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Anonymous asked in Arts & HumanitiesHistory · 1 decade ago

why do Southerners still hate Gen Sherman?

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  • 1 decade ago
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    Oh my God, where to start. Well first off, he not only wished for the total destruction of Southern property but extermination of Southern people (men, women, children, you know…Hitler) and as if that wasn’t enough he also wished for and acted on the destruction and extermination of native peoples.

    If you want to know Sherman’s attitude toward Southerners during the War between the States just look at a July 31, 1862 letter to his wife (from his Collected Works). He wrote that his purpose in the war was: "Extermination, not of soldiers alone, that is the least part of the trouble, but the [Southern] people." His charming and nurturing wife Ellen wrote back that her fondest wish was for a war "of extermination and that all [Southerners] would be driven like the Swine into the sea."

    Now, let’s get practical here. Nobody much cares about Southerners-or at least Southern white people. Most Hollywood Yanks have seen to it that most everybody hates us but what about the indigenous peoples? Sherman hated us both because we were both seen as being anti-progress so he was concerned about the whole population and not just soldiers. He was especially concerned with building railroads. Let’s look at what he thought of native peoples:

    On hearing of the loss of Captain Fetterman's entire detachment in 1866 near Fort Phil Kearney, General William Tecumseh Sherman wrote Commanding General Ulysses S. Grant: "We must act with vindictive earnestness against the Sioux, even to their extermination, men, women and children. Nothing else will reach the root of this case."

    On another occasion roughly a decade later he wrote: "I think our interest is to favor the undertaking of the Road, as it will help bring the Indian problem to a final solution." --General William Tecumseh Sherman, Commander of the U.S. Army West, 1876, talking about need for "extermination" of the Indians to make way for the transcontinental railroad.

    He occasionally used the word “Indian problem” and by 1890 much of Sherman’s "final solution" had been achieved: The Plains Indians were all either killed or placed on reservations "where they can be watched." In a December 18, 1890 letter to the New York Times Sherman expressed his deep disappointment over the fact that, were it not for "civilian interference," his army would have "gotten rid of them all" and killed every last Indian in the U.S.

    Now first off I want to say that yes, back then lots of historical figures were very “politically incorrect” at the time and I lose my patience with some who are overly obsessed with every comment every single person ever made (even Gandhi made derogatory comments about black people in South Africa) but I think there’s a big difference between some innocuous comment and what can only be described as a true evil nature. Lot of people said very bad things but not everybody acted upon them or sought them out in terms of dogma. Even people like Robert E. Lee and Abraham Lincoln said things we wouldn’t say today but there is a hell of a difference between Lee and Nathan Bedford Forrest and the same is true of Lincoln vs. Sherman. Sherman really believed that all Southerners and Indigenous peoples were better off dead in the same way Forrest probably did for black people. Both were called devils at the time by the opposing side and I think there’s a reason for it.

    I hope that answers your question but I have no clue why you suppose that Southerners hate him. Maybe fifty years ago, but today? I don't think most really think about it one way or another- unfortunately.

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  • 1 decade ago

    The hate is passed down from elders to the youth. A. Lincon is still hated in the southern older ant-Belem community. Sherman is easily the poster child for what is called "Northern Aggressor". The fact that he fought the war so bitterly and burned towns to the ground still resonates through the southern community.

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  • 1 decade ago

    Because Sherman relized that in order to defeat the Southern states and win the war quickly you had to stop the flow of supplies going to the troops. Unfortunately, he was not allowed to start the campaign until the war was several years old. It was unfortunate really that it was necessary that the civilian population was targetted as well.

    However, it was not uncommon for the confederates to ride into town and produce a grocery bill of supply demands to the town fathers. Give us what we need or we take it by force. All paid for with worthless confederate script though.

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  • 1 decade ago

    Because he waged warfare on unarmed civilians...women and children, to be specific.

    Sherman was America's first War Criminal and should have been treated as such. Had the South won the war, I'm sure he would have been hanged; but since the South lost, he's considered a hero.

    Let me ask you this: if the commander of US forces in Iraq ordered his unit to march across the nation and burn every building they come across, strip the land clean of any source of food or supplies, and destroy any and all livestock they come across, what would you think of him? War criminal, maybe?

    Hello, that's exactly what Sherman did, yet he's considered a hero.

    Just goes to prove the old adage that the history books are written by the victors.

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  • 5 years ago

    Southerners do not hate General Sherman. We just hate the hypocrisy sometimes to be expected in a history written by the victors including the apotheosis of a depraved genocidal maniac indicted by his own words:

    “We must act with vindictive earnestness against the Sioux, even to their extermination, men, women and children.”

    "The more Indians we can kill this year the fewer we will need to kill the next, because the more I see of the Indians the more convinced I become that they must either all be killed or be maintained as a species of pauper. Their attempts at civilization is ridiculous..."

    Sherman vowed to remain in the West "till the Indians are all killed or taken to a country where they can be watched."

    "During an assault," he instructed his troops, "the soldiers cannot pause to distinguish between male and female, or even discriminate as to age." He chillingly referred to this policy in an 1867 letter to Grant as "the final solution to the Indian problem," a phrase Hitler invoked some 70 years later.

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  • 1 decade ago

    Why do we still hate Saddam Hussien? Because both men did what was/is considered wrong. How would you like it if some guy led an army and burned half your country down to the ground?

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Because they are told to do so. What makes you think all Sountherners still hate General Sherman? Because you were told they all do.

    And that is what we call education, believing what everyone else believes and doing so at the same time, thus making us free thinkers.

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  • 1 decade ago

    Because hatred is a vile cancer that resides in peoples hearts and gets passed to their innocent children.

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  • John L
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago

    Because he killed and starved many Southerners.

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  • 1 decade ago

    He lost the war.

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