Sunday, February 12, 2012

150-years-ago -- THE SPIRIT OF THE SOUTH

The Richmond Daily Dispatch
12 February 1862

Pvt. John Jones of Alabama's look of
stalwart determination is emblematic
of the South's determination to win
Southern Independence in 1862.
(CDV, Blog Author's Collection)
 We predict that the recent disasters which our arms have suffered will have more effect in stimulating the volunteer spirit than could be accomplished by any other cause. It was in the darken bear of our fortunes that we saw the greatest rush of our population to arms, and if their zeal has since diminished, it was in consequence of that succession of brilliant victories which led them to despise the enemy and believe that all danger had past. We are now paying the penalty of this blunder, but we feel sure-paradoxical as it may appear, that our cause is safer in the moment of evident danger than in that of apparent security. If we do not altogether mistake the character of the Southern people, the most intense eagerness will now be manifested by every human being in the Southern Confederacy to retrieve our fortunes, and to have vengeance upon this insolent and bloody ice.

The people of the South have only one thing to ask, and that is that their patriotism and courage shall be as intelligently and prudently directed as they are cheerfully and disinterestedly offered. They are determined never to be subjugated by the Yankees.-- "never, never, never." If they take our cities, that is no more than the British did in 1776, and even in 1812, when they captured the capital of the Republic. In the Revolution, Richmond itself was taken by the Yankee traitor in British pay, Benedict Arnold; New York was not only taken, but held six years, and never given up till peace; whole States were overrun and occupied by the enemy. But the spirit of the people could not be conquered, and, unless the South has degenerated, it cannot be conquered now. If she held out then for seven years, against the British Lion, ought she not to hold out seventy against a nation which has so far fallen from its first estate that the faintest roar of the Lion has thrown it into convulsions? But there must be no more apathy — no more false security; every man must act as if upon him alone depended the destinies of the Republic. The North is about to make its last and greatest effort. Let us summon all our energies, and by all that is glorious in our past, and that is worth living for in the future — by the graves of our dead, and the homes of our living, let us have victory and vengeance.

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