The Real Reasons There Was A War between
The CSA and the USA

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by James W. King, Commander Camp 141 and Lt. Col. Thomas M. Nelson
Sons of Confederate Veterans
PO Box 70577
Albany, Georgia 31708

    Historians have long debated the causes of the war and the Southern perspective differs greatly from the Northern perspective. Based upon the study of original documents of the War Between The States (Civil War) era and facts and information published by Confederate Veterans, Confederate Chaplains, Southern writers and Southern Historians before, during, and after the war, I present the facts, opinions, and conclusions stated in the following article.

   Technically the 10 causes listed are reasons for Southern secession. The only cause of the war was that the South was invaded and responded to Northern aggression.

   I respectfully disagree with those who claim that the War Between the States was fought over slavery or that the abolition of slavery in the Revolutionary Era or early Federal period would have prevented war. It is my opinion that war was inevitable between the North and South due to complex political and cultural differences. The famous Englishman Winston Churchill stated that the war between the North and South was one of the most unpreventable wars in history.  The Cause that the Confederate States of America fought for (1861-1865) was Southern Independence from the United States of America. Many parallels exist between the War for American Independence ( 1775-1783 ) and the War for Southern Independence.

   There were 10 political causes of the war (causes of Southern Secession), one of which was slavery, which was a scapegoat for all the differences that existed between the North and South. The Northern industrialists had wanted a war since about 1830 to get the South's resources ( land-cotton-coal-timber-minerals ) for pennies on the dollar. All wars are economic and are always between centralists and decentralists.  The North would have found an excuse to invade the South even if slavery had never existed.

    A war almost occurred during 1828-1832 over the tariff when South Carolina passed nullification laws. The U.S. congress had increased the tariff rate on imported products to 40% ( known as the tariff of abominations in Southern States ). This crisis had nothing to do with slavery. If slavery had never existed --period--or had been eliminated at the time the Declaration of Independence was written in 1776 or anytime prior to 1860 it is my opinion that there would still have been a war sooner or later.

   On a human level there were 4 causes of the war--New England Greed--New England Fanatics--New England Zealots--and New England Hypocrites.  During the "So Called Reconstruction" ( 1865-1877 ) the New England Industrialists got what they had really wanted for 40 years--THE SOUTH'S RESOURCES FOR PENNIES ON THE DOLLAR.  It was a political coalition between the New England economic interests and the New England fanatics and zealots that caused Southern secession to be necessary for economic survival and safety of the population.

1. TARIFF--Prior to the war about 75% of the money to operate the Federal Government was derived from the Southern States via an unfair sectional tariff on imported goods and 50% of the total 75% was from just 4 Southern states--Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia. Only 10%-20% of this tax money was being returned to the South. The Southern states were being treated as an agricultural colony of the North and bled dry.  John Randolph of Virginia's remarks in opposition to the tariff of 1820 demonstrates that fact.  The North claimed that they fought the war to preserve the Union but the New England Industrialists who were in control of the North were actually supporting preservation of the Union to maintain and increase revenue from the tariff. The industrialists wanted the South to pay for the industrialization of America at no expense to themselves. Revenue bills introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives prior to the War Between the States were biased, unfair and inflammatory to the South. Abraham Lincoln had promised the Northern industrialists that he would increase the tariff rate if he was elected president of the United States. Lincoln increased the rate to a level that exceeded even the "Tariff of Abominations" 40% rate that had so infuriated the South during the 1828-1832 era ( between 50 and 51% on iron goods). The election of a president that was Anti-Southern on all issues and politically associated with the New England industrialists, fanatics, and zealots brought about the Southern secession movement.

2. CENTRALIZATION VERSUS STATES RIGHTS---The United States of America was founded as a Constitutional Federal Republic in 1789 composed of a Limited Federal Government and Sovereign States.  The North wanted to and did alter the form of Government this nation was founded upon.  The Confederate States of America fought to preserve Constitutional Limited Federal Government as established by America’s founding fathers who were primarily Southern Gentlemen from Virginia.  Thus Confederate soldiers were fighting for rights that had been paid for in blood by their forefathers upon the battlefields of the American Revolution.  Abraham Lincoln had a blatant disregard for The Constitution of the United States of America.  His 'War of aggression Against the South' changed America from a Constitutional Federal Republic to a Democracy ( with Socialist leanings ) and broke the original Constitution.
The infamous Socialist Karl Marx sent Lincoln a letter of congratulations after his reelection in 1864.
A considerable number of European Socialists came to America and fought for the Union (North).

3.  CHRISTIANITY VERSUS SECULAR HUMANISM--The South believed in basic Christianity as presented in the Holy Bible. The North had many Secular Humanists ( atheists, transcendentalists and non-Christians ).  Southerners were afraid of what kind of country America might become if the North had its way.  Secular Humanism is the belief that there is no God and that man, science and government can solve all problems. This philosophy advocates human rather than religious values. Reference : Frank Conner’s book "The South Under Siege 1830-2000."

4. CULTURAL DIFFERENCES--Southerners and Northerners were of different Genetic Lineages.  Southerners were primarily of Western English (original Britons), Scottish, and Irish linage (Celtic) whereas Northerners tended to be of Anglo-Saxon and Danish (Viking) extraction. The two  cultures had been at war and at odds for over 1000 years before they arrived in America. Our ancient ancestors in Western England under King Arthur humbled the Saxon princes at the battle of Baden Hill ( circa 497 AD --516 AD ). The cultural differences that contributed to the War Between the States (1861-1865 ) had existed for 1500 years or more.

5.  CONTROL OF WESTERN TERRITORIES-- The North wanted to control Western States and Territories such as Kansas and Nebraska.  New England formed Immigrant Aid Societies and sent settlers to these areas that were politically attached to the North.  They passed  laws against slavery that Southerners considered punitive.  These political actions told Southerners they were not welcome in the new states and territories.  It was all about control--slavery was a scapegoat.

6. NORTHERN INDUSTRIALISTS WANTED THE SOUTH'S RESOURCES.  The Northern Industrialists wanted a war to use as an excuse to get the South's resources for pennies on the dollar.  They began a campaign about 1830 that would influence the common people of the North and create enmity that would allow them to go to war against the South.  These Northern Industrialists brought up a morality claim against the South alleging the evils of slavery.  The Northern Hypocrites conveniently neglected to publicize the fact that 5 New England States ( Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and New York ) were primarily responsible for the importation of most of the slaves from Africa to America. These states had both private and state owned fleets of ships.

7. SLANDER OF THE SOUTH BY NORTHERN NEWSPAPERS.  This political cause ties in to the above listed efforts by New England Industrialists. Beginning about 1830 the Northern Newspapers began to slander the South. The Industrialists used this tool to indoctrinate the common people of the North. They used slavery as a scapegoat and brought the morality claim up to a feverish pitch. Southerners became tired of reading in the Northern Newspapers about what bad and evil people they were just because their neighbor down the road had a few slaves. This propaganda campaign created hostility between the ordinary citizens of the two regions and created the animosity necessary for war. The Northern Industrialists worked poor whites in the factories of the North under terrible conditions for 18 hours a day ( including children ). When the workers became old and infirm they were fired. It is a historical fact that during this era there were thousands of old people living homeless on the streets in the cities of the North. In the South a slave was cared for from birth to death. Also the diet and living conditions of Southern slaves was superior to that of most white Northern factory workers. Southerners deeply resented this New England hypocrisy and slander.

8.  NEW ENGLANDERS ATTEMPTED TO INSTIGATE MASSIVE SLAVE REBELLIONS IN THE SOUTH.  Abolitionists were a small but vocal and militant group in New England who demanded instant abolition of slavery in the South.  These fanatics and zealots were calling for massive slave uprisings that would result in the murder of Southern men, women and children. Southerners were aware that such an uprising had occurred in Santa Domingo in the 1790 era and that the French (white) population had been massacred. The abolitionists published a terrorist manifesto and tried to smuggle 100,000 copies into the South showing slaves how to murder their masters at night. Then when John Brown raided Harpers Ferry,Virginia in 1859 the political situation became inflammatory. Prior to this event there had been more abolition societies in the South than in the North. Lincoln and most of the Republican Party ( 64 members of congress ) had adopted a political platform in support of terrorist acts against the South. Some (allegedly including Lincoln) had contributed monetarily as supporters of John Browns terrorist activities. Again, slavery was used as a scapegoat for all differences that existed between the North and South.

 9.. SLAVERY.  Indirectly, slavery was a cause of the war. Most Southerners did not own slaves and would not have fought for the protection of slavery.
  However, they believed that the North had no Constitutional right to free slaves held by citizens of Sovereign Southern States.  Prior to the war there were five times as many abolition societies in the South as in the North.
  Virtually all educated Southerners were in favor of gradual emancipation of slaves. Gradual emancipation would have allowed the economy and labor system of the South to gradually adjust to a free paid labor system without economic collapse. Furthermore, since the New England States were responsible for the development of slavery in America, Southerners saw the 'morality' claims by the North as blatant hypocrisy. The first state to legalize slavery had been Massachusetts in 1641 and this law was directed primarily at Indians. In colonial times the economic infrastructure of the port cities of the North was dependent upon the slave trade. The first slave ship in America, "THE DESIRE", was fitted out in Marblehead, Massachusetts. 
  Further proof that Southerners were not fighting to preserve slavery is found in the diary of an officer in the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia. He stated that "he had never met a man in the Army of Northern Virginia that claimed he was fighting to preserve slavery". If the war had been over slavery, the composition of the politicians, officers, enlisted men, and even African Americans would have been different.
  Confederate General Robert E. Lee had freed his slaves (they had not been purchased by him, they were inherited by his wife's estate) prior to 1863 whereas Union General Grant's wife Julia did not free her slaves until after the war when forced to do so by the 13th amendment to the constitution. Grant even stated that if the abolitionists claimed he was fighting to free slaves that he would offer his services to the South.
  Mildred Lewis Rutherford ( 1852-1928 ) was for many years the historian for the United Daughters Of The Confederacy (UDC).  In her book Truths Of History she stated that there were more slaveholders in the Union Army ( 315,000 ) than the Confederate Army ( 200,000 ). Statistics and estimates also show that about 300,000 blacks supported the Confederacy versus about 200,000 for the Union.  Clearly the war would have been fought along different lines if it had been fought over slavery.
  The famous English author Charles Dickens stated " the Northern onslaught upon Southern slavery is a specious piece of humbug designed to mask their desire for the economic control of the Southern states."

10,  NORTHERN AGGRESSION AGAINST SOUTHERN STATES,  Proof that Abraham Lincoln wanted war may be found in the manner he handled the Fort Sumter incident. Original correspondence between Lincoln and Naval Captain G.V.Fox shows proof that Lincoln acted with deceit and willfully provoked South Carolina into firing on the fort ( The Union was using Fort Sumter as A TARIFF COLLECTION FACILITY ).  It was politically important that the South be provoked into firing the first shot so that Lincoln could claim the Confederacy 'started' the war.  Additional proof that Lincoln wanted war is the fact that Lincoln refused to meet with a Confederate peace delegation.  They remained in Washington for 30 days and returned to Richmond only after it became apparent that Lincoln wanted war and he refused to meet and discuss a peace agreement.  After setting up the Fort Sumter incident for the purpose of starting a war, Lincoln called for 75,000 troops to put down what he called a 'rebellion'.  He intended to march Union troops across Virginia and North Carolina to attack South Carolina.  Virginia and North Carolina were not going to allow such an unconstitutional and criminal act of aggression against a sovereign sister Southern State.  Lincoln's act of aggression caused the secession of the upper Southern States.

On April 17th 1861, Governor Letcher of Virginia sent this message to Washington DC:  "I have only to say that the militia of Virginia will not be furnished to the powers of Washington for any such use or purpose as they have in view. Your object is to subjugate the Southern states and the requisition made upon me for such a object -- an object in my judgment not within the purview of the constitution or the act of 1795, will not be complied with. You have chosen to inaugurate civil war; having done so we will meet you in a spirit as determined as the administration has exhibited toward the South."

 The WAR BETWEEN THE STATES 1861-1865 occurred due to many complex causes and factors as enumerated above. Those who make claims that "the war was over slavery" or that if slavery had been abolished in 1776 when the Declaration of Independence was signed or in 1789 when The Constitution of the United States of America was signed, that war would not have occurred between North and South are being very simplistic in their views and opinions.

The following conversation between English ship Captain Hillyar and Capt. Raphael Semmes of the Confederate Ship CSS Alabama occurred during the war on August 5th, 1861.  It is a summary from a well-educated Southerner who is stating his reasons for fighting.
Captain Hillyar expressed surprised at Captain Semme's contention that the people of the South were "defending ourselves against robbers with knives at our throats", and asked for further clarification as to how this was so, the exchange below occurred. I especially was impressed with Semmes' assessment of yankee motives - the creation of "Empire"! Semmes: "Simply that the machinery of the Federal Government, under which we have lived, and which was designed for the common benefit, has been made the means of despoiling the South, to enrich the North", and I explained to him the workings of the iniquitous tariffs, under the operation of which the South had, in effect, been reduced to a dependent colonial condition, almost as abject as that of the Roman provinces, under their proconsuls; the only difference being, that smooth-faced hypocrisy had been added to robbery, inasmuch as we had been plundered under the forms of law" Captain Hillyar: "All this is new to me", replied the captain. "I thought
that your war had arisen out of the slavery question".
Semmes: "That is the common mistake of foreigners. The enemy has taken pains to impress foreign nations with this false view of the case. With the exception of a few honest zealots, the canting hypocritical Yankee cares as little for our slaves as he does for our draught animals. The war which he has been making upon slavery for the last 40 years is only an interlude, or by-play, to help on the main action of the drama, which is Empire; and it is a curious coincidence that it was commenced about the time the North began to rob the South by means of its tariffs. When a burglar designs to enter a dwelling for the purpose of robbery, he provides himself with the necessary implements. The slavery question was one of the implements employed to help on the robbery of the South. It strengthened the Northern party, and enabled them to get their tariffs through Congress; and when at length, the South, driven to the wall, turned, as even the crushed worm will turn, it was cunningly perceived by the Northern men that 'No slavery' would be a popular war-cry, and hence, they used it.  It is true that we are defending our slave property, but we are defending it no more than any other species of our property - it is all endangered, under a general system of robbery. We are in fact, fighting for independence."

 The Union victory in 1865 destroyed the right of secession in America, which had been so cherished by America's founding fathers as the principle of their revolution. British historian and political philosopher Lord Acton, one of the most intellectual figures in Victorian England, understood the deeper meaning of Southern defeat. In a letter to former Confederate General Robert E. Lee dated November 4,1866, Lord Acton wrote:  "I saw in States Rights the only available check upon the absolutism of the sovereign will, and secession filled me with hope, not as the destruction but as the redemption of Democracy. I deemed you were fighting the battles of our liberty, our progress, and our civilization and I mourn for that which was lost at Richmond more deeply than I rejoice over that which was saved at Waterloo (defeat of Napoleon). As Illinois Governor Richard Yates stated in a message to his state assembly on January 2,1865, the war had "tended, more than any other event in the history of the country, to militate against the Jeffersonian Ideal ( Thomas Jefferson ) that the best government is that which governs least.

Years after the war former Confederate president Jefferson Davis stated " I Am saddened to Hear Southerners Apologize For Fighting To Preserve Our Inheritance".

Some years later former U.S. president Theodore Roosevelt stated " Those Who Will Not Fight For The Graves Of Their Ancestors Are Beyond Redemption".


The Emancipation Proclamation did not free any slaves!


It is not widely known that the Southern state of Virginia was the very first political body in the entire world to enact legislation to end the slave trade. On 5 October 1778, the General Assembly passed "An act for preventing the further importation of slaves," in which "any slave brought into the state contrary to the law would be then and forevermore free." In keeping with such opposition to the wickedness of the slave trade, the Constitution of the Confederate States of 1861 permanently abolished the practice in Article 1, Section 9, Clause 1. Confederate President Jefferson Davis made clear his plans for the infant country when he stated, "The slave must be made fit for his freedom by education and discipline and thus be made unfit for slavery."

It was Davis' prediction that slavery "will eventually be lost"; it had outlived its usefulness and would inevitably die a natural death. Although there were indeed some who believed that the natural condition of the Black man was servitude, the prevailing opinion in the South was that of gradual emancipation. Some Southern leaders, such as General Robert Edward Lee, were wholly opposed to African slavery.

Let the Reader contrast such sentiments with the actions of the invading Northern forces. In a letter to General Grant, General John A. Logan reported that his men were "capturing Negroes, with or with out their consent.... They are being conscripted." In 1864, General Innis N. Palmer wrote to General Butler, "The Negroes will not go voluntarily, so I am obliged to force them." And at the same time Black men were being taken against their will into "service" to the United States, Yankee soldiers were "committing rapes on the Negroes" and were "in the Negro huts for weeks, debauching the females." A war to free the slaves? Only a deluded mind would believe such nonsense.

What then would inspire a vast majority of non-slaveholding Confederates, many of whom were as young as fourteen years of age, to shoulder their muskets and charge with resolve into the very face of death? What gave these men the mental fortitude and courage to stand firm in their defiance of the mightiest war machine the world had seen up to that time? I firmly believe that the rag-tag "Rebels" were motivated by their love for their homeland, their families, and for their Christian roots. These men deserve to be honored for withstanding tremendous odds in an attempt to secure for future generations of Southerners the eternal "blessings of liberty." In the words of one Confederate soldier: I was a soldier in Virginia in the campaigns of Lee and Jackson, and I declare I never met a Southern soldier who had drawn his sword to perpetuate slavery.... What he had chiefly at heart was the preservation of the supreme and sacred right of self-government.

Even the editors of the London Times acknowledged this to be true when they stated on 7 November 1861: The contest is really for empire on the side of the North and for independence on that of the South....

This "supreme and sacred right of self-government" is not based on the color of a man's skin, but on the readiness of his soul to accept such a lofty responsibility. As such, self-government most assuredly would have been eventually enjoyed by the slaves of Dixie had the fanaticism and hatred of nineteenth-century Abolitionists not prevented her from implementing measures for a gradual emancipation which would honor both the property rights of Southern planters as well as humanly prepare the slaves for the duties which accompany freedom. Such a task did not require the shed blood of over half a million men and the anguish of countless grieving widows and mothers. Even the most noble ends do not justify violent and revolutionary means.


Fort Sumter facts

Charleston, South Carolina - On the night of December 26, 1860, Major Robert Anderson decided to move the Fort Moultrie garrison to Fort Sumter, in his words "To prevent the effusion of blood."  A merchant ship, the Star of the West, was sent with supplies but was turned back by South Carolina artillerists on 9 January 1861.  This event is still considered by many scholars as the first shot of the Civil War.

(Transcribed from the Official Records of the War, Series I, Chapter I)

Fort Sumter, S.C. December 26, 1860 - 8 p. m.
(Received A. G. O., December 29.)

Colonel: I have the honor to report that I have just completed, by the blessing of God, the removal of this fort of all of my garrison, except the surgeon, four non-commissioned officers, and seven men. We have one year's supply of hospital stores and about four months' supply of provisions for my command. I left orders to have all the guns at Fort Moultrie spiked, and the carriages of the 32-pounders, which are old, destroyed. I have sent orders to Captain Foster, who remains at Fort Moultrie, to destroy all the ammunition which he cannot send over. The step which I have taken was, in my opinion, necessary to prevent the effusion of blood.

Respectfully, your obedient servant,

Major, First Artillery, Commanding.

13 April 1861 -- Ft Sumter in South Carolina fell to the Confederate States of America after 33 hours of bombardment.

According to United States Army Captain Montgomery C. Meigs, "This is the beginning of the war which every statesman and soldier has foreseen since the passage of the South Carolina Ordinance of Secession."

Preserved in print by the United States Government is Captain Meig's testimony.  He very candidly locates the responsibility of the bloodshed to come with the office of the President, and not with the Confederates!  He states that "the violation of the armistice was an Executive act, unknown at the time to any but those engaged therein, including General Scott, the Secretary of State, and the President."

When Judge Campbell realized he had been used by the Lincoln Administration to lull the Confederate Commissioners into a false sense of security, he wrote to William Seward, Lincoln's Secretary of State:

"I think no candid man will read over what I have written, and consider for a moment what is going on at Sumter, but will agree that the equivocating conduct of the Administration, as measured and interpreted in connection with these promises, is the proximate cause of the great calamity."

During the months prior to April 13th when there were many public and private assurances of peace being made, Lincoln was making plans to reinforce Ft Sumter.  Just 3 months before taking the oath of office, he sent a message to General Winfield Scott: "Please present my respects to the general, and tell him confidentially, I shall be obliged to him to be as well prepared as he can to either hold or retake the forts, as the case may require, at and after the inauguration."  When Major Anderson mysteriously left his position at Ft. Moultrie in Dec. 1860 and moved his forces to Ft. Sumter, South Carolinians were resentful.  President Buchanan expressed alarm because his Secretary of War had given no such order.

By April 1861 the stage was set for a fight.  With the pretext of trying to get food and provisions to the "starving men" in Ft Sumter, Lincoln sent out a "Relief Squadron".  It consisted of 8 warships, carrying 26 guns, and 1,400 men.

When the Confederate Government in Montgomery learned of Lincoln's treachery, it authorized General Beauregard to demand the surrender of the fort.
"The aggressor in war is not the first who uses force, but the first who renders force necessary." (Henry Hallam)

Information taken from:
Official Records, Armies Series I, Volume I America's Caesar, The Decline and Fall of Republican Government in the United States of America Greg L. Durand 2001       (see )

Major Anderson Invades South Carolina:

“The following excerpt is from an article by Prof. Robert L. Preston of Leesburg, Va., which appeared in the New York Times of May 9, [1926] on the “Title to Governor’s Island---Rights of the Federal Government and the State of New York as Set Forth in the Old Statutes,” is a most remarkable and interesting statement about the legal status of Fort Sumter in 1861: “South Carolina in 1805 (Statutes at Large, Volume V, p. 501) provided as follows in regard to the cessions in Charleston Harbor:

“That, if the United States shall not, within three years from the passing of this act, and notification thereof by the governor of this State to the Executive of the United States, repair the fortifications now existing thereon, or build such other forts or fortifications as may be deemed most expedient by the Executive of the United States on the same,  and keep a garrison or garrisons therein, in such case this grant or cession shall be void and of no effect.”  

It may be on interest to state that Fort Sumter not only was not completed within the three-year limit stipulated in the contract, but was not completed in Dec. 1860 when Major Anderson transferred his garrison from Fort Moultrie. Moreover, it had never been garrisoned until he occupied it. So that, having neither been completed not garrisoned according to the contract, either within the three years specified time, or, for that matter, by 1861,  Major Anderson occupied a piece of property that the United States had not the vestige of a right to occupy, and which was under the ownership, jurisdiction, and sovereignty of the State of South Carolina exclusively.  In other words, he invaded the State of South Carolina with his troops---unwittingly, it is true, and on orders, but in fact, at any rate.  Adverse possession even could not lie here in behalf of the United States, since the United States had not garrisoned it.”  

(Fort Sumter in 1861, Confederate Veteran, September, 1926, page 325)

Black Slave Owners

Please ask the NAACP members if the name that they are known by is taken from the black slave owners. I am sure that they would be known by another name if they were still back where they came from and where the chief's sold them to the slave traders. Selling slaves was a "cottage industry." If anyone will do the research they will find that in SC in 1840 William Ellison started "slave breeding" where he sold slaves for $400.00.

In the state of LA in 1860 there were at least six Negroes in Louisiana who owned 65 or more slaves, widow C. Richard and her son P. C. Richard owned 152 slaves. Antoine Dubuclet owned over 100 slaves. In Charleston, SC 125 free negroes owned slaves, six of them owned ten or more. In fact if anyone will take the time to check they will find that the blacks owned as many slaves if not more than the the whites. In New Orleans. Justus Angel, Mistress L. Horry, of Colleton, SC, District owned 84 slaves in 1830. The  fact are in 1830 one fourth of the free Negroes slave masters in SC owned 10 or more slaves.

Of the 224 years that slavery was LEGAL in this country both north and south only 4 years was under the St. Andrews banner. How about jumping on the stars and stripes 220 years slavery was legal under that banner. Put in to your computer these words "black slave owners" your eyes will be opened to the truth.

R.W. Moore, Publisher
The Truth Newspaper, Inc.


The First Slave Owner In America Was A Black Man

From evidence found in the earliest legal documents extant, it is Anthony Johnson, a black man, who we now must recognize as the nation's first slaveholder.  After all, the court battle he eventually won in 1655 to keep John Casor as his servant for life, identifies this unfortunate soul as the first slave in the recorded history of our country.  Claiming that he had been imported as an indentured servant, Casor attempted to transfer what he argued was his remaining time of service to Robert Parker, a white, but Johnson insisted that "hee had ye Negro for his life".

The unfortunate defendant in the court action, John Casor, thus became the first individual known to be legally declared and legally recognized slave by any colonial government.
The court ruled: "seriously consideringe and maturely weighing the premisses, doe fynde that the saide Mr. Robert Parker most unjustly keepeth the said Negro from Anthony Johnson his master....It is therefore the Judgement of the Court and ordered That the said John Casor Negro forthwith returne unto the service of the said master Anthony Johnson, And that mr. Robert Parker make payment of all charges in the suit."

Antonio Johnson (who later changed his name to Anthony), a black or black-hispanic mixed man, and his future wife Mary, a black woman, were among the very first non-white and non-Native American people to arrive in America.  They came by boat to Virginia in 1619, with other blacks and whites, as indentured servants.  Upon their release they were given land and eventually became wealthy enough to take on indentured servants of their own.  John Casor became one of Anthony Johnson's indentured servants.  In 1665 Anthony and Mary Johnson moved to Maryland to live out the rest of their lives, but not before setting the legal precedent for lifelong slavery of Christians, (mostly white Scots and Irish).  It didn't take long for rich land-owners and politicians to contrive ways to change the focus of slavery from religion to color, and slavery as we generally know it was born.

Slavery was birthed in the New World by a black man from Africa!

he concept of slavery in America, or in this case colonial America, originated with a court ruling of one black man owning another.  Prior to that ruling, there had been a generally accepted practice of "indentured servitude", of which blacks, whites, and many other races and ethnicities took part as a matter of course.  To suggest that slavery in this country came about as the embodiment of some white predisposition to the subjugation of blacks is a common misconception.  The structure of the slave trade was first build around the enslavement of white Scots and Irish in the late 1600's and early 1700's.  That structure was later applied to to enslavement of blacks but it certainly didn't start with blacks as many people continue to believe.  The racial component of slavery didn't come about until later and even then race was not a sole determining factor, as many free blacks also traded black slaves, both here and on the African continent.  The history of slavery in this country is much more nuanced and diverse than is commonly admitted.

Johnson was not "brought to trial for owning slaves".  Johnson himself went to court to petition for the return of one of his own servants, John Casar, because of an ongoing dispute that Casar had with Johnson over the length and conditions of his indenture.  At this time, slavery per se was actually "indentured servitude".  Many of the first colonial settlers indentured themselves (redemtioners) in exchange for passage to the New World, usually for seven or so years, and upon the end of their indenture, were granted their freedom and a few dozen acres of land by the British crown.  It was Johnson's contention in court that Casar was indentured to him for life and the court ruled in his favor.  Thus, Casar was the FIRST indentured servant in Virginia to be legally indentured for life (slave), which was a monumental legal distinction from temporary servitude.  That ruling paved the way for lifetime servitude, or "slavery" to be coded into law in 1660, but there was no racial component to that either.  The racial component of the new slavery did come into play, not because of race itself, but because blacks of the day had more experience growing tobacco, a huge cash crop in early Virginia and for their superior physical abilities which made them more productive than their white counterparts.  But white slaves served in other capacities also.

The court's ruling was the first legal precedent for lifetime servitude in Virginia.  It was also the cornerstone of the generational servitude laws that came 6 years later where it was determined that a child born of a servant was also a servant (slave), white or black.  Mr. Johnson did in fact own the first legally recognized lifetime slave in Virginia.



"In saving the Union, I have destroyed the Republic. Before me I have the Confederacy, which I loathe. But behind me I have the bankers, which I fear."
-- Abraham Lincoln

Emancipation?  Hardly.

If slavery was the only issue over which the Southern states seceded, then why, when the remaining Federal government proposed the original 13th Amendment to the Constitution which was designed to permanently protect the right of the states to decide the issue of slavery without Federal jurisdiction or interference, did the Southern states continue on their course?

On March 2, 1861, the 36th U. S. Congress (minus the seven seceded states of the Deep South) passed by a two-thirds majority a proposed amendment to the Constitution. Had it been ratified by the requisite number of states and signed by President Lincoln before the war intervened (who looked favorably on it as a way to lure the Southern states back into the Union), the proposed 13th Amendment would have prohibited the U. S. government from ever abolishing or interfering with slavery in any state.

The proposed 13th Amendment read: "No amendment shall be made to the Constitution which will authorize or give to Congress the power to abolish or interfere, within any State, with the domestic institutions there of, including that of persons held to labor or service by the laws of said State." Note that this amendment was designed to be unrepealable (i.e. "No amendment shall be made . . . .")

This exposes that claims that the Union went to war in 1861 to free the slaves were and are patent lies. It also undermines claims that the South seceded solely to preserve the institution of slavery.

The fact is that the so-called' Emancipation Proclamation" freed not a single person under Lincoln's legal jurisdiction and specifically kept those who were under his jurisdiction enslaved. It reads as follows:

"Whereas on the 22nd day of September, A.D. 1862, a proclamation was issued by the President of the United States, containing, among other things, the following, to wit:

"That on the 1st day of January, A.D. 1863, all persons held as slaves within any State or designated part of a State the people whereof shall then be in rebellion against the United States shall be then, thenceforward, and forever free...

Arkansas, Texas, Louisiana (except the parishes of St. Bernard, Plaquemines, Jefferson, St. John, St. Charles, St. James, Ascension, Assumption, Terrebone, Lafourche, St. Mary, St. Martin, and Orleans, including the city of New Orleans), Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, and Virginia (except the forty-eight counties designated as West Virginia), and also the counties of Berkeley, Accomac, Northampton, Elizabeth City, York, Princess Anne, and Norfolk, including the cities of Norfolk and Portsmouth, and which excepted parts are for the present left precisely as if this proclamation were not issued."

The documental historical fact is that the "Emancipation Proclamation" precisely and specifically EXCLUDED every slave in the Union or Union-controlled territory (including the whole Confederate state of Tennessee) that Lincoln could have actually affected. Slavery continued as a legal and Federally-protected fact in those Confederate states and areas defined as well as the Union states of Kansas, Missouri, West Virginia, Kentucky, Maryland, and Delaware.

While slavery ended in the areas INCLUDED in the "Emancipation Proclamation" in April, 1865, when the Confederacy ceased to exist, it continued LEGALLY and under protection of Federal law in the states and areas listed above until December, 1865. The United States remained a slave nation for eight months AFTER the Confederacy ceased to exist...and the only two states to refuse to ratify the 13th Amendment were Texas and the Union state of Delaware.

When looking to discover the true nature of the self-avowed racist, white supremacist Lincoln, suggested reading is "Forced Into Glory: Abraham Lincoln's White Dream," a book written by respected Black author and Executive Editor of EBONY magazine, Lerone Bennett, Jr., and published by the Johnson Publishing Company, available at It has the uncomfortable position of dealing with the facts of Lincoln's words and deeds, not the fantasies assigned him by fawning admirers. Here's a Youtube video of Mr. Bennett talking about the book. 

The United States flag flew over a slave nation from 1776 until December, 1865, some eight months _after_ the Confederacy and slavery in the South had ceased to exist. During the four years of the War and afterwards the states of Kentucky, Missouri, Kansas, West Virginia, and Delaware were Union slaveholding states and slavery was legal under Federal law. In 1863, after the "Emancipation Proclamation," Free Men of Color were arrested, fined, and sold into slavery in Illinois for the "high misdemeanor" of staying in the state longer than ten days. Union General U.S. Grant expelled all Jews from his Army in December, 1862, and expelled Jewish citizens "as a class" from their homes "within 24 hours" - he freed his slaves only when compelled to do so by the 13th Amendment in December 1865.

Black Southerners fought alongside white, Hispanic, Native American, Jewish, and thousands of foreign-born Southerners. They fought in mixed units and they fought in all-Black units as documented in Tennessee by _Union_ sources. Federal Official Records, Series I, Vol XVI Part I, pg. 805 records: "There were also quite a number of negroes attached to the Texas and Georgia troops, who were armed and equipped, and took part in the several engagements with my forces during the day." The 85th Indiana Volunteer Infantry reported to the Indianapolis Daily Evening Gazette that on 5 March 1863: "During the fight the [artillery] battery in charge of the 85th Indiana [Volunteer Infantry] was attacked by [*in italics*] two rebel negro regiments. [*end italics*]."

Union soldiers robbed, raped and murdered Free Black and slave Southerners they had come to "emancipate." Union "recruiters" hunted, kidnapped and tortured Black Southerners to compel them to serve in the Union Army. At the Battle of the Crater white Union soldiers bayoneted retreating Black Union soldiers and the 54th Massachusetts was fired upon by Maine troops while assaulting Battery Wagner in South Carolina. The Federal Official Records and memoirs of the USCT document of all these war crimes.

Since the Civil War the American flag has flown over a country that has continued attempted genocide against its Native Peoples with the able help of Black "Buffalo Soldiers," condoned the slavery of Orientals in California well into the 1880s, fought wars to maintain dominance over countries whose people were not white, and imprisoned its own citizens because of the color of their skin as they did with the Japanese-Americans from 1941-1945. Thank then-governor of California and former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court and "Champion of Civil Rights" Earl Warren and Franklin D. Roosevelt for that violation of the Bill of Rights.

Native Americans have a greater right to object to symbols which reflect the genocidal practices directed against them for almost 400 years. During the War for Southern Independence the Confederacy signed formal alliances with the Five Civilized Tribes which recognized their ethnic and geographic sovereignty and offered them equal pay and treatment while Lincoln was signing orders for the mass hanging of 39 Northeastern tribesmen for daring to try to reclaim confiscated tribal lands.


Pennsylvania Gazette, Oct. 15, 1730.
"RUN away on the 13th of September last from Abraham Lincoln of Springfield in the County of Chester [Penn.], a Negro Man named Jack, about 30 Years of Age, low Stature, speaks little or no English, has a Scar by the Corner of one Eye, in the Form of a V, his Teeth notched, and the Top of one of his Fore Teeth broke; He had on when he went away an old Hat, a grey Jacket partly like a Sailor's Jacket. Whoever secures the said Negro and brings him to his Master, or to *Mordecai Lincoln ... shall have Twenty Shillings Reward and reasonable Charges" 
* Mordecai Lincoln (1686-1736) was great-great-grandfather of President Abraham Lincoln.


Not a Confederate Flag in Sight

The most cruel aspect of the British slave trade to the West Indies was the extreme mortality rate among sugar plantation slaves, which prompted increased traffic in slave importation there and increased misery for the poor Africans. In contrast, the rising birthrate and population among slaves in the American South indicates that the unfortunate institution was far more humane. But the question to answer is this: If none of the slavers of various countries were flying Confederate Battle Flags and the American Confederacy had no part in this nefarious traffic which populated the British colonies in North America; how is it that only the Confederacy is tainted by its late association with African slavery, and any symbols of it are seen as "racist"?
Bernhard Thuersam, Executive Director
Cape Fear Historical Institute
Post Office Box 328
Wilmington, NC 28402


Not A Confederate Flag in Sight:

"During the American Revolution the (British) slave trade was discouraged by French and colonial American privateers. Peacetime recovery was slow (and)...By 1787 British traders still had not regained their former level of human exports. In that year some 137 ships with a combined tonnage of 22,263 and with crews of about 5,000 sailed from British ports to trade for slaves on the African coast. They carried British goods (which) were delivered to British factories on the coast, part to private black dealers for slaves. With (the slaves on board) the ships began the difficult eight-week journey across the Atlantic (and) because of the frightful conditions on board, perhaps only 34,000 (of 42,000) remained alive when they reached the West Indies. There they were sold for an average of 35 pounds each to English, French, Dutch, Danish and Spanish (plantation) proprietors, either directly or through agents.
The organization of the British slave trade centered in Liverpool and Bristol. Aggressiveness, specialization, and proximity to the manufacturers of African trade goods had helped the former town overcome the lead of the latter in the first half of the century. In 1787 Liverpool sent 78 Africa, whereas Bristol sent only 31 ships...a few (slave) ships also cleared from London, Lancaster and Poole. None came from Scotland.
(In March 1790) a total of 139 Liverpool ships was employed in slaving, of which half were owned by only eight companies. The other half were scattered among another thirty-one owners. Liverpool slave merchants often engaged in other kinds of shipping, as well as banking and insurance. Around Liverpool a network of small manufacturers and tradesmen supplied the "trade goods" used or barter in Africa---beads, textiles, ironmongery, brass bars, cheap rifles, liquor, and so on---and generally fitted out the ships for each new venture. Suppliers of trade goods around Manchester employed "upwards of 18,000 men, women and children. In Liverpool itself, participation in the trade was almost a community is well-known that many of the small vessels that import about a hundred slaves are fitted out by attorneys, drapers, ropers, grocers, tallow-chandlers, barbers, tailors, etc; some have one-eighth (share in a ship's capital), some a fifteenth, some a thirty-second."
A striking proportion of the 38,000 to 42,000 slaves purchased annually by the British traders in Africa were destined for non-British territories on the other side of the ocean. George Hibbert, a London slave and sugar merchant, estimated that 15,567 slaves were annually imported, and remained, in the British West Indies, leaving 23,000 to 27,000 for other Caribbean buyers. The foreign market for slaves had been built up during the eighteenth century with the approval of the British government. According to the economic ideas of the day, slaves were a commodity whose sale abroad would help the balance of trade. Not until later did the slaves come to be seen as factors of production and hence responsible for the upsurge in foreign competition in the sugar market.
Before 1775 the British slave merchants faced little competition in foreign markets. Their proximity to supplies of cheap trade goods, and their superior financial organization gave them an advantage over other European traders. (But) Aggressive merchants from Massachusetts (and) Rhode Island...were reported to have vastly expanded their trade to Africa immediately after the revolutionary war, and by 1790 they were even fitting out in English ports to save money. Most of them were supplying the Southern States, but they found it easy to ship by way of the Caribbean to pick up extra business. Spain, having gained two small islands off the Cameroons coast in 1778 tried hard to establish her own slave trade (and) the French had already accomplished (her own slave trade)... Before 1778 the French had imported 14,000 to 15,000 Africans a year in their own ships, while purchasing even more from the British.
(According to the) Slave Trade Regulating Bill of 1788...the number of slaves annually exported from Africa was given as follows: 38,000 by the British, 20,000 by the French, 10,000 by the Portuguese, 4,000 by the Dutch, and 2,000 by the Danes.
As in Bristol, the defense of the slave trade settled in the hands of the most official and respectable body: in Liverpool, the Mayor and Common Council. The Council was a self-perpetuating body which co-opted new members as needed, and over the years it had come to be dominated by the African (slave trade) merchants. Even the Mayor was a slave trader. Thus the African merchants were able to initiate petitions, or send delegations, in three separate capacities, a position they used to combat abolition.
The day to day work of opposing abolition fell mainly to the member of Parliament: for Bristol, Banastre Tarleton and the brothers Gascoyne. Banastre Tarleton was elected...on the record of his brutally heroic record in the American War. In 1787 he published a boastful "History of the Campaigns of 1780 and 1781 in the Southern Provinces of North America" which cast such discredit on his superior officers that Tarleton lost his chance for further promotion. Loquacious, strong-minded, passably educated and well-known in society, and outspoken Whig and friend of the Prince of Wales...(Tarleton) is the M.P. most closely associated with the defense of the slave trade because he sat for Liverpool from 1790 to 1806, when the abolition question was at its height. Such were the defenders of the slave trade."
(The Abolition of the Slave Trade in England, 1784-1807, Dale H. Porter, Archon Books, 1970)



1.  "The South was the aggressor."   

I came to the Civil War debate as someone who was very pro-Northern.
One of the things that struck me like a ton of bricks as I began to
read on the subject was that it was obvious that, contrary to what I
had always supposed and been taught, the North, not the South, was the
aggressor.  This was the first crack in my pro-Northernism.  Even
before I became aware of Lincoln's statements to Fox and Browning
about his motive for sending the armed naval convoy to Fort Sumter, I
recognized his sending of the convoy as a deliberate provocation, the
equivalent of stepping across a line or bumping someone on the
shoulder and daring them to do something about it.   

What was even more revealing, and surprising, were the events that
followed the bloodless attack on Sumter.  The South did not invade it
was going to invade the North.  The South did not announce it was
going to try to overthrow the federal government.  The South did not
refuse to recognize the right of the Northern states to live as they
pleased.  No, it was the North that announced it was going to invade
the South, and that did invade the South.  It was the North that
announced it was going to overthrow the Confederate government and
force the Southern states to return to the Union against their will.
"So how in the world," I remember wondering to myself, "can anyone say
the South was the aggressor, much less that the South somehow started
the war?"   

2.  "The South started the war."   

Huh?  The North invaded the South even as the South was still calling
for peaceful coexistence, but the South started the war???  That is
Orwellian logic.  It's beyond absurd.  "But the South fired on
Sumter!" is the usual reply.  Get real.  If the U.S. had seized an
island fort in any other nation's harbor and then sent an armed naval
convoy to resupply that unwanted garrison, such an act would have been
universally recognized as hostile and provocative.  A bloodless attack
on a fort you have seized and refused to leave is hardly a credible,
moral excuse for launching a brutal invasion, especially when the
other side has offered to pay compensation for the fort if you just
will leave it peacefully.   

Of course, we now know that the Republicans had no intention of
allowing the South to remain independent, and that they were
determined to pick a fight so they could use it as an excuse to invade
the South.  Lincoln himself made it quite clear that he sent the naval
convoy to Sumter hoping it would provoke an attack.  Even before
Confederate leaders learned of the naval convoy's pending arrival,
they recognized that the Republicans were not going to allow the South
to leave in peace.  They knew that if they allowed Sumter to be
resupplied, Lincoln would send a force to some other formerly federal
installation to "enforce federal authority" with the intent of
provoking an armed response that would then be used as a pretext for

3.  "Fort Sumter was federal property, so the North had every right to
seek to maintain control of it."   

One, under the original understanding of American sovereignty, the
ultimate sovereign for a state was the citizenry of that state.  Once
the citizens of SC voted to rescind their ratification and to resume
their independent status, all formerly federal property in the state
reverted back to their ownership.  The citizens of SC had the sole,
exclusive right to decide whether or not to join the Union, and they
had the sole, exclusive right to decide whether or not to remain in
the Union.  Granted, when such a reversion occurs, it is only right
that compensation be paid for the property that has reverted back to
the state citizenry's control, and both SC and then the Confederacy
offered to pay such compensation.   

Two, what kind of a government launches a brutal invasion and forces a
group of states back into a "union" over a fort that wasn't even
completed and that the other side was willing to pay compensation
for?  Our Patriot forefathers bitterly resented the fact that the
British would not allow the colonies to go in peace.  They felt it was
tyrannical and immoral for the British to try to force the colonies to
rejoin the empire against their will.  The fundamental premise of the
Revolution was that a people have a natural right to separate
themselves from an existing government and to form a new one of their
own choosing, and that this right should be recognized and respected.
Lincoln and his fellow Republicans behaved toward the Southern states
in the same undemocratic, tyrannical way that the British behaved
toward the colonies, if not worse.   

Was it really worth over 600K dead and over 1M wounded simply to
"enforce federal authority" at the unfinished, previously ignored Fort
Sumter?  Of course, Sumter was just the excuse.  No moral, just
government launches a brutal invasion over a bloodless attack against
an unfinished fort that nobody has cared two cents about, especially
when the other side has offered to pay for the fort and has made it
clear that it wants good relations and peaceful coexistence.  But the
Republicans didn't want peaceful coexistence.  They didn't want to let
the Southern states live under a government of their own choosing.
They didn't recognize the citizens of the Southern states as the
ultimate sovereign of those states.  They believed in mob rule, that
the Northern states somehow had the right to use the federal
government to force the Southern states to rejoin the Union, that now
"federal authority" was superior to the sovereignty of the people in
the Southern states.  They rejected James Madison's explanation that
the people were sovereign only as citizens of their respective states
and not as a whole.   

And what happened to the Northern troops at Sumter after the bloodless
attack?  Were they executed?  Taken prisoner?  Held hostage?  Roughed
up a little bit and then sent packing?  No, none of the above.  They
were allowed to surrender with full military honors, were saluted by
Confederate soldiers, and were allowed to return to the North in
peace.  Yet Lincoln's response to all this was to launch a massive
invasion and start the worst war in our history.   

Mike Griffith
Civil War website


Senator Wigfall on the Cause of Discontent

Despite assurances by Northern politicians that the proposed 13th Amendment (and signed by Lincoln) of 1861 would guarantee slavery in the South would not leave the Union, the South chose a new federation in which their taxes would be spent to enrich themselves.
Bernhard Thuersam, Executive Director
Cape Fear Historical Institute
Post Office Box 328
Wilmington, NC 28402


Senator Wigfall on the Cause of Discontent:
"Said Senator Louis Wigfall, of Texas, March 4th 1861 in the United States Senate, only a few hours before Mr. Lincoln's inauguration:
It is early in the morning and I hope I shall not say anything that may be construed as offensive. I rise merely that we may have an understanding of this question.
It is not slavery in the Territories, it is not expansion, which is the difficulty. If the resolution which the Senator from Wisconsin introduced here denying the right of Secession, had been adopted by two-thirds of each branch of this department of the Government, and had been ratified by three-fourths of the States, I have no hesitation in saying that, so far as the State in which I live and to which I owe my allegiance is concerned, if she had no other cause for a disruption of the Union taking place, she would have undoubtedly have gone out. The moment you deny the right of free government to the free white men of the South, they will leave the Government. They believe in the Declaration of Independence. 
In the "address of the People of South Carolina, assembled in justify the passage of the South Carolina Secession Ordinance of 1860, it is declared that (excerpted): "The one great evil from which all other evils have flowed is the overthrow of the Constitution of the United States. The Government of the United States is no longer the Government of Confederated Republics, but of a consolidated Democracy. It is no longer a free Government, but a Despotism. It is, in fact, such a Government as Great Britain attempted to set over our Fathers; and which was resisted and defeated by a seven years struggle for Independence. The Revolution of 1776 turned upon one great principle, self-government---and self-taxation, the criterion of self-government.
The Southern States now stand exactly in the same position towards the Northern States, that the Colonies did towards Great Britain. The Northern States, having the majority in Congress, claim the same power of omnipotence in legislation as the British Parliament. "The General Welfare" is the only limit of legislation of either; and the majority in Congress, and in the British Parliament, are the sole judges of the expediency of the legislation this "General Welfare" requires. Thus the Government of the United States has become a consolidated Government; and the people of the Southern States are compelled to meet the very despotism their fathers threw off in the Revolution of 1776.
The consolidation of the Government of Great Britain over the Colonies, was attempted to be carried out by the taxes. The British Parliament undertook to tax the Colonies to promote British interests...Our fathers resisted this pretension. And so the Southern States, toward the Northern States, in the vital matter of taxation. They are in a minority in Congress. Their representation in Congress is useless to protect them against unjust taxation; and they are taxed by the people of the North for their benefit, exactly as the people of Great Britain taxed our ancestors in the British Parliament for their benefit. For the last forty years, the taxes laid by the Congress...have been laid with a view of subserving the interests of the North. The people of the South have been taxed by duties on imports, not for revenue, but for an object inconsistent with revenue---to promote, by prohibitions, Northern interest in the productions of their mines and manufactures.
The people of the Southern States are not only taxed for the benefit of the Northern States, but after the taxes are collected, three-fourths of them are expended at the North. This cause...has made the cities of the South provincial. Their growth is paralyzed; they are mere suburbs of Northern cities. The agricultural productions of the South are the basis of the foreign commerce of the United States; yet Southern cities do not carry it on. Our foreign trade is almost gradual and steady encroachments on the part of the people of the North, and acquiescence on the part of the South, the limitations in the Constitution have been swept away; and the Government of the United States has become consolidated, with a claim of limitless powers in its operations.
A majority in Congress, according to their interested and perverted views, is omnipotent. Numbers with them, is the great element of free Government. A majority is infallible and omnipotent. "The divine right to rule in Kings," is only transferred to the majority. The very object of all Constitutions, in free popular Government, is to restrain the majority. Constitutions, therefore, according to their theory, must be the most unrighteous inventions, restricting liberty. None ought to exist; but the body politic ought simply to have a political organization, to bring out and enforce the will of the majority. This theory is a remorseless despotism."
(The Great Conspiracy, Its Origin and History, John A. Logan, A.R. Hart & Company, 1886)


White Slavery, what the Scots already know
Hey, Bernhard, I wonder if the English have a wing in their museum to memorialize all the Scots that they enslaved???  I would be happy to see a tiny memorial to the 25,000 kidnapped Scots they sent to Barbados in chains to plant sugar cane.  that 25,000 planted the first sugar cane crop that resulted in the founding of the Mt. Gay Rum distillery in 1703.  That distillery produced the rum that fueled the British side of the Atlantic Slave Trade. When you look at the British Union Jack, you still see the beloved Cross of St. Andrew of Scotland crushed under the oppressive weight of the Cross of St. George!  I've always said that "Political Correctness" can cut both ways.  Do the English really want to go there?
Jim Walters,
KTJ, FSA  Scot,
Laird O ' Tha Haggis
The Caledonian Kitchen


More Forrest Firefighting

 Dear Mrs. Stewart,
I was sadly disheartened after reading your opinion about Lt Gen Nathan Bedford Forrest, and the Jax Fl HS bearing his moniker.
Published opinions - yours included - only further the negative racial stereotypes and add to compound the unity that America should stand for.
As with my reply to your comment in the response box below your opinion, I will add some info that is most important to this situation.
I cannot make you read it, nor with it make you change your opinion in any measure. However, with this information, I would strongly urge you to examine it at your leisure and carefully weigh your opinions and beliefs to the facts given thereunto.
If this info causes a new insight, great! Perhaps a public comment would help set the record straight. Nelson Winbush of Florida - a black man whose black ancestor rode as a confederate soldier with Lt Gen NB Forrest, as well as Jim Ellis of Tennessee who is a descendant of NBF just might appreciate it.
OK, here is the info needed to make I feel a fair and balanced decision:
The Ku Klux Klan was founded in December 1865. 

6 men were the founders, done in a law office in Pulaski Tn.
1. Captain John C. Lester - Knight Hawk
2. Captain John B. Kennedy - Grand Magi
3. Frank O. McCord - Grand Cyclops
4. Calvin E. Jones - (son of Thomas M. Jones)
5. Richard R. Reed - Lictor
6. James R. Crowe - Grand Turk

Nathan Bedford Forrest is not listed as 1 of the 6 founders. However, while Forrest's name was used without his consent for recruitment, he did publicly call for and had disbanded the KKK in 1869. He was cleared from involvement in the KKK and any 'massacre at Ft Pillow" by the US Congress.
Here is the complete history of how and why the school is named for the NBF

Eyewitness accounts of Ft Pillow
"That Devil Forrest, The Life of Nathan Bedford Forrest"
John Allan Wyeth, Pages 322-324
"Major Booth, from all accounts an excellent and brave commander, was dead. Major Bradford, evidently as stated by Major General S. A. Hurlburt, “without experience”, had succeeded to command, and had made the fatal error of giving his men free access to the liquor with which the commissary of the fort was supplied. The sworn testimony of a large number of honorable and trustworthy men establishes this fact beyond contradiction. Forrest so stated this fact, and Generals Chalmers and Bell, Colonels McCullough, Wisdom and Barteau, and many more surviving Confederates swear that vessels containing whiskey were distributed along the inside of the works, with cups and dippers convenient for use. To those familiar with the two classes, black and white, which composed the bulk of the private soldiers in the garrison at Fort Pillow, and their fondness for intoxicating drinks, especially so with the Negroes just free from slavery, it will be readily be accepted that they did not fail to take advantage of the opportunities here offered to drink to excess. Their conduct during the truce and the insane resistance beneath the bluff bear out the allegation that many were intoxicated.
Meanwhile it is the general testimony of the survivors that the troops of the garrison, especially the colored soldiers who now had mounted the parapet in considerable numbers, shouted to McCulloch’s men, many of whom had come out from behind the barracks and houses which concealed and protected them, daring them to try to take the fort and hurling epithets at them couched in most obscene and abusive terms and accompanied by gestures and actions not to be described. If their officers made any effort to put a stop to this unusual exhibition, it was without effect."

A portion of British General Viscount Wolseley's estimate of Forrest, published in the 1892 April and May issues of 'United Service Magazine' of London:
"It is not my intention to enter here into the much vexed question of Forrest's dealing with the garrison of Fort Pillow.  The story was told at the time in the Northern Press, with a skillful seasoning of horrors which only those can equal who are accustomed to prepare these sort of repasts for the public, or who have some party object to accomplish.  He reached the place at nine a.m., the 15th of April 1864, after a ride of about seventy-two miles since six p,m, the previous evening, and having surrounded the place, he duly summoned the commandant to surrender with the garrison as prisoners of war.  Negotiations followed, which occupied some time, but led to no result.  The signal for assault, being then given, the place was quickly taken.  There was a heavy loss on both sides, but all things considered, including the intense ill-feeling then existing between the men of Tennessee who fought on one side and on the other, I do not think the fact that about one-half the small garrison of a place taken by assault, was either killed or wounded, evinced any very unusual bloodthirstiness on the part of the assailants,  The unexpectedness of this blow, and the heavy loss in killed and wounded it entailed, served much to increase Forrest's reputation as a daring Cavalry leader, and to intensify the dread in which his name was held far and near amongst his enemies."

Private John Milton, Co. E, Seventh Tennessee Cavalry, published his 'Notes' in Memphis in 1909.  Excerpt about Fort Pillow:
"There was much talk when we got quietly settled in camp at Verona, Miss., about the capture of Fort Pillow, an affair in which the Seventh Tennessee, being on detached duty near Randolph, did not participate.  most of this was in regard to what seemed to be the senseless conduct of the garrison after they must have seen that the place was doomed.  After the officer in command had refused to comply with the demand to surrender and the whole Confederate force moved on their works, the entire garrison, having left their flag flying, fell back to a safer place under the bank of the river.  Much has been said by Northern writers concerning what they term an unnecessary slaughter.  It should be remembered that this same garrison of both whites and negroes had committed numerous outrages upon the people of the surrounding country.  These things had come to the ears of the Confederates and many of the victims had petitioned Forrest to avenge their wrongs by breaking up what appeared to be a den o thieves and marauders.  Howbeit, part of them were Tennesseans.  Add to all this, that the garrison had been lavishly stimulated with whisky, as was evident from the fact that a number of barrels of whisky and beer with tin dippers attached were bound by the Confederates, and it is not hard to see why there was unnecessary slaughter.  The incident could be dismissed by saying that those within the fort knew that they deserved condign punishment because of the outrages committed on innocent people, and being somewhat in a state of intoxication, were incited to resist to the last extremity, while the Confederates were incited to victory by every instinct that impels a manly soldier to resent an insult and to protect the innocent.  If General Forrest had no other victory to his credit, his fame would be secure."

Here is the link to the 1871 US Congressional Hearing of N.B.Forrest. Pages 3 - 41.;idno=ACA4911.0013.001;rgn=full%20text;view=toc;cc=moa

Lt General NB Forrest’s farewell speech to his troops:
Confederate Correspondence, Orders, And Returns Relating To Operations In Kentucky, Southwestern Virginia, Tennessee, Northern And Central Georgia, Mississippi, Alabama, And West Florida, From March 16 To June 30, 1865.--#8
Gainesville, Ala., May 9, 1865.
SOLDIERS: By an agreement made between Lieutenant-General Taylor, commanding the Department of Alabama, Mississippi, and East Louisiana, and Major-General Canby, commanding U.S. forces, the troops of this department have been surrendered. I do not think it proper or necessary at this time to refer to the causes which have reduced us to this extremity, nor is it now a matter of material consequence to us how such results were brought about. That we are beaten is a self-evident fact, and any further resistance on our part would be justly regarded as the very height of folly and rashness. The armies of Generals Lee and Johnston having surrendered, you are the last of all the troops of the C. S. Army east of the Mississippi River to lay down your arms. The cause for which you have so long and so manfully struggled, and for which you have braved dangers, endured privations and sufferings, and made so many sacrifices, is to-day hopeless. The Government which we sought to establish and perpetuate is at an end. Reason dictates and humanity demands that no more blood be shed. Fully realizing and feeling that such is the case, it is your duty and mine to lay down our arms, submit to the "powers that be," and to aid in restoring peace and establishing law and order throughout the land. The terms upon which you were surrendered are favorable, and should be satisfactory and acceptable to all. They manifest a spirit of magnanimity and liberality on the part of the Federal authorities which should be met on our part by a faithful compliance with all the stipulations and conditions therein expressed. As your commander, I sincerely hope that every officer and soldier of my command will cheerfully obey the orders given and carry out in good faith all the terms of the cartel.
Those who neglect the terms and refuse to be paroled may assuredly expect when arrested to be sent North and imprisoned. Let those who are absent from their commands, from whatever cause, report at once to this place or to Jackson, Miss.; or, if too remote from either, to the nearest U.S. post or garrison for parole. Civil war, such as you have just passed through, naturally engenders feelings of animosity, hatred, and revenge. It is our duty to divest ourselves of all such feelings, and so far as in our power to do so to cultivate friendly feelings toward those with whom we have so long contested and heretofore so widely but honestly differed. Neighborhood feuds, personal animosities, and private differences should be blotted out, and when you return home a manly, straightforward course of conduct will secure the respect even of your enemies. Whatever your responsibilities may be to Government, to society, or to individuals, meet them like men. The attempt made to establish a separate and independent confederation has failed, but the consciousness of having done your duty faithfully and to the end will in some measure repay for the hardships you have undergone. In bidding you farewell, rest assured that you carry with you my best wishes for your future welfare and happiness. Without in any way referring to the merits of the cause in which we have been engaged, your courage and determination as exhibited on many hard-fought fields has elicited the respect and admiration of friend and foe. And I now cheerfully and gratefully acknowledge my indebtedness to the officers and men of my command, whose zeal, fidelity, and unflinching bravery have been the great source of my past success in arms. I have never on the field of battle sent you where I was unwilling to go myself, nor would I now advise you to a course which I felt myself unwilling to pursue. You have been good soldiers, you can be good citizens. Obey the laws, preserve your honor, and the Government to which you have surrendered can afford to be and will be magnanimous.

And finally, NB Forrest's speech to blacks:
Memphis Daily Avalanche, July 6, 1875, 1.
"July 4, 1875 - Memphis, Tennessee -
Miss Lou Lewis was introduced to General Forrest then presented him with a bouquet of flowers and said: 'Mr. Forrest — allow me to present you this bouquet as a token of reconciliation, an offering of peace and good will.'
Gen. Forrest received the flowers with a bow, and replied:
'Miss Lewis, ladies and gentlemen — I accept these flowers as a token of reconciliation between the white and colored races of the South. I accept them more particularly, since they come from a colored lady, for if there is any one on God's great earth who loves the ladies, it is myself.
'This is a proud day for me. Having occupied the position I have for thirteen years, and being misunderstood by the colored race, I take this occasion to say that I am your friend. I am here as the representative of the Southern people — one that has been more maligned than any other.
'I assure you that every man who was in the Confederate army is your friend. We were born on the same soil, breathe the same air, live in the same land, and why should we not be brothers and sisters.
'When the war broke out I believed it to be my duty to fight for my country, and I did so. I came here with the jeers and sneers of a few white people, who did not think it right. I think it is right, and will do all I can to bring about harmony, peace and unity. I want to elevate every man, and to see you take your places in your shops, stores and offices.
'I don't propose to say anything about politics, but I want you to do as I do — go to the polls and select the best men to vote for. I feel that you are free men, I am a free man, and we can do as we please. I came here as a friend and whenever I can serve any of you I will do so.
'We have one Union, one flag, one country; therefore, let us stand together. Although we differ in color, we should not differ in sentiment.
'Many things have been said in regard to myself, and many reports circulated, which may perhaps be believed by some of you, but there are many around me who can contradict them. I have been many times in the heat of battle — oftener, perhaps, than any within the sound of my voice. Men have come to me to ask for quarter, both black and white, and I have shielded them.
'Do your duty as citizens, and if any are oppressed, I will be your friend. I thank you for the flowers, and assure you that I am with you in heart and hand.'"
I will offer you my email address if you wish a civil dialogue. I only seek truth and understanding of historical fact.
I thank you for your time.
God Bless
Billy Bearden


Victory: School Board Keeps Nathan B. Forrest High School's Name

 Lovers of the South, we had a great victory last Monday, November 3rd, here in Jacksonville, Florida, CSA. The Duval County School Board voted 5-2 to retain the name of Nathan B. Forrest High School. Tremendous pressure had been placed on the Board over the past two years to change the school's name.
Please accept my grateful thanks to all of you who wrote and called School Board members or spoke at the meetings on behalf of our Southern heritage and history. Your efforts made the victory possible. I admit I was very worried that we would lose this one because several of the Board members are about to retire or cannot run again due to term limits; they would not have to answer to voters. Instead, they listened and remembered their history.
In today's Sunday Florida Times-Union, there is a front page story on the decision. (See ) According to it, our Mayor John Peyton, Executive V.P. of the Jacksonville Regional Chamber of Commerce Jerry Mallot, and Public Relations guru Michael Munz are unhappy with the decision. If you like, you can contact them at:
Mayor John Peyton
City Hall
117 W. Duval St.
Jacksonville, FL 32202
(904) 630-1776
Mr. Jerry Mallett, Executive Vice President
Jacksonville Regional Chamber of Commerce
5000 Norwood Ave.
Jacksonville, FL 32208
(904) 366.6654
Mr. Michael Munz
Dalton Agency
140 W. Monroe St., Ste. 200
Jacksonville, FL 32202
(904) 398-5222
FAX: (904) 398-5220
As Jesus told us, we must be ever vigilant for the enemy lurks around waiting to devour. Nothing could be truer than with the name of Nathan B. Forrest High School here. Every few years, we have to refight this battle. I will keep you posted as to any future developments.
Again, thank you for all your hard work and support. Be blessed -- Deo Vindice, Sue 



Late in the war, when the Confederates were short on troops, Gen. Pat Cleburne and others wanted to free slaves to fight.

 Well, the Confederate Congress DID in fact pass a law and raise black troops. But then blacks were already serving in the CS Army anyway.
Senate Bill, No. 190.
A Bill to Provide for Raising Two Hundred Thousand Negro Troops
1         SECTION 1. The Congress of the Confederate States of America
2 do enact, That the President of the Confederate States be
3 and he is hereby authorized to receive into the military service,
4 any number of Negro troops not to exceed two hundred thousand.

 1         SEC. 2. That the President be and he is authorized, to assign
2 officers already appointed, or make appointments of officers, to
3 raise and command said troops; and the same, when raised,
4 shall be organized as provided under existing laws.



"If they had behaved differently; if they had come against us observing strict discipline, protecting women and children, respecting private property and proclaiming as their only object the putting down of armed resistance to the Federal Government, we should have found it perhaps more difficult to prevail against them.

But they could not help showing their cruelty and rapacity, they could not dissemble their true nature, which is the real cause of this war. If they had been capable of acting otherwise, they would not have been Yankees, and we should never have quarreled with them."
-- Judah P. Benjamin, Confederate Secretary of War













A History of Orange