The Final Struggles: September 1864 to April 1865

The Final Struggles: September 1864 to April 1865

Did each man believe that he was right?

While allowing for a bit of hyperbole in the statements of both Hood and Sherman, we can state that they really believed their words. To Hood, it was obvious that Sherman intended to destroy the South he had always known; to Sherman, it was equally apparent that Hood and his fellow Confederates had thrown out the rule book when they seceded from the nation in the first place.

The most bitter part of Hood’s letter, the section having to do with making “negroes your allies,” was part of the debate that would continue for the rest of the war and for some time thereafter. Many white Southerners, including General Hood, found it difficult to believe that any fellow whites, even if they were Northerners, would really wish to supplant white majority rule in the South with rule by a people that they considered just two steps removed from barbarism.


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