This is a footnote to my most recent offering at the Abbeville Institute regarding the sayonara being given to far too much of Southern culture, heritage and history that is now being swept away by the ever-growing tsunami of mindless social justice rage. You might well ask what could possibly have led a person who was born and largely bred in the North to become such a staunch defender of the South.

To start with, I must confess that I was born in the very heart of Yankeedom, Connecticut, but left there when I was pretty much of an infant and then, due to my father’s work as a hotel accountant, spent many of my early years living a rather nomadic life in a number of other areas above the Mason-Dixon Line. In 1935, We spent half a year in Bermuda where I attend a British private boys school. The last half century of my life, however, has been spent living in the western mountains of Tokyo. Prior to that, when my father was showman Billy Rose’s auditor at the 1936 Texas Frontier Centennial, we did live in Fort Worth for another six months. There, I had a far more early-American type of education at a one-room school house that had but one male teacher. As the teacher’s father had fought for the Confederacy with the 1st Texas Cavalry under Brigadier General McCulloch, his classes were treated to many tales about the War and the old South.

After serving in the Military Police during the Occupation of Japan at the close of the Pacific War, I then spent several years living in Augusta, Georgia, and receiving my higher education at the University of Georgia in Athens. Since then, my allegiance has always leaned in a Southern direction and I have aways considered myself a true, albeit adopted, son of the old South. As an added bonus, starting some twenty years ago my wife Rieko and I spent a few winters in Savannah, Charleston and Biloxi . . . and she too grew to love the South and its people.

In 2001, we were in Mississippi when the first Confederate flag frenzy erupted there, and some misguided souls were demanding that the Battle Flag be stripped from the century-old flag’s canton. While the “wokes” finally prevailed three year ago, as was the case with many other Confederate names and symbols, when we were there, the state-wide referendum on erasing the Battle Flag and replacing it with a galaxy of stars on a blue field was overwhelmingly in favor of retaining the Confederate symbol. In one small incident at that time, an elderly white Biloxi resident and his buddy came over to us and commented on my CS belt buckle by saying that many good men had fought and died for those letters. His buddy, however, was an equally old black man. A true sign of the South, and my wife said she wished everyone in both the North and Japan could also have seen the pair’s obvious friendship.

Furthermore, I had a number of ancestors who gave their military service, as well as their lives in some cases, to both the North and the South during the War of Secession. A larger number of them fought for the Union, such as three brothers, First Lieutenant Hermann von Hohenhausen and his siblings, Leonard and Richard, all of whom served in the mostly German 7th Regiment from New York City. Even more named Howland and Wilber on my Mother’s side of the family fought with the Union’s 120th Regiment from the Woodstock area of Ulster County in the Mid-Hudson Valley of New York State, with a Captain Wilber serving in another Union Army unit.

On the other side of the picket line was Virginian Samuel L. Simpson from Fauquier County, my great-great, great uncle who was a private throughout the War in Company “B” (the “Quantico Guards”) of Virginia’s 49th Infantry Regiment. Simpson fought in virtually every major battle in which the Army of Northern Virginia was engaged, was wounded during the Battle of Winchester in the Shenandoah Valley, again on Culp’s Hill during the third day at Gettysburg and for the last time at Sayler’s Creek in the last days of the War. Shortly after, he surrendered with General Lee at Appomattox along with the remaining eight officers and forty-five other enlisted men of the 49th Regiment. Over two decades after the War, Simpson, at age 48, finally received a fifteen dollar a year pension from the State of Virginia. The amount may well have been minuscule, but at least it was not in Confederate currency.

Simpson’s brother-in-law, Dr. William J. Luck of Middleburg, Virginia, one of the eight officers who surrendered with the 49th Regiment, had enlisted in the regiment as a surgeon prior to the First Battle of Manassas and had served under General Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson on Henry House Hill. After Manassas, however, the majority of Luck’s service was in the artillery and cavalry, including Graham’s Battery that was one of General J. E. B. Stuart’s horse artillery units. Dr. Luck also served at the General Hospital in Lynchburg, Virginia, and then returned to the 49th at Petersburg to operate the regiment’s field hospital. He also participated in the fight at Sayler’s Creek and may well have treated his wounded brother-in-law there.

It was during the siege of Petersburg that Surgeon Luck caused his sole Union casualty. During a surgical operation, an attack was made on the hospital by a Union Cavalry unit and when one of the horsemen attempted to rip the facility’s red medical flag from its pole, Luck picked up a shotgun and blasted the marauder from his saddle. After the War, the partially torn red flag and the shotgun, which had been a gift from Colonel John Mosby, the cavalry leader known as the ‘Gray Ghost of the Confederacy,” were fixtures in Dr. Luck’s Middleburg medical office. Several years ago, the two items brought a high price at a Virginia auction, along with another item from Dr. Luck’s wartime collection, the U. S. Army belt buckle from the Mexican War that was worn by General Jackson during the Battle of Manassas. Needless to say, my greatest pride rests with the two ancestors who were Confederate heroes. Their existence also allowed me the highly treasured honor of becoming a member of the Sons of Confederate Veterans.

To paraphrase General Doulas MacArthur, however, old Confederates never die, they just fade away . . . and I would like to close this essay by saying that I feel the time has finally come for me to also fade away from the scene at Abbeville. With my ninety-fifth year just over the horizon nothing is working as well as it once did (ah, to be 80 again!) and that includes my eyesight. Due to the latter, my typing has become an arduous task, and has forced me to realize that I must finally furl the old banner. Therefore, and with the deepest and most sincere apologies to General Lee, I would now like to add the following personal sayonara to y’all:

After eight years of most rewarding service to the Abbeville Institute, I am now compelled to yield to an overwhelming loss of vision. I need not tell the readers of my contributions who have remained steadfast to the last, that I have made this decision not only because I now find myself writing almost as many typos as correct words, but to relieve my dear wife Rieko of the onerous burden of constantly proofreading my work.

I take with me the satisfaction that proceeds from the consciousness of duty faithfully performed, and I earnestly pray that a merciful God will extend to you His blessing and protection – With unceasing admiration of your constancy and devotion to this writer, and a grateful remembrance of your kind and generous consideration, I bid you all an affectionate farewell.

John Marquardt

John Marquardt is a native of Connecticut but a Southerner at heart. After attending the University of Georgia, Marquardt realized the truth and the value of the Southern tradition. He served in World War II and spent his career in international trade. He currently resides in Tokyo, Japan. His Japanese wife loves Charleston and Savannah and admires Southern culture.


  • Great hearts do not fade, Mr. Marquardt. They just keep beating at a higher level. God bless you, Sir.

  • Earl Starbuck says:

    We love you just as well as ever, Mr. Marquardt! God bless you.

  • William Quinton Platt III says:

    “The long gray line has never failed us. Were you to do so, a million ghosts in olive drab, in brown khaki, in blue and gray, would rise from their white crosses, thundering those magic words: Duty, Honor, Country.”

    The General’s last address to West Point is equally moving. I went to a school where a friend of mine would play the recording on his phonograph from time to time.

    Thank you for your service. God speed, sir.

  • David LeBeau says:

    Mr. Marquardt, thank you for loving the South and contributing that same love to the Abbeville Institute.

  • Charlotte Niedermayer says:

    Thank you for your writings. I am a born and raised Fort Worthian, so, it was fun to see you spent, although a short time, here. May God bless you and your wife as you lay down your pen… (typewriter)…

  • sachaplin says:

    Mr. Marquardt: I, too, am from Connecticut. My wife and I moved to Richmond, Virginia, in 1980. It took me a while, but I finally grew to appreciate the south: its history and its culture. My appreciation for this history and culture is thanks to you, Abbeville Institute, Brion McClanahan and many others like you wonderful folks. I am a Jeffersonian and a supporter of thinking local and acting local. I hold little hope for the future of this country, but if there is hope to be had, it would lie in the principles that you and the Abbeville Institute stand for. I have always enjoyed your posts. Thank you.

  • Jim Wyrodick says:

    Mr. Marquardt, I am a native Southerner, and have lived in the South all my life. The institutions of our great Country, The United States of America, are largely reflections of Southern history, culture, and traditions. Your writings have consistently reminded us of that fact. I am not sure what the future holds, but your words will live on!

  • Gary Towery says:

    Well spoken. You will be missed!

  • David Chatham says:

    Thank you so much for helping keep the Southern tradition alive through your well-written, informative and insightful articles. You will be missed but not forgotten. May God bless you both.

  • Ben Thompson says:

    Mr. Marquardt,
    Thank you for all you do! Every time I see that you have written an article I make sure to read it. The story of you being so faithful and dutiful and your wife being equally so at your side touches my heart. If my grandfather wrote this I would have hugged his neck and told him how proud I was! God bless you sir!

  • Bob Neidert says:

    Mr. Marquardt,
    I don’t recall how I came upon The Abbeville Institute in my e-mails. However, you and the others who write opened my eyes as to the real south.
    As a northerner (Ohio born and raised), my education on the south was of the Civil War (War of Northern Aggression). You all have made me realize the treachery of Lincoln and others towards the south.

    Thank you for your contribution and may God bless you and Rieko.

    Bob Neidert
    Stow, Ohio

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