Abbeville Institute on Black Confederates

Andersonh1

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Thanks for sharing this. If I were to cite the two main points of my arguments, they would be these:

- "it bears repeating that the belief in black Confederate soldiers was not invented by white men desperate to downplay slavery and push “lost cause” history. It was based, at least in part, on two things: newspaper editors who were willing to publish the accounts, and the very public actions of the black population themselves. "

- "a belief in black Confederates has existed for as long as the history of the war has been written."
 

Carronade

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- "it bears repeating that the belief in black Confederate soldiers was not invented by white men desperate to downplay slavery and push “lost cause” history. It was based, at least in part, on two things: newspaper editors who were willing to publish the accounts, and the very public actions of the black population themselves. "

Not invented, but exaggerated. Let's be honest, there are people who distort the history of black Confederates to bolster their argument that the war was not at all about slavery.
 

Andersonh1

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Not invented, but exaggerated. Let's be honest, there are people who distort the history of black Confederates to bolster their argument that the war was not at all about slavery.

True, it happens now and certainly there was exaggeration and rumors during the war that did not always accurately convey the nature of black support or participation on the side of the South. Still, I think it's clear that the genesis of the belief in black Confederates and black Confederate soldiers began when the free black population took action in support of their states and then later the Confederacy, and that action was made public in the news of the day.

The main thing I tried to do with this article was to explore where some of these beliefs about black Confederates came from in the first place, and to establish that it's an idea as old as the war itself. Not all beliefs about black Confederates originated in misunderstandings about the slaves that accompanied the CS army, for example. And the end of the war did not end these ideas. They persisted and have continued to persist ever since, with varying levels of prominence.
 
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Viper21

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Not invented, but exaggerated. Let's be honest, there are people who distort the history of black Confederates to bolster their argument that the war was not at all about slavery.
I think the majority of people who study the war don't. Instead, just focus on the examples, as it is an interesting subject matter. There are distinct differences between those of us who are seriously interested in the era, vs folks pushing memes on social media.

There is also a difference between finding humor in a meme or catchy phrase vs. pushing propaganda as historical fact. On the other hand, you have plenty of folks that don't want to discuss this issue at all. The folks calling the existence of Black Confederates a myth, aren't being 100% honest either.

I hear this claim, "to bolster their argument that the war was not at all about slavery.", often. Yet, I rarely see it in action by anyone serious about the subject.

Is it possible to have honest discussion on the subject, without a nefarious agenda..? Is it possible to point out, or look at some of the glaring evidence out there without, other motives than the subject itself..?

I continue to be amazed at how many folks, are so triggered by the topic, they refuse to even entertain discussion on the topic. Unless, it's to ridicule the claims, evidence, & those presenting it. :O o:
 
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I think the majority of people who study the war don't. Instead, just focus on the examples, as it is an interesting subject matter. There are distinct differences between those of us who are seriously interested in the era, vs folks pushing memes on social media.

There is also a difference between finding humor in a meme or catchy phrase vs. pushing propaganda as historical fact. On the other hand, you have plenty of folks that don't want to discuss this issue at all. The folks calling the existence of Black Confederates a myth, aren't being 100% honest either.

I hear this claim, "to bolster their argument that the war was not at all about slavery.", often. Yet, I rarely see it in action by anyone serious about the subject.

Is it possible to have honest discussion on the subject, without a nefarious agenda..? Is it possible to point out, or look at some of the glaring evidence out there without, other motives than the subject itself..?

I continue to be amazed at how many folks, are so triggered by the topic, they refuse to even entertain discussion on the topic. Unless, it's to ridicule the claims, evidence, & those presenting it. :O o:

At the Vicksburg visitor center the ranger made a point of mentioning women who fought in drag as men during the war......they existed, it was probally as rare or even rarer numbers then Black Confederates, there been posts here about Muslims in the CW, though it seems only about 300 combined on both sides. Not sure why if the others can be discussed as interesting aberrations, why Black Confederates should meet opposition or even denial to historical discussion that the other rare instances dont seem to.

The evidence I cant deny is blacks attending the Confederate reunions, it tells me two things......that no matter what we think, they thought they had served, and were proud of it.
 

Viper21

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At the Vicksburg visitor center the ranger made a point of mentioning women who fought in drag as men during the war......they existed, it was probally as rare or even rarer numbers then Black Confederates, there been posts here about Muslims in the CW, though it seems only about 300 combined on both sides. Not sure why if the others can be discussed as interesting aberrations, why Black Confederates should meet opposition or even denial to historical discussion that the other rare instances dont seem to.

The evidence I cant deny is blacks attending the Confederate reunions, it tells me two things......that no matter what we think, they thought they had served, and were proud of it.
Exactly. Couldn't agree more.

Modern ideology, & activism is where the problem is. History should be approached from an apolitical viewpoint. Too many folks are unable, or unwilling to take this approach.
 

CLuckJD

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...{B]elief in black Confederates and ... began when ... free black(s) took action in support of ... the Confederacy, and that action was made public in the news of the day.
Undoubtedly correct, given those lies and popular belief in them coincides with CW commencement. After some reflection on this same question, I came up with not even one pre-war press reference to Black confederates. But no lack exists that vilify Black men by every means possible. This itself seems to confess Black confederates are fictional vs. factual. Why else did traditional reports to vilify Black men or women by any means possible undergo a shift in paradigm so rapidly and radically for its time? Catering to wistful southern myths that victims were happy, willing participants in their oppression. This becomes far more likely in view of Black freemen's prior treatment and relative tiny handful of these outcasts who did acts THAT supported, not "IN support OF" rebels. You wrote the 2nd version meant to denote true loyalty or altruistic drive to assist. My revision is purely incidental by definition. Mere positive impact is not clear evidence of true motives that underlie any act. Many acts benefit another have other intent behind them. Just as a few slaveholders were an exception to the rule by fear and oppression, there must have been some Black freedmen with families scattered here or yonder and thus not so big a fool to dare question existing status quo with more care for their own continued existence. And, passive resistance is often far more effective than overt aggression. One prime example is Mary Bowser, a freedwoman who served as Jefferson's "dutiful house slave" and Union spy at the same time.

...(E)nd of war did not end these ideas ... {that} persisted ... ever since...
And no doubt will persist until time ends for all mankind. Like all legends or myths, Black confederates exist in the mind of Lost Cause Denialists. But minds are dependent on myths they cut whole cloth or spin from thin air, since collective denial is a vital defense against brute force psych attack by hard-core fact or unadulterated truth. And psych defenses act much as bio immune systems react in direct proportion to external threat severity. The more one confronts or compels, the stronger it resists and longer it repels. So, this big lie won't die unless no creator, facilitator or self-perpetuator exists.
 

CLuckJD

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I have no doubt that there were black Confederates. Similarly I have no doubt they were few in number.
You are one of very few white proponents of "Black confederates" theory or any other topics on this site who has my respect. So, I ask that you clarify your definition for "Confederates" of whatever color. I suspect that is root cause of this debate. Tnx. I await your reply with bated breath :smile:.
 
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thomas aagaard

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Not sure why if the others can be discussed as interesting aberrations, why Black Confederates should meet opposition or even denial to historical discussion that the other rare instances dont seem to.
Because no one claim that 10.000, 50.000, 100.000 or 200.000 women or Muslims enlisted and fought during the war.

And I have seen no one falsify evidence that they did*... unlike the falsified evidence of Black confederates.

And the legal status of women or Muslims was in no way the cause of secession or the war.
The question of slavery was central to why the war happened.



*other than a case or two of women who lived back then who did claim they fought.. when they did not.
 

thomas aagaard

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Modern ideology, & activism is where the problem is. History should be approached from an apolitical viewpoint. Too many folks are unable, or unwilling to take this approach.
and that is why no one serious about history should ever link to or use the Abbeville institute in any way.

It is an organization that is all about a modern political interpretation of the war and their work is, in their own word about "southern tradition"... and it is not about actual history.
 
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Because no one claim that 10.000, 50.000, 100.000 or 200.000 women or Muslims enlisted and fought during the war.

And I have seen no one falsify evidence that they did*... unlike the falsified evidence of Black confederates.

And the legal status of women or Muslims was in no way the cause of secession or the war.
The question of slavery was central to why the war happened.



*other than a case or two of women who lived back then who did claim they fought.. when they did not.
That the question of slavery was central to the CW no more pertains to blacks who chose to serve the confederacy, then it does to women or muslims, Nor does a few people making outlandish claims detract from the vast majority who acknowledge only limited numbers......

I would agree the falsified claims of there were no black confederates or that is a myth, when evidence clearly exists there were least limited instances isnt helpful to any honest discussion. And just has them lose as much credibility as those claiming exaggerated numbers, on that I do agree you have a valid point.

It does seem silly that anyone if they think a claim is falsely exaggerated, would think the proper response would be an equally false exaggerated claim
 
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CLuckJD

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Is it possible to have honest discussion on the subject, without a nefarious agenda..? ...(O)r look at some of the glaring evidence out there without, other motives ..?
No. Unless one source is found to stand on neutral ground presents all evidence in mutual fairness and squareness for both sides of this fence. But good luck finding such forua; emotions run much too high all around. There lies the problem so far as I can see. Practical impossibility of discussion by anyone with any motive but nefarity or instinctive backlash. Let us try to put substantive differences aside for a split nanosec and reflect on process. What's most probable cause of why anyone has now become so adamant that Black confederates did exist long ago? Who are most frequent first responders by what hard counterattack line? Finally, review individual or group identities on each side and their unique but very distinct positions. You no doubt figured out why there is very low hope for a true fair analysis of this issue.
 

CLuckJD

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That the question of slavery was central to CW ... pertains to blacks who chose to serve the confederacy {no more} then {sic} ... to women or muslims.
Oh? How so, when those whose lives and liberty were at stake chose foes v. allies? Don't you find this far more peculiar than likewise situated others who might empathize take up a fight with primary stakeholders? That is also why 'Black confederates' incite especial vehement contention. Not to mention very high-voltage emotional backlash by opposition. What's your guess for how Jewish folks would most likely react to neo-Nazis' allegation that concentration camp inmates assisted mass execution of fellow innocents? Even if Nazi claims were true? (As I understand is in fact true of very few rare sellout cases you can count on less than one hand).

Nor does a few making outlandish claims detract from vast majority who acknowledge limited numbers......
. True! But do vast majority acknowledge limited numbers far more than a few make outlandish claims?

It seems silly for anyone who thinks a claim is falsely exaggerated...{to make} equally false exaggerated claims in reply
We agree 1000% But I don't understand how any sane mind can find MORE exaggeration of an exaggerated claim to gain credibility. Ex: Suppose I think 1X may have done Y. How can I rationally say 100X did Y to oppose your claim that 10X did Y?
 
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Oh? How so, when those whose lives and liberty were at stake choose to serve foes v friends? Don't you find this far more peculiar than likewise situated 3rd parties who might sympathize with primary stakeholders and take up a fight? The obvious reply is why 'Black confederates' incite especially vehement dissension. Not to mention very high level of emotionally charged backlash by opposition. What's your guess for how Jewish people would react to neo-Nazis' allegation that many concentration camp inmates assisted in mass execution of fellow innocents? Even if such claims were true? (As I understand is in fact true of very few cases you can count on less than one hand).

True enough. But do the vast majority acknowledge limited numbers? Or make outlandish claims?

I agree wholeheartedly. But don't understand how any sane mind can find MORE exaggeration of an exaggerated false claim help to gain credibility. IOW, suppose I think just 1x may have done Y. Can I rationally say, "1,000 Xs did Y!" to oppose your view that 100 Xs did Y?
Because in many cases such as LNG which is repeated mentioned by both sides, they were already free blacks, the north wasn't giving them anything they didn't already have.....however they could very lose what they had in property, ability to provide for family, or access to visit their family........I just watched an author who noted USCT weren't fighting for the nation (the US) but for their freedom, its why they were willing to desert the US........so why would they fight against what they already had? Just as they previously been willing to fight against the US and for Britain in 1812.

As I have noted from the majority of what I have read and heard, the majority I've seen acknowledges limited numbers and neither clams it was widespread or non existent. So I can say in my experience, no the majority doesn't seem to make the outlandish claims.

To claim something was non existent is as false or outlandish as it is to claim something was more widespread then it actually was.
 
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CLuckJD

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...{B]elief in black Confederates and ... began when ... free black(s) took action in support of ... the Confederacy, and that action was made public in the news of the day.
Undoubtedly correct, given rise of those popular beliefs arose in time that coincides with CWthose lies arose during a time that coincides those lies and popular belief in them coincides with CW commencement. After some reflection on this same question, I came up with not even one pre-war press reference to Black confederates. But no lack exists that vilify Black men by every means possible. This itself seems to confess Black confederates are fictional vs. factual. Why else did traditional reports to vilify Black men or women by any means possible undergo a shift in paradigm so rapidly and radically for its time? Catering to wistful southern myths that victims were happy, willing participants in their oppression. This becomes far more likely in view of Black freemen's prior treatment and relative tiny handful of these outcasts who did acts THAT supported, not "IN support OF" rebels. You wrote the 2nd version meant to denote true loyalty or altruistic drive to assist. My revision is purely incidental by definition. Mere positive impact is not clear evidence of true motives that underlie any act. Many acts benefit another have other intent behind them. Just as a few slaveholders were an exception to the rule by fear and oppression, there must have been some Black freedmen with families scattered here or yonder and thus not so big a fool to dare question existing status quo with more care for their own continued existence. And, passive resistance is often far more effective than overt aggression. One prime example is Mary Bowser, a freedwoman who served as Jefferson's "dutiful house slave" and Union spy at the same time.

...(E)nd of war did not end these ideas ... {that} persisted ... ever since...
And no doubt will persist until time ends for all mankind. Like all legends or myths, Black confederates exist in the mind of Lost Cause Denialists. But minds are dependent on myths they cut whole cloth or spin from thin air, since collective denial is a vital defense against brute force psych attack by hard-core fact or unadulterated truth. And psych defenses act much as bio immune systems react in direct proportion to external threat severity. The more one confronts or compels, the stronger it resists and longer it repels. So, this big lie won't die unless no creator, facilitator or self-perpetuator exists.
 

thomas aagaard

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I would agree the falsified claims of there were no black confederates or that is a myth, when evidence clearly exists there were least limited instances isnt helpful to any honest discussion. And just has them lose as much credibility as those claiming exaggerated numbers, on that I do agree you have a valid point.
You are confusing the word claim with evidence.
You can't make false evidence that something don't exist... since you can't prove a negative.

But people have falsified evidence that BC did exist. (backing up a positive with falsified evidence)
Like this:
black-confeds-400x290.jpg
 

Viper21

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No. Unless one source is found to stand on neutral ground presents all evidence in mutual fairness and squareness for both sides of this fence. But good luck finding such forua; emotions run much too high all around. There lies the problem so far as I can see. Practical impossibility of discussion by anyone with any motive but nefarity or instinctive backlash. Let us try to put substantive differences aside for a split nanosec and reflect on process. What's most probable cause of why anyone has now become so adamant that Black confederates did exist long ago? Who are most frequent first responders by what hard counterattack line? Finally, review individual or group identities on each side and their unique but very distinct positions. You no doubt figured out why there is very low hope for a true fair analysis of this issue.
Absolute truth, is neutral. Subjective interpretation is where the problem lies.

The historical record is clear. There were some Black men in grey. Some of these men were freemen. <--- absolute truth. Attempting to interpret their motivations, is subjective, & where the issues of the subject are born.

To claim these men a myth, or that they didn't exist isn't historically accurate.
 
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