The Confederate Cavalry Leader Most Feared by Union Generals

Part 2 of a Series on Confederate Cavalry

Nathan Bedford Forrest, Statue in Memphis park 2010, Removed by PC politicians 2017.
Nathan Bedford Forrest, Statue in Memphis park 2010, Removed by PC politicians 2017.

I’ll be damned if I’ll surrender.”

The battles of Fort Henry and Fort Donelson in February 1862 were the first two significant victories for the Union. They also demonstrated an important Union strategy that many believe was the ultimate key to Union defeat of Confederate resistance. They set out to dominate the water transportation lifelines critical to the Southern economy and military defense. They were eventually able to dominate these critical arteries with a “Brown Water Navy” of gunboats. The South had few such resources to oppose them.  Fort Henry was on the Tennessee River in west-middle Tennessee near the Kentucky border. Fort Donelson was about 12 miles to the east on the Cumberland River. The commander of Fort Henry was West Point graduate and engineering inspector Brigadier General Lloyd Tilghman, from Paducah, Kentucky. Tilghman had realized that both forts Henry and Donelson were defective defensive positions but put up a valiant battle before surrendering to a Union siege on February 6, 1862. Meanwhile he had secretly moved most of his of his troops to Fort Donelson.

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As a Christian, I realize that Planet Earth will never experience true “freedom” until our Lord and Savior, Jesus the Messiah, returns to set up His Kingdom.  That goes for our troubled country, also.  But until that blessed day we as imperfect human beings must live with an imperfect, or incomplete,  concept of freedom—of the political and social kind—in terms that our finite minds can grasp.  If you’ve read my columns in the past, you know that I discuss the concepts of freedom, liberty, and responsibility quite often.  So please indulge me as once again I plunge into the “nostalgia” of the past—a time when these concepts were better understood, more highly treasured, fiercely defended, and discussed with peers who believed in those same values.  Perhaps some of you, like me, are still around to pass some of these valuable concepts to younger generations, who are learning, or soon will be, the life lesson that FREEDOM IS NOT FREE, NOR WILL IT EVER BE SO!

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America will make a decision this November (2020) whether or not she wishes to remain the “home of the brave and the land of the free.”

I’m sure the Democrats say they will insure this home of the brave and the free if you elect them. I’m just as sure that if you do elect them you will never see another free election in this nation. For many years we have watched as both political parties worked to grant more and more power to the federal government, and as silently and unobtrusively as possible removed from we-the-people one freedom after another; passing laws they said were for our benefit. And if they couldn’t get a law passed they would introduce some new regulations to accomplish their goal.

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While Horse and Hero Fell­­--They That Fought so Well - Part 1 of a Series

Author Mike Scruggs with British Enfield .58 caliber rifle used by Morgan’s 2nd Kentucky Cavalry, CSA.
Author Mike Scruggs with British Enfield .58 caliber rifle used by Morgan’s 2nd Kentucky Cavalry, CSA.

“Every morning brought a noble chance, and every chance brought out a noble knight.”—Alfred, Lord Tennyson in Morte d’Arthur, 1842, quoted by Winston Churchill in his June 4, 1940, “Finest Hour” speech.    

There lingers to this day a romantic vision of Confederate cavalry that brings forth the images of Sir Walter Scott’s gallant knights of old. Many Southern cavalrymen, and to a certain extent the whole Confederate Army, were strongly influenced by the romantic novels of Scott, which were very popular reading in the South. They were also undoubtedly influenced by the nobility and military gallantry of many of the English poet Alfred, Lord Tennyson’s poems, such as Morte d’Arthur (1842) and Charge of the Light Brigade (1854).

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Author Arthur Thompson

“A conspiracy is nothing but a secret agreement of a number of men for the pursuance of policies which they dare not admit in public.” - Mark Twain

“But ‘tis strange, and often times, to win us our harm, the instruments of darkness tell us truths, win us with honest trifles, to betray us in deepest consequence.”

William Shakespeare, “Macbeth”, Act 1, Scene 3 (First performed in 1606).

(Or, in modern English, the agents of evil often tell us part of the truth in order to lead us to our destruction.  They earn our trust by telling us the truth about “little” things, but then they betray us when it will damage us the most.)

This is a long review, but it’s a long book!  Stay with me.

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Because of my love for this country and what it has meant to me I desperately desire to see it preserved for those who will come after me.  Because of this, these columns often deal with events and trends I see that are moving to destroy the America that I have known and replace it with an America that is subservient to some global authority with a philosophy of government that is 180 degrees from that of our Founding Fathers.  In so doing I sometimes lose sight of the title under which these articles are presented: From a Christian Perspective.

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H. K. Edgerton, Southern Patriot from Asheville, NC.
H. K. Edgerton, Southern Patriot from Asheville, NC.

The Battle against Politically Correct Chains - Part 2 of 2 of a Series

As I wrote last week in part 1 of this series, perhaps the best estimate of the number of both free and bonded blacks serving in the Confederate Army during the Civil War is about 65,000.  This estimate came from Scott K. Williams’ comprehensive article, Black Confederates Heritage, written in 1998 and still available on the internet. Of an estimated 1.0 million men that served in the Confederate Army and Navy, this is about 6.5 percent. However, Williams’ estimate may not have sufficiently accounted for the large number of black teamsters vitally important to supporting Confederate supply lines.

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Mike Scruggs