A friend of mine gave my Civil War novel to an acquaintance to read. The book is about a Southern young woman who falls in love with a Union officer before the war starts. Her heart and devotion are torn between him and her loyalties to the South, especially when her brother marches off to fight for the Confederacy. The comment from her very Southern acquaintance was, "Ah liked the book, but Ah just don't think a Southun girl would fall in lo-uv with a Union officuh."
Really! This remark from a Southern lady, even in 2013, displays what a gulf there was between the Northern and Southern perceptions of the war--even to what the two sides called the War. Burke Davis, in his book, The Civil War, Strange & Fascinating Facts, lists some of the names that mostly the South adopted, grasping in their defeat to express their ardor and, indeed defiance. Here are a few of them:
The War for Constitutional Liberty
The War for Southern Independence
The Second American Revolution
The War for States' Rights
Mr. Lincoln's War
The Southern Rebellion
The War for Southern Rights
The War of the Southern Planters
The War of the Rebellion
The Second War for Independence
The War to Suppress Yankee Arrogance
The Brothers' War
The War of Secession
The Great Rebellion
The War for Nationality
The War for Southern Nationality
The War Against Slavery
The Civil War Between the States
The War Against Northern Aggression
The Yankee Invasion
The War for Separation
The War for Abolition
The War for the Union
The Confederate War
The War for Southern Freedom
The War of the North and South
And lastly, The Late Unpleasantness.
Whew! Some of those names for the Civil War I had heard. Most I had not. By whatever name one wishes to call that terrible conflict, it was devastating to our country--particularly to the South. We are all grateful, I am sure, that the Union prevailed. If they had not, we would probably be a divided country today. But for the purposes of this post, I think it is interesting how differently the two sides viewed the war, even to what they called it. And some of those disparities remain even to this present day.
Golden Keyes Parsons writes historical fiction, and is also a popular retreat/conference speaker. Her highly acclaimed Darkness to Light Series (Thomas Nelson Publishing) chronicled the journey of her French Huguenot ancestors in 17th century France. Her fourth novel, His Steadfast Love, is a Civil War novel set in Texas. Her latest releases are ebooks (WhiteFire Publishing) – a biblical fiction series entitled Hidden Faces, Portraits of Nameless Women in the Gospels. Golden lives in Waco, TX, with her husband, Blaine, where they enjoy their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren and are avid sports fan of their alma mater, Baylor University. You can contact her at www.goldenkeyesparsons.com.