Confederate Quotes

Then perhaps, to relax, Ewell directed the placement of a battery to cover the fort. At that moment a woman rode up to him to report what she had seen of the Federal advance. Ewell was no romantic like Beauregard or Rosser. He had little use for such heroines, and abruptly told her there would be firing here soon. "You’ll get killed," he said. "You’ll be a dead damsel in less than a minute. Get away from here! Get away!’ When Madam declined to leave, Ewell was astonished at her bravery. "Women," he said to Gordon, jerking his thumb in the lady’s direction. "I tell you, sir, women would make a grand brigade–if it was not for snakes and spiders! They don’t mind bullets–women are not afraid of bullets; but one big black snake would put a whole army to flight."

Lt. Gen. Richard S. Ewell
prior to the Battle of First Manassass
July, 21, 1861
Reminiscence of the Civil War
John B Gordon
Charles Scribner’s Sons
New York, 1903


[Referring to Ewell’s statement above] "And he had not fired very wide of the mark. It requires the direst dangers, especially where those dangers threaten some cause or object around which their affections are entwined, to call out the marvelous courage of women. Under such conditions they will brave death itself without a quiver. I have seen one of them tested. I saw Mrs. Gordon on the streets of Winchester, under fire, her soul aflame with patriotic ardor, appealing to retreating Confederates to halt and form a new line to resist the Union advance. She was so transported by her patriotic passion that she took no notice of the whizzing shot and shell, and seemed wholly unconscious of her great peril. And yet she will precipitately fly from a bat, and a big black bug would fill her with panic."

Lt. Gen. John B. Gordon
Reminiscence of the Civil War
John B Gordon
Charles Scribner’s Sons
New York, 1903


"Indeed in this war more truly than in any other the spirit of lovely woman points the dart, hurls the javelin, ignites the mine, pulls the trigger, draws the lanyard and gives a fiercer truer temper to the blade in far more literal sense than the mere muscular aggressions of man."

Maj. Gen. J.E.B. Stuart
from a letter to his cousin Nannie
Nov. 13, 1863