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tv   [untitled]    February 25, 2012 6:30pm-7:00pm EST

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not, whether the lieutenant from new york had appraised jackson's merits properly, is a pretty subjective thing to judge. but that he thought that and that his comrades thought that was incredibly useful in the form of a self-fulfilling prophecy. they were expecting to be beaten by this fellow the next time. in june down here near richmond when they came down here, of course, a federal who was captured asked who someone riding by was. they said that's stonewall jackson. he said is that devil here? betraying the attitude. an indiana soldier, a hoosier, referred to jackson as a prince of bushwhackers, kind of enviously and has outgeneralled call of our commanders. a new yorker writing in the popular press in the north in
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june said, oh, that the union could find someone as dashing and plucky as this stonewall jackson. one of the favorite court-martials i have ever seen among the 88,000 was of a quartermaster named simms in the fall of 1862. simms was court-martialed for treason. what he had said was, stonewall jackson has whipped us every time we fight him. and for saying such an outrageous thing, he was found guilty. a pennsylvanian, june '62, i'm sorry to say i have frequently heard our men talk as though they believe jackson could not be whipped. in fact, he has to become what might be called a bugaboo. all of this, attitudes in the south and the north, where there had been no doubt of success in the north and not much hope for success in the south after henry and donaldson and all of the ,
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jackson what he was in 1862. so, while jackson's high ranking subordinates meanwhile underwent a parallel if not exactly the same metamorphosis, they had all thought, just about without exception, that he was dangerous, crazy, and so on. by the end of the valley campaign, there were some quarrelsome and contention individuals who still found nothing to admire in jackson. despite his late life bouquets that i mentioned, tolliver was tip kalg of the former category of officers but richard taylor and dick yewel might personify the others. dick and ilore, who you probably know was the brother-in-law of jefferson davis, very, very well
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connected fellow. son of the president of the united states some years earlier and the brother in law of the confederate states, very well connected. his prose descriptions of jackson are probably familiar to every one of you. he described the general color fully and vividly. it's really good to read. he compared jackson to wolf and nelson for, quote, his place in the hearts of english speaking peoples and so on. really admired jackson. but -- and this is an episode that is virtually unknown -- shows up in the memoirs of chief of dick taylor's staff. during the opening phases of the valley campaign, when taylor first came into contact with jackson, he was so unmanned by what appeared to be jackson's ineptitude that he took leave, got on his horse, climbed over the mountain, through piedmont, virginia, came to richmond and talked to his brother-in-law, the president, and said, you've got to get rid of jackson, he's going to lose our cause in the valley. so there's quite a revolution. quite a mem morph sister for
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dick taylor. as a footnote, and i lore came away thinking he had convinced jefferson davis about this, and that davis was considering sending james longstreet to replace jackin that of course didn't happen. if it had, longstreet would still be approaching winchester from the south slowly today, i'm pretty sure. dick yewell, almost unbelievably excentric, he called on the 13th of may, after mcdowell but ten days before the onfall against front royal, he called him that enthusiastic fanatic in a letter. and he said our army has no head at all, though there is room for one or two. he called him that may speaking to another confederate officer as crazy as a march hair, a crazy man. when he received orders he didn't like from jackson, he said in front of his staff that
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this is damn foolishness. his road to damascus experience was actually on the road to port republic in this instance, and he called aside tom munnford, the colonel from lynchburg who was the man he talked to before. he called him aside and said, do you remember when i called jackson an old woman? well, i take it all back. he had been converted. charles s. winder, on the other hand, jackson's very able commander, he suited jackson perfectly well. he had a stern world view. he believed in discipline. he was hard-nosed. jackson liked winder. winder did not like jackson and winder's diary which has never been published except occasional snippets, he was on june the 5th, three days before cross ki's, campaign almost over, he wrote in his diary, jackson is
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insane. that's directly from charles winder. two days later -- disgusted with jackson. on the 8th -- requesting to leave his command. he never got away. he died in battle exactly two months to the day after that last entry. dick garnett is the most famous of the officers who jackson threw into arrest. unjustly it seemed to me, a letter that's never been published by dr. freeman, whose name you all know, i'm sure. as he was writing his classic -- responded to a request from someone in a private letter, i never could understand why jackson persecuted dick garnet. even after the triumphant climax of the valley campaign, not all of the officers in close proximity were sure that jackson
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really had been skimfllful rath than lucky. a conclave of four of them agreed unanimously, one of them wrote, that jackson could not continue to take such risks without at some time meeting with a great disaster. foot soldiers by this time had none of those reservations whatsoever at all. colonel sam folkerson who had signed at the top of the mutinous, out of channel communications to the secretary of war, probably went through something of a metamorphosis, but his letter written home at the time is subject to interpretation. listen to what he said. five days after port republic where he had played a key role, particularly the day before there in the village of port republic, he admitted that the
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privates of the whole army has the most unbounded confidence in jackson. you notice he didn't say, "we all" do. he said the privates. is that on purpose? is he saying the men all love him, but i'm not so sure. that's what he said. he was killed 13 days after he wrote that letter so we have no further evidence. the jackson legend that was crafted during a few weeks during that spring of 1862, 33 days, if you will, was far too strong to be unhorsed by the general's costly failures right here around richmond during the seven days campaign. the end of june to the first of july in 1862. in the aftermath of that performance, the only one in jackson's career that was a failure by any gauge, it just absolutely was, popular opinion was inclined to blame lee for a lack of complete success in corralling mcclellan's army, defeating it more thoroughly, capturing more of it, and none
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of the public press, none of the public, blamed jackson. and in fact exactly the reverse was the case. every once in a while the newspapers get it wrong. or they did then. i guess now they have it all straightened out. this entirely unfair judgment survived in the minds of the public right along. and to the degree that jackson did good in the valley, it was in part as a manifestation of this business i've mentioned to you about the impact on men's minds. his failure during the campaign seemed surely to be the result of stress fatigue or some diminution of his vital source because he had overused himself. i have an extensive chapter looking just at what happened to jackson and why during that week in the richmond essays book
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entieltded "sleepless in the saddle" because i think that probably was the root of the problem. but northerners facing up against jackson's corps were terrified when they heard that mighty stonewall had shown up. one of my favorite quotes from that week comes from a vermont fellow who's in the first united states sharpshooters. writing at the time, he talked about how when they found that jackson was there, it was unsettling. he wrote, the dreaded form of stonewall jackson seemed to lurk in every bush. well, if jackson was lurking in a bush during the seven days, it was probably to sleep when he should have been doing something else. but the fact that people were terrified of him is pretty significant. the utterly unknown military school professor by the time of his death had become the great dread of the yankees. that's a quote from one of the
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confederates. the legend continued to expand after his death. i have been shackled with the injunction that i'm not to talk about anything that happened after 1862. your window of discussion is 1862. but evidence of jackson's impact upon the psyche north and south comes from a wonderful court-martial in atchison kansas in 1864 after jackson was long dead. i was delighted and amused when i found this. a citizen named a.r. earl ran a little store in atchison, kansas, which wasn't much of a village then, probably isn't now, in the summer of 1864, a court-martial tried him for treason. under the constitution, there's no way a military tribunal could
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try him. there was no martial law enforced but they were pretty much ignoring the constitution at that point. they tried him and they convicted him and his crime was he had been offering for sale stonewall jackson. this was the book which they introduced in evidence was the john easton cook biography, although his name wasn't on it. it was the pirated copy published in new york city. it had been copyrighted under the laws promulgated by the united states under the district court for new york or whatever the appropriate one was. so it was completely legal, certified by the government, but none of this mattered to the earnest protectors of kansasiin virtue, and he was convicted for treason. what a delicious, delicate, oblique tribute on jackson's impact on the public mind a year and a half after his death. northerners of less frenzied
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temperament openly admired their dead enemy. herman melville who was anything but a southern sympathizer if you've read his writing the war as well as the big whale, he wrote two poems aimed primarily at jackson and lauded jackson. in one he declared that though relentlessly he routed us, we drop a tear on the bold virginian's beer. the other melville poem hymned jackson's soul and marvelled how his sword with hunger was closed. some vindictive northern journals attacked melville as a traitor, although he certainly was very ardently pro union. and even in such an unadulterated northern venue as vermont, newspapers printed complimentary notices about his death. not a little bit teems with
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relief he was no longer a foe. the same new yorker who i quoted to you 20 or so minutes ago who in june of 1862 had written home, no one in our army is fit to compete with him, he admitted on jackson's death, i do not feel like exalting over the grave of such a brave, wise and energetic antagonist. northerners of that mean saw to the posting of sentinels over jackson's grave in lexington. the degree to which southerners mourned jackson at his death is well-known to all of you. entirely typical reaction was to blame the country's loss on a dower and very longful god, ee keeping with the spirit of the times. a leading southerner cleric, you've probably heard this one, suggested just within days after jackson died that the news
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actually was good obviously. god clearly was on their side all along and he now evidently has charged himself rather than jackson with the care and protection of the struggling republic. a north carolinian, i have some north carolina friends here, charles an and stanley, every once in a while you find a literate carolinian. this fellow writing home to his family, said the army loved him and sort of in the same vein as the cleric, i believe he was taken away to learn us not to depend upon the arm of flesh. a punishment for being too much admired in the south. a similarly piased virginian reached the blissful conclusion in a letter of mid-may of '63 that it is all for the best. but he could not help in the very same letter admitting in a little bit less relentlessly optimistic view, i almost feel like we are without a general now.
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the few southerners who were still not impressed by jackson, even after his valley triumphs, even after his death, were primarily motivated, it seems to me, by jealousy. general joe johnston who had more than ample reason for jealousy of almost everyone, and no real credentials for pontification, he insisted that jackson was not a mill carry genius but rather simply possessed with sublime these yaya -- enthusive sam. he did have sublime enthusiasm, but perhaps more than johnston was willing to admit. a woman made the mistake of speaking glowingly about stonewell jackson in front of one of general james longstreet's staff, osmond latrobe. latrobe she wrote was greatly
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piqued by such good words about jackson and said that it, quote, detracted from longstreet's fame. certainly sounds like jealousy to me. and latrobe, who was a mild mannered fellow, surprised her. she added, i was very much taken a back that such a quiet self possessed individual should have been startled out of his usual equanimity thus. longstreet himself of course spent three decades after the death pointed out their defects and awkwardly trying to assail their reputations. the emergence of fool tom jackson as he was known at the vmi from his chris alist into the mighty general of the valley grew expressly from those few days in 1862. southern newspapers riley admitted their conversion experiences. they had been making fun of jackson. they had been highlighting his eccentricities.
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they had been sweeking speaki i divisively of him. the richmond daily whig has been explaining how the war should have been run in their view, they knew how to run it in the valley and everywhere else, they had made a lot of fun of jackson and his eccentricities. they had the good grace to spoof their earlier stance with a lengthy faux wanted circular. a liberal reward will be given for the apprehension of a confirmed lunatic stonewall who escaped from the asylum early in the spring. a nice metaphor for what was going on. he thinks he's an officer in the confederate army. when last heard from, he was offering personal indignity to an aged and feeble ex-senator of the united states. he is reported to have misdirected an imbecile cobbler.
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all of this alluding to banks and fremont and the rest and so on. the entire efforts of the united and confederate states governments have failed to arrest him. the georgia newspaper had been doing harm to jackson early, but they came around. they similarly reversed field and acknowledged that they had been wrong. jackson's recent victories give us a vertigo of delight, the georgia paper said. we hope he will keep on and give us an apoplexy before he stops. so this quite lunatic tomfool jackson had become mighty stonewall just about overnight. or over 33 nights. his new stature made him a pseudo purveyor of soap and it
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made him the strong right arm for a period of time for the southern to come over and facilitate the siege of the seven days of richmond and changed the whole complex of war. that is why it seems to me he might well deserve attention as the man of 1862. we have by design ten minutes for questions and answers. i guess professor rawles is going to moderate those. >> the professor is going to change the -- the way we're going to do it a bit. you're going to come down here and sit so that the tv audience can be seeing you better. the first of public q and a and then he's going to come down here. okay, got it. first the public q and a. and we will have stationary misk
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on either side. if you have a question, go to one of the mics on either side so the tv audience can hear. you public q and a bob. >> i'm hoping stanley or charles will rise to the defense of tar heels everywhere. i'm an honorary north karenian of the more ravian bishop of north carolina got the governor to sign a patriotic comrags. i do not have plastic flamingos on my front yard but otherwise i've bought into it. i really having. >> yes, sir. >> just assume if someone were to nominate robert e. lee later in the day, assume that's a possibility, because we're not having a panel discussion at the end that will give you all a chance to diseach other's candidate, what would you say to someone who unanimitied, why would the audience, why should the audience vote for stonewall
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jackson instead of lee? >> i col hardly shriek with horror at the notion that lee is the man for 1862 but the question of when in southern consciousness the track of the two y axis crossed is something i've long debated with gary gallagher in forums like this. he's enclined to think that lee became the man in the south in perception. well before jackson's death. i'm not so sure of that. but lee's rise to prominence was appreciably later than jackson's. that's unquestioned whether it was late in 1862 or not, none one. number two, lee's rise to provenance was in considerable degree facilitated by jackson's success allowing the seven days to unfold. so you can pay your money and take your choice with that. general? >> bob, you have shared with us actually a treasure trove of
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comments about the man, your nominee. i wonder if you could comment just a bit on what tom fool jackson himself had to say during this period. have you had a chance to look at his exclamations? his short letters to anna, his thoughts about why he was having so much success against so many enemies in that 33 days? >>. >> he the quep is an apt one and the answer is tied deeply to his unbelievably deep religious person. it's difficult for me, i suppose for a lot of modern people even if you are religious today to look back to an era in which the attitudes particularly of conservative folks, and he was of course, a predestinnarian, he
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genuinely believed that he was god's instrument on earth. to a greater degree i suspect an that even deeply religious people today do. and it struck me when i first read it 40 or 50 years ago at first as being a little bit disingenuous the degree to which maryanna would write and say you're all over the newspapers. you're famous. and he would write back and say, it's not me at all. it's god. i'm just his instrument. the certainty that he actually believed that in every fiber of his being is just about unavoidable if you read all of his correspondent. there's a great deal of it. anything anyone tells you today, good news is you don't have to believe me, them, you don't have to believe us, all of this material is available. it's not like the french and indian war in which i worked briefly where there are six accounts of the battle of fort
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necessity. you can jackson on this to your heart's content and come to grips with it. i'll be surprised if when you're done, you do not believe his attitude toward all of this had nothing to do at all with him, he was merely the vessel through which god was doing things for his chosen people of the confederate states of america. >> while the rest of you contemplate something further, let me make an appeal that i always do when i get on my hind legs in front of people, even people who are not the friends of civil war preservation that you all ought to be. to support the preservation efforts that we're all involved in, the civil war trust in washington, the central battlefields trust in fredericksburg, richmond battlefields association whose president is here today, i saw him smiling sam craig back there, are all striving in the last decade that we have in the main theater supposed to
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bentonville, north carolina or maybe down no far southwestern, virginia, before development overwhelms it to save the battlefields. many of you are ardent supporters of that. mary roy edwards has always supported all of these. i sometimes am surprised by the degree to which civil war historians who made it their life's work don't support the battlefields. jim mcpherson sitting back there, i see him and his wife sitting measurement to him has always supported the civil war trust, the central vap battlefields trust. i see him all the time on the printouts. he deserves credit for that. i can't get shrill with those of you who are battlefield oriented. of political figures like you will hear about, heard about last year and lincoln was the man of the year, the publication of their papers deserves support, physician counsel and otherwise. the preservation of their houses
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deserves preservation but most especially the battlefield. you folks need to us. a lot of you do, more of you should. there's my sermon. not a predestination sermon. we've got to work at it or it's not going to happen. anyone else? walter? >> bob -- >> got to go to the microphone or you'll make the media folks unhappy and that's a bad thing. >> a little later in 1862, stonewall performed at sharpsburg. when did his difficulties with a.p. hill arise? >> well, the jackson had a good bit of difficult with everyone who was subordinate to him virtually without exception. one of the -- the question i've been asked second most often in
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my speaking endeavors, first is what if jackson had been at gettysburg needless to say, why did the southern confederacy struggling with no leadership of any quality in the western theater, why did they never send jackson there or contrairely send lee there and leave jackson in charge here. and i in that parallel universe, i have very little doubt that jackson would have been a complete failure at the head of an arm because he could not get along with his subordinates. his world view was so thenarrowe could not get along. with legal to shield the sub order flats from him and jackson got away with being a grumpy person as i an corps commander. by himself, he would have had the command of the army of tennessee in irons. maybe that won't have been a bad thing from what i know of the army of tennessee but he was not
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cut out for that. but hill is the example of that. and the problem bebegan on the two days before the bat of cedar mountain. there's a good book that will explain that to you. but it began there where hill had misunderstood some orders which jackson had not been as skillful as he should have been in liming for him and outlining for him. on the other hand, hill just stood by, was not what you expect from a modern major general so jackson went to war with him. it got worse on the parch to manassas with discipline burning rails and jackson said to maxie gregging that few understand the importance of so layerity in war. that was probably the root of ha in both cases. it's not widely known, walter, today that jackson and hill had a relationship of some sort near the end of their lives.


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