Historian Shelby Foote

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Tom A Hawk

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I was favorable impressed by Selby Foote's appearance in Ken Burns' Civil War documentary. I could listen to him talk for hours and was delighted by his authentic quotes from famous Civil War figures.

For your entertainment, I have discovered a series of interviews with Mr. Foote on Youtube.
 

GoodRabbitPilgrim

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I really like him, would love to get his books one day but they are pricey here.

Of his many quotes my favourite is (paraphrased) "the people who say the civil war had everything to do with slavery are as wrong as the people who say it had nothing to do with slavery". It's increasingly hard to find anyone with an unbiased view on things so I appreciated his.
 

Eutycus

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It is surprising how many "not-from-the-south" members on another forum object to Foote and say he is not a true historian because he doesn't use footnotes. It almost gives one the impression that there's a little jealousy in some of that criticism.
 

Darto

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About the time some Confederate statues were being removed, Foote's books became way more expensive all of a sudden. I found a nice set of the hardbacks for about $50 but it was a tough search.
 
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Any mention of Shelby Foote always reminds me of a story he told about a skirmish line forming up just prior to one of the big battles at Gettysburg (I think that's correct). He said the troops' activity jumped a rabbit that then ran down the line and one soldier called after it, "You better run, old hare. If I's an old hare, I'd run too!"

Even typing that was impossible to do without hearing Foote's unmistakable drawl relating the story.
 

RLI

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Any mention of Shelby Foote always reminds me of a story he told about a skirmish line forming up just prior to one of the big battles at Gettysburg (I think that's correct). He said the troops' activity jumped a rabbit that then ran down the line and one soldier called after it, "You better run, old hare. If I's an old hare, I'd run too!"

Even typing that was impossible to do without hearing Foote's unmistakable drawl relating the story.
It was before Pickets Charge. He had a wonderful way to tell a story.
 
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If Shelby had lived in the time of the Civil War, he would have made a fine Confederate General,
a true man of conviction and a Southern Christian Gentleman. His voice captures the hearts of both
Southerners and Northerners alike. I know that he would be appaulled at what a small band of
degenerate people have done to bash and have removed, the beloved statues of The Confederate Generals
that led the Southern Forces on to countless victories during that time of conflict.
The Civil War resulted in destroying pride in both accomplishment of duty, their respect and admiration of
Southern Ladies and respect for all members of their families. White families in this day and age should take notice
of those over the generations that have aged and been left behind to live their lives in solitude with out so much
as a weekly phone call, Birthday Card, Father and Mother's Cards, or even an occasional visit to lift their spirits.
Too many of our White elderly live and die suffering from family neglect, while the elderly of African American Families
thrive in love, peace and harmony knowing that their lives have been worth while and meant something to the next generations.
 
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There is a popular conception that those dragged into a fight always know what they are fighting for. That should be true now, with the proliferation of electronic media. It was not always true in the past.
Two of my uncles were torpedoed in separate incidents in the run up to WWII. They were Appalachian hill people out to see the world and were working as deck hands. They were washed up in Great Britain and served in their service before we entered the war. Hey! Food and work. We are in! They were both adept marksmen, hunters, outdoorsmen. British forces valued them highly.
 
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My personal heritage goes back to the 22nd Massachusetts at Gettysburg. As far as I've been able to find in historical documents,
my ancestor of the same name Paul D. Tremblay was under the command of Gen. Sickles, a ruthless and arrogant man. So many good men
died because because of his self righteous blunder as he extended the Federal Line at Little Round Top all the way down to the Peach Orchid.
Why, Union Soldiers chose not to shot him in the head because of his stupidity, is beyond belief. But, as history tells us he lost a leg, and calmly
smoked a cigar as the field medical attendants carried him away. My complaint will always be, why he is buried in Arlington National Cemetery
where the real heroes of the Civil War have been laid to rest.
 
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My only wish as an elderly man of 72 years now, is that someday, this great country will come to it's senses,
and declare a National Cemetery location for the Courageous Confederate Dead to lie in honor, peace and
remembrance of the sacrifices that they made for their cause as well. They were Americans too.
 
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In comment to the point above about historians no necessarily liking Foote, he didn't really consider himself to be a historian. He seemed to think himself more of a journalist, which was his education and profession. His writing has that quality. He writes in a style of a narrative historian, but his penchant for the human interest story really makes it read like a back country newspaper story describing yesterday's events, rather than "yester-year's" events.
He certainly was a gem. Moderate in his stance, reflective in his speech, and always curious.
 
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I've read his Time magazine series that I bought into quite a few years ago. I read it twice before I sold the 12 or 14 volumes. My ancestors were in Oregon during the war so I suppose that makes me a Yankee. If I'd have been alive then and known what I know now I would have at least been a Copperhead. I also believe that the worst event in the country's history was the assassination of President Lincoln. Those who know the history will understand what I mean. It's something that I'd better not explain here.
 
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