Friday, July 30, 2010

Northeast Brigade Workshop


     The Northeast Brigade will hold a workshop on August 14th at the Boaz public library. The meeting will begin with registration at 8:30 am and will officially begin at 8:45 with opening remarks. The workshop is open to all members of the SCV. Our topics are varied and will last approximately 30 minutes for each plus some time for questions. Our goal is to be finished by 1 pm. For those that want to eat lunch afterwards, we have a room at Ryans a few blocks from the library.

     Please encourage your members to come, especially your camp officers. We hope to provide some useful information to help grow your camp.

     The agenda is attached. The library is located at 404 Thomas Avenue in Boaz. Use this link to get a map.

If you would like a copy of the agenda please email Jimmy Hill at

Jimmy Hill
NE Brigade

Thursday, February 18, 2010

CSS Hunley, celebrating the submariner legacy

©The Dolphin

By: MC1(AW) Peter D. Blair

GROTON, Conn. - In American history and in the submarine community, the date February 17, 1864, marks a tremendous milestone.

On that day, 146 years ago, the CSS Hunley sank the USS Housatonic and became the first submarine to sink an enemy ship. After sinking the sloop-of-war the crew signaled the Confederate forces ashore and then disappeared into the Atlantic Ocean, creating a mystery that would last for more than a century.

As the Civil War raged on and Union vessels tightened the blockades of the confederate ports, ways to break through and deliver much needed supplies were being devised.

Horace Hunley, a planter, lawyer and inventor conceived, designed and built a vessel for that very purpose.

Built from a cylindrical boiler with iron straps and rivets, the Hunley was revolutionary. The crew could submerge or raise the vessel simply by opening ballast tanks located on either end of the sub. The spar torpedo on the front of the sub was designed to punch through the hull of an enemy vessel, planting the explosive charge and then allowing the sub to back away and detonate the charge from a safe distance.

As the crew of the Hunley approached the Housatonic, Union forces fired upon the sub with small arms fire, but the crew successfully planted their torpedo and destroyed the vessel. The Housatonic burned for three minutes before sinking into Charleston Harbor. The Hunley crew was never heard from again. Rewards were offered to anyone who could find the sub, and even P.T. Barnum offered 100,000 dollars to whoever found it.

In 1995, author and adventurer Clive Cussler found the Hunley resting on the floor of the Atlantic Ocean. Intact and remarkably well preserved, the Hunley was found buried deep within the sand and silt just outside of Charleston Harbor.

On August 8, 2000, Hunley breached the surface of the Atlantic Ocean for the first time in over 100 years as a crane lifted the legendary sub from the ocean floor.

On April 17, 2004, the remains of the crew of H. L. Hunley were interred in Charleston's Magnolia Cemetery with full military honors. A crowd estimated at between 35,000 and 50,000, including 10,000 period military and civilian reenactors, were present for what some called the "Last Confederate Funeral."

Today conservation continues on the Hunley, as researchers hope to one day put the sub on display.

For more information about the Hunley, visit

©The Dolphin 2010

Thursday, February 11, 2010

CSS Alabama cannon makes Mobile its home

Author: Fox 10 Television, Mobile, Alabama

One of the guns of the confederate raider, CSS Alabama has returned to the home of its captain, Admiral Raphael Semmes. The CSS Alabama sank in about 200 feet of water off Cherbourg, France, after an engagement with the Union's USS Kearsage on June 11, 1864. The recovered artifacts, many of them already on display at The Museum of Mobile, provide information about the CSS Alabama’s construction, her technologies, armaments and the lives of those who served on her. Through archaeological projects such as the CSS Alabama excavation we share the story of our past.

“The City of Mobile carpenters are constructing a cannon carriage for its eventual display in the Museum of Mobile. The exhibit will open once the gallery renovation is complete. Summer is the projected opening date,” said Jacob Laurence, curator of exhibits. “You never know what may happen with a gun that size if you are not careful and plan accordingly.”

The cannon will be a welcome addition to those items the Museum of Mobile already has on loan from the US Navy. It will become the centerpiece in the 700 square foot exhibit funded by the Mobile Museum Board. The gun is one of eight guns that were originally on the deck of the CSS Alabama. Six were 32-pounder cannon, which means they shot a 32-pound round cannon ball and were stationed at the edges of the deck facing starboard or port. The other two were larger pivot guns that were located in the middle of the deck and fired conical shot by contrast to the gun the Museum will display. The gun is black in color, approximately 10 feet long, and weighs 5000 pounds (2 1/2 tons). The cannon is one of only three recovered of the original six of that size. One is at the Navy Yard in Washington, the other in Charleston, SC. This cannon will be on a long-term loan from the US Navy Naval History and Heritage Command in Washington D.C.

“The Museum of Mobile is very pleased that one of the deck guns raised from the CSS Alabama has arrived in our city and will be included in our permanent exhibits gallery,” stated David Alsobrook, director. “Since Admiral Raphael Semmes’s postwar residence and his gravesite are in Mobile, I think our Museum is a logical home for this artifact. Many people have helped bring this project to fruition. I want to thank attorney Robert Edington for his extraordinary efforts in leading this acquisition project from the very beginning to its final stages. I think it’s safe to say that the Museum of Mobile wouldn’t have obtained this artifact without the gifted leadership of Mr. Edington. We also deeply appreciate the technical expertise of Dr. Paul Mardikian and the Hunley conservators in Charleston, SC, and the collegial assistance of Dr. Robert Neyland of the US Navy’s Naval History and Heritage Command in Washington, DC. I also wish to point out that the Museum of Mobile’s Board, under the leadership of our chair, Tony Kendall, underwrote the cost for the renovation of our new exhibits gallery which will include the gun and for other expenses associated with the shipment of the gun, along with strong support from the Friends of the Museum of Mobile and the CSS Alabama Association. We are all looking forward to the movement of the gun into the Museum of Mobile and the fabrication of this new exhibits gallery, which will occur in the coming months. We have not established a date for the opening of the new exhibits gallery, and that announcement will be forthcoming.”

Tony Kendall, chairman, Museum Board said, "We at the Museum of Mobile are pleased that months of diligent efforts have brought a cannon from the CSS Alabama to Mobile, the city Admiral Semmes called home. This along with the ship's bell, already on display, is yet another reason to visit the city's museum of history downtown."

The Museum of Mobile is located at 111 South Royal Street. For more information on the CSS Alabama cannon or other exhibits, please call 208-7569.


Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Confederate Flag and St. Andrew's Cross

Click on this link to see full article with pictures:

Autor: David Dieteman
Publikováno: 30.11.2009
Rubrika: English

Joseph Stromberg rightly points out that the media prefers to refer to the St. Andrew's Cross on the Confederate battle flag as a letter X.

Of course, it is not a letter X. It is a cross – in particular, the St. Andrew's Cross. In vexillology (the study of flags), the technical term for such a cross is a saltire.

Webster's Third New International Dictionary (I don't have the OED on hand; sorry) defines a saltire as: noun, singular:

1.heraldry: an ordinary consisting of a cross formed by a bend dexter and a bend sinister crossing in the center of the field. X-shaped cross: esp. Saint Andrew's Cross.

The term derives from the Middle English and Middle French words for an X-shaped animal barricade that people could jump over. Presumably, the animals could jump over the middle of the X as well, but it never occurred to them to do so.

Webster's, by the way, provides an additional definition of a saltire: adj.: shaped like an X.

So perhaps there is nothing sinister going on in the mantra that the Confederate flag is an "X," but given that the mere reference to "an X" is an incomplete history of flags featuring the St. Andrew's Cross, and given the larger cultural climate of hatred of all things Christian, I smell a rat.

This is of particular concern to me, as I am a Roman Catholic and a parishioner at, well, wouldn't you know it – St. Andrew's.

In the church, there is a statue of St. Andrew himself, holding a big X in his hands. Why? He lived far too long ago to have been a Spike Lee fan or a follower of Malcolm X.

The reason he is holding the X is that it is not an X – it is a cross. Saint Andrew, you see, was crucified on an X-shaped cross.

The St. Andrew's Cross is not unique to the Confederate battle flag. The reason that the CSA put the St. Andrew's Cross on its flag is the Scottish heritage of the South.

The Scottish national flag, you see, is the St. Andrew's Cross in white on a field of blue.

(This is to be distinguished from the Scottish government flag, the flag of the Scottish monarchy, which features a red lion on a field of yellow.)

A similar situation to the Scottish situation is found in many nations, such as Germany, whose government flag has an eagle in the center of the red, black and gold banner, as does Austria (similar eagle issues).

Joseph Stromberg has brought to my attention the fact that, where the St. Andrew's Cross is concerned, in South Africa, the Transvaal (South African Republic, or ZAR) flag from 1874-75, known as the Burger flag, descended from the Voortrekker flag of 1836-40.

For those who do not read Afrikaans, Stromberg has provided a translation: "This [Burger flag] is a revised form of the Voortrekker flag. T. F. Burgers, as President of the South African Republic, tried to replace the Transvaal Vierkleur with this flag. From 1875, however, the Vierkleur was the official flag of the ZAR. The Burger flag was however sometimes hoisted next to the Vierkleur in Burgers's time, and was usually known as the President's flag."

(Much like those pesky Mississippians, the South Africans did not want a replacement flag.)

But back to St. Andrew and his cross.

Saint Andrew is also the patron saint of Russia. Unsurprisingly, then, the ensign of the Russian Imperial Navy which flew during the reign of the Czars, as well as the Russian Imperial Navy Jack both feature the St. Andrew's Cross.

And let's not forget the flags of Alabama and Florida.

A variant also appears on the Spanish Cross (the Cross of Burgundy, flown from 1516 to 1556 by Charles I of Spain), although I am not sure of any connection. However, since this flag was flown by Cortez in his conquest of Mexico, it is perhaps on the endangered banners list as well.

Given the recent media hysteria over Johnny Hart's "B.C." cartoon, and the general media ridicule of all things Christian, is it any wonder that the Confederate battle flag is hated?

The Confederate battle flag, by the way, is square.

The navy jack (or ensign, which was carried by some ground troups, as noted by (right) is a rectangle.

The Left certainly hates the Confederate flag because it is "the flag of a stateless nation" that, despite its military surrender, has never surrendered its spirit.

Perhaps the Left also despises the St. Andrew's Cross because of Andrew's very name – it means "manly" in Greek. Post-modern, relativist western civilization simply cannot abide the concept of manliness.

April 21, 2001

Mr. Dieteman is an attorney in Erie, Pennsylvania, and a PhD candidate in philosophy at The Catholic University of America.

© 2001 David Dieteman

David Dieteman Archives

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

County prepares to move Confederate monument

Marion County Florida administrator to create list of possible sites for statue.

By Bill Thompson
Staff writer -
Published: Wednesday, November 18, 2009 at 6:30 a.m.

The Confederate monument that stood guard in front of the Marion County Courthouse for nearly a century, only to be stuck in a corner two years ago as the facility was expanded, is likely moving.

The question remains: Where?

On Tuesday, the County Commission appeared to reach a consensus to relocate the statue of the Confederate infantryman, known commonly as "Johnny Reb."

That came after Ocala lawyer Lanny Curry proposed a public-private partnership to relocate the 101-year-old monument and volunteered to help raise the estimated $25,000 needed to move it from its present location, a nook on the building's south side fronting Northwest First Street.

To further the project, commissioners agreed to set up an account with the court clerk's office to accept tax-exempt donations and accepted Commissioner Charlie Stone's offer to serve as a liaison to work with Curry and other parties interested in finding Johnny Reb a new home.

County Administrator Lee Niblock said he would prepare at least three new locations for the board to consider at its next meeting, scheduled for Dec. 1.

Niblock indicated that the Ocala-Marion County Veterans Memorial Park, a site favored by many, is one option. Leaving the monument where it is will be offered as another, he added. As for where else it might go, Niblock was mum, only saying the spot would reflect the statue's "historical significance."

Johnny Reb was removed in 2007 from the front of the courthouse in downtown Ocala in preparation for a $41-million expansion.

Other than spending a four-year stint in storage in the late 1980s when the courthouse was last renovated, the two-story-tall, 15-ton statue has been a fixture at the facility's entrance since being dedicated in April 1908.

The current courthouse project is expected to be completed in January.

Former county administrator Pat Howard had designated Johnny Reb's current location as permanent and Niblock was inclined to concur unless the County Commission directed otherwise. Curry, a U.S. Navy veteran and member of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, appealed to the board to find a "suitable location" for the monument.

Relating that his great-grandfather, Lawton Curry, was a Confederate soldier in the Florida cavalry who had been wounded in battle, Curry said it was not "in a place of honor and not in a proper location."

His preference is the veterans' park, at Fort King Street and Southeast 25th Avenue, about two miles from where Johnny Reb is now situated.

Curry also said he was trying to fulfill a commitment to the late Tommy Needham, a former county commissioner and impetus for the park.

"I promised him that I would not let the issue go away," Curry told the commission.

Curry said he felt strongly about the need to sustain the memory of the efforts of those who fought in the Civil War.

While the monument has periodically ignited controversy as civil rights groups complained it is an affront to blacks, the commission's reluctance to overrule Howard's decision was primarily rooted in the cost of moving it.

Relocating the statue requires a specialized moving company that can dismantle its three fitted parts and reassemble it.

Stone suggested the board could perhaps convince some company to offer in-kind services to move it.

Once the cost issue is resolved, the monument should be placed in a more prominent position, Stone offered.

"It's just not in a location where people can see it on an ongoing basis," he said.

In other action, the board learned that Marion County had received almost $2.5 million in federal stimulus funding to make the courthouse and some county offices more energy efficient.

Roughly $727,000 of that amount will be used to install new cooling units to replace the 50-year-old units at the courthouse's heating and air conditioning system. An additional $303,000 will be spent to replace the facility's windows and lighting. Another $450,000 will go for installing solar heating panels at the Marion County Jail.

Other improvements include updating traffic signals, installing waterless urinals, improving lighting and air conditioning at three county firehouses and replacing windows.

"It's a huge accomplishment that will save the citizens a ton of money," Commissioner Stan McClain observed. Congress passed President Barack Obama's $787-billion spending program in February.

Copyright © 2009 — All rights reserved. Restricted use only.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Racial Slurs Spray Painted on Confederate Monument

Channel 6 News WJBF-TV

Augusta, GA—The vandalism happened after dark, Sunday night, and based on the job, it looks like whoever is responsible had some time to finish their work. Spray painted on the Confederate monument in downtown Augusta was “Black power,“ “Cracker killers,“ and “I hate whites.“

Crews got most of the paint off, early Monday morning. They used expensive, heavy-duty graffiti remover on the tough stuff.

People we talked to say it’s disappointing to see this in 2009, but not everyone is totally surprised by it, either.

“It’s sad that it’s happening and that people are taking the time to vandalize buildings instead of encouraging one another. We’re here to encourage one another and build each other up, not tear each other down,“ says Hegar Moody, of Aiken, SC.

Richmond County Sheriff’s Office investigators were checking with local businesses, Monday, to see if any cameras caught the vandals in action. So far, there’s no word on any suspects.

Defacing a public monument is a felony, and if caught, the vandals could serve up to five years in jail.

Click on below link to view video:

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Unknown Civil War soldier to be reburied Oct. 10

Uniforned sentries stand guard while mourners exit the gates of Rest Haven Cemetery.
Photo by Robin Hood

FRANKLIN – The sons of two Civil War veterans who fought for separate causes will meet for the first time over the unearthed remains of an unknown soldier, whose body never made it home from the battlefield 145 years ago.

Harold Becker, 93, of Grand Rapids, Mich., and James Brown, Sr., 97, of Knoxville, Tenn., will join together to help re-inter the unknown soldier’s remains, discovered in a shallow grave during a commercial construction project on the field where 10,000 casualties fell in five hours at the Battle of Franklin on Nov. 30, 1864.

Becker’s father, Charles Conrad Becker, fought through the horrific battle at Franklin with the 128th Indiana Infantry, U.S.A., while Brown’s father, James H. H. Brown – 8th Georgia Infantry, C.S.A. – saw his regiment cut in half at Gettysburg. On Saturday, Oct. 10, they will shake hands over the new grave of an American soldier.

“Most folks don’t consider the sacrifice that these soldiers made, certainly on both sides,” said Robin Hood, a Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer who is chair of the City of Franklin’s Battlefield Task Force. “And his family was left alone, to eventually come to closure with the fact that he was killed in action in some field a thousand miles from home.”

Thousands like him were buried with simple gravestones marked Unknown, including approximately 750 in Franklin.

It is not known for which army the Unknown Soldier fought. A coffin containing his remains will lie in state at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church at 510 West Main Street in Franklin – the circa 1827 sanctuary which served as barracks for Federal troops during their occupation of the town in 1864 – from 8 a.m. on Thursday, Oct. 8 until the funeral ceremony at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 10. One Federal and one Confederate honor-guard sentry will be posted at the front doors of the church during the 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. visitation period each day and prior to the ceremony on Saturday morning.

The soldier will receive full military honors from re-enactors representing brothers-in-arms from both the United States and the Confederacy. On Saturday morning, a Union and a Confederate Chaplain will conduct a brief funeral service in the church. Following the service, the flag-draped casket will be borne from the church by uniformed pallbearers (Confederate and Federal) and placed on a waiting, horse-drawn caisson in front of the church.

Accompanied by a color guard, honor guard, period musicians, and hundreds of uniformed re-enactors, the caisson will travel down Main Street and around the Public Square to the Rest Haven Cemetery gates.

As the procession leaves St. Paul's and continues up Main Street, townspeople and visitors are invited to fall in behind the ranks of the marching re-enactors.

After arriving at Rest Haven Cemetery, a brief eulogy will be delivered by the chaplains, and will conclude with period-appropriate military honors including a 21-gun salute and the playing of “Taps” by a uniformed bugler.

Active participation in the ceremonies at Rest Haven and at St. Paul’s will be restricted to uniformed re-enactors, but the public is encouraged to view the ceremonies. Re-enactment units that wish to participate should contact Robert Huff at (615) 500-8211, or via email at

For more information, visit