Swedish Easter Wizard?

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Re: Swedish Easter Wizard?

Postby Murfreesboro » Thu May 15, 2014 7:49 am

Kolchak, you really taught me something about the Indians' sympathies during the Civil War. I had known nothing about that, but it makes sense. Many of those in the Oklahoma Territory were relocated Cherokees who had been marched there illegally under Andrew Jackson on the Trail of Tears (which goes straight through Murfreesboro). When you read about that period of history, it breaks your heart. The Cherokee did everything by the book. They trusted in the American Government. They got a Supreme Court ruling in their favor, and they still lost their land. No wonder they hated and distrusted the Union.


Growing up in Mississippi during the Civil Rights era, I imbibed an "us-vs.-them" mentality I've been having to shed my entire life long. I first realized how similar Midwesterners are to Southerners when I was in grad school at Vanderbilt, and many of my acquaintances (including my best friend) were from that part of the country. Years later, I started attending my husband's Lutheran church here in Murfreesboro, where everyone else is either from the Midwest or upstate New York. So I have learned from my friends at church how similar much of New York is to the South. It is really only NYC that is very different, but of course, that is the part of New York we hear about, and the place we are most likely to visit.

Mike, I think of the Deep South as Mississippi, Alabama, Louisiana, and Georgia. (Well, OK, I should include the Carolinas, especially South Carolina, but I have spent very little time there.) I have lived in Texas and in Virginia, but neither one of those states seems very "Deep South" to me. Virginia is historically Deep South, but nowadays it is much more mid-Atlantic. Believe me, the people I knew up there had little knowledge of, and less interest in, Mississippi or even Nashville. And Texas is just its own place.

I have a book on order right now that examines the root causes of the Civil War in a different way (I am blanking on the title). From its precis, I think it is arguing that New England was jealous of the South even before slavery became a big issue, because New England felt it should be the leader of the new nation, but the leadership moved to the South right away. I know Southerners have been saying for generations that Northern jealousy of the South had a lot to do with it, but this is the first time I've ever seen anyone with scholarly credentials say so in print. Otherwise my most direct knowledge of the Southern perspective on the War comes from Mary Chesnutt's diary. She was emphatic that the issue was independence, not slavery, and she even thought that the South made a big mistake not freeing its slaves from the get-go. That mistake left the moral high ground to the North.
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Re: Swedish Easter Wizard?

Postby MauEvig » Thu May 15, 2014 11:39 am

Perhaps...both sides of the war were wrong then?

The Union was wrong for it's jealousy of the South and treatment of the Native Americans. The Confederacy was wrong for it's determination in keeping the slaves under any circumstance.

It seems no matter the outcome, it was a huge lose-lose situation.

I suppose coming from someone who is from Upstate New York (and I can most definitely attest to the fact that we aren't that different from the South, but few people here realize it) it feels VERY southern where I am. I'm still getting used to "y'all" as opposed to "you guys." But I live in the country part of Virginia. Maybe the "rural" areas of Virginia can be considered "deep south" while the more urban areas are more "mid Atlantic" and such. For the record, I don't live anywhere near Virginia Beach either, but I think Murf might have a ball park idea. It's still so surreal that you knew about the Highland Maple Festival Murf. lol.

This image, really puts it best: https://scontent-b-lga.xx.fbcdn.net/hph ... 8397_n.jpg
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Re: Swedish Easter Wizard?

Postby Murfreesboro » Fri May 16, 2014 6:19 am

Great images, Mau.

One of my best friends from church is from a farm family near Buffalo. I have realized from my twenty-year acquaintance with her that her values, political perspectives, etc., are quite similar to those of Southerners.

I lived in Richmond, VA, from New Year's 1986 until the summer of 1987. After that we moved up to Staunton, in the Shenandoah Valley, where we lived from summer 1987-summmer 1994. I'm sure my experience of Virginia was colored by my professional experience. I was an English prof, first at the Univ. of Richmond, and then at Mary Baldwin College. Naturally, when you are part of a college faculty, you are mixing with people who, for the most part, are not native to the area. My colleagues were from all over the country. So even though we were all "Virginians" at that time, the attitudes and perspectives I was getting were not typical of people who had been born and raised there.

My husband and I did attend church, both in Richmond and in the Staunton area, so we met local people in that way. Also, once we had our first child, we were meeting locals through day care arrangements, etc. And during the summertime I would work with a community theater in Verona, VA, where some of the people I met were local, too.


Still, my husband and I were quite aware that Virginia was somehow Southern with an asterisk. Part of it was a snobbishness we encountered up there. For example, when we lived in Richmond (and this was the '80s, so maybe that had something to do with it), people had bumper stickers on their cars that said things like, "South of the James--for Members Only," and "The West End--By Invitation Only." And these were simply neighborhoods where these people lived, where they had bought houses.

When we moved up to Staunton, I was bugged by what a two-tier town it seemed to be. There were people, the ones I mixed with, who saw plays in NYC every summer and didn't think too much about flying to Europe. It wasn't that big a deal to them to go over there. Yet I would see families of people walking along the street--typically a tall lanky man, an overweight wife, and four or five stair-step kids walking behind them--and it was obvious that people like that weren't doing too well financially. What I missed in Staunton was the sort of "middle" middle class I had known growing up in Mississippi & Arkansas, people for whom a trip to Europe was attainable, but a once-in-a-lifetime trip, and who lived in comfortable houses, but not artsy-fartsy stuff. IDK, maybe this was just Staunton, which is a pretty little town, but seems sort of frozen in time.

My husband and I just felt like there was something "off" about Virginia. It seemed slow and snobbish and not like "our" South. Maybe it had something to do with our having moved up there from Atlanta, which is a very fast-paced city. Richmond seemed like it was standing still the whole time we were there. And it bugged us to think that people from the Northeast probably came South to Virginia and thought that it was typical of the whole South.

Don't get me wrong--Virginia is a beautiful state, and I have missed some of the friends I had there, and some of its particular beauty and historical sites. In fact, our family is planning to go up there this summer so our daughter can have some college visits. I'm looking forward to it. But I am very, very happy to be living here now. Maybe it's just what I'm used to. I'm hoping we can scoot on over to Virginia Beach so our kids can see the Atlantic, but for myself? I would a million times rather go to Gulf Shores, Alabama, for my saltwater beach.

ETA: About the "mid-Atlantic" impression I got of VA--I think that really did have more to do with the people among whom I worked. They were very oriented toward the Eastern seaboard, even the one who was originally from California. They had no knowledge of the mid-South, and no interest in it, either. They knew about the Carolinas, Atlanta, and Florida, because those places were on the East Coast. But I got the impression most of them regarded my home area as benighted and uninteresting. When my husband and I got the chance to return to the Nashville area, where he and I had gone to school, and where he had grown up, I was very excited. And I distinctly recall one young man (an acquaintance from the theater group) asking me "Why?" in disbelief. It was obvious from his tone of voice that he thought Nashville was the red-neck capital of the universe, and he couldn't fathom why anyone with an education would want to be there.
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Re: Swedish Easter Wizard?

Postby Boogeyman » Fri May 16, 2014 6:57 am

Murf:

Isn't Staunton fairly close to D.C.? Northern Virginia might as well be part of D.C. with same attitudes and persectives. Many of the people that live in northern Virginia work in D.C. It is also one of the wealthiest areas of the country because of all the Washington money.
There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil to one who is striking at the root.

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Re: Swedish Easter Wizard?

Postby Murfreesboro » Fri May 16, 2014 7:11 am

Not that close, actually. I seem to recall it was about 150 miles away. I was actually closer to D.C. in Richmond. Staunton, at least when I lived there, was a little town of 20,000, surrounded by a rural area. It is about 30 miles north of Lexington, if memory serves, and 39 miles west of Charlottesville. But C-ville is across a mountain (Afton Mountain, I think), so you don't go there if the weather is bad.

The Shenandoah Valley was the original bread basket of the nation, and it is still primarily farmland. It is a rural area. There is a Museum of Frontier Culture which opened when we were there, and it has working farms showcasing the various immigrant groups who settled the valley in the 18th century. They even stock the heirloom breeds of animals that those settlers would have had back then. My husband taught in high schools while we were there, and the kids were always given an excused absence during hunting season.

Of course, teaching on a college faculty, I was definitely outnumbered in political discussions! :)
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Re: Swedish Easter Wizard?

Postby Kolchak » Mon May 19, 2014 4:27 pm

I'd like to think that by now, most of our regular readers know I like to joke around and if possible keep things light. We have so much garbage to deal with in our regular lives that we can stand to relax and take it easy once in a while.

Mau I don't think there were any good guys in the civil war, north or south. From the perspective of the south, it was seen as simply a matter of survival. With tariffs favoring the north and with industrial might just around the corner the south saw themselves as being pushed into a corner that would sooner or later destroy them.

If cooler heads in the south had prevailed, maybe they would have taken the time to make alliances with their friends in the north. Most newspapers in the north were opposed to war. Many northern politicians were against the war. But just as today we have a few special interest groups that try and push their agenda on the American people, such was the case in 1861. It would have been in the souths best interest to remain part of the USA while convening a new southern congress to discuss what should be done. By rushing headlong into a war the south did themselves no favors. While the average southern soldier was a better fighting man than the average northerner, it means little when you have no weapons or equipment, and you are outnumbered 2, 3 or 4 to 1.

By South Carolina jumping the gun, it was a disadvantage to the south, but a blessing to the north.

Plus, one thing you don't hear much about in modern classrooms is how when the south finally got around to starting a government, how fractured they were.

In the view of the south, each state was a sovereign country. That meant each state was its own country, and the bickering and fighting that went on within the southern congress was bad. It was tough enough in peacetime, but during war its amazing the south lasted as long as it did.

Here in Georgia there is the Andersonville Military Cemetary. It is today a cemetary for Union prisoners of war. During the war it housed Union prisoners of war.

Of the roughly 50,000 Union prisoners of war held there, approximately 13,000 died from disease and starvation.

The only execution of a Confederate officer after the war ended was that of the camps commandant, a Swiss immigrant named Henry Wirz. When he was executed he refused to see a priest because he said was not guilty of anything. Instead of fixing the rope to snap his neck for a quick kill, the executioner put the rope on in such a manner that it slowly strangled him to death. It took him about 5 minutes to die while Union soldiers chanted jeers at him.

That is what the text books will tell you. But the rest of the story is this. Early in the war prisoners on both sides were exchanged. It was how things had been done in European warfare for ages and was an accepted way of the day.

It wasn't until Union General US Grant took overall command that such practices ended. He knew that his side possessed numerical superiority and he could afford to lose more men than the south and still win. So his policy ended prisoner exchange for both sides. However; things had gotten so bad that by November of 1864 the south was returning northern prisoners of war without asking for anything in return. That's one little tidbit that you don't hear much about in school.

Another tidbit that is seldom if ever talked about is how the roughly 260,000+ Union prisoners taken by the Confederacy, 22,000+ died. That is roughly 8% of them died in captivity.

Of the roughly 220,000+ Confederate soldiers taken prisoner by the Union, 26,000+ died in Union captivity; roughly 13% died while held in the north.

The north with all its food and technical superiority allowed more southern prisoners to die than the south allowed northern prisoners to. The southern prisoners were intentionally starved, denied warm clothing in northern winters which few were accustomed to, but because the winners write the history books, you seldom get the whole story.

As to the depression, it would have affected a divided country. Both north and south would have been affected by world wide stock trading.

Baring any unforeseen problems, the south would have been aligned with Great Britain in any future wars. A young Winston Churchill even wrote a treatise where British troops join the Confederate forces at Gettysburg that turns the tide of battle for a Confederate victory.

It should be noted that German immigrants would have been the single largest ethnic group in the east and midwest by the turn of the century. It might have been a pro German faction in Washington had the south gotten its independence from the Union, by the time WWI rolled around.

Could we see the country break up again? I think we're already seeing it. We are allowing illegal aliens to come here and they are NOT doing the work we won't do. What they are doing is clogging up the medical, judicial and social services and are a major reason we are having the financial problems we are having.

15 years ago I was told that my Southern flag was a racist and divisive symbol. It wasn't but the special interest groups and hate mongers made sure that it was shown as such and with a very compliant news media going along with it.

Here in the south, we warned you and said Be Careful! The US flag is next and it was. Today in California, Texas and New Mexico and Colorado, kids are told that the American flag is offensive to the illegal Mexican students they share a classroom with and the Mexican flag should be flow instead of the US flag so as to be more inclusive and politically correct.

When will it end?

When we are no longer a country.
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Re: Swedish Easter Wizard?

Postby Kolchak » Mon May 19, 2014 9:05 pm

Pumpkin_Man wrote: The North East was settled long before the South was. In fact, the 13 original colonies is often referred to as New England.

Mike

Well Mike I hate to give you a history lesson, but you're wrong on two counts. The reason the orignal 13 colonies were called New England was because they were NEW English territories in the new world. Maryland and Virginia and North Carolina were called the upper south by the people who lived there. South Carolina and Georgia were called the lower south by the British who settled the area.

And last but not least the longest continuosly lived city in the United States is Saint Augstine Florida. 1565 to present. Whoops! I just saw where Murph already said that.....NEVERMIND! :lol: :lol:
Last edited by Kolchak on Mon May 19, 2014 10:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Swedish Easter Wizard?

Postby Kolchak » Mon May 19, 2014 9:48 pm

Murfreesboro wrote:Not that close, actually. I seem to recall it was about 150 miles away. I was actually closer to D.C. in Richmond. Staunton, at least when I lived there, was a little town of 20,000, surrounded by a rural area. It is about 30 miles north of Lexington, if memory serves, and 39 miles west of Charlottesville. But C-ville is across a mountain (Afton Mountain, I think), so you don't go there if the weather is bad.

The Shenandoah Valley was the original bread basket of the nation, and it is still primarily farmland. It is a rural area. There is a Museum of Frontier Culture which opened when we were there, and it has working farms showcasing the various immigrant groups who settled the valley in the 18th century. They even stock the heirloom breeds of animals that those settlers would have had back then. My husband taught in high schools while we were there, and the kids were always given an excused absence during hunting season.

Of course, teaching on a college faculty, I was definitely outnumbered in political discussions! :)

Making excuse for missing school during hunting season? What's wrong with that? :lol: 8)
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Re: Swedish Easter Wizard?

Postby Murfreesboro » Wed May 21, 2014 6:35 am

LOL Nothing's wrong with that. In fact, my husband loved it (not that he hunts, but he is with the hunters in spirit). I just mentioned that fact to point out the type of culture that prevails in that part of VA, or did when I lived there. Of course, my colleagues on the college faculty looked down on that culture, for the most part. Either that, or they just didn't "get" it.

Kolchak, you are one smart guy.
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Re: Swedish Easter Wizard?

Postby Kolchak » Thu May 22, 2014 6:01 pm

My wife would argue that with you! :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

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