Sherman with a baby in Atlanta

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Hi folks-

I recall recently reading of an incident in which Sherman is visiting with some Atlanta citizens (I think) and while holding a baby, Sherman essentially reiterates his "War is cruelty" statement.


Can anybody help me out with a citation for this event?

Thanks,

Kelly
 

johan_steele

Regimental Armorer
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Sherman was known to like children; enough so that on a couple of occasions he was seen to stop and visit with a mother and child as the army passed. On one occasion a staff officer hushed a passing Regt that was about to give the general three cheers as the baby in the mothers arms was sleeping.

On more than a few occasions it was said no house with a child ever needed a guard set and would as often as not have donations of rations set on their porch as the army marched past.
 

diane

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
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Sherman got along with Daisy Gordon, who later was Juliette Gordon Low, founder of the Girl Scouts. He stayed at her home near Savannah, she was only about 4 years old, and her father was in the CSA army - cavalry I think. Standing beside her mother, Daisy declared, "Gen Sherman, if my daddy was here he would not let you come in because he says you are the devil!" Sherman didn't miss a beat. "Do you think so? Where are my horns, then?" he said and got down on one knee so she could pat his head looking for the horns Not finding any, she decided maybe he was only a little devil and they hadn't come in yet!
 
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Well after far more searching and squinting than I'd like to admit, I finally tracked it down -- I've got a LOT of pdfs of old newspapers saved, and I figured it might be in one of the newspapers somewhere around September - November 1864....

From the November 23, 1864 Southern Banner from Athens, Georgia:

“[Sherman] took the little child of my friend in his arms and patted her rosy cheeks, calling her a ‘poor little exile,’ and saying, ‘he was sorry to drive her away from her comfortable home, but that war was a cruel and inexorable thing, and its necessities compelled him to do many things, which he hardily regretted. In conversation with the lady, he paid a just and well merited tribute to the valor of our arms. He remarked, that it would be no disgrace to us, if we were finally subjugated—as we certainly would be—as we had fought against four or five times our number, with a degree of valor which had excited the admiration of the world; and that the United States government would gain no honor, nor credit, if they succeeded in their purposes, as they had thus far failed, with five men to one. He regarded the southern soldiers as the bravest in the world, and admitted that in a fair field fight, we could whip them two to our one; but he claimed for himself, and his compeers, the credit of possessing more strategic ability than our generals. ‘You can beat us fighting madam,’ said he, ‘but we can out maneuvre you; your generals do not work half enough; we work day and night, and spare no labor, nor pains, to carry out our plans.

Referring to his evacuation of the trenches around the city, he asked the lady if they did not all think he was retreating, and when she replied , that some did think so, he laughed heartily at the idea and remarked, ‘I played Hood a real good yankee trick, that time, didn’t I?’ He thought I was running away, but he soon had to pull up stakes and run himself.’"
 
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