Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Shelby Foote Buried Near Civil War Dead
Yahoo - AP ^ | 7/1/05 | WOODY BAIRD

Posted on 07/01/2005 11:47:34 AM PDT by Borges

MEMPHIS, Tenn. - Historian Shelby Foote was buried Thursday under a huge magnolia tree near the graves of Civil War combatants whose exploits he chronicled in one of the best-known books about the conflict.

Following a graveside service kept brief according to his wishes, Foote was buried on a tree-covered hill in Elmwood Cemetery, one of the South's most historic graveyards and the burial ground for more than 1,000 Civil War soldiers, including 22 generals.

"His wife told me he didn't want anything that even came close to a eulogy," said the Rev. John Sewell, pastor of St. John's Episcopal Church of Memphis. "He didn't want a lot of people standing around praying and talking about what a wonderful man he was."

Foote, 88, died at a Memphis hospital Monday night.

His three-volume history, "The Civil War: A Narrative," provided the main research for an 11-hour PBS documentary on the war that first aired in 1990, and Foote's appearance in the series made him a national figure.

Foote, a native of Mississippi and longtime Memphis resident, also wrote six novels, all set in the South. But it was the Civil War history for which he likely will be most remembered.

His soft Southern drawl, passion for storytelling and gentlemanly manner made Foote an instant hit after documentary maker Ken Burns picked him to be the leading historian on "The Civil War."

Foote's grave is beside the family plot of former Confederate Gen. Nathan Bedford Forrest, one of the war's most celebrated, and sometimes reviled, commanders. Forrest was buried at Elmwood in 1877, but his remains were moved in 1904 to a city park that bears his name.

Though a native Southerner, Foote was no apologist for the South or champion for the Southern cause in his novels or history.

"We're all glad secession didn't work," he once said in an interview.

The service for Foote drew several rangers from Shiloh National Military Park near the Tennessee River. Foote often visited Shiloh, the scene of some of the Civil War's most vicious fighting and one of his favorite battlefields.

Stacy Allen, Shiloh's chief historian, said park flags were lowered to half-staff in Foote's honor.

"He had a deep place in his heart for Shiloh, and he wrote one of the most readable and emotional histories of the Civil War," Allen said.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; US: Tennessee
KEYWORDS: burial; dixie; historians; shelbyfoote

1 posted on 07/01/2005 11:47:35 AM PDT by Borges
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: Borges

R.I.P., good man.


2 posted on 07/01/2005 11:54:06 AM PDT by iconoclast (Conservative, not partisan..)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Borges

May he rest in peace.

Semper Fi,
Kelly


3 posted on 07/01/2005 11:54:19 AM PDT by kellynla (U.S.M.C. 1st Battalion,5th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Div. Viet Nam 69&70 Semper Fi)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Borges

A great writer and historian. He wrote his own eulogy. RIP.


4 posted on 07/01/2005 11:54:23 AM PDT by Southside_Chicago_Republican (Render unto Caesar what is Caesar's, and unto God what is God's)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Southside_Chicago_Republican

</font>Writing from Memphis, he will be missed.


5 posted on 07/01/2005 11:55:42 AM PDT by Ingtar (Understanding is a three-edged sword : your side, my side, and the truth in between ." -- Kosh)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: Borges

Always thought these two could've been related.

6 posted on 07/01/2005 11:59:28 AM PDT by martin_fierro (Facetiousness really should pay better)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Borges

Shelby Foote has a deep place in my heart; his words and his voice gave clarity that was seldom if ever equaled. A rare historian indeed.


7 posted on 07/01/2005 11:59:41 AM PDT by yoe
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Borges

They don't make them like him anymore. The ultimate historian with great research AND presentation.


8 posted on 07/01/2005 12:04:10 PM PDT by tertiary01 (It took 21 years but 1984 finally got here.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: iconoclast

A Fine Gentleman and a great author.
His work ranks as truly great American History.


9 posted on 07/01/2005 12:05:18 PM PDT by newcthem
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Borges; Altair333; truthluva; struggle; Coast2Capitol; Sonny M; MississippyMuddy; goldensky; ...

YET another GREAT Mississippian Ping !!


10 posted on 07/01/2005 12:26:07 PM PDT by WKB (A closed mind is a good thing to lose.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Borges

He had one of the most beautiful voices I've ever heard. How I loved him in Ken Burns series on the Civil War!


11 posted on 07/01/2005 12:30:03 PM PDT by proudofthesouth (Boycotting movies since 1988)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: martin_fierro

They're dead Jim.


12 posted on 07/01/2005 12:34:29 PM PDT by Paleo Conservative (Hey! Hey! Ho! Ho! Andrew Heyward's got to go!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: Borges

"Foote often visited Shiloh, the scene of some of the Civil War's most vicious fighting"

my great granddaddy was there at Shiloh ,
he survived , God bless him....


13 posted on 07/01/2005 12:37:53 PM PDT by injin
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Borges

I had no idea he passed away...we've lost a fine one...


14 posted on 07/01/2005 12:38:04 PM PDT by WKUHilltopper
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Paleo Conservative

I wasn't *about* to go there.


15 posted on 07/01/2005 12:44:21 PM PDT by martin_fierro (< |:)~)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: Borges

Biography for
Shelby Foote

Birth name
Shelby Dade Foote Jr.
Spouse
Gwyn Foote (1956 - 27 June 2005) (his death)
? (1948 - 1952) 1 child
Tess Lavery (1944 - 1946)
Trivia

Historian and author. His 3-volume set "The Civil War: A Narrative" is one of the standard reference works on the subject.

He joined the Mississippi National Guard as a protest to Hitler's war. His writings were interrupted when the guard was mobilized by draft in the year 1940. By 1942, Foote was commissioned and promoted to Captain. However, while at a base in Northern Ireland, Shelby was accused of insubordination because he was in Belfast without leave, visiting the Irish girl whom he later married. In 1944, Shelby Foote was court martialed and dismissed from the service.

Foote remained relatively unknown before his role in Ken Burns' "The Civil War", a PBS documentary series first broadcast in 1990 which made him a cultural icon. Since that event, Foote has become widely viewed as an authority on the Civil War, and more generally, as a representative of an era and region whose place continues to be central to our country's understanding of itself.

He has been awarded three Guggenheim fellowships.

Attended the University of North Carolina from 1935 to 1937.

Biography/bibliography in: "Contemporary Authors". New Revision Series, Vol. 131, pages 159-162. Farmington Hills, MI: Thomson Gale, 2005.

After being discharged from the Army during World War II, he joined the Marines. He never saw combat.
Personal quotes

"Picking any one moment or place is a romantic approach to history that I'm uneasy about. Singling out any one event from history as all-important. Every event is led up to by so many others, small and large. Besides, what you think about and where you'd want to go keeps changing."

"Right now I'm thinking a good deal about emancipation. One of our sins was slavery. Another was emancipation. It's a paradox. In theory, emancipation was one of the glories of our democracy-and it was. But the way it was done led to tragedy. Turning four million people loose with no jobs or trades or learning. And then, in 1877, for a few electoral votes, just abandoning them entirely. A huge amount of pain and trouble resulted. Everybody in America is still paying for it."

"It would be nice to talk to Lincoln. He'd really talk to you. Maybe run circles around you. Not like others who you figure would be mostly rhetoric."

"History is a pretty wretched subject to study in school. As I remember it, it was terrible. They required me to memorize so many things. There was a Treaty of Utrecht, and it has thirteen steps. I don't know one of those steps. But it had thirteen."

"Plot makes a story move under its own power. And to neglect plotting as a device of history is a serious mistake. Among American historians, probably my favorite is Francis Parkman. Parkman's a wonderful historian. I had not read him until late in life to realize how good he was."

"People want to know why the South is so interested in the Civil War. I had maybe, it's a rough guess, about fifty fistfights in my life. Out of those fifty fistfights, the ones that I had the most vivid memory of were the ones I lost. I think that's one reason why the South remembers the war more than the North does."

The Marines had a great time with me. They said if you used to be a captain, you might make a pretty good Marine.
Where are they now

(2001) Still writing in Greenville, Mississippi.


16 posted on 07/01/2005 12:48:51 PM PDT by EdHallick (Dodo the kid from outer space, he has propellers on his heels)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: martin_fierro; Borges
Always thought these two could've been related.

If you can find a good picture of DeForest Kelley in the role of a Confederate officer he played in the movie "Raintree County" the resemblance is even more striking.

17 posted on 07/01/2005 12:58:24 PM PDT by tarheelswamprat (This tagline space for rent - cheap!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: martin_fierro

"D***it Jim, I'm a doctor, not a historian!"


18 posted on 07/01/2005 1:00:40 PM PDT by GreenHornet
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: tarheelswamprat; Borges

Close as I could get.

19 posted on 07/01/2005 1:04:50 PM PDT by martin_fierro (< |:)~)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: Borges
"He didn't want a lot of people standing around praying and talking about what a wonderful man he was."

I try to live my life in such a manner that I don't stress over such things.

20 posted on 07/01/2005 1:08:12 PM PDT by Joe 6-pack
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: martin_fierro

One from Georgia one from Mississippi. It is certainly possible.


21 posted on 07/01/2005 1:17:57 PM PDT by doodad
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: Borges
Stacy Allen, Shiloh's chief historian, said park flags were lowered to half-staff in Foote's honor.

What an honor for Mr. Foote.

22 posted on 07/01/2005 5:08:38 PM PDT by SuziQ
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SuziQ; WKB; bourbon

Captain Little Axe BUMP! (James Street...another great homey)

23 posted on 07/01/2005 5:46:19 PM PDT by wardaddy
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

To: wardaddy

Actually, I've never read any of his books; an oversight which will shortly be remedied.


24 posted on 07/01/2005 7:48:50 PM PDT by SuziQ
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 23 | View Replies]

To: WKB

Thanks for the ping as always - I hope everything goes well for you and get well soon!


25 posted on 07/01/2005 9:30:51 PM PDT by RKB-AFG (60 seats in '06)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: proudofthesouth
His narration really transported you into the sole of the letter writer. I have the video and it's still in shrink wrap. My son got them for me one Christmas because we watched the series together. Of course he also got me Rocky and his Friends...
26 posted on 07/01/2005 9:43:21 PM PDT by tubebender (Growing old is mandatory...Growing up is optional)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: RKB-AFG

Thanks for the ping as always - I hope everything goes well for you and get well soon!



Your welcome. Anytime
I am doing very well.
If I could break this addiction I have
I would be fine.
"Hello my name is WKB and I'm a Freeper"
:>)


27 posted on 07/01/2005 10:14:40 PM PDT by WKB (A closed mind is a good thing to lose.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 25 | View Replies]

To: wardaddy

I thought you were on vacation.

So this is for you too


"Hello my name is Wardaddy and I'm a Freeper"


28 posted on 07/01/2005 10:21:34 PM PDT by WKB (A closed mind is a good thing to lose.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 23 | View Replies]

To: Borges

http://www.booktv.org/Feature/index.asp?segID=1679&schedID=374

Book TV Programs
A Weekly Look at Selected Book TV Programs







On Saturday, July 2 at 4:00 pm





Re-air of the 2001 program In Depth: Shelby Foote
Watch

Description: In September 2001, Book TV traveled to Shelby Foote's home in Memphis, Tennessee. This three hour program looks at Mr. Foote's complete body of work. The Civil War historian died Monday, June 27th, at age 88.

Author Bio: Shelby Foote was born in Greenville, Mississippi in 1916. He attended the University of North Carolina from 1935 to 1937 where he frequently contributed to the school literary magazine Carolina. Mr. Foote’s first novel, "Tournament," was published in 1949. It was followed quickly by four other works of fiction: "Follow Me Down (1950)," "Love in a Dry Season (1951)," "Shiloh (1952)", and "Jordan County (1954)". The success of "Shiloh" prompted Random House publisher Bennett Cerf to ask Mr. Foote to write a short history of the Civil War to be published for the hundredth anniversary of the conflict. He eventually worked on this three-volume history of the war for twenty years, finally completing it in 1974.The trilogy includes "Fort Sumter to Perryville," published in 1958, "Fredericksburg to Meridian" published in 1963, and finally "Red River to Appomattox," published in 1974. In 1977 Shelby Foote published "September, September," a novel about events in the south in 1957. In the early 1990s, Shelby Foote participated in Ken Burns’ PBS documentary of the Civil War. In 1998, Jay Tolson edited and published "The Correspondence of Shelby Foote & Walker Percy," documenting Foote's sixty year friendship with southern novelist Walker Percy through the letters they exchanged. Also in 1998, Shelby Foote wrote a 10,000 word introduction to a new Modern Library edition of Stephen Crane's "Red Badge of Courage", the 19th century classic Civil War novel. Mr. Foote has been a Guggenheim Fellow, and a lecturer at the University of Virginia and Memphis State. At the time of his death June 27th, Shelby Foote lived in Memphis, Tennessee with his wife Gwen Rapier.

Publisher: Random House 299 Park Avenue New York, NY 10171


29 posted on 07/02/2005 1:18:40 PM PDT by leadpenny
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: leadpenny

I just watched the BookTV Cspan2 interview with Foote in his bedroom. It was fantastic.

I've never seen anyone age so well, he was mid 80's looked to be in his mid 60's to me.

And yes, he did have an incredible voice.


30 posted on 07/02/2005 4:06:11 PM PDT by Capn TrVth
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 29 | View Replies]

To: Borges

"The Civil War" may be the best documentary ever made, in large part due to Shelby Foote. He educated so many about a time that seemed remote. He put a human face on the Civil War for many people, me included.


31 posted on 07/02/2005 4:10:26 PM PDT by veronica (The clowns are now in meltdown mode. LOL...)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Borges

I miss him already. I wish I could thank him for his work.


32 posted on 07/02/2005 4:12:05 PM PDT by muir_redwoods (Free Sirhan Sirhan, after all, the bastard who killed Mary Jo Kopeckne is walking around free)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: WKB

My aunt had a Mac...which I could barely navigate....a G7 or something....helluva machine

I'm home now


33 posted on 07/03/2005 5:08:46 PM PDT by wardaddy
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 28 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson