Saturday, August 18, 2007

And Still the Gray Wave Came Forward

History blogging from Gettysburg from Drifting through the Grift. Fantastic stuff, and pictures. Several pages of it, actually. The monuments really get me. The Pennsylvania at the spot where the Pennsylvanians had to defend their own land for the first time. Defending your own home soil is so emotional, the theme resounds through history with the terrible sound of thunder.

Most of that war was fought on Southern soil, and people still wonder why talking about this war can cause emotions to run high down South, even 140 some odd years later.


Leigh C. said...

God Almighty, you ARE a dyed-in-the-gray-wool Johnny Reb, aren't you? First sweet tea and now this...

Then again, in a past life, you were probably one of the N'Awlins ladies who made it a point to walk on the other side of the street or spit on the shoes of the conquering Yanks as they walked by.


Cousin Pat from Georgia said...

True story: I was once sitting in a hotel lobby and the movie Gettysburg was on the TV. It was the Pickett's charge scene. I was the only one standing there when it started, but by the time it finished, there were just under a dozen folks watching the TV with glistening eyes.

The biggest guy there, who had the most Southern of southern drawls, turns around and says "I hate to say this, but thank God we lost."

I gotta tell you, I'd like to think that my personal beliefs and politics would have caused me to roll north and wear blue. But the place of my birth and raw emotion throws all of that out the window. It would be politically correct for me to say that there is some confusion that I have to deal with, but there ain't a shred of doubt in my mind which side I would have been on, despite the terrible sins that cause has come to represent.

Luckily, tomorrow is not January 19th, 1861, so the answer to said question is purely an academic one. Luckily, several pressing questions that started the war were answered so loudly, so terribly and so finally, that even asking the questions is an excercise in the academic.

But looking at that field and those monuments, the view from Little Round Top, and to know what happened there, to think of Lo Armistead, after watching 8,000 men cut down in front of him, charging the line commanded by his best friend - with his hat held aloft on his sword.

All that, and the South would not be the South we know and love today if we had won. The whole of the world would be different. There is no way to know how, only speculation. Again, all academic.

But that doesn't take away the emotion a Southerner feels when looking at that copse of trees.