Reader takes exception to Pernell statements

Dear Editor,

I have some serious concerns about the false and inaccurate statements that Mr. Brence Pernell opined in your newspaper.

First of all, I am deeply offended that he would compare my confederate ancestors to the Nazis. The southern people didn’t exterminate six million slaves. The southern people did not systemically round up African slaves and kill them by the millions just because of who they were.

Now, I am not naive enough to deny the fact that the slaves were sometimes mistreated because they were, and it was not right.

But here are some facts that Mr. Pernell should be made aware of. A study was conducted of the 1860 census, which was the last census taken before the beginning of the war in 1861. It showed 5.9 percent of southern families owned slaves...5.9 percent!

So tell me what were the 96.1 percent fighting for? They certainly were not fighting for the rich aristocracy in Charleston to keep their slaves.

My mother’s confederate ancestors did not own slaves. They were not fighting to preserve the institution of slavery. They were defending their homes from northern invaders.

People forget that we were invaded by President Lincoln’s invading army.

And here is another little fact for Mr. Pernell. My father’s family did own slaves in Barnwell, but when Gen. Sherman invaded South Carolina, and ruthlessly burned innocent people’s homes to the ground, he treated the slaves so badly that 28 out of the 39 slaves that my family owned went back to the plantation because they were treated better. I have family documents that state when the slaves were sick they were brought to the house and cared for by my great-great-grandmother.

So, don’t compare my family to the Nazis of Germany.

Mr. Pernell was so concerned about the answers he would have for his niece if she asked the question about the Confederate Monument on the square in Barnwell. Did she even ask you about the monument Mr. Pernell, or are you just bringing all of this up to stir up strife in the area? That’s what it seems like to me. At least tell her the truth, and not what she is being taught in school, which is not the truth.

As I said earlier 5.9 percent of southern families owned slaves, 94.1 percent did not.

Gen Robert E. Lee, the commanding general of the confederate army (who is portrayed as the devil himself) did not own slaves, but his wife Mary Custis Lee who was a descendant of George Washington did own slaves, but after they were married, Gen. Lee freed the slaves that her family owned. And yes, George Washington, the father of our country was a slave owner.

Lt. Gen.Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson, who was one the most brilliant military men of all time and a fanatically religious man, and served under Gen. Lee, owned 7 slaves. He and his wife Mary Anna taught their slaves how to read the bible, and the way to salvation through Jesus Christ.

I’m sure that Mr. Pernell was unaware of that. But, the again maybe he does know that but omits it from his version of history.

James Harley