“Now Tobiah the Ammonite was beside him, and he said, ‘Whatever they build, if even a fox goes up on it, he will break down their stone wall.’” —Nehemiah 4:3
“So we built the wall, and the entire wall was joined together up to half its height, for the people had a mind to work.” —Nehemiah 4:6
Thomas Jonathan Becomes “Stonewall” Jackson,
July 21, 1861
n 1861, eleven Southern states seceded from the United States. Virginia, one of the last to leave the Union, had been sharply divided. They even rejected secession initially, till President Lincoln demanded that the state supply troops for an invasion to coerce the separated states to return. Emotions ran high at the Virginia Military Institute, where one professor, Thomas Jonathan Jackson, offered his sword to defend the state. He was known for his strong Christian faith and moral rectitude. Within a month, Jackson, a Mexican War veteran and expert in the use of artillery, was awarded the command of a brigade of Virginia infantry. Although Major Jackson was respected as a war hero, the students teased him behind his back as the worst teacher at the Institute; some called him “Tom Fool.” A few wondered if his stiff manners and pedagogical incompetence would translate to the battlefield. They need not have worried.
Thomas Jonathan “Stonewall” Jackson (1824-1863)