CHANGE IN DATE: MAY 20
CHANGE IN MEETING LOCATION:
TERRY BRANCH LIBRARY
2015 NAPA VALLEY DRIVE
(This meeting only)
The Great Beefsteak Raid
by Cal Collier
WE HAVE CHANGED OUR meeting date/place (see above) to accommodate our
perennial May speaker, Founding Member Cal Collier.
Altho’ a combination of health problems caused Cal and Melba to forego their
trip home last year, we can resume the tradition of their visits this year.
Cal Collier served in the U.S. Air Force, spending some of his time at LRAFB.
A native of Virginia, he grew up on the Civil War, and, while he was in
Arkansas, became interested in the activities of Arkansas’ Confederate soldiers.
This resulted in his writing of three books: They’ll Do To Tie To, a history of
the Third Arkansas Infantry which served in the Army of Northern Virginia; First
In, Last Out, a history of the Capitol Guards (First Arkansas Infantry), which
served in the Army of Tennessee; and The War Child’s Children, a history of the
Third Arkansas Cavalry, which served under Forrest and Gen. Joe Wheeler (called
the ?war child because of his slight stature).
Cal was a member of the Arkansas Civil War Centennial Commission in the early
sixties, and is a Founding Member of our Round Table.
He and Melba moved to Baltimore several years ago, to be near his children in
the Washington, D.C., area, and his last surviving sibling. He is an active
member of the Baltimore CWRT and has made several talks to that group. He has
also spoken to the National Congress of Civil War Round Tables and the
Confederate Historical Institute on several occasions.
In 2000, he was the recipient of our group’s Patrick Cleburne Award, given
for contributions to Arkansas Civil War history, joining Ed Bearss, Jerry
Russell, Don Hamilton, and Bill O’Donnell, who were the previous recipients.
Since that time, former Sen. Dale Bumpers has also become a recipient.
Each May, Cal and Melba return to Little Rock for his Air Force squadron
re-union, and we take advantage of those visits to add an outstanding program to
His program this time will be about The Great Beefsteak Raid, an 1864
Virginia event involving Wade Hampton and his Rebel cavalrymen and a herd of
Yankee cattle, gathered to feed Grant’s Army. (You may have seen the movie based
on this action, starring William Holden and Richard Widmark.)
Federal General August Kautz (who was later the president of the Lincoln
Assassination conspirators’ court martial) was in charge of the Federal
commissary during the siege of Petersburg. Among his resources was this large
herd of cattle.
The Confederates learned about the tempting target, and a daring raid behind
enemy lines allowed Gen. Hampton and his hard-riding cavalrymen to stampede the
herd out of Union hands and into the Confederate lines. The Rebels ate beef for
the next several weeks.
You won’t want to miss Cal’s dynamic presentation (Cal’s presentations are
always dynamic) on this almost-forgotten Civil War action.
Remember, we will be meeting Tuesday, May 20 (NOT the fourth Tuesday),
at the Terry Branch Library, 2015 Napa Valley Drive.
Rodney Parham, going north from Markham, reaches an intersection with Green
Mountain Drive (past the commercial strip where Franke’s is--Market Place), and
takes a hard right (Green Mountain is to the left, and the continuation of
Rodney Parham is on the right). Straight ahead puts you on Hinson Road.
Go two blocks and you’ll come to Napa Valley; Terry Branch will be on your
immediate left as you turn on Napa Valley. It’s at the corner of Hinson
Road and Napa Valley.
The time is the same--7 p.m. And the fellowship is the same--outstanding.
See you there.
STEPHEN MCATEER, director and curator for the MacArthur Arkansas Military
History Museum, will also be our guest Tuesday night, to give a brief report on
the status and progress of this wonderful, relatively new museum on the military
history of Arkansas (including the Civil War).
THANKS TO Supt. John Scott for his presentation last month on Pea Ridge Today
and what’s going on up there. He is always an enjoyable guest.
PROGRAMS TO COME:
June 24, 2003--Randy Philhours, Paragould, The Marmaduke-Walker Duel.
July 22, 2003--Beau Cantrell, Broken Arrow OK,
August 26, 2003--Dr. Brian Steel Wills, UVA- Wise, Forrest in the Summer of
September 23, 2003--Dr. Dan Sutherland, The University of Arkansas, Guerilla
October 28, 2003--Landon Smith, Jackson, Miss, Prai-rie d'Ane.
November 25, 2003--Rob McGregor, Little Rock, Jefferson Davis, Before &
After the Civil War.
WE REPORT WITH REGRET the passing of William W. O’Donnell, one of our
Founding Members, on May 4. He was a faithful member for nearly 40 years (we
started in March 1964), gave many talks to the group, received the Patrick
Cleburne Award for his contribution to Arkansas Civil War history, and authored,
in 1986, Civil War Quadrennium: Little Rock During The Civil War, an official
publication of the Arkansas Sesquicentennial.
Several years ago, we authorized the expenditure of $100 for a commemorative
brick in the MacArthur Museum walk to honor our late president, Robert Grubbs,
who died unexpectedly during a meeting of the CWRT of North Pulaski County
(which he also served as president).
I would suggest that we honor Bill O’Donnell in the same manner.
THE REBEL ROUSER,
an SCV newsletter from Dallas, shared commentary on this book:
Myths & Realities of American Slavery, The True History of Slavery in
America, by John C. Perry; White Mane Publishing Company, Inc., 63 West Burd
St., Shippensburg, PA 17257; $39.95; 304 pages.
Many of the racial problems of the US have arisen because of
misunderstandings regarding slavery and its history. Now John Perry has
cast a bright light on the darkness of popular misconceptions. Drawing on many
sources he has provided an unbiased discussion that is very readable as well as
informative. This is no defense of slavery but it does point out that
slavery was certainly not a Southern development. He goes far back in time
to discuss slavery through the ages and around the world. One interesting
point made in passing is that slavery can be considered a step in the
development of civilization; prior to the advent of slavery, enemies captured in
battle were killed. The trade in African slaves was ages old before it
expanded to the Americas, with Africans enslaving and selling other Africans
throughout Africa and Asia.
African slavery in America was a late step in the history of slavery.
As a matter of fact North America received only a fraction of the Africans sold
into slavery. The first slaves imported to America were actually
indentured servants whose period of servitude were for stated lengths. One
of the first twenty such servants brought into Virginia was a black man who
later was responsible for servants for life when he won the right in court to
own another man. Although slavery was a fact throughout the American
colonies, it became more prevalent throughout the South due to reasons of
climate and economy.
However, the common concept of throngs of slaves laboring on vast plantations
was never a true picture. Over 75% of Southern households owned no slaves.
Only a very small fraction of people actually owned slaves and those who did
usually owned one or two. The day-to-day world of the slave is described
in much detail. In contrast to the storied mistreatment of slaves, the
average slave in the South was usually better off in health, home, and general
living conditions than the average Northern factory worker. When freedom
for Southern slaves came, it was a by-product of war rather than through
financial reimbursement of their owners, the method used elsewhere in the world.
That warfare left a residual of antipathy that remains today. The author
has performed a great service by analyzing and presenting this information.
We can only hope that it becomes widely read and understood.
AND FROM THE SAME NEWSLETTER:
NOT A MATTER OF PRINCIPLES
Northern states were in the midst of a depression before the war broke out.
The United States Treasury was bankrupt.
Northern Congressional representa-tives wanted high protective tariffs.
The vast bulk of the Federal income came from those tariffs and was paid by the
South, which depended heavily on imports. Therefore the South always
fought the North’s pet desires for such unjust protective tariffs.
However, with the departure of the Southern states, this obstacle was removed
and one of the first acts of the Republican-dominated 37th Congress was the
immediate passage of the Morrill Tariff.
At 47% this tariff went into effect in early March of 1861. At the
same time, the Confederate Congress instituted a low 10% tariff, true to the
South’s historic aversion to protective tariffs. The natural result of the
difference between these tariffs would be to divert trade from New York and
Boston to the Southern ports. If the secession of the South was allowed to
stand, the tariff in the North would have to be lowered to match that of the
South or the Northern states would suffer financial ruin. Lincoln had
already vowed in his Inaugural Address to enforce the Morril Tariff at
Charleston and other Southern ports. As representatives of the Virginia
Convention, Mr. John Baldwin and Mr. A.H.H. Stuart went to Washington and met
with Abraham Lincoln. They urged him to delay action that opened the war.
In reply, Lincoln asked, ?What is to become of my revenue in New York if there
is a 10% tariff at Charleston?
When war did occur, overseas observers easily discerned the principal reason.
As Karl Marx and Friedrick Engels stated in their book The Civil War in the
United States (1861; reprint, New York, 1961) ?The war between the North and the
South is tariff war. The war is further, not for any principle, does not
touch the question of slavery, and in fact turns on the Northern lust for
CIVIL WAR BULLETS
*For every three horses required by the cavalry, artillery, or supply
columns, an additional two horses were required to transport fodder.
* There were 37 different nationalities in the ranks of one Louisiana
* Soldiers on both sides soon learned that the barrel of a musket could hold
nearly a pint of whiskey.
* During the siege of Vicksburg in 1863, there were 39 Missouri regiments: 22
in blue, 17 in gray.
* Reflecting the heavy losses throughout the Confederate Army of Tennessee,
at the end of 1864, the 3rd and 18th Tennessee regiments had a total strength of
* Although The Confederate States of America appeared on currency, laws, and
military regulations, that term was never officially adopted by the Southern
* Confederate General Nathan B. Forrest had 29 horses shot out from under him
* Robert E. Lee’s hair was black at the beginning of the War; completely
white at the end of the War.
See You Tuesday Night at Terry Branch Library for Cal Collier and The
Great Beefsteak Raid.
We Who Study Must Also Strive To Save!
GOD BLESS AMERICA!