But there was another reason Jackson was interested in the Junkin family. One of the reverend doctor’s eight children was the spirited, devout, and cheerfully irreverent Elinor, known as Ellie, a year younger than Jackson and still resident in the Junkin home . He had met her on an early visit and had become more intimate with her when they both began teaching Sunday school at the Presbyterian church in February 1852. Soon he was falling in love with her , though it apparently took a bit of time before he understood what was happening to him. Harvey Hill describes a visit from Jackson during which, no matter what Hill said, Jackson would manage to maneuver the conversation back to Ellie. Jackson finally confessed, “I don’t know what has changed me. I used to think her plain, but her face now seems to me all sweetness .” Hill started to laugh and then replied, “You are in love. That’s what is the matter!” According to Hill, Jackson then “blushed up to the eyes, and said that he had never been in love in his life, but he certainly felt differently toward this lady from what he had ever felt before.” 13
Gwynne, S. C. (2014-09-30). Rebel Yell: The Violence, Passion, and Redemption of Stonewall Jackson (Kindle Locations 2677-2682). Scribner. Kindle Edition.
If you have ever had a crush, you know exactly what has been going on with Jackson.
But enough of that, just suffice to say that sometimes falling for someone causes one's behavior to change. Like talking about someone a lot, or not reading as much as one did in the past. That kind of thing.
The BIG thing that I can't get past with Jackson, is of course, his stand on slavery. Apparently there is not much written about how Jackson felt about this evil. Just that he took the Bible literally and there is slavery in the Bible and so he couldn't see how it could be wrong then. Jackson was not as smart as many think he was, is all I can say.
It is hard for me to have full love for this man. I know that people are complicated and life is complicated, but how one could look at the institution of slavery and not recognize its inherent evilness...well, that is very, very hard to understand.