About Brooks D. Simpson

American historian.

Secession in the News

By now we all know that Great Britain has remained Great Britain and the United Kingdom has remained the United Kingdom, instead of becoming somewhat not-so-Great Britain and less-than-United Kingdom. But what about the United States? Well, look here.

Coming to you from the hotbed of secessionist sentiment … those southeasterners can’t even match Idaho unless they embrace the margin of error. :)

Another Defense of George McClellan

This defense of George B. McClellan (which consists  of many links and a little commentary) is offered in typical style by its author, who should be familiar to some readers of this blog.

I found most amusing the following claim:

McClellan was the Democratic Party’s presidential nominee in the 1864 election. Incredibly, despite all the advantages that Lincoln enjoyed, McClellan received 45 percent of the vote. If Southern citizens had participated in the election, McClellan almost certainly would have won the popular vote.

If southern civilians had voted in 1864, then there would have been no war going on … and McClellan would not have secured the nomination. Indeed, although McClellan was not in favor of the Lincoln administration’s policy on slavery and emancipation, he wanted slavery to end (saying that McClellan was proslavery would indeed be a smear). The chances of a majority of southern voters supporting a candidate in the middle of the nineteenth century who opposed slavery in the slightest? Zero.

Note, however, the careful use of the word “citizens.” The writer clearly wants to keep black people away from the ballot box in his counterfactual fantasy.

Rarely have I seen such a bizarre leap in logic, but there you are. McClellan deserves far better than this.

Fantasy Football and Player Behavior

Yes, I promised you … “and stuff.” This fits under that category. Three scholars (two of them are my colleagues at Barrett, The Honors College at ASU) discuss how people who play fantasy football select players with issues of player behavior in mind.

There is a connection here, of course. Some people worship Nathan Bedford Forrest for his skills as a battlefield commander. Some of them are at pains to deny his role in other activities.

Flaggers Turn Out in Force at Lexington

This past week thousands hundreds dozens five Virginia Flaggers turned up at Washington and Lee University to protest the university’s new policy concerning the display of the Confederate flag at Lee Chapel.

VF WLU 0914 1

They were outnumbered by the flags they displayed.

vf wlu 0914 3

They engaged passers-by, changing hearts and minds.

vf wlu 0914 4The media coverage of the event was all one could wish for. Flagger spokesperson Barry Isenhour, who is to red shorts what Susan Hathaway is to red blouses and dresses, shared his insights about the Lost Cause.

vf wlu 914 2

The following day Hathaway herself took time off from her non-appearances on the sidewalk by the VMFA to operate a booth by a reenactment. You can see how busy she was. There was also a Karen Cooper sighting, but people were disappointed to learn that surfer dude Grayson Jennings and Norwood “Tripp” “Shades” Lewis were nowhere to be seen. Their presence would have made at least a dozen Flaggers over several days.

No word on whether the Flagger bookstand sells copies of Connie’s Chastain’s latest dust jacket covers. The good news? This time there are more Flaggers than flags in the picture, which is an increasingly rare thing.

Somehow I don’t think this massive turnout will be enough to persuade anyone at Washington and Lee to change current policy. As to why Hathaway absents herself from sidewalk flagging, there’s been no explanation. Unfortunately for her there are no pictures of her outside of WLU for years past to recycle.

We have been assured that this spectacle will be repeated several times during the remainder of the fall semester at WLU. We wonder whether the results will be any different.

Are you angry enough yet? I’m sure the Flaggers are. As for the rest of us …



Another Confederate Heritage Advocate Shrugs Off Violence

From the SPLC’s article on the League of the South’s violent rhetoric:

This isn’t the first time the League has flirted with southern nationalists with a calloused trigger finger, however. Michael Tubbs, a former Green Beret and demolitions expert, and another soldier robbed two fellow soldiers of their M-16 rifles at Fort Bragg, N.C. “This is for the KKK,” the holdup men shouted as they fled. Tubbs pleaded guilty to theft of government property and conspiracy to transport guns and explosives across state lines after prosecutors later discovered a weapons cache.

Tubbs is now Hill’s chief of staff.

Reaction from one of the usual suspects:

(So? And gunrunner Eric Holder is Obama’s Attorney General. Tubbs served his time, did he not?)

Sweet southern boys, indeed.

In related news … guess who’s back in the good graces of the league of the South?


Matthew Heimbach, (former?) Virginia Flagger.

Quote(s) of the Week, September 7-13, 2014

It’s so hard to choose sometimes …

Want to know about slavery?

Slavery, was not my idea, was it yours, I did not own any,did any of you, I bet you cannot locate one single living person in America that owned a black slave, call me if you can. Oh, in my early life I kinda thought a couple of times they were talking about me, as I was working like a slave, but no, I was wrong, just some of my old memories were apparently coming through.

Yeah, we have the Eagles, Giants, Saints, what bout dem Mississippi Slaves, dem boys is good, score 47 points on dat dare field. Or , oh no, Redskins, how can you call them players R-E-D-S-K-I-N-S, we can call them, Panthers, or Bears, or Seahawks, or Dolphins, or Colts, or Indians, or RFeds, or sumpen, but not Redskins. BULLSHIT, LET’S CALL IT THAT.

Folks, have you heard about the illegal Immigration issues, and by the way, Obama says not to call the terroists, call them foreign combatants, u know wat I mean, just pretend along with me, use modern feel good names as we do not want to bomb ISIS unless we get an invitation. Yes, I suppose them invitations to come over and bomb the combatants is not a Hallmark Card is it.

Listen, modern day Morons and Morenesties, wake up, slavery was a biblical issue long before Starbucks was founded. Yeah, before Aunt Jemima pancakes, the plantations, and all that stuff, their was slavery. Before Dixie, and Cotton, Rice and Jambalaya, their were slaves. before America their were slaves. Eqypians, Greeks, Romans, Indians, Japaneses, Chinese, Pre Columbian civilizations all had slaves. AMERICA DID NOT INVENT THIS.

Good to know.

And then there was this:

The South seceded for many different reasons, slavery was part and parcel , but by no means No.1, I could also say, Southern women were a reason, or Southern Children, Or Southern Trees and flowers, or Southern farms, or Southern Rivers, or Southern Lakes, Pecans, Peaches, Palm trees, all are some of the reasons.

Pray tell.

Want a list? Here’s your list:

Place your weight on each as you see fit, or add more reasons, but this was a complex issue, NOT A SINGULAR ISSUE.
* Independence from the Federal Central government which Southerners generally felt were biased in their dealings with the Southern states.
Most Southerners believed in pro-states rights, that each state was an independent nation, free to print it’s own money, run it’s government, make it’s own
laws, and basically be an independent nation exempt from outside interference. Lincoln was the last straw to many who wanted the state to be left alone and
now felt threatened more than ever by the noose that the federal government under Lincoln was likely to place around their necks.
* Independence from the Northern people who were at odds culturally with the Southern people in almost every way.
* Independence from Federal Tariffs and taxes.
* A belief that the lives of Southerners would be further controlled and harmed negatively after Lincoln was elected.
* A belief that life and commerce in the South would benefit from not having Northern interference or control.
* A fear of free black men running loose across the South and raping, looting and murdering whites, if a law was passed allowing an instant release of the
* A feeling of economic harm to many portions of the Southern agricultural business if slaves were freed.
* A dislike of the North in many ways, one primary reason was a perception of an anti-Christian attitude and lifestyle of Northern people in general,
and this feeling is relative and exists today.
* As many independent reasons and thoughts as man can perceive or consider. The very idea of getting out from under the central government had been
discussed, talked about, proposed, discussed and considered since the nations founding 80m plus years previous. It was not a new idea, Lincoln was the
newest fear, and the likely hood is, had the secession not had happened, Lincoln would not have freed the slaves, although I do suspect it would have
eventually happened piecemeal as a result of efficiency and economics with new technology being introduced that would have made slavery obsolete.


Seems to me that a lot of those reasons in the end are reduced to saying that white southerners who favored secession did so because they wanted to protect slavery and feared the consequences of emancipation. After all, even the issue of the tariff reminds us that the plantation economy, which relied on exports, was made possible by slavery … and so white southerners wanted a national policy that favored its regional economic interest.

Somebody’s Upset

I thought I’d share with you this tale of woe concerning the Museum of The Confederacy and the Confederate White House:

THE LEADERS AT THE MOC have for a few years refused to fly the confederate battle flag out front of the new museum building that sits next door and beside the old White House. The leaders have slowly, year by year infiltrated this institution, just as foreigners have filtered into America and are changing our customs and traditions and destroying America, these people are destroying the MOC. For several years a move has been underfoot where many in the black community have pushed for slave stories, and slave museums, and I am fine with it, with their money, time to do as they please, but leave our Confederate Museum alone. Not to be. You see, infiltrators, work within, they sneak in with false pretenses, get control and change things to suit their objectives. Another TROJAN HORSE. They first worked with the Black city mayor and council. and other Black anti Confederate groups, to take control, and as they have the museum is changing to a more Political Correct place, or simply put, screw the CSA we are turning the place into a political correct center, where we can bash the CSA AND ALL IT STOOD FOR BEFORE THEY ARE FINISHED AND ERASED. And just like every other thing they are put in charge of, it gets corrupted, defaced, lost and destroyed in a few short years, just as the MOC will.

Quite a snapshot of how someone thinks, no?

It appears a merger is happening between the MOC and the Richmond Civil War Center at the old Tredegar museum location, a Liberal controlled place to water down and destroy our past. This is rotten to the core and it makes med mad. Our nation is under siege, I for one, would avail myself into a group of Americans who want to take back control of our nation, but I am afraid I have waited too late as few agree with me it seems, and for this I am sad but determined to stay the course as things can change and I want to be a part of the change back to our traditional America, and our Southern heritage and culture being re-instated.

Oh my indeed.

The Washington Post Does It Again

It gave a forum to none other than Brag Bowling … again.

Absentee ballots
Memorandum Aug. 23, 1864, from Abraham Lincoln to his Cabinet in a sealed envelope to be opened only after the November election:

“This morning, as for some days past, it seems exceedingly probable that this administration will not be re-elected. Then it will be my duty to so cooperate with the President-elect as to save the Union between the election and the inauguration; so he will have secured his election on such grounds that he cannot save it afterwards.”

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Lincoln was simply reading the tea leaves. Four years of horrific fighting with massive casualties, high living costs, opposition to the Emancipation Proclamation, continuation of the draft and opposition to his political and unconstitutional policies (such as the denial of the writ of habeas corpus, mass arrests and closure of opposition newspapers) had left his popularity at low ebb. Tactical losses from the Wilderness to Petersburg produced 65,000 casualties. The unpopular war seemed no closer to ending than in 1861.

George McClellan was considered a formidable challenger whose party’s platform included ending the war and Confederate independence, although McClellan rejected that part in his letter accepting the nomination.

The mid-term 1862 elections proved disastrous to the Republican Party with congressional losses in New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, New Jersey, Indiana and Lincoln’s home state of Illinois.

Lincoln had significant opposition in the Republican Party. The Radical Republicans doubted Lincoln’s fervor to end slavery and thought his Reconstruction plan was not punitive enough to the South.

Prospects brightened greatly with victories in Mobile Bay, the Shenandoah Valley and Atlanta on Sept. 6, 1864. Still, a November victory was uncertain. What could he do to guarantee a victory?

The answer lay in the novel use of absentee ballots. Letting American troops vote absentee while in the field had not been done before. Lincoln banked on the hope that the soldiers would support him and continue with the war to validate their sacrifices. Many thought this could lead to corruption. Blank absentee ballots showed up throughout the army. Whole regiments were given furloughs to return home and vote. Lincoln took it a step further. In many polling precincts, armed Union troops intimidated voters. His electoral victory in New York has been credited to the menacing presence of soldiers. Accusations of voter fraud were made in nearly every state. Lincoln was reelected on Nov. 8, 1864. As he hoped, the army ballots proved decisive. The horrific war and subsequent Reconstruction would proceed as Lincoln planned.

Congratulatory letters poured in. Two of note came from European supporter Karl Marx writing on behalf of the International Working Men’s Association.

By the way, Mr. Bowling is the director of the Stephen D. Lee Institute, an educational group established by the Sons of Confederate Veterans. Really.

Speaking of Threats of Violence (continued) …

Here’s a picture of Michael Hill, President of the League of the South, with Pat Hines, who is vice-chairman for the league’s South Carolina chapter.
Hill and Hines
Yes, that Pat Hines … the one who apparently advocated the murder of schoolchildren.

Of course, Connie Chastain didn’t take that threat seriously, either. She never doesunless it will help her sell books.

Are you angry enough yet?

At least Ben Jones and the SCV can no longer say they haven’t heard or read about this. Will they say that Hill, Hines, and company are simply using their First Amendment rights?