Framing the Dialogue

Posts Tagged ‘gettysburg’

Land of Lincoln

“No matter what your hobby is, Lincoln will likely pop up sooner or later.  If you’re interested in politics, war, civil rights, literature, economics, the law, religion, romance, human psychology, celebrity, or the infinite application of the graphic arts, then your interest will likely bring you into contact with Lincoln the politician, the commander in chief, the emancipator, the writer, the rhetorician, the free marketer, the lawyer, the martyr, the husband of Mary, the manic depressive, and the most celebrated and most graphically depicted man in American history.”

Stats Rhats

Many years ago I was fortunate to be invited on a school trip to Gettysburg National Military Park.  That trip sparked a love affair with the city and the Civil War.  If you are from below the Mason-Dixon line you would call it the War Between the States.  A favorite book about that era is The Killer Angels which was the basis of a favorite movie, Gettysburg.

One of ending scenes of the movie was an encounter between some captured Confederate soldiers and Union soldiers after the epic Picket/Pettigrew charge.  The southerners were resting on some fencing when one of the Union officers asked the prisoners why they were fighting this war.  One of the Confederates answered that they were fighting for “Stats Rhats.’ 

I Plead The Tenth

The Tenth Amendment to the United States Constitution states:

“The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”

These 28 words say so much, but are regarded so little these days.  When you look back to what our fledgling country encountered as a colony of England you should be able to understand their trepidation towards the creation of a powerful United States (Federal) government. 

Battle Cry of Freedom

I am a bit of a Civil War buff.  It started with a trip to Gettysburg National Military Park in Pennsylvania.  The Civil War and Gettysburg are two of the most written about subjects in American writing.  I have read numerous books on the glorious battles and the heroic efforts of the combatants.  Their personal stories inspire and make you cry at the same time. 

James M. McPherson is one of the premier writers about that period and as a Pulitzer Prize winner you would expect his work to be first-rate.  I found Battle Cry of Freedom different than other books about that era.  McPherson’s chronology of the period includes a great deal of  “behind the scenes” information about the conflict; the politics, the media, the politicians.

Civil War Trilogy

I really didn’t have much interest in history until I had the opportunity to chaperone my son’s fifth grade field trip in 2000.  This was their big field trip to the Gettysburg National Military Park.  The kids (and parents) fund-raised all year for the trip in April. 

We arrived at the park after a four-hour drive and it was basically fields with lots of monuments.  A lot of monuments!  We had a great time and learned a great deal that day.  So what does this have to do with a book review?