Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 36.djvu/92

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Southern Historical Society Papers.

But, in this twentieth century, of wireless telegrams, inhuman phonographs and mental searchlights, the almost universal ignorance of the most fecund, and most unique, epoch in national history, is at least inexcusable!

It was cause for sorrow that the gentle, but determined head of the U. D. C. found need for her proclamation, urging the Chapters to promote the knowledge of Davis and Lee. It was cause for shame, that in a long centennial twelvemonth, the small molehill of vis inertiate was never surmounted by the foot of action; and that its closing days see the schoolboys and girls of the South, reading of the executive of Confederate laws, and of the leaders of Southern armies, from books bearing an imprint far from their own.


The Davis family comes of Welsh descent; and it is singular to recall that the tough-fighting little State that so puzzled Edward Longshanks to conquer, lend forbears to so many notable factors in our Civil War. Another Davis family of Wales emigrated to South Carolina and intermarried with the Canty and other leading people of that State. Strangely, too, they went to Mississippi, and Robert, of the third generation, married the President's youngest sister, his "Little Polly."

The most French of Confederate Generals, and one of the most famous—the Preux chevalier of Louisiana Creole fighters – was also Welsh. Pierre Gustave Toutant de Beauregard came down in direct descent from Tider, the Young, a famous Welsh chief and last to yield "to proud England's power."

Strangest of all; the Great President – who opposed, overthrew and would never have imprisoned Jefferson Davis—was also from Welsh stock; his progenitors, like the Confederate's, having come to America from Wales and sat down among the people of Penn. In the earlier half of the eighteenth century three Welsh brothers, named Davis, sailed from Wales to settle in Pennsylvania. They were young men of the better farming class; not of the gentry, but said to be well-to-do and intent upon taking uplands. Singularly enough, their numerous descendants have no positive record of their advent, or even certainly of their names. Their most famous descendant in the third generation