Quote of the Day May 22, 2012

Fox Gap in the distance from Frosttown Gap

“The crackling rattle of musketry grows nearer and nearer, the bellowing guns are louder and just over their heads is heard the swift-sailing song of the Minie, with its devilish diminuendo…Here and there a man drops his rifle, clasps a hand to his leg, arm, or side and falls to the rear or sinks to the ground.” Edward Lord of the 9th New Hampshire recalls the Battle of Fox Gap on September 14, 1862. From The Battle of South Mountain by John David Hoptak.  Charleston:  The History Press, 2011 page 77. Originally from History of the Ninth Regiment, New Hampshire Volunteers in the War of the Rebellion by Edward O. Lord. Concord, NH: Republican Press Association, 1895 page 72.



Quote of the Day May 12, 2012

Edwin V. Sumner

“much safer and more efficient commander.” Winfield Scott explaining his selection of Edwin Sumner over William S. Harney to command his regular cavalry in the Mexico City campaign.  From Unfurl Those Colors! McClellan, Sumner, & The Second Army Corps in the Antietam Campaign by Marion Armstrong. Tuscaloosa: University of Alabama Press, 2008 page 57.  Originally from House, Correspondence the Secretary of War and Generals Scott and Taylor, and between General Scott and Mr. Trist, 30th Cong., 1st sess., 1848, Executive Document No. 56, Serial No. 518,44,56.

Quote of the Day May 11, 2011

Lee fought with his back to the Potomac (shown here near Shepherdstown)

“in referring to criticisms that had been made on the great risks he had taken…that such criticisms were obvious but that the disparity of forces between the contending armies rendered the risks unavoidable.”  William Allan.  Lee discussing with William Allen the need for taking risks.  He was an ordnance officer in the ANV during the war and a faculty member at Washington College afterward and knew Lee there.  From Taken at the Flood Robert E. Lee & Confederate Strategy in the Maryland Campaign of 1862 by Joseph L. Harsh.  Kent:  The Kent State University Press, 1999 page 50.  Allan William.  The Army of Northern Virginia in 1862 by William Allan  (Dayton, Ohio:  Morningside House, 1984) page 200.

Quote of the Day May 10, 2012

The Wood Road near Fox Gap

“fled like deer”  Alfred Iverson describing the retreat of his regiment after its rout at Fox Gap. From The Battle of South Mountain by John David Hoptak.  Charleston:  The History Press, 2011 page 58. Originally from Iverson letter to D.H. Hill, Aug 23, 1885, DH Hill Papers

Quote of the Day May 9, 2012

Eliakim Scammon

“Old Granny”  Derisive nickname for Eliakim Scammon. From The Battle of South Mountain by John David Hoptak.  Charleston:  The History Press, 2011 page 51.

Quote of the Day May 8 2012

The West Woods from Hauser’s Ridge

“It was so dark & dismal in that fearful woods which I was rapidly traveling with messages from Jackson that at times I could not tell thunder from artillery & was semi-bewildered as to the locality of our cannon; an experience I have never forgotten.” Henry Kyd Douglas describing the night before the battle as he carried messages and helped place artillery.  Marginal annotation made in Henderson, 2:228, Douglas Library. From Stonewall Jackson The Man, The Soldier, The Legend by James I. Robertson.  New York:  Macmillan Publishing Co, 1997 page 611.

Quote of the Day May 7 2012

Lt Custer with Lt Washington a Confederate Prisoner Fair Oaks VA May 31 1862

“My career as a cadet had but little to recommend it to study of those who come after me, unless as an example to be carefully avoided.” George Armstrong Custer comments on his “achievements” at West Point. From The Perfect Lion The Life and Death of Confederate Artillerist John Pelham by Jerry Maxwell. Tuscaloosa: The University of Alabama Press, 2011 page 22. Originally from Crazy Horse and Custer: The Parallel Lives of Two American Warriors by Stephen E. Ambrose. Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1975 page 99.