Note: This video came across my feed yesterday, but the date of the event is unknown.
How we respond to a video like this no doubt tells us a great deal about how we identify with our Civil War past as well as how we understand the war’s legacy and continued significance to our own lives and communities. Jacksonville City Councilwoman, Glorious Johnson, is clearly sincere in wanting to build connections and encourage understanding between the races in her own community. At the same time she chose to do it at an an event that is fraught with multiple and even conflicting meaning depending on the viewer. Continue reading “Building Bridges or Perpetuating a Myth?”
Both Andy Hall and Brooks Simpson have highlighted another instance of Confederate Heritage gone wild. It’s nothing new, whether we are discussing the latest Virginia Flagger fiasco or SCV misstep. I’ve been accused of highlighting heritage follies for the sake of blog stats and there is some truth to that. At the same time, however, I think it is important to highlight as wide a range of perspectives as possible during this sesquicentennial. Much of this has only emerged owing to social media channels such as Facebook, YouTube and blogging, which allows for incredibly nuanced narratives and perspectives on the past. Continue reading “Confederate Heritage Gone Wild”
By now many of you have learned that Virginia Flagger Tripp Lewis is being charged for “conduct unbecoming” by the Virginia Division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans. No word on the specifics of the charge, but I suspect more will be revealed in the near future. It goes without saying that this is not the kind of publicity that the Flaggers are looking for, but as we’ve seen this kind of news has become business as usual.
My curiosity is piqued given the reputation of the Edmund Ruffin Camp. So, are there other examples of charges brought against members by the Virginia Division or by any division in the SCV? What kinds of actions are we talking about? I am clearly not privy to the internal workings of the SCV so I wonder if those of you who are might fill us in with a bit more information about this organization’s disciplinary system. Are the charges brought against Lewis unusual?
And for those of you who need a quick reminder re: Tripp Lewis’s antics, click here.
Earlier this month Schuyler Kropf shared the story of Polly Sheppard, who was surprised to find the grave of a black Confederate soldier in the cemetery of the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church of Charleston. The individual in question is Louis B. Middleton, whose grave is marked with a soldiers’ headstone. This has all the earmarks of another in a long line of distorted stories about blacks who somehow managed to evade Confederate law and a society committed to keeping weapons out of their hands. Continue reading “A Black Confederate We Can All Live With”
While I was in Gettysburg this past June for the CWI I took a few minutes to record a Civil War Trust Civil War in4 video with Garry Adelman on Civil War memory. I was way over-prepared and incredibly nervous. Let’s just say that I found it very difficult to whittle down this vast subject into a four minute segment, but somehow the editors managed to create some level of coherence out of the full recording.
Thanks so much to Garry for giving me my shot at stardom. I hope this serves as a useful introduction for teachers who are looking to introduce the subject to their middle school and high school classrooms. Finally, you need not worry as I promise not to quite my day job.