Reader David Bryant commented on our entry on the American Civil War in Virginia:
Please tell me that no public funds are used to support this site or the VFH. This type of historical propaganda does such great harm by disseminating half-truths and pandering opinions. I realize that there are some Virginians who feel the need to dilute or misshape our history to make it more palatable to non-Virginians or who promote such blatant pseudo-history to make themselves appear more progressive. But what about school children who may access this site, thinking they have found an educational resource? I’ve taught in our schools and I know that there are so few accurate sources of Virginia history available to them. In a media environment that constantly bombards our children with the message that anything southern is demonic and southerners themselves inbred and moronic, do we really need another duplicitous source?
Mr. Bryant has previously taken exception with the Virginia Historical Society.
ELSEWHERE: Follow the same argument—over how we should understand and remember the war—in the text and comments section of this article in Charlottesville’s Daily Progress. After Ed Ayers spoke at a Virginia Festival of the Book event, a city council member suggested to him “that there are a lot of people who feel very strongly that these statues [of Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson] don’t belong in our downtown.” Chaos ensued—at least in the comments section.
IMAGE: Southern Chivalry—Argument versus Club, lithograph by John L. Magee (1856) depicting an attack, by U.S. Representative Preston Brooks of South Carolina, on U.S. Senator Charles Sumner of Massachusetts. The image is not meant to suggest that Mr. Bryant wishes us violence, only that, these many years later, tempers still flare.