09 April 2015


In the spirit of the day, I offer the following.

150 years ago today, after the sacrifice of almost 750,000 American lives, our country came together for peace. What followed was the rise of the greatest nation on earth. From the crucible, rose the conquering. I had 3 great-great grandfathers who fought for the Confederacy. All 3 were wounded (one of them twice). 2 spent time in Yankee prisons. One died a couple of weeks before the war ended, alone in a Richmond hospital. Today, 150 years after Appomattox, I remember their sacrifice and the peace and great nation that they, their descendants and their new fellow citizens built. 

May God have mercy and may God Bless America.

Some readers may recall that I've been promising to post an audio recording of Douglas Southall Freeman's address at the dedication of the McLean House on 16 April 1950. I had full intention of doing that today. Unfortunately, I have not been able to complete that Youtube project. The audio is almost 45 minutes long and I want to include a montage of images to accompany the audio recording. I've started the process, but its taking me much longer than I thought it would. At present, I'm only about 10% of the way through the task. So I've moved the date to coincide with the anniversary of the address: April 16th, 65 years to the day. I think it will be worth the wait. You can get an idea of what's in store by revisiting this post. In the meantime, take a moment today and remember the sacrifice of every soldier that fought during the War Between the States.


ropelight said...

Thanks for the picture, seeing those two old soldiers in friendly and respectful embrace reminded me of my grandfather's WW-1 Infantry Division, the 29th.

The Let's Go Division was created in 1917 from infantry and artillery units from New Jersey, Maryland, and Virginia.

The Blue and Gray Division was named to honor the brave men who fought for the Union and those who fought for the Confederacy - and whose grandchildren would now honor the past at the same time they relied on each other in the fight against a common enemy.

The 29th joined the American Expeditionary Force in 1918 in time for the Meuse-Argonne Offensive, they fought for 21 days straight, suffered 30% casualties (170 officers and 5691 enlisted men killed or wounded), captured 2148 prisoners, and knocked out over 250 machine guns or artillery pieces.

Many were gassed in the trenches, my grandfather was one of them. He suffered respiratory problems for the rest of his life and I never heard him complain, not once.

At 12 years old he'd dress me up in what was left of his old Doughboy uniform (the helmet was still in good shape but the leather straps were fragile) and teach me the Manual of Arms. Those were happy times and good memories.

Richard G. Williams, Jr. said...

You're welcome RL - and thanks for the great story and comment.

Robert Moore said...

Looking forward to the Freeman project, Richard. Thanks for putting it together.