Thursday, May 31, 2012

Upcoming Alabama Statewide Events of Interest for Confederate Heritage

A perusal of the Alabama Tourism Department Sweet Home Alabama statewide Calendar of Events for June include some events of interest for Confederate heritage supporters. 
Ashville | Jun 2, 2012
Jun 2, Ashville Jefferson Davis Tea 205-338-2412. Free. John. W. Inzer Museum—Event celebrating the birthday of Jefferson Davis with host in period dress and men in Confederate uniforms. Sponsored by St. Clair Camp 308, Sons of Confederate Veterans, Ashville Chapter 1488, United Daughters of the Confederacy and The John W. Inzer Museum, Inc. 2-4 p.m.
Montgomery | Jun 4, 2012
Jun 4, Montgomery Jefferson Davis Birthday Commemoration 334-365-4713. Free. In front of the State Capitol--Jefferson Davis's Birthday is a state holiday. The event will be commemorated in the front of the State Capitol with a short program on his life, the placing of a wreath at his statue, and finally with a birthday cake at the First White House of the Confederacy, where Jefferson Davis lived in the spring of 1861. 10 a.m.-noon.
Guntersville | Jun 8-10, 2012
Sons of Confederate Veterans Alabama Division annual convention at lake Guntersville State Park hosted by the Capt. John Rayburn Camp 452.  Program includes Commanders Reception, Business Meeting with division elections, and a Banquet with keynote speaker Walter D. Kennedy, author Myths of American Slavery. 

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Elijah Hunt, Private, Company B, 15th Georgia Infantry of Benning's Brigade Pt.3

Elijah Hunt was a Private in Co. B of the 15th Georgia Infantry  – they fought under Benning’s Brigade and mentioned in some of these histories (another good website) - .  My prior research had shown he enlisted early on, July 14th, 1861 and mustered out in November 1863 (when he died) and so he would have been a part of the campaigns at Fredericksburg, Gettysburg and Chickamauga.  Here’s a third excerpt from this Benning's Brigade website regarding unit action at Chickamauga:
On the left flank of the Benning’s brigade line, the 15th Ga. cleared the same woodlot that the 2nd and 17th had, only on the forest’s southern edge, facing south through the northeastern part of the Viniard Field. The exact timing and location of the 15th’s arrival was entirely accidental, but could not have been more fortuitous. To their south and east stood the Texas brigade, holding firm against a Northern attack. Directly to their south, yards away, lay the exposed left flank of the attacking federals, mostly members of Carlin’s northern brigade, who faced the Texans. Heg’s brigade had been supporting Carlin’s, but was disrupted by the actions of the 2nd and 17th Ga., and only disorganized elements of Heg’s brigade provided any cover for Carlin’s flank. The 15th unleashed a savage flanking fire into these northern troops, the intensity of which increased as elements of the 20th Ga. emerged from the thickets to the right of the 15th Ga., further enfilading the northern line. Gen. Robertson reported, “General Benning came up promptly with his brigade, and with his usual gallantry assisted in holding our position until nightfall…” As the tide of the fight turned, Robertson’s men began to advance. Under severe pressure in front and flank, the Union lines collapsed. The 15th and 20th Ga. pivoted a bit to their right and came into line with the 17th and 2nd Ga., parallel to the LaFayette Road and along the western edge of woods facing the Viniard farm buildings and the Glenn Field. The left flank of the 15th (and the brigade) rested on the Alexander-Viniard Road; the right flank of the 2nd (and the brigade) was perhaps ¼ mile to the north.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Elijah Hunt, Private, Company B, 15th Georgia Infantry of Benning's Brigade Pt.2

Elijah Hunt was a Private in Co. B of the 15th Georgia Infantry  – they fought under Benning’s Brigade and mentioned in some of these histories (another good website) - .  My prior research had shown he enlisted early on, July 14th, 1861 and mustered out in November 1863 (when he died) and so he would have been a part of the campaigns at Fredericksburg, Gettysburg and Chickamauga.  Here’s a second excerpt from this Benning's Brigade website regarding subsequent action at Gettysburg after the first day:
As Col. DuBose led the 15th forward, he expected to encounter some of McLaws’ pickets. After advancing about 500 yards from the rest of the brigade, DuBose reported that “instead of finding his troops [McLaws’] upon my left, that the enemy were moving around upon my left in heavy force.”  Gen. Benning elaborated on DuBose’ position - “he suddenly found himself in the immediate presence of two long lines of the enemy, one almost at right angles to the other, with his own line between the two, the head of it being not far from the angle they made with each other. They opened fire on him, which he returned, so as to check their advance a little”. The enemy forces were William McCandless’ brigade of Pennsylvania Reserves. The 15th Georgia, alone in Rose Woods, was facing at least four Union regiments. Ironically, the northern troops had been sent out in response to the additional skirmishers Benning had ordered out to cover his left flank. The Pennsylvanians had advanced west from the area around Little Round Top, into the Wheatfield, then pivoted to the south and advanced into Rose Woods.  The 15th fired its first volley into them from a distance of about forty yards. The northern force heavily outnumbered them, and Federal troops quickly turned both of the 15th’s flanks, while advanced in its front. About this time Col. DuBose received the messenger from Gen. Benning bearing the clarified version of Law’s orders. Observing the enemy overlapping both of his regiment’s flanks, DuBose drew his line of battle back about 70 or 80 yards, and tried to readjust the facing of his front.  The new orders from Col. Benning, coupled with the necessity to withdraw, demanded this displacement be towards the southwest, rather than towards Devil’s Den. The time from the regiment’s first shot to its reaching the second defensive position was on the order of ten minutes.
Reaching their new position, the men took cover behind rocks and trees and for several minutes put up a desperate fight, but the enemy again pinned their front and worked around both flanks. Seeing northerners within 20 to 40 yards of his men, and no re-enforcements coming to his relief, DuBose again ordered a retreat. The regiment fell back another 300 or 400 yards, rallied behind a stone fence, and for a few more minutes, checked the advance of the enemy. Sheer numbers allowed the enemy to again turn both of the 15th’s flanks.
Besides enduring an exhausting, running fight, the Georgians were sustaining heavy casualties, and losing prisoners with every move. During one of these stops, which lasted for mere minutes, “The enemy was in twenty steps of our front line, and the colors had been shot down a half dozen times. Men in Company C, the color company, said that nine were killed with the colors, and they were finally left on the ground, as it was certain death to pick: them up.”  Sgt. James B. Thompson, Company G, First Pennsylvania Rifles, ultimately picked up the flag of the Fifteenth Georgia and carried it out of Rose Woods, a trophy.  After retreating some 400 yards farther back, DuBose again rallied the remnant of his regiment behind another stone fence. This time they found themselves completely enfiladed by one of the enemy's batteries. A final, hurried retreat reunited the 15th with the balance of Benning’s brigade, along Seminary Ridge, having just experienced its own share of adventures.
Between 260 and 265 men served with 15th Georgia on July 3, 1863, and Col. DuBose reported that 101 of them became casualties that day.  Some were wounded or captured on skirmish duty, but it is probable that at least ninety were lost during this romp through Rose Woods. Gen. Benning (stated), “He [DuBose and the 15th] was fortunate to escape at all. His escape is high evidence both of his skill and courage. I did not go to his assistance, because, when I heard the fire, it seemed to be (and was, indeed) so far on my left that I thought some of General McLaws' men had been sent forward to check an advance of the enemy.”

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Elijah Hunt, Private, Company B, 15th Georgia Infantry of Benning's Brigade

Found a website which may be of interest to those researching their ancestry - On the left side of the webpage you can perform new searches.  The link here actually shows the information for Elijah Hunt who was one of my great great great grandfathers on my mother’s side.   I had not known where he was buried and winds up it is actually just up I-85 at a Confederate Veterans cemetery in Newnan GA. 

This same webpage for Elijah Hunt actually gives a reference and link to his wife’s grave, Mahala Neal Harris Hunt - . This webpage provides ancestral information for Mahala to include daughter of Elizabeth Gober Neal, as in the Gober family which if traced back actually shows that Henry Gober of Millbrook, Real Son of Confederate Veteran Lisbon Failes Gober and I have a common great great (etc) grandfather back in the 1700s, name being William Gober I.

Elijah Hunt was a Private in Co. B of the 15th Georgia Infantry  – they fought under Benning’s Brigade and mentioned in some of these histories (another good website) - .  My prior research had shown he enlisted early on, July 14th, 1861 and mustered out in November 1863 (when he died) and so he would have been a part of the campaigns at Fredericksburg, Gettysburg and Chickamauga.  Here’s an excerpt from this Benning's Brigade website regarding Gettysburg (some pretty interesting intense action):

The 15th and 20th approached a worm fence 100 yards southwest of the bottom of the triangular field, just as the Union defenders launched a counterattack on the Texans in the triangular field. The Texans were presently running pell mell towards the protection of the same fence, albeit from the opposite direction. On gaining the fence, the Texans quickly rallied along the same line the 15th was taking up, intermingling with the Georgians. The combined force of Georgians and Texans let rip a volley, described by one of its recipients in the triangular field, a member of the 124th NY Infantry, as “a terrible fire which seemed in an instant to bring down a quarter of our numbers.”

The Confederate advance was not to be stopped. As the 15th Ga./1st Tex. then crested  the slope, they engaged the enemy at a distance of only yards. The fighting nearly become hand-to-hand before the Yankee line – here, the remnants of the 124th NY - broke. The retreat of the 124th NY allowed the 15th Ga./1st Texas to flank the troops directly in front of the 20th, mostly the 4th Maine Infantry. Like a domino, the 4th Maine toppled in front of the 20th Georgia, and the 20th suddenly captured three of the four artillery pieces.  The enemy fell back into woods behind and to left of Devil’s Den.162 This attack did not last long – a member of the 15th wrote only that “We charged the enemy, driving them from their position.”

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

An Afternoon with a Real Son of a Confederate Veteran

Had the pleasure this week of meeting Henry Gober of Millbrook AL, a Real Son of Confederate Veteran Lisbon Failes Gober and, a member of the Prattville Dragoons, SCV Camp 1524.  Past Commander Wyatt Willis arranged for our meeting at Mr.Gober's home which he had built when he was a general contractor and has lived in for the past 29 years or so.  Lisbon Failes Gober is buried at the Rocky Mount cemetery nearby in Prattville.  It was an enjoyable hour spent chatting with Mr.Gober on the front porch of his home, enjoying the cool breeze blown up by some afternoon thunderstorms and which stiffened the Confederate Battle Flag which proudly flew on a pole in his front yard.  He related that things have changed very much in his years and that his home was the only one in the vicinity when he built it and is now surrounded by a neighborhood off Main Street in Millbrook.  The Gobers along with the Cobbs and McQueens owned many of the acres of land which now has been developed as the Prattville High Point shopping centers, hotels, restaurants and the Robert Trent Jones golf courses and turned Prattville into a tourist and shopping destination. He expressed concern over the current White House administration as most of us do.  Very small world twofold.  It winds up that Mr.Gober considers Dave Thomas of Millbrook his very best friend and I had actually rented Mr.Thomas' mother-in-law cottage for a year or two prior to building my home.  Their land actually adjoins each other.   Also, in researching my ancestry for the Sons of Confederate Veterans I had Googled one of my great great great grandfathers, Elijah Hunt, who my Grandmother Essie Rhodes had briefly mentioned in her memoirs. Winds up he had a fascinating history as a Private in Company B of the 15th Georgia Infantry under General Benning's Brigade, the namesake for the U.S. Army Fort Benning in Columbus GA and saw combat at Fredericksburg, Gettysburg and Chickamauga - watch for a future post with more information.  So, in my research, I found that Elijah Hunt was married to Mahala Harris Neal who was the great grand-daughter of William Gober I who emigrated from England in the 1700s and lived in Virginia and North Carolina.  William Gober I is also the great great great great grandfather of Henry Gober of Millbrook AL.  Small world indeed.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Bob Bradley Provides Names for The American War to the Dragoons Camp

Bob Bradley, Chief Curator at the Alabama State Archives addressed the Prattville Dragoons at their May camp meeting with his speech "Name for the American War". Those today who truly care about the name for the American War of 1861-1865 prefer the term War Between the States as opposed to the Civil War.  This debate as to what to call the War surfaced around the turn of the 19th-20th century.  Merton Coulter (Professor at University of Georgia) traced the geneology of the debate for the name of the War around 1952. Prior to the War, Southerners referred to the possibility of a Civil War in the event the Republican nominee Lincoln was elected. Immediately after the breakup of the Democratic Convention led by William Loundes Wancey, the rumor of a possible Civil War was highlighted.  Accounts of the firing on Ft.Sumter referred to the event leading to a Civil War.  But, as the War progressed, the term Civil War was rejected by the South, first in 1864 by the Richmond Examiner, instead referring to The War.  South Carolina Governor Pickens referred to a War of the Sections. The New Orleans Picayune referred to the War for Independence.  General Longstreet on Lee's staff referred to the Civil War in wartime correspondence and General Nathan Bedford Forrest in his farewell address to his troops referred to "a Civil War you have just endured." Just after the War was made the first reference to The War Between the States. After the U.S. government published the volumes "The War of the Rebellion" in the 1880s, a concerted resistance to this and inaccurate, inappropriate reference was mounted by the United Confederate Veterans and the United Daughters of the Confederacy.  In 1889 the UDC demanded by proclamation that the War be termed the War Between the States and in 1914 they introduced federal legislation to have the War officially recognized as the War Between the States but it never progressed past committee. Additional names for the War Between the States included War for Seperation, Confederate War for Independence, War for Secession, 2nd War for American Independence, War of Northern Aggression, War of the Sections, Mr.Lincoln's War, War for Southern Independence and, the quite accurate, War for Constitutional Liberty as well as many more.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Prattville Dragoons SCV Camp 1524 May Meeting

The Prattville Dragoons convened for their regularly scheduled monthly camp meeting at the Shoneys on Cobbs Ford Road in Prattville Thursday evening, May 10th.  Just prior to the start of the meeting proper, Happy Birthday was sung and a delicious chocolate cake was enjoyed in celebration of the 72nd birthday of Montgomery Semple Camp Commander Philip Davis. After the invocation by Chaplain Tom Snowden and the pledges to the flags led by Color Sgt. Larry Spears, introductions were made by Commander Chris Booth to include the ladies present, Mrs. Davis, Mrs. Casey, Mrs. Thornton, and Mrs. Crowley.  Prospective new members present were David Lyle visiting from the Tallassee camp but residing in Prattville and Josh Thomas who signed up for information at the Prattville Cityfest.  Greg Meadows was presented a certificate of appreciation for himself and for the Prattville Progress for the outstanding coverage provided to the Dragoons especially for the recent Confederate Memorial Day program. Greg Meadows with WIQR was also recognized for running the radio spots in commemoration of Confederate History month in April and at the conclusion of the meeting he requested additional spots to highlight the parallels between the political climate of the 1850s and today to emphasize the plight of state's rights. Bob Bradley was also introduced prior to him delivering a great message entitled "The Name for the American War".  The Dragoons presented Mr. Bradley with a check for $500 for Confederate flag preservation at the Archives and he invited the Dragoons for a tour.  A half million dollars have been spent in the restoration and preservation of the 90 Confederate flags in the Archives collection, the third largest in the country. A report on the flag collection with descriptions can be found on the Alabama State Archives website.  Upcoming events were announced including the Alabama Division Annual Reunion June 8-10th; members of the Prattville Dragoons are planning on attending as votes for new Ammendments and new officers are scheduled.  The National Reunion is scheduled for July 11-14th in Murfreesboro TN. July 28th at Fort Dixie in Selma Gen. Forrest's Birthday Party will be celebrated which is an enjoyable event.  Monday June 4th, Jefferson Davis' birthday will be celebrated with cake at the First White House of the Confederacy.  Tickets for the annual Dixie Butt sale, the Dragoons annual fund raiser will be distributed next meeting and butts will be available the first of August.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

The Current and Historical State of Race Relations in the United States Part 2

"There is a natural disgust in the minds of nearly all white people to the idea of indiscriminate amalgamation of the white and black races ... A separation of the races is the only perfect preventive of amalgamation, but as an immediate separation is impossible, the next best thing is to keep them apart where they are not already together, said Lincoln.  That doesn't sound like integration.  Is this the diversity we have had preached to us incessantly for the past decades?   Lincoln went on to say, "Where there is a will there is a way," and what colonization needs most is a hearty will. Will springs from the two elements of moral sense and self-interest. Let us be brought to believe it is morally right, and, at the same time, favorable to, or, at least, not against, our interest, to transfer the African to his native clime, and we shall find a way to do it, however great the task may be."  Interesting many blacks prefer to be called "African Americans" and cling to their African "roots" which would lend one to believe Lincoln's position had credence and might be viable today.  Words on the issue from Lincoln from the famous debates with Douglas, "I have no purpose to introduce political and social equality between the white and black races. There is physical difference between the two which, in my judgment, will probably forever forbid their living together upon the footing of perfect equality, and inasmuch as it becomes a necessity that there must be a difference, I, as well as Judge Douglas, am in favor of the race to which I belong having the superior position." Further, "I will say then that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races; I am not nor ever have been in favor of making voters or jurors of negroes, nor of qualifying them to hold office, nor to intermarry with white people.  I will say in addition to this that there is a physical difference between the white and black races which I believe will forever forbid the two races living together on terms of social and political equality. And inasmuch as they cannot so live, while they do remain together there must be the position of superior and inferior, and I, as much as any other man, am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the white race."  Contrast Lincoln's position with that of Confederate States of America President Jefferson Davis who actually adopted a black child.  While Davis cited the Bible for historical and divine justification for slavery, he also believed slavery would naturally disappear within a generation (with the coming of the industrial revolution).  But the results of the emancipation of the slaves thru the 13th Ammendment to the Constitution (and not the Emancipation Proclamation) and the Civil Rights movement are debatable when you examine the poverty and despair wrought on the black populace of our country. The relatively recent policies of diversity, ethnic hyphenation of American identity and affirmative action contradict the time proven melting pot which was the key to the rise of greatness for the United States of America.  Integration has been rejected by the very minorities for which it was meant to provide an equal footing in favor of a militant demand for recognition of (sub)cultural validity. The escalation of single mother households in the black population as well as the inordinate divorce rate in mixed race (particularly white/black interracial) marriages highlights the quandry with the growing acceptance of these interracial unions.  Crime is a recognized plight of society burdened by rampant unemployment and a weak family foundation, which does not place the requisite value on human life - the terrorist cells in Arab countries follows this same model.  According to the Guttmacher Institute, black women have abortions at 5 times the rate of whites.  Is the inordinate abortion rate among blacks a natural precursor for the black-on-black and gang violent crime epidemic?  An appreciation of the value of each human life, each individual, without regard for the color of their skin but predicated on their worth and constructive contributions to the furthering of our communities and country should be the measure of a post racial society.  This current generation may be the first to leave our country worse for our children and it is because of the anchor of entitlements burdening our country's prosperity and the breakdown of the family structure especially in the black community which is only awarded and furthered by the federal welfare misplaced safety net.  Along with a revival of spiritual Christian dedication including principles of personal responsibility which should guide our nation and all of its citizens, we should remember quotations of two famous statesmen from the 1960s, another turbulent period in United States history.  "Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country." And. "I have a dream that my children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.  And if America is to be a great nation this must become true."

Thursday, May 10, 2012

The Current and Historical State of Race Relations in the United States Part 1

Despite the promises from the current President of the United States and his supporters that he represents the hope of a post racial era for our country, race relations appear to be as strained as they have been since the Civil Rights or "Civil War" (War for Southern Independence) periods.  Apparently, the mulatto occupying the White House has emboldened blacks to demand "their fair share" of entitlements and respect despite a continuing trend of higher crime and poor scholastic and professional achievement in the black community.  The Administration and Justice Department seem to simply harp on spreading the wealth and soaking the rich to "pay their fair share" instead of condemning the increasingly radical violent activities spreading across the country which is deepening the divide between the blacks and other ethnicities.  Almost 50% of Americans now have their hand out to receive some welfare or entitlement while a smaller fraction of the country provide jobs and pay into these social engineering programs which have proven to be a failure.  Is the slavery of yesteryear worse than the slavery on the federal dole for which over 37% of blacks are recipients.  33% of all welfare goes to blacks, the population of which comprises only 12% of the general population.  Despite the billions of dollars invested in social engineering projects and welfare meant to be a temporary assistance, a culture of underachievement, entitlement mentality and, dependence has evolved.  Was integration the solution?  Were more food stamps and ongoing Social Security for able bodied single mothers continuing to have children out of wedlock a solution?  A current radio advertisement pleading for continued full funding for Medicare states that over 50% of babies born in Alabama are "paid for by Medicaid".  That is appalling.  And now we have a mainstream media which seems to fan the flames of racial tension provocatively, skewing the facts of events to portray any white as the default instigator and culprit.  We have seen the injustice, the bias and blatantly unprofessional journalism regarding the Zimmerman/"Travon" Martin case and the result - an illegal bounty on Zimmerman's head by the New Black Panthers and seventeen (and counting) assaults on whites across the country by black gangs in the name of "Travon". And the mulatto President and Attorney General sit back moot except to say that Travon might look like what their son might have hypothetically.  Another irresponsible lack of leadership perhaps trumped only by Obama's "stupid Cambridge police" proclamation in a hasty, uninformed editorial regarding the arrest of a black professor on suspected breaking and entering charges.  What did the "Great Emancipator" (Lincoln) have to say about race relations?  Besides representing slave owners as a lawyer and marrying into one of the prominent slave holding families of Kentucky, Lincoln was quoted as saying, "I should not know what to do, as to the existing institution [of slavery]. My first impulse would be to free all the slaves, and send them to Liberia, to their own native land."  Free them but relocate them elsewhere, outside the United States. Asked whether freed blacks should be made "politically and socially our equals?" "My own feelings will not admit of this."  Equality? Lincoln thought not.  Affirmative action reeks of inequality and reverse discrimination - a preferential skin color bias... to be continued...

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Prattville Dragoons Answering the Charge of the Sons of Confederate Veterans

April was a good month for the Prattville Dragoons who continue to answer the charge of the Sons of Confederate Veterans to remember and honor our brave and noble Confederate ancestors who fought and died for their homeland and liberty.  All officers of the Prattville Dragoons renewed their commitment to the cause and agreed to serve in the same capacity for the upcoming year.  The swearing in of the elected officers which include Commander Chris Booth, 1st Lt. Harold Grooms, 2nd Lt. Stuart Waldo, Treasurer Billy Leverette, Adjutant Wayne Sutherland and Chaplain Tom Snowden was performed at the annual picnic at the Confederate Memorial Park April 14th.   Scott Roberson joined Camp 1524 and was also sworn in at the annual picnic.  Scott is a relative of former Commander Wyatt Willis. Finally, like Chad Roten who last month agreed to step up and assume the responsibilities of Color Sergeant, Michael Williamson has answered the call and by appointment of Commander Booth, will assume the role of camp Quartermaster which has been ably filled by Jeff Potts and Wayne Sutherland over the past few years.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Prattville Dragoons SCV Camp 1524 May Meeting

How many names can you think of for the War of 1861-1865? The Prattville Dragoons will join together for their regularly scheduled monthly camp meeting at the Shoneys on Cobbs Ford Road near I-65 in Prattville on Thursday evening, May 10th at 7pm.  The camp meetings are the second Thursday of each month.  Many members bring their significant others and arrive early to enjoy the delicious Shoneys dinner buffet.  The speaker for May is Mr. Bob Bradley, curator at the State Department of Archives and History and expert on the Battle Flag collection there.  Mr. Bradley will talk to us about the various and sundry names given the War for Southern Independence by the people of the North and South. The most common name for that war today is "The Civil War" due to indoctrination of the populace by the history books in the schools throughout the United States.  In the South, the most common name used to be The War Between the States and many in the SCV still use this name today.  The official name given the War by the United States government was The War of the Rebellion which is why there are 128 volumes of the Official Records of the War of the Rebellion from the US Printing Office.  Everyone is invited to join us on Thursday night for what is sure to be an enjoyable informative speech by Mr. Bradley which will assuredly be crowned by the presentation of a check from the camp for continued preservation of the Confederate flags in the Archives, one of the primary charges of the Prattville Dragoons camp.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Dragoons at this Weekend's Prattville Cityfest

Saturday May 5th was a good day at the Prattville CityFest and for the SCV Camp 1524 Dragoons.   Festival goers visited the Dragoon table, took away most of the free brochures, flyers, and other publications (e.g. Confederate Issues in Alabama) that we had on the table and, bought a substantial amount of the Quartermaster Stores (e.g. Fattle flags) Fifteen folks provided contact info requesting research info on their ancestor, the SCV, or the Dragoons.  Dragoon volunteers included Tyrone Crowley, Don Drasheff, Larry Miller, Bill Myrick, and Harold Grooms.  Commander Chris Booth and his young'uns and Karl Wade visited on and off during the day. 

Special thanks to Brigade Commander Bill Myrick, for staying all day and for buying hot dogs for the entire crew.  Special recognition to Adjutant Wayne Sutherland, always the key man at these functions for helping to set up/take down/store the canopy, bringing and inventorying items for sale, etc.  A special thanks to these two Dragoons for their part yesterday.

State Senator Bryan Taylor also took the time to stop, while pushing his Battle Flag-waving son in a stroller, to say hello and to apologize for missing our Memorial Day ceremony on Monday 23 April.  

Thanks to one and all who helped or visited.  Another good day for Prattville and the Dragoons.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Dragoons at the Prattville Cityfest

The Prattville Cityfest will be held Friday and Saturday, May 4-5th in the downtown Main Street area.  Friday the festivities commence with food and free music on the stage overlooking the river.  The Dragoons will again be setting up their booth that evening to be prepared for those attending Cityfest on Saturday.  We should be in the same spot as past years, close to the entrance to Main Street which is blocked from vehicular traffic for the duration of the festival.  We are across and slightly down (east) from the Prattaugan Museum which houses many Dragoons artifacts from the War for Southern Independence and from the early years including the founding of the Prattville community.  The Dragoons will be manning a table to provide information on the camp and the Sons of Confederate Veterans for passerbys.  Confederate memorabilia including Battle flags will be available for purchase at great prices with proceeds to benefit the work of the camp.  Youngsters will be able to receive complimentary small Confederate Battle Flags and SCV coins to proudly display their Southern pride and heritage while enjoying the Prattville Cityfest.   Come down to the Cityfest and show your support and say hello to the Dragoons at their booth from 8am-5pm on Saturday.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Prattville Progress Coverage of Dragoons Confederate Memorial Day Program

The Prattville Progress provided good coverage of the Dragoons SCV Camp 1524 Confederate Memorial Day program which was held at 6pm on Monday April 23rd at the Dragoons monuments at the Prattville Primary School.  The following is the article which includes some great quotes delivered by the camp officers:
"The crowds for the ceremonies might not be as large as they once were, but die-hard descendants of men who fought for the Confederacy in the Civil War say they will keep coming back to honor their forefathers and other CSA veterans as long as they can keep the flames of their heritage alive.
And they will continue to inform those who still listen about the history of the war, a history they say has been skewed and twisted by historians to paint the South as a land of racists and rebels.
“I pray that never again will our South face such an event as this,” said Tom Snowden, chaplain for Sons of Confederate Veterans Camp 1524, during the invocation for Monday’s Confederate Memorial Day observance in Prattville. “We pray that we can overcome reasons of political correctness and the distorted reasons that many hold today about the history of this war.”
Several officers of the organization gave brief speeches during the event. Stiff, gusty winds kept Confederate flags and coattails flapping throughout and sent the occasional cap or hat flying. The breezes didn’t sweep away the words that floated across the monument park located next to Prattville Primary School, though.
Tyrone Crowley presented a history of the Prattville Dragoons, the first local unit to join Rebel forces, pointing out that city founder Daniel Pratt not only supported the Southern cause, but armed, supplied and provided mounts for the local soldiers.
Crowley said an effort has been made to correct some of the errors and omissions related to the history of the War Between the States, a conflict for which he said the major catalyst was a situation similar to the one faced in America today.
“We believe the Confederate soldier has been vindicated,” he said. “If you listen to Tea Party speakers around the country, they sound very similar to what the South was saying before the Civil War, complaining about a federal government that is apparently limitless in its powers.”
Crowley noted, as other Monday speakers did, that the SCV is not a political organization. He did, however, take a political potshot at Gov. Robert Bentley, who was sworn into office on the January day set aside to honor both CSA Gen. Robert E. Lee and slain Civil Rights leader Martin Luther King Jr.
“As has been said, we are not a political organization in that we don’t recommend a particular party or promote any candidate,” he said during a quiet lull in the wind. “But we have to notice a great omission as I’m about to mention. In January of 2011, on a legally established holiday of the state over which he was assuming the governorship, not one single mention was made of the name Robert E. Lee, nor of the holiday in his honor during the whole inauguration ceremony by anyone who took part in the ceremony.”
Monday’s local observance included SCV members and an honor guard of butternut-clad re-enactors. The event was attended by about two dozen “civilians,” including Prattville Mayor Bill Gillespie Jr. and Autauga County Commissioner Sid Thompson, neither of whom participated in the ceremony.
Mack Clark and Bill Stone, members of the local Sons of the American Revolution chapter, were among those in attendance.
“The SAR and SCV are both heritage organizations,” said Stone, while Clark added that “a lot of our goals are similar.”
Harold Grooms, the local SCV camp’s first lieutenant commander, opened his short speech with “an old Army poem” that mentioned the dwindling support for soldiers and God, then pointed out that the poetry didn’t apply in Prattville and Autauga County.
“That’s true of many places,” he said upon completion of his poetic recital. “I’m proud to say that here, in what we call the Preferred Community, that can’t be said. Look around you at the number of houses of worship we have here; try to come down here on Sunday and find a place to park. This is a good thing. As far as the soldier being slighted, your presence here today denies that.”
After SCV 1524 Commander Chris Booth introduced some of the organization’s officers, and Snowden provided the benedictory prayer, Grooms and the preacher led the small crowd in a rousing rendition of “Dixie” that traditionally marks the end of the event."

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Upcoming Alabama Statewide Events of Interest for Confederate Heritage

A perusal of the Alabama Tourism Department Sweet Home Alabama statewide Calendar of Events for May include some events of interest for Confederate heritage supporters. 
Orrville | May 5, 2012
May 5, Orville Civil War Walking Tour 334-872-8058. Fee for participants only. Old Cahawba Archaeological Park--Travel back in time through some of Cahawba's most intriguing stories.10-11 a.m.
Prattville | May 4-5, 2012
May 4-5, Prattville Prattville Cityfest 334-365-7392. Admission charged. Historic Downtown Prattville--Arts and crafts show with food, fun and entertainment. Children's Area. Free Concert on Friday. The Prattville Dragoons will be manning a table with SCV and camp information and offering Confederate sutlery.  Fri., 7-11 p.m.; Sat., 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
McCalla | May 26-27, 2012
May 26-27, McCalla Tannehill Civil War Reenactment 205-477-5711. Admission charged. Tannehill Ironworks Historical State Park—Tannehill and the Alabama State Militia Artillery will host the Civil War Battle and Living History Reenactment. More than 500 reenactors. Camps open at 9 a.m.; battles, 2 p.m.