Chivalrous and Semi-Chivalrous Southrons.

 by J. W. De Forest; An Introduction to the "Sketches"

THEY certainly are, these “Southrons,” a different people from us Northerners; they are, perhaps, as unlike to us as the Spartans to the Athenians, or the Poles to the Germans; they are more simple than we, more provincial, more antique, more picturesque; they have fewer of the virtues of modern society, and more of the primitive, the natural virtues; they care less for wealth, art, learning, and the other delicacies of an urban civilization; they care more for individual character and reputation of honor.

            Cowed as we are by the Mrs. Grundy of democracy; moulded into tame similarity by a general education, remarkably uniform in degree and nature, we shall do well to study this peculiar people, which will soon lose its peculiarities; we shall do better to engraft upon ourselves its nobler qualities.

            Before entering this gallery of pictures which the abolition of slavery has destined to dispersion and decay, let me explain that by “chivalrous and semi- chivalrous Southrons” I do not mean crackers, sand-hillers, and other low- downers. Let me add also that I shall draw largely for portraits on the district in which for fifteen months I performed the duties of “Bureau Major.”

De Forest, J.W., “Chivalrous and Semi-Chivalrous Southrons” Harper’s New Monthly Magazine, Volume 38, Issue 224, January 1869; New York: Harper & Bros.

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