In this age of political correctness it may surprise people that there were three TV series that portrayed Confederates in a good light. All three are very good and all the episodes of two of the series are available on DVD, and some of the episodes of the other series is available.
The first series is Yancy Derringer. Yancy Derringer is a gentleman, adventurer and gambler. He is a former Confederate Army captain who has returned to New Orleans, Louisiana, in 1868, three years after the end of the War, during Reconstruction. The state is under Union control and martial law.
Widely respected by all parts of New Orleans society as a Southerner who never surrendered, Derringer is recruited by the Federal City Administrator, John Colton, to work as a secret agent at no pay and only Colton knows of his special role.
Yancy owns a riverboat, the Sultana. His weapons of choice are four-barrel Sharps pepperbox derringer handguns carried concealed (one held by a clamp inside the top of his hat, one in his vest’s left pocket under his jacket and one up his jacket’s left sleeve in a wrist holster), and a knife in his belt. He is an expert marksman. He also carries a cane or a riding crop with hidden swords and is said to have iron fists: one punch and his opponent remains unconscious for a day. Yancy dresses elegantly, most often in a white suit with a long coat, ruffled white shirt, a silk vest, a sash instead of a belt, a black under-the-collar bow tie, and a white flat-topped straw hat with curled brim.
Yancy’s sidekick, Pahoo-Ka-Ta-Wah, is a silent Pawnee American Indian who communicates only by sign language. Pa-hoo-Ka-Ta-Wah is Pawnee for “wolf who stands in water.” Although Pahoo is short on talk, he is long on action. Beneath a blanket wrapped about his body, he carries a sawed-off double-barreled shotgun loaded with split buckshot, which he wields in emergencies. Most of the time, however, he uses a throwing knife sheathed on his back.
Yancy and Pahoo live at the family plantation, Waverly. Yancy’s recurring love interest is Madame Francine, the strong-willed, beautiful owner of a members-only gambling house in New Orleans. Her real name is Nora and she is actually Irish. Miss Mandarin, Mei Ling, a former love interest and close friend of Yancy, is the proprietor of his favorite place to dine, the Sazerac Restaurant. Yancy also sometimes dines, usually al fresco, at the Charter House Restaurant, whose specialty is French cuisine, and gambles at the Blackjack Club. Most of Yancy’s out-of-town associates stay at the King Louis Hotel.
Watch Episode 1, “Return to New Orleans.”
The second series is The Gray Ghost. “We took our men from Texas, Kentucky, and Virginia; from the mountains and the backwoods and the plains. We put them under orders — guerrilla fighting orders, and what we lacked in numbers, we made up in speed and brains. Both Rebs and Yankee strangers, they called us ‘Mosby’s Rangers.’ Both North and South they knew our fame.
Gray Ghost is what they called me; John Mosby is my name.”
Gray Ghost is based on the true story of Major (later Colonel) John Singleton Mosby, a young lawyer who joined the Forty-Third Battalion of the First Virginia Cavalry and became the leader of a Confederate guerilla unit.
Mosby was known for his cunning and stealth, which earned him the name “Gray Ghost.”
Watch Episode 1, “Mosby’s Raiders.”
The third series is The Rebel. The adventures of young Confederate Army veteran Johnny Yuma, an aspiring writer. Haunted by his memories of the War, Yuma, in search of inner peace, roams the American West. He keeps a journal of his adventures and fights injustice where he finds it with a revolver and sawed-off double-barreled shotgun.
Watch Episode 1, “Johnny Yuma.”