Rather than a traditional biography, I thought it would be fun to create a thread of anecdotes - either stories others told about D H Hill or stories he told about others. As a founding member of the Official D H Hill Fan Club, I felt it my duty and obligation to start this thread. I realize that D H Hill is not a "popular" choice for many. There are just a handful of members of the fan club. But I hope that many contributors will post anecdotes in this thread.
Confederate Lieutenant General Daniel Harvey Hill, more commonly known as D. H. Hill, was born 12 July 1821 at Hill's Iron Works, in York District, South Carolina. His parents, Solomon and Nancy Cabeen Hill. His paternal grandfather, Col. William "Billy" Hill, an Irish immigrant who operated an iron works which manufactured cannon for the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War. His maternal grandfather was a Scottish immigrant. Daniel Harvey Hill was West Point educated, abrasive, demanding, a strict disciplinarian, deeply religious, sometimes brilliant, sometimes not. I've always found his dry sarcastic wit endearing.
Here's one of my favorite examples of Hill's tactful sarcasm. Writing to Jubal A Early in response to Early's request for information for use in his memoirs, D H Hill writes:
"In comparing my statistics with yours in my address, I wished to say, "General Early knows more of Confederate history than any man now living, probably for the reason that he has never moved out of the Confederacy"--but I know you did not like some haversack anecdotes which were entirely to your credit, and which endeared you to thousands of our people. You were so fortunate, or unfortunate, as to be considered the wittiest man in the army and doubtless many clever and witty things were put upon you in consequence."
Now, it seems to me you'd have to read that and easily understand Hill's intent? Knowing that Jubal Early was reversed at Cedar Creek; lost the confidence of his army; and was removed from command by General Lee? But apparently Early missed Hill's sarcasm? Early was evidently so flattered that he included the comment in his own memoirs entitled Lieutenant General Jubal Anderson Early C.S.A. Autobiographical Sketch and Narrative of the War Between the States.
Here's a funny story Hill told as part of an address he delivered on Oct. 22, 1885 before the Reunion of the Virginia Division, A. N. V. Association:
At Yorktown, a colonel called out his regiment, formed it in line and began to scold the men sav-agely for some breach of discipline. In the midst of his vituperation a donkey began an unmerciful bray, when a unanimous shout came up from the impenitent and sorrowless gray-coats, " Hold on. Colonel, one at a time, one at a time." There is a delicacy of insinuation about this reply, which makes it unsurpassed and unsurpassable. No! I was not that colonel....
And here's a snip from a "noble and eloquent tribute" to the memory of D H Hill. Originally published in the The Charleston News and Courier, the piece was reprinted in the Charlotte Democrat on October 4, 1889, about a week after his death.
The Charlotte Democrat., October 04, 1889, page 3.
Please add your favorite D H Hill anecdotes, in celebration of his birthday July 12th. @OldReliable1862 @BillO @Nathanb1 @luinrina @RochesterBill @Stony
OP Image from: Elements of Algebra, D H Hill, J.B. Lippincott, 1857, p. 124.