June 25, 1864

About the Size of It

Artist Unknown

General Ulysses Grant’s line, “Well, and what if it should come to a Kilkenny fight? I guess Our Cat has got the longest tail!” refers to an old Irish myth. In this myth, two cats fight until only their tails remain. The use of animals as symbols for the Confederacy and the Union allow for a more metaphorical approach to the gravity of the physical combat between the North and the South. The combat can be construed as an encounter of untamed violence, making death its biggest remnant.

Ana Hurtado

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