What Was In The Mind Of Most Of The Confederate Soldiers As To Why They Were Fighting And Willing To Die?

GwilymT

First Sergeant
Joined
Aug 20, 2018
Location
Pittsburgh
At the end of the day, I suppose that the justness of a cause is strictly a matter of opinion.
“Our Cause is thoroughly identified with the institution of slavery”

Is it your opinion that Mississippi had a just cause in seceding? They told us quite clearly why the did so.
 

uaskme

2nd Lieutenant
Joined
Nov 9, 2016
Location
SE Tennessee
It was the cornerstone of the confederacy.

If you want to reduce the War to a Causation of Race and White Supremacy. The North was just as Guilty as the South. Racial Attitudes were the Same.

Yankees refused to let Blacks participate. Called it a White Man’s fight. Rejected the premise of raising Blacks Political, Economic or Humanity. McClellan refused to touch Slavery. Attitude prevalent in the North. Finally after an extended period of military reverses. Clearly as a Military Objective, Slavery and Emancipation become issues. Vast Majority of Northerners did not equate Emancipation with a Humanitarian goal for Blacks. Just the Opposite. Most thought it was a way to get Rid of Blacks. North had no intention of upsetting their Lilly White Institutions. That is what Yankee Soldiers fought for. Same thing Lincoln repeatedly Claimed.

160 years latter, it was all about saving the Negro. Simply Silly. It is a Yankee Myth.

Cotton States seceded over the protection of Slavery, among other stated principles. War started 5 months latter. Lot of things happened in those 5 months. North Invaded the South among them. Upper South clearly stated that Protecting their homes were the Number 1 goal of Choosing a side. Clearly after the War had already started.
 

unionblue

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Member of the Year
Joined
Feb 20, 2005
Location
Ocala, FL (as of December, 2015).
So, the Yankees fought to keep their 99% pure White Society White.

Was that a Bad Cause?

Who had the Race War. Hint, it wasn’t the Confederacy!
If you want to reduce the War to a Causation of Race and White Supremacy. The North was just as Guilty as the South. Racial Attitudes were the Same.

Yankees refused to let Blacks participate. Called it a White Man’s fight. Rejected the premise of raising Blacks Political, Economic or Humanity. McClellan refused to touch Slavery. Attitude prevalent in the North. Finally after an extended period of military reverses. Clearly as a Military Objective, Slavery and Emancipation become issues. Vast Majority of Northerners did not equate Emancipation with a Humanitarian goal for Blacks. Just the Opposite. Most thought it was a way to get Rid of Blacks. North had no intention of upsetting their Lilly White Institutions. That is what Yankee Soldiers fought for. Same thing Lincoln repeatedly Claimed.

160 years latter, it was all about saving the Negro. Simply Silly. It is a Yankee Myth.

Cotton States seceded over the protection of Slavery, among other stated principles. War started 5 months latter. Lot of things happened in those 5 months. North Invaded the South among them. Upper South clearly stated that Protecting their homes were the Number 1 goal of Choosing a side. Clearly after the War had already started.

@uaskme ,

You know, I agreed with almost 95% of your above two posts. There is no way I can defend the idea that Northern whites were fighting for freedom for the slave or that they were fighting for equal rights for blacks. Just wasn't the attitude of the majority of the white population of the entire United States at the time.

And you're correct when you state above that the Cotton States seceded over "the protection of slavery," but you still couldn't resist pasting on "other stated principles," keeping the back door open for other excuses for secession. No problem, for me at least, at least you got the principle problem out in the open at last.

No, not too much I can argue with or deny, as you got about 95% right on the attitudes of McClellan, the attitude of the North, even to the idea over why blacks were enlisted in the Union army.

Where I think you go a bit off the rails is the idea that the Union army maintained such an attitude as it fought it's way further into the slaveholding States, seeing the institution up close and personal. Most of these white Western troops had never seen blacks before or seen how slavery was administered. Changed the attitudes of quite a few of them. While not turning these men into raving John Brown's, it did convince them the institution had to go so it could never bring about another conflict on it remaining a Peculiar institution" harming the nation in the future.

Also, I think you got your directions confused over the supposed "Yankee" myth that it was all about "saving the Negro."

I agree, the North did not go to war to save the Negro. Not from the beginning, as it was all about saving the Union and remained so for much of the war. But you have to be aware, and from your two posts above I get the impression, it was the slaveholding South that was all about "saving the Negro" so that his unwilling participation in slavery could continue. Seems pretty plain to me, what with the paper trail left by Southern representatives and the Confederate leadership.

As for the Upper South proclaiming the protection of their homes as their no. 1 concern, I just don't get that from their secession journals. Again, that's because of all the attention noted in them to "saving the Negro" from abolition and other concerns about the institution.

Out of all the causes white Southerners could have fought for, the preservation of slavery was "a Bad Cause."

Until our next post,
Unionblue
 

BuckeyeWarrior

Sergeant
Joined
Jan 1, 2020
Location
Ohio
If you want to reduce the War to a Causation of Race and White Supremacy. The North was just as Guilty as the South. Racial Attitudes were the Same.

Yankees refused to let Blacks participate. Called it a White Man’s fight. Rejected the premise of raising Blacks Political, Economic or Humanity. McClellan refused to touch Slavery. Attitude prevalent in the North. Finally after an extended period of military reverses. Clearly as a Military Objective, Slavery and Emancipation become issues. Vast Majority of Northerners did not equate Emancipation with a Humanitarian goal for Blacks. Just the Opposite. Most thought it was a way to get Rid of Blacks. North had no intention of upsetting their Lilly White Institutions. That is what Yankee Soldiers fought for. Same thing Lincoln repeatedly Claimed.

160 years latter, it was all about saving the Negro. Simply Silly. It is a Yankee Myth.

Cotton States seceded over the protection of Slavery, among other stated principles. War started 5 months latter. Lot of things happened in those 5 months. North Invaded the South among them. Upper South clearly stated that Protecting their homes were the Number 1 goal of Choosing a side. Clearly after the War had already started.
Your right that many in the north had the same or similar views to those in the south. But the north was the only place we’re anyone had views that slavery should be ended or that black males should have full social and political rights as white males.

Your repeated attempts to paint a false equivalency between the rebels and American do not hold up to scrutiny. We can see the most glaring example of the moral chasm between the rebels and America by looking at quotes from their leaders.

“African slavery, as it exists in the United States, is a moral, a social, and a political blessing.”
Jefferson Davis

“If slavery is not wrong, nothing is wrong.”
Abraham Lincoln

If you can’t see the great moral difference between those two statements than your moral compass is off.
 

uaskme

2nd Lieutenant
Joined
Nov 9, 2016
Location
SE Tennessee
@uaskme ,

You know, I agreed with almost 95% of your above two posts. There is no way I can defend the idea that Northern whites were fighting for freedom for the slave or that they were fighting for equal rights for blacks. Just wasn't the attitude of the majority of the white population of the entire United States at the time.

And you're correct when you state above that the Cotton States seceded over "the protection of slavery," but you still couldn't resist pasting on "other stated principles," keeping the back door open for other excuses for secession. No problem, for me at least, at least you got the principle problem out in the open at last.

No, not too much I can argue with or deny, as you got about 95% right on the attitudes of McClellan, the attitude of the North, even to the idea over why blacks were enlisted in the Union army.

Where I think you go a bit off the rails is the idea that the Union army maintained such an attitude as it fought it's way further into the slaveholding States, seeing the institution up close and personal. Most of these white Western troops had never seen blacks before or seen how slavery was administered. Changed the attitudes of quite a few of them. While not turning these men into raving John Brown's, it did convince them the institution had to go so it could never bring about another conflict on it remaining a Peculiar institution" harming the nation in the future.

Also, I think you got your directions confused over the supposed "Yankee" myth that it was all about "saving the Negro."

I agree, the North did not go to war to save the Negro. Not from the beginning, as it was all about saving the Union and remained so for much of the war. But you have to be aware, and from your two posts above I get the impression, it was the slaveholding South that was all about "saving the Negro" so that his unwilling participation in slavery could continue. Seems pretty plain to me, what with the paper trail left by Southern representatives and the Confederate leadership.

As for the Upper South proclaiming the protection of their homes as their no. 1 concern, I just don't get that from their secession journals. Again, that's because of all the attention noted in them to "saving the Negro" from abolition and other concerns about the institution.

Out of all the causes white Southerners could have fought for, the preservation of slavery was "a Bad Cause."

Until our next post,
Unionblue


All we have to do is review Federal Policy toward the Slaves to determine What the Yankee Was Fighting For. Flawed Victory by William L Barney.

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uaskme

2nd Lieutenant
Joined
Nov 9, 2016
Location
SE Tennessee
There were Abolitionist in the South. Below is a Quote from a Northern Abolitionist. Samuel Gridley Howe. I think he missed that Black Male Equivalence thingy. Most White Abolitionist didn’t believe in Racial Equality with any other than White. Many Yankee Aristocrats didn’t think poor White immigrants deserved it. Flawed Victory by Barney.

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D113E605-A79F-45C9-BA5B-B8B63FC972F8.jpeg
 

unionblue

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Member of the Year
Joined
Feb 20, 2005
Location
Ocala, FL (as of December, 2015).
All we have to do is review Federal Policy toward the Slaves to determine What the Yankee Was Fighting For. Flawed Victory by William L Barney.

View attachment 393852

View attachment 393853
There were Abolitionist in the South. Below is a Quote from a Northern Abolitionist. Samuel Gridley Howe. I think he missed that Black Male Equivalence thingy. Most White Abolitionist didn’t believe in Racial Equality with any other than White. Many Yankee Aristocrats didn’t think poor White immigrants deserved it. Flawed Victory by Barney.

View attachment 393854

View attachment 393855
@uaskme ,

And this changes what in my previous post# 69 reply?

In trying to spread mud over this course of history, you are still ignoring the primary cause of the American Civil War.

I get that you are angry that the South of the time went to war and rebellion over slavery and is now coming to terms with that call.

But the point is, no one, not me or as far as I can tell, any other forum member is saying the North/Yankees/Union gets away clean in racial attitudes of the day or that there was any call to invite the former slaves to move up North or change relationships between whites and blacks.

What has to be admitted, as far as I am concerned, is the absolute fact that the South seceded over the issue of slavery in order to maintain it, protect it, even expand it, all at the expense of States Rights and a free and fair election.

It's simply historical fact that the slaveholding South was so concerned with slavery, it was at the top of it's racial and political agenda and therefore was considered important enough to begin a civil war and destroy a nation.

Unionblue
 

uaskme

2nd Lieutenant
Joined
Nov 9, 2016
Location
SE Tennessee
@uaskme ,

And this changes what in my previous post# 69 reply?

In trying to spread mud over this course of history, you are still ignoring the primary cause of the American Civil War.

I get that you are angry that the South of the time went to war and rebellion over slavery and is now coming to terms with that call.

But the point is, no one, not me or as far as I can tell, any other forum member is saying the North/Yankees/Union gets away clean in racial attitudes of the day or that there was any call to invite the former slaves to move up North or change relationships between whites and blacks.

What has to be admitted, as far as I am concerned, is the absolute fact that the South seceded over the issue of slavery in order to maintain it, protect it, even expand it, all at the expense of States Rights and a free and fair election.

It's simply historical fact that the slaveholding South was so concerned with slavery, it was at the top of it's racial and political agenda and therefore was considered important enough to begin a civil war and destroy a nation.

Unionblue
What you Fail to realize is that the North fought to keep Blacks and or any other Colored Peoples out of the Western Territories or in the North. Your forefathers fought for White Supremacy. They fought to keep Blacks out of their 99%, close to perfect White Institutions. Limiting Slavery left Western Territories for White Families. Lincoln‘s Words.

Thomas’s goal was to keep Blacks out of the North and on the Plantations. He, Sherman and most other Union military thought Slavery was the Natural Position of the Negro. All of this Federal Government fighting for some Black Rights is a Yankee Myth. Northern Racial attitudes did not change during the War.

Lincoln took the Position that Blacks should have some basic rights had more to do with Forming a Political Party based on Limiting the Expansion of Slavery. Northern Racist were concerned about what Slavery did to Northern Whites and little about what it did to Negroes. Slavery gave the South Political Power and Slaves gave them the ability to Farm and Fight at the same time. This is the reason Lincoln finally agreed to issue the EP, to take manpower away from the South. Purely as a War Measure. Also let Negroes die in the place of Northern White Racist. A two fer. They also paid Negroes half wages and no Bounties until late in the War. So, they died cheaper than Whites. Mostly used them where they couldn’t get White soldiers to go. Many Negroes grew Yankee Cotton. Majority didn’t get paid and were treated as Slaves.

So, no the Yankee has no Moral Superiority over the South. Add to it the Race War with Native Americans and atrocities against the Chinese. Labor Wars with poor immigrants post CW.

The War wasn’t over Slavery. Causation of Slavery is a recent Myth. Sophomoric History. The North would of Never gone to War to protect the Negro. Only benefit given to the Negro by Whites were given to them because it benefit the Whites. North or South. Yankee wanted to take away the Confederacy’s manpower. Attacking Slavery did that. Republicans gave Black the Vote, it kept Republicans in Power longer. All benefits were for Northern Whites. What benefit Negroes got was by circumstance.
 

unionblue

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Member of the Year
Joined
Feb 20, 2005
Location
Ocala, FL (as of December, 2015).
What you Fail to realize is that the North fought to keep Blacks and or any other Colored Peoples out of the Western Territories or in the North. Your forefathers fought for White Supremacy. They fought to keep Blacks out of their 99%, close to perfect White Institutions. Limiting Slavery left Western Territories for White Families. Lincoln‘s Words.

Thomas’s goal was to keep Blacks out of the North and on the Plantations. He, Sherman and most other Union military thought Slavery was the Natural Position of the Negro. All of this Federal Government fighting for some Black Rights is a Yankee Myth. Northern Racial attitudes did not change during the War.

Lincoln took the Position that Blacks should have some basic rights had more to do with Forming a Political Party based on Limiting the Expansion of Slavery. Northern Racist were concerned about what Slavery did to Northern Whites and little about what it did to Negroes. Slavery gave the South Political Power and Slaves gave them the ability to Farm and Fight at the same time. This is the reason Lincoln finally agreed to issue the EP, to take manpower away from the South. Purely as a War Measure. Also let Negroes die in the place of Northern White Racist. A two fer. They also paid Negroes half wages and no Bounties until late in the War. So, they died cheaper than Whites. Mostly used them where they couldn’t get White soldiers to go. Many Negroes grew Yankee Cotton. Majority didn’t get paid and were treated as Slaves.

So, no the Yankee has no Moral Superiority over the South. Add to it the Race War with Native Americans and atrocities against the Chinese. Labor Wars with poor immigrants post CW.

The War wasn’t over Slavery. Causation of Slavery is a recent Myth. Sophomoric History. The North would of Never gone to War to protect the Negro. Only benefit given to the Negro by Whites were given to them because it benefit the Whites. North or South. Yankee wanted to take away the Confederacy’s manpower. Attacking Slavery did that. Republicans gave Black the Vote, it kept Republicans in Power longer. All benefits were for Northern Whites. What benefit Negroes got was by circumstance.
@uaskme ,

Paragraph 1: No, my realization has not failed and your words are no surprise here so why keep bringing it up? It is you who continually fails to realize the slaveholding states rebelled to defend and protect slavery. Why should I be surprised and "fail to realize" Northern whites wanted the territories free of black slaves?

Paragraph 2: Who ever said, me in particular, Thomas or Sherman or any other Union general was fighting for "Black Rights?" Using tactics to restrict or deny slaves as a Confederate military advantage, yes, social change, mostly no.

Paragraph 3: Wow. The idea that the South could use slaves as 3/5ths of a vote but not let those same slaves cast a vote themselves is OK with you, but the idea of free whites outnumbering that twisted power base in the North is cause for alarm. Just, wow. Yes, there were those cynics who touted a former slave in the Union army was cheaper than a white man and could take the bullet for them, but I guess then we have to cheapen their bravery by boiling down their sacrifice to such stark, unhappy excuses for chattel slavery. The EP WAS a war measure, but the 13th Amendment was what? A cherry on top of the racial "two fer?" And what about the 14th and 15th Amendments? You again try to freeze time and not look at all the historical fact.

Paragraph 4: You still try to lock history into stand-alone segments. After the Civil War, White Southerners, many former Confederates, stood right along with their fellow Yankee counterparts to deal out injustice to Native Americans, Chinese immigrants, labor strife and other acts of injustice in American history.

Paragraph 5: This segment was a complete turn-around from your previous post where you stated the South did secede over slavery with a slamming of the posted brakes. The war was indeed over Slavery and that is by no means a "myth." The slaveholding South, all on it's own, made the Civil War about slavery and there is your real problem, the historical record. They said it was the cause of the war, over and over again. The sad fact is the reason cannot be denied or excused or lessened by attacks on the racial attitudes of the time. No one has denied such attitudes or their effects. And Southern whites lost their political advantages in the political arena by putting slavery front and center as their main concern for rebellion. They lost power by their own arrogance in their hoped for ability of superiority not over just black slaves, but mudsills and greasy mechanics of the North.

They lost and this nation is the better for it.

Unionblue
 
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BuckeyeWarrior

Sergeant
Joined
Jan 1, 2020
Location
Ohio
I just have to point out that the "rebels" were Americans as well.
They were Americans that took up arms against their country and killed loyal Americans, and therefor traitors. That is why I don't count their deaths when talking about if the war was worth it. (i.e. was preserving the Union/ending slavery worth the loss of 300,000 Americans. and of course the answer is yes.)
 

Andersonh1

Brigadier General
Moderator
Joined
Jan 12, 2016
Location
South Carolina
They were Americans that took up arms against their country and killed loyal Americans, and therefor traitors. That is why I don't count their deaths when talking about if the war was worth it. (i.e. was preserving the Union/ending slavery worth the loss of 300,000 Americans. and of course the answer is yes.)

It's that type of divisive thinking, making the Confederates something "other" that I have a real problem with. They were loyal to their State and to those around them in their community, they followed the Constitution as they understood it. I'm not sitting in judgment on them. Who is to say that any of us would not have done the same thing in those circumstances?
 

unionblue

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Member of the Year
Joined
Feb 20, 2005
Location
Ocala, FL (as of December, 2015).
It's that type of divisive thinking, making the Confederates something "other" that I have a real problem with. They were loyal to their State and to those around them in their community, they followed the Constitution as they understood it. I'm not sitting in judgment on them. Who is to say that any of us would not have done the same thing in those circumstances?

When one shoots at another, it tends to change one's thinking to a divisive nature.

Loyal to a State and to your community does not always equate to being in the right, legally or constitutionally, especially when such loyalty is used as an excuse to violate Article II of the Constitution.

Why not sit in judgment of any past event in history? Are we not to learn from history? Are we to forego passing judgment so as to not endlessly repeat past mistakes?
 

Andersonh1

Brigadier General
Moderator
Joined
Jan 12, 2016
Location
South Carolina
When one shoots at another, it tends to change one's thinking to a divisive nature.

Loyal to a State and to your community does not always equate to being in the right, legally or constitutionally, especially when such loyalty is used as an excuse to violate Article II of the Constitution.

Easy to say from our perspective. They saw it differently. I have a lot of respect for the men on both sides for putting their money where their mouth was and going out into the field in support of their beliefs. I would never discount half of them as unworthy of being Americans because I disagree with what they did.

Why not sit in judgment of any past event in history? Are we not to learn from history? Are we to forego passing judgment so as to not endlessly repeat past mistakes?

Yeah, next time secession comes we'll handle it differently. :D
 
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