Saturday, October 1, 2011

EWGS 2011 October Workshop "The Yankees vs the Rebels"

Saturday October 1, 2011 the Fall EWGS workshop. The speaker Dr. George Schweitzer and his subject the Civil War. The workshop was at the Country Homes Christian Church at 8415 N. Wall in Spokane, Washington.

The first session was on the background and causes of the Civil War. Almost everyone knows that slavery and preserving the union were important causes, but he told of one I don't think I have heard before. The election of 1860 elected Abraham Lincoln, but it also eliminated the majority of Senators that the south had enjoyed since the Revolution.

He then went on to talk about slavery and the Constitution and the views of the founding fathers, Most did not want slavery and they tried to get it eliminated in the Constitution, but the southern states refused to sign if it mentioned slavery. My favorite quote was from Benjamin Franklin in 1789: "Slavery is such an atrocious debasement of human nature, that it may sometimes open a source of serious evils", and of course 72 years later the Civil War starts "a serious evil".

Notice the hat above, this one is a Confederate cavalryman hat and now he is giving the Southern Interpretation for the Civil War. Dr. Schweitzer tells how god has made slavery in the south such an astounding commercial success he must approve of slavery. Also the slaves are much better off than the Negroes back in Africa, our slaves are guaranteed food, shelter, clothing, and care in their old age.
The south also said they entered the union freely and had every right to leave when they wanted.

Notice this hat above it is a Yankee artillery hat, and here Dr, Schweitzer was giving the Northern view, that the Union was meant to be perpetual and that god has done nothing to perpetuate slavery, but slaves in the bible were whites, so if slavery is in the bible it follows that there should also be white slaves owned by blacks. So the south fought believing god sanctioned slavery and the north fought believing god wanted a perpetual union.

This is after the break and while it is a bad picture of Dr. Schweitzer it is a good one of former EWGS President Ruby McNeil. In the Walking with Ancestors pictures I took all of those I took of Ruby were of her back

This uniform is a Confederate cavalryman, the yellow band on the hat signifies cavalry, he was a corporal two bars v shaped on the sleeve of the top. He explained companies of 100 men, regiments of ten companies and brigades.
He also talked about sources for researching your Civil War ancestor, and the fact that while the south lost the war they have won the records war, they have many more records microfilmed that the north.

Next was lunch, and a wonderful pot luck lunch, my sister and I brought a cherry-rhubarb pie and I guess it was well received as it disappeared quickly.

After lunch Dr. Schweitzer appeared as a Yankee Artilleryman, a sergeant. Three red stripes in a v on the sleeve signify an artillery sergeant. He then went on to tell about where to find information on your Yankee ancestor.

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