Thursday, April 9, 2015

The 150th Anniversary of the End of the Civil War

One hundred and fifty years ago today, the bloodiest war in American history came to an end as General Robert E. Lee surrendered the Confederate cause to Union General Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox Court House in Virginia.

Having lived in Virginia for several years back in the early 1990’s, I was struck upon first seeing Appomattox Court House in how small and unassuming it was, particularly because this was the place where the culmination of our nation’s bloody atonement was concluded for our pernicious sin of slavery.

Many other nations at the time of our Civil War engaged in slavery, and indeed many still do today, but America purged its soul and finally made the first monumental step in keeping the promise of our Declaration of Independence that “all men are created equal”.  More than 700,000 people died in the cause of our Civil War accordingly.

Sadly, the sesquicentennial anniversary of this event that saved our nation and its soul will probably not even be mentioned in most media outlets today.  As Americans, most of us will ignorantly go about our daily lives and not stop to thank God and pray for those men who 150 years ago today ended our Civil War where they fought, bled, and died to save the union and make amends for a great evil.

3 comments:

Unknown said...

Great post T.Paine. This is a significant anniversary that should be reflected upon. Just a teeny nitpick. The surrender actually happened next door to the Courthouse at McLean House. The whole historical park is very beautiful and peaceful.

Dave Dubya said...

Yet the war flag of the slave states still flies over South Carolina.

How can anyone not see this as an insult to the Black population?

If the South is so proud of their heritage, why are they only focused on the failed rebellion of the slavemasters?

T. Paine said...

Dave, I have come to agree with you. I used to live in Virginia and North Carolina and I understand that there are good people that cling to the confederate flag as a symbol of their southern heritage with no animus whatsoever meant towards fellow Americans of color. That said, it shouldn't be only what they think of the flag anymore, but the other evil symbolism that hurts fellow Americans should also be taken into account as well. If a southerner wishes to fly that flag on his own property, then that is his right. But, I agree, it is time to take the confederate flag down from public and government property.