I don’t pretend to know everything about the Civil War. It’s not an area of history I’ve fully dived into quite yet, but I know bits here and there from reading history books while I was homeschooled and what I’ve learned from reading online and reading stuff in paranormal books.
But recently, I’ve read a few books by Ann Rinaldi. She writes historical fiction. One I read a week or two ago called Wolf by the Ears. It’s set in the 1800s and is about a girl who is a slave, but believed to one of Thomas Jefferson’s children. That one had more to do with slavery and finding out more about one’s self. The most recent I’ve read by Ann Rinaldi is In My Father’s House. I finished it yesterday. It is also set in the 1800s, around the time of the Civil War. The main character is a southern girl named Oscie and the war is seen through her eyes as she grows up and changes. Both were good books and both gave me lots to think about.
But In My Father’s House has me thinking about the Civil War, the North and the South. What it was like back in those times. And not to mention, but this year is the 150th anniversary of the battle of Gettysburg. Today is also July 1st, which was the start of the battle and it went until July 3rd.
The book and the 150th anniversary of the battle of Gettysburg have thinking about these things, but my dad also. And that’s because recently I was reminded of something he said when I was a kid.
I was out with my parents one night and someone was talking to my dad about Gettysburg and our paranormal group ghost hunting there. And this, of course, gets him talking about the history of Gettysburg and the Civil War, which he has studied lots about. Whenever he gets to talking about Gettysburg and the Civil War at one point he always says “You know, the South should have won.” and explains how they could have won.
Hearing that the other day brought back a memory, something I haven’t thought of in a very long time. But I can see it so clearly in my head.
When I was a kid, I was with my parents in Gettysburg. I had to be younger than ten so this was before the ghost hunting, our paranormal group and regular trips to Gettysburg. It was during the summer and we were in one of the shops out there that sold authentic looking Civil War clothing. I think my dad was talking about the Civil War and Gettysburg while we were in the store. I was looking at the toy swords and I’m not sure what prompted me to ask, but I asked my dad, “What side do you think should have won?” and for a few seconds he paused. He could have been thinking over his answer, but I’m sure it was because he was wondering how my mother or I would react to his answer. But finally he replied and said, “Well, I wish the South would have won.”
I don’t remember his explanation why he wishes the South would have won, but I do remember his answer. And I just know my dad seems to have an obsession with the fact the South should have won.
And I’ve just been thinking, what if the South would have won? How would things be different now? Would things be different, or have ended up the same? These are questions that I will never know the answer to.
Do you think the South should have won? If they did, how do you think things would be now, better or worse?