Why The Sentimentality Toward The South?

Will Carry

First Sergeant
Joined
Jun 1, 2015
Location
The Tar Heel State.
I have never seen all of the statues dedicated to the Confederate Dead, but I understand they all face north. There is one however that faces south. Does anyone know where the statue is or was I expect?
 

JKT

Private
Joined
Mar 31, 2017
Everybody in Baltimore calls everybody else "Hon". It's sort of a local tradition. Although it South of the Mason Dixon line I'm not sure how "southern" Baltimore really is. I have always taken it as a gesture of friendliness, myself.

John
Agreed; one of my colleagues here from Baltimore (aka “Balmer”) says the same. Those folks who are offended are over-thinking this and being a bit thin-skinned. It’s just an ingrained cordial greeting.
 

JKT

Private
Joined
Mar 31, 2017
I would think the better question would be why isn't there much sentimentality or romanticism towards the North?

I look at the US as 3 distinct regions, North, South, and West, I would say the Midwest is a fourth region but not as distinctly it's own, it's more a combination of the other three.

But would say it's never appeared to me the North is as high as the other two regions in sentimentality or romanticism of the either the old south or the old west.
Agreed. I’m originally from the South, but have lived several places (Ky, Ohio, Nevada) and have been in California for 20 years. Interestingly it seems a lot of non-southerners when asked “..so where are you from?”, will answer with the last place they lived or where they grew up. Not to generalize, but southerners seem to always answer the place where they were “born”.
 

JKT

Private
Joined
Mar 31, 2017
Well that ain't the case where I live. I see single digits every winter, & get snow every year. Not to the degree folks up there do but still.

Besides, plenty of the Yankees moving to my area ain't retired. Most of the ones I've personally met, are my age, or younger. I could name at least 1/2 a dozen off the top of my head, who've moved to my area in the last 2-3 years. Keep in mind, I live in a county of less than 25,000.

Most of the folks I've talked to said, they had to get away from the craziness. I usually respond with, "Don't bring it here. Remember why you wanted to leave there...."
That’s right. When I lived in NC (the Triangle) years ago. I was lounging in a motel pool and mentioned to this fellow from Asheville about all the northerners around. He said yeah we got a lot of “halfbacks” out our way too. Halfbacks? He said..”you know these folks that go down to Florida, get half way back to New Jersey..and stop here!”
 

Fairfield

Sergeant Major
Joined
Dec 5, 2019
I would think the better question would be why isn't there much sentimentality or romanticism towards the North?

I look at the US as 3 distinct regions, North, South, and West, I would say the Midwest is a fourth region but not as distinctly it's own, it's more a combination of the other three.

But would say it's never appeared to me the North is as high as the other two regions in sentimentality or romanticism of the either the old south or the old west.
Perhaps it depends where in the north. Certainly people from Maine can be very partial. Those born in Maine but living out of state often are termed "MIE"--which means "Mainer in Exile". I chose to live in Maine but I come originally from Georgia; I don't consider myself a southerner but a New Englander. Only two things get a real rise out of me: one is a misrepresentation of Maine--its history and its people. Having lived in both areas, I'd say the pull of Maine on its natives is as strong as I've seen anywhere (with the possible exception of Scotland).
 

JKT

Private
Joined
Mar 31, 2017
Come on man....! Y'all don't have a Waffle House, or a Cracker Barrel, in Wisconsin...! That alone makes the South better, & more sentimental :laugh:
Funny. Living here in Sacramento (but originally from Alabama), I remember talking to this fellow who told me he was from the the “Southland”; then proceeds to describe some part of LA. I said: hold it, we’ve got an “LA” where I’m from too. It’s between Pensacola & Panama City, Florida and it’s know as LA/ Lower Alabama (or the Redneck Riviera) and you’re not from there unless you can throw a rock and hit a Waffle House!
 

JKT

Private
Joined
Mar 31, 2017
Same here..! I went to the dentist today. When the 26yr old assistant asked me to follow her back, I responded, "Yes Ma'am." She smiled, & was very friendly. That's normal etiquette, & manners, where I live. Especially if I don't know you personally, it's definitely "sir" or "ma'am". A far cry from the greetings used in NYC.... :laugh:

I'm on the same page as you & Rebforever about our affection for "The South". I imagine a good chunk of it is simply because it's home. Maybe it's genetic, maybe it's environmental, I don't know. I just know, I've been through 42 of the 50 states, lived in 4, & have traveled all over North America, & the Caribbean. No place feels like home more than Virginia. I've just always felt like I was a part of VA. It's hard to explain to folks that don't feel a connection to a place, or have a defined regional identity.

That's not to say I haven't enjoyed lots of other places. I have. I could live in rural Texas, & perhaps a few other places but, none would ever feel like home.

Worth mentioning, of all the places I've traveled, & as proud a Virginian as I am, I don't think there's a people in America more proud of their regional identity than Native Texans. I doubt you could find a state, that has more state flags flying than Texas. While many Texans will welcome you into their state, they'll never consider you an equal if you aren't a Native Texan :cool: I would also bet, you'll find more folks who reside in Texas, that consider themselves Texans first, Americans second, than you will find in other states.... just sayin.
I’ve noted that also. And boy, are they hard on Okies (something about football and being north of the Red River).
 

Cycom

Sergeant
Joined
Feb 19, 2021
Location
Los Angeles, California
Funny. Living here in Sacramento (but originally from Alabama), I remember talking to this fellow who told me he was from the the “Southland”; then proceeds to describe some part of LA. I said: hold it, we’ve got an “LA” where I’m from too. It’s between Pensacola & Panama City, Florida and it’s know as LA/ Lower Alabama (or the Redneck Riviera) and you’re not from there unless you can throw a rock and hit a Waffle House!
If it means anything, we Angelenos aren’t a bright bunch 😉
 

JKT

Private
Joined
Mar 31, 2017
I love the South and I am proud to be a Southerner. My family was run out of Ireland in 1754 and came to Virginia, then North Carolina and on to Alabama. Scotts Irish they called us. The best thing about the South is the cooking! Fried Chicken and vegetables fresh out of the garden. Fried catfish and hush puppies and my favorite slow cooked pork on a wood fired oven. I like the Down East North Carolina pulled pork but I'm not a snob. I'll even eat that stuff they serve in Alabama that they call barbecue.
I hear ya. Lived in Chapel Hill a few years but couldn’t get used to the “pig picking” kind of Q. Some guy told me that east of Greensboro it was like that. If you went in. Harris Teeter, 2 big sections: western Carolina with tomatoe based sauce vs eastern Carolina (vinegar based). Guess they figure tomatoes are a contaminant!
 

Will Carry

First Sergeant
Joined
Jun 1, 2015
Location
The Tar Heel State.
I am a Duke fan and the University of North Carolina is our nemesis. Often called the greatest rivalry is sports. UNC had a statue in their quad called "Silent Sam". It commemorated the 143 students that died in the war (I think that's right but I could be wrong.) Silent Sam was brought down recently by a small group of students (It's their school). Over at Trinity College (Duke) they have this fabulous chapel. Around the outside they have statues of famous people built into the chapel. One was Robert E Lee. He and Silent Sam are no longer. If you are ever in Chapel Hill or Durham go to Duke Homestead. Pappy Duke was a tobacco farmer. He grew that wonderful Bright-leaf Tobacco. The Union soldiers would often come by and buy or steal Mr. Duke's tobacco. Pappy Duke didn't care. He new when they ran out they would want more. I digress. Check out Duke Chapel and Duke Homestead, then go by Tommy Bullock's barbecue. Lord have mercy!
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2011
Location
mo
Perhaps it depends where in the north. Certainly people from Maine can be very partial. Those born in Maine but living out of state often are termed "MIE"--which means "Mainer in Exile". I chose to live in Maine but I come originally from Georgia; I don't consider myself a southerner but a New Englander. Only two things get a real rise out of me: one is a misrepresentation of Maine--its history and its people. Having lived in both areas, I'd say the pull of Maine on its natives is as strong as I've seen anywhere (with the possible exception of Scotland).
I assume we are talking nationally, and sentiments the rest of the nation has for certain regions. The west and south always has had large appeal outside the regions themselves. The south and west always has had modern and historic appeal

Certainly think every region has some pride or sentiment in itself.
 

Yankee Brooke

First Sergeant
Forum Host
Joined
Jun 8, 2018
Location
PA
Us Pennsylvanians seem to have a lot of pride in our home state. I understand the sentimentality from those who live, lived, or grew up in the South. What I don't quite understand is why I have a certain level of that as well, having never really even been further than Virginia...it has a real pull I suppose.
 

CyleKostello

Private
Joined
Jan 27, 2021
Location
Boston Mass/ Seattle Wa
Really interesting discussion here. Lovely part of the country and for the most part famously welcoming folks. However, I never really understood sentimentality for the old south. My family is intimately familiar with the darker underbelly of the old south and that precludes any sentimentality.

We have some stories about our ancestor's experience as slaves that have been verbally passed down from generation to generation. Combine those often harrowing stories with my grandparents experience under Jim Crow and we haven't got much cause to feel sentimental.
 

Cycom

Sergeant
Joined
Feb 19, 2021
Location
Los Angeles, California
Us Pennsylvanians seem to have a lot of pride in our home state. I understand the sentimentality from those who live, lived, or grew up in the South. What I don't quite understand is why I have a certain level of that as well, having never really even been further than Virginia...it has a real pull I suppose.
Yep, that’s what makes the South so interesting to me. There’s -something- there that’s hard to pinpoint but it’s obvious the South and Old West have big appeal worldwide.

That said, I appreciate all regional pride. For being such a young country we own an immense treasure of culture and traditions. You New Englanders have HP Lovecraft, for example, and that makes you guys alright.
 

A. Roy

Sergeant Major
Forum Host
Joined
Sep 2, 2019
Location
Raleigh, North Carolina
We have some stories about our ancestor's experience as slaves that have been verbally passed down from generation to generation. Combine those often harrowing stories with my grandparents experience under Jim Crow and we haven't got much cause to feel sentimental.

Thank you for bringing that up. My emotional connection with the South has to do with my experiences growing up here. (Even those feelings are ambivalent, because I had bad things happen to me here as well as good.) I don't particularly feel nostalgia for the antebellum years, but I am interested in knowing what life was like then. I realize that might not be the same for everyone.

I personally think the family stories you mentioned can be valuable, as they help us nowadays to understand the past. But do you find that people in your family would just rather not talk about the slavery and Jim Crow years?

Roy B.
 

CyleKostello

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Joined
Jan 27, 2021
Location
Boston Mass/ Seattle Wa
I personally think the family stories you mentioned can be valuable, as they help us nowadays to understand the past. But do you find that people in your family would just rather not talk about the slavery and Jim Crow years?

Almost the direct opposite to be honest. Even the members of my family who aren't interested in history are familiar with our stories about slavery. It's an arguably one of the defining features of our heritage. However my grandparents are at times reluctant to delve too deeply into their own experiences with Jim Crow, I suppose that trauma still has yet to heal all the way.

Just to clarify, I've got no ill will for the south today. The food, history, and people make it my second favorite part of the country (after the Pacific Northwest, but I'm a bit biased)
 
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JKT

Private
Joined
Mar 31, 2017
Here ya go! Now he’s a memory..torn down by our “history revisionists” *edited*. I paraphrase.. those who never learned...are bound to repeat!

BE9C5C29-DF71-4657-87C6-7DFC9017A931.jpeg
 
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Joined
Sep 17, 2011
Location
mo
The land grant I recently found reminded me of this thread, and what affects my view personally of it.

When I talk of my CW ancestors over 10 Confederate and one Union they are all on my mom's side. In the 1830's several groups relocated here from KY, most were slave owning, so I would say probably middle class, having slaves allowed them to grow and prosper up to the ACW. So my mom's southern family tree is a rather full tree, everyone married families in the area, who were doing well and remained in the area almost 200 years now.

My dad's side was northern, they were dirt farmers/sharecroppers/hired hands, rather constantly bouncing around from place to place with no roots to an area untill coming here in 1930's. So it's a rather sparse tree trunk with few known branch's. I know 10 family stories handed done from mom's side to every one of dad's, and virtually none of dad's side before finally settling here.

So the southern heritage represents to me family, tradition, roots, and prosperity.
 
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SeaSoldier

Private
Joined
Sep 17, 2018
Location
Texas
But folks tend to forget we had the majority of experienced officer corps. They think Confederates as a bunch of ragged redneck yahoos when in reality in its time it was probably one of the best trained and disciplined armies in the Western Hemisphere and easily rivaled or was superior to other armies throughout the world, even some European ones, (excepting the great armies of say Britain, and Prussia). The CS Army and navy impressed many a European officer, some from Britain to Austria joining, and they wouldn't have if the "Lost Cause" legends were true. Those guys were hard to impress...

That and the fact it wasn't as ragged as is commonly believed is conveniently forgotten in the Legends of the CSA. Along with how though still a part of the US, the South won the really war of Reconstruction, morphing into the "Solid South" and had all the State's Rights it could ask for for 90 years.

I'm firmly in the Southern/Confederate camp when it comes to the war, but I've no use for the legends and myths about it or anything else when the truth is good enough. Legends and so on ain't nothing but a lie by another name. If the South was truly conquered we wouldn't have so many memorials and monuments to CSA.
British Col Freemantle made exactly that observation: Southerners, man to man were were about three times their number. He observed both North and South and made his comments in his diary which is still available. Lee had been offered command of the Union Army - Grant was still out working in a store. USMC lost just short of 50% of their officers to the South. One CSA Maryland Regiment was made up of college students! The list goes on.
 
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