CIVIL WAR MEMORY
The Online Home of Kevin M. Levin
I invoke your name at the very end of my post yesterday:
Your toy soldier looks like he’s consumed too much Deep Spring Whiskey.
I knew this image looked familiar. My parents have this exact “Deep Spring Whiskey” sign (vintage, tin, great condition) displayed in their kitchen. Ironically, of course. I believe they also have coffee mugs in the shape of Lee’s head.
My son’s great aunt has a metal tin 11×16 exactly like it
This must be where your interest in the Lost Cause stems from.
This image appears on the cover of Will Kaufman’s 2006 book, *The Civil War in American Culture*. Inside, Kaufman writes that “Deep Spring” was marketed between 1903 and 1915 by the J. W. Kelly Company of Chattanooga.
Hey Craig, — And that is just where I discovered it while working in Alderman Library.
This is something I’ve never quite understood. Supposedly, consuming too much alcohol was not becoming of a Confederate veteran since it didn’t portray a picture of the honorable Confederate. (I think this is probably true but blown a little out of proportion, not as big of a deal as we think.) Yet, I’m constantly seeing things like this.
In fact, next to the battle flag t-shirts depicting half-naked women and guns, the item I hate the most are the Confederate leader decanters. A friend was once accused of being “disrespectful” for switching the heads on Jackson, Lee, & Davis decanters. I’m sorry, but I consider it even more disrespectful to make a whiskey decanter in the likeness of someone who made it a point not to drink. Knowing what I know about Davis & Lee I don’t think they’d be too happy about it either, not so much because of the alcohol but just because of the general idea of it. I just don’t get it. One minute you’re hearing about how much of a Christian Jackson & Lee were and the next minute their images are promoting whiskey.
Maybe I need to check out a copy of that book.
I guess there is enough hypocrisy and ignorance to go around.
Given his reputation, wouldn’t Ulysses Grant be a better advert for a whiskey brand, North or South?
I can’t resist recollecting James Thurber’s vignette “If Grant had been drinking at Appomattox” where a badly hungover Grant hands a disapproving Lee his sword with the words “General, if I hadn’t been drinking, we’d have beaten you”.
Good point Toby, but also one that has been debated in recent years by historians. I would check Brooks Simpson’s biography of Grant for more on this.
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