Once again, it is an honor for me to serve as your Camp Commander for the next year. I trust that we, as a camp, will have a productive and interesting year. The first topic which I planned to address, both here and at the camp meeting, is recruiting. However, Charles Oliver, our designated recruiter, will be absent from the next meeting so we will postpone that discussion until March. For now I would like to focus on the idea that we have absolutely nothing to be ashamed of as descendants of Confederate Soldiers, and as Southerners in general. Soon after I moved to Waco in about 1994 I read a letter to the editor in the Waco Trib. I do not remember the subject of the letter but the writer ended his letter by saying that the "South" is the "least American" part of the United States. How absurd! I would boldly contend that the South is the most representative of true American values--closely followed by the people of parts of the West. Southerners serve their country in the military in disproportionate numbers. This has even been a recruiting issue in the U.S. Army because some people contend that the Army lacks "legitimacy" if every geographical/ethnic/whatever group...fill in the blank... is not represented. Southerners are proud of their military heritage, just like as Texans we are proud of what our kin did to free ourselves from an incompetent government in Mexico. The military in the South is considered to be an honorable calling. Southerners revere the U.S. Constitution, in my opinion, because we recognize that it is based upon Natural Law where our RIGHTS come from God not from a benevolent (ho ho) government, or at the whim of a judicial court, or even because of the "will of the people". I think that alot of the current attacks upon the South and our Confederate heritage are politically motivated because certain snotty elites look down their noses at our values. In short, we as Southerners exemplify what it means to be an American. If our ancestors from 150, 200 years ago could miraculously return I have no doubt that they would feel most at home here, with us. Our Confederate ancestors are part of that historical continuity. They looked up to their forefathers who fought the British and Mexicans as heroes, and honored their memory. We can do no less. See you next Tuesday at Poppa Rollos!
Lieutenant Commander Comments
The February meeting for the BG Felix Robertson Camp # 129 Sons of Confederate Veterans will be on the 9th of February at 7 PM at Poppa Rollos Pizza at 703 North Valley Mills Drive in Waco. Dinner and time to socialize will be at 6 PM. The speaker for this month's meeting will be Ann Westbrook, whose talk is entitled "They Turned in Their Dresses: Southern Women Spies". Guests, especially including those of the fairer sex, are welcomed and encouraged.
Fellow Compatriots: The deadline for the Chaplain Comments has come upon me and caught me unprepared. As most of you know, I have been cursed with atrial fibrillation for the past several weeks and the cardiovert (shock) they did was unsuccessful. Needless to say, I have been more concerned with my health and the realization of my mortality than 'comments'. Therefore, I am borrowing a piece written four years ago by our brother, Len Patterson, Chaplain of the Army of the Trans-Mississippi, which is even more poignant today. Thank You.
Deo Vindice, Hayden H. Moody, Chaplain
A Lost Cause?
We've all heard about the Confederate States of America and all it stood for and fought for referred to as a "lost cause". Of course, we lost the War for Southern Independence, and as a result we lost our country. We also lost the opportunity to publicly denounce the likes of Lincoln, Sherman, and Butler for the war criminals they were. We lost the right to fully enjoy our proud Southern heritage, and show proper respect for honorable men like Lee, Jackson, and Forrest. Many would even deny us the right to honor our brave and noble Confederate forefathers. Yes, alot was lost at Appomattox Court House on April 9th, 1865......but not the Cause!
In fact, the Confederate Cause is alive and well, and getting stronger every day. Throughout this country, people are getting tired of big government. They're getting tired of Democrats. They are getting tired of Republicans. They're getting tired of Washington bureaucracy. They see hundreds of billions of their hard-earned tax dollars being used, abused, misused, and squandered, while tax paying citizens are fighting to keep their homes and jobs. And they"re getting tired of it! The result is, more and more people are beginning to embrace the Confederate Cause. They just don't know it.
Jesus said in John 8:32, "And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free". Today, people everywhere are becoming more and more aware of the truth. And the truth is, "Big Brother" is getting bigger and more demanding and intrusive, while the concept of "We the People", upon which this country was founded, is being brushed aside. If one person or a small group of people, complain about a manger scene in front of a courthouse, or the Ten Commandments in a public building, or a monument honoring our brave Confederate soldiers in a town square, or a Confederate Battle Flag in the upper corner of a state flag, then they are removed, and "We the People" are not consulted. People in this country are beginning to grow weary of truth and freedom being replaced by political correctness and personal agendas. They're beginning to see that the South was right, and still is. They just don't know it.
As the Sons of Confederate Veterans, we are charged with the "vindication of the Cause for which (our Confederate forefathers) fought". Now it seems that the Cause is not only on the road to vindication, but acceptance by the vast majority of the country. The desire to restore the United States and the Constitution envisioned, and fought for, by our Founding Fathers, is truly a just and worthy cause. It was the Cause of the Confederacy. And, it is rapidly becoming the Cause of the people of the United States. Maybe they don't know it...but we do!
My prayer today is that God will bless the Sons of Confederate Veterans and our just and most worthy Cause.
Bro. Len Patterson, Th.D
Chaplain, Army of Trans-Mississippi
Sons of Confederate Veterans
Confederate Book Reviews
The Final Battles of the Petersburg Campaign: Breaking the Backbone of the Rebellion, by A. Wilson Greene. This book is a very detailed look at the final battles of the Petersburg Campaign written by a former NPS Ranger and current president of the excellent Pamplin Historical Park & The National Museum of the Civil War Soldier. It begins with an overview of conditions on the Petersburg front during the winter of 1864-1865. It moves on to the fighting around Five Forks which begins the final phase of combat around Petersburg and concludes with the withdrawal of the Army of Northern Virginia from the Petersburg area as it moves to the west, ultimately to Appomattox. As befitting the authorship of a veteran of the NPS the writing is detailed and well supported with excellent maps. I visited a good bit of this area in the summer of 2014 so I was already familiar with the geography. The writing was concise, and easy to understand, especially when it came down to the particulars of who was dominating "No Man's Land" between the opposing lines. The desperate Southern defense against the overwhelming numbers of Yankee attackers is particularly sad to relate. Despite the reelection of Lincoln, which indicated that the North was prepared to wage war to the end, Southern morale to a large degree remained high. Southern soldiers still had faith in the leadership ability of Robert E. Lee. The final collapse is thus rendered even more sad. This book is highly recommended for military readers and lovers of good narrative history.
Fight Like the Devil: The First Day at Gettysburg July 1, 1863, by Chris Mackowski, Kristopher D. white, and Daniel T. Davis. This is a volume in the "Emerging Civil War Series" published by Savas Beatie. The series combines fine battle narratives with a travel guide format. The series is ideal for visiting military sites as a beginner or as a more experienced historian. This book begins with the armies moving toward Gettysburg and concludes with the broken Federal forces reorganizing on Cemetery Hill. This book is recommended.
American Carnage: Wounded Knee, 1890, by Jerome A. Greene. This book is a very detailed and well researched history of the Wounded Knee Massacre in 1890. Wounded came about as a result of the U.S. Government's effects to deal with what it thought to potentially dangerous unrest on the Lakota Sioux Pine Ridge Reservation. In fact, a religious revival of sorts was occurring throughout the West among Indians on reservations. Basically, the revival was nonviolent; but at Pine Ridge it took upon some aspects that government personnel considered threatening. The 7th Cavalry was attempting in a clumsy fashion to disarm one band of Lakota; An accidental firearm discharge led to a brief fight which quickly escalated into a massacre as the mostly unarmed Indians--including women and children were cut down. This book is an outstanding attempt to examine the events and determine actually what happened.
02/09/16 Camp meeting at Poppa Rollo's. 6:00pm optional meal-7:00 pm Speaker
02/11/16 Brazos Rose Chapter meeting at West Waco Library @ 6:00pm
03/02/16 Texas Independence Day (1836) Fly your Texas and Rebel flags!