Great American and bits and pieces

At the end days of the War Between the States, near Appomattox Va. in 1865 Lee made a couple of decisions that showed his devotion to the people of the US, both North and South.   The Confederate Army was on its last legs literally.   It couldn’t be supplied any longer with basic necessities such as food and shoes, medicine and other essentials.  The overwhelming size of the Union Army had at last taken its toll and there was no longer an avenue of escape.  The rail lines had been cut off by Union cavalry.  Jefferson Davis and some others in the Confederate government had proposed dispersing and engaging in what we today would call a guerilla war against the Union.

As his surrounded Army made its last efforts to retreat into western Va. and maintain its cohesion as a fighting force, his artillery forces wished to fight on.   They didn’t have any food or shoes but they still had powder and shot.  The artillery boys wanted to fire off every round they had left at the Union forces.   Lee forbade it.   The extra loss of life would not have changed the outcome and he wanted no more destruction that would not advance the cause of Southern independence. 

He also refused to engage in guerilla warfare.  He was an old school gentleman and was obviously willing to fight army to army but he was not willing to engage in ambush and terrorist activities.  He did not believe civilian populations should be subjected to the horrors of war and was determined not to  have any part in that.  He was revered by his troops and they would have followed him into the gates of Hell.  He rebuffed the proposals of Davis.   The guerilla campaign could have been effective and might even have caused the North to withdraw.  It was very weary of the war, like we always get weary of war.   Lee accepted defeat with dignity and resignation and with true devotion to the higher principles of man.  Read a biography of Lee if you haven’t.  He was a fascinating man with quite the epic life.  He fought in the Mexican-American War, fought the Commanches on the Plains of Texas and was offered the command of the Union Army in the spring of 1861 by Winfield Scott which he declined out of his love for Virginia.  He plantation was confiscated by the Union during the War.  He of course received nothing for it.  It is now Arlington Cemetery for our servicemen.  It is across the Potomac from Washington D. C.

Get yourself good French and Latin phrase books.   They will come in so handy.  The papers, magazines and books are filled with phrases from both those languages and you should have your own translations available.

The Gregorian calendar that we use today was first formulated in the late 16th century, but it took a couple of centuries for it to become universally accepted.  Here in the US our colony ancestors didn’t adopt it until the middle of the 18th century.   That is why the birth dates and deaths of many of our Founding Fathers have to be recalibrated by the historians.

Quo Vadis.


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Filed under Culture, Economics, Foreign Affairs, government, Politics

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