1861 all over again


February 8, 2004, 09:34 AM
Its 1861 and you live in the United States, you have ONLY two choices. You can go out the back door of your home and join the Confederate Army or go out the front door and join the Union Army. If you don't choose one side or the other, angry mobs will burn down your home with you in it in two minutes.
Despite all the good and all the evil that occurred, desite all the just and unjust causes which side most suits you?

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February 8, 2004, 10:09 AM
Difficult choice, but the North's eventually going to win, so...

Shooter 2.5
February 8, 2004, 11:49 AM
For the Union because I'm pro-American, Pro-Freedom and Anti-Slavery.

February 8, 2004, 11:58 AM
I'd have a raccoon skin cap on and wandering around out west.

February 8, 2004, 12:19 PM
For the Union because I'm pro-American, Pro-Freedom and Anti-Slavery.
The Union was pro-American, but that's pretty much it, and being blindly pro-American is not a virtue in my book.
The Civil war did little to enhance freedom in this country.
As an earlier thread mentioned, the Union wasn't fond of freeing slaves except outside said Union. In other words, they were anti-slavery ... for everyone else. The thirteenth amendment wasn't passed until well after the war was over.

Don't accuse me of being racist or pro-slave. I'm neither. I simply don't see the Union as the blameless saviors of the world. 'Course, neither were the Confeds by a long shot.

I'd leave through the side door and try to bag the highest ranking officer I could from each side on my way out. I hold in very low esteem any that would hold a war on my lawn.

February 8, 2004, 12:32 PM
I'm from Boston -- the choice is clear.

I remember when they did the series for the Civil War. They spoke about two soldiers -- the one from the South asked the Northerner -- "Why are you fighting this war?" He replied, "To save the Union." When asked the same question the Southerner replied "I'm fighting because you're here."

It'd probably be true of most us if an angry mob was outside our door....:p

4v50 Gary
February 8, 2004, 12:47 PM
First, I have neither sentiments of loyalty nor sympathy for the Southern cause. No relative of mine fought for in the war (we weren't here yet).

Why the South then? Simple. I don't want to fight and I want out. So, I'd desert ala Samuel Clemens (Mark Twain), take the loyalty oath and get out of the war. Does the Boston Journal need another reporter?:p

February 8, 2004, 01:37 PM
My ancestors fought for the South and from what I've studied on the subject, they fought for correct and honorable reasons.

February 8, 2004, 02:34 PM
the South and from what I've studied on the subject, they fought for correct and honorable reasons.
By the end of the War, even most Southerners questioned the "nobleness" of their cause, their lack of faith helped to bring about their defeat. In the North, by '63 most had no noble cause, they just wanted to get the war over with one way or another.

February 8, 2004, 02:49 PM
I'd cut the mob down, and then move to Fiji.

February 8, 2004, 03:02 PM
A civil war is a conflict between opposing groups of citizens for control of a country. The War of Northern Aggression was fought between The Confederate States of America and the United States of America.
This conflict , despite over 100 years of spin, was not a "civil war". The loyalty of a soldier was to their own nation,so there was really very little choice in which side to join.

Don Gwinn
February 8, 2004, 03:05 PM
You want the truth? I'm from Illinois. I'd probably be Union. Be a harder choice if they'd had an internet and such back then, but they didn't.

February 8, 2004, 04:18 PM
Confederate of course. I'd hate to fight against my own ancestors.

By the end of the War, even most Southerners questioned the "nobleness" of their cause, their lack of faith helped to bring about their defeat. I would wonder if you might have considered chronic starvation to be a prime factor in loss of faith? The Confederacy lost a percentage of its population to disease and famine roughly equivalant to the percentage of Latvians, Estonians and Lithuanians who were starved out by Stalin. We will never know exactly, but the total death rate for 1860-65 was something between 25% and 35%.

February 8, 2004, 04:45 PM
Confederate. I will be damned if I will join in the oppressing and shafting of the Constitution.

Do I get to have my AK?:D

February 8, 2004, 06:00 PM
After some reading on the subject, I'm forced to the conclusion that Lincoln
destroyed the Republic behind the smokescreen of saving the Union...:mad: I'd go with the South.


Bill St. Clair
February 8, 2004, 06:07 PM
I would devote my life to the assassination of Abe Lenin (http://lneilsmith.com/abelenin.html). He lived entirely too long.

February 8, 2004, 06:34 PM
I'd have a raccoon skin cap on and wandering around out west.

I'd go out the northern door head west til about 1865 then come back to the east, wait about 20 years and then invest in some of Thomas Edison's inventions.

February 8, 2004, 07:09 PM
Between the two choices, I'd go with the South.

But, in all honesty, given my ancestry and, if allowed to entertain my druthers, I'd run up north to my tribe and wait it out, hoping that the south would when so we could get back our land and way of life.

February 8, 2004, 07:15 PM
This conflict , despite over 100 years of spin, was not a "civil war".
WOW! Talk about re-writing history:eek:

February 8, 2004, 07:45 PM
Talk about re-writing history
Has nothing to do with re-writing history. The war did not meet the definition of a civil war. The South never wanted nor sought to gain control of the entire country and replace the government with their own. They fought to leave that government and rule themselves.

To consider the war a "civil" war, you would have to characterize the Revolutionary War a civil war involving England. The only differences between this war and the Revolutionary War is that in one case, there was an ocean dividing the combatants. The other difference is that in the "Civil War," the side wishing independence had a legal right to leave, while in the Revolutionary War, the side wishing to leave was in rebellion against their sovereign ruler.

Chris Rhines
February 8, 2004, 07:52 PM
I don't fight for anyone but myself. Not even if government thugs tell me to. I'll take the angry mobs.

- Chris

February 8, 2004, 10:02 PM
Lincoln was a dictator. I would go Confederate with the rest of the family. Oddly enough, MOST CSA veterans were decorated for valor in the Span-Am War.

February 8, 2004, 11:19 PM
confederacy. shame lincoln didnt catch it a whole lot sooner than he did.

February 9, 2004, 01:52 PM
For freedom, independence and the preservation of our constitution!

Joe Demko
February 9, 2004, 02:14 PM
The Union. Whatever motivations Lincoln et. al. might have had, you may consider me an abolitionist. Slavers belong at the end of a rope, preferably put there by their former slaves, regardless of which side of the Mason-Dixon line they call home.

Jim March
February 9, 2004, 03:03 PM
This thread damages our cause (GUN RIGHTS), it provides incredible PR fodder for the grabbers and is a stupid re-hash of a very old argument.

Yo "Rebs": you can argue "state's rights" and all that till the cows die of old age and rot. Most Americans see the Civil War as being about slavery and white supremacy. YES, that is at a minimum too simplistic, I know that as well as anybody here.

But the EFFECT of Sarah Brady's minions doing a press release to the effect of "gun nut poll shows the majority would support the Confederacy and slavery" with a link to this page would NOT be something y'all want. That's also why I get the urge to strangle those with Reb flag T-shirts and the like at gun shows...it's just DUMB, 'specially here in Calif where TV news often has cameras around...

This thread is NOT "High Road material" and I formally ask the moderators to "yank" it.

February 9, 2004, 03:21 PM
I voted South, but in reality I'd probably do as my ancestors did and bug out of Pennsylvania to Texas to avoid the whole dang thing. Talk about SHTF ...

Too bad they didn't have the Internet back then. They could have just had a poll and settled it that way. Would'a saved a lot of lives and misery.:D

BTW, a lot of Montana pioneers were reb soldiers who mustered out of the CSA Army to go back to .... Nothing!

Shooter 2.5
February 9, 2004, 03:26 PM
It's ironic to hear all the revisionist History coming from people who claim to be conservatives. If anyone is interested as to why the South left the Union, all they have to do is search for the Declarations of Secession from the Southern States. Slavery is the number one reason. Just because a state may have mentioned something else once, does't make it the chief reason.
The real question should be: Would you rather be at the lowest social ranking in the South or the North during the 1850's?

February 9, 2004, 03:37 PM
The real question should be: Would you rather be at the lowest social ranking in the South or the North during the 1850's?
In other words, would I rather be a black slave in the North or in the South ....?

Shooter 2.5
February 9, 2004, 03:53 PM
The North had already given up slavery. The question is between a black slave or a factory worker.
But since we are writing about 1861, I'll change it to that point in time. I don't want to confuse anyone.

February 9, 2004, 03:57 PM
The North had already given up slavery.

You talk about revisionist history? I suppose you'll reply that the majority of northerners had given up slavery. To that I reply that the majority of southerners didn't have slaves to begin with.

Look, the southern cause was not as noble as many would make it out to be, but this whole north = good south = evil crap is just silly.

Shooter 2.5
February 9, 2004, 04:02 PM
Name one Northern state that had slavery in 1861with a link as proof.

February 9, 2004, 04:24 PM
There were slaves reported in the North as of the 1860 census. While you may technically be correct, the site below does a good job of revealing the hypocrisy of the holier than thou yankees who insist that the south was evil and they were good.


Jim March
February 9, 2004, 04:27 PM
Part of the confusion is that not all the "slave states" sided with the Confederacy. A few near the borders stayed with the Union. And when Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, he limited it to those states "in rebellion" so yes, there were still at that point some "Union slave states".

I wouldn't call them "Northern"...

Here's the actual states that formed the Confederacy:

South Carolina (December 20, 1860)
Mississippi (January 9, 1861)
Florida (January 10,1861)
Alabama (January 11, 1861)
Georgia (January 19, 1861)
Louisiana (January 26, 1861)
Texas (February 1, 1861)
Virginia (April 17, 1861)
Arkansas (May 6, 1861)
Tennessee (May 7, 1861)
North Carolina (May 21, 1861)

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Confederate_States_of_America

Here's the "loyal slave states":

Maryland, Delaware, Kentucky, Missouri stayed with Union

West Virginia separated from Virginia and stayed with Union


This short piece is also worth the read:


If correct, and both Delaware and Maryland were technically slave states but for economic reasons were both abandoning slavery, that would be a serious motive for the "strongly slave south" to seceed when it did. The Southern states wanted one new slave state for every new free state, to maintain the balance of power in Congress (esp. Senate). The big problem they had with Lincoln was that he wouldn't commit to maintaining that balance.

Well if DE and MD were about to jump, that would hose 'em right there.

Jim March
February 9, 2004, 04:39 PM
Fix: nowhere on the page you cite is there any reference to Northern slaves as of 1860 - and I'm not talking about the "four and a half" slave states which remained loyal.

Yes, we all know the Northern states had slaves and got rid of slavery long before the Civil War. Old news...anybody who's read Dred Scott (1856) knows that.

February 9, 2004, 04:48 PM
Sorry Jim. That figure was from the site's main page.


When the Northern states gave up the last remnants of legal slavery, in the generation after the Revolution, their motives were a mix of piety, morality, and ethics; fear of a growing black population; practical economics; and the fact that the Revolutionary War had broken the Northern slaveowners' power and drained off much of the slave population. An exception was New Jersey, where the slave population actually increased during the war. Slavery lingered there until the Civil War, with the state reporting 236 slaves in 1850 and 18 as late as 1860.

While the numbers are low, one must take into account the probability that not all slave holders reported their slaves during the census due to the trend towards abolition.

Look, I'm not claiming that the south was right. They certainly were not. What I'm saying is that the north was not without sin and should therefore not be so quick to cast the first stone.

Cool Hand Luke 22:36
February 9, 2004, 04:50 PM
I would devote my life to the assassination of Abe Lenin. He lived entirely too long.

I take issue wth a few points from this "Abe Lenin" website. Wasn't it Grant and Sherman who instituted the concept of total war, and not Lincoln?

And speaking of war atrocities, what about Andersonville?

February 9, 2004, 04:58 PM
Another point frequently overlooked is that the northern states never "freed" their slaves. Slavery was gradually phased out beginning in the early 1800s, but the method used didn't give any existing slaves their freedom.

Existing slaves were designated as slaves for life. Children born to existing slaves in the north were to remain slaves until reaching adulthood, at which point they would become free. Under this system, it was determined that slavery would be completely gone in the north by around 1873.

It was done this way so that the slave owners in the north would not lose their "property rights" without compensation. The northern slave owners merely headed south and sold their slaves in the Southern slave market.

An ulterior motive for this was the northerns did not wish to have freed slaves or any other non-whites living in their state. For example, in 1788, the state of Massachusetts passed a law ordering every black, mulatto or Indian who came into the state and remained two months to be whipped publicly and to repeated until the offender either left the state or died. This law remained on the books until 1834 when there were no non-whites left to kick out.

Gotta love the duplicity of the northerners.

February 9, 2004, 05:07 PM
This thread is NOT "High Road material" and I formally ask the moderators to "yank" it.

I agree, but how about just yanking the poll? The discussion is great, but I could definitely see the poll being used against us.

February 9, 2004, 05:09 PM
I'd go South and look up one of my ancestors, Capt. Benjamin Harrison Screws of Co. K, 29th Alabama Inf......... and shake his hand.

At the age of 19, he was called "the boy captain of the Confederacy".

And YES, I am VERY PROUD of him!


February 9, 2004, 05:10 PM
what about Andersonville?

When the self-righteous Yankee is challenged to explain why he thinks he has a right to deny self-determination to the Southern people, he quickly grabs one of his two most valuable scare charges - slavery or Andersonville. With either of these magic wands of Yankee propaganda, the Northerner usually is able to silence rational discussion.

Lincoln's Secretary of War, Edwin Stanton, noted that a higher percentage of Southern POWs died while in Yankee camps than did Northern POWs held by the South. Still the mythmakers have continued to select only the facts that they wish preserved in their official history.

The South Was Right by J.R. Kennedy & W.D. Kennedy

February 9, 2004, 05:11 PM
And speaking of war atrocities, what about Andersonville?

Are you suggesting that there is some moral equivilency between the disputed atrocities at the Andersonville prison, populated entirely by Union soldiers and the accepted atrocities perpetrated by Sherman's men on non-combatants who were in fact, mostly women and children?

I say disputed, because a Union soldier who was imprisoned there wrote a book in which he himself dismissed the many allegations as exaggerations. Many of the prisoners in Andersonville stated that the worst food shortages at the prison started during Sherman's march. At Oconee, on the Central Railway of Georgia, Howard's corps burned two trains of cars loaded with corn meal, flour and bacon, on the way to feed the Andersonville prisoners. When informed by the conductor of the train of this fact, he was answered by Howard's commissary that he did not believe him and ordered the conductor under guard as a prisoner and forthwith set fire to his cars. When asked why he did not take the flour and bacon for the use of his army, he answered, "We have more now than we can haul; our men have been feeding on chickens, turkeys, milk and honey ever since we left Atlanta."

February 9, 2004, 05:24 PM
This thread is NOT "High Road material" and I formally ask the moderators to "yank" it.

You want to cancel this thread because you don't like the poll results! Thats the worst comment made on this thread! I find the views to be interesting and for the most part informed. Either side has (had) its good reasons, their was no one issue or cause. Personally, I could go either way, state's rights or restore the Union and STILL hold my head high.

February 9, 2004, 05:30 PM
I don't think that is at all what Jim is saying. Jim brought up a very valid point, and despite my abhorrence for political correctness I tend to agree with him. Fortunately, since then the debate has become a bit more academic and appears to at least be on track to remain civil.

Sean Smith
February 9, 2004, 05:42 PM
Are you suggesting that there is some moral equivalency between Sherman's men destorying or stealing property, and the Southern politicians initiating a war for the STATED PURPOSE* of protecting their investment in human slaves?


*Read the statements of their own secession conventions for details, or some of Jeff Davis' speeches in 1861. The blather of "The South Was Right!" imbecilles like the Kennedys et. al. only holds water if you ignore what the political leaders of the South actually said or wrote at the time.


None of which proves that the North was the repository of some special Godly virtue, just that alot of folks will do anything to preserve their mythologized view of the Confederacy, even in the face of what the actual Confederate leaders said.

You want to cancel this thread because you don't like the poll results!

He's concerned the poll results can be easily used as "evidence" to insinuate that The High Road is more like The Jim Crow Road and (as a representative sample of gun owners) populated with a bunch of unreconstructed neo-Confederate racist vermin.

Last I checked, the purpose of this forum was to advance the cause of responsible firearms ownership, not engage in self-destructive historical navel-gazing.

February 9, 2004, 05:57 PM
Are you suggesting that there is some moral equivalency between Sherman's men destorying or stealing property, and the Southern politicians initiating a war for the STATED PURPOSE* of protecting their investment in human slaves?

What does that have to do with Andersonville?

Look, I don't think anyone here has made any attempt to justify the actions of the south. I certainly haven't. But, just because the south was wrong does not automatically make the north right. The north had been wisely "phasing out" slavery for years, having been blessed with a more industrialized economy. I have no doubt that had the north not had that economic advantage, they would have been singing a different tune with regards to slavery. Thank God they did have that advantage, or it might have taken another 50 years to wipe out slavery.

I guess I spoke too soon regarding civility.

Bruce H
February 9, 2004, 06:39 PM
Lets revise history some more. There should have been a third army. They should have killed every blue and gray clad person they found. They should have gutted every politician they could have caught. Like all disagreements between men of small minds the end result is death to the ones who deserve it least.

As to atrocities in war. There is no such thing. Once war starts winning is the only thing that matters. Was isn't a parlor game and trying to make it so with silly rules is complete BS.

February 9, 2004, 06:55 PM
You want to cancel this thread because you don't like the poll results!

Not because of poll results -- the poll is going the way I think most of us would have expected -- but the poll itself.

This is a great discussion, but this little poll is custom-designed for use by our enemies as a sound bite.

I don't want to see the lowest common demoninator of an informative discussion about events from 100+ years ago deliver powerful ammo to the enemy on a silver (scandium? titanium?) platter.

February 9, 2004, 07:26 PM
It is true that the War was about slavery. The massive agricultural economy of the South would have never existed without the hard work of those millions of slaves, and without that economy, the North would not have had the tax revenues that funded it's industrial growth.
It was fear of losing that revenue that started the War. The South was fed up with sending so much of it's wealth to the North, and getting little in return.
Slavery as an institution could not have lasted much longer in the South,the framers of the Confederate Constitution knew this. They banned the further importation of slaves and outlawed the practice of forcefully returning those who ran. Those who remained would have won their freedom eventually, and would have been welcome to stay.
Lincoln,the great emancipator,would have shipped those slaves out of the country. I know many of you will be shocked by that,I do not have a link as "proof",but those of you who still have books can find the passages in either Carl Sandburg's Abraham Lincoln:The War Years or Vol.9,page 363,of The Annals of America.
My family came to Texas in 1830, they brought about 25 slaves. I am probaly the only one here who has actually known someone born into slavery.When I was young,I was cared for by a wonderful lady who was then in her late eighties and still going strong. The decendents of those slaves worked my grandfather's farm,as free men. I will tell you, talent, genius and beauty arise from all races and those were good people. I do not mean "good negras who kept their place",but honest, decent God fearing people.
Most of you in the North and many in the South have never really known such people. Their ancestors were not chained and whipped, they were part of a pioneer community;they were blacksmiths, carpenters, farmers.
I do not mean to justify slavery,but it was the world they were born into, no one then, white or black, knew any other way of life. I am not ashamed to say that I have African-American cousins. Most of the great negro universities of the South were started by the fathers of mixed race children who loved them as much as any parent loves their children.
My family fought to free Texas from Mexico and later to free the South from what they percieved as a intrusive federal government that did not have their best interest in mind, does that sound familiar?
My grandfather and his father risked their lives opposing the KKK,those hooded barbarians. The klan was and still is a horde of uneducated white trash who have replaced reason with mindless hate for a people they really do not know.
It is the truly racist policies of the federal government that is causing the destruction of the Afican-American people. The rates of illiteracy, un-wed mothers and poverty are staggering; add to this almost unlimited access to dangerous drugs and you have a recipe for disaster. You see the results on your local news every day.
Because of this have come to believe that (IMHO) , had the South prevailed,the majority of Afican-Americans would probaly be better off then they are today.

February 9, 2004, 07:28 PM
Closed to prevent hypertension, hyperventilation and hypercombativeness from developing any further.

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