Dead Confederates, A Civil War Era Blog

Harriet Tubman, Confederate Scout

Posted in Memory by Andy Hall on July 26, 2015

Today’s history lesson comes via Kevin Jolley of Southern Heritage News & Views:

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Tubman

There was black regiments that fought in the Civil War for the south to. Don’t for get Harriet Tubman who scouted for the 2d South Carolina.

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The Second South Carolina Volunteer Infantry (African Descent) was one of the first African American units in the Union army, organized in early 1863, and composed of former slaves from the coasts of Georgia and South Carolina. The regiment was made somewhat infamous by its commanding officer, former Kansas Jayhawker James Montgomery. I’m pretty sure the folks in Darien, Georgia didn’t view that regiment as as fighting “for the south [sic.].”

On the positive side, though, I’m sure we can count on Mr. Jolley’s support for putting Tubman on the new $10 bill, right? Right?

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UPDATE, July 26: After being challenged about the Second South Carolina on Facebook, Mr. Jolley claims he never suggested they were a Confederate unit:

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Um, sure. OK.

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GeneralStarsGray

 

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  1. cptshandy said, on July 26, 2015 at 10:19 am

    Now that was very funny!

  2. Bill Underhill said, on July 26, 2015 at 10:24 am

    To chalk it up to poor research skills would too generous. To quote Brooks Simpson, “A gift that keeps on giving”.

    • Andy Hall said, on July 26, 2015 at 10:39 am

      As Mr. Jolley says, ” a lot of people need to get there [sic.] facts right.”

  3. Shane said, on July 26, 2015 at 11:12 am

    This is one reason why I sometimes think the civil war was a case of the North joining (reluctantly) in the preexisting war between slave owners and slaves. Further, I think it could be said that the war was not at all a war of northern aggression, but rather a war of the South with itself. The North joined as an ally of the slave.

    To expand the idea, the North joined the war of the South against itself when it elected as president the person who played the role of Lincoln in the Lincoln-Douglas debates and other policy speeches, a set of positions which would bring about the beginning of the end of slavery. The end of slavery was accelerated by different events that took place in after April 11, 1861. But the goal of the end of slavery preexisted this date and was the goal of most slaves – slaves who many times agitated for that goal with whatever means and with whatever organization they could muster. The 2nd SC colored infantry was an example of military organization of slaves and coordination with Northern forces of slaves with expertise and military supplies largely imported from the North (which did not allow for non-white officers as a condition of this alliance).

    In this sense, and many other senses, blacks very much fought for the South, but in this case very much not for the Confederacy.

    • Andy Hall said, on July 26, 2015 at 11:18 am

      “In this sense, and many other senses, blacks very much fought for the South, but in this case very much not for the Confederacy.”

      And that’s the fundamental disconnect that folks like Jolley sometimes exhibit, conflating the Confederacy with “the South,” and all southerners.

      “The end of slavery was accelerated by different events that took place in after April 11, 1861.”

      I’ve said before that the Lincoln administration was just about the last to recognize that the war was one of emancipation and the destruction of slavery. Most everyone in the South understood that from the beginning, black and white, although that obviously meant very different things to them.

      • David N. said, on July 28, 2015 at 4:26 pm

        While I don’t know the opinions of the secretaries who were in Lincoln’s cabinet, public speeches from Lincoln shows he was very much aware that slavery was the cause of the war.

        “One section of our country believes slavery is right and ought to be extended, while the other believes it is wrong and ought not to be extended. This is the only substantial dispute.” (First Inaugural Address, March 4 1861)

        “Without the institution of Slavery and the colored race as a basis, the war could not have an existence” (Address on Colonization to a Deputation of Negroes, August 14, 1862)

        So he was in a certain sense aware that a victory of the Union would bring about emancipation.

  4. Rob Baker said, on July 26, 2015 at 4:17 pm

    More funny is that he defense it afterwards.

  5. Matt McKeon said, on July 26, 2015 at 5:12 pm

    They don’t care if what they say is true or not.

  6. Leo said, on July 27, 2015 at 8:22 am

    I am simply amazed at the wild mental contortions these people will go through in an effort to create their own historical narrative.

    • Andy Hall said, on July 27, 2015 at 9:35 am

      Remember that the primary — *only*, really — purpose of groups like that one is to reassure its members that their cause is just and noble, and everyone else is out to get them. You don’t need to be accurate for that.

  7. H. E. Parmer said, on July 28, 2015 at 2:01 am

    If there were such a thing as a just universe, this numbnut would find himself visited nightly by the highly exasperated ghost of Ms. Tubman and given a good talking-to, and maybe a couple of sharp whacks upside the head with her ectoplasmic walking stick until the lesson sinks in.

    Although that might just be a waste of a good haunting. They say you can cure ignorance, but this sure looks like one terminal case of stupid to me. The guy knew who Harriet Tubman was — well, sort of, anyway — and must have seen “2nd South Carolina Volunteer” and assumed it was a Confederate regiment. Without bothering to question why, given that before the war she had dedicated herself to helping dozens of her people escape slavery, she’d now be scouting for the men who were fighting to keep them enslaved.

    These Heritage types never fail to amaze me — and not in a good way — with their ability to believe the most obviously nonsensical propositions. At least I can take some small comfort in the fact that the absurdity is in direct proportion to the desperation, now that they’re losing control of the narrative.

  8. Pat Young said, on July 30, 2015 at 12:14 pm

    You neglect Tubman’s many trips to the South before the war. She helped blacks escaping second-class citizenship in Canada travel to states in the Southeast where they could live happy and useful lives as slaves.

    • Andy Hall said, on July 30, 2015 at 12:23 pm

      Pat, I didn’t intend any slight of Tubman. But I also figured that readers of this blog would be generally familiar with her story.

      • Msb said, on July 30, 2015 at 4:28 pm

        I think you figured right.

  9. Leo said, on August 2, 2015 at 2:46 pm

    Speaking of confederate scouts, I was out on an errand and drove past the church where the funeral for Anthony Hervey is being held and saw HK Edgerton standing out front dressed as a southern planter. He was holding a battle flag in one hand and waving the other around as he talked to the media gathered there. I’m not sure why he wasn’t inside since the funeral was already in progress during that time.

    There didn’t appear to be as many cars there as I would have expected given all the social media hype. The main lot was a little over half full and the side lot was virtually empty. I did see lots of police there and one deputy. I don’t know if they were there to direct traffic or if they expected some kind of protest, but the area around the town square was as empty as ever on a Sunday.

    • Andy Hall said, on August 2, 2015 at 3:26 pm

      Thanks. I’d be curious to know how today’s events all fall out. I’m sure there will be lots about it from the heritage crowd, but locals in Oxford may have a different perspective.

    • Andy Hall said, on August 2, 2015 at 3:55 pm

      “I’m not sure why he wasn’t inside since the funeral was already in progress during that time.”

      Because given the choice of sitting quietly during a funeral service and putting on his one=man performance art show for media outside, he chose the latter.

    • Andy Hall said, on August 3, 2015 at 8:24 am

      “I’m not sure why he wasn’t inside since the funeral was already in progress during that time. ”

      WTVA:

      It came as a shock to Edgerton on Sunday, when he was asked to leave the church while proudly holding the Confederate flag.

      “If my flag can’t go, I can’t go,” Edgerton said.

      “It would have been a huge disappointment for Anthony, especially to ask me to leave with the flag. He would have wanted me standing next to his casket with this flag,” Edgerton added.

      Shorter: “They wouldn’t let me be the center of attention.”

  10. Leo said, on August 3, 2015 at 8:56 am

    Andy, it looks as though the majority of the people in town for the funeral actually did not attend the service but did join in the procession. The funeral was held at the First Baptist Church just southwest of the town square and the procession started at the Mid-Town shopping center about a mile north of the town square. I assume the vast majority of those in town simply gathered at the shopping center parking lot and waited there. Oddly enough, that parking lot is the same place the local Christmas parade starts and all indications are the funeral procession took on a parade like atmosphere according to some people. There was a giant confederate flag, motorcycles, people singing Dixie, reenactors, and a slew of people waving battle flags. Knowing Anthony the way I did, I am sure he would have approved.

    • Andy Hall said, on August 3, 2015 at 12:05 pm

      Give Edgerton this much — he dressed dressed for the occasion.

      I’m not sure the patrician, FFV bobby Lee would be thrilled about the face of the Confederate Heritage movement being increasingly biker-fied.

      • Leo said, on August 3, 2015 at 2:00 pm

        He could have gotten a nicer pole.

        • woodrowfan said, on August 4, 2015 at 9:09 am

          that would mean less money going into his pockets…

  11. Leo said, on August 4, 2015 at 8:56 am

    • Leo said, on August 4, 2015 at 9:04 am

      A comment to the provided Facebook post seems to leave no doubt the number of people attending the service was lower than expected. I am honestly surprised by the low turnout for the memorial service, especially given all the appeals on social media.


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