It may be un-PC to say this, but I am a daughter of the Confederacy.
My great-grandfather, Archie Cox, lived in Boyle County, Kentucky, so not surprisingly, he enlisted in the CSA shortly after war began. He left his wife and the three sons in the family at the time --- including my grandfather, who was 7 months old in April 1861.
He fought under Brigadier General John Hunt Morgan, who was famous for his 1,000-mile raid from Tennessee as far north as Ohio.
Archie was with Morgan's Raiders when they met the 73rd Indiana Infantry and 5th U.S. Regulars, led by Captain William J. Davis. While crossing the Blue River near Pekin, Indiana, sometime around July 11, 1863, Archie and some of his fellow rebels were captured for trying to steal horses from the Union camp. He was sent to the county jail in New Albany, Ohio; he reportedly escaped, but our family's not sure how long he was a prisoner.
Beyond those tidbits, there's really no family knowledge of Archie ever having fought in any major battles. I'd never known this part of my family history until last year, when one of my cousins sent me a link to a family tree website.
So you can imagine I had some mixed feelings when Ken and I rented Ken Burns' documentary "The Civil War" from 1990. I doubt that Archie and his family ever owned slaves. From the photos I've seen of my dad when he was a boy, they were dirt poor. Archie probably fought for the CSA because he was from Kentucky, my great-grandmother was from Virginia, and loyalty to one's state ran deeper than loyalty to the country.
In the years after the war, veterans on both sides were able to speak with respect for the courage of former enemies. But 150 years later, the war still is a sore point with many people. Renaming parks in Memphis has been a heated issue. It seems a shame to see history erased from memory. History --- as we can see from the history being made today --- is complex, far from black and white. Nobility and corruption characterized the Blue and the Gray. We would do well to remember the words from Lincoln's Second Inaugural Address: "With malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in, to bind up the nation's wounds ..."