The House of David

"dawnbreak in the west"

Saturday, July 02, 2011

General Gregory misses the point

General Gregory in November 1865, alongside Inspector-General Strong, went about the freedmen of Texas. Then he reported this to General OO Howard:

The freedmen are, as a general thing, strongly impressed with religious sentiments, and their morals are equal if not superior to those of a majority of the better informed and educated [that would be white people]. We find them not only willing but anxious to improve every opportunity offered for their moral and intellectual advancement.

Ramsdell records this in the footnote to page 73. He laughs - literally laughs - at it, introducing it as "highly diverting". Then he appends an "etc." to it, and calls it "pathetic ignorance". To rebut it he just cites "the light of over forty years of subsequent history". I have to say, I'm more laughing at Ramsdell than with him. Which is not to say that Ramsdell is wrong. One could easily come up with better footnotes.

Gregory reappears in June 1866 and p. 134, complaining about outrages against Union men and that the conservative civil authorities were letting the conservatives off. Ramsdell points out that the conservatives had not, in fact, taken charge at this time; at this time, the civil authorities were still Provisional and proUnion.

UPDATE 7/3/2011: improved focus. Cut out this post.

posted by Zimri on 15:42 | link | 0 comments

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