|Texas Defender wrote:
While I am in general agreement with your apparent theme that it was mainly economic issues that determined where, when, and how slavery in America was practiced, I have a problem with some of the statements that you have made here.
First you stated that General Grant didn't: "Free his slaves" until the 13th Amendment was ratified in December of 1865. Actually, Grant only owned one slave in his entire life, one William Jones. Grant freed Jones in March of 1859, in spite of the fact that he could have used the money that he could have gotten by selling him.
It was Julia Dent Grant's parents, Colonel Frederick Tracy Dent, and his wife, Ellen Wrenshall who were pro-slavery and owned slaves. Colonel Dent made some of his slaves available to Julia as servants, but they weren't owned by Grant himself. Grant's parents were anti-slavery.
I'd be interested to know what slave ship you believe was arriving at Charleston in December of 1860. As far as I know, the last ship that actually brought slaves in was the CLOTILDE, which arrived in Mobile Bay in 1859. Perhaps you are referring to the WANDERER, which was owned by Charles Lamar of Savannah. It was captured with a load of slaves in 1858 and sold in Charleston in 1859 (back to Lamar).
You might be referring to the slave ship ERIE which was captured in August of 1860 attempting to bring in about 900 slaves. The captain, Nathaniel Gordon of Maine, was convicted of violating the US Piracy Act of 1820. He was hung in New York City in February of 1862.
As for the song: "Dixie," it is credited to Daniel Decatur Emmett, and thought to have been written in New York City in 1859. However, that claim has been challenged and he might have collaborated with others such as the Snowden family of Ohio, or perhaps some others in New York City. Most likely we will never know, but it was Emmett who copyrighted it.
As for the: "Battle Hymn of the Republic," by Julia Ward Howe, that came from the song: "John Brown's Body." The origin of that tune is also a bit uncertain. It is thought to have come out of the camp meeting movement of the early 19th century. That was a Protestant Christian religious movement in which people would come from far and wide to a meeting place to camp, listen to preachers, pray, and sing.
The "Glory Hallelujah" refrain is thought to have been originated in 1856 by one William Steffe of South Carolina. The: "John Brown" part could have originated during the war with a Boston regiment, and while originally about the abolitionist, could have been directed in jest at a member of the regiment of the same name.
All of this aside, what disturbs me is the bitter invective that you aim at Mark for simply suggesting that the lyrics of the two songs refer to slavery. Well, to those of that time, :"Southern rights" included the right to perpetuate the institution of slavery. Slaves were considered to be chattel property that their owners had the right to dispose of.
What I think is your main objective is to dispute the notion that the reason the war was fought was simply to perpetuate slavery. Obviously, most southerners see the issue as being much more complex than that. The issue, as I view it, was how much authority the federal government could exercise over the states and the people. To most southerners, the federal government by 1860 had infringed on the rights of the states and the people under the 9th and the 10th Amendments to the Constitution. The southerners saw it as being their right to leave the Union that the states had voluntarily entered into. Obviously, most of the northerners had a different view, and the disagreement was settled at the point of a bayonet.
Personally, I do not see where Mark has committed some grave offense by giving his opinion about the lyrics of the songs :"Dixie" and: "Bonnie Blue Flag". You hurl the epithet: "You northern people" at him, but I don't see where he has identified himself as being from the north. I don't know where he is from, or what his views on the causes of the war are. But I see no justification for your bitter attack implying that he : "Doesn't know very much," and should: "Shut his mouth." I don't see where he is trying to: "Shove it down your throat." Perhaps you should cool down and reconsider just who it is who might be: "Making a complete fool" of himself.
Once again, a well reasoned and articulate post. I concur in your sentiments. You and I are both proud southerners and like you, I really dislike reading posts with so much venom, especially from a new poster.