Quoting President Woodrow Wilson commenting on the Civil War

In our last meeting, we had a lively debate on the question of which side each member would root for if the Civil War were fought today.

Allow me to express my opinion by quoting Woodrow Wilson. He is the first southerner elected as President of the United States after the Civil War. He was born in 1856, Virginia and grew up in Virginia. His father served as a chaplain in the Confederate army. The family owned slaves and they were pro-confederate. At age 14, his family moved to Augusta, Georgia. During recontruction, the family moved to Columbia, South Carolina 1870-1874. He attended Davidson College, Princeton, U. of Virginia School of Law and John Hopkins U. He got a Ph.D. in history and political science. He served as the President of Princeton University and Governor of New Jersey.
Let us hear the voice of this former history professor:

"For the whole country it was to be the bitterest of all ordeals----an agony of struggle and a decision by blood; but for one party it was to be a war of hope. Should the South win, she must also lose---- must lose her place in the great Union which she had loved and fostered, and must in gaining independence destroy a nation. Should the North win, she would confirm a great hope and expectation, establish the Union, unify it in institutions, free it from interior contradictions of life and principle, set it in the way of consistent growth and unembarrassed greatness. The South fought for a principle, as the North did: it was this that was to give the war dignity and supply the tragedy with a double motive. But the principle for which the South fought meant standstill in the midst of change; it was conservative, not creative; it was against drift and destiny; it protected an impossible institution and a belated order of society; it withstood a creative and imperial idea, the idea of a united people and a single law of freedom. Overwhelming material superiority, it turned out, was with the North; but she had also another and greater advantage: she was to fight for the Union and for the abiding peace, concord, and strength of a great nation."

 
Webmaster, Gordon Kwok
gordoncwrt@gmail.com

October 10, 1996
 
First posted on March 2, 2001
 
Uploaded on the current server: March 18, 2009 
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