J.D.R. Hawkins

One bullet can make a man a hero… or a casualty.

4th of July Reminiscences

Happy 4th of July! It was on this holiday in 1863 that two very important events played out: Gettysburg and Vicksburg. The battle of Gettysburg, after three days of heavy fighting, ended on July 3rd, and at Vicksburg, Mississippi, Union General Grant succeeded in taking the town after a month-long siege, thus securing the Mississippi River for Federal use. Confederate General John Pemberton surrendered Vicksburg on July 4th.

The South refused to acknowledge or celebrate July 4th after the Civil War ended, and for nearly a century afterward. There was no need to celebrate when Vicksburg’s women and children had literally been starved into submission, and their sons, brothers, fathers, and uncles were slaughtered off mercilessly. The South considered the War Between the States to be another war for independence, but they were unable to acheive their independence from the government-dictated North.

This Independence Day, we should honor all those who sacrificed their lives for the causes they believed in and fought for, regardless of whether we consider them to be politically correct today. Times were much different back then, just as they were when this country was forged. God Bless America!

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