Discussion Frederick Douglass id's he cause of death of Robert E Lee in 1870

leftyhunter

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Joined
May 27, 2011
Location
los angeles ca
Just as not all former yankees were in favor of racial equality [e.g. Lincoln, Sherman]
Lincoln was evolving on the equality issue and was head and shoulders far more advanced the Lee or Davis. Sherman for all of his faults freed slaves especially by shortening the war by his March through Georgia.
Also
From Butlers autobiography:
"If these black soldiers of ours go back to the South I am afraid that they will be but little better off with their masters than they were before, and yet they will be free men. I fear a race war, and it will be at least a guerilla war because we have taught these men how to fight. All the arms of the South are now in the hands of their troops, and when we capture them we of course will take their arms. There are plenty of men in the North who will furnish the negroes with arms if there is any oppression of them by their late masters.

"I wish you would carefully examine the question and give me your views upon it and go into the figures, as you did before in some degree, so as to show whether the negroes can be exported. I wish also you would give me any views that you have as to how to deal with the negro troops after the war. Some people think that we shall have trouble with our white troops after they are disbanded, but I don't anticipate anything of that sort, for all the intelligent men among them were good citizens or they would not have been good soldiers. But the question of the colored troops troubles me exceedingly. I wish you would do this as soon as you can, because I am to go down to City Point shortly and may meet negotiators for peace there, and I may want to talk this matter over with General Grant if he isn't too busy."
Butler's Book, pg. 903
Also @RobertP ,
The above quote doesn't mean Lincoln approved a Colonization scheme only he was asked to give his thoughts on it.
Leftyhunter
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2011
Location
mo
Prophetic.
How so? The race war Butler was talking about was armed blacks waging guerrilla war on the south....that didn't seem to happen on much a scale at all.

"I fear a race war, and it will be at least a guerilla war because we have taught these men how to fight. All the arms of the South are now in the hands of their troops, and when we capture them we of course will take their arms. There are plenty of men in the North who will furnish the negroes with arms if there is any oppression of them by their late masters."

Not very prophetic at all. If anything the opposite occured...nor was his vision of blacks being possibly "exported" to avoid a race war realized.......
 

DanSBHawk

1st Lieutenant
Joined
May 8, 2015
Location
Wisconsin
How so? The race war Butler was talking about was armed blacks waging guerrilla war on the south....that didn't seem to happen on much a scale at all.

"I fear a race war, and it will be at least a guerilla war because we have taught these men how to fight. All the arms of the South are now in the hands of their troops, and when we capture them we of course will take their arms. There are plenty of men in the North who will furnish the negroes with arms if there is any oppression of them by their late masters."

Not very prophetic at all. If anything the opposite occured...nor was his vision of blacks being possibly "exported" to avoid a race war realized.......
This is the part of the quote that I called prophetic:

From Butlers autobiography:​
"If these black soldiers of ours go back to the South I am afraid that they will be but little better off with their masters than they were before...​

Through Reconstruction and Jim Crow, every effort was made to keep blacks in a status little better than their status during slavery. I didn't comment on the rest of the Butler quote.
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2011
Location
mo
This is the part of the quote that I called prophetic:

From Butlers autobiography:​
"If these black soldiers of ours go back to the South I am afraid that they will be but little better off with their masters than they were before...​

Through Reconstruction and Jim Crow, every effort was made to keep blacks in a status little better than their status during slavery. I didn't comment on the rest of the Butler quote.
That's hardly surprising as soldiers regardless of race returning home faced possible death or persecution if they had went against their local communities.

The rest of the quote was the actual focus of his quote however...the guerrilla war by blacks, northern support for one, and how to avoid it.....where he was wrong, then wrong, and finally wrong again........well colonization may have been the way to go as Lincoln and Grant seemed to like it as well as Butler, but it remains an unknown if it had been implemented.
 

DanSBHawk

1st Lieutenant
Joined
May 8, 2015
Location
Wisconsin
That's hardly surprising as soldiers regardless of race returning home faced possible death or persecution if they had went against their local communities.

The rest of the quote was the actual focus of his quote however...the guerrilla war by blacks, northern support for one, and how to avoid it.....where he was wrong, then wrong, and finally wrong again........well colonization may have been the way to go as Lincoln and Grant seemed to like it as well as Butler, but it remains an unknown if it had been implemented.
I disagree. The post-war experiences of black and white soldiers were not similar. Lincoln accurately predicted that blacks would continue to be persecuted.

The rest of the quote concerns a worrisome what-if scenario, with voluntary colonization as one potential solution.
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2011
Location
mo
I disagree. The post-war experiences of black and white soldiers were not similar. Lincoln accurately predicted that blacks would continue to be persecuted.

The rest of the quote concerns a worrisome what-if scenario, with voluntary colonization as one potential solution.
As one who lives in a border state, soldiers from both sides, regardless of race could face risks in returning to a divided community, in particular if the balance locally was skewed to the other side.
 

DanSBHawk

1st Lieutenant
Joined
May 8, 2015
Location
Wisconsin
As one who lives in a border state, soldiers from both sides, regardless of race could face risks in returning to a divided community, in particular if the balance locally was skewed to the other side.
Like I said. I disagree. There's no realistic comparison between what white soldiers faced post-war, and what blacks faced post war.
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2011
Location
mo
Like I said. I disagree. There's no realistic comparison between what white soldiers faced post-war, and what blacks faced post war.
And I agree to disagree, as anyone who leaves their local community....to fight against that community....then thinks they can return as if nothing happened isn't being very realistic.....Many that went north or south choose to stay there for that reason, others moved west.
 

DanSBHawk

1st Lieutenant
Joined
May 8, 2015
Location
Wisconsin
And I agree to disagree, as anyone who leaves their local community....to fight against that community....then thinks they can return as if nothing happened isn't being very realistic.....Many that went north or south choose to stay there for that reason, others moved west.
It wasn't just those blacks who fought against the south. All blacks in the post-war south were "little better off" than when enslaved.

Whites did not have that problem, regardless of which side they fought for.
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2011
Location
mo
It wasn't just those blacks who fought against the south. All blacks in the post-war south were "little better off" than when enslaved.

Whites did not have that problem, regardless of which side they fought for.
Yes I agreed, as southern whites who went north to fight, could also face risks if they returned postwar to the communities they had left........and vice versa....

Its remarkable reconciliation went as well as it did......but it could still be risky in divided areas. Why many didn't choose to return to those they had betrayed.
 
Last edited:

DanSBHawk

1st Lieutenant
Joined
May 8, 2015
Location
Wisconsin
Yes I agreed, as southern whites who went north to fight, could also face risks if they returned postwar to the communities they had left........and vice versa....

Its remarkable reconciliation went as well as it did......but it could still be risky in divided areas.
You seem to want to claim that white soldiers suffered as much as black soldiers post-war. But that's false. Black soldiers suffered post-war merely for being black. Whites did not have that issue.
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2011
Location
mo
You seem to want to claim that white soldiers suffered as much as black soldiers post-war. But that's false. Black soldiers suffered post-war merely for being black. Whites did not have that issue.
No simply stating fact, you seem to want to attach spin to it.

In any war, people who betray their community can often face retribution if they return to the community they abandoned. That has little to do with race, as white ex-soldiers indeed were killed postwar. I look at every case as an individual case, as they are.....
 

DanSBHawk

1st Lieutenant
Joined
May 8, 2015
Location
Wisconsin
No simply stating fact, you seem to want to attach spin to it.

In any war, people who betray their community can often face retribution if they return. That has little to do with race, as white ex-soldiers indeed were killed postwar.
No, to simply state the facts, any black in the post-war south, regardless whether they fought in the war and regardless of which side they fought for... was treated "little better" than when they were enslaved.

I don't understand why anyone would try to claim whites had it just as bad.
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2011
Location
mo
Your the only one making such a claim however, as your the only one trying to quantify it.....

I simply responded to your remark of Butler, in that its not especially prophetic to predict soldiers who had abandoned communities, might not be welcome if they returned........as that's rather universal and timeless through all wars

Then all Butlers predictions based off that, were off the mark.

But neither Butlers remarks or Douglas's have much to do with cause of Lee's death. So dont really see how it is tied in.
 

DanSBHawk

1st Lieutenant
Joined
May 8, 2015
Location
Wisconsin
Your the only one making such a claim however, as your the only one trying to quantify it.....

I simply responded your remark, in that its not especially prophetic to predict soldiers who had abandoned communities, might not be welcome if they returned........as that's rather universal and timeless through all wars
Lincoln did not say anything about "abandoning communities" and his quote did not even say that their soldier status would specifically be the reason they would be treated "little better."

It's because they were black that Lincoln was concerned.

Did Lincoln express the same concern for white southerners who fought for the Union? No, because it was about race. Period.
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2011
Location
mo
???? Lincoln? No one in the thread had quoted Lincoln........nor does it appear connected to Douglas's bitter rhetoric about someones death.

Lincoln had actually been dead quite some time, by the time of Lee's death.....

Butler did express some were also concerned about whites however.
 
Last edited:

Sgt. Tyree

Private
Joined
Apr 29, 2020
Location
Wyoming Territory
When I decide to march against my neighbors and family and burn my own hometown I'll join the Union - Jim :smile:
That sort of thing happened. Especially in the Appalachian regions and the Kansas/Missouri border. A man has to do what he believes is right. For some that meant standing with their region and neighbors. For others that meant standing for an ideal they thought was above kith and kin.
 
Last edited:
Top