The Tussle at Olustee Continues

On December 2 the Florida Department of Environmental Protection held a hearing to canvas opinions on a recent proposal to erect a monument to United States soldiers who fought at Olustee, Florida, in February 1864. The SCV represented itself in fine style at the meeting. So did that black Confederate for hire, H. K. Edgerton. “There is no place in the south land of America to memorialize Yankee soldiers,” declared our favorite hero. “This is an army that came here raping, robbing, stealing, killing and murdering our people. The kinds of things that happened here under the sanction of Abraham Lincoln were for these men to commit total warfare against innocent men, women and children who could not defend themselves.”

My, my, Mr. Edgerton, I wonder why you don’t see slavery in quite the same way … or was it okay for “your” folks of the south land to rape, rob, steal, kill, and murder innocent men, women, and children as part of slavery? Guess you don’t mind that.

Then again, a commenter to a news article, one Julius B. Casey, declared: “The ‘Damn Yankees’ should be taken to Olustee & shot!” Ah, southern hospitality.

Some people understandably don’t quite agree with the rather dishonest description of the main Olustee monument as honoring both sides. Nor is everyone pleased with the behavior of some members of state representative Dennis Buxley, who sides with the SCV on the issue. After all, as one member of the Sons of Union Veterans pointed out, United States soldiers died at Olustee, too … including a good number of African Americans, who wore the blue uniform Mr. Edgerton shuns.

An opponent of the monument does not comprehend the irony inherent in his comment that a monument “disturbs the ground where American Veterans sacrificed their lives doing their duty, and they deserve the field where they fell, to be quiet now.” Are we now claiming that United States soldiers are not American soldiers?

Doubtless this story will attract more attention … and the behavior of some of the people who oppose the erection of a monument to honor the service and sacrifice of United States soldiers reminds us that it’s heritage, not history, and that for some it remains a heritage of hate. Think about that this weekend, when we remember the sacrifices made by other members of the United States armed forces at Pearl Harbor.

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9 thoughts on “The Tussle at Olustee Continues

  1. There was no shortage of rebel atrocities during the war in the south,”I reported myself to the general commanding, who wished me to lie over night, fearing another attack in the, morning. In the morning the cavalry marched trough to Goodrich’s Landing, seeing no enemy, but noticing the effects of what had been the day before, the enemy having gone. Major Farnan, commanding the Cavalry, reports that the scenes witnessed by him in marching from Lake Providence to Goodrich’s Landing were a character never before in a civilized country, and the rebel atrocities committed the day before were such as the pen fails to record in proper language. They spared neither age, sex, nor condition. In some instances the negroes were shut up in their quarters. And literally roasted alive. The charred remains found in numerous instances testified to a degree of fiendish atrocity such as has no parallel either in civilized or savage warfare. Young children, only fire or six years of age, were found skulking in the canebrake pierced with wounds, while helpless women were found shot down in the most inhuman manner. The whole country was destroyed, and every sign of civilization.”
    SAMUEL J. NASMITH,
    Lieutenant Colonel Twenty-FIFTH Wisconsin Infantry
    http://ehistory.osu.edu/osu/sources/recordview.cfm?content=/037/0517

  2. The conduct of the anti-Union monument people reminds me of the conduct of those that spit on and denigrated our Vietnam Veterans not so long ago.
    The SCV has become a un-American,unpatriotic organization that should be considered hostile to our nation.If this Union monument is not allowed on Florida state ground,every rebel monument on federal properties should be removed.

  3. No surprise here. In 1994, the same ilk gave an honorable burial to the remains of Lewis T. Powell aka Paine. He may have served in the Confederate army, but he gave up his soldiers’ honor by stabbing a defenseless man in his sickbed.

  4. There is no reason for any monument, in honor of Yankee soldiers/sailors, to be placed in the former Confederacy, where they abused and murdered thousands of innocent Confederate civilians. Such an act would be an insult to those families who suffered at the hands of the Yankees. As for the treatment of slaves, the Yankee myth-maker has been working overtime to try to gloss-over the mistreatment of blacks by Northerners, by attempting to claim that Southerners abused blacks. It won’t work, because people are slowly coming to the realization that the majority of slaves were well-treated, while the majority of blacks living in the North have been mistreated.

  5. This is yet another confirmation that the worst possible advertisement for the Confederate “heritage” movement is its adherents.

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