“FRAMINGHAM, Mass. — The gravesite of a Union Army major general sits largely forgotten in a small cemetery along the Massachusetts Turnpike.
A piece of the coat worn by President Abraham Lincoln when he was assassinated rests quietly in a library attic in a Boston suburb. It’s shown upon request, a rare occurrence.
A monument honoring one of the first official Civil War black units stands in a busy intersection in front of the Massachusetts Statehouse, barely gaining notice from the hustle of tourists and workers who pass by each day.
As the nation marks the 150th anniversary of the Civil War, states in the old South — the side that lost — are hosting elaborate re-enactments, intricate memorials, even formal galas highlighting the war’s persistent legacy in the region. But for many states in the North — the side that won — only scant, smaller events are planned in an area of the nation that helped sparked the conflict but now, historians say, struggles to acknowledge it.
“It’s almost like it never happened,” said Annie Murphy, executive director of the Framingham History Center in Framingham, Mass. “But all you have to do is look around and see evidence that it did. It’s just that people aren’t looking here”
There are many interesting observations in this article. While the South is ridiculed as a whole with such stereo-types as being, poor, backward, stupid, etc. The North is portrayed as being progressive, morally superior and intelligent.
The South is not “stupid” or “backward” but it has something the federal government could never take away during its invasion, occupation and reconstruction of the Southern states and that is its fondness for tradition, heritage and culture. As the article states there are many reasons for the North’s complacency in regards to its heritage:
To be sure, some Northern states have Civil War events planned and have formed commemoration commissions. Connecticut’s 150th Civil War Commemoration was set up in 2008 and has scheduled a number of events and exhibits until 2015. Vermont, the first state to outlaw slavery, started a similar commission last year to coordinate activities statewide and in towns.
And some Massachusetts small not-for-profit and historic groups are trying to spark interest through research, planned tours and town events.
But observers say those events pale in comparison to those in the South.
That difference highlights Northern states’ long struggle with how to remember a war that was largely fought on Southern soil, said Steven Mintz, a Columbia University history professor and author of “Moralists and Modernizers: America’s Pre-Civil War Reformers.” For Northern states like Massachusetts, Mintz said revisiting the Civil War also means revisiting their own unsolved, uncomfortable issues like racial inequality after slavery. ”
To acknowledge the North’s issues with “racial inequality” before, during and after the Civil War, would be to knock down the pillars of the facade that the North went to war for racial equality. Acknowledgement of the North’s issues with “racial inequality” would lead to the acknowledgement that the Federal Government invaded the South to protect its flow of tax revenue from the South via import tariffs.
Most wars are fought for money, political power , protectionism and control of natural resources, this war was no different-webmaster
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Tomorrow is Thanksgiving, it is a time for reflecting on what we are thankful for. For me it is special because after having the worst year of my life, I have survived against all odds. I am thankful for my family and my friends and my “Southern Family” within the ranks of the SCV who checked in on me from time to time and offered hope and words of encouragement. I am also thankful that I can still honor my Confederate ancestors and thankful that I live in a country where I am free to do so. America ain’t what she used to be, but she’s still the best place to be.
Unfortunately, this Thanksgiving, is a reminder of what we face in the coming year. 2011 is going to be the kick off of the Civil War Sesquicentennial. There have been many state commissions and organizations created to honor this historic event. Unfortunately they have been stacked with men like Kevin Levin, who has taken many an opportunity to discredit, insult, mock and insult the Sons of Confederate Veterans, and the cause for which our ancestors fought.
A friend recently informed me that Levin : “this man has influence on the VA Civil War Sesquicentennial, The Virginia Historical Society, and receives grant money to educate our teachers on how to teach about the Civil War ( and that’s just naming a few of his influences). If we don’t get the word out, how will we be able to stop him?
I would like to see his face the next time we show up at a roundtable (like the Old Brunswick SCV did recently) if these types of posts are brought up. I also want to encourage our members (especially those in VA) to write all of these groups and let them know how we feel about a man who holds this much animosity towards the SCV having so much sway…”
Levin is also the author of the Civil War Memory Blog and his latest efforts were dedicated to mocking the SCV for educating the public on the true history of Thanksgiving as well as insulting the SCV for donating $35,000 for medical research. Normally I don’t link to men like Levin, but in this case maybe you should see his hatred and animosity for yourselves by clicking on the following links:
I also wonder why Mr. Levin, who is unquestionably biased toward preserving and promoting agenda of Abraham Lincoln, as well as the myth which surrounds this U.S. president, why is HE qualified to advise teachers on Civil War heritage, but texbooks that used Sons of Confederate Veterans research about black Confederate Veterans censored?
Maybe the answer lies in the fact that in order to “preserve” Lincoln’s “legacy” men like Levin and Virginia Governor McConnell resort to racism to preserve the memory of “the great emancipator”?