Sullivan Ballou Redux

8 04 2009

Here’s another version of Sullivan Ballou’s famous letter.  Hat tip to Dmitri.

Not my cup of tea, but whatever floats your boat.  See here for all my posts on Ballou, including what I think is the most complete and accurate version of the letter (the whereabouts of which are not known).

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11 responses

8 04 2009
steve keating

Harry

It almost goes without saying that the letter was read that way for it’s emotional impact. If you listen to the reader carefully, it sounds like he got chocked up reading it, there is a slight break, followed by a very flat narration. Appreciate you posting the whole thing.

Steve Keating

8 04 2009
steve keating

Sorry, ment choke instead of chock.

8 04 2009
Harry Smeltzer

I’m thinking you meant “she” instead of “he” too? Or are you referring to the David McCullough reading from the Ken Burns documentary?

8 04 2009
Harry Smeltzer

Now that I think of it, that wasn’t McCullough who read the letter…it was the late actor Paul Roebling.

8 04 2009
cenantua

I’m just not as moved by this rendition, not to mention that it is wayyy off the hook, but that’s just my opinion.

8 04 2009
Harry Smeltzer

Me either. It kind of reminds me of a song on Alanis Morrisette’s second album. But I’ve never been big on opera or operatic voice (‘cept Mario Lanza and a good beer drinkin’ song!)

8 04 2009
steve keating

I meant ‘he’ from the Ken Burns documentary. I really haven’t listen to the opera version, as I’m not that big on it either. That makes me a cultural Neanderthal, I guess.

8 04 2009
Chris Evans

Harry,
What was your overall impression of Robin Young’s ‘For Love and Liberty: The Untold Civil War Story of Major Sullivan Ballou and His Famous Love Letter’? It seems impressive at least in its doorstopper size.
Thanks for the post,
Chris

8 04 2009
Harry Smeltzer

Uneven. Way to much “might have beens” and “probablies” and “must haves”. Lots of filler. LOTS of mistakes in the Bull Run part. But also some good stuff, background on Rhode Island and on the 2nd RI, and on the Ballou family.

I read the WHOLE thing.

8 04 2009
Chris Evans

Thanks Harry,
I’ll try to dive into it in the near future. I had read that the First Bull Run part was a sizable part of the book itself. I see that you are reading ‘In Camp and Battle with the Washington Artillery’. I purchased that book last year and have really enjoyed reading it. It really contains some classic anecdotes of the Army of Northern Virginia. I love the part at Appomattox with Custer and Longstreet. Something about the artillerists in the ANV made them good writers: Porter Alexander, Poague, and Owen are really wonderful to read. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
Chris

9 04 2009
Craig Swain

I guess to each his own, but I’d sit and listen to her sing the phone book.

Then again, I’ve asked Celtic Women if they could cover the US Tax Code….

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