“War is hell.”

by chuckofish

Today is the birthday of William Tecumseh Sherman (known as “Cump” to his friends and “Uncle Billy” to his men)–famous American general and Episcopalian.

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He was a great friend to our cousin U.S. Grant and had his back in war and in peace. Like Grant, he had a reputation for “hard” warfare, but also, like Grant, was generous in victory.

“You might as well appeal against the thunder-storm as against these terrible hardships of war. They are inevitable, and the only way the people of Atlanta can hope once more to live in peace and quiet at home, is to stop the war, which can only be done by admitting that it began in error and is perpetuated in pride.”

He had no use for politicians or newspapermen.

“The American press is a shame and a reproach to a civilized people. When a man is too lazy to work and too cowardly to steal, he becomes an editor and manufactures public opinion.”

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Sherman being led by an angel at Grand Army Plaza, NYC, Saint-Gauden’s last major work

I have seen this statue in New York and it is pretty impressive.  INSCRIPTION: TO GENERAL / WILLIAM TECUMSEH SHERMAN / BORN FEB. 8, 1820 / DIED FEB. 14, 1891 / ERECTED BY CITIZENS OF NEW YORK / UNDER THE AUSPICES OF THE / CHAMBER OF COMMERCE / OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK /

GENERAL WILLIAM TECUMSEH SHERMAN / AUGUSTUS SAINT-GAUDENS, SCULPTOR / CHARLES FOLLEN MCKIM, ARCHITECT / 1903 /

He wasn’t perfect; who is? But I would want to be on his team come the apocalypse. I will toast him twice tonight.

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(The quotes are from his memoir, Memoirs of General W.T. Sherman, which is worth reading. Also worth reading is The March: A Novel by E.L. Doctorow.)