From History

Woodrow Wilson

The twenty-eighth President was the son of a Presbyterian Minister and was a Calvinist himself. He had a deep faith in God and His direction of the Elect, God’s children. His Christian world view of love, charity, and  justice impacted his life and Presidency. He was a Southern child during the end of the Civil War and experienced it’s devastation, but as a Christian he believed he had a destiny. He overcame dyslexia after struggling for years as a poor student, and was able to become an eloquent speaker and persuasive debater through the consistent help of his loving father.…

Margaret Sanger and Planned Parenthood

Well over 50 million babies have been killed through abortion in the United States since the Roe vs. Wade Supreme Court decision. Many of these abortions are now performed by Planned Parenthood, an organization formed by Margaret Sanger. Her early days saw her as the publisher of the liberal newspaper, “The Women Rebel”, which boasted the slogan, “No Gods!, No Masters!” The premier issue denounced marriage as a “degenerate institution,” capitalism as “indecent exploitation,” and sexual modesty as “obscene prudery.” In issues to follow, she published articles on sexual liberation, social revolution, contraception, and two articles that defended political assassinations.…

Sargent Alvin C. York

This simple man became an celebrated hero, awarded the Medal of Honor, for his action in WWI.  He was born in 1887, in the mountains of Tennessee’s Cumberland plateau.  He was poor and lived a rough and tough life until he was dramatically saved in a revival meeting.  He became a devout believer.  When he was drafted into the military he struggled with the concept of taking a human life, but he sought God’s will and concluded that the defense of the innocent may demand his life or that of the enemy. The movie “Sargent York” was produced in 1941…

Casting the First Stone

“So when they continued asking Him, He raised Himself up and said to them, ‘He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.’ ” John 8:7. Several years ago a commercial ran for a cruise line where the Father said to his family that for their vacation he had decided to take them to all of the Civil War battlefields.  The wife and children, who had been excited at the impending announcement, gave a bored, depressed look.  The advertisement went on to suggest to give your family an exciting cruise vacation instead.  Ironically, when…

Crockett’s Own Story

Recorded history may be more awash with opinion than fact.  Of course, movies and TV shows are designed to exaggerate and embellish stories for entertainment purposes, but an honest man’s own account will bear up against the cross examination of opinion.  I found “A Narrative of the Life of David Crockett” to be an interesting and well told story.  It is written in the language of the common back- woodsman in 1835 and doesn’t contain any contrived accents as used so prolifically by Mark Twain.  I believe a twelve year old would enjoy it as much as an adult.  It’s…

David Crockett

David Crockett wrote a narrative biography of his life in 1835.  Unable to abtain a ready copy of it, I picked up, “Davy Crockett, the Man, the Legend, the Legacy”, by Michael Lofaro.  This book is a book report on all the books, movies, TV shows, and periodicals written about the man.  That alone is enough to put it down, but I found the language also bizarre for such a topic.  “Walter Blairsville early on enumerated six separate identities for this Krishna of the American folk panthoen, and threw up his hands over the task of distinguishing between the ‘real’…

Only God is Good

“And a certain ruler asked him, saying, Good Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?  ‘Why do you call me good?’ Jesus answered.  ‘No one is good–except God alone.’ ” So many times over my life I have heard about the exceptionalism of the American people and its government.  This was usually equated to the general goodness of the people and their support for liberty (free speech, religion, etc.) and equality.  The American Revolution has been referred to as the “Glorious Revolution” even though there was never a majority of colonists who actively supported the war and a…

The Destruction of St Pierre

“Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” Galatians 6:7. I recently returned from a cruise to the Southern Caribbean and visited the island of Martinique.  I took a tour of the island which included a stop at the ruins of the former capital of St Pierre.  The town was in the shadow of Mt. Pelee.  This volcano had caused little trouble in the past but in 1902 produced the most devastating volcano eruption in terms of casualties in history, with almost 30,000 being killed. St Pierre, a region of France, was…

For Cause and Country

For Cause and Country, written by Eric Jacobson, is one of the very best books on the Civil War Battle of Franklin, TN.   It is an excellent read for those interested in the Civil War in general or the Battle of Franklin.  It is a thoroughly-researched book and gives an excellent battle narrative including incorporating eyewitness accounts from both sides. This battle fought in November 1864, only about four months before General Lee’s surrender, was one of the last major actions in the Civil War.  Confederate General John Bell Hood led his Army of the Tennessee in a desperate…

Silent Night

The Christmas Carol, Silent Night, was first sung on Christmas Eve of 1818.  The assistant priest at the newly established parish of St. Nicholas in Oberndorf Salzburg Austria was Joseph Mohr.  Earlier in the day he had handed over to the organist Franz Gruber a poem he had written in 1816 with the request to write a fitting melody for it which he did by the end of the day.  The song was included in the Christmas mass that evening.  Mohr sang the tenor part and provided accompaniment with guitar, while Gruber sang bass.  According to Gruber, the song was met…

Bethlehem

“But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.” Micah 5:2. “And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David): To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.   And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that…

Away in a Manger

Each year we see the familiar nativity scene during the Christmas season.  It is a reminder of the “reason for the season” which is the birth of our Savior.  I have fond memories as a child of being involved in my Christmas church play about Christ’s birth in the manger (always cast as one of the shepherds). St. Francis of Assisi is credited with staging the first nativity scene in 1223.  It is believed that St. Francis was first inspired with this idea after visiting the historical place of Christ’s birth on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land and noting the humble…

Over There

On November 11, at the World War I Armistice Day centennial observance, French President Emmanuel Macron stated that “Patriotism is the exact opposite of nationalism: Nationalism is treason.”  He went on to say that “If we think our interests may only come first and we don’t care for others, it is treason of our values, a betrayal of all moral values”.  He lamented that a renewed spirit of nationalism, brought on by the harsh terms imposed on Germany after World War I, led to World War II. This globalist view of the world is misguided.  Rising nationalism in Germany between…

Sea of Darkness

On a cold night in February 1864 George Dixon, captain of the CSS Hunley, and his crew of seven attacked and sunk the Federal blockading ship Housatonic in Charleston harbor becoming the first submarine ever to sink a ship.  The Hunley never returned to shore after the sinking and was presumed lost at sea.  The book, Sea of Darkness, written by Brian Hicks, tells the intriguing story.  The narrative bounces back and forth between the events leading up to the fateful night of the sinking and the events leading to the subsequent finding of the sunken Hunley in 1995, over…

Jeremy Taylor

Jeremy Taylor (1613-1667) was a cleric in the Church of England who achieved fame as an author during the rule of Oliver Cromwell.  He is frequently cited as one of the greatest prose writers in the English language.  He was chaplain to King Charles I but later served time in prison after the Puritan parliament won a victory over King Charles during the English Civil War.  After the restoration of the monarchy, Taylor was made a Bishop in Ireland. Taylor’s writings were very influential to many christians in the early days of America.  His two most famous works were The…

Is Life So Dear

“Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God!  I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty, or give me death. – Patrick Henry –March 23, 1775 The struggle for liberty and the destiny of the men who were willing to lay down their lives in its pursuit, and more so, their responsibility owed both to God and Country was at risk, the tipping point was eminent, the point of no return immediate.  However, long before this point in…

Inside The Third Reich

When I was in the seventh grade, around 1972, my English teacher handed out a book club flyer to encourage us to do some extra reading outside the normal reading assignments.  I was already an enthusiastic reader of books, mainly on history subjects, but rarely found any subject matter I liked in these book flyers.…

John Adams

I just finished watching the HBO series of John Adams, based the book by David McCullough.  I read the book when it came out several years ago.  If you have even the smallest interest in history these are well told representations of John Adams life and times.  One difference in the book was that it portrayed Mr. Adams Christian faith as having a much greater influence than that presented in the TV series.  In fact, but for the abstinence of the Adams in French decadence, while the ambassador…