“Maritime archaeologists and researchers in North Carolina recently discovered one of the most significant shipwrecks found off the East Coast in recent years. During a routine sonar assessment of known wrecks off the seaside town of Oak Island in North Carolina on Feb. 27, researchers and archaeologists stumbled upon the well-preserved wreckage of a blockade runner steamer from the Civil War, according to Billy Ray Morris, North Carolina’s deputy state archaeologist-underwater and director of the North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources’ Underwater Archaeology branch. “This finding is incredibly exciting because it’s so intact,” Morris told ABC News.”
Source: ‘Rare’ Civil War Shipwreck Discovered Off North Carolina Coast – Yahoo
In The Atlantic Allen Guelzo argues that “the Civil War made it impossible for religious absolutism to address problems in American life—especially economic and racial ones—where religious absolutism would in fact have done a very large measure of good.” This is an intriguing but deeply flawed argument. Leaving aside the dubious assumption that moral absolutes are good, I want to challenge only one aspect of his argument: his claim that
“From the Civil War onward, American Protestantism would be locked deeper and deeper into a state of cultural imprisonment, and in many cases, retreating to a world of private experience in which Christianity remained of little more significance to public life than stamp-collecting or bridge parties. Appeals to divine authority at the beginning of the Civil War fragmented in deadlock and contradiction, and ever since then, it has been difficult for deeply rooted religious conviction to assert a genuinely shaping influence over American public life.”
Guelzo provides very little evidence for this claim, as well as failing to connect the moral angst created by the Civil War to the retreat of religion in public life.
In the wake of the fight over the Confederate flag and the new that Texas school children will not learn that the Civil War was fought over slavery
, two articles this week at the History News Network present us with more evidence that the South did not fight for states’ rights. Roy Finkenbine
invokes “the little-known U.S. Supreme Court case of Ableman
to argue that “[o]nly in the wake of Appomattox did former Confederates assert that the conflict had been waged over constitutional principles.”And Stephen R. Leccese
argues that “[t]he states’ rights argument falls apart when one has an understanding of antebellum Southern history. Before the Civil War, the South was in no way a bastion of states’ rights.”
I agree with Leccese that “[t]his country’s educational system must do better and present an accurate view of history. When that happens, we can have a public that acts with an informed mind on issues of national (and international, as the world views race relations in this country very poorly) importance.”
“The Supreme Court Case that Proves that the Antebellum South Wasn’t Really Concerned with States Rights.” | HNN
“Slaves Waiting for Sale: Richmond, Virginia – Wikipedia”
“Five million public school students in Texas will begin using new social studies textbooks this fall based on state academic standards that barely address racial segregation. The state’s guidelines for teaching American history also do not mention the Ku Klux Klan or Jim Crow laws. And when it comes to the Civil War, children are supposed to learn that the conflict was caused by ‘sectionalism, states’ rights and slavery’ — written deliberately in that order to telegraph slavery’s secondary role in driving the conflict, according to some members of the state board of education.” This is what happens when politically motivated Schools Boards determine what children will learn. You may recall the kerfuffle over the Texas state curriculum standards in 2010 and the textbooks in 2014 that led to this version of the Civil War appearing in Texas social studies textbooks. (see previous posts on this subject here and here)
The belief that the Civil War was about states’ rights not slavery might be comforting to some, but that feeling comes at the cost of truth, justice, progress, and everything we hold dear as a nation. How can students understand the present if they have been mislead about the past?
Texas officials: Schools should teach that slavery was ‘side issue’ to Civil War – The Washington Post.
Those who played music during the war. Timothy Walch entreats us to remember them. See his argument at:
History News Network | There Is One More Thing We Need to Remember About the Civil War.
Band of the 10th Veteran Reserve Corps. Washington, D.C. April, 1865 — Wikipedia