The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 48, July 1944 - April, 1945 Page: 132
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
and third lectures are extractions of the author's two books:
The Common Soldier of the Confederacy and Southern Negroes,
1861-1865. The study gives a very realistic picture of the Con-
federate private: occupation, age, culture and education, his
reaction to army routine, attitude toward officers, his food,
clothing, recreation, the pillaging of the populace both North
and South, desertion, drinking, gambling, sex immorality, and
religion. The record of the great majority of Confederate
privates on countless battlefields is good, but in these same battles
were cowards and shirkers, and in some battles, as at Mis-
sionary Ridge, Winchester, and Cedar Creek, entire regiments
and brigades broke and fled before the onslaught of the enemy.
In general the private's morale was high until after the reverses
at Gettysburg and Vicksburg, but the activities of speculators
and hoarders, and the acute distress of his family contributed
more to the continued lowering of his morale than the military
reverses of the late months of 1864. The failure of the Con-
federate government to take effective action against hoarding
and speculation and to exempt from conscription non-slaveholding
men whose labor was indispensable for the support of wives
and small children, were, in the opinion of Professor Wiley,
two of the greatest mistakes of the Confederate government.
Professor Wiley pays tribute to the women folk of the com-
mon soldier when he says: "Undoubtedly the greater burden of
war was borne not by the ragged followers of Lee and Johnston,
but by the poor wives and mothers at home who strove valiantly
to provide a livelihood for their dependents. It is remarkable
that they bore up under their trials as well as they did. And
those humble women who did remain steadfast in labor and
loyalty to the end - and their number was considerable- were
indeed the greatest heroes of the Lost Cause."
The even tenor of life among negro slaves was little disturbed
in the areas of the South not invaded by Federal armies, but
in the invaded sections the tendency was for the blacks to
flock to the Union camps, with the exception of some faithful
house servants. Even trusted domestics sometimes abandoned
their masters, and in some instances they turned keys over
to Yankee plunderers.
ROBERT P. FELGAR
Jacksonville State Teachers College
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 48, July 1944 - April, 1945, periodical, 1945; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth146055/m1/136/: accessed May 27, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.