Tag

Southern History

Review Posts

Adventures in the Southwest

A Review of Doniphan’s Expedition, Containing an Account of the Conquest of New Mexico . . .  by John T. Hughes.  Cincinnati, 1847 and Reid’s Tramp, or a Journal of the Incidents of Ten Months Travel Through Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, Sonora, and California by John Coleman Reid.  Selma, Ala., 1858. The Mexican War and its aftermath turned American attention…
Clyde Wilson
May 21, 2019
Blog

Driving Through Virginia, Part II

The first English settlement in what is now Hampton was started in 1610, when Colonist under Governor Sir Thomas Gates captured a Native American village, Kecoughtan.  Forts Henry and Charles were early defensive work in the area, but by 1637 were abandoned. Hampton is the oldest continually occupied English town in America since Jamestowne was later abandoned. Called Elizabeth Cittie…
Brett Moffatt
May 10, 2019
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Sins and Virtues of “Civil War” History

History is remembered as a narrative, not facts and figures. If the story is told from the viewpoint of past sins, the rendering condemns our ancestors and makes us ashamed of our legacy. If it is told from the viewpoint of ancestral virtues, it leaves us proud of our tradition and inspired to build upon the accomplishments of those who…
Philip Leigh
April 26, 2019
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A Copperhead Loves the South

CONFEDERATE MEMORIAL DAY ADDRESS  22 April 2019 American by birth -- Southern by the grace of God!  I come from a true Southern state, South Dakota, and I am honored to be probably the first Dakotan to give the Memorial Day address at the capital of the Confederacy. Last week I had a conference call with a man from Michigan,…
John A. Eidsmoe
April 25, 2019
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An Image of the South

“It is out of fashion these days to look backward rather than forward,” the poet John Crowe Ransom wrote almost thirty years ago. “About the only American given to it is some unreconstructed Southerner, who persists in his regard for a certain terrain, a certain history, and a certain inherited way of living.” Ransom made the remark in an essay…
Louis D. Rubin, Jr.
April 17, 2019
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Driving Through Virginia

Southeast Virginia is a region rich in history, from the earliest colonial times to today’s modern military.  Cape Henry welcomes visitors today, just as it did the Virginia Company colonists in 1607, just before they settled at Jamestown.  First Landing State Park commemorates where the colonists first entered Chesapeake Bay, seeking a site for settlement. One of Virginia’s oldest and…
Brett Moffatt
March 1, 2019
Blog

In Search of the Real Southern Democrat

It was an indelible moment, one that has resonated with me up to the present day. My father and I had gone to whatever permutation of Wal-Mart existed at that time in Union County in late 1982.  (Maybe it was still Edwards then, maybe Big K; the chronology is no longer clear so many years later.)  He was a supervisor…
Randall Ivey
February 21, 2019
Review Posts

Stealing History

A Review of The Years of Lyndon Johnson: Means of Ascent (Knopf Publishing Company, 1990) by Robert Caro "I have read his bandit gospel writ in burnished rows of steel: 'As ye deal with my pretensions, so with you my wrath shall deal; Let the faithless son of Freedom crush the patriot with his heel; Lo, Greed is marching on.'"…
Charles Goolsby
February 5, 2019
Blog

Orwell’s America

In the ongoing war against Southern Confederate heritage, we need to be cognizant of the academic pressures against it. As y'all know, UNC Chapel Hill recently tore down Silent Sam. This is going on throughout all the great Southern schools. As a professional scholar, I was a member of the Society for the Study of Southern Literature; the Southern Historical…
Alphonse-Louis Vinh
January 31, 2019
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John C. Calhoun’s Foreign Policy: “A Wise and Masterly Inactivity”

The dominant powers in American discourse today have succeeded in confining the South to a dark little corner of history labeled “Slavery and Treason.” This is already governing the public sphere of the Civil War Sesquicentennial. Such an approach not only libels the South, it is a fatal distortion of American history in general, and, I dare say, even of…
Clyde Wilson
January 23, 2019
Blog

The Southern Tradition

Many years ago the historian Francis Parkman wrote a passage in one of his narratives which impresses me as full of wisdom and prophecy. After a brilliant characterization of the colonies as they existed on the eve of the Revolution, he said, “The essential antagonism of Virginia and New England was afterwards to become, and to remain, an element of…
Richard M. Weaver
January 14, 2019
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The Cost of Southern Cultural Genocide

The destruction of Confederate monuments and the slandering of all things Confederate is in vogue in contemporary mainline media, academia, and the political establishment. The destruction of Confederate monuments by radical mobs is similar to the radical Taliban’s destruction of Buddhist monuments and the Soviet Union’s denial of public expressions of native culture in the Baltic states—all are examples of…
James Ronald Kennedy
January 9, 2019
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What Are Symbols For?

In 1875, Rev. Moses Drury Hoge stood before 40,000 people in Richmond, Virginia, at the foot of the newly dedicated statue of Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson, and delivered what one historian called the "noblest oration of his later life." He believed that in the future, the path to that statue would be "trodden" by the feet of travelers from "the…
Brion McClanahan
December 21, 2018
Review Posts

Forrest McDonald and the Art of History

A review of Recovering the Past: A Historian's Memoir (University Press of Kansas, 2004) by Forrest McDonald “History is marble, and remains forever cold, even under the most artistic hand, unless life is breathed into it by the imagination. Then the marble becomes flesh and blood—then it feels, it thinks, it moves, and is immortal.” —Charles Gayarré (1805-1895) It is…
Stephen M. Klugewicz
December 11, 2018
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How to Run the American Revolution: Belated Advice

In the spirit of historical course correction, I herewith submit some thoughts to those who may find themselves in an American Revolution between 1774 and 1783. 1. Rule number one. Don’t cooperate with any leaders, even if you appointed them. If you do, such cooperation will later be taken as proof that you were just obeying the commands of some…
Joseph R. Stromberg
November 23, 2018
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Driving Through Dixie

Citizens of Dixie…. This is a call to arms, or rather, a call to your legs and feet.  Get up off that couch! If you don’t have family plans, ballgame, school play, or church event- get out and tour Dixie!  Take a few hours, a day, or a weekend, and see the beauty and history of Dixie. Start local; tour…
Brett Moffatt
November 22, 2018
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Why Aren’t Americans Interested in History?

The study of history cannot be neatly contained behind the tall foreboding doors of an ivory tower nor swept under the rugs of dusty corner offices housing stacks of paper. It bleeds into other fields as it serves to inform both individual and group identity. It gives context to the current world and helps one understand their place in it…
Jonathan Harris
November 9, 2018
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History and Social Justice Activism

I recently traveled with ten undergraduate students to the Conference on Faith and History (CFH) held at Calvin College, Grand Rapids Michigan.  This was an exciting and enriching trip for our students.  They, along with other history students from across the country, presented research papers at the undergraduate portion of the conference. For the past fifteen years I have attended…
Samuel C. Smith
November 8, 2018
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The Old South’s Poor Whites

There was a time, before universal white male suffrage and the closing of the frontier, when the poor whites of the South were considered shiftless and without caste. If we were to look at the South as a hierarchical system, it could be argued that the poor whites were a kind of pariah. There’s a common misconception that all whites…
Michael Martin
October 11, 2018
Review Posts

In Defense of Andrew Jackson

A review of In Defense of Andrew Jackson by Brad Birzer (Regnery History, 2018). Andrew Jackson, who Davy Crockett famously mocked as “the great man in the white house,” occupies an entire epoch in American history. In almost every conceivable way, he was a classic paradox – a benevolent crusader to his friends, and a despotic tyrant to his enemies.…
Dave Benner
October 9, 2018
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Why Was General Earl Van Dorn Murdered?

In some ways, historians are like anyone else: they hate to make mistakes. But if you write enough, sooner or later, you will make a mistake—I assure you. I certainly have, but I have been more fortunate than most. Sometimes, mistakes benefit you. What I suppose are my two most significant errors to date came more than two decades apart,…
Samuel W. Mitcham
October 4, 2018
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What’s in a (Generational) Name?

The whole 20th century was a horrible time for the friends of tradition:  the mild rule of Europe’s Christian monarchs - Habsburgs, Romanovs, and others - was replaced by the ruthless Communists and later the despotism of the European Union, amongst other totalitarian ‘isms’; Mao overthrew Confucius in China; the natural rhythms of the agrarian life in many places of…
Walt Garlington
September 28, 2018
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Fighters

Editor's Note: The text is taken from Tom Skeyhill's, His Own Life Story And War Diary, a collection of interviews Skeyhill conducted with World War I Medal of Honor recipient Alvin C. York of Pall Mall, TN in the 1920s. I ain’t had much of the larnin’ that comes out of books. I’m a-trying to overcome that, but it ain’t…
Alvin C. York
September 19, 2018
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When New Yorkers Cheered Dixie

On October 31, 1910—seven years after the Wright Brother’s first airplane flight of less than a minute—seventy-five thousand spectators gathered at Belmont Park to watch a day of competition among pioneering aviators. Events culminated with a thirty-six mile round trip race between Belmont Park to the Statue of Liberty. Only three aviators attempted the trip, which had about one million…
Philip Leigh
September 7, 2018
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Fake News and Fake History

The “Fake News” appellation has been applied to just about every outlet that presents itself as something on the order of a news outlet, manned (yes--the word) by what are christened as journalists. The ill-use of the “J-Word” provides enough tidings for an essay a yard and a half long, but that is another write for another day (Charly Reese…
Paul H. Yarbrough
August 31, 2018
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History as a (Leftist) Weapon

There is a tendency for each generation to assume its opinions are the ultimate correct opinions. But each generation's beliefs are typically modified by succeeding generations. Unfortunately, societal structures are sometimes altered based on contemporary notions that lose credence over time. This is the case with Social Justice Warriors in this generation. They demand that whatever doesn't suit present-day social…
Gail Jarvis
August 30, 2018
Review Posts

A Society With Slaves

A review Slave and Free on Virginia’s Eastern Shore by Kirk Mariner (Onancok, VA: Miona Publications, 2014). The book can be purchased by emailing Miona Publications. One of the ironies that plague the proponents of the “South is about slavery and slavery is about the South” school of history is the lack of knowledge we possess regarding the everyday lives and social…
John Devanny
August 21, 2018
Blog

Sam Houston and Texas Secession

"Lincoln, under no circumstances, would I vote for ... So, I say, stand by the 'Constitution and the Union', and so long as the laws are enacted and administered according to the Constitution we are safe ..." (emphasis added) Letter from Sam Houston to Colonel A. Daly, August 14, 1860 The 1860 Election was still 3 months in the future and…
Vito Mussomeli
July 12, 2018
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Saving Architectural Treasures of the Old South

In the film version of Margaret Mitchell’s Gone With the Wind, after Atlanta has been burned and Scarlett O’Hara is fleeing to Tara, there is a scene where she arrives at neighboring Twelve Oaks Plantation to find it burned by Yankee troops and in ruins. The mansion’s once-grand double staircase is open to the night sky, and a cow appears…
Blog

Is Dixie A Captive Nation?

Is the South today a captive nation? Most Southerners would never consider the question—most likely because they would deem the issue to be absurd. But is it inane to ask such a question—is it forbidden in politically correct America to ask such a “confrontational” question? Conservatives would immediately dismiss such rhetorical questions as being unpatriotic or even treasonous—after all, everyone…
Blog

Shrine of the South

One of the foremost scholars of the Southern Cause lives in New Market, Virginia. He has never written a book, authored a scholarly thesis, or lectured at a university. Instead, he built a museum – a rather impressive museum – dedicated to historical truth and brimming with valuable period artifacts. Having visited just about all the “Civil War” and Confederate…
Louis T. March
June 27, 2018
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All the News That’s Fit to Print

Fort Sumter was the beginning not only of a bloody conflict, but it forged a generation of war correspondents that would culminate in live action reporting one-hundred and thirty years later. These faltering beginnings by the Civil War correspondents would reach their highest form during the Desert Storm war. During this action, Americans saw on prime time television the missiles…
Norman E. Rourke
June 15, 2018
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The Cult of the Lost Cause

History is the propaganda of the victorious. - Voltaire According to an explanation of “The Lost Cause” from the web site of the Virginia Historical Society: Former Confederates crafted a historical interpretation of the Civil War to reconcile the prewar society they admired and the devastation that accompanied southern defeat. The “Lost Cause” narrative was developed by former Confederates who…
H.V. Traywick, Jr.
June 7, 2018
Blog

Confederate West Virginia

Confederate West Virginia has always been an enigma. A bright fellow riding through Monroe County was intrigued by the Confederate monument in a field near Union. This biker-hiker-writer Michael Abraham wondered why. For clues, he went straight to local historians ‘Bud’ Robertson and Stuart McGeehee. In his thoughtful book, The Spine of the Virginias (2010, Pocahontas Press; Blacksburg, Virginia) he…
Frank Ball
June 4, 2018
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The Wrong Side of History

I've always been fascinated by those tricky slogans politicians and social activists use to dupe the public. These cleverly crafted catchphrases are short, simple, easily understood and tend to stick with people. A currently popular catchphrase is “The wrong side of history” which has been defined as: “Having policies or practices that are perceived as not progressive or enlightened; behaving…
Gail Jarvis
June 1, 2018
Blog

White Knights of the North

When the majority of people think of the Ku Klux Klan, there undoubtedly comes to mind a relic of post-Confederate racism that has now morphed into dangerous groups of rabidly anti-Black Southerners dressed in white hoods, burning crosses and waving Confederate Battle Flags. However, the real story of the White Knights of the Invisible Empire, as they were also referred…
John Marquardt
May 24, 2018
Review Posts

Death by Taxes

A review of For Good and Evil: The Impact of Taxes on the Course of Civilization by Charles Adams (Madison Books, 2001). Why can’t American Presidents learn that if you raise taxes on the American people they will vote you out? George Bush crashed because he raised taxes, and Bill Clinton will go down as soon as the people get…
William J. Quirk
May 15, 2018
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How the Neocons Destroyed Southern Conservatism

No discussion of Southern conservatism, its history and its relationship to what is termed broadly the “American conservative movement” would be complete without an examination of events that have transpired over the past fifty years and the pivotal role of the powerful intellectual current known as Neoconservatism. From the 1950s into the 1980s Southerners who defended the traditions of the…
Boyd Cathey
May 2, 2018
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Victor Davis Hanson Hates the Confederacy…and the South

“Conservative” writer and classicist Victor Davis Hanson hates the Confederacy and the South; he has demonstrated this repeatedly in recent years through his articles published in National Review (where he is a senior contributor) and in other venues (see, for example, “Sherman’s War,” November 9, 1999; “California Goes Confederate,” Jewish World Review, February 9, 2017;  “The Strange Case of Confederate…
Boyd Cathey
April 12, 2018
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When Historians Lie

Eminent historian Dr. Clyde Wilson in one of his many books on American history expresses this sentiment about the "old-style history:" History is not an expression of abstract laws, or the record of progress. It is a description of the actions of men, of life, which in turn is an expression of the (partly unknowable) mind of God. The historical…
Jonathan Harris
April 11, 2018
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The Arkansas Traveler

It was Tuesday evening, September 16th, and people all across America were settling down for the first performance of a new CBS comedy and music program.  Rather than watching the show on fifty-inch TV screens with names like Sony, Samsung and Panasonic, since the year was 1941, they would be gathered in front of AM radio sets bearing such then…
John Marquardt
April 5, 2018
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His Truth is Marching On

Social activist Julia Ward wrote “The Battle Hymn of the Republic” in 1861, the same year that Henry Timrod composed his “Ethnogenesis” (the poem which kicked off part 2 of this series). In it, she penned that God will use His “terrible swift sword” to bring judgment upon “condemners” and “crush the serpent with his heel.” The wicked this New…
Dissident Mama
March 23, 2018
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The Lost Tribes of the Irish in the South

Mr. President, and Ladies and Gentlemen: I am speaking but the plain truth when I tell you that I would rather be here tonight facing an assemblage of men and women of Irish blood and Irish breeding than in any other banquet hall on earth. For I am one who is Irish and didn't know it; but now that I…
Irvin S. Cobb
March 19, 2018
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This is why the Founding Generation Crafted the 2nd Amendment

With the current heated debate over gun rights and the 2nd Amendment of the United States Constitution (which serves to affirm our natural rights…rights we have whether the State recognizes them or not), I thought it might be interesting to talk briefly about the Battle of Athens. If you’re like a lot of people, you probably haven’t heard about this…
Lewis Liberman
March 9, 2018
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The Barbarians at the Gates

Since the 1960s, the interpretation of Southern history and the War Between the States put forth by most of the news media and academia is largely a fraud. It is driven by the racist identity politics of the Democrat Party and not historical truth. If Southern history was interpreted objectively as it was before 1960, instead of with liberal political…
Gene Kizer, Jr.
March 8, 2018
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Confederate History of the Maryland Flag

It is near impossible to express any admiration of the antebellum South without incurring the wrath of the perpetually offended mob, online or otherwise.  Even acknowledgment in the accomplishments of those men once universally and unequivocally admired by all Americans, such as Washington, Jefferson, and Lee, now brings the occasional sneer or mark of condemnation from “polite” society.  Unfortunately, for…
Reverdy Johnson
March 5, 2018
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The Plundered South

Address by Sam H. Jones, Governor of Louisiana to the Southern Farm Bureau Training School, Monroe, La., August 18, 1943 The history of mankind relates many stories where superior military force has conquered nations of superior civilization. In the wake of overwhelming brute force the great citadels of culture and economic and social progress have fallen never to rise again.…
Sam H. Jones
January 31, 2018
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Hate the South Week

‘Just a post, just a post, just a post on a blog, just a post, just a post, and the war has begun’ (To the tune of “Sloth,” Fairport Convention, ca. 1978) General Uncivil Background Blessed as we are -- so the economists say (they never lie) -– with relentless, inescapable digital bother and cyber-mania, any one of us might…
Joseph R. Stromberg
December 13, 2017
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Slavery and the Confederacy

What happened in the unseen labyrinth to which the pneumatic tubes led, he did not know in detail, but he did know in general terms. As soon as all the corrections which happened to be necessary in any particular number of ‘The Times’ had been assembled and collated, that number would be reprinted, the original copy destroyed, and the corrected…
Kirkpatrick Sale
October 26, 2017
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American History Textbooks vs. Reality

Donald Trump made the following statement at a recent rally in Phoenix, Arizona on August 22: “In the proud tradition of America's great leaders, from George Washington -- please, don't take his statue down, please. PLEASE! Does anybody want George Washington's statue? No. Is that sad? To Lincoln, to Teddy Roosevelt, I see they want to take Teddy Roosevelt's down,…
Michael Martin
October 20, 2017
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Lincoln or Lee? What Would Hitler Say?

"Some crazy person just compared President Abraham Lincoln to Hitler. Yes, this just happened on CNN and Brooke Baldwin's reaction was perfect." So scribbled one Ricky Davila on Social Media (Twitter). Indeed, an elderly Southern gentleman had ventured that President Lincoln, not General Lee, murdered civilians, a point even a Court historian and a Lincoln idolater like Doris Kearns Goodwin…
Ilana Mercer
September 7, 2017
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Party Truths

Recent years have seen a new revisionist theme emerge in the history of America’s two principal, modern-day political parties – the Democrats and Republicans. In the new debate, two questions have emerged: Did the two parties switch platforms at any point in history? And did the Democrats, with its longtime Southern stronghold, always have a monopoly on racism and white…
Ryan Walters
September 4, 2017
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American Presidents, Slavery, and the Confederacy

The current pogrom against Southern history and symbols ignores the influence the South and the institution of slavery had on most American presidents. American history would not be the same without it. If the current goal is to purge any reminder of slavery and the Confederacy from the public sphere, then nearly every American president would have to be withdrawn…
Clyde Wilson
August 30, 2017
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Lyon Gardiner Tyler and Southern History

Delivered at the 2017 Abbeville Institute Summer School. The attack on the so-called “lost cause” myth in American history is nothing new. Beginning in the 1950s and 60s, historians like Kenneth Stampp began a concerted effort to undermine the dominant historical interpretation of the War, namely that the War and Reconstruction had been stains on American history, that the War…
Brion McClanahan
August 18, 2017
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We Long to be Free!

An Address given on the Occasion of the Observance of Confederate Flag Day Raleigh, North Carolina | 03 March 2017 SEVEN SCORE AND SIXTEEN YEARS AGO, our fathers brought forth on this continent a new union, freely chosen and legally adopted by eleven Southern States with the consent of the people, and expressed through their chosen delegates in solemn assembly;…
Paul C. Graham
August 2, 2017
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You Are Deplorable

Presented at the 2017 Abbeville Institute Summer School. You are deplorable. It is worse than that.  If you are Southern or interested in the South you are the most deplorable of all the deplorables.  There is no place for you among the enlightened and virtuous people of 21st Century America. But perhaps there is a certain advantage to being an…
Clyde Wilson
July 24, 2017
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The Absurdity of Racial Correctness Exposed

This article was originally printed at Townhall.com A couple of days ago, a friend of mine from Alabama shared on his Facebook wall an article from Alabama Political Reporter by a Mr. Josh Moon. The title is, “An Apology for White People.” Moon, a white man, writes that “white people in Alabama (and other states too, I presume)…like to pretend a lot…
Jack Kerwick
July 6, 2017
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Southern Identity and the Southern Tradition

In the popular imagination the South is viewed as a region typified by racism, poverty, and ignorance save a few special islands, such as Chapel Hill and Charlotte, which lay in the archipelago of enlightenment.  There are some cracks in this edifice of Yankee bigotry, but when political and cultural wars become heated, the edifice is trotted out once more…
John Devanny
July 5, 2017
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“It is history that teaches us to hope”

Malcolm X wrote that “History is a weapon.” He was right, and no topic encompasses this truth more than the War of Northern Aggression. And the most practical way we rebels can advance in this post-modern war being waged against the South is simply education. Sounds cliche, right? But how can we expect anyone who doesn’t have a clue about our past, its people and their divergent ancestry,…
Dissident Mama
July 3, 2017
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“Free People of Color” in Dixie

This article is the abbreviated address that I made at the Upcountry Literary Festival 2017, at the University of South Carolina, in Union South, Carolina. Some people come for the land down under (Australia). I come from the land where old times are not forgotten. I started my presentation by singing the old spiritual entitled, Wade in the Water, God’s…
Barbara Marthal
June 30, 2017
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Is the Confederacy Obsolete?

This article was originally published in Southern Partisan magazine in 1994. The past—what we believe happened and what we think it means—can be a very slippery customer. Even the recent past can be elusive. In the early 1950s, when I was a student at Johns Hopkins, C. Vann Woodward gave an amusing but provocative talk called "Can We Believe Our…
Ludwell H. Johnson
June 23, 2017
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The Ad Too Hot to Print—Progressive Censorship in Action

The promise of “Freedom of the Press” becomes meaningless when large national “Progressive/Liberal” conglomerates maintain a virtual monopoly on access to newsprint within a given geographical area. Their virtual monopoly provides them with the opportunity to highlight the words and actions of their fellow Progressives while denying those who were slandered or attacked the opportunity to respond. The Nazi Minister…
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The Forgotten History of the Confederate Flag

The Confederate battle flag is, as John Coski of the Museum of the Confederacy titled his book on the subject, “America’s most embattled emblem.” Recent polls show that Americans are split down the middle on the flag: half view it as a symbol of heritage, half as a symbol of hatred (and an overwhelming majority are against tearing it down…
Review Posts

Poor but Proud

A review of J. Wayne Flynt, Dixie's Forgotten People: The South's Poor Whites. Bloomington and London: Indiana University Press, 1979. Professor Flynt, the author of this volume, concentrates on the economic condition and the cultural life of poor white South­erners, but does not fail to mention some of the vices of the American majority, especially the attempt, often unsuccessful, to…
Michael Jordan
June 13, 2017
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Virginia’s Lost Counties

You can stand on the station platform at Harpers Ferry and see three States, two battlefields, two rivers and a panorama of natural scenery which the Kiwanis Club calls "the Little Switzerland of America" and which Thomas Jefferson said was "one of the most stupendous scenes in nature...worth a voyage across the Atlantic." Where the chasm yawns beneath and Shenandoah…
Holmes Alexander
May 19, 2017
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Be Proud You’re a Rebel

I was born and raised in Richmond, Virginia, the capital of the Confederate States of America (CSA) from April 1861 to April 1865. Pictured above is the statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee on the city’s famous Monument Avenue. The grand cobblestone street is also adorned with statues of generals J.E.B. Stuart and Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson, and Confederate president…
Dissident Mama
May 16, 2017
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Why the Southern Tradition is Winning

The title of this piece may seem odd in light of recent events in New Orleans and the mass hysteria over all things Confederate since June 2015. Monuments have come down, flags have been furled, and streets have been renamed. While these are certainly loses, they are mere skirmishes in a wider cultural war that the Left is losing. They…
Brion McClanahan
May 10, 2017
Review Posts

Reflections of a Ghost

Of the twelve agrarians who wrote the, symposium I'll Take My Stand, only three are alive: Robert Penn Warren, the poet and novelist, Lyle Lanier, a psychologist and former executive vice-president of the University of Illinois, and myself, a writer and reader of fiction. I don't presume to speak either for Warren or Lanier, and I don't know how to…
Andrew Nelson Lytle
April 20, 2017
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The South and Her People

Originally published at www.circa1865.com The conservative and noble Christian civilization of the South described below has all but vanished as the New South of industrial capitalism, materialism and commercial vulgarity supplanted it. Remarks of J.C.C. Black, at the Unveiling of the Benjamin H. Hill Statue, Atlanta, Georgia, May 1, 1886 (excerpt): “As to us, was not prompted by hatred of…
Bernard Thuersam
April 18, 2017
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Jefferson New and Improved

I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just. — THOMAS JEFFERSON A Review of In Pursuit of Reason: The Life of Thomas Jefferson, by Noble E. Cunningham. Jr., Baton Rouge and London: Louisiana State University Press, 1987. 414 pages. With the exception of the driven and depressed Lincoln, no major figure in American history is in…
Clyde Wilson
April 12, 2017
Review Posts

Tolerating the South’s Past

The Age of Enlightenment represented the Middle Ages as a Gothic night—an interlude of ignorance and superstition when men were enveloped in a cowl, oblivious to the wonders of knowledge, and concerned only with escape from the miseries of this world and of hell. Voltaire said that Dante was considered a great poet because no one read him, that a…
Blog

Bernard Baruch: Son of the South

On the morning of July 5, 1880, Colonel E.B.C. Cash and Colonel William M. Shannon faced each other with pistols near Du Bose's bridge in Darlington County, S,C. At a word of command, Shannon fired quickly, splashing the muddy ground at the feet of his adversary. Colonel Cash, an experienced duelist with a sinister reputation, coolly took aim and fired.…
Charles Goolsby
March 24, 2017
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Southern Heritage Then and Now

Order of the Southern Cross Banquet, Sons of Confederate Veterans National Reunion, Asheville, North Carolina, August 1, 2003 As the direct descendant of a private in the 42nd North Carolina and a sergeant in the 20th North Carolina, I am honoured to talk to a group descended from notable officers in our War of Independence--or the War to Prevent Southern…
Clyde Wilson
March 22, 2017
Review Posts

The Shining Spirits

Why the South Will Survive, by Fifteen Southerners. Edited by Clyde N. Wilson. Athens: The University of Georgia Press, 1981. As a naturalized Southerner (born in the North but educated in the South) it is a delight to discover this hard intellectual diamond among the soft dunghills of contemporary American publishing. The fifteen separate essays contained in this work deserve…
Jeffrey St. John
March 21, 2017
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Coit’s Calhoun

Want to learn about one of the greatest statesmen that the United States has ever produced?  Then get hold of John C. Calhoun: American Portrait by Margaret Coit. When this beautifully-written book received the Pulitzer Prize for Biography in 1951, it was generally agreed that Coit had redeemed Calhoun as a major and admirable, even heroic, figure in American history.  Even…
Clyde Wilson
March 17, 2017
Review Posts

A Deep Devotion to the Constitution

According to the modern historical establishment, John C. Calhoun is the ultimate American villain. These esteemed historians think lofty assessments from previous decades failed to account for his glaring inconsistencies in regard to federal power, his advocacy for American imperialism, or his well-known defense of slavery and racism. Historians may have been critical of Calhoun's advancement of the "positive good"…
Brion McClanahan
March 14, 2017
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New England Against America

The Fiction of Mr. Simms gave indication, we repeat, of genius, and that of no common order. Had he been even a Yankee, this genius would have been rendered immediately manifest to his countrymen, but unhappily (perhaps) he was a Southerner His book, therefore, depended entirely upon its own intrinsic value and resources, but with these it made its way…
Clyde Wilson
March 2, 2017
Blog

Southern Nullification and the Stamp Act

Every so often, a candid examination of current events makes famous incidents in American history altogether relevant again. In my mind no incident demonstrates this more than the Stamp Act Crisis of 1765. Few episodes in American history have so effectively proved how to confront and end the enactment of malignant and unconstitutional laws. In 1765, the standard American position…
Dave Benner
February 24, 2017
Blog

Washington vs. Lincoln

Abraham Lincoln and George Washington stare silently at one another across the reflecting pool on the National Mall in Washington D.C., their paths inextricably linked by the historians who consider both to be the greatest presidents in American history. One is a monument, a testament to the man and his influence on American history, the other a memorial to the…
Brion McClanahan
February 22, 2017
Blog

Finding the Swamp Fox

John Oller, The Swamp Fox: How Francis Marion Saved the American Revolution (Da Capo Press, 2016) Francis Marion is better remembered today than he used to be. There was a time, however, when, outside of his native South Carolina, hardly anyone without a good knowledge of the Southern theatre of the American Revolution would have heard of him. And there…
Jeff Rogers
February 20, 2017
Blog

Attack on Robert E. Lee is an Assault on American History Itself

Early in February, the City Council of Charlottesville, Virginia voted 3-2 to remove a bronze equestrian monument to Robert E. Lee that stands in a downtown park named in his honor. Vice Mayor Wes Belamy, the council's only African American member, led the effort to remove the statue. In the end, this vote may be largely symbolic. Those opposed to…
Allan Brownfield
February 14, 2017
Blog

The Continuing Relevance of Calhoun’s Wisdom

I am always glad to talk about my favourite subject–-John C. Calhoun. I think it will become apparent that what he has to say has some relevance to our topic “Building Communities of Resistance”—and perhaps in surprising ways that have little to do with the familiar lessons of State rights and nullification. By the way, despite what you may hear…
Clyde Wilson
February 8, 2017
Blog

Recovering Southern History

Every historian has a viewpoint, shaped by his own background, values, and perception of the present. The relationship between background and viewpoint is not necessarily simple. As in the case of Supreme Court nominees, one cannot always predict in advance in what direction a historians background, modified by research and thought, will lead. At any rate, we properly measure a…
Clyde Wilson
January 18, 2017
Review Posts

Old Western Man: C.S. Lewis and the Old South

I write not as an expert to tell you of my thought but to explain a particular concept of Lewis's and my own application of it to the Old South. Almost everyone knows something about C.S. Lewis as a writer of extremely readable children's books (about the land of Narnia that can be entered through the back of an old…
Sheldon Vanauken
January 10, 2017
Blog

Dan Sickles and the First Presidential Cover-Up

In our time, we think we know a lot about presidential cover-ups. There was Nixon's Watergate, of course. Some of us remember Lyndon Johnson's problems with Bobby Baker. And President Kennedy had his secret girlfriends. All of these, however, are minor matters compared to the granddaddy of them all, the biggest presidential cover-up in American history, the murder of Barton…
William H. Hunter
January 9, 2017
Blog

Things as They Are

William S. Belko, Philip Pendleton Barbour in Jacksonian America: An Old Republican in King Andrew’s Court (The University of Alabama Press, 2016). Sometimes a professional historian gets it right. William Belko has produced a quality tome that both expands and enhances our understanding of American history. While most academics write about the same subjects and regurgitate fashionable theories with “new”…
Brion McClanahan
January 6, 2017
Blog

A State of Mind

On June 7, 1776, Richard Henry Lee of Virginia offered a resolution to the Second Continental Congress, then meeting in Philadelphia, which began with the epic demand, “ That these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States.”   After a month of heated deliberation, the Congress finally adopted Thomas Jefferson’s Declaration of Independence which…
John Marquardt
January 5, 2017
Review Posts

J. Evetts Haley and the Mind of the South

American historians often write of a contrast between the South, a closed reactionary society, and the West, free and open and characteristically American. The dichotomy thus presented is a false one. The West is the South. That is, to the extent that the West is a theatre for heroic action, rather than just a place to start a new business,…
Guy Story Brown
January 3, 2017
Blog

The Year in Review

Senator Sam Ervin of North Carolina told a friend in 1980 that, "I'm bound to confess that President Carter has instilled some foreboding in prospect to the outcome of the election....As I interpret his campaign sermon, President Carter said states' rights had become as obscene as any four-letter word, and Ronald Reagan had proved his unfitness for the presidency by telling…
Brion McClanahan
December 30, 2016
Blog

When the South Was America 1607-1861

Dr. Donald Livingston on "When the South Was America, 1607-1861" at the 2016 Abbeville Institute Summer School on "The Southern Tradition and the Renewal of America," June 2016. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RW4M46JXXzE
Donald Livingston
December 27, 2016
Blog

Stereotyping the South Up North

The 1861-65 war destroyed the American South’s economic, legal, political and social systems, and afterward ruled the region with proconsuls dispatched from Washington. From this aftermath of war came the invented view of the desolated South – a section known in antebellum times for providing the majority of presidents and exemplary political thinkers — as an uncouth and backward region…
Bernard Thuersam
December 22, 2016
Review Posts

The Conversation Club of Charleston

This essay was presented at the 2016 Abbeville Institute Summer School.   When I was young I used to read a lot of books about archaeology—the study of ancient lost worlds and civilizations. I never got to study archaeology, but I became an archivist, and I suppose my job is a little like field archaeology—except that I work indoors, in air-conditioned…
Karen Stokes
December 21, 2016
Blog

I Am So Old I Can Remember When….

—there was no television; and then when there was one station on two hours a day. —newspapers were locally owned, had lots of locally written literate material, and even had intelligent independent commentary on the editorial page. —a male American seen carrying an umbrella would have been ridiculed and probably beat up. —most people had not been up in an…
Clyde Wilson
December 20, 2016
Blog

Richard Taylor

General Richard Taylor was only son of President Zachary Taylor. His father and mother were natives of Virginia, and his grand father, also a Virginian, commanded a brigade of Virginia troops in the battle of Brandywine. The hereditary residence of the family was in Orange county, Virginia. President Taylor's eldest daughter married Lieutenant Jefferson Davis, the late President of the…
Dabney H. Maury
December 16, 2016
Blog

They Came From the East

 It is generally thought that when the earliest Homo sapiens arrived on the scene in Africa and Asia less than a hundred-thousand years ago, all of North and South America was devoid of human habitation.  Most in the scientific community also contend that it was no more than twenty to thirty-thousand years ago, as the glaciers from the last Ice Age…
John Marquardt
December 9, 2016
Review Posts

The Legacy of Francis Butler Simkins

A biographer defined Francis Butler Simkins as "one of the most interesting intellectual forces of his generation." As a scholar who questioned conventional thinking he "helped lay the foundation of the Civil Rights Movement. Yet, when these momentous events of the 1950s and 1960s challenged the traditional order in the American South, Simkins discovered much...that he believed should be conserved…
Grady McWhiney
November 8, 2016
Blog

The Oregon Question

But I oppose war, not simply on the patriotic ground of a citizen looking to the freedom and prosperity of his own country, but on still broader grounds, as a friend of improvement, civilization and progress. Viewed in reference to them, at no period has it ever been so desirable to preserve the general peace which now blesses the world.…
John C. Calhoun
November 3, 2016
Blog

The Other William C. Falkner

The date was Tuesday, November 5th . . . the year was 1889 . . . federal and local elections were being held in twenty states throughout America.  In addition to the elections in Virginia that day, the newly launched steamer “New York” was setting out on her trial run from Norfolk.  Further south, after winning a seat in the…
John Marquardt
November 1, 2016
Blog

Washington’s Rye

Every student of history knows at least a brief sketch of the Whiskey Rebellion of 1794, but most people don't realize that Alexander Hamilton's excise tax on distilled spirits hit George Washington in the wallet as well, albeit years after the rebellion. He owned the largest distillery in Northern Virginia from 1797-1799 and shipped hundreds of gallons of moonshine to Alexandria during the…
Brion McClanahan
September 23, 2016
Review Posts

John C. Calhoun: Anti-Imperialist

The mission of the Abbeville Institute, to redeem what is worthwhile in the Southern tradition, is an embattled one. The dominant powers in American discourse today have succeeded in confining the South to a dark little corner of story labeled “Slavery and Treason.” This is already governing the public sphere of the Civil War Sesquicentennial. Such an approach not only…
Clyde Wilson
September 22, 2016
Review Posts

James Jackson of Georgia: Unknown Patriot Founder

Published in honor of James Jackson's birthday, September 21. Delivered in Savannah, in February, 1806, by the Author of this work. IT is announced to us, that on the 19th day of the last month, departed this life, at the City of Washington, after a long and painful illness, Major General James Jackson, one of our Senators in the Congress…
Thomas U.P. Charlton
September 21, 2016
Review Posts

The Last of the Romans

This essay was originally published at The Imaginative Conservative and is published here in honor of Carroll's birthday, September 19. The last of the American signers of the Declaration of Independence to pass from this world, Charles Carroll of Carroll was also one of the most formally educated of the American founders. Living seventeen years in France and England, Carroll…
Bradley J. Birzer
September 19, 2016
Review Posts

Rethinking the War for the 21st Century

(13th Annual Gettysburg Banquet of the J.E.B. Stuart Camp, SCV, Philadelphia) ****How Should 21st Century Americans Think about the War for Southern Independence? **** We human beings are peculiar creatures, half angel and half animal, as someone has said. Alone among creatures we have a consciousness of ourselves, of our situation, and of our movement through time. We have language,…
Clyde Wilson
September 14, 2016
Blog

Decentralization For Humanity’s Sake

The Roman historian Titus Livius once called Rome “the greatest nation in the world.”  He wrote those words in a time of moral and political decline, and Livy was hoping by outlining the greatness of the once proud republic, the Roman people would arrest the decline and embrace the principles that had made Rome great.  Livy argued that without understanding…
Brion McClanahan
September 9, 2016
Blog

Call Me Simple with Strange Words for Strange Days

Call me simple... But I don’t understand: Why the government spends billions on welfare but people keep saying hunger is a big problem. Why the government spends billions on education and the population gets dumber and dumber. Why the government spends billions on “intelligence” and defense but could not prevent 9/11. Why pointless filthy language has taken over in popular…
Clyde Wilson
September 7, 2016
Review Posts

Choosing Southernness: Southern With an Italian Accent

Late in August 1965, a young boy not yet eight-years-old stood with his father on the field at Gettysburg near the spot where Pickett's men formed in the woods. The boy's father was not a learned man and had an uncertain grasp of the events that took place on that ground more than a century before. "Which side were we…
Mark G. Malvasi
September 6, 2016
Review Posts

The South as an Independent Nation

This article was originally published in Southern Partisan Magazine in 1997. "Being a Southerner is a spiritual condition, like being a Catholic or Jew." So wrote Richard Weaver in his essay "The South and the American Union" in The Lasting South (1957). The South's experience during the war for its independence, he added, only confirmed this separateness of spirit and…
William Cawthon
September 1, 2016
Review Posts

Reflections of a Ghost: An Agrarian View After Fifty Years

Of the twelve agrarians who wrote the symposium I'll Take My Stand, only three are alive: Robert Penn Warren, the poet and novelist, Lyle Lanier, a psychologist and former executive vice-president of the University of Illinois, and myself, a writer and reader of fiction. I don't presume to speak either for Warren or Lanier, and I don't know how to…
Andrew Nelson Lytle
August 23, 2016
Blog

Confederate Memorial Hall and Jack Daniels

In 1935 the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC) constructed Confederate Memorial Hall as a residence for girls at Nashville's Peabody College. Originally residents who were descendants of Confederate veterans and agreed to become teachers were granted free room and board. The school and dormitory were acquired by Vanderbilt University in 1979. Earlier this month university chancellor, Nicholas Zeppos, announced…
Philip Leigh
August 22, 2016
Review Posts

A Southern Political Economy vs. American State Capitalism

General Lee was a soldier and leader of men, not a politician. Although several of his decisions as soldier had an important political impact in American history, he seldom discussed such matters. An exception is his correspondence with the British historian Acton shortly after the war. Acton had spent a long career studying how constitutional liberty had gradually developed as…
Clyde Wilson
August 10, 2016
Blog

The Inside War

Editor's Note: This article was originally published at The Southern Literary Review and is an interview with author Robert J. Ernst by Allen Mendenhall covering Ernst's book, The Inside War. APM: Thanks for taking the time to sit down for this interview, Bob. Your novel The Inside War is about an Appalachian mountain family during the Civil War. How long…
Allen Mendenhall
August 5, 2016
Review Posts

American Culture: Massachusetts or Virginia

Delivered at the 2016 Abbeville Institute Summer School. A Frenchman has observed that the qualities of a culture may be identified by two characteristics--- its manners and its cuisine. If that is so, then we can safely say that the United States, except for the South, has no culture at all. Aside from the South the only American contributions to…
Clyde Wilson
August 3, 2016
Review Posts

The Free State of Jones: History or Hollywood?

Hollywood has struck again with another “Civil War” movie that, unsurprisingly as it may seem, does not do justice to the real Southland or the Confederacy.  The latest episode is an epic by director Gary Ross, “Free State of Jones,” starring Matthew McConaughey as the film’s hero, Newt Knight. “Free State of Jones” tells the story of a Knight-led rebellion…
Ryan Walters
July 12, 2016
Blog

The Louisiana “Hippeaux”

In America, there are a lot of places you can go that will make you feel like you’re in a foreign country.  Certain areas of Miami, Phoenix, or San Francisco immediately come to mind, and you might feel like you need a passport to go there.  However, I firmly believe that when I travel to some parts of Louisiana, I…
Tom Daniel
July 11, 2016
Review Posts

My Son, Get Wisdom, Get Understanding

Address delivered to the graduates of the South Carolina College, December 1821. Gentlemen, YOU are now about to quit the precincts of the College, and to enter upon the commerce of the world. Your education is supposed to be finished; in reality it is about to commence. The roads that lead to knowledge useful and ornamental, have been pointed out…
Thomas Cooper
June 17, 2016
Blog

Who Will Be Our Monuments Men?

The 2014 movie “Monuments Men” exposed a little known aspect of the horrors of Hitler’s Aryan supremacist totalitarian regime – the looting of priceless historical treasures and cultural purge of peoples he viewed as inferior. In the years leading up to American involvement in WWII, art historians around the world were in an uproar, concerned about systematic theft and destruction…
Lunelle McCallister
June 10, 2016
Blog

The South Carolina Doctrine

Sir, South Carolina has not gone one step further than Mr. Jefferson himself was disposed to go in relation to the present subject of our present complaints; not a step further than the statesmen from New England were disposed to go under similar circumstances; no further than the senator from Massachusetts himself once considered as within "the limits of a…
Robert Y. Hayne
June 7, 2016
Review Posts

Jefferson Davis: A Judicial Estimate

This piece is published in honor of Davis's birthday, June 3. With unaffected distrust of my ability to meet the demands of such a great hour as this, I rejoice to be again on the beautiful campus of my alma mater, and have the opportunity of bringing a message to the young men of my country. And as this commencement…
Blog

Betrayed by Yankees Perverting the Constitution

Originally published at Circa1865.com. The presidential messages of Jefferson Davis were filled with assertions of the South’s legal right to secede and form a more perfect union, and determine its own form of government to the letter of Jefferson’s Declaration of Independence. Not losing sight of this, even in early 1865, one Confederate congressman stated that “This is a war…
Bernard Thuersam
May 20, 2016
Blog

A Christian Defense of the South

It is said that the more things change, the more they stays the same. This has proven more than a mere cliche in the aftermath of the horrifying events in Charleston, SC last year. When racial animosity failed to materialize in the wake of the shootings at a predominantly African-American Church, Progressive political elements made the call to eliminate Southern…
Thomas Bryant
May 12, 2016
Blog

“Don’t Leave Me Here to Bleed to Death!”

The most recent issue of Hallowed Ground, a publication of the Civil War Trust, features an 1863 photograph of several Confederate soldiers laid out in shallow graves—casualties of the fighting at Gettysburg. This picture is like many of the grim photographs of the war dead, but what makes it unusual is that one of the soldiers has been identified. Two…
Karen Stokes
May 11, 2016
Review Posts

Remember Us

Delivered May 6, 2016 in Columbia, SC. Archibald MacLeish was a 20th century poet, author and three-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize. He wrote the following about the lost soldier: We were young. We have died. Remember us. We have done what we could but until It is finished it is not done. We have given our lives but until…
Herbert Chambers
May 10, 2016
Review Posts

Women of the Southern Confederacy

Editor's Note: A Mother's Day special dedicated to all Southern wives and mothers, this piece was originally published in 1877 in Bledsoe's The Southern Review. It is strange how we undervalue the historical interest of contemporaneous events, and how careless most persons are of preserving any record of the most stirring incidents that mark their own pathway through life. While…
Blog

Secession of the Heart

A dear friend of mine, a Harp like myself but born and raised in the Deep North, repeated to me for the umpteenth time one of the most persistent of all Southern stereotypes, the duplicitous Southerner. This type is all smiles and sweetness, until the proper time comes to lower the boom. As my friend put it, “No, we are…
John Devanny
May 6, 2016
Blog

Erasing Southern Culture and History, Step by Step

Throughout the entire South, our Confederate Southern heritage is under massive attack. This time, it's not just Yankee invaders who are doing this under a new Reconstruction; it's being reinforced as well by influential Southern liberals who hate the traditional South. There's a line that can't be crossed. Jesus gave us an injunction to love our enemies, but this doesn't…
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
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
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

“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
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

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
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
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
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

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
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
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
Review Posts

“We want not Gascons, but Southern gentlemen, honorable, high-toned men of strict integrity and straight hair.”

Gentlemen of the Historical Society of Mecklenburg (1876): Our president has appropriately introduced the series of historical lectures with the inquiry, why so few have attempted to preserve the record of the great events in the history of North Carolina, and to. embalm the memories of the illustrious actors therein. Perhaps, it may not be amiss in me to pursue…
Daniel Harvey Hill
December 15, 2015
Review Posts

The Same Old Stand?

This essay was published in Why the South Will Survive: Fifteen Southerners Look at Their Region a Half Century after I'll Take My Stand, edited by Clyde Wilson, 1981. When the Southern Agrarians took their stand, they did it stoutly, on two feet. Some emphasized the "Southern," others the "Agrarian," but fifty years ago it seemed that the two loyalties, to the South…
John Shelton Reed
December 1, 2015
Review Posts

Defending the Southern Tradition

History is a liberal art and one profits by studying the whole of it, including the lost causes. All of us arc under a mortal temptation to grant the accomplished fact more than we should. That the fall of Rome, the dissolution of medieval Catholicism, the overthrow of Napoleon, the destruction of the Old South were purposeful and just are…
Richard M. Weaver
November 26, 2015
Review Posts

A New Reconstruction: The Renewed Assault on Southern Heritage

This article was originally printed in the Nov/Dec 2015 issue of Confederate Veteran Magazine. In June 2015, after the depraved shootings in a Charleston, South Carolina, black church, a frenzied hue and cry went up and any number of accusations and attacks were made against historic Confederate symbols, in particular, the Confederate Battle Flag. Monuments, markers, flags, plaques, street and…
Boyd Cathey
November 19, 2015
Blog

The Birthday Surprise

Martha Jane Davis (Campbell) was born in Reed Creek, Henry County, Virginia in 1840. Her mother died when Little Mattie was two, and, her Turner grandparents (who lived nearby) took her to raise. A pretty child with auburn curls and gray eyes, she soon became the spoiled darling of her grandmother, who preferred being called "Grahma"(Grandmere) possibly because she had…
Joscelyn Dunlop
November 12, 2015
Clyde Wilson Library

Thomas Jefferson, Southern Man of Letters, Part II

Several generations after his lifetime Jefferson became best known, as he still is, of course, for these words "All men are created equal, and they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, among which are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness." Here is another important lesson in understanding history. The American Founders tend to be treated as…
Clyde Wilson
November 11, 2015
Blog

When I Was Little: A tale of life in Mississippi during the War

This story was originally published at Alabama Pioneers and comes from the book Alokoli : the Choctaw County. “Tell us about when you were little” was the oft repeated request of two lovely wee girls, my grandchildren and now comes the request that I put it down in writing. Viewed from their own childhood of peace and plenty mine seemed…
Clemmie Parker Wilcox
November 9, 2015
Review Posts

Virginia First

I. THE name First given to the territory occupied by the present United States was Virginia. It was bestowed upon the Country by Elizabeth, greatest of English queens. The United States of America are mere words of description. They are not a name. The rightful and historic name of this great Republic is "Virginia." We must get back to it,…
Lyon G. Tyler
November 6, 2015
Blog

Andrew Jackson: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

‘If only I can restore to our institutions their primitive simplicity and purity, can only succeed in banishing those extraneous corrupting influences which tend to fasten monopoly and aristocracy on the Constitution and to make the government an engine of oppression to the people instead of the agent of their will, I may then look back on the honors conferred…
James Rutledge Roesch
November 3, 2015
Review Posts

Thomas F. Bayard and the Defense of the South, 1866-1876

This article is reprinted from Edward Spencer, An Outline Public Life and Services Of Thomas F. Bayard, Senator of the United States from the State Of Delaware,  1869-1880. With Extractions from His Speeches and the Debates Of Congress (1880) and is published in honor of Bayard's birthday, October 29. The war was fought for the Union. Whatever may have been the hopes or desires of some of…
Edward Spencer
October 27, 2015
Blog

Calhoun and Yale

I can still recall one of my college economics professor's witticisms. When a student mentioned that the current year's test had the same questions as last year's, the professor replied: "Yes, but the answers have changed." My professor illustrated a valid point: theories of economic causation, like other theories, often change. A culture's political and social attitudes also change. But…
Gail Jarvis
October 26, 2015
Blog

The Queen City Humbled

In 1865, a writer for Harper’s New Monthly Magazine described Charleston, South Carolina, contrasting her condition before the war, and after four years of siege, blockade and bombardment: Not many years ago, Charleston sat like a queen upon the waters, her broad and beautiful bay covered with the sails of every nation, and her great export, cotton, affording employment to…
Karen Stokes
October 23, 2015
Clyde Wilson Library

Chronicles of the South

Introduction to Chronicles of the South: In Justice to So Fine a Country “The South” is a Problem. A Big Problem. This has been true at least since the 1790s when Mr. Jefferson and his friends rallied to put the kibosh—only temporarily, alas—on New England's attempt to reinterpret the new Constitution and set up a central government powerful enough to…
Clyde Wilson
October 21, 2015
Review Posts

Slavery in the Confederate Constitution

...... Although I have never Sought popularity by any animated Speeches or Inflammatory publications against the Slavery of the Blacks, my opinion against it has always been known and my practice has been so conformable to my sentiment that I have always employed freemen both as Domisticks and Labourers, and never in my Life did I own a Slave. The…
Vito Mussomeli
October 20, 2015
Blog

The Last Southern Democrat

“Daddy was a veteran, a southern democrat, They oughta get a rich man to vote like that.” Bob McDill, “Song of the South” The presidential candidacy of Jim Webb marks, perhaps, the last gasp of that nearly extinct species of politician populus austrinalus, the southern democrat. Webb, a native Missourian, has an impressive record of public service: a marine officer…
John Devanny
October 19, 2015
Blog

The Cemetery Tour Revisited

Well, another year has come and gone that the Auburn Heritage Association did not invite me back to portray secessionist William F. Samford in their annual cemetery lantern tour. This year’s tour concluded last weekend, and it has been at least a decade since that fateful night when innocent young progressives were assaulted at dusk by my fire breathing interpretation…
Tom Daniel
October 16, 2015
Blog

Hiding from History

When I moved to Wilmington, North Carolina as a retiree over twenty years ago, I brought much of the Yankee historical baggage—as written by the victors—of the War Between the States, or Lincoln’s War as many Southerners know it. I’ve always been interested in history, so naturally I wanted to understand more about the Southern views of the war. I…
R.E. Smith, Jr.
October 15, 2015
Clyde Wilson Library

Prosperity

Declining prosperity is now a settled fact of American life. Prosperity is not measured by the day’s average of stock speculation, or the profits of bankers, or the munificence of government subsidies and salaries, or the consumption of luxury goods, or even by the Gross Domestic Product. It is amazing how in a few short decades American “educators,” “experts,” “journalists,”…
Clyde Wilson
October 14, 2015
Blog

Believe It Or Not…

Criss-crossing the South, from Virginia and Maryland to Texas, and from Missouri and Tennessee to South Carolina and Florida, there are thirteen museums dedicated to the myriad oddities of life . . . Robert Ripley’s “Odditoriums.” Almost a century ago, as a reporter for the New York Globe, Ripley created what would soon become the world-famous media feature, “Believe It…
John Marquardt
October 9, 2015
Blog

The War to Prevent Southern Independence and Other New Tomes

Thanks for the “Amateurs” “Amateur” has come to mean “inferior” to most people today. But the term originally meant someone who was as good as a professional but did not take money for performance. Fortunately, Dixie has always had and still does have many able “amateur” historians. This is a good thing since most of the paid “professional” historians these…
Clyde Wilson
September 30, 2015
Blog

Civil Rights at the Casa Mañana

At the Battle of San Jacinto in April of 1836, the badly outnumbered Texas forces under the command of General Sam Houston avenged the historic defeat at the Alamo in San Antonio the month before by soundly crushing General Santa Anna’s vastly superior Mexican Army.  After that battle, Santa Anna was forced to sign the Treaty of Velasco which granted…
John Marquardt
September 28, 2015
Blog

Discovering Jackson

  Rebel Yell: The Violence, Passion, and Redemption of Stonewall Jackson (2014) by S.C. Gwynne. A braver man God never made. – Richmond Dispatch, 3-28-1862 (page 226) Gwynne’s biography of Stonewall Jackson is simply one of the best biographies I have ever read. Many biographies plod along a “cradle-to-grave” timeline that starts out something like “our hero’s father started out as…
Terry Hulsey
September 25, 2015
Review Posts

Robert B. Rhett: Liberty Protected by Law

“The one great principle, which produced our secession from the United States – was constitutional liberty – liberty protected by law. For this, we have fought; for this, our people have died. To preserve and cherish this sacred principle, constituting as it did, the very soul of independence itself, was the clear dictate of all honest – all wise statesmanship.”–…
James Rutledge Roesch
September 22, 2015
Blog

From the Saddle

John Rutledge of South Carolina is one of the most important men of the founding generation, but he has been lost to mainstream history. He is politically incorrect (most in the founding generation are) and his positions on the nature of federal power do not comport with modern nationalist interpretations of government. At 25, Rutledge was sent by South Carolina…
Brion McClanahan
September 17, 2015
Blog

Life In The Old Land Yet

There is life in the old land of Dixie yet. There seems to be no end of talent and knowledge coming forth in our defense against the South-hating jihadists who seem to dominate the American scene these days.   Valiant and wise people continue the daunting task of educating our fellow citizens about the truth of American history. The end of…
Clyde Wilson
September 16, 2015
Blog

Randolph of Roanoke and the War Party, 1806-2015

Few who encounter John Randolph of Roanoke in the pages of American history ever forget that inimitable, irrepressible figure. Randolph, a son of one of the “First Families” of Virginia, was the passionate, principled champion of the rights of the States and Virginia’s way of life, and the sworn enemy of nationalism, imperialism, mercantilism, abolitionism, and various other “isms” howling…
James Rutledge Roesch
September 11, 2015
Blog

Judah P. Benjamin: Able Statesman, Forgotten Patriot

If you showed the average American pictures of famous figures from Confederate States of America, there is a good chance many would recognize Jefferson Davis and Robert E. Lee. Pressed further, some may even identify Alexander Stephens. All were influential men, and important to the establishment and development of the Confederacy. However, none of them assisted the Confederate cause in…
Dave Benner
September 4, 2015
Blog

ISIS Punks and USA Vandals

This article was originally published at the Fleming Foundation. When the Islamic State blows up the Temple of Bel in Palmyra, the UNESCO (the cultural arm of the United Nations) condemns the act as a war crime.  UNESCO’s director-general declared that in destroying ancient monuments, IS was “seeking to deprive the Syrian people of its knowledge, its identity and history.”…
Thomas Fleming
September 3, 2015
Review Posts

The War for Southern Independence: My Myth or Yours?

In the antebellum era, Matthew Carey, Philadelphia publisher and journalist, was the most zealous and articulate advocate of a protective tariff to raise the price of imported goods so high that American manufacturers would be guaranteed a closed internal market that would provide them with growth and profits. He believed fervently that this was necessary to build a strong country.  …
Clyde Wilson
September 1, 2015
Blog

Japan and the South

When William Faulkner visited Japan in 1955 to attend a literary symposium in Nagano, he noted certain parallels between the aftermath of the Confederacy’s defeat in 1865 and that of Japan’s a century and a half later. In an address, “To the Youth of Japan,” Faulkner summed up these mutual experiences by saying; “My side, the South, lost that war,…
John Marquardt
August 27, 2015
Review Posts

John C. Calhoun and “State’s Rights”

  The following is an abridged version of a chapter which will appear in the forthcoming, From Founding Fathers to Fire-Eaters: The Constitutional Doctrine of States’ Rights in the Old South  “Union among ourselves is not only necessary for our safety, but for the preservation of the common liberties and institutions of the whole confederacy. We constitute the balance wheel…
James Rutledge Roesch
August 25, 2015
Blog

People Along the Way: Dan Smoot

Dan Smoot never considered himself to be a Southern conservative, though he was born and reared in Missouri and spent his early adult life in Texas.  He was one of the leading conservative voices in the 1960s and hosted a weekly television program titled "The Dan Smoot Report." There were once principled men who were willing to carry the conservative…
Brion McClanahan
August 20, 2015
Clyde Wilson Library

A Sacrifice for His People: The Imprisonment of Jefferson Davis

In 1866 Margaret Junkin Preston of Lexington, Virginia, a sister-in-law of Stonewall Jackson, wrote a poem she called “Regulus.” Regulus was a Roman hero who was tortured by the Carthaginians but never yielded his honour or his patriotism. Her verse, which did not mention Jefferson Davis by name, was a reflection on the imprisonment of President Davis—a tribute to Davis’s…
Clyde Wilson
August 19, 2015
Blog

Digging For Southern Roots

With all due apologies to Samuel Clemens, I like to think of myself as a Connecticut Confederate. Therefore, I was delighted to find recently that, in addition to being a self-made devotee of the “Lost Cause” and an ardent admirer of the South in general, I also have at least two actual ancestors who served gallantly in the Confederate Army…
John Marquardt
August 17, 2015
Blog

Was the Civil War About Slavery?

A new video entitled “Was the Civil War About Slavery?” from Prager University is currently making the rounds on the Internet. A caption claims that the video “settles the debate once and for all,” superseding over a century’s worth of scholarship by historians who have argued this matter. But does it really? The video is filled with misconceptions and myths…
Dave Benner
August 14, 2015
Review Posts

A Clear-Eyed Look at the Old South

Now that a third Reconstruction is very much underway in the South, it is more needful than ever to know and understand her history and her ways of living. Thankfully, Mrs. Elizabeth Allston Pringle, a South Carolina plantation owner and rice planter (1845-1921), has left us a valuable guidebook for doing such things in her written account of her family’s…
Walt Garlington
August 11, 2015
Blog

The South: The Genesis of American Independence

Originally published at www.circa1865.com In 1887 North Carolina’s Lieutenant-General Daniel H. Hill spoke of the American Republic and the men who founded, led and sustained it until a revolutionary movement ended its life after some eighty years. Shorn of the conservative South after 1861, the Northern government descended into political corruption, the Gilded Age, incessant warfare and moral depravity. The…
Bernard Thuersam
August 10, 2015
Blog

Another Look at the Confederate Battle Flag

Recently Mr. Donald Fraser wrote a column in my hometown newspaper, the Northeast Georgian, titled “Battle Flag Promotes Hate, Not Heritage.” He opened his article expressing a twinge of fear that he would probably not make many friends. I am glad, however, he is willing to say what he believes even at the expense of offending others, a luxury often…
Samuel C. Smith
August 7, 2015
Blog

Why Yankees Won’t (And Can’t) Leave the South Alone

This essay was first published in Southern Partisan in the Winter, 1985. Southerners rarely while away their leisure hours by contemplating Yankees, for there is no point in thinking of unpleasant things if one is not obliged to do so. Yet the practice does have value; to some extent, at least, we are defined by those attributes which set us…
Forrest McDonald
August 6, 2015
Clyde Wilson Library

A Jeffersonian Political Economy

Your other lecturers have pleasant and upbeat subjects to consider. I am stuck with economics, which is a notoriously dreary subject.   It is even more of a downer when we consider how far the U.S. is today from a Southern, Jeffersonian political economy which was once a powerful idea. Economics as practiced today is a utilitarian and materialistic study. It…
Clyde Wilson
July 29, 2015
Review Posts

Raphael Semmes and the Confederate Navy

On October 17, 1862 William E. Gladstone, British Chancellor of the Exchequer, delivered a speech at New Castle concerning the widening conflict in America. He said: “We may have our opinions about slavery; we may be for or against the South; but there is no doubt that Jefferson Davis and other leaders of the South have made an army. They…
Mark Baxter
July 28, 2015
Blog

Think Again, Jeff

The “conservative” Boston Globe columnist, Jeff Jacoby, thinks that the Confederate flag is “anti-American,” “an ugly symbol of oppression,” “the most poisonous ideologies in our national history,” “racial bigotry and victimization,” “racial hatred,” and “the right of white Americans to buy and sell black Americans.” The flag is also “the banner of slaughter” that “represents armed rebellion against the United…
Jack Kerwick
July 22, 2015
Blog

Our Noble Banner

The Confederate battle flag is protean. It is a powerful symbol that has entered the world’s consciousness. “Protean,” going back to the classical Proteus, is defined as “readily taking on varied shapes, forms, or meanings.”   And as “having a varied nature or ability to assume different forms.”   The flag’s power   is very real, but engenders a different feeling according to…
Clyde Wilson
July 20, 2015
Blog

The “Hawaiian Prophet” from South Carolina

South Carolina is not known for great surfing, but a native son named Alexander Hume Ford (1868-1945) is credited with the revival, preservation, and promotion of that sport. The scion of an old South Carolina family, he was the son of Georgetown County planter Frederick W. Ford (1817-1872) and Mary Mazyck Hume. His mother died at the time of his…
Karen Stokes
July 16, 2015
Blog

Afterthoughts on the Lowering of the Confederate Battle Flag in Columbia

This article was orgininally printed in the Unz Review and is reprinted here with permission from the author. Yesterday afternoon I heard a black civic leader in Columbia, South Carolina being interviewed about the just completed removal of the Confederate Battle Flag from the statehouse grounds. The lady from FOX who did the interview wanted to know about the satisfaction…
Paul Gottfried
July 15, 2015
Blog

Nothing is Sacred

Any sensible, reasonable person is deeply saddened by the atrocious and tragic murder of nine innocent, people while they attended a Bible study in Charleston, SC. Such tragedy is unthinkable, and I am joined by the overwhelming majority of people across the South in extending my most heartfelt condolences to the families of these folks, and to their community at…
Carl Jones
July 10, 2015
Blog

Whiskey

As a teenager, I always loved Sydney J. Harris’ syndicated newspaper column called “Things I Learned En Route to Looking Up Other Things.” I’m still fascinated with the concept of finding important information through the backdoor. The power of derailment on the internet is intoxicating, and I love getting side-tracked when I’m supposed to be being productive. I think most…
Tom Daniel
July 9, 2015
Clyde Wilson Library

What This Country Needs

In one of Henry James’s less unreadable novels, The Bostonians, the hero is Basil Ransom, an impoverished ex-Confederate from Mississippi who is trying to make his way professionally in the urban North. The author wants us to see the tough, realistic, earthy Ransom as a healthy contrast to the decayed idealism of the wealthy, reformist, insular, enervated society of Boston.…
Clyde Wilson
July 8, 2015
Blog

The Southern Cradle: A Review of The Other Irish by Karen F. McCarthy

The sub-title of Karen F. McCarthy’s highly readable The Other Irish: The Scots-Irish Rascals Who Made America sums up the book’s tone and scope: “The Scots-Irish Rascals Who Made America.” This is a general introduction to the Scots-Irish contribution to the history and culture of the United States, with special attention to their role in shaping the South. As the…
Mike C. Tuggle
July 6, 2015
Blog

Texas Reject

“Texans! The troops of other states have their reputations to gain, but the sons of the defenders of the Alamo have theirs to maintain. I am assured that you will be faithful to the trust.” – Jefferson Davis, 1861 This ruling was a foregone conclusion. As soon as Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg implicitly compared Confederates – the descendants of American…
Clyde Wilson Library

The Grand Old (Stupid) Party

The awful Obama is pushing terrible things on our country like socialised medicine, big spending, corporate bailouts, affirmative action, and amnesty for illegal aliens. He must be defeated so the Republicans can get in and push socialised medicine, big spending, corporate bailouts, affirmative action, and amnesty for illegal aliens. Obama is conducting two endless and pointless wars in Asia. He…
Clyde Wilson
July 1, 2015
Review Posts

South Carolina’s “Long Train of Abuses”

Just as we have always been told that America was founded by Pilgrims in search of religious freedom, we have also been told that Thomas Jefferson’s draft of the Declaration of Independence was based on British philosopher John Locke’s theories of “natural rights” and “social contract”. Jefferson was influenced by Enlightenment ideas and ideals but the indictments against the king…
Becky Calcutt
June 30, 2015
Blog

Mississippi Beaming

(1991) Oxford, Mississippi – I lost count of just how many times the University of Mississippi band played “Dixie” last Saturday while the Rebels were upsetting Georgia 17-13. The number had to be in the double figures, however. There were 31,000 at the game. Everybody who wasn’t from Georgia had a Confederate flag. Before the game began, there had been…
Lewis Grizzard
June 29, 2015
Blog

The Flag Controversy: We Did It To Ourselves

Who looks at Lee must think of Washington; In pain must think, and hide the thought, So deep with grievous meaning it is fraught. Herman Melville, "Lee in the Capitol," April 1866. “Be of good cheer: the flag is coming down all over, and it’s coming down because Rand Paul is right: it is inescapably a symbol of bondage and…
John Devanny
June 26, 2015
Blog

New From Southern Pens 3

The Report from Dogwood Mudhole Franklin Sanders is a well-known Southern leader and spokesman.   In 1995 Sanders, his wife, children, and grandchildren moved lock, stock, and barrel to Wayne County, Tennessee, determined to return to the land and learn to be farmers. Their adventures in this epic agrarian quest are being recorded by Sanders in a trilogy. The first volume…
Clyde Wilson
June 25, 2015
Clyde Wilson Library

America’s Red-Headed Stepchild

This piece was originally published on 3 July 2014 and is reprinted in light of current events. Are you puzzled and irritated by the viciousness and falsity of most of what is being published these days about the South and Southern history? The beginning of all wisdom on this subject is to know that in American public speech and so-called…
Clyde Wilson
June 24, 2015
Review Posts

Way Down in the (Southern State of) Missouri

“Way down in Missouri…Journey back to Dixieland in dreams again with me…” – Lyrics from the “Missouri Waltz” (The Official Missouri State Song) by James Royce Shannon. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6qtymMIAUKQ A cultural identity crisis can be an absolutely terrible thing that can often have ramifications that transcend the time in which it was spawned. Such a trend can lead to the cultural…
Travis Archie
June 23, 2015
Blog

The Literature Police and Gone With The Wind

Margaret Mitchell's Gone With The Wind was enthusiastically received when it was published but it has run afoul of the socio/political trends of recent years. Consequently, society's censors want the book banned. Throughout history there have been political and sanctimonious types who tried to restrict what the populace is permitted to read, but in our generation these types seem to…
Gail Jarvis
June 22, 2015
Blog

A Lady Champion of Free Trade

In her famous diary, Mary Chesnut called Mrs. Louisa S. McCord “the very cleverest woman” she knew. Of these two women from South Carolina, Chesnut is the most famous and widely read today, but Mrs. McCord—far more than clever—was a force to be reckoned with in her own time. In the antebellum era, she was the author of a number…
Karen Stokes
June 19, 2015
Blog

A Letter from North Carolina

As residents here in the Tar Heel State know, the boards of several of the state's public universities have in recent weeks engaged in a high-profile campaign to change the names of historic and iconic buildings and landmarks on various campuses. First, the board of trustees of East Carolina University in Greenville decided to remove the name of Governor Charles B. Aycock (1901-1905) from an historic residence hall on…
Boyd Cathey
June 18, 2015
Clyde Wilson Library

Goodbye to Gold and Glory

“The Father of Waters now flows unvexed to the sea,” Lincoln famously announced in July 1863. He was, according to a reporter, uncharacteristically “wearing a smile of supreme satisfaction” as he related the news of the surrender of Vicksburg. Like many popular sayings about the war of 1861–1865, Lincoln’s words rest on certain unexamined assumptions. Why had the flow of…
Clyde Wilson
June 16, 2015
Blog

“Hang the Usurpers”

On November 21, 1793, the Georgia House of Representatives passed a bill titled “An Act declaratory of certain parts of the retained sovereignty of the State of Georgia.” It’s unclear as to whether or not the Georgia Senate concurred. The bill was in response to the Chisholm v. Georgia , the case resulting in the ratification of the 11th Amendment.…
Marshall DeRosa
June 15, 2015
Review Posts

The Old and the New South

Delivered as the commencement address for South Carolina College, 1887. What theme is most fitting for me present to the young men of the South, at this celebration of the South Carolina Col­lege ? What shall one, whose course is nearly run, say to those whose career is hardly begun ? In my retrospect I deeply sym­pathize with you in…
Clyde Wilson Library

Confederate Connections

A friend of mine, a scholar of international reputation and a Tar Heel by birth, was visiting professor at a very prestigious Northern university a few years ago. In idle conversation with some colleagues, he happened to mention that his mother was an active member of the Daughters of the American Revolution and the United Daughters of the Confederacy. His…
Clyde Wilson
June 4, 2015
Review Posts

The Truth About Jefferson Davis

This piece originally appeared in Southern Partisan magazine in 1983. Rosemont Plantation, the childhood home of Jefferson Davis, is nes­tled in the gently rolling hills of southwest Mississippi. Carefully restored, the Davis family home is shaded by moss-hung oaks and catalpa trees, surrounded by lush vegetation and warmed by newly-greened memories of the past. It is the last place on…
Robert McHugh
June 3, 2015
Review Posts

Randolph of Roanoke

This piece was originally printed in Southern Partisan magazine in 1986. Some miles beyond Charlotte Court House, in Southside Virginia, one may find his way to Roanoke Plantation, which seems almost as re­mote as it was at the beginning of the nineteenth century. From the Revolution until 1810, scarcely a white man set foot on that planta­tion.- black overseers and…
Russell Kirk
June 2, 2015
Blog

The Plundering Generation

This piece was originally published in Southern Partisan magazine in 1987-88. A few years ago I was shuffling through accumulated litter in my garage attic when I came across some clippings dating from the 1960s. Among them were several letters to Life magazine comment­ing on an article by Bruce Carton. One reads as follows: Bruce Carton's article is interesting and…
Ludwell H. Johnson
May 29, 2015
Review Posts

Ludwell Johnson: Master Southern Historian

  Life and Work Why Read Ludwell Johnson? Both Ludwell Johnson’s style of work and choice of subject matter strongly recommend him to our consideration. As a working historian he is calm and measured, with just the degree of detachment that historical work ideally requires. As he puts it, “trying to identify cause and effect is, to me, the very…
Blog

“Scientist of the Seas”

Few Americans know of the great American scientist Matthew Fontaine Maury, and those that do probably do not know of his steadfast devotion to the Confederate States during the War for Southern Independence or his firm commitment to the South and her people. Maury was a native Virginian and his father had once been a teacher to Thomas Jefferson. Maury…
Brion McClanahan
May 22, 2015
Clyde Wilson Library

Antebellum Southerners in Europe

I want to look at Southerners going back to Europe long after the roots were planted, especially in the period before the second War of Independence began in 1861. The reason for looking at this is what it tells us about Southerners. One of the things it tells us is that we Southerners were a people. Our relationship to Europe…
Clyde Wilson
May 20, 2015
Review Posts

The Sesquicentennial of the War for Southern Independence as Symbolic of the Fallen State of the South

With the Sesquicentennial of the epic war of American history winding down, many may think this War no longer particularly relevant and we can move on to more current concerns. Such an attitude, which I dare say prevails among most Americans, Southerners included, ignores the watershed importance of the War known by any number of names, the “Civil War,” the…
William Cawthon
May 19, 2015
Blog

No History, No Culture, No Past

  The title of this article is how the radical Muslim organization, ISIS, characterizes its callous destruction of Jewish, Christian, and other pre-Islamic religious statuary; places of worship, libraries, and other ancient cultural artifacts. There are even videos of ISIS slaughtering groups of civilians. As justification for these massacres and devastation, ISIS claims that its concept of the Muslim faith…
Gail Jarvis
May 14, 2015
Clyde Wilson Library

The South and the West, Part 2

It seems my mission here is to bring to your attention unfamiliar and unfashionable truths about American history. Let me give you another one. The American West, the frontier, was NOT conquered and settled by a “Nation of Immigrants.” George Washington was already the fifth generation of his family in Virginia, as were most of his neighbours. There was a…
Clyde Wilson
May 13, 2015
Blog

New From Southern Pens, Part 2

Maryland Redeemed Everybody knows that our national anthem, “The Star-Spangled Banner,” was written by Francis Scott Key as he watched the British attack on Fort McHenry in Baltimore harbor during the War of 1812. Almost nobody knows the rest of the story. In 1861, Key’s grandson, Francis Key Howard, was locked up in Fort McHenry.   Howard wrote: “The flag which…
Clyde Wilson
May 8, 2015
Blog

Reconstruction’s Hungry Locusts

The wife of the president H.L. Mencken referred to as “Roosevelt the Second” provided much of the impetus for the communizing of the Democratic party in the mid-1930s, and could be readily found supporting and speaking before openly Marxist groups like the American Youth Congress, Communist National Student League, Young Communist League, and anti-Franco communists. In a news column she…
Bernard Thuersam
May 7, 2015
Clyde Wilson Library

The South and the West, Part 1

When our ever-wise leader set up a program on the American West, he obviously had in mind the geographic west of North America—the Great Plains, mountains, and Pacific coast beyond the Colorado, Red, Arkansas, and Missouri rivers. But when Americans emerged onto the Great Plains in the second third of the 19th century, they were already the inheritors of two…
Clyde Wilson
May 6, 2015
Review Posts

James Henley Thornwell and Southern Religion

The God-fearing, Bible-reading, hymn-singing Confederate army grew out of a Southern soil well cultivated during the long struggle of countless, if largely unsung, preachers to civilize a harsh and violent frontier. Personal piety and Bible-centered family circles bolstered the churches in a successful effort to shape the regional culture. The churches assumed responsibility for the education, especially moral, of the…
Eugene Genovese
May 5, 2015
Blog

Post Appomattox Fallacies Justifying Federal Tyranny

“We the people” of Dixie are in a unique position in today’s America. We are, though most Southerners do not realize it, a conquered and occupied people. A people of a once free nation—the Confederate States of America composed of former sovereign states. Southerners are a minority in a nation ruled by the secular humanist majority of the North.  This…
James Ronald Kennedy
April 23, 2015
Blog

On Abraham Lincoln and the Inversion of American History

Originally published by the Unz Review on 15 April 2015. Back in 1990 in Richmond, Virginia, as part of the Museum of the Confederacy's lecture series, the late Professor Ludwell Johnson, author and  professor of history at William and Mary College, presented a fascinating lecture  titled, “The Lincoln Puzzle: Searching for the Real Honest Abe.” Commenting on the assassination of…
Boyd Cathey
April 17, 2015
Blog

Tommy, We Hardly Knew Ye

Mr. Jefferson is quite passé these days, but ‘twas not always so. When I was a young lad, Mr. Jefferson was still firmly fixed among the America’s heroes, the great defender of the liberty of the states and the individual citizen, now not so much. Jefferson lost his luster among the members of the political Left over slavery, but perhaps…
John Devanny
April 16, 2015
Clyde Wilson Library

Thomas Jefferson, Conservative

In 1809 Thomas Jefferson yielded up the Presidency and crossed into Virginia. In the 17 active years remaining to him he never left it. The first volume of Malone's masterpiece, published in 1948, was Jefferson the Virginian. The sixth and last is The Sage of Monticello. Jefferson begins and ends with Virginia. Keep this fact in mind. It will save…
Clyde Wilson
April 15, 2015
Review Posts

Was Jefferson a “Scientific Racist”?

Originally published by the History News Network, 11 November 2014. “In one of my seminar discussions,” writes UVA professor Peter Onuf (now emeritus) in The Mind of Thomas Jefferson, “one young woman described suddenly feeling the she ‘did not belong here,’ that Jefferson was telling her that there was no place for her in his ‘academical village.’ ” He continues,…
M. Andrew Holowchak
April 14, 2015
Blog

The Antidote for Yankee Self-Righteous Delusional Disorder

The closing days of the sesquicentennial has offered media outlets the chance to reflect on the outcome of the War. The results were to be expected. Both “conservative” and “liberal” websites have lamented that the end of the War did not produce the sweeping political and social revolution that could have been, or in their minds should have been. Three…
Brion McClanahan
April 10, 2015
Clyde Wilson Library

What to Say About Dixie?

What to say in brief compass about the South?—a subject that is worthy of the complete works of a Homer, a Shakespeare, or a Faulkner. The South is a geographical/historical/cultural reality that has provided a crucial source of identity for millions of people for three centuries. Long before there was an entity known as "the United States of America." there…
Clyde Wilson
April 8, 2015
Blog

Disunion in America and the Southern Confederacy

The late Richard M. Weaver, “now widely recognized as one of the most original and perceptive interpreters of Southern culture and letters, one of the century’s leading rhetorical theorists, and a founder of American conservatism,” crafted many essays still relevant today. He wrote prolifically until his death in 1963. The quote above came from the introduction of a large volume…
R.E. Smith, Jr.
April 8, 2015
Review Posts

What Makes Southern Manners Peculiar?

Southerners live in the 18th century. This common charge is not altogether false, since the peculiar habits, customs, and meanings of words found often in the American South are found also in 18th century English authors. Such a word is manners. Most English-speaking people and some Southerners use the word now in the only senses current during the past two…
Ward S. Allen
April 7, 2015
Blog

John Tyler Son of Virginia

From the Confederate Veteran Magazine, Volume 4, 1916, pages 4-5. John Tyler, distinguished Virginian and tenth President of the United States, has received fitting, though long-deferred, honor from the country he served. Fifty-three years after his death the United States government has erected a handsome monument at his last resting place, in the shades of beautiful Hollywood Cemetery, at Richmond,…
Abbeville Institute
April 2, 2015
Clyde Wilson Library

A Southern Tradition: Restraining Bad Government

In talking about the Southern political tradition, it is most appropriate to point to the North Carolina Regulators and the Battle of Alamance Creek. This event was, in fact, only one of many such episodes in the colonial South--in the first 169 years of our history as Southerners before the first War of Independence. There was Bacon's Rebellion in Virginia…
Clyde Wilson
April 1, 2015
Review Posts

True American Whiggery: John Tyler and Abel P. Upshur

This piece is taken from Brion McClanahan and Clyde Wilson Forgotten Conservatives in American History. Two dates changed the course of American political history. On 13 September 1841, the Whigs expelled President John Tyler from their Party, outraged over his “betrayal” of what they considered true Whig political and economic principles. Shorty over two years later, on 28 February 1844,…
Brion McClanahan
March 31, 2015
Blog

“His Accidency:” The Indispensable John Tyler

In honor of John Tyler's birthday (March 29), I thought it proper to include a excerpt from my new book, Compact of the Republic: The League of States and the Constitution, detailing the actions of a President I believe followed the Constitution strictly and has been cast aside by history. Called “His Accidency” by his political adversaries to refer to…
Dave Benner
March 30, 2015
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Lest We Forget Southern History

This year, 2015, marks the sesquicentennial of the end of a four-year war between American Southern States and Northern States that supported an aggressive federal government Southerners could not abide. In addition to the appalling loss of lives; thousands of severely wounded men; and war against civilians with massive destruction and theft of their property, this holocaust was unnecessary and…
R.E. Smith, Jr.
March 27, 2015
Blog

The Eternal ‘Rebel Yell’

Recently, a friend sent me a link on the Smithsonian web site to a 1930 video clip with good sonics of some aged Confederate veterans demonstrating how the famous "Rebel Yell" had sounded some 65 years earlier. All those men were at least in their late 80s, most in their 90s.  But their remarkable spirit still showed through. History and time…
Boyd Cathey
March 26, 2015
Clyde Wilson Library

Hanging with the Snarks: An Academic Memoir

There seemed to be little interest among audience members in whether the ideas I had presented were true, only whether their application would bring about results they liked. I used to have a running argument with a colleague, a great scholar now gathered to his fathers, during late afternoon seminars catered by the good folks at Jack Daniels. The argument…
Clyde Wilson
March 25, 2015
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They Lived in the Age of Calhoun

If "history is the essence of innumerable biographies," as Thomas Carlyle wrote, then the historian has the advantage of witnessing past life from beginning to end.  This is a solemn task.  We see the spring and vigor of youth transform into the resolution and candor of manhood.  The winter of life comes quickly, often suddenly.  For some, the impending doom…
Brion McClanahan
March 20, 2015
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Calhoun on American Government, Politics, and War

"When it comes to be once understood that politics is a game; that those who are engaged in it but act a part; that they make this or that profession, not from honest conviction or intent to fulfill it, but as the means of deluding the people, and through that delusion to acquire power, when such professions are to be…
Clyde Wilson
March 19, 2015
Clyde Wilson Library

“A Senator of Rome when Rome Survived.”

This selection was originally printed in Brion McClanahan and Clyde Wilson, Forgotten Conservatives in American History (Pelican, 2012). Of the Great Triumvirate who dominated American public discourse from the War of 1812 till the mid-19th century, John C. Calhoun was the first to depart the scene, in 1850. Henry Clay and Daniel Webster lived a few more years. In a…
Clyde Wilson
March 18, 2015
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“The Last Roman”: John Caldwell Calhoun

Born in 1782 near Abbeville, South Carolina, Calhoun's educational opportunities were limited, albeit advanced by the occasional tutelage offered by his brother-in-law, Reverend Moses Waddel. After his parents' death and a period of self-education, Calhoun entered Yale College, studying under the arch-Federalist Dr. Timothy Dwight. He proceeded to study law for two years under Judge Tapping Reeve at the Litchfield…
H. Lee Cheek, Jr.
March 18, 2015
Review Posts

John C. Calhoun Vindicated

This essay was first printed in the Southern Partisan Magazine, Volume III, Number 1 (1983). INTRODUCTION One hundred and forty years ago, Senator Henry Clay proposed a constitutional amendment to limit the veto power of the president of the United States. Senator John C. Calhoun replied to Clay; and that speech in reply is the most succinct version of Calhoun's…
Russell Kirk
March 17, 2015
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John Mitchel: Irish Confederate

John Mitchel (1815-1875) was a fiery Irish nationalist who was convicted of treason by the British in 1848 and transported first to Bermuda and then to a penal colony in Australia, from which he escaped in 1853. After Mitchel and his family settled in America, he continued his nationalist activism by founding a radical Irish newspaper in New York, denouncing…
Karen Stokes
March 17, 2015