View single post by TheStratton4
 Posted: Thu Nov 3rd, 2005 01:26 am
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Joined: Wed Nov 2nd, 2005
Location: Pennington, New Jersey USA
Posts: 2

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  I read Bruce Catton's works twenty-five years ago....The Coming Fury, Never Call Retreat, Terrible Swift Sword, This Hallowed Ground...and I was never the same again.  The desire to know more and more and to see, touch, experience, and connect with the past in all ways possible has become a way of life for me that has endured for a quarter of a century.  Probably most of the members of this forum can cite a similar experience. 

It takes a great amount of motivation to delve into the details and understand - truly and deeply -what it was all about.  Sometimes, I wonder if I truly and deeply 'get it', and I have spent the better part of three decades trying.  The more you know the more you know you don't know- that sort of thing.  We can never understand the past the way the people who lived it understood it because we know how it turned out.  We know the end and the beginning at the same time but we cannot know the beginning without the end the way they did. 

Most people are not 'touched by fire' to quote Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr..   They don't feel the pull of the past or see its relevance.  They are happy with the watered down version.  

 I think there is alot of myth out there and myth is a very human and very ancient way for people to deal with the past.  The past has to suit the present.  People will mold it to be what they need it to be.  This happened with the Civil War generation itself - and they were there -and  it happens today and will always.




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