Review Posts

The Cause of Jackson is the Cause of Us All

Old Hickory has been chopped off the front of the twenty-dollar bill. Andrew Jackson will still appear on the back of the bill, but Harriet Tubman (freed slave, conductor on the mostly mythical Underground Railroad, and Union spy) will now appear on the front. Jackson was a famous war hero and a feared duelist, but he finally met his match…
James Rutledge Roesch
April 26, 2016
Blog

Texas Secession?

It may not get anywhere at all, but there are a number of people in Texas trying to get the official state Republican Party to debate the issue of secession at the party convention on May 12-14. The movement got started by the Texas Nationalist Movement, a group that's been around for more than a decade, involved mostly in trying…
Kirkpatrick Sale
April 25, 2016
Podcast

Podcast Episode 23

The Week in Review at the Abbeville Institute, April 18-22, 2016. Topics: Political Correctness, U.S. Grant, Reconstruction, the Confederate Constitution, Southern medicine and science. https://soundcloud.com/the-abbeville-institute/episode-23
Brion McClanahan
April 23, 2016
Blog

Healing the Wounds of War

Over the years, countless thousands the New Yorkers have passed by monuments in their city that were dedicated to two eminent physicians who were related by marriage, but there is little doubt that few of them, until recently at least, had ever realized that the statues were erected in memory of former Southerners. The two men of medicine were Dr.…
John Marquardt
April 22, 2016
Blog

Backwards in a Sideways World

This article was originally printed at Tony Woodlief's website, Sand in the Gears. When I was twelve, we were evicted from our house in Florida, a consequence either of Reaganomics or our failure to pay rent for three months, depending on whose story you wanted to believe. We faced a long, hungry drive back to North Carolina. A neighbor, also…
Tony Woodlief
April 21, 2016
Blog

New From Southern Pens, Part 4

A new contribution to Southern literature from one or both of the Kennedy brothers, authors of the classic The South Was Right! and other good books, is always a cause for celebration. The latest, Uncle Seth Fought the Yankees by James Ronald Kennedy, does not disappoint. Uncle Seth, a Confederate veteran, in about 100 easy lessons, gently educates the young…
Clyde Wilson
April 20, 2016
Review Posts

The Confederacy’s Rule of Law

As Southern States seceded from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America, the matter of transitioning the US Judiciary into the CSA Judiciary required both skill and determination. Issues of jurisdiction, personnel, legal codes, records, writs and ongoing processes had to be considered. Rather than starting de novo, the CSA Provisional Constitution mostly adopted the structure of…
Marshall DeRosa
April 19, 2016
Blog

Grant Gets the Votes

It is no surprise to Civil War students that Ulysses Grant’s reputation has soared over the last fifty years. During the past twenty years nearly all of his biographies have been favorable. They typically ignore, minimize, or deny his failings. Examples include those of Jean Smith, H. W. Brands, and Joan Waugh. Two more will apparently join the group later…
Philip Leigh
April 18, 2016
Podcast

Podcast Episode 22

The Week in Review at the Abbeville Institute, April 11-15, 2016. Topics: Political Correctness, Southern music, Southern literature, Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson, secession, Southern symbols, William T. Sherman, war crimes. https://soundcloud.com/the-abbeville-institute/episode-22
Brion McClanahan
April 16, 2016
Blog

Is the Mississippi State Flag “Anti-American”?

United States District Judge Carlton Reeves is considering a lawsuit by Mississippi attorney Carlos Moore to rule that the Mississippi State flag is unconstitutional because it is “anti-American,” meaning it symbolizes secession and slavery. I leave aside the contorted legal reasoning that might support such a suit, namely whether Moore has standing to sue, if this is a judicial not…
Donald Livingston
April 15, 2016
Blog

Sherman’s Army in North Carolina

Some historians have suggested that General William T. Sherman's terror campaign through the deep South came to an end when his troops crossed the state line into North Carolina, and some of his officers are on record noting a pronounced change in the conduct of their soldiers. It is true that North Carolina did not see the scale of ruthless…
Karen Stokes
April 14, 2016
Blog

Thomas Jefferson’s Birthday

Thomas Jefferson’s birthday went virtually unnoticed earlier this year (1993), the 250th anniversary of his birth. Nothing is more indicative of how badly we Americans have squandered our moral capital and betrayed the substance of our history. We did have, of course, President Clinton’s inaugural journey from Monticello, though it is hard to imagine anything further from the true spirit…
Clyde Wilson
April 13, 2016
Review Posts

The Ireland of the Union

Richard Henry Wilde (1789-1847) was regarded as one of the finest American poets of his day.  Born in Ireland, he settled in Georgia and served several terms in the United States House of Representatives as a Democratic-Republican and later Jacksonian Democrat.  He supported William H. Crawford for president in 1824.  Wilde left the United States for Europe in 1835 then…
Richard Henry Wilde
April 12, 2016
Blog

McWhirter Tries to Strike Back

My recent piece on James Ryder Randall, "At Arlington", touched a nerve, at least with Christian McWhirter.  I spent some time in "At Arlington" discussing his March Time magazine piece, and thus he was compelled to reply. McWhirter begins by wondering when the "neo-Confederate crowd" would respond to his article.  It only took him one sentence to use the tired pejorative "neo-Confederate"…
Brion McClanahan
April 12, 2016
Blog

American Music Is Southern Music

“American Idol,” a reality-based music singing competition on the Fox Network, has come to an end, and Yankees everywhere can breathe a sigh of relief, as their long, national nightmare is finally over.  Yankees haven’t been whipped this badly since Fredericksburg, and it’s a miracle they allowed the American Idol carnage to continue on as long as it did.  All…
Tom Daniel
April 11, 2016
Podcast

Podcast Episode 21

The Week in Review at the Abbeville Institute, April 4-8, 2016. Topics: Political Correctness, Southern literature, Robert E. Lee, James Ryder Randall, American imperialism, the original Constitution and State's Rights. https://soundcloud.com/the-abbeville-institute/episode-21
Brion McClanahan
April 9, 2016
Blog

The Sovereign States

This essay is the introduction to Mr. Kilpatrick's The Sovereign States (Regnery, 1957). AMONG the more melancholy aspects of the genteel world we live in is a slow decline in the enjoyment that men once found in the combat of ideas, free and unrestrained. Competition of any sort, indeed, seems to be regarded these days, in our schools and elsewhere,…
James J. Kilpatrick
April 8, 2016
Blog

Why They Hate Us

This post was originally published at fredoneverything.org. A frequent theme nowadays is “Why do they hate us?” meaning why does so much of the world detest the United States. The reasons given are usually absurd: They hate our freedom or democracy. They hate us for our cultural superiority. They hate us because we are wonderful. No. Actually the reason is…
Fred Reed
April 7, 2016
Blog

Sayings By or For Southerners, Part XXX

The Western intellectual knows,  or  rather thinks he knows, what others do not.  He rarely considers reality as such. . . . He thinks in terms  of  concepts and abstract models.  The reasoning  does  not start with the observation of events , but with  the invocation of a formula or a theoretical concept  issued  by a theoretician  whom he considers…
Clyde Wilson
April 6, 2016
Review Posts

At Arlington

The PC police have found a new target.  Not satisfied with monuments and flags, the Maryland general assembly recently voted to alter the lyrics to the official State song, James Ryder Randall's "Maryland, My Maryland."  Lincoln apologist Christian McWhirter penned a piece for Time magazine that labeled the song "dissident."  This is true if using the standard definition of the word,…
Brion McClanahan
April 5, 2016
Blog

Lee’s Memory

In the wake of growing hostility toward the Confederacy a New Orleans Robert E. Lee statue is scheduled for destruction and debate is underway in Charlottesville, Virginia to remove another one. Even though Washington & Lee is a private university, it has already yielded to pressures to remove the Confederate flag from the Lee Chapel. The school may ultimately feel…
Philip Leigh
April 4, 2016
Podcast

Podcast Episode 20

The Week in Review at the Abbeville Institute, March 28 - April 1, 2016. Topics: Secession, Abraham Lincoln, Southern Literature, Southern Culture, Independence, Jeffersonian Tradition, Southern Art https://soundcloud.com/the-abbeville-institute/episode-20
Brion McClanahan
April 2, 2016
Blog

March Top Ten

The Top Ten articles for March 2016: 1. Why The War Was Not About Slavery by Clyde Wilson 2. Baltimore Set to Ban Lee and Jackson, to Welcome Degenerate Divine by J. L. Bennett 3. Secession Hypocrisy: The Case of West Virginia by Dave Benner 4. The Battle Flag and Christianity by Lunelle McCallister 5. Andrew Jackson: The Good, the…
Brion McClanahan
April 2, 2016
Blog

Interpreting Southern Art

For several weeks my local art museum displayed a traveling exhibit from the Johnson Collection of art permanently located in Spartanburg, South Carolina.   The prevailing consensus among historians is that the antebellum South did not produce much in the way of art, that its literature was substandard, and that its only contribution to American history was slavery and militaristic oligarchy.  Those who read this blog understand this position to…
Brion McClanahan
April 1, 2016
Blog

The Jeffersonian Solution

This post was originally published at The Deliberate Agrarian. The original strength of our American republic was found in the ability to supply our own needs. That is the very definition of independence. We provided our own form of government, our own energy resources, our own manufacturing, and we grew an overabundance of our own food. We were a self-sufficient…
Herrick Kimball
March 31, 2016
Blog

Sayings By or For Southerners, Part XXIX

In a PC world, humor is a capital offense.   --Taki Happiness is never an accident.  It is the prize we get when we chose wisely from life’s great stores.  --Irene Dunne,   citing advice from her  Kentucky father There is no such thing as being too Southern.    --Lewis Grizzard “The war between the Yankees and the Americans.”  --Granny  Clampett  on the …
Clyde Wilson
March 30, 2016
Review Posts

Sot Weed from the Maryland Muse

EBENEZER COOKE (fl. ca. 1680s—1730s?) of Maryland is a major figure in colonial American literature. He is best known for the long satirical poem "The Sot-Weed Factor." (The sot-weed is tobacco, mainstay of the Southern, and American economy in the colonial period, and the factor is a figure long familiar in the South—the seaport merchant who sold and exported the…
Ebenezer Cooke
March 29, 2016
Blog

Secession Hypocrisy: The Case of West Virginia

Many people know that the state of West Virginia came to be during the Civil War, but very few know that its admission to the union was particularly controversial. Even in the north, free from the influence of the departed southern states, many opposed Lincoln’s desire to admit West Virginia. Opposing Lincoln’s ultimate stance, those who offered candid deference to…
Dave Benner
March 28, 2016
Podcast

Podcast Episode 19

The Week in Review at the Abbeville Institute, 21-25 March, 2016. Topics: William T. Sherman, War Crimes, Republicanism, Secession, Southern Easter https://soundcloud.com/the-abbeville-institute/episode-19
Brion McClanahan
March 26, 2016
Blog

A Rural Southern Easter

Benjamin Franklin White, born 1800 in South Carolina, was a Southern music pioneer. His collection of hymns titled The Sacred Harp, published in 1844, was based on shape note singing and became the standard hymnal in the South. Shape note music first appeared in 1801 and quickly spread through the rural Southern congregationalist communities. The music is performed a cappella…
Brion McClanahan
March 25, 2016
Blog

Vale Res Publica

Once again, it is politicking time in the good ol’ US of A.  The Democrats, the party of youth, vision, and vigor, present to the country a senile old socialist who doesn’t believe that poor white people exist, and a former first lady rejected by Netflix central casting for a role in  House of Cards (It was the looks, not…
John Devanny
March 24, 2016
Blog

Sayings By or For Southerners, Part XXVIII

Education is a vast sea of lies, waste, corruption, crackpot theorizing,  and  careerist  logrolling. --John Derbyshire A lie can travel half way around the world while truth is still putting on his boots.  --Mark Twain The hottest places in Hell are reserved for those, who, in times of great moral crisis,  maintain  their neutrality.  --Dante They change their sky, not…
Clyde Wilson
March 23, 2016
Review Posts

The Destruction of Old Sheldon Church and Other Ravages of War

From time to time an unsuspecting tourist visiting the ruins of the Old Sheldon Church will insist that they caught a glimpse of a spectral figure hovering among the scattered remains of the time-weathered gravestones. Some might scoff at such sightings, but the reports of the ghost are consistent. Witnesses describe what appears to be the ethereal figure of a…
Gail Jarvis
March 22, 2016
Blog

Death is Mercy to Secessionists

William T. Sherman viewed Southerners as he later viewed American Indians, to be exterminated or banished to reservations as punishment for having resisted government power. They were subjects and merely temporary occupants of land belonging to his government whom they served. The revealing excerpts below are taken from “Reminiscences of Public Men in Alabama,” published in 1872: Headquarters, Department of…
Bernard Thuersam
March 21, 2016
Podcast

Podcast Episode 18

The Week in Review at the Abbeville Institute, March 14-18, 2016 Topics: John C. Calhoun, PC, Confederate Emancipation, Slavery, Charles Carroll of Carrollton https://soundcloud.com/the-abbeville-institute/episode-18
Brion McClanahan
March 19, 2016
Clyde Wilson Library

Calhoun’s Carolina

John C. Culhoon. Culhoon is the right pronunciation by the way. John C. Culhoon was an upcountryman. We upcountry people tend to suspect Charlestonians, like Dr. Fleming, of being somewhat haughty and dissipated. Calhoun studied law briefly in Charleston and found a bride here, and he stopped off when he couldn't avoid it on his way to and from Washington,…
Clyde Wilson
March 18, 2016
Review Posts

Charles Carroll of Carrollton: The Southern Irish Catholic Planter

A slightly different version of this essay is Chapter Eleven in Brion McClanahan, The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Founding Fathers (Regnery, 2009).  This essay is offered as a Southern celebration of St. Patrick's Day. Charles Carroll of Carrollton has one of the more interesting stories of the Founding generation. He was one of the wealthiest men in the colonies…
Brion McClanahan
March 17, 2016
Blog

Sayings By or For Southerners, Part XXVII

“My name’s Anderson.  They call me Bloody Bill.   Going to  Kansas to kill Red Legs.  Want to come along?”    Clint Eastwood replies:   “I reckon I will.”   --“The Outlaw Josey Wales” The success of equality in America is due, I think, mainly to the circumstance that a large number of people, who were substantially equal in all the important matters, recognized that…
Clyde Wilson
March 16, 2016
Review Posts

Confederate Emancipation

  The following is a transcription of a speech given at the inaugural Education Conference of the Alabama Division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans:  ‘The best men of the South have long desired to do away with the institution and were quite willing to see it abolished.’ – Robert E. Lee ‘Most informed men realized that slavery was not…
James Rutledge Roesch
March 15, 2016
Blog

Renaming Calhoun College

The post was originally published at LewRockwell.com. I’ve recently received information that Yale University may be about to rename what is possibly the most picturesque of the twelve colleges that house its undergraduate population. Calhoun College, which flanks stately Elm Street in the now badly run-down city of New Haven, is for me a scene of youthful memory. As a…
Paul Gottfried
March 14, 2016
Blog

Real Federalism: Switzerland

With each visit to Switzerland, my understanding and appreciation of the political economy of the country becomes deeper and more nuanced. The Swiss people have been incredibly successful in evolving a philosophy, culture and political structure which, limits the potential power of a centralist, nationalist and statist administration through the adoption of a federal system and other policies which distribute…
Harry Teasley
March 11, 2016
Blog

The Muckraker and the War

It was the spring of 1865 . . . the remnants of what once had been Confederate regiments had stacked their arms, the tattered battle flags were furled, the cause which had been so gallantly defended was lost and one by one the Army of Northern Virginia, the Army of Tennessee and the Army of the Trans-Mississippi were disbanded. Those…
John Marquardt
March 10, 2016
Clyde Wilson Library

Why The War Was Not About Slavery

Conventional wisdom of the moment tells us that the great war of 1861—1865 was “about” slavery or was “caused by” slavery. I submit that this is not a historical judgment but a political slogan. What a war is about has many answers according to the varied perspectives of different participants and of those who come after. To limit so vast…
Clyde Wilson
March 9, 2016
Review Posts

The Abolitionist Secessionist?

“To live honestly is to hurt no one, and give to every one his due.”-Lysander Spooner Lysander Spooner was a Boston legal scholar and philosopher during the nineteenth century. What makes this man of Massachusetts valuable to the legacy of the Southern tradition is that Spooner was a consistent proponent of Jeffersonian Classical Liberalism*. There are two characteristics that are…
Matt De Santi
March 8, 2016
Blog

The Tuskegee Confederate Memorial

For anyone with a casual knowledge about Alabama’s juicy and active history, the words “Tuskegee” and “Confederate” seem to be an odd match. Tuskegee, Alabama is the site of Booker T. Washington’s visionary Tuskegee Institute, the home of the legendary Tuskegee Airmen, and the location of the first integrated public high school in Alabama. And yet, the center of town…
Tom Daniel
March 7, 2016
Podcast

Podcast Episode 16

The Week in Review, February 29-March 4, 2016 Topics: Southern literature, Harper Lee, Margaret Mitchell, PC, the Confederate Flag, Confederate monuments, the Southern tradition. https://soundcloud.com/the-abbeville-institute/episode-16
Brion McClanahan
March 5, 2016
Blog

Baltimore Set to Ban Lee and Jackson, to Welcome Degenerate Divine

    As Baltimore is preparing to honor a coprophagic crossdresser, the city’s double-equestrian Lee-Jackson monument is coming down.  Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, who presided over and encouraged the riots following the death of Freddie Gray last year, is expected to direct its removal from Wyman Park where the monument, the site of many Lee-Jackson Day celebrations, has stood since 1948. …
J.L. Bennett
March 4, 2016
Blog

The Battle Flag and Christianity

First they banned prayer in schools.  Then they removed nativity scenes on courthouse grounds. Then they removed the Ten Commandments from the Alabama Supreme Court.  Next came the “War on Christmas”  involving the omission of the word “Christmas” from office and Government calendars to be substituted with “Holiday”.  According to Wikipedia “The expression ‘War on Christmas’ has often been used…
Lunelle McCallister
March 3, 2016
Blog

What is PC?

This talk was delivered on Friday, February 26, 2016 at the Abbeville Institute Conference "The PC Attack on the South." We are here to deal with the PC attacks on Southern Tradition. We have become so familiar with PC in everyday life that our perception of what it actually is has been dulled. PC is a deceptive cover name for…
Clyde Wilson
March 2, 2016
Review Posts

Old Man’s Burden

Mr. Newhouse’s daughter in Atlanta no longer knew what to do about her younger son, Kyle.  He was completely out of control.  He violated curfew regularly.  He cultivated distasteful friends and assumed their worst characteristics and generally behaved with unwarranted sullenness and disrespect.  He had been given everything, after all: a private school education, trips, without chaperone, to places like…
Randall Ivey
March 1, 2016
Blog

February Top 10

The top ten articles for February 2016: 1. The Nationalist Myth by Brion McClanahan 2. Scalia, the Constitution, and the Court by Carl Jones 3. What's Holding Alabama Back? by Tom Daniel 4. The Principle of Secession Historically Traced by George Petrie 5. Rethinkin' Lincoln by Brion McClanahan 6. Dilorenzo and His Critics by Clyde Wilson 7. John C. Calhoun…
Brion McClanahan
March 1, 2016
Blog

A Tale of Two Southern Books

This time of year we begin seeing recommendations of books for Christmas presents. This article is also a recommendation for a gift book but I admit that I have an ulterior motive. I intend to compare this book with another one in order to illustrate a political phenomenon that has always intrigued me. The phenomenon I am referring to is…
Gail Jarvis
February 29, 2016
Podcast

Podcast Episode 15

The Week in Review at the Abbeville Institute, February 22-26, 2016. Topics: George Washington, Agrarianism, the Southern tradition, Antonin Scalia, Abraham Lincoln, Southern heroes. https://soundcloud.com/the-abbeville-institute/episode-15
Brion McClanahan
February 27, 2016
Blog

Rethinkin’ Lincoln

The most frequent question I have received during promotion of my new book, 9 Presidents Who Screwed Up America and Four Who Tried to Save Her, has been, “How can you say that Lincoln screwed up America?” After all, he is the man who saved the Union and who put slavery on the path to extinction. There should be a…
Brion McClanahan
February 26, 2016
Blog

Scalia, the Constitution, and the Court

With the recent passing of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, folks are writhing in fear over the prospect of Obama appointing a new SC Judge. "This", they say, "could be the most monumental appointment in history and could drastically change our political landscape" and this "is especially true with regards to how the 2nd Amendment is interpreted." This is all…
Carl Jones
February 25, 2016
Blog

Sayings By or For Southerners, Part XXVI

A friend’s encounter with a clergyman:  His mission, he says, is Social Justice.  Our South Carolina governor, when she removed the Confederate flag from the capitol grounds, had “a Jesus moment,” a Divine Revelation of Social Justice.  He hopes that  others will have such a Moment.  What impressed me most about this leader of the faith was not the arrogant…
Clyde Wilson
February 24, 2016
Review Posts

Manifesto of Old Men and Simple Preachers

Over time a man, if he is perceptive, comes to certain conclusions.  The most startling is that the greatest truths were spoken to him throughout his life by ordinary men, simple preachers, old men sitting around drinking soda and eating peanuts, his father.  These men, if beneficiaries of a culture and community that embraces common-sense as a virtue, know truths…
Barry Clark
February 23, 2016
Blog

George Washington

From Washington and the Generals of the American Revolution by Rufus Wilmot Griswold and William Gilmore Simms, 1847. (Editor's Note: Thank you to Simms scholar Jeff Rogers for correcting the auhtorship of this article.  Griswold, not Simms, wrote this chapter on Washington.  Simms wrote several chapters in this two volume work, notably on Southerners Pinckney, Sumner, and Moultrie). An attentive…
Rufus Wilmot Griswold
February 22, 2016
Podcast

Podcast Episode 14

The Week in Review at the Abbeville Institute, February 15-19, 2016. Topic: Abraham Lincoln https://soundcloud.com/the-abbeville-institute/episode-14
Brion McClanahan
February 21, 2016
Blog

The Nationalist Myth

Dave Benner, Compact of the Republic: The League of the States and the Constitution (Life and Liberty Publishing, 2015). James Ronald Kennedy, Uncle Seth Fought the Yankees (Pelican Publishing, 2015). Jack Kerwick, The American Offensive: Dispatches from the Front (Stairway Press, 2015). One of the results of the Northern victory in 1865 was the codification of Lincolnian nationalism and its…
Brion McClanahan
February 19, 2016
Review Posts

The Lincoln Legacy: A Long View

This essay is a chapter in M.E. Bradford, Remembering Who We Are: Observations of a Southern Conservative (University of Georgia Press, 1985). With the time and manner of his death Abraham Lincoln, as leader of a Puritan people who had just won a great victory over "the forces of evil," was placed beyond the reach of ordinary historical inquiry and…
M.E. Bradford
February 18, 2016
Clyde Wilson Library

Dilorenzo and His Critics

Professor Thomas DiLorenzo’s The Real Lincoln has provoked the utterly predictable torrent of abuse from state worshipers and self-appointed prophets of The True American Way. All DiLorenzo has done (and this does not in the least detract from his courage, eloquence, and insight) is to analyze Honest Abe as a historical figure just like any other, rather than treat him…
Clyde Wilson
February 17, 2016
Review Posts

Executive Usurpation

Mr. President, during the special session of the Senate in March last, when seven States had withdrawn, by the action of their people, from the Federal Union, disclaimed all allegiance to the Government, and organized a separate common government, I took occasion, before the public mind had become excited, to express fully my views of the structure of our Government,…
James A. Bayard
February 16, 2016
Blog

The Lincoln Douglas Debates

This essay first appeared in National Review, 6/1, June 21, 1958, 18-19. Just one hundred years ago Abraham Lincoln and Stephen A. Douglas were stumping Illinois for tire office of United States Senator. They made a total of eighty-three appearances before the voters of that state, seven of which were in the form of joint debates. Now, on this anniversary…
Richard M. Weaver
February 15, 2016
Podcast

Podcast Episode 13

The Week in Review at the Abbeville Institute, Feb 8-12, 2016. Topics: Reconstruction, Southern History, Secession, James Iredell, Southern politics. https://soundcloud.com/the-abbeville-institute/episode-13
Brion McClanahan
February 13, 2016
Blog

James Iredell

One of the greatest legal minds of the founding generation was also one of the most reserved and unobtrusive. On many levels, he differed from his peers. Outspoken Federalist from New York, John Jay, became the first Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court. Prominent Virginia Governor Edmund Randolph was selected by George Washington to be the first Attorney…
Dave Benner
February 12, 2016
Review Posts

The Principle of Secession Historically Traced

This essay is taken from The South in the Building of the Nation Series, Vol. 4 The Political History. THE political theory on which the Southern states in 1860 and 1861 based their right to withdraw from the Union was not the sudden creation of any one man, or of any one group of men. Like other ideas that have…
George Petrie
February 11, 2016
Blog

Sayings By or For Southerners, Part XXV

The death of the spirit is the price of progress. --Eric Voegelin The Athenians know what is right, but will not do it. --Cicero Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? Nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush:  therefore they shall fall among them that fall:  in time of their visitation they shall be cast down, saith…
Clyde Wilson
February 10, 2016
Blog

Elephants in Dixie

The origin of the elephant as a symbol of the Republican Party occurred in 1874 after a political cartoon by Thomas Nast appeared in the popular New York newspaper, “Harper’s Weekly.” It was during the congressional elections of that year when Nast, a renowned Republican satirist, drew a picture of the Democratic donkey dressed in a lion’s skin frightening away…
John Marquardt
February 9, 2016
Blog

Reconstruction in South Carolina

In 1872, Daniel W. Voorhees, a Congressman of Indiana, made a speech in the U.S. House of Representatives in which he described conditions in the South after the war, during the period (laughingly) known as “Reconstruction.”  He accused the United States government, under the control of the Republican Party, of plundering and slandering the conquered Southern states, sending “powerful missionaries…
Karen Stokes
February 8, 2016
Blog

“Dar’s nuttin’ lak de ol’-time ways”

Many people are familiar with the Slave Narratives from the Federal Writers Project of the 1930s. While some historians reject them for what has been called gross inaccuracies due in large part to the many positive memories of the institution (the negative accounts are always used), they have become the standard source for firsthand information on the institution from the…
Brion McClanahan
February 5, 2016
Blog

The Confederacy, Oscars, and Social Justice

"Social Justice" is one of today's manipulative phrases. In this case "justice" is defined as the equal distribution of wealth, opportunities, and privileges among all groups in a society. In past generations, the concept of "social justice" was referred to as "leveling"; a more accurate, and certainly more honest, description. Leveling is one of those Utopian goals often sought, but…
Gail Jarvis
February 4, 2016
Clyde Wilson Library

The Way We Are Now

I promised to keep you updated on our government’s radio ads. In the latest, the Department of Justice offers you its benevolent services for any problem you might be experiencing with school bullies. * * * * I may not be a good American. I have never watched a Super Bowl or an NBA championship, never been to Las Vegas,…
Clyde Wilson
February 3, 2016
Review Posts

European Influences in the South

This essay is a chapter from The South in the Building of the Nation series, History of the Social Life. The solidarity of public opinion in the South has been so often commented upon that it is difficult to realize the heterogeneous elements employed in making her population. The "solid South" is not only a political but in many respects…
Edwin Mims
February 2, 2016
Blog

January Top 10

Our top ten articles for January 2016: Black Slaveowners by Larry Koger Robert E. Lee: Gallant Soldier, True Patriot, Noble Christian by Mike Scruggs Did Black People Own Slaves? by Henry Louis Gates, Jr. A Southerner Repents by Fred Reed Stonewall Jackson by James I. Robertson, Jr. When the Yankees Come: Former South Carolina Slaves Remember the Invasion by Paul…
Brion McClanahan
February 2, 2016
Blog

What’s Holding Alabama Back?

As I watched my local Montgomery, Alabama news station this morning, I saw that question pop up on the screen. What’s holding Alabama back? Wait, what? What do you mean by “holding back?” In the segment, the news station sent out a roving reporter on the streets of Montgomery to ask random citizens to tell him what they believe is…
Tom Daniel
February 1, 2016
Podcast

Podcast Episode 11

The Week in Review at the Abbeville Institute, Jan 25-29, 2016. Topics include the Southern tradition, Southern cooking, Southern politics, Thomas Jefferson, Southern education, and Robert E. Lee. https://soundcloud.com/the-abbeville-institute/episode-11
Brion McClanahan
January 30, 2016
Blog

Old South Education before the War to Destroy Southern Civilization

In the Old South, only those children whose parents thought they needed education, attended school; many did not.  Of those who did not, many were taught at home to read or to read and write.  A higher percentage of Southerners than Northerners attended college, though students in Southern colleges were more interested in making and enjoying social contacts than in…
George Crockett
January 29, 2016
Blog

Huey Long’s Potlikker Recipe

In Louisiana history and folklore, Huey Pierce Long occupies a very special niche.  To be depressingly brief, he was born and reared in north-central Louisiana’s hardscrabble Winn Parish where, in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, contrariness, populism and socialism were dominant.  Charismatic and unscrupulous but unquestionably brilliant, Huey secured a law degree and entered politics.  With a knack…
Roger Busbice
January 28, 2016
Clyde Wilson Library

It’s True What They Say About Dixie

Throughout most of American history region has been a better predictor of political position than party. That aspect of our reality has been neglected and suppressed in recent times as the rest of the country has conspired or acquiesced in transforming the South into a replica of Ohio. Yet the notorious squeak vote on the ObamaCare bill shows that the…
Clyde Wilson
January 27, 2016
Review Posts

Jefferson and the Barbary Pirates

President Thomas Jefferson’s first inaugural address articulated his philosophical manifesto: “Peace, commerce, and friendship with all nations – entangling alliances with none.” These basic maxims were stressed repeatedly by Jefferson, who cherished a commercially free country that would avert the costly European wars of the past. Optimally, Jefferson hoped to avoid foreign conflicts completely. Jefferson had long championed the idea…
Dave Benner
January 26, 2016
Blog

The Heritage of the South

This essay served as the concluding chapter to Page's biography of Robert E. Lee, published in 1908. I stood not a great while ago on the most impressive spot, perhaps, in all Europe: beneath the majestic dome of the Invalides where stands the tomb of Napoleon. It was a summer evening, and we descended the steps and stood at the…
Thomas Nelson Page
January 25, 2016
Podcast

Podcast Episode 10

The Week in Review at the Abbeville Institute, Jan 18-22, 2016. Topics: Political Correctness, Robert E. Lee, Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson https://soundcloud.com/the-abbeville-institute/episode-10
Brion McClanahan
January 23, 2016
Blog

Lee the Philosopher

This essay was originally published in The Georgia Review, Vol. II, No. 3 (Fall 1948), 297-303. As the Civil War assumes increasingly the role of an American Iliad, a tendency sets in for its heroes to take on Fixed characterizations. Epithets of praise and blame begin to recur, and a single virtue usurps the right to personify the individual. In…
Richard M. Weaver
January 22, 2016
Review Posts

Stonewall Jackson

  This essay is excerpted from the Preface to Stonewall Jackson: The Man, the Soldier, the Legend (1997) by James I. Robertson, Jr. Thomas Jonathan Jackson’s walnut bookcase at the Virginia Historical Society contains six shelves filled with the volumes he collected. Almost in the center of the case stand three works side by side. The one in I he…
James I. Robertson, Jr.
January 21, 2016
Clyde Wilson Library

Robert E. Lee and the American Union

"And the cause of all these things was power pursued for the gratification of avarice….." -- Thucydides Lee made few political statements, as befits a soldier. When he did it was almost always in private and in response to questions. The most important of such statements is his letter to Lord Acton after The War, which will be treated later.…
Clyde Wilson
January 20, 2016
Blog

Robert E. Lee: Gallant Soldier, Noble Patriot, True Christian

January 19 will mark the 209th anniversary of the birth of Robert E. Lee in 1807, one of the most respected and revered military leaders in American history. That respect and reverence extends over most of the world, wherever military leadership is studied. Lee’s birthday is an official state holiday in Alabama, Arkansas, Mississippi, and Florida. It was also an…
Mike Scruggs
January 19, 2016
Blog

American Hypocrisy

I was watching the national news immediately after the San Bernardino terror. A sympathetic host was interviewing a refined Muslim gentleman, who was given more than ample time to explain that his faith and its symbols were being misrepresented by the terrorists’ holocaust. But consider: The Koran contains the words of Allah whose many commandments therein call for the extermination…
Herbert Chambers
January 18, 2016
Podcast

Podcast Episode 9

The Week in Review at the Abbeville Institute, Jan 11-15, 2016.  Host Brion McClanahan discusses Harper Lee, Southern literature, Southern Jews, Reconstruction, and political correctness. https://soundcloud.com/the-abbeville-institute/episode-9
Brion McClanahan
January 16, 2016
Blog

The Untold Story of Reconstruction

Widely praised for his 2009 Cotton and Race in the Making of America, author Gene Dattel recently wrote an article titled “The Untold Story of Reconstruction,” in the September 2015 edition of The New Criterion. Although predicting that the present Reconstruction Sesquicentennial shall result in “reams of material blaming the South for our racial conundrum” he concludes that all the…
Philip Leigh
January 15, 2016
Blog

Southern Stars of David

I am a Jew. Hath not a Jew eyes? Hath not a Jew hands, organs, dimensions, senses, affections, passions? Fed with the same food, hurt with the same weapons, subject to the same diseases, healed by the same means, warmed and cooled by the same winter and summer as a Christian is?    The Merchant of Venice (Act 3, Scene…
John Marquardt
January 14, 2016
Blog

Sayings By or For Southerners, Part XXIV

Totalitarianism, defined as the existential rule of Gnostic activists, is the end form of progressive civilization.--Eric Voegelin The South is the foe to Northern industry---to our mines, our manufactures, and our commerce.--Abolitionist Theodore Parker, 1861 Consolidators, supremacists, and conquerors, however, will all equally disregard any instrument, however solemn and explicit, by which ambition and avarice will be restrained and the…
Clyde Wilson
January 13, 2016
Review Posts

To the Virginian Voyage

Michael Drayton never came to the New World.  In 1606 he wrote this ode "To the Virginian Voyage," in honour of Sir Walter Raleigh's first expedition to plant a permanent settlement of English people in North America.  The poem illustrates the culture out of which the first Southerners came and almost uncannily anticipates the South that was soon to be…
Michael Drayton
January 12, 2016
Blog

Go Set a Watchman

Harper Lee betrayed the literary establishment and many of her readers with the recent publication of her novel, Go Set a Watchman.  The novel was originally written before the acclaimed, To Kill a Mockingbird and when it was published last year the literary public, readers and critics, were most impatient to read it. Many of them had reactions ranging from…
John Devanny
January 11, 2016
Podcast

Podcast Episode 8

The Week in Review at the Abbeville Institute, Jan 4-8, 2016, hosted by Brion McClanahan.  Topics include Black slaveonwers, Black Confederates, Revisionism, and Political Correctness. https://soundcloud.com/the-abbeville-institute/episode-8
Brion McClanahan
January 9, 2016
Blog

Black Soldiers, North and South, 1861-1865

This articles was originally published as Chapter 27 in Understanding the War Between the States, Howard Ray White and Clyde Wilson, eds., 2015. Students will be surprised to learn of the extent to which African Americans supported the Confederate army and navy.  That will be covered in some detail in this chapter.  Also covered with be the more familiar story…
Earl L. Ijames
January 8, 2016
Blog

Black Slaveowners

  This essay is the introduction to Larry Koger's book, Black Slaveowners: Free Black Slave Masters in South Carolina, 1790-1860. Black slaveholding is a historical phenomenon which has not been fully explored by scholars. Graduate students of history are often sur­prised to learn that some free blacks owned slaves. Even historians are fre­quently skeptical until they discover the number of…
Larry Koger
January 7, 2016
Clyde Wilson Library

Black Confederates?

A review of Black Confederates and Afro-Yankees in Civil War Virginia, by Ervin L. Jordan, Jr., Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 1995, 447 pages; and Black Slaveowners: Free Black Slavemasters in South Carolina, 1790-1860, by Larry Koger, Columbia: University of South Carolina Press, 1994, 286 pages. Black Confederates! Remember, you heard it here first. You will be hearing more if…
Clyde Wilson
January 6, 2016
Review Posts

Did Black People Own Slaves?

This article was originally printed at TheRoot.com on March 4, 2013. One of the most vexing questions in African-American history is whether free African Americans themselves owned slaves. The short answer to this question, as you might suspect, is yes, of course; some free black people in this country bought and sold other black people, and did so at least…
Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
January 5, 2016
Blog

“Get Past Race and Fix Current Problems:” A Reply

South Carolina State Senator Katrina Frye Shealy recently declared that the state should “get past race and fix current problems.”   Dr. W. Kirk Wood, Professor History Emeritus at Alabama State University, wrote this in reply. Dear Sen. Shealy, Your recent letter to the editor of the State newspaper of 12-7-2015 (“Let’s Get Past Race and Fix Current Problems”) was welcomed…
W. Kirk Wood
January 4, 2016
Podcast

Podcast Episode 7

The Week in Review at the Abbeville Institute, December 28, 2015-January 1, 2016. Topics: Southern literature, the year in review, John C. Calhoun, slavery, the Confederate Flag, Southern film, California. https://soundcloud.com/the-abbeville-institute/episode-7
Brion McClanahan
January 3, 2016
Media Posts

The Old South and the New South

Brion McClanahan discusses the continuity between the Old South and the New South and the Jeffersonian understanding of the War for Southern Independence at the October 2015 Conference in Stone Mountain, GA. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QYzD2vhNE3c
Brion McClanahan
January 3, 2016
Media Posts

The Army of the Dead

Author Barbara Marthal discusses her Southern heritage through stories and song at the October 2015 Abbeville Institute Conference in Stone Mountain, GA. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vp9JF4tzIJg
Barbara Marthal
January 3, 2016
Blog

Top Ten

Our top ten for 2015: 1. Lies My Teacher Told Me: The True History of the War for Southern Independence by Clyde Wilson 2. Was the Civil War About Slavery? by Dave Benner 3. The Dark Side of Abraham Lincoln by Thomas Landess 4. What is a Southerner? by Clyde Wilson 5. Why Do They Hate the South and Its…
Brion McClanahan
January 2, 2016
Blog

2015 in Review

Sean Hannity begins his nationally syndicated radio talk show by welcoming listeners to “the revolution.”  This is a clever marketing ploy, but nothing Hannity discusses is truly revolutionary nor that inspiring.  Many thoughtful listeners are left searching for a voice that articulates their worldview, particularly in the South. Some of these people—not just Southerners—have ended up at the Abbeville Institute. …
Brion McClanahan
January 1, 2016
Media Posts

The Confederate Rule of Law

Marshall DeRosa on "The Confederate Rule of Law: An American Patrimony Worth Fighting For, Then and Now," from the October 2015 Abbeville Institute Conference in Stone Mountain, GA. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WzAqFXj3Fds
Marshall DeRosa
December 31, 2015
Blog

So Red the Rose

You might not find Stark Young's So Red The Rose in current recommendations of novels set during the civil war era, but Young's novel, published in 1934, was a record-breaking best seller, so popular with the reading public that it was made into a Hollywood film. It differs from most novels in that it doesn't have a protagonist, nor is…
Gail Jarvis
December 31, 2015
Clyde Wilson Library

Introduction to James Pettigrew’s Notes on Spain

Introduction This is James Johnston Pettigrew’s only book, privately printed in Charleston in the first weeks of the War between the States and here for the first time published. In the opening passage the author describes himself crossing the Alps on his way to seek service in the army of the king of Sardinia. His mission was to take part…
Clyde Wilson
December 30, 2015
Review Posts

The Immortals

THE IMMORTALS: A STORY OF LOVE AND WAR In 1861, as a deadly conflict looms between North and South, Charleston sits like a queen upon the waters—beautiful, proud and prosperous—and no native son loves her more than George Taylor. A successful Broad Street lawyer, Taylor has won the heart of an enchanting young woman and looks forward to a brilliant…
Karen Stokes
December 29, 2015
Podcast

Podcast Episode 6

The Week in Review at the Abbeville Institute, December 21-25, 2015 Topics: Christmas, Paris, Mt. Vernon, Arlington House, Nathaniel Macon https://soundcloud.com/the-abbeville-institute/episode-6
Brion McClanahan
December 28, 2015
Blog

Rebels of the Golden State

On July fourth 1861, Major J.P. Gillis made a public display of his support of colonial secession from the British Empire as well as Southern secession from the United States by parading in the streets with a Confederate flag of his own design. He drew cheers from a large crowd of onlookers, but two men named Curtis Clark and J.W.…
Matt De Santi
December 28, 2015
Review Posts

Christmas in Richmond, 1864

This piece is taken from Varina Davis's recollections of life in the South, published in the New York World on December 13, 1896, and reprinted here. ...Rice, flour, molasses and tiny pieces of meat, most of them sent to the President's wife anonymously to be distributed to the poor, had all be weighed and issued, and the playtime of the…
Varina Davis
December 25, 2015
Blog

A Christmas Story for the Old South

This piece was originally published on the Canada Free Press. Much to the annoyance of multiculturists, Christmas is still America’s most celebrated holiday, and in the weeks preceding this festive time, traditional Christmas stories will appear on television screens. We can expect to see numerous versions of Charles Dickens renowned tale, A Christmas Carol, O.Henry’s The Gift of the Magi,and…
Gail Jarvis
December 24, 2015
Blog

Sayings By or For Southerners, Part XXIII

The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with an average voter -- Winston Churchill Democracy is the worst form of government, except for every other kind that has been tried. --Churchill The lowest common denominator in America is a lot lower than it used to be. –Clyde Wilson The rebels have exhibited a most wonderful energy and skill…
Clyde Wilson
December 23, 2015
Review Posts

For the Paris Dead

The Wehrmacht coveted the wealth of France, its grain, vines, ports, its past—and Paris most of all.  They planned, and took their shining chance. Admiring it, they didn’t want its ghost,   or ruins!  They too were Franks.  “Leben wie Gott in Frankreich” was their watchword.   Notre-Dame, the Eiffel Tower, Concorde, the Louvre besot them: vital presence, history, art.  The…
Catharine Savage Brosman
December 22, 2015
Podcast

Podcast Episode 5

The Week in Review at the Abbeville Institute, December 14-18, 2015 Host: Brion McClanahan Topics: The PC Attack on the South, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, Southern politics, Northern opposition to Mr. Lincoln's War https://soundcloud.com/the-abbeville-institute/episode-5
Brion McClanahan
December 21, 2015
Blog

A Tale of Two Plantations

In the 1850s, Ann Pamela Cunningham, a frail woman from South Carolina, was responsible for preserving the plantation home of George Washington, founding the Mount Vernon Ladies' Association, an organization which still maintains this historic site. Thanks to her efforts, Mount Vernon remained virtually untouched during the War for Southern Independence. Arlington Plantation, the beautiful Virginia home of Robert E.…
Karen Stokes
December 21, 2015