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civil war Quotes

21 of the best book quotes about civil war
  1. #1
    “We are never prepared for so many to die. So you understand? No one is. We expect some chosen few. We expect an occasional empty chair, a toast to dear departed comrades. Victory celebrations for most of us, a hallowed death for a few. But the war goes on. And men die. The price gets ever higher. Some officers can pay no longer. We are prepared to lose some of us, but never all of us. But that is the trap. You can hold nothing back when you attack. You must commit yourself totally. And yet, if they all die, a man must ask himself, will it have been worth it?”
  2. #2
    “The shepherd drives the wolf from the sheep’s for which the sheep thanks the shepherd as his liberator, while the wolf denounces him for the same act as the destroyer of liberty. Plainly, the sheep and the wolf are not agreed upon a definition of liberty.”
  3. #3
    “I believe this Government cannot endure, permanently half slave and half free.”
  4. #4
    “Saw the face of Robert Lee. Incredible eyes. An honest man, a simple man. Out of date. They all ride to glory, all the plumed knights.”
  5. #5
    “In great contests each party claims to act in accordance with the will of God. Both may be, and one must be wrong.”
  6. #6
    “It was not well to drive men into final corners; at those moments they could all develop teeth and claws.”
  7. #7
    “War means fighting, and fighting means killing.”
  8. #8
    “The Lord spared the fitten and the rest he seen fitten to die.”
  9. #9
    “My God! My God! What will the country say?”
  10. #10
    “With one terrible exception, the Civil War, law and the Constitution have kept America whole and free.”
  1. #11
    “From whence shall we expect the approach of danger? Shall some trans-Atlantic military giant step the earth and crush us at a blow? Never. All the armies of Europe and Asia...could not by force take a drink from the Ohio River or make a track on the Blue Ridge in the trial of a thousand years. No, if destruction be our lot we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of free men we will live forever or die by suicide.”
  2. #12
    “The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battle-field, and patriot grave, to every living heart and hearth-stone, all over this broad land, will yet swell the chorus of the Union, when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.
  3. #13
    “You think slavery is right and ought to be extended; while we think it is wrong and ought to be restricted. That I suppose is the rub. It certainly is the only substantial difference between us.”
  4. #14
    “On Lee as commander: “He had a cheerful dignity and could praise them (his men) without seeming to court their favor.”
  5. #15
    “The American Civil War produced carnage that has often been thought reserved for the combination of technological proficiency and inhumanity characteristic of a later time.”
  6. #16
    “The Civil War defined us as what we are and it opened us to being what we became, good and bad things... It was the crossroads of our being, and it was a hell of a crossroads.”
  7. #17
    “If men were equal in America, all these Poles and English and Czechs and blacks, then they were equal everywhere, and there was really no such thing as foreigner; there were only free men and slaves.”
  8. #18
    “In regards to this great Book [the Bible], I have but to say it is the best gift God has given to man. All the good the Savior gave to the world was communicated through this Book. But for it we could not know right from wrong. All things most desirable for man’s welfare, here and hereafter, are found portrayed in it.”
  9. #19
    “The will of God prevails. In great contests each party claims to act in accordance with the will of God. Both *may* be, and one *must* be, wrong. God cannot be *for* and *against* the same thing at the same time. In the present civil war it is quite possible that God’s purpose is something different from the purpose of either party - and yet the human instrumentalities, working just as they do, are of the best adaption to effect His purpose. I am almost ready to say that this is probably true - that God wills this contest, and wills that it shall not end yet. By His mere great power, on the minds of the now contestants, He could have either *saved* or *destroyed* the Union without human contest. Yet the contest began, And, having begun He could give the final victory to either side any day. Yet the contest proceeds.”
  10. #20
    “If there is a worse place than Hell, I am in it.”
  11. #21
    “At the onset of the Civil War, our stolen bodies were worth four billion dollars, more than all of American industry, all of American railroads, workshops, and factories combined, and the prime product rendered by our stolen bodies — cotton — was America’s primary export.”
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