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Ozzy

Duty -- Honor -- Country

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Albert Sidney Johnston's last duty station with the U.S. Army was at San Francisco, California in early 1861. Shortly after his arrival there, he faced a dilemma (similar to that faced by Robert E. Lee): what to do when (and if) his State seceded. In Johnston's case, his State was Texas.

When that time came, and Johnston decided to resign from the U.S. Army and "follow his State" into the Confederacy, he now faced another dilemma: how to conduct himself while still Senior Officer in California... waiting for his resignation to be accepted... awaiting arrival of his replacement as Commander of the Department of the Pacific. William Preston Johnston covers this important topic well in the biography of his Father, The Life of General Albert Sidney Johnston (especially pages 256-293.) But, for those without time to read 30-plus pages, I can recommend I will call a Traitor a Traitor by Brian McGinty. Only three or four pages long, it is concise and accurate, and explains why and how Albert Sidney Johnston conducted himself the way he did -- while still in the service of the U.S. Government; while crossing the desert east, with fellow travellers to take up the Confederate cause; and where his loyalty truly resided.

Ozzy

 

References:  http://www.militarymuseum.org/Johnston.html   (McGinty's work on AS Johnston, care of Military Museum of California)

http://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=nyp.33433082381157;view=1up;seq=9   (The Life of General AS Johnston, from HathiTrust)

 

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