Monthly Archives

March 2022


Neo-Abolitionist Historiography

  From our 2008 Summer School, Northern Anti-Slavery Rhetoric In some respects, the title of this lecture, “Post 1960’s Neo-Abolitionist Historiography,” is a lie.  I’m actually going to start earlier than the 1960’s, but I promise you we’re not going to lengthen it out any more than that. A lot of this is going to be a cautionary tale for…
John Devanny
March 31, 2022

The Beer Thief

The little town of Canton, just off of I-20 in east Texas, is home to the world’s largest flea market. Thousands of booths and vendors have been selling their wares in that 400 acre field for about a century now. A man with a few dollars in his pocket can find stuff he never needed and never knew he wanted…
Brandon Meeks
March 30, 2022


Part 4 in Clyde Wilson’s series “African-American Slavery in Historical Perspective.” Read Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3. Many Americans doubtless tend to assume a rosy view of emancipation, of brave boys in blue rushing into the arms of newly freed slaves to celebrate the day of Jubilee while handing out Hershey bars to children. Nothing could be further…
Clyde Wilson
March 29, 2022

The 1862 Louisiana Native Guard

In April 1861, a public meeting was held in New Orleans, Louisiana to discuss Governor Thomas O. Moore's call for volunteers to defend the South against the invading Union army as the War Between the States was just beginning. This particular meeting did not consist of white men, however. It was led and attended by what the newspapers called the…
Shane Anderson
March 28, 2022

Music in Camp

Originally published in 1898 in The Ridpath Library of Universal Literature, Vol. XXII by John Clark Ridpath THOMPSON, John Reuben, an American journalist and poet, born at Richmond, Va., October 23, 1823; died in New York, April 30, 1872. He was graduated at the University of Virginia in l845, studied law, and in 1847 became editor of the Southern Literary…
John Clark Ridpath
March 25, 2022
BlogReview Posts

The Dreadful Frauds

A review of The Dreadful Frauds: Critical Race Theory and Identity Politics, (Shotwell Publishing, 2022) by Philip Leigh In one hundred pages, author Philip Leigh has given us a scathing indictment of Critical Race Theory, Identity Politics, and the corrupting influences of both on America’s two hundred and fifty year meritocracy. It exposes the power politics of the Victimhood Olympics…
H.V. Traywick, Jr.
March 24, 2022

Lincoln, Putin, and Yankee Hyopcrisy

At the writing of this article, the ongoing struggle between Ukraine and Russia has most people’s attention.  While prayerfully hoping for a peaceful settlement of this conflict, it is difficult to overlook the actual hypocrisy of the Federal government and U. S. media as they deal with the reported issues such as “saving the union,” “secession,” and “war crimes.”  It…

A War to Free the Slaves?

Part 3 in Clyde Wilson's series "African-American Slavery in Historical Perspective." Read Part 1 and Part 2. In 1798 Thomas Jefferson wrote to John Taylor: “It is true that we are completely under the saddle of Massachusetts and Connecticut, and that they ride us very hard, cruelly insulting our feelings as well as exhausting our strength and substance.” He added…
Clyde Wilson
March 22, 2022

Podcast Episode 301

The Week in Review at the Abbeville Institute, March 14-18, 2022 Topics: Southern History, Slavery, Lincoln, the War, Segregation, Southern Culture, Southern Tradition
Brion McClanahan
March 19, 2022

Segregation on Track: Plessy v. Ferguson

In most minds today, the word segregation and the term “Jim Crow” immediately evoke a picture of the American South at the start of the Twentieth Century. It is, however, a false image that has been carefully crafted over the years to mask the actual genesis of the legal separation of black and white races in public facilities. This is…
John Marquardt
March 18, 2022

The Keeper of the Family Story

The advent of my coming and going to another world was not through a portal handcrafted from a felled silver-barked tree of old, but the factory-made casket of my Father. My people bury in several places–my Father, a stone’s throw from Sarah Cannon, right down the street from where Tate was roused to write his Ode. He died at 61…
Chase Steely
March 17, 2022

The Silent Killer

I started playing the piano when I was 11. My family wasn’t musical and didn’t own a piano. So every afternoon when the bus dropped me off from school I would walk the mile from my house to my grandmother’s house. She had an old upright with so many missing bits of ivory that it looked like a snaggle-toothed kid…
Brandon Meeks
March 16, 2022

Lifetime Bondage

  Part 2 in Clyde Wilson's series, African-American Slavery in Historical Perspective. Part 1 can be read here. Life was tough for everyone in the America of the 1600s and 1700s.  The 1800s saw some improvement which led people to entertain the idea of enlightenment and  progress in living conditions. Southerners were as much conscious of and happy about a…
Clyde Wilson
March 15, 2022

Abraham Lincoln and the Ghost of Karl Marx

  Back in early 1981 the brilliant Southern scholar and traditionalist, Professor Mel Bradford, was the leading contender to receive President Ronald Reagan’s nomination as head of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Bradford was the epitome of the accomplished and erudite academician, yet his deep-rooted Southern and pro-Confederate beliefs disqualified him in the eyes of many national “conservatives” such…
Boyd Cathey
March 14, 2022

Podcast Episode 300

The Week in Review at the Abbeville Institute, March 7-11, 2022 Topics: Southern Tradition, Robert E. Lee, Slavery, Abraham Lincoln, Southern History
Brion McClanahan
March 12, 2022

The Once Southern City

I presume I am not the only person who thinks regularly about the strange reality of living in a part of what traditionally was the South, that is no longer really the South, like my native Northern Virginia. I think my idiosyncrasy explains why whenever I travel to a place that fits that description, I am infinitely curious about the…
Casey Chalk
March 11, 2022

African-American Slavery in Historical Perspective

Our culture’s indifference to the past---which easily shades over into hostility and rejection---furnishes the most telling proof of that culture’s bankruptcy. ---Christopher Lasch The purpose of education is to free the student from the tyranny of the present. ---Cicero The authority of those who teach is often an obstacle to those who want to learn. ---Cicero Introduction The slavery that…
Clyde Wilson
March 10, 2022

The Shadow of Red Rock

Anyone who knows me knows I am obsessed with time and place. As far as time goes, I’m mainly concerned with what happened before me - those who came before and their lives in this beautiful, rural and untouched county that we call home. Time has brought changes, as it always does, and some of it is even good. However,…
Travis Holt
March 9, 2022

Robert E. Lee and His Time

Delivered at the 2013 Abbeville Institute Summer School. What I want to do is thoroughly cover Lee in his time and in ours, and try to understand that transformation. There's more there than meets the eye, and it has to do with our understanding of Lee. If we can understand the transformation as carefully as I hope to take us…
William Wilson
March 8, 2022

The Preacher Who Stole Lincoln’s Past–By the Carload

On July 17, 1849, Robert Smith Todd of Lexington, Kentucky, died suddenly of cholera. He was among thousands who'd die in the world-wide epidemic that had already killed former president James K. Polk a month before and would be blamed for the death of Edgar Allan Poe a bit later. Todd's hasty death-bed will was endorsed by only one witness;…
Kevin Orlin Johnson
March 7, 2022

Podcast Episode 299

The Week in Review at the Abbeville Institute, Feb 28 - March 4, 2022 Topics: Southern humor, Southern literature, Jefferson, Reconstruction, Southern agriculture, Southern Tradition
Brion McClanahan
March 6, 2022

Stonewall Jackson’s Scabbard Speech

Originally published in the Southern Historical Society Papers, Vol. 16. 1888 While the Virginia Convention of 1861 was in session in Richmond, wrestling with the weighty problems of the day, and the grand old “Mother of States” was doing all in her power to prevent the terrible strife which her breast was so soon to bear, there occurred at Lexington,…

“Moral the Question Certainly is Not”

Filmmaker Arlen Parsa has recently undertaken a project that blots out the faces of all the signers of the Declaration of Independence in John Trumbull’s famous painting “The Declaration of Independence.” The stunt has unsurprisingly gained the filmmaker much notoriety. While the project might seem to have been a frivolous undertaking for Parsa—something to pass the time in these Coronavirus…
M. Andrew Holowchak
March 3, 2022

Reconstruction Era Chicanery

Postwar Southern reconstruction became corrupted when congressional Republicans took charge of it with the March 1867 Reconstruction Acts, almost two years after President Abraham Lincoln’s assassination. Prior to that, the process began in December 1863, while the war was still in progress. After Lincoln died and Andrew Johnson advanced to the presidency, Johnson tried to continue with a “Presidential Reconstruction…
Philip Leigh
March 2, 2022

Rage Against the [Industrial Food] Machine

In the rural Virginia town of Swoope, near the Shenandoah Valley, Joel Salatin practices common sense and ecologically sustainable agriculture on his farm, Polyface. In the wake of a COVID-19 pandemic that has drastically changed food distribution networks and disrupted the entire supply chain of the country, farming methods like Salatin’s have become increasingly desirable as we approach a dystopian…
Michael Martin
March 1, 2022