Politics, United States

Stonewall Jackson and his Legacy

Stonewall Jackson (wikipedia)

Many pieces of art and history are being torn down and what are you doing about it? People are getting together to take these monuments down. And these people do not understand the value and history behind the beautiful pieces of art that stand before them. Statues that once stood tall over towns, displaying history for all to see. A Confederate general that goes by the name, Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson, that has many statues and monuments representing him and his legacy around America today. Stonewall Jackson was a Confederate general that helped shape America what it is today, was a mentor for many Southerns to look up to, and now many are looking to tear down monuments which display his heroism.

Jackson was a highly qualified confederate general. His actual legal name was Thomas Jackson, his nickname being “Stonewall”. He had graduated from the West Point Academy and had been a very helpful factor of deciding the outcome of many battles that played out in the Civil War. But, even prior to the Civil War he had served in the Mexican-American War as well. He joined the Mexican-American as a 2nd lieutenant, but due to his bravery he left the war as a well known war hero. Thomas Jackson also happens to teach artillery tactics and what is known around the world as modern day physics. He had grown a liking to these topics which aided Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson in his war decisions and made him a better general as a whole. In the Civil War, Stonewall Jackson had decided to side with the Confederacy because his home state of Virginia had decided to secede from the Union. Thomas Jackson had decided to support his state and the Confederacy rather than the Union. In the first battle of Bull Run he earned the nickname “Stonewall”. When Jackson had his troops close the gap and stood them in the shape of a wall. The Union had seen the wall of troops and stated that they stood there looking like a rock hard stonewall. Thus giving him the nickname “Stonewall Jackson”. Thomas Jackson’s quick thinking on the battlefield had resulted the Confederates a victory in the first battle of Bull Run.

Thomas Jackson was hand chosen by Robert E. Lee, to become a general for the Civil War. Due to his braveness and outstanding tactics in the wars like the Mexican-American war. Lee saw much potential in the West Point Academy graduate. Starting in the August of 1862 till May of 1863, Jackson had gained respect and trust from Robert E. Lee. Thomas Jackson now had most of Lee’s army under his control, him being their general. Getting to this position was difficult for Jackson but his decisive maneuvers and quick thinking had allowed him to become such a powerful general. With all soldiers following his each and every command without any hesitations or questions. This duo of Lee and Jackson, also including many more successful generals, had won many battles and almost the Civil War.

The battle of Chancellorsville, that was fought from the 30th of April to May 6th of 1863. In this battle many strategical moves were played by the Confederates, such as Robert E. Lee making the decision to split his troops up and divide and conquer. But in the midst of this battle the great Stonewall Jackson, was hit by friendly fire. It was dark outside and Stonewall had made a brave decision to make a huge push at the Northern Soldiers. Confederate troops had mistaken Jackson and his troops, for Union soldiers. The Confederates fired at Jackson and his troops, unfortunately one bullet hitting and injuring Thomas Jackson. The bullet that had hit Jackson shattered the bone just below his left shoulder. The doctors had no other choice, but to amputate his arm but did not happen to be successful. Jackson had began to heal from the gunshot but passed away from pneumonia. He has passed away on May 10, 1863. Many Southerners believed that the cause of their loss in the Civil War, was due to the death of Thomas Jackson. They had stated that he was their leader and could guide them through anything. The southerners had faith that Stonewall Jackson and the other most important Confederate general of the Civil War, Robert E. Lee, would lead them to victory in the Civil War.

Fast forward about 150 years, these statues and monuments still stand today towering over cities and parks; but, protests and fights against these status have

Stonewall Jackson Statue in Charlottesville, Virgina (media.graytvinc.com)

arose. Creating conflict between the people in the United States. Many people think that these statutes represent slavery and all the horrible history, but, in all actuality they represent the generals and soldiers that fought for what they thought was right. The protesters and the Southerners of the Civil War era are much more alike than they ever thought. Both groups, protesters and the Confederacy, have stood up for what they believe in. Whether what they believe in, is right or wrong, it should still be recognized that they have the courage to stand up and say something.

Many examples stand being, but the most notable example of these statutes would be the one of Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson, riding his horse in Charlottesville. This same city of Charlottesville, Virginia is the same city that sparked backlash with the horrific incident. The incident being protesters standing in the streets and a civilian in car decides to run the protesters over. This incident left three people dead and thirty-four injured. The protesters being there for a Robert E. Lee statue.This simple instance shows how a simple protest can turn to violence once one person is angered. The Charlottesville city council had unanimously voted to remove the statue of Stonewall Jackson, from Justice Park, effective immediately. Even though the city council of Charlottesville, Virginia voted to remove them; there still has to be state approval for official removal. Until then these symbols of history remain underneath a black tarp until the final decision is made.

Many people believe that these statutes put a spotlight on our country’s past. They say that these statutes also signify racism and slavery, which is wrong. These statues and monuments that stand abroad in America signify much more than that. They show our rich history, which America is full of. These statues are placed there for reasons such as, showing and highlighting the soldiers that fought for their freedom and beliefs. Although their beliefs may not have been the best ones, it still shows that our country has come along way from what it once was.

Thomas Jackson was a well respected Confederate general, winning many battles and becoming a war hero for many to love. Stonewall was a mentor for many Southerners. Many Southerners believe that if Stonewall Jackson never died, the Confederates could have possibly won the war. Now in modern day America, many citizens are voting and protesting to tear down the monuments of these once great hereos. The hero’s including people like Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson two very successful leaders in war that really shaped America; to become what it is today. If you believe that tearing down these pieces of art and symbols of history, feel free to contact your local representative or congressman.

Article by Bronson Maringer and Wyatt Couch 

Jaeger, Max. “Charlottesville council votes to remove ‘Stonewall’ Jackson statue.” New York Post, New York Post, 6 Sept. 2017, nypost.com/2017/09/06/charlottesville-council-votes-

     to-remove-stonewall-jackson-statue/. Accessed 29 Sept. 2017.

History.com Staff. “Stonewall Jackson.” History.com, A&E Television Networks, 2009, www.history.com/topics/american-civil-war/stonewall-jackson. Accessed 29 Sept. 2017.

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