February 17, 1865: Burning of Columbia, South Carolina

 

Controversy has raged since the burning of Columbia after Sherman’s army occupied it on February 17, 1865.  Although Sherman did not order the burning, I think the weight of evidence is that Union troops were responsible.  Blaming South Carolina for starting the War, Union troops were eager to visit upon the capitol of the Palmetto State the destruction that they believed was a just punishment.  Union diary accounts and letters leave little doubt as to Union responsibility.  Nonetheless, Sherman always denied that his troops were responsible.  Here is his account of the  fire: (more…)

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Published in: on February 17, 2021 at 5:30 am  Comments Off on February 17, 1865: Burning of Columbia, South Carolina  
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Columbia, the Gem of the Ocean

Something for the weekend.  Written in 1843, by Thomas a Becket, Columbia, the Gem of the Ocean was probably the most popular patriotic ballad of the Nineteenth Century.

O Columbia! the gem of the ocean,
The home of the brave and the free,
The shrine of each patriot’s devotion,
A world offers homage to thee;
Thy mandates make heroes assemble,
When Liberty’s form stands in view;
Thy banners make tyranny tremble,
When borne by the red, white, and blue,
When borne by the red, white, and blue,
When borne by the red, white, and blue,
Thy banners make tyranny tremble,
When borne by the red, white and blue.

 
When war wing’d its wide desolation,
And threaten’d the land to deform,
The ark then of freedom’s foundation,
Columbia rode safe thro’ the storm;
With her garlands of vict’ry around her,
When so proudly she bore her brave crew;
With her flag proudly floating before her,
The boast of the red, white and blue,
The boast of the red, white and blue,
The boast of the red, white, and blue,
With her flag proudly floating before her,
The boast of the red, white and blue.
 
 
 

 

The star spangled banner bring hither,
O’er Columbia’s true sons let it wave;
May the wreaths they have won never wither,
Nor its stars cease to shine on the brave.
May thy service united ne’er sever,
But hold to the colors so true;
The army and navy forever,
Three cheers for the red, white, and blue!
Three cheers for the red, white, and blue!
The army and navy forever,
Three cheers for the red, white, and blue

Published in: on January 23, 2010 at 6:58 am  Comments Off on Columbia, the Gem of the Ocean  
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