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Did America Properly Remember the ACW?
Yes, I think that it's been properly observed.
I'm really not sure about this.
No, it's been a dismal remembrance.
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 Post subject: Fading Memorials?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 26, 2015 1:57 pm 
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The 150th anniversary of the surrender at Appomattox Court House will occur on April 9th, exactly two weeks from today. In your opinion has the nation as a whole celebrated this Sesquicentennial in the best tradition, or merely let it pass on by with little observance.

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General Jos. C. Meyer,
Union Army Chief of Staff
Commander, Army of the Shenandoah
(2011-2014 UA CoA/GinC)


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Last edited by Joe Meyer on Fri Mar 27, 2015 1:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Fading Memorials?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 26, 2015 8:15 pm 
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As a nation, we are too politically correct to observe the Sesquicentennial in the "best tradition." For the hundredth, we did. I guess that set the tradition bar. Back then, battle observances competed for the public's attention against civil rights marches.
Now, communities were discouraged from making too big a deal of an event because all the old issues come up: The Confederate battle flag, even the question of whether descendants of slaves need to be compensated for what was done to them, and on and on.
In my opinion, with 600,000 men dead, most of them white, the compensation was paid in blood, and we need to move on. As for the flag, it was the symbol of a nation that fought to preserve slavery for only four years, while the other flag, the one we know and love, preserved it for fourscore and seven years, and yet we have no plans to outlaw that one. I thnk, rather, that there should be laws protecting both flags, and laws against using either one as emblems by parties with extremist views.
Hopefully all this will be forgotten by 2061, and we can have an observance in the best tradition once more. I'm looking forward to it. As for this one, we could have done better.
John Ferry
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 Post subject: Re: Fading Memorials?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 26, 2015 9:37 pm 
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I think there's a lot that plays into this. History is taught now from the political, social & economic standpoint overall, even college level, professors tend to focus on these aspects and not so much actual fighting of battles, in any war, not just the ACW. Why?? Because to get folks interested, it has to be something that relates to them and the clash of arms of any kind is something most people don't get or care about. Not much in their lives they can relate to. Now folks might be more interested in things such as the medicine or nursing related aspect, economic parts, the way it impacted the home front, stuff like that....things people can wrap their heads around. I know when I talk about it with folks who are not as interested, that's what makes their eyes light up a bit. You have to speak to your audience.

Then there are deeper issues, most of the country came after the war. The vast amounts of immigrants that came after and especially those who come today, which are mostly non-European, have no connection to it at all. Also the ethnic makeup of the country is changing at a quicker rate than in the past. By the time of 2061, if projections stay as is, most of the country will be of another race or multi-racial....which the statement that 600,000 men dead, most of them white, reinforces the beliefs that most other ethnic groups have of it as a white mans war. Then you have to examine the post war experience of many groups in the country, not just blacks, but also southerners and others components of the post war shakeup. The debate over what the war was really about will either drive folks toward it or send them running away.....

I think it is telling, that at the (not so) new Gettysburg visitors center, as you walk through things, before you get to the last and final section which discusses the more contentious issues of race and many of the things that we still grapple with, there is an optional exit you can take. The only one in the whole museum. It is metaphorical in many ways, as an option to skip over the discussion on the issues not so easily digested and discussed by most, regardless of ethnicity. Until that optional skip is addressed, folks will take the conflict or leave it on their own accord.

Overall though, there was a lot for folks to attend, see & do. Maybe not in every part of the land, but in areas where vast parts of the war was fought, especially here in Southern PA, DC, MD & Northern VA where the largest chunks of battlefields are intact, the Federal records & institutes are available for lectures & programs, many of the Park Service & Battlefields had a lot going on. There even was a multi year event related to railroads in the ACW too. I am sure there was a lot more around the country too, you just had to look around.

It is a polarizing conflict though and I think will continue to head that way, for better or for worse, depending on who you ask.......

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General Scott Ludwig
Commanding Officer & Chief of the Armies (CoA) of the Confederate States of America (CSA)

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 Post subject: Re: Fading Memorials?
PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2015 2:43 pm 
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For those of you who haven't logged in to vote in this poll or to see the current results, here they are.

Thirteen voters.

No one thinks that the anniversary has been properly observed.

Four are not certain.

Nine say its been a poor display.

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General Jos. C. Meyer,
Union Army Chief of Staff
Commander, Army of the Shenandoah
(2011-2014 UA CoA/GinC)


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 Post subject: Re: Fading Memorials?
PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2015 6:05 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 22, 2001 4:51 pm
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Location: Massachusetts, USA
Those interested in the preservation of the battlefields can go to:
http://www.civilwar.org/

Civil War Preservation for information.

Also check:
http://www.cvbt.org/

Central Virginia Battlefields Trust

And:
http://www.blueandgrayeducation.org/

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General Ernie Sands
President ACWGC -Sept 2015
Western Theater, Commander, USA
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