Considering Capt. Raphael Semmes - Pi...

Considering Capt. Raphael Semmes - Pirate or Patriot? - Greenwi...

There are 2 comments on the Brooks Community Newspapers story from Sep 16, 2008, titled Considering Capt. Raphael Semmes - Pirate or Patriot? - Greenwi.... In it, Brooks Community Newspapers reports that:

Considering Capt. Raphael Semmes - Pirate or Patriot? Article Last Updated: 09/16/2008 11:35:25 PM EDT Having lived in the nutmeg state now for 30 years, I can claim to be a Connecticut Yankee but last Saturday ...

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Oliver Semmes

Pensacola, FL

#1 Sep 26, 2008
From time to time during my three score and ninteen years I have been compelled to correct error regarding my great great grandfather, Raphael Semmes. It is a source of some unearned pride for me that I share September 27 as a birthdate and his strong Roman Catholic faith. I hope that I have inherited his strong sense of justice...and this is my purpose in writing.
Stephen Fox's book Wolf of the Deep contains the sort of errors of which I speak.
First, he conjectures that a ten month pregnance is proof that one of Semmes's children is illegitimate. Next, he paints Semmes as a pirate which any literate person knows is a blatant lie or unfamiliar with the English usages.
One need only search using Google to find plenty enough to refute Fox's statements. I suppose, having borrowed from Semmes's writings, he had to add something of his others have done. And the consequence of such adventurism, to use a somewhat forced euphamism.
One can learn much about honor from reading about Raphael Semmes. For the academically inclined reader I recommend his own books Memoirs of Service Afloat and Ashore During the Mexican War as well as Memoirs of Service Afloat During the War Between the States. For a somewhat easier read I recommend Raphael Semmes, the Philosophical Mariner by Warren F. Spencer. This latter is a wonderful work that captures Semmes's fine intellect, sense of humor and fine character. Spencer shares his own thoughts about Semmes in these words, "His personality comes out in all his writings; his strong intellect constantly challenged me. I have learned from him in the meaning of honor and the value of sacrificing one's self for the sake of one's convictions. My travel through Raphael Semmes's has, in the sunset of my career, given me a new meaning to tis period of my own esistence. And for that, I thanks Raphael Semmes."
Thank you for this opportunity to correct an unjust slight of an honorable and faithful man.

Oliver J. Semmes III
Navarre, Florida
Ken Sheppard

South Africa

#3 Nov 18, 2008
Thanks to Oliver Semmes for setting the record straight, Capt.Raphael Semmes is undeserving of the deliberate lies and half truths that have besmirched the memory of this honourable man.

Ken Sheppard
Mossel Bay
South Africa

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