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MUSICAL BACKGROUND

"Seneca Square Dance" by Ry Cooder, from the film "The Long Riders"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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CONFEDERATE HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION OF BELGIUM

Due to the renovation works at the Communal Museum, the CHAB Club House has moved into temporary premises at Wolubilis, Woluwe-Saint-Lambert. Our monthly meetings will thus be held there until further notice. New Address: 1 place du Temps Libre - Local A300 - 3rd floor (right when leaving the elevator). The building is located along the Cours Paul-Henri Spaak, just opposite the Woluwe Shopping Center. The entrance is on the ground floor, left of the bookstore/restaurant Cook & Book. See access map

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NEXT MEETING    
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Saturday February 10, 2018, at 3 PM

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HARPERS FERRY AT THE HEART OF THE CIVIL WAR

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At our temporary Club House, lecture by Maurice Jaquemyns: “Harpers Ferry at the heart of the Civil War”. Harpers Ferry, a small town at the confluence of the Potomac and Shenandoah Rivers in northern Virginia, entered in the history of the United States as a result of two events. On October 10, 1859, a year before the American Civil War, John Brown, a ruthless abolitionist, freed 12 slaves and took their owner hostage. A fierce repression ended the adventure. If the inhabitants of the city were relieved, they could not envisage that this episode which crystallized the strong tensions between the North and the South, announced as a harbinger the bloody conflict to come. On September 15, 1862, General White signed the surrender of the 12,419 men in the city, who were caught in the subtle maneuvers of Thomas Jonathan Stonewall Jackson. One had to wait until the Second World War and the fall of Bataan on April 9, 1942, to see the capitulation of a large American garrison. Harpers Ferry is at the heart of the American Civil War: symbolically, John Brown's expedition brought together the opposing forces tearing the United States apart, which would unleash with a rare violence from 1861 to 1865; and militarily, the surrender of General White branded the US Army. Henceforth, following the humiliation of Harpers Ferry, the military doctrine came down to a simple concept: every enemy army must unconditionally capitulate in the field.

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PREVIOUS CHAB NEWS (Issued March 27, 2017)
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The return of the Tuscarora, by Donald E. Collins

Debacle in Tennessee, the Franklin and Nashville campaign, by Jean-Claude Janssens

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CURRENT CHAB NEWS (Issued September 21, 2017)
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The last days of the Alabama, by Charles Priestley

William Yancey and the Fishmongers, by Charles Priestley

Alcide Bouanchaud, Pointe Coupee Artillery, Louisiana, by Brian Costello

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NEXT CHAB NEWS (Foreseen end March 2018)
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Charles Augustus Hobart, blockade runner and Turkish admiral, by Charles Priestley

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PAYMENT OF SUBSCRIPTIONS BY PAYPAL

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It is recommended that our American and international members pay their yearly CHAB subscription by PayPal. Please make all payments to: chab.belgium@yahoo.com

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LATEST PAINTINGS FROM JOHN PAUL STRAIN

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WINTER SHADOWS OF 1862

TO THE LOST FORD

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The year of 1862 had been one of glorious victories with General Robert E. Lee and General Thomas J. Jackson commanding the armies of Northern Virginia. Thirteen battles, great and small had been fought and won during the significant year. From Mc Dowell, Port Republic, Cross Keys, Mechanicsville, Gaine's Mill, Savage Station, Frayser's Farm, Cedar Mountain, Second Manassas, Boonsboro, Harpers Ferry, Sharpsburg, to the great victory at Fredericksburg, it seemed nothing could stop the Southern Armies fighting for their independence. The morale of the Army of Northern Virginia was high with expectations that the leaders of the North would in time negotiate for peace. Now the cold winds of winter had arrived and Lee and Jackson had much work to do. Their victories had been costly with the loss of many men and great leaders. Just in the Seven Days' Battle, Lee had lost fifteen brigadier generals. The task now at winter quarters was to fortify the entire front of the Rappahannock, reorganize their command, and replace those that had been lost. In a letter to his wife on Christmas Day, General Lee wrote, "My heart is filled with gratitude to Almighty God for His unspeakable mercies with which he has blessed us this day, … and particularly for those he has vouchsafed us during the past year. What should have become of us without His crowning help and protection? … I pray that, on this day when only peace and good-will are preached to mankind, better thoughts may fill the hearts of our enemies and turn them to peace …"

In the spring of 1863 Colonel Abel D. Streight of Indiana submitted a plan to General Rosecrans to transport 2000 soldiers by river boat from Nashville, to Eastport, Mississippi, and on from there to destroy the railroads in the interior of Alabama and Georgia. General Bragg, receiving news of the invading force, ordered General Nathan Bedford Forrest to stop the enemy's advance. Bragg had unleashed the most dangerous quick-striking force of the Confederate Army. On April 30th, General Forrest attacked the rear of the Federal column, completely surprising the startled soldiers in blue. Streight's men engaged a number of Forrest's regiments on horseback. Many horses and men were killed in the charge. Before Forrest could regroup his men and form them into a dismounted line of battle, Col. Streight's forces had remounted their mules and were on the run. So began a running gun battle that would go on for 4 days, 4 nights and cover 199 miles. After two days and nights of fighting and fleeing, Col. Streight Crossed Black Creek Bridge heading for the safety of Rome. They burned the bridge and, believing Black Creek to be now impassible, Col. Streight eased his pace of retreat. His soldiers were worn down from fear, lack of sleep, and constant fighting, but at last they could feel safe. As General Forrest led his troopers in pursuit, they stopped at the home of Emma Sansom, a 16year-old southern girl whose brother had left home in 1861 to join the 19th Alabama Infantry. Emma told Forrest that the Yankees had burned the bridge down, but if a soldier could saddle her horse, she could show General Forrest a lost ford where his men could cross the creek. Emma would later write that General Forrest said, "There is not time to saddle a horse; get up here behind me." As they started off Emma's mother came running up, out of breath, wishing to know what was happening. Forrest said, "She is going to show me a ford where I can get my men over in time to catch those Yankees before they get to Rome. Don't be uneasy; I will bring her back safe." Emma led Forrest along a branch of the creek that emptied just above the lost ford and pointed out the crossing. He returned the young girl home, and asked for a lock of her hair, before riding back to the lost ford. To Col. Streight's amazement and despair Forrest was back on his trail. Both forces again made an all-night march. At about 9:00 AM on May 3rd, Streight reached the town of Lawrence. Streight deployed his men in defensive positions as Forrest attacked with his much smaller force. As the fighting subsided Forrest sent a flag of truce to the Federal commander, while at the same time, making his force appear larger than it was. Forrest and Streight met face to face. Forrest demanded the surrender of the Federals. When Streight asked Forrest how many men he had, Forrest bluffed saying he had a fresh column of troops arriving and enough men at hand to finish the job. Col. Streight and his command surrendered, and stacked their arms in a clearing as Forrest and his smaller force took them prisoner. The story would be told over many a campfire of how the beautiful southern girl would help the “Wizard of the Saddle” ride down, defeat, and capture the northern invaders.

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For information or online orders:

www.johnpaulstrain.com

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