THE OLD WAR HORSE
THE VOICE OF GENERAL JAMES LONGSTREET CAMP #1247, SONS OF CONFEDERATE VETERANS
VOLUME 8, ISSUE 10, OCTOBER, 2006
When looking out into Monroe Park from the steps of the historic Cathedral of the Sacred Heart, one of the many interesting sights you will see is a bronze statue of a man looking right back at you. This gentleman in bronze is a soldier who stands on a tall base of granite. Upon further inspection one sees that he is not just a soldier but a Confederate General complete with three stars on his collar and a Virginia waist belt plate. Who was this man that is described on the granite base as "Soldier, Statesman, Patriot, Friend?" His name was William Carter Wickham and besides being an important Confederate General he later became President of the Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad. Wickham was born on September 21, 1820 in Richmond and had the good fortune to possess the blood of some of the most prominent families in Virginia. His mother was Anne Butler Carter who was R. E. Lee's first cousin. His great-grandfather, Gen. Thomas Nelson, Jr. was a signer of the Declaration of Independence. Much of Wickham's youth was spent north of Richmond at his father's plantation "Hickory Hill." He went on to graduate from the University of Virginia and afterwards began to practice law, having been admitted to the bar in 1842. He would later become a justice. By 1849 Wickham, a Whig, was married, had several children and was a member of the Virginia House of Delegates. Before the war Wickham was against secession. In 1861 he was elected by Henrico County to represent it in the state convention as a Unionist. He voted against secession but when the majority of the convention voted to secede, he followed the will of his state. He went on to command the Hanover Dragoons and led them through the battle of 1st Manassas. In September, Governor Letcher promoted him to Lt. Colonel of the 4th Virginia Cavalry. He saw a lot of action during his service in the Confederate army. During a cavalry charge at Williamsburg he received a severe sabre wound and was captured by the enemy. After being paroled shortly thereafter, he returned home and was promoted to full Colonel in the 4th Cavalry. He served in Sharpsburg where he was again wounded, this time by a shell fragment to the neck. It seems as if Col. Wickham had a lot of fight still left in him because, after a short recovery, he went on to fight at Chancellorsville and Gettysburg. In May, Richmond elected him to the Confederate House of Representatives. Despite attacks by the Richmond Examiner to label him a Unionist (due to his opposition to secession in 1861) his actions on the battlefield won the respect and confidence of the capital city. On October 5, 1864, he resigned his commission to take his seat in the House of Representatives. By that time he had been commissioned as a Brigadier General and had taken part in the battle of Yellow Tavern. Stuart's last command at Yellow Tavern was "Order Wickham to dismount his brigade and attack." He also saw action at Fisher's Hill, Milford and Waynesboro. Before the end of the war in February, 1865 ,Wickham saw the writing on the wall and took part in the Hampton Roads Conference which tried to bring an early end to the war with a result more favorable to Virginia and the south. After the war he became a Republican and, as a member of the Electoral College, voted for Grant for President in 1872. He became president of the Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad and oversaw the construction of rails linking the coal fields of West Virginia to Richmond. On July 23, 1888, at the age of 67, he died at his office in Richmond. A funeral procession of many mourners, led by numerous military companies, escorted his body to his final resting place at Hickory Hill, his family estate in Hanover County. The statue at Monroe Park, commissioned by his Confederate comrades and the employees of the Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad, was sculpted by none other than Edward Valentine. It was unveiled in 1891 by W. C. Wickham Renshaw, Wickham's grandson, at a grand ceremony, during which both General Fitzhugh Lee and Governor McKinney gave orations. This noble character looking out from Monroe Park was indeed a soldier, statesman, patriot and friend. There is no doubt that he felt pressures by his constituents when considering secession, on the battlefield, in the Confederate House of Delegates and during his tenure as President of the C&O Railroad. Despite these pressures he remained true to himself and his beliefs. The welfare of his home state, country, friends and family was always his highest priority. In today's wacky world of politics, where true statesmen are few and far between, it is refreshing to learn about a man who did what he thought was right for his constituency no matter what the issues were at the time. Deo Vindice, Taylor
The long awaited day has arrived! The membership certificate of young Austin Waters Wingfield Thomas has arrived from SCV General Headquarters. We plan to induct Austin at a future meeting. His ancestor is Thomas Wills of Company B, 11th Virginia Infantry. Another new member of our camp is Thomas N. C. Spivey, whose transfer from another local camp has been processed at GHQ. We extend a hearty Longstreet welcome to these two new members and to John C. Thompson, Jr. who was inducted at our September meeting. John C. Thompson, Sr. has moved back to Florida, but says he will attend meetings if his visits to Richmond coincide with our meeting nights. Our associate member (and Virginia Division Inspector) Joe Wright participated in a ceremony in Nelson County honoring the four Kidd Brothers, Nathan, Preston, Robert and William, who fought for the Confederacy. Three of the brothers died in the Battle of Sharpsburg and the fourth, William, lost his left foot in battle and lived until 1921. The ceremony was covered by the Fredericksburg Free- Lance Star and may be seen on their web site, Fredericksburg.com/news/fls/092006/09302006/222222/index_html Our 2nd Lt. Commander, Michael L. Kidd, was also present at the ceremony. I have finished reading Stonewall Jackson: The Black Man's Friend and have no hesitancy in recommending it to anyone. Bud Robertson's Jackson biography was entitled Stonewall Jackson: The Man, The Soldier, The Legend to let the world know that Jackson's service in The War Between The States covered only 5% of his life. Jackson's faithfulness to God was the core of his life. In no way could he be called a fanatic. I thank all those who have paid renewal dues. Membership cards will be distributed at the October 17 meeting to those who have paid and who have not already received cards. If you haven't paid, please bring your $45.00 renewal dues to that meeting or mail them to me no later than Saturday October 28 in order to avoid a $5.00 reinstatement fee. Walter
ROMA'S RESTAURANT 8330 STAPLES MILL RD. LOCATED IN "THE SHOPS AT STAPLES MILL" TURN LEFT AT FIRST STOPLIGHT NORTH OF THE WISTAR SHOPPING CENTER DINNER - SOCIAL 6:00 PM MEETING STARTS AT 7:00 PM
THE CHRISTMAS BANQUET WILL BE AT THE WESTWOOD RACQUET CLUB DECEMBER 12TH, 2006 AT 6:00 P. M. BE SURE TO SET ASIDE THIS DATE!! MORE INFORMATION WILL FOLLOW IN NOVEMBER.
Our speaker for October will be Lt. Colonel Hyman Schwartzberg, Assistant Chief of Staff, G-1, Virginia Defense Force, Department of Military Affairs, Commonwealth of Virginia, who is based here in Richmond. Colonel Schwartzberg's subject, "Early Air Warfare During the Civil War," should prove to be rather interesting, to say the least!
Dana Jackson, a 27-year Navy veteran, opened his talk by telling us that he had the good fortune to be in school during the Civil War Centennial, which stimulated his interest in that period of American history. This led him to researching what happened to survivors of the War who served later in the United States Army. For some the experience started before the War ended. With the U. S. Army occupied in the East, the Sioux rose up in Minnesota and killed 1,000 people. General Henry Halleck suggested to President Abraham Lincoln the recruiting of Confederate prisoners. After being promised that they would not fight against Confederates, they took the oath of allegiance and became American soldiers. Many were sent to Fort Riley and Fort Leavenworth. Six volunteer regiments were raised to guard railroads, escort wagon trains, and replace telegraph wires. Although there was a bad desertion rate initially, General Alfred Sully, a noted Indian fighter, was pleased with the performance of those who remained. He asked for more "Galvanized Yankees" and personally went to Camp Douglas on a recruiting mission. When he returned west, General Grenville Dodge appropriated some of the soldiers for his units. None of the ex-Confederates were commissioned officers. General John Pope made sergeants of many former officers. The soldiers were discharged in 1866. Many did not return to the South because taking the oath was odious. Most stayed in the west in the Army and engaged in small unit actions against the Indians. These exploits are described in Dee Brown's 1963 book Galvanized Yankees. When the Spanish-American War broke out, President William McKinley needed capable generals. He also wanted to bring Southerners into the government. "Fighting Joe" Wheeler was interviewed by General Nelson A. Miles, the general who had put him in leg irons in the Civil War. Wheeler got the job of commanding all cavalry in Cuba. Logistics were a nightmare. The Army also invaded Cuba in the height of the yellow fever season. In one battle, the official chronicler quoted Wheeler as saying, "We've got those Yankees on the run now." Wheeler had sons and a daughter serving in this war. He was the senior American officer at the surrender of the Spanish army at Santiago. Wheeler retired from the regular U. S. Army in 1900. The GAR escorted his body to the train station. It lay in state in Trinity Church in the nation's capital. He is buried in Arlington National cemetery. Other former Confederates who served in the Army during the Spanish-American War were Fitzhugh Lee, Matthew Cailbraith Butler, William Oates, and Thomas Lafayette Rosser. It was interesting to hear of the significant role played by former Confederates in the winning of the west and in the war which marked the emergence of the United States as a world power. Walter
2005-2007 CAMP OFFICERS LONGSTREET CAMP #1247Commander: Taylor Cowardin 356-9625 1st. Lt. Cmdr.: William F. Shumadine, III 285-4044 2nd Lt. Cmdr.: Michael Kidd 270-9651 Adjutant/Treasurer: Walter Tucker 360-7247 Judge Advocate: Richard B. Campbell 278-6488 Quartermaster: R. Preston Nuttall 276-8977 Chaplain: Henry V. Langford 474-1978
PUBLICATIONSWebmaster: Gary F. Cowardin 262-0534 Website: longstreetscv.org War Horse: David P. George 353-8392
The following is a cumulative listing of contributors to the upkeep of “The Old War Horse” for the period September, 2006 through the current month. As you know, our cumulative listing starts in July of each year. Ben Baird Lloyd Brooks Clint Cowardin* Raymond Crews* Jerold Evans Richard Faglie John Kane Roger Kirby Mike Miller Joe Moschetti Preston Nuttall Waite Rawls Rufus Sarvay John Shumadine Will Schumadine Harrison Taylor Walter Tucker Will Wallace Hugh Williams Joe Wright In Memory of Chuck Walton-Ben Baird In Memory of Bill Jones-Anonymous Legend: * - Multiple contributions § - Visitor Donation + - in memory of Past Cmdr. Tom Lauterbach
THROUGH NOVEMBER 30 "Art of the Confederacy" at the Museum of the Confederacy, Richmond. Wonderful wartime and postwar sketches, paintings, water colors, photos and p.o.w. art. $7 adults, $6 seniors, $3 students over age 6. for info: 649-1861, www.moc.org THROUGH 2006 Confederate navy exhibit. various types of ships, commanders, naval technology, paintings, artifacts at the Museum of the Confederacy, Richmond. for info: 649-1861, www.moc.org OCTOBER 21-22 11TH Annual "Civil War in the Borderlands" symposium at Pamplin Historical Park, Petersburg. Reservations and fee required. For info: 804-861-2408 NOVEMBER 3-5 "Thunder in the Valley," 17th annual Guyandotte Civil War Days to mark the 145th anniversary of the raid on Guyandotte, VA. Street battle. By invitation. For info: Tedra Cremeans 304-654-2205 or firstname.lastname@example.org NOVEMBER 4 Two hour Brandy Station Battlefield Tour of Buford Knoll and Yew Ridge from Graffiti House, Brandy Station, 10:00 a.m. Fighting that took place on June 9, 1863 between General John Buford and "Rooney" Lee's brigade. No advance reservations required. $5 over age 12. Sponsored by Brandy Station Foundation. For info: 540-547-4106, email@example.com, www.brandystationfoundation.com NOVEMBER 4-5 Battle of Bethesda Church reenactment at Locust Grove Plantation, Walkertown. 10:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m. For info: 804-769-8201, 804-777-6224, http://peninsulaartillery.bizland.com NOVEMBER 18-19 26th Annual Capital of the Confederacy Civil War Show, Richmond Raceway Complex. Saturday 9-5, Sunday 9-3. Displays by collectors, The Museum of the Confederacy & Richmond National Battlefield Park. Over age 12-$6. Sponsored by Central Virginia Civil War Collectors Association & The Museum of the Confederacy. For info: 804-737-5827 or 803-928-1006.
John B. Thompson, Jr., the 4th member of the Thompson family to join Longstreet, is shown above being sworn in by 1st Lt. Commander Will Schumadine while Commander Taylor Cowardin looks on. If you did not get an opportunity to introduce yourself and welcome him to Longstreet on the 17th, be sure to do so at the November meeting. John, we are delighted to have you as a member and we know that you will not be able to find a finer group of Compatriots anywhere.
"After exchanging the ordinary salutations General Lee directed me to go back to his headquarters and wait for him. I did so, but he did not make his appearance until about 1 o'clock, when he came riding alone, at a slow walk, and evidently wrapped in profound thought. When he arrived, there was not even a sentinel on duty at his tent, and no one of his staff was awake. The moon was high in the clear sky and the silent scene was unusually vivid. As he approached and saw us lying on the grass under a tree, he spoke, reined in his horse, and essayed to dismount. The effort to do so betrayed so much physical exhaustion that I hurriedly rose and stepped forward to assist him but before I reached his side he had succeeded in alighting, and threw his arm across his saddle to rest, and fixing his eyes upon the ground leaned in silence and almost motionless upon his equally weary horse,-the two forming a striking and never-to-be-forgotten group. The moon shone full on his massive features and revealed an expression of sadness that I had never before seen upon his face. Awed by his appearance I waited for him to speak until the silence became embarrassing, when, to break it and change the current of his thoughts, I ventured to remark, in a sympathetic tone, and in allusion to his great fatigue: "General, this has been a hard day on you." He looked up and replied mournfully: " Yes, it has been a sad, sad day to us:" and immediately relapsed into his thoughtful mood and attitude. Being unwilling again to intrude upon his reflections, I said no more. After perhaps a minute or two, he suddenly straightened up to his full height, and turning to me with more animation that I had ever seen in him before, for he was a man of wonderful equanimity, he said in a voice tremulous with emotion: " I never saw troops behave more magnificently than Pickett's division of Virginians did to-day in that grand charge upon the enemy. And if they had been supported as they were to have been,-but, for some reason not yet fully explained to me, were not,- we would have held the position and the day would have been ours." After a moment's pause, he added in a loud voice, in a tone almost of agony, "Too bad! Too bad! Oh! TOO BAD!" I shall never forget his language, his manner, and his appearance of mental suffering. In a few moments all emotion was suppressed, and he spoke feelingly of several of his fallen and trusted officers, among others of Brigadier Generals Armistead, Garnett and Kemper of Pickett's division." -IMBODEN, " The Confederate Retreat From Gettysburg"
Duct tape never sticks where or when you want it. Duct tape only sticks to itself. The number of people watching you is directly proportional to the stupidity of your action. At whatever stage you apologize to your spouse, the reply is constant- "It's too late now." Technology is dominated by two types of people: those who understand what they do not manage, and those who manage what they do not understand. In any organization, there are only two people to contact if you want results-the person at the very top and the person at the very bottom.