Harold Levi writes:
The article on the Stonewall Jackson medal contains a number of errors. In the process of my research I copied all four of the original September, October, November and December 1894 advertisements from original Confederate Veteran magazines. The copies were made at Elm Springs, Columbia, Tennessee, the World Headquarters for the Sons of Confederate Veterans, of which I am a member. I have attached the November 1894 advertisement.
The article mentions that the medals were found when a building was being razed. However, many of the medals show fire damage. It seems to be unknown if the building was razed because of a fire or the building was razed with fire.
This episode illustrates what we modern-day Confederates do. We try to make sure the story is accurate even if it makes the Confederates look bad. Northerners often complain that we Southerners keep fighting the War. All we want is that the story be told accurately - - as is possible.
Harold attached a copy of an October 1987 TAMS article about the medal written by Robert D. Marcus. Peter Bertram has also researched this medal and supplied a copy of one of the 1894 advertisements, which appears below.
Peter Bertram writes:
The article reprinted in the last E-Sylum unfortunately perpetuates several popular misconceptions concerning the Stonewall Jackson medal. For example:
- "A privately commissioned medal ......." : Funds for the medal were raised in Richmond by public subscription in late 1863, invested in cotton and sent to Europe.
- ......"heroic bust of Jackson "......: The likeness of Jackson was terrible - it looked more like Lincoln (Jackson's widow called it “miserable”) and selling them was a tough go because of it.
- ...."is a Latin inscription meaning "Claimed by God". : "Deo Vindice" has traditionally been interpreted as "God Our Vindicator" and close similar sentiments.
- "Lamar commissioned Armand Caque to design and have the Stonewall medal struck". See above - plus, as a staunch Confederate, Lamar would never have accepted the errors in the battle listings on the reverse, such as referring to the Battle of First Manassas as BULL RUN or to Sharpsburg as ANTIETAM. - and some five or six other errors.
- "Before seeing the medal, of which perhaps 500 were struck, Charles Lamar was killed in action…… ". Horse feathers! The first time Lamar was even aware of the medals was when he saw them at an exhibition in Paris in 1863. As to his death, he was killed April 16, 1865 near Columbus, Georgia while serving as Aide-de-Camp to General Howell Cobb.
- Not mentioned is that there were two shipments of the medals. One ended up in Richmond just before the city fell and are quite possibly the medals that showed up in the early post-war numismatic trade. The other, larger, shipment was the one that ended up in Savannah.
Peter included a copy of the write up of this medal as it will appear in his in-progress book on Confederate medals. Thanks! It's too lengthy to republish here, but I will show this ad for the medals Peter found in the September 1894 issue of Confederate Veteran Magazine.
We'll eagerly await further information on the progress of Peter's book.
It's great to have researchers doing the legwork to flesh out the stories and correct earlier misinformation.
To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
THE 1864 STONEWALL JACKSON MEDAL
Wayne Homren, Editor
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