Just a few thoughts on the rededication of Jeb Stuart’s portrait on May 12 at the Patrick County Veterans’ Memorial Building.
There can be no doubt that the road the portrait traveled from the Patrick County Courthouse to its new location was a little rough, with a few potholes and bumps. At this point it is as the old saying goes, “water under the bridge,“ because in this case we have a happy ending. It is also no doubt that the final destination is an appropriate place for General Stuart.
It was good to be among people who have a real understanding of complexities of the times in which Stuart lived and the difficult and gut-wrenching decisions he and thousands of others, North and South, had to make in that defining period in the history of our country, that was the War Between the States. I am confident that the people attending appreciate the history of our country, not selective history, all of it.
Stuart’s role was important in the history of our country, the history of our Commonwealth of Virginia, and he has a prominent place in the history of Patrick County. I would like to extend thanks to Roger Hayden, chairman of the Patrick County Board of Supervisors, for standing up for General Stuart and spearheading the efforts to have the portrait hung on the Wall of Honor.
Many thanks to go Wayne Jones for the words of reflection on J.E.B. Stuart’s life. I also wish to thank Del. Charles Poindexter and Henry County archivist Desmond Kendrick for their informative and enlightened comments on what history is really about.
A thank you goes to the large number of people who attended and a special thanks to the veterans who were present. One of the comments stated that “all veterans should be honored” and no truer words are spoken, because we are all Americans.
Ronnie S. Haynes
J.E.B. Stuart Birthplace