Sunday, May 29, 2011

150 Years Later

This year marks 150 years since the Civil War ( War Between the States or when we were living in South Carolina, The War of Northern Aggression was preferred in Charleston. )

This is the White House of the Confederacy in downtown  Richmond, Va.  This is the view of the back of the home.  Even it's days of being home for Jefferson Davis's wife Varina and their children, the front of the house sat on a busy, dirty street. Guests would walk into the home and out the back to the porch and the gardens. One of his sons, at age 5 fell off the porch, during the war, and died.  Very much like Lincoln losing a young son during the war as well.  ( I am struck by how much these 2 leaders of men look alike too.)

 Today is is virtually engulfed by "city".  I had visions of Mt. Vernon when we went in search of the house.  No.... that's not where it is.  There is a huge hospital to the right of it with the parking structure and the Museum of the Confederacy all connected.  To the left, either more tall buildings or still the hospital, I'm not sure.  I was disappointed it has been swallowed up by progress, but I am a history romantic at heart.  It only had an acre of land to begin with, which was owned by the city of Richmond, not the Davis family.  (He was mid fifties when their children were born  She was 18 years younger.)

(This is Google photo)  I couldn't take one myself, but if I could hop on a time machine, I may very well try it.
From the House and the Museum, we went to Hollywood Cemetery where the first soldier to die in the war is buried along with 3 presidents, Jefferson Davis, J.E.B. Stewart and Pickett.  This is the Gettysburg section. 

                   George Edward Pickett (January 16, 25, or 28,[1] 1825 – July 30, 1875)

I have an affinity for the women that stood with the men.  Look how long she lived and how much younger she was than him.  Jefferson Davis had been married to 21year old, Sarah,  daughter of Zachary Taylor, for only 3 months before she died of either malaria or yellow fever.  He had been in mourning for 10 years when he married Varina.

                            Jefferson Davis 1808 - 1889           Varina Davis 1826 -  1905 After his death to moved to New York City and supported herself as a writer.  Far to the right is a marble angel.
Angel guardian over Winnie Davisdaughter of Jefferson and Varina Davis.  To the left is the marble guardian over Margaret Davis Hayes and Joel Addison Hayes, daughter and son-in-law of the Davis's.)

Being an history fanatic, I am intrigued by the statues in cemeteries. In fact, ever since I saw that statue from the book " In The Garden of Good and Evil) I look for the stories.   2 of my 3 daughters appreciate the beauty in them as well.  I've had those girls walking cemeteries from Charleston to Deadwood.  You can learn the history of an area by reading the stones.    If you are a historian as well, here are a couple of the most beautiful, I think.

She is from the Memorial of Jefferson Davis.  To me she represents the sadness that was that war. But out of that sadness rose so much hope and promise. 
I have complained and bitched and whined about being so far away from my daughters and grandsons but if I hadn't had this experience, I wouldn't have had the chance to see and walk amongst the history I love.  This is my cup, half full.


Sweet Tea said...

It is so difficult for me to actually think of our historians as real people with real emotions and a real "life". Everyone wants to be remembered for "real". Beautiful post & photos.

(Florida) Girl said...

Wow. That last statue is stunning.

Intense Guy said...

I think I would enjoy a visit to Richmond and to the Hollywood Cemetery.

So no one knows when General George Pickett was born? is that why the three dates? Jefferson Davis was the only president of the Confederacy.

James Ewell Brown "Jeb" Stuart was a cavalryman and General. He died May 12, 1864. His wife, another of those "staunch women", Flora wore the black of mourning for the remainder of her life, and never remarried. She died after a fall where she hit her head on a city sidewalk in 1923.

Intense Guy said...

P.s., beautiful angels. You take nice photographs!

Kathy said...

Iggy - I think you would enjoy Richmond. Hollywood cemetary is the resting place of 3 presidents , comma, plus Jefferson Davis, etc. It's all very interesting and easy to spend a day there. (Richmond)

Far Side of Fifty said...

You are so close to all that history that I find so interesting! Thanks for the post, I really enjoyed it. Those Angels are would not see anything like that around here. In the museum we have a dagerreotype of Abraham Lincoln..and a photo of General Shermans wife and Mrs. Johnson the morning of Lincolns funeral..I will take a photo of it someday and write about really makes history come alive for me:)

Rob From Amersfoort said...

Very interesting! I wish I lived nearby so I could visit all those civil war, euh war of northern aggression, historic places.

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