Nonfiction > James Ford Rhodes > History of the Civil War, 1861–1865 > Page 68
James Ford Rhodes (1848–1927).  History of the Civil War, 1861–1865  1917.
Page 68
to a portrait of a handsome young man, a near and dear relative, a Captain of the twentieth Massachusetts, who was shot dead at Ball’s Bluff, he asked, “How would you like yourself to read constantly that that lad died in a miserable cause, and, as an American officer, should be called a coward?” Oliver Wendell Holmes wrote to Dicey: “I have a stake in this contest, which makes me nervous and tremulous and impatient of contradiction. I have a noble boy, a captain in one of our regiments, which has been fearfully decimated by battle and disease and himself twice wounded within a hair’s breadth of his life.” 1  30
  Still another drift of sentiment must not be ignored. The sympathy of the British government and public with Italy during the war of 1859, and the progress made in that war towards Italian liberty, impressed upon the English mind the doctrine that a body of people who should seek to throw off an obnoxious dominion and form an orderly government of their own, deserved the best wishes of the civilized world. Why, it was asked in England, if we were right to sympathize with Italy against Austria, should we not likewise sympathize with the Southern Confederacy whose people were resisting the subjugation of the North? This argument swayed the judgment of the liberal-minded Grote, and colored other opinion which was really determined by considerations of rank or of commerce and manufactures. 2  31
  But there were English statesmen and writers of ability who understood that the fight of the North was against slavery; they urged her cause without ceasing, although many times their hearts failed them as they feared she had undertaken an impossible task. They had as their followers the workingmen whom hunger stared in the face but who
Note 1. III, 514, n. [back]
Note 2. IV, 76; Lecky, I, 488, 490. [back]


Shakespeare · Bible · Strunk · Anatomy · Nonfiction · Quotations · Reference · Fiction · Poetry
© 1993–2015 · [Top 150] · Subjects · Titles · Authors · World Lit.