31 March 2007
30 March 2007
This photo is one I took 2 years ago at Natural Chimneys in northwest Augusta County, Virginia. This is an annual bluegrass gospel event held every August and just one of the many great festivals held throughout the South.
Stonewall Jackson's famous mapmaker, Jedediah Hotchkiss, lived and taught school at Mossy Creek at the Loch Willow Academy for boys, just a few miles from where this photo was taken. Though born in New York, Hotchkiss became one of Jackson's most trusted counsellors.
Hotchkiss died in 1899 and is buried in historic Thornrose Cemetery in Staunton, Virginia.
29 March 2007
The following is an excerpt regarding Jackson's funeral from Stonewall Jackson ~ The Black Man's Friend:
Mort Kunstler's latest painting, Going Home, depicts the funeral cortege being transferred to the Marshall at Lynchburg. This new painting will be unveiled at the Lynchburg event in May.
28 March 2007
The film is exceptional in professionalism and quality as well as stunning in its clarity as it is being done in high definition. Locations for premiers are currently being considered. Stay tuned . . .
(As a footnote, on this date in 1851, Virginia Military Institute's board of visitors selected Thomas J. Jackson as a professor at VMI by unanimous acclamation.)
27 March 2007
My lecture on Lee Chapel was well received as we noted that 2007 marks the 140th anniversary of the Chapel's construction. We also met some new friends, sold some books, and got our first sneak peek at the National Civil War Chaplain’s Museum - the only one of its kind in the United States. Take time to visit the link to the site. Their list of trustees and advisors is quite impressive, as are the goals they've set for the museum. Should you have items to donate or loan for this effort, please consider doing so. I was able to donate a couple of items related to John Jasper’s ministry to this new endeavor. The church Jasper founded, Sixth Mount Zion Baptist in
The Chaplain's Museum will be kicking off a national fund-raising effort (The Stonewall Procession) the weekend of May 11th - 13th with special guest, Mort Kunstler. Kunstler will be unveiling his latest work about the funeral procession of Stonewall Jackson from Lynchburg aboard the packet boat The Marshall. Civil War author and historian, Rod Gragg will be speaking as well. I've been asked by Kenny Rowlette to set up a book table as my book has a chapter about Jackson's funeral. We will be posting more information about this event and the Chaplain's museum in the near future.
This coming weekend, I will be speaking at the annual Natural Bridge Civil War Living History and encampment. There will be a few lectures on Saturday, an evening camp service, some new Confederate headstone dedications in the church cemetery, music around the campfires, and another service Sunday morning at Natural Bridge Baptist Church. Please contact me if you are in the area and would like more information.
26 March 2007
I think most see that silly, shallow opinion for what it is: an inability for so many moderns to identify with someone whose moral character is superior to their own and who have been thoroughly beguiled by popular culture and a morally and intellectually bankrupt educational system.
More later . . .
(Image is by John Paul Strain - Onward Christian Soldiers)
23 March 2007
22 March 2007
I also met many new friends, including Mr. Frank Grizzard, Jr. Frank is currently digitizing all of the Lee family letters and correspondence in a project for Washington & Lee University.
PRESTON is one of the most fascinating and most overlooked influences both in
He prepared for his rigorous education by attending a
(Image is from a painting of JTL Preston and hangs in the Preston Library at VMI)
21 March 2007
Col Alto: "This stately mansion was constructed in 1827, as a four-over-four classical revival structure for James McDowell, former Governor of Virginia from 1843-46, who bought the 328-acre property from his father, Colonel James McDowell. Governor McDowell did not live here during his term in office, however, he entertained many guests here before, during and after he served as Governor. His daughters often were hostesses to Thomas 'Stonewall' Jackson in the decade before the Civil War. Governor McDowell named the property 'Col Alto,' which is Italian for “on the high,” because at that time it was the only structure on the east side of Lexington and had unobstructed views of the city and the Blue Ridge Mountains."
20 March 2007
19 March 2007
General Lee's last meeting at this church and his last public act:
"It was chilly after dinner and rain began to fall steadily. Lee should have stayed home to protect himself against a cold, but he did not feel he should miss the vestry meeting, which was to consider the perennial question of a new church building and was also to decide what could be done to increase the scanty salary of General Pendleton. Lee insisted on going, and took no precaution against the weather other than to put on his old military cape. He walked through the rain and went directly to the church auditorium. There was no heat in the building and no smaller room into which the vestrymen could conveniently retire. They had to sit in the pews, cold and damp.
Chatting a few minutes with his associates, the General gave an historical turn to his conversation and related several anecdotes of Chief Justice Marshall and of his old friend Bishop Meade. Then, at 4 o'clock, he called the meeting to order. The discussion was close and tedious. Sitting with his cape about him, Lee presided, but, as usual, did not attempt to influence the deliberations. When all who would do so had expressed their views, Lee 'gave his own opinion, as was his wont, briefly and without argument.'After they had decided what should be done about the church building, the vestrymen began to subscribe a fund to raise Doctor Pendleton's salary. Lee was tired by this time, and despite the chill of the place, his face was flushed, but he waited in patience. All the vestrymen contributed; the clerk cast the total and announced how much was still needed to reach the desired sum. It was $55, considerably more than the part of one who already had contributed generously, but Lee said quietly, 'I will give that sum.'"
(R. E. Lee by Douglas Southall Freeman, Vol. IV, Chapter 27, page 487)
Yes, we in Virginia still focus much on Robert E. Lee - and for good reason. He remains one of our favorite sons.
17 March 2007
The Jamestown Children's Memorial
The north side of the monument will read:
In gratitude to the Lord our God for the mercy and kindness bestowed upon the American people and we the children of the twenty-first century, through His providential direction and care of our Jamestown forefathers.
Erected on the four hundredth anniversary of the Jamestown Settlement by the grateful children of America.
The south side of the monument will read:
Jamestown’s Legacy of Freedom:
Republican Representative Government
Bible-based Common Law
The west side of the monument will read:
“Wee shall by plantinge there inlarge the glory of the gospel, and from England plante sincere religion, and provide a safe and a sure place to receave people from all partes of the worlds that are forced to flee for the truthe of God’s worde.”
Richard Hakluyt, Visionary Founder of Jamestown
The east side of the monument will carry an inscription that reads:
Honor Your Father and Mother that Thy Days May Be Long Upon the Land which the Lord Thy God Giveth Thee.
15 March 2007
"Without our own well-educated, informative guides from Christian Legacy Tours (Sacramento), we would have left Jamestown with the impression that these settlers were nothing more than predecessors pressed from the capitalist-greed molds of the 21st century."
(Image is John Chapman's Baptism of Pocahontas at Jamestown, Virginia, completed in 1840. The painting hangs in the Rotunda of the United States Capitol.)
14 March 2007
"In 1865, Northern newspaper editors were accusing Lee of leading a 'training school for treason' - but by 1870, the same editors were praising Lee as a 'strong, positive, and moral influence' upon the young men of America."
I believe Lee still serves in that role. But today, there are many extremists again suggesting Lee was nothing more than a traitor. Perhaps they, too, will one day set aside emotion and what is faddish and examine Lee's character and accomplishments with intellectual honesty.
13 March 2007
I'm off to Lexington later this afternoon for some business, research, and a meeting tonight.
Pictured here, in front of Stonewall Jackson's statue, are "Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John" on the parade ground at Virginia Military Institute. These artillery pieces were so named by William Nelson Pendleton during the WBTS because "they spoke a powerful language." Pendleton would return to Lexington after the war as Rector of Grace Episcopal Church. There he and Robert E. Lee would worship and serve their God. Today, this church is known as "R. E. Lee Memorial Episcopal Church."
In front of the stone tablet that sits on the brick walk, is the final resting spot of Little Sorrel. This year marks the 10th anniversary of Little Sorrel's "funeral." More on that later.
10 March 2007
(Image is of a painting by artist Henry Kidd and is titled "Virginia's Sons.)
09 March 2007
(Available June 2007)
08 March 2007
"For America's 400th birthday, what should be a celebration of gratitude to the Lord is fast becoming an homage to revisionist historiography and political correctness."
Read article here.
And then this relevant survey is most enlightening.
07 March 2007
October 1, 1864--10 a. m.
I have ordered Gen. Wilson to report to Sherman. He is the best man for the position. I have devastated the Valley from Staunton down to Mount Crawford, and will continue. The destruction of mills, grain, forage, foundries, &c., is very great. The cavalry report to me that they have collected 3,000 head of cattle and sheep between Staunton and Mount Crawford. The difficulty of transporting this army through the mountain passes onto the railroad at Charlottesville is such that I regard at as impracticable, with my present means of transportation. The rebels have given up the Valley, excepting Waynesborough, which has been occupied by them since my cavalry was there. I think that the best policy will be to let the burning of the crops of the Valley be the end of this campaign, and let some of this army go somewhere else.
P. H. SHERIDAN,
Bibliographic Information : Letter Reproduced from The War of The Rebellion: Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies, Series 1, Volume 43, Serial No. 91, Pages 249, Broadfoot Publishing Company, Wilmington, NC, 1997.
05 March 2007
Having been born in 1958 in a hospital that was built upon ground that had served as the battle of
My interest in the WBTS has a real and, at times, emotional connection. Those of us who have this connection have heard many of these stories from our fathers and grandfathers who knew those veterans, who saw their wounds, touched their old uniforms, gazed upon their medals. Persons with no such attachment are studying the conflict from the outside and are sometimes puzzled at this emotional connection. Those who have a direct attachment to the bloodiest and most unfortunate episode in American history have much to add to the war's study.
“A man that would not love his father's grave is worse than a wild animal.” ~ Chief Joseph