bobbs-Merrill Company.

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