Children of the Wind
Children of the Wind
Lost Children of the Confederacy
My growing up years was spent primarily as a vagabond in a land and culture foreign to myself! Early on I was never told of my Southern ancestry or that my forefathers had died fighting for the security and independence of the Confederacy. Therefore I was not raised or trained to know and understand that I was an heir of the most Christian, honorable and noble civilization ever to exist in 2,000 years of human history.
Still something burned deep within me, which caused me to know instinctively that I was out of place, a stranger in a foreign land. My heart was drawn to those things Confederate and Southern, even to the point of searching for the forbidden literature, while visiting the public library. I seemed to know without being told, those soldiers, their ladies and the children of the Confederacy, were my people. Thus I dedicate this short story to their memory; it is titled the ‘Children of the Wind – Lost Children of the Confederacy!’
The vile hatred of all things Confederate and Southern as expressed by the aggressive invasion, conquest, occupation and bitter reconstruction of the Confederate States of America by the Yankees fell heaviest on the innocent children. Our nation, cities and homes were burned; our women raped and murdered, the barbarians who came down upon us like a plague of locus desecrated even our houses of worship. These invaders murdered, robbed and destroyed indiscriminately.
In the process a large number of our Confederate Children having survived their atrocities simply vanished, many were believed kidnapped and transported north by the Yankees to be brain washed into their evil ways. These children would have their true identities taken from them, their rightful heritage lost; as a result they disappeared from history forever. Like the winds that often blow across the land, the ravages of an illegal and unconstitutional aggressive war, the lost children of the Confederacy carried these innocent children away.
Make no mistake ‘those people’ committed crimes which today would bring charges of crimes against humanity and war crimes, waging an aggressive war of conquest, and mass murder. In effect their war was never legitimate but rather constituted criminal action not unlike that of Joseph Stalin or Adolph Hitler! Those Yankees who participated were acting in opposition to every principle upon which their own nation was founded, in violation of international law as well as their own constitution to which they had foresworn.
They were neither heroes nor patriots but criminals of the most repugnant kind! Many today might reply in their defense, they were simply carrying out the orders of their president, but such an excuse did not prove to be justifiable at the Nuremberg trials after the Second World War nor would they do so in any other just court of law. The colonies had exercised their unalienable rights in seceding from Great Britain, so likewise did the Southern States in seceding from the United States. Never the less the greater atrocities were those committed against the Children of the Confederacy!
This explanatory prelude is furnished in order to set the stage in your mind as to the conditions, which existed during and after that horrible war. It is extremely easy after so many generations for the Yankee victors and their apologists, to claim these atrocities never occurred. Since them and their cohorts, the liberals of the public educational system, Hollywood and the mass media wrote the history we study, and in this case history has been revised in order to fit their politically correct liberal rendition of events.
Still nothing upon this earth can wash away the stain brought about by the evil, blood thirsty and extreme hatred that permeated the ranks of the Yankee invaders. While it is true the actual terminology such as war crimes and crimes against humanity did not exist at that time. None-the-less this will never cleanse them of the guilt of crimes so hideous that I dare not discuss them here, save to quote the following: “That the Southern People literally were put to the torture is vaguely understood, but even the historians have shrunk from the unhappy task of showing us the torture chambers.” --- Claude G. Bowers
The Closing Days of the War
12 April 1865
Our story begins in the closing days of the war, the Confederate States lay prostrate before Yankee Armies, which were committing all manner of despicable atrocities. Cities and towns were being invaded and pillaged; women and children were being burned out of their homes, their last morsel of food taken from them, rape, robbery and even dismemberment was taking place. Many of these same women and children were even burned alive, having been blocked from any means of escape from the flames, or else shot while fleeing the holocaust around about them. While today’s historical revisionists may use rhetoric, which softens the true story of what took place, we can only understand the magnitude of their evil, as being like unto to the barbarian hordes of past centuries or even dating back millenniums in comparison.
It is hard for the people of our time to comprehend a people so void of Christian Values, that in their blood lust they would even hold high Southern Babies on the end of bayonets in a drunken range. That anyone would believe ‘those people’s’ vile invasion and conquest of the Confederacy was somehow justified by a desire to ‘Save the Union’ is to alter the truth into an image straight from the own devils domain. Their descendants as well as others of Yankee Persuasion should look back in disgust and shame, that there own forefathers could be so filled with evil and hatred, inasmuch as there is nothing redeeming in there actions, for which to be proud.
It was 12 April 1865, word was beginning to spread across the Confederacy, and General Robert E. Lee had surrendered the Army of Northern Virginia a few days before. It would be only a matter of time that, one by one the other Army’s of the Confederate States would likewise, either surrender or disband. Federal General E.R.S. Canby had entered Mobile Alabama only a day after an evacuation carried out by Confederate General D.H. Maury, carried out without any further resistance. The Confederacy was rapidly falling under total occupation, the war would be lost due to overwhelming numbers and firepower on the part of the now revengeful Yankee invaders. General Maury marched his small army into Meridian Mississippi, which was one of the few retreats left open to him, but what was he to do now? Sherman was nearing Raleigh North Carolina where he would skirmish with General Johnston at Grant’s Creek. Maury rested his troops that night in hopes of coming up with some plan before he was forced to surrender or disband his own army. There was no sleep to be had that night and his rest was interrupted with tossing and turning as well as the noise outside. Then he came up with a strategy, which he was not totally certain, could win the war, but would also alter history.
He arose from his bed mustered his army and marched out of town and into the country side where a relatively secluded place was found in order to put his new strategy into action. It was the wee hours of the next morning and well before sunrise by the time they were settled into an encampment and Commander Maury was ready to inform his officers of his new plan. Men he said, is it obvious we are vastly outnumbered both in men and firepower. It will only be a matter of time before we must fight to the finish, disband or surrender! However I propose we disband before hand as a matter of strategy while we can do so under our own terms, and then carry our struggle onto a totally different king of battlefield. The few officers present looked at each other and Maury could hear them moaning, groaning and mumbling among themselves. Take it easy, we aren’t gong to become full time guerrilla fighters, rather in a certain sense of the word we will institute a type of political warfare. We will disband hide our weapons, regroup unarmed and in civilian cloths, but first I will need several dozens of our best riders, able to avoid detection whose mission will be to intercept Johnston, Beauregard and as many other commanders as possible.
My plan will be relayed to these commanders by chosen couriers who are able if possible to persuade them to participate! Many will not be able to disband their entire armies while they are face to face with the enemy, but sizeable numbers can manage to slip out of the area without being spotted. A completely different special rider will take a dozen men with him and make every attempt to locate President Jefferson Davis and his party as well as whomever might remain of the Confederate Government along the way. They will likely be found somewhere in North Carolina or Georgia by the time you arrive. You will seek his approval and cooperation with our plan, and then ask him to come with you in order to avoid capture by Yankee patrols. The Commander pulled out a hand drawn map of the backcountry of Tennessee. We will break up into smaller groups, those in command of each group will met at this location which is a tiny village northeast of Chattanooga in the Smokey Mountains: It is doubtful the Yankees will be able to locate us if we are careful not to draw undue attention to ourselves. According to my plan the bulk of our armies should locate an out of the way isolated location, and then send only their command officers to our Smokey Mountain encampment, thereby avoiding the assembling of so many of us in a single location.
Everyone will keep in touch through troops that go about unnoticed, which will be a secret system of express relays; I will be explained to you shortly. Do not write anything down out of fear you might be picked up by the Yankee Patrols who would then find the message located on our person. Otherwise as far as the Yankees are concerned our people will be veterans returning from the war. But avoid contact with them wherever possible, even if it means going out of your way! Those who have families and feel they have no other choice are welcome to return to their homes but remember you must remain loyal to the Confederacy and this command. In essence of my plan calls for making the Yankees believe we have totally given up the war and are returning home, therefore sufficient numbers of us will actually go through with the process of surrender for appearance sake. Those of you which are called upon to take part in the surrender will consider themselves as remaining an active member of this army and under oath you are under obligation to carry out such orders as may be given to you from time to time. If the other commanders are in agreement they should do likewise, in that way we transform our armies from a battlefield force to a political force. While at the same time remaining prepared to take up arms once again at the right time!
Daylight had still not come when dozens of teams consisting of three riders each departed the camp in different directions; their first chore would be to stay out of sight and transform themselves into civilians. These teams were to take advantage of whatever method of long distance travel which might present itself in order to quicken their arrival at their intended destination, by some miracle the bulk of the Confederate Armies were located well before they had managed to surrender. General Johnston was able to slip approximately half of his army out of camp before surrendering to Sherman and blamed the small size of his force on illness and desertions! So many of our men he explained, just felt like the war was over and decided to abandon the army and return home in time for the spring planting. A sizeable number of our Confederate Commanders with men still in the field were later able to reconstitute their armies within weeks after the surrender; others who had already surrendered by that time, were able to re-call a sizeable force. This was no doubt the most unusual strategy but none-the-less it appeared as if it would prove effective in the long term. These armies would be divided into to regiment size commands and dispersed throughout several communities.
As time passed the members of these armies would become undistinguishable from other civilians found in our towns and cities, accept they were in fact an organized army, which remained loyal to the Confederate States of America. The Yankees soon settled into occupying the Confederacy, believing the Confederate Armies no longer existed to trouble them! However there was still the matter or Jefferson Davis, his cabinet and a quorum of both houses of the Confederate States Congress, had not as yet been located. Unknown to the Yankees, a high level conference was even then underway in the Smokey Mountains and among the participants were the Confederate States Government as well as the bulk its Confederate Field Commanders. The larger portion of their armies having secretly reassembled and reconstituted themselves, sometime after they had surrendered! However now they would use the organization and discipline of military command to engage the enemy on the battlefield of politics, as well as the society at large. These Confederate Armies would move covertly among the Yankees, in order to pull the rug out from under the victors and peacefully take from them what they had gained in the war. The first phase was to regain the loyalty of sufficient numbers of our own people, who would afterward go about their normal civilian business quietly and unnoticed, while working secretly for the Confederacy. Any oath required of them by the Yankees, would not be considered valid, due to the circumstances of our having been conquered and occupied. These Yankee oaths beyond a doubt were forsworn as a result of force; therefore it was believed there was no obligation on their part to comply with them.
The Peaceful Prelude Begins
10 May 1865
While the Yankees were as busy as bees working and settling into the occupation, a plot to assonate President Abraham Lincoln was uncovered, side tracked and the conspirators were convinced to join the greater cause rather then to provoke the Yankees unnecessarily at what was deemed to be the wrong time, particularly in such a manner. President Davis stated in an interview that he would deal with Abraham Lincoln, when conditions were more favorable, and under circumstances more of our own choosing. While the Yankees continued to search for President Jefferson Davis and his administration, Davis himself issued his first orders to his armies since the new phase began. “The Confederate Army will organize themselves so as to have a General in Command of all forces within each individual State; this would include forces located covertly outside the borders of the Confederacy. These armies will assume the new identity and veneer of a charitable organization, then use this unique status as an outreach both to our own citizens as well as those who might potentially ally themselves with our cause.” General Robert E. Lee who had only recently decided to return to teaching as a professor, used this very concept to contact his generals. Jubal Early was given the command of all Confederate Forces within the State of Maryland, Albert Sidney Johnston was given command in Virginia, and John Bell Hood was given the command in Texas, and James Longstreet in Georgia.
General Lee then assigned a national General Staff, which would organize itself not unlike a corporate board of directors. The name chosen for the reorganized Confederate States Armies was the ‘Christian Aide Society’, which everyone agreed would allow them to truly help the needy while at the same time, strengthens the cause. President Davis then issued his second order which directed the armies to search for, locate and return the lost and missing children of the Confederacy to their rightful parents wherever possible or into the hands of community guardianship, where parents and other relatives cannot be located. Where parents might be endangered by the reunification with their children, they are to be moved and given new identities for the duration. The first orders went out that all Confederate Armies shall be instructed to maintain duel accent and mannerisms, the vernacular of the South as well as that of our Yankees occupiers, so they might mingle among them unawares. Our Southern values, including its accent, mannerisms and vernacular will be encouraged and enhanced, so as to ensure our culture will not be diminished by the Yankee presence among our numbers. A system of covert instructions shall be devised and carried out by every command! A team will be constituted which will create a Confederate Citizens Handbook, which will serve this purpose.
A very simple but effective system of passing messages was devised, by using crude commercial advertisements or hand written messages where the orders would be written in the vernacular of the vary charitable agency they were creating. The Confederate Army could now circulate among the people, multiply both its numbers and effectiveness, toward the day when the tables could be turned on our Yankee occupation forces. The impact of the Christian Aide Society was immediate and beyond a doubt a huge success, making it possible for the President to rightfully govern as the President of the Confederacy. The Copperheads of Illinois, Indiana, Ohio and New York were quick to reorganize under President Davis’s directives, whereupon each State constituted a Chapter in the national organization and each county or parish a subdivision. The charitable nature of the organization served to allow the Confederates and Copperheads to move among the people asking questions and serving the cause while at the same time offering aid and assistance where needed. Very quickly our Confederate Children were located in Chicago Illinois, Columbus Ohio as well as New York City, and legal maneuvers were manipulated so as to return them to the Confederacy, without arousing suspicion as to the true mission and purpose. In those cases where legal maneuvers would not work, the children were simply made to disappear and reappear, along with their true parents or Confederate guardians.
In the meantime those who sympathized with the Confederate Cause were contacted and our numbers continued to grow accordingly. Oddly enough the United States military would be used to train and equip our Confederate Forces who would then enlist secretly in the Confederate States Army, Navy and Marines. Young Confederates coming of age after the war were also carrying out the directives of President Davis and joining the U.S. Military for the purpose of the training and experience it offered. Their expectations were to serve a tour of service then return to their first allegiance, the Confederate States of America. President Jefferson Davis would move the Confederate States Government to various isolated locations, often enough to avoid their being located and captured, while maintaining the viability of government operations. Every possible effort was made to conceal their existence from the general population, while informing Confederate States Citizens of any pertinent government decisions. But the work was enormous and the strain was apparent among many of those who had to maintain family security as well as their work, while doing so under the strictest secrecy. In an address to the Confederate States Congress three months after the war, Jefferson Davis pointed out those areas of critical importance.
Among these was the priority of devising a system of elections, assuring that the electorate knew all candidates whiles their true candidacy remained unknown to the Yankees. The suggestion went forth to use the voter registration system as a means of screening both the candidates and the electorate in order to discover if they are Confederate loyalists or Yankees. This involved targeting those who were not loyalists rather then the reverse! Those who either cannot run for reelection stated Davis, such as your president, are encouraged to serve in another capacity. There is another issue which is not critical at present but will become a priority once victory is achieved, that of bringing about an improvement to our Confederate States Monetary System. We can use this period of occupation to devise better methods of coining and printing money; thereby our people would have a sound monetary system, well supported with gold and silver, toward the day when we are once more an independent nation.
The War Crimes Tribunal
26 May 1865
General Lee’s Confederate General Staff, which had organized like unto a corporate board as a front for the Confederate State Armies, also served as a kind of board of governors and a liaison between the Confederate State Government in hiding, and the remainder of the Confederacy, including the army and the citizens at large. An ever-increasing number of former officers and enlisted members, who had served the cause so valiantly during the war years, were coming onboard to serve and even greater purpose in peace. However there was serious business at hand and Davis would burn the mid-night oil on many occasions. Secretary of State Joseph P. Benjamin was sent on a secret mission to meet with the British Government in London Secretary of War James A. Seddon who had considered leaving the government, decided otherwise after becoming confronted early on, with the evils of the coming reconstruction. Secretary Seddon after conferring with President Davis was off on a five-city tour of Washington, Baltimore, Boston, New York and Chicago. His mission was to devise a plan whereby the industrial war structure of the United States would be brought under Confederate working control, if not outright ownership. His long-term mission would be to greatly expand in such a manner, so as to rearm the Confederate States Armed Forces, including the Navy and Marines. Any strategy devised, must have as its ultimate goal to field an armed force of such numbers and firepower, the United States could never stand against it, thereby they would be left with no other option then to capitulate. All this must be accomplished under their very noses, yet at the same time without their having any knowledge, as to what was happening.
On 26 May 1865 President Davis directed General Lee to constitute a military tribunal for the purpose of bring to trial those known to have committed atrocities against the good citizens of the Confederacy. This would also include the appointment of Confederate Military Marshals who would track down arrest and deliver these people to justice. Their capture was to be carried out in such a manor as to make it seem like a disappearance or accidental death. While at the same time delivering the accused unharmed before the War Crimes Tribunal of the Confederacy. While Davis was drafting these orders and directives a message reached his desk that an additional 2,000 lost children of the Confederacy had been located in Ohio and Indiana. These children are in fair to good health and were now in seclusion, pending reunification with their parents. However Davis stood up, walked out of his tent, which was serving as his Confederate Whitehouse office, in an almost staring gaze he looked at the scene before him, the Great Smokey Mountains. He had just read that information has been uncovered indicating a third of these children’s parents had been murdered by roving bands of barbaric Union Forces, both during and after the end of hostilities, their homes looted and burned. Davis turned to his Vice President Alexander H. Stephens who while somewhat reluctant during the war years, was now fully onboard and for the same reason as others, the unfolding course of reconstruction. Since they were alone, Davis addressed him informally, Alex he said, would you make arrangements for all of our senior officers to read this message. Most certainly Mr. President, consider it done! I appreciate your efforts in making contact with those few elements of the United States Government, which are in agreement with us.
The president was busy conferring with members of his cabinet as well as various military officers when General Robert E. Lee slowly entered, reporting in full uniform, opened the tent flap, and made his presence known with a salute, Mr. President please forgive me if I’ve interrupted your meeting with these gentlemen. No, of course not General Lee, you are just the man to lift my spirits! Well maybe after making my report, you may well be pleased, but how high your spirit is lifted I wouldn’t care to guess. Please continue, Davis replied; well the War Crimes Tribunal has been formed and among its members is Lieutenant General S.B. Buckner who had returned to New Orleans, after the surrender and General Edmund Kirby Smith, who is now back in Florida. There are two other officers who have agreed to serve, such as General Richard Taylor of Virginia and General John C. Pemberton, presently still in Mississippi. The last gentleman selected is a Mr. Lamdin P. Milligan, who is a Copperhead, the only civilian given a sentence of death and executed by the Yankees, for his support of the Confederate Cause. Naturally Mr. President if there are any changes or additions, you need only say so and I’ll see that it is done. After taking a moment to consider Lee’s choices, Davis look at the General; your choices of men to sit on the War Crimes Tribunal is most interesting. None-the-less I do agree, particular you naming Mr. Milligan; they shall all receive a Presidential Commission. On a slightly different issue I have appointed Mr. President, subject to your approval, General Beauregard as Commander of Confederate Forces in South Carolina. An excellent choice General Lee, replied Davis!
Where are we at the present moment in rounding up those who have committed atrocities against our people? Well Mr. President, allow me to offer you a birthday gift a day early! Please do General, what have you? Just for openers we have General Philip H. Sheridan and Benjamin F. Butler who are even as we speak, under confinement in the upper hills of the Shenandoah’s. We expect to bring in Generals Ulysses S. Grant and William T. Sherman within the week! I have for your review three newspapers, New York, Boston and Baltimore, which have published the story of Sheridan and Butler’s disappearance. Obviously the press has no ideas as to how these men may have disappeared or where they might be! I would think Mr. President; the conditions of their arrest should meet your specifications. While glancing over the three newspapers President Davis replied; they most certainly do meet my specifications. Just as I had hoped, there is no way to trace their disappearance back to confederate activity. Very good General Lee, very good indeed! How many Marshals have you recruited for this project General Lee? We have what I believe to be a pleasant problem, an over abundance of applicants. Presently we have sworn in approximately 5,000 Marshals, many of them have already participated in the arrests just reported. These are men who I feel have both the character and experience for the job. Dear Lord General that is more Marshals then those who serve the United States, stated Davis. You realize General; the day will ultimately come, wherein as we are placing their generals on trial, we must also bring charges against Abraham Lincoln himself, who is their Commander in Chief. Naturally, stated Davis, we will want to wait until we are in a much stronger position!
The Tribunal Brings Charges
2 June 1865
General Lee, must you depart shortly or can you stay for yet another day so we might discuss pressing issues more thoroughly? No Mr. President, I need not depart now and another day will not interrupt my schedule. College is in a summer recess so my duties there are minimal, pending the fall semester and my Confederate duties are under your own cognizance. Very good noted Davis, I’d like to get back to the cabinet meeting, and it would please me if you would sit in on the discussions. I hesitate to say how I might add anything constructive, but at your command I am please to remain and join the cabinet meeting. Yes indeed General Lee, you can contribute, stated Davis! We are discussing how we might carryout the 1866 elections for national, state and local offices, while at the same time not arousing suspicion. We are presupposing it would be best to hold our elections on the same day as the U.S. Federal Elections, whereby we can take advantage of the large numbers of people already on the move. Well Mr. President, in that regard, I propose we use encoding on the application for voting as well as on the ballot, which would mean nothing to non-Confederates, but would serve as to inform our people, of a Confederate Candidates seeking office. These candidates naturally cannot openly proclaim themselves at present, but they can rule through surrogates which are acceptable to the Yankees, yet who are willing to serve the cause. You have such surrogates in mind General? Well yes, the word is leaking out in the form of a rumor that the Confederacy is still alive, and will raise again in the not to distant future. A sizeable portion of the Negro population is prepared to assist us, since many of them did voluntarily support the Confederacy during the war. Are they expecting some form of compensation? Nothing in the normal sense: what they want is merely an equal chance in society, no special benefits or favors, just the right to compete in society on equal terms. They have indicated they will do whatever is required of them, after these conditions are met! I agree General; we can live with their terms, as long as they expect no favoritism or special benefits.
Just as General Lee and the Confederate Cabinet had finished their discussions a commotion was heard just outside the entrance to the Presidential Tent, both Davis and Lee arose to see what was causing the disturbance. Perhaps said General Lee, my surprise guest has arrived, howbeit a little late! A surprise guest General, who might that be? General John Hunt Morgan Mr. President! As the two men exited the tent, followed by several of the Cabinet members, General John Hunt Morgan himself approached, gave a sharp salute and reported: Mr. President, General John Hunt Morgan at your service, sir. Forgive my unusual response General but why aren’t you dead? General Morgan smiled and replied: Mr. President, my apologies, but “the reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.” The president then replied: What about the reports of your death on 3 September last year near Knoxville Tennessee? Regretfully another individual, a private, had been killed in that same skirmish and happened to looked somewhat like myself, so I switched uniforms and walked away from my own funeral. I am under the impression that you have a few ideas to offer, as to how you might serve the cause, given your peculiars talents, replied Davis. May we go inside, where we all might hear what you have to say? As the men entered the tent, General Morgan gave the President, the Cabinet and the several generals assembled, his ideas for a Confederate Military Intelligence unit, which would be under his command, if approved by President Davis. A discussion followed, after which President Davis endorsed General Morgan’s proposal, then commissioned him to begin the creation of the Confederate Intelligence Command. General Morgan ended his presentation by remarking, The Yankees believe me to be dead, and now I can use this as a weapon against them! They will not likely be looking for me, since in their eyes I died on 3 September of last year. Everyone agreed and offered their sincere prayers for his success!
Oh I must not forget Mr. President, I have a guest myself who is very special and I am sure you will understand when you met him. He is a little orphan boy who was severely injured by roving bands of Yankees during the war. He was so severely mangled he is not expected to live more then a few more months, when asked what we could do for him, he replied: “I’d like to meet President Jefferson Davis, so I will know he is still lives.” By all means General Morgan, show the young lad in, so we might have the privilege of meeting him, stated President Davis. As Davis finished what he was saying, an aide of General Morgan carried the little boy in and presented him to the President: The little boy was far to weak and crippled to walk on his own, but he did manage to speak up immediately: You are President Jefferson Davis, I know from the pictures I’ve seen of you! Davis smiled and replied, most certainly lad, now who might you be? I am Jimmy Mangrum, and I am so proud to have finally got to meet my president! May I ask Jimmy, who has done this to you and why, if you feel like telling me? The Yankees wanted my mother to tell them where to find General Morgan and we both refused, so they burned our house and killed my mother. Did you know where to find General Morgan, asked the president? Of course I knew, we both knew exactly were he was! What about your father? My father rode with General Morgan and died during one of his raids! Just about then Varina Davis the First Lady of the Confederacy, entered and approached. May we keep little Jimmy here, she asked her husband, the President? The President looked at Morgan, expecting an answer: Most certainly, I am sure it would be all right; I see no reason why he couldn’t. Jimmy was now the ward of the President and First Lady of the Confederate State of America, which drew smiles from everyone, including the little boy himself. As Generals Lee and Morgan were exiting the tent, Davis asked one last question of the departing General Morgan. General is it possible to locate those who have done this and bring them to justice? Not necessary Mr. President, I took care of it myself during the war and they have all went on to meet the Supreme Judge of all creation.
The Trial of the Infamous Four
4 July 1865
The War Crimes Tribunal was convened early on the morning of 4 July 1865, at an especially prepared secret location in Vicksburg Mississippi, the city that suffered starvation and death unlike anything imaginable, outside of those who had experienced it first hand. There were four prisoners brought before the tribunal on this date, Generals Philip H. Sheridan, Benjamin F. Butler, William T. Sherman and Ulysses S. Grant. Grant was on trial primarily for his complacency as Commander of the Army of the Potomac, in permitting those under his command to ravage the land, committing all manner of crimes including mass murder against innocent unarmed citizens. There would be a total of five men sitting as jurors: Generals S.B. Buckner, Edmund Kirby Smith, Richard Taylor, John C. Pemberton and Lambdin P. Milligan. Since Ulysses S. Grant, Commander of Union Forces was on trial; General Robert E. Lee himself would sit as Judge of the Tribunal. The trial was held in what had been an enlarged basement of a now abandoned farmhouse on the edge of town where at least 50 people had starved to death during the Siege of Vicksburg. The basement had been altered to where it now appeared as a typical courtroom, which might have been found in any city or town throughout the Confederacy, prior to the war. There was a jury box off to the right as would be viewed by spectators and the Judges Bench was directly to the front and center. There were two large tables standing in the center with a comfortable amount of space between both the jury box and the Judges Bench. Behind the large tables was a wooden rail with about two dozen chairs carefully lined up in well positioned rows the jury box in this case had only five seats for jurors! There were so many people which suffered as a result of these men’s atrocities, that only a sampling of the various types of cases were chosen to sit as spectators. The two lawyers who would try the case were: General William Ruffin Cox for the prosecution and General William Andrew Quarles for the defense. Both men were experienced attorneys and General Quarles had also been a sitting district judge in Memphis Tennessee, prior to the war. The spectators, defendants, court clerk and court reporter being present in court with Confederate troops serving as bailiffs; at 7:55 the five jurors filed in and took their seats. At precisely 8:00 A.M. on 4 July 1865 the bailiff on duty ordered all to rise, and he repeated what would become an often heard phrase ‘God Bless the Confederate States of America and this honorable court.’ The honorable Judge Robert E. Lee then entered and took his seat on the bench; afterwards the court took their seats. Both the Judge and the five men Jury were dressed in clean sharp Confederate Gray Uniforms! Lee opened the court with the pronouncement: Those who have business before this court may now approach the bench, stated Judge Lee.
The two lawyers then approached the judge’s bench and stated their case, followed by a reading of the charges against each man by the Court Clerk. Judge Lee then explained prior to the court beginning its proceedings, that given the restraints of time and circumstances, separate trials are not possible, therefore a combined trial will be held in these cases. None-the-less, both the prosecution as well as the defense shall conduct themselves according to the highest judicial standards. We are not here to debate the finer elements of the law, but rather that of innocence, regarding the charges leveled against these men. The issue as to the authority of the Confederates States to bring these men to trail shall not be a question before this War Crimes Tribunal. Judge Lee faced the two lawyers and instructed them to begin the trial, at which time they return to their respective tables, Attorney William Ruffin Cox began his opening arguments for the prosecution, as he approached the jury. After approximately 15 minutes Attorney William Andrew Quarles presented his opening defense, before that same jury. The trial would now begin in earnest; many witnesses for both defense and prosecution, were necessarily spectators in the courtroom, since they would be endangered if brought in as singles witnesses.
In the case of General Ulysses S. Grant, there were witnesses who were present in his headquarters tent and testified that he was made aware of the atrocities committed by General Philip H. Sheridan, yet took no action to halt the practice. General Sheridan couldn’t overcome the witnesses and written testimony against him, which gave evidence to his being on the scene and ordering the burning of homes, knowing innocent people were inside, who were predominantly women, children and the elderly. Many privates in the Union Army were so outraged by the crimes committed by their fellow soldiers; they switched sides after the war and swore allegiance to the Confederacy. Then there was General William F. Butler commonly known as Butcher Butler! Three different women testified in tears, as to the vile behavior of a man they referred to as the Devil Incarnate, even to the extend of bayoneting a pregnant women as well as children, who would not respond to them in the manor in which they had demanded. Then there came William T. Sherman the firebug who not only burned Atlanta and shelled a town filled with innocent and unarmed civilians, but permitted and encouraged his soldiers to go on a rampage of murder, robbery, rape and torching of homes through out the State of Georgia. All these crimes and more were committed in obedience to Presidential Orders, and the winning of a war to prevent a people and nation from gaining their unalienable right to independence.
No one, not even the defendants themselves could argue these two lawyers did not do an excellent job of prosecuting and defending their case. Few lawyers across the land would have gone to such extremes, under the restrictive conditions then in place, in order to ensure these men received a fair trial: justice which had been denied those which had been terrorized and tormented even unto death, by these criminals. Once witness after witness as well as a volume of tangible evidence in support of both defense and prosecution had been presented, both sides finally rested their case at about 2:00 P.M. that very afternoon. Judge Lee then ordered the Jury to retire and consider the issue of guild or innocence, on each of the charges, in the case of all four of these men. There was nowhere possible for the remainder of the court to retreat in order to receive a refreshment and relaxation, but there was a side room with water and sanitation facilities. While the jury was out Sherman asked of the Defense Attorney, do they really have the authority to try us on these charges? To which their attorney answered: Did you gentlemen have the authority to enter our homeland, pillage, burn, rape and murder indiscriminately? At 4:00 P.M. the court was ordered back into secession, where upon all four men were found guilty on all counts, and the judgment of the court was handed down shortly afterward; death by hanging for Sherman, Sheridan and Butler.
The ruling of Judge Lee was that all three of these men were not only found guilty as charged, but had disgraced the military profession of soldiery. Lee in pronouncing sentence upon these three declared that since the City of Vicksburg was reduced to starvation and surrender on 4 July 1863, we have therefore held this trial on this particular date and at this place in order to demonstrate justice served on their behalf. The sentence is hereby ordered carried out prior to 10:00 P.M. this evening at the place so designated in the sentencing, only General Ulysses S. Grant shall be offered execution by firing squad with the honors afforded his rank. The other three shall be stripped of their rank insignias as well as all other military accoutrements prior to carrying out the sentence. All four men shall be buried in unmarked graves as part and partial of their shame in heaping such torment, suffering and death upon the innocent. A full report shall be made to Jefferson Davis, President of the Confederate States of America! The sentencing having been rendered Butler couldn’t hold his peace: “But we won the war, he screamed.” Judge Lee normally would never have replied in such a situation, but given the extent of Butler’s crimes he turned to him and stated: General Butler, you were destined for this day in court, the moment you took up arms and aimed your weapons at those who are innocent and unarmed. Take them all away, he ordered! Then as Lee descended from the bench he was heard saying more to himself then to anyone else: A distasteful thing this is, however necessary it might be!
Funeral of Jimmy Mangrum
1 July 1865
It was mid-morning when a Presidential aide approached President Davis, who was then walking along a small pathway through the woods near the edge of the encampment, more as an exercise and refreshment from his work, then anything else. The aide a Mr. John Silage approached the President; Mr. President my apologies for disturbing your walk sir, but regretfully I have bad news of a personal nature. Please do continue Mr. Silage! Little Johnny Mangrum the crippled boy has passed away not more then 15 minutes ago while napping! As you know, it was not uncommon for him to take a mid-morning nap, but when he slept more quietly then usual, Missus Davis, being concerned for the boy’s well being looked in on him, while she was about her morning chores. She entered, and upon seeing the boy unusually still, the Missus checked on the boys breathing and found him to be dead. The President followed his aide as they walked over to the tent where the boy had been sleeping, so the President might see for himself. After holding the boys now still hand and expressing his condolences quietly, he reminisced over the joy the boy had brought to the lives of those in the encampment, during his short life among them. Then he turned to his aide and asks if arrangement were being made for a suitable funeral for the lad. Mr. Silage replied that a Sergeant known as Joseph Millage who is serving in the company, which guards the President, had lost a son during the war, similar to the age of this boy.
The Sergeant was not able to attend his own son’s funeral, and requested that he be granted the honor of arranging the funeral for Jimmy Mangrum. Davis simply looked down at the boy, then at his aide and replied; most certainly, tell the kind Sergeant to make arrangements suitable to his memory. It is my wish that he be laid to rest with respect, and surrounded by those who loved him and enjoyed his presence. The next morning the funeral was held at 8:00 A.M. were little Jimmy Mangrum was to be laid to rest in a small clearing nearby which had served as a graveyard for several Confederate Soldiers who had passed away during their stay at the encampments, while it was located in the area. Not long after his arrival many of the ladies had came together and fashioned a small Confederate Uniform, it was decided it would be most proper to have him dressed in the uniform he loved so much. During the funeral procession a rifle salute was arranged using a musket rifles but without the normal full powder charges due to the need to refrain from attracting unwanted attention. It was known that sounds can echo across these Smokey Mountains and be heard a good distance away. After the Confederate Army Chaplain hat given his eulogies, President Davis spoke up in regards to the boy’s short life.
The President began to speak: This little boy whose life has been cut so terribly short by the ravages of war, has nonetheless brought tremendous joy to our lives, during the short time he has spent among us. In remembering the story of his life, it has come to my attention that few have suffered more then this innocent little boy, who had expressed his desire that if he could live, he’d want to grow up to be a Confederate Soldier. However many of us would agree, he has been soldier enough already, having served his nation to the very end of his life. Therefore I have decreed that Jimmy Mangrum shall be buried. as the soldier he truly was and with military honors. The President then paused as muffled gunfire was heard a short distance away. Afterward prayers were offered over the little Jimmy Mangrum, a Soldier of the Confederacy. The Sergeant, who had arranged the services, was chosen to make the final remarks with a few comments of his own, then close in prayer. This little soldier the Sergeant Millage said: would have liked have survived long enough, to have live, as a citizen in a free and independent Confederate States of America. He would have loved to be able to contribute more then he has already done, in his short lifetime. Therefore it is for us the living to finish the work, which was the joy of his life, and make this boys dream come true. Let us help make little Jimmy’s dream a living reality, a free and independent Confederate States of America.
Bi-Annual Elections Successful
8 November 1865
The bi-annual elections came and went and were successful for the Confederate States of America for several reasons! While it is true the Yankee occupiers would not permit anyone who had supported the Confederate States during the war, to seek election and it was also true that approximately 80 percent of all whites were denied access to the ballot box. However, sufficient support was garnered from loyal Negroes whereby the Confederate States Government was able to implement its surrogate program. An overwhelming number of those elected were indeed Negroes, surrogates and the actual fielding of Negroes was not instituted by the Yankees for their benefit, but as a punishment of white Southerners who had brought abut the secessions and creation of the Confederacy. Unknown to the Yankees 90 percent of all victorious candidates in the election were actually representing what came to be known as, blind Confederate Candidates. The Davis Administration designed the process, so as to be similar to the Electoral College process, which is the constitutional body that actually elects the president. When people voted for a presidential candidate, many did not realize they were actually voting for a slate of electors, whereby whichever slate happens to win, will take their seat as members of the Electoral College and thereby elect the presidential candidate of their choice.
In the case of these bi-annual elections the process was reversed, and the surrogate candidates were the ones listed on the ballot, in the stead of the actual candidates. This has served as an example as to how an election system can be made to work during the occupation. It was necessary for the surrogate candidate to actually take office; however arrangements were made, that when the right moment had come, an appropriate bill would be quickly passed by the legislature and signed by the Governor, declaring that the actual winners of the election, were those so named in the text of the bill itself. The bill had been drafted in advance of the time, so it could be quickly sent to the floor of the legislature. The Negroes involved have foresworn the Oath required by the Yankees in taking office, but this oath would be considered invalid from the beginning due to force having been used, and only the Confederate State National Oath would be considered effective. This would be the oath taken by the actual candidates! The concept was that the presently seated State Government was nothing more then puppets of the Yankee occupation, and held no validity whatsoever. The true candidates were sworn into office secretly as members of the various State Governments being held under occupation, which remained member States of the Confederacy. Every effort was therefore made to avoid even the perception that there would be two State Governments, within each of the member States of the Confederacy. Therefore it was established that one was invalid and the other the legitimate, freely elected lawful and constitutional government of these individual states.
The word was passed among the Citizens of the Confederate States, that any bill passed into law by a Yankee occupation State Government, would not be considered a legitimate and constitutional law of the State in which it was passed, save only that the final bill recognizing the true State governments. Only those laws passed by the real State Governments would be granted lawful and constitutional recognition. These newly elected State Officials scattered throughout the Confederacy would all be sworn into office by years end and nearly all of the real State Governments, would go into session on schedule the first quarter of the New Year. It was expected that when the time came for the transition, there would undoubtedly be a small percentage of those in the puppet government, who would refuse to step down and acknowledge the real State Governments, so arrangements were made for their quiet removal without the necessity of a public spectacle. The recent bi-annual election was in some ways a trial run for the 1867 Confederate States Presidential Elections, should the nation remain under occupation. The Confederate States President was forbidden by the constitution, from seeking or holding a second term. Additionally, many Congressman and Senators could not continue due to declining health and other reasons. There would undoubted be those who would not be returning to their former public office, such as Jefferson Davis, and these were urged to seek other ways in which to serve the cause, when the time came.
Confederate Diplomacy Becomes Effective
9 April 1866
There have been several areas in which the Confederate States Government has been exceptionally successful; among these were the infiltration by loyal Confederates into nearly all of the essential military and governmental sectors. Confederates for example filled many critical positions at the U.S. Mint by the spring of1866 and this would be most important to a Confederate victory. Another is General John Hunt Morgan’s penetration of the Yankee intelligence network such as it was at that time. On the industrial side of the equation, General Morgan has made it possible for our people to gain a solid foothold in the creation of Yankee weapons production, sales and distribution network. None of these have ever been up to the present time, a sophisticated structural organization, yet it exists, as fractured as it may seem on the surface. Still, it was sufficient to allow President Davis to call for the rearming of the Confederate States Army, Navy and Marines which were by this time, several times larger then they had been at their peek during the war years. The Confederate growth in numbers has been in large part, due to the wide acceptance of our cause by the masses of the people, particularly by so many Copperheads of the north. It was believed at the time by a large segment of society both north and south, the war had been unjust and the treatment of the South has been atrocious. However very few saw any outlet for their rage, until covert Confederate operations began. The reinvigorated Confederate States Armed Forces would rise quietly and covertly leaving our Yankee occupiers unawares, but in any case unable to cope with our growing number and firepower. When that day should come when the Confederacy arises again from occupation, they will by design, be perceived to be everywhere and at the same time nowhere.
However by this date in April 1866 the Confederate States of America had progressed from the total capitulation of its armies, to where it now stood on the threshold of the most amazing rebirth ever exemplified by any nation in history. Covert activity had reach mammoth proportions as Confederate Agents went to work in seemingly every city and town, both north and south, in an effort to make certain all possible avenues were covered, whereby the Yankees could never wage another war against the Confederacy. Even the women and many of the children join in the action, knowing there was absolutely no option of failure. Every facet of the Yankee military complex from weapons design to their delivery into the hands of the soldiers, whose ability to use them was quickly being neutralized. The tactic being used was similar to placing a frog in water, then very slowly rising the temperature. In this example the retched creature would have no inkling he is being boiled alive! The strategy calls for gradually bring their entire supply system either under Confederate Control, or else at the very least making sure all weapon systems were rendered useless. An example has been that of their rail system, rather then planning on destroying endless miles of rails, every single railroad engine in their inventory was located, tracked and tagged, whereby these engines could be damaged sufficiently to render them unusable for the duration if necessary.
Effort were instituted to make sure at least three agents had infiltrated every single Navy War Ship in their fleet, a majority of those selected were Copperheads which can speak the language of the Yankees. All of them have been trained in multiple methods of ceasing a warship and causing its complete destruction if necessary! It is as if the Confederacy began to grow thousands of arms or tentacles, each having equal number of fingers on their extremities, which reached into every area of Lincoln’s Union. In addition the Confederacy’s diplomatic efforts began to pay huge dividends early on, having been carried out in the most secretive manor. While there had been no open diplomatic recognition of the Confederacy, which officially does not exist in international circles, still a growing number of European nations have agreed to provide troops if necessary, in order to prevent another bloodbath at the hands of Yankee invaders. In effect they would intervene when hostilities appeared imminent, whereupon United States would be warned that Europe would combine its forces and move against them, crushing them if circumstances required. The superpowers of Europe had all signed onboard, Britain, France, Germany as well as the Austro-Hungarian Empire. The Emperor of the Austro-Hungarians sent even a secret message to President Davis, stating that if the United States wanted another war with the Confederacy, we Europeans would show them what war is really about, and wipe them from the face of the earth.
When the critical hour comes the Emperor continued, the United States will settle their differences with the Confederacy, peacefully or else they would perish. There will be only a single warning given to them, which shall be clearly stated so that no one could possibly misinterpret its intended message. That message should it become necessary, be signed by all the powers of Europe! The Emperors message assured President Davis that upon his request; a combined war fleet will sail from several key ports on the Continent and commence the destruction of the United States Fleet, then begin the blockade of their ports and the landing of massive armies on their shores. We Europeans will settle our own differences sufficiently to bring these events to the fore. The Emperor stated: Before the American Government speaks on the issue of democracy in Europe; they shall first be taught how to live according to its rules at home. The Emperor stated, we admit to being an Empire, but the United States is an empire in denial of their true nature and character. Jefferson Davis had just settled himself after yet another move to a secluded location, located in the Blue Ridge Mountains, but soon turned his attention to the letter, which lay on his desk from the Emperor of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. It had been little more then a year since his armies began their surrender, but the process was interrupted by General Dabney Maury’s most timely strategy! Still he knew all to well that changing conditions between nations could unravel all of their diplomatic work at the very moment victory seemed possible, and he also knew he had no choice but to move while the Confederacy held all the options.
The Presidential Council of War
10 May 1866
President Davis decided he could not allow the opportunity to pass, believing world conditions as well as the situation with the United States could change, drastically eliminating any possible chance for throwing off the shackles of occupation, and gaining the Confederacy’s independence. Therefore he decided to call Presidential Council of War and would include in this most critical of all meetings, his Presidential Cabinet. It was on that very morning on schedule, the Confederate General Staff under General Robert E. Lee, included the Commanders of the Army, Navy and Marines, filed into his tent, which had been enlarged since the government’s arrival in the Blue Ridge Mountains. The President has insisted on the inclusion of his Commander of Confederate Military Intelligence, General John Hunt Morgan. The Secretary of State Judah P. Benjamin had only recently returned from Italy, where he conferred secretly with the Pope as well as the Prime Minister, who had given their full support behind a European unity plan in order to prevent unnecessary bloodletting. The others present at that meeting were the Secretary of the Navy Stephen R. Mallory, Secretary of War James A. Seddon, the previous Envoy to England now Secretary of the Treasury James M. Mason and the Postmaster General John H. Regan. Many of these men had traveled a long distance, in order to arrive at what was billed as a most urgent of all meetings. As the commotion began outside, President Davis exited the tent, wanting to be on hand to greet the party upon their arrival on such a beautiful day.
It was agreed the men would assemble themselves at another secret location earlier in order to arrive together and this also helped to throw off anyone who might have attempted to follow them, and thereby discover the new encampment of the Confederate States Government. As the party dismounted and the Presidents Military Aides led the horses away, the men were escorted inside the tent, to where the meeting would take place. As the meeting got underway the President began to speak: Allow me a few opening comments, not all of which are related to the purpose for which for which you were asked to come. First I’d like to welcome each of you, while hoping your trip was not too unpleasant, possibly even uneventfully and for reasons known to everyone. Some of you may have met the gentleman I am about to introduce, while others may know of him by reputation only, the former Colonel now General John Singleton Mosby. As he spoke General Mosby entered the tent, and saluted his President upon arriving in their midst. The President continued: I had sought the then Colonel Mosby for some time, wanting to add his talents to those now available to the cause of our independence, and having located him, then offered him a Commission as a General in the Confederate States Army. He graciously accepted and now I’d like General Mosby to speak for himself!
General Mosby began: I met General Morgan not long after he had created our Military Intelligence Unit and join with him and formed a command whose mission was to scout, locate and document all of the Yankees military weapons and ammunitions supply depots, which included mapping a strategy for either confiscating or destroying them. Our command’s ultimate goal after speaking with General Morgan would involve Confederates making use of these weapons and ammunition or at the very least, deny Yankees their use. The other half of the strategy involves cutting off the head of the snake, meaning we locate and document all Yankee Military Command Headquarters as well as the location of their troops. This would prove to be an ongoing process as moves and transfers take place, we have to date managed to keep pace. My own command includes a large portion of those which rode with me during the war, many of the others have since joined other Confederate Commands, and many new recruits have joined our numbers. What have developed have been a two-pronged intelligence network, one aimed at the military, and the other at the civilian side. The civilian side of the strategy might best come from General Morgan himself! General Morgan began: The civilian side of the strategy involves doing as General Mosby has done with the military, scouting, locating and documenting all critical elements in the civilian sector such as government departments, their agencies and contacts in the industrial sector. A complete map as it were, has been drawn of precisely how the Yankee Government is able to maintain control from the top down.
We are not speaking solely of the organizational structure of the federal government in Washington, and how its tributaries reach out to the States and local communities, but of how it does its job on a day-to-day basis. We have therefore mapped their communications, transport of supplies, equipment and troop locations; the idea being to cut the lifelines of communications of the Yankees and leave each element isolated and unarmed in practical terms. We have therefore pinpointed on the map where our troops need to be located, the mission of each command as well as how they fit into the over all picture. We are as ready as can be expected and our intelligence is not only sufficient, but it has been implemented into a workable strategy for victory. Perhaps it would be best if General Lee explains the process from here! General Lee stepped forward while an aide brought him the map he had brought with him, which was unrolled on the table, so all could see more clearly. Generals Mosby and Morgan have shown how our intelligence has been gathered and integrated into a single strategy, and a set of tactics developed which can bring us victory. While looking at the map of the States and territories, you will notice each location marked which is critical to our success. Our troops have been secretly moved into place, in numbers proportionate to their mission, and it should be noted that since the ending of hostilities the numerical advantage has shifted in our favor, by a three to one ratio, and we are speaking here of combat ready troops and not merely administrative personnel.
Secretary of War Seddon then join in the conversation: What we are saying Mr. President is that we have progressed beyond anything thought possible 14 months ago, when the idea was first conceived of switching to the format we are working under today. We are now ready to take on the Yankee, not from the standpoint of prolonging an inevitable defeat, but from that of a far superior position. Even more, when one considers we have maintained such thorough secrecy, the Yankees don’t even know we exist, beyond a few scattered bands of holdouts. While they are still looking for you Mr. President and several members of your cabinet, they feel like they have complete control of the situation. Over the past year we have totally reversed the situation to where now, our armies and agents are like an octopus with tentacles in every aspect of their government, military, industry and society. Secretary of State Benjamin then added his comments: Everything possible that could be done has been done, to insure we have all the necessary foreign support. If either of our two nations were to be blockaded this time, it will be the Yankees, and if either of us is to be overwhelmed by superior numbers and firepower, it will be they themselves. Even the Postmaster General made his own contribution: Every effort has been made to infiltrate their postal system to the degree that we could take control of that portion, which exists within the Confederacy and give our people adequate postal services very quickly. This will prove important to a newly independent Confederacy!
The Secretary of the Treasury James M. Mason who had held back, now made his opinions known: The Confederate States Treasure is in better condition then it has been at any time since the beginning of the war.
"If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest for freedom, go home and leave us in peace. We seek not your council nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen." --Samuel Adam