Mallard’s Book Chapter Profiles Former Savannah Newspaperman
(February 28, 2011) Bruce Mallard, Armstrong Atlantic State University instructor of political science, has authored a book chapter, “James Roddy Sneed: ‘There Can Be No Greater Tyranny Than a Muzzled Press.'” The chapter is part of Knights of the Quill: Confederate Correspondents and their Civil War Reporting, a 729-page book published in December 2010 by Purdue University Press.
Mallard's 30-page chapter offers a profile of Sneed, editor of the Savannah Republican from 1855-1864. The Republican was a weekly newspaper that turned daily in the 1850s and published between 1802 and 1872. At one time Sneed owned the paper after purchasing it at a public auction.
Sneed temporarily left Savannah after the arrival of General William Sherman in December 1864. He continued to edit the newspaper while working in the Confederate war effort, even though his paper had opposed the war and Sneed himself was “anxious to avoid disunion.” In addition to editing the Savannah Republican, he was the collector of the Port of Savannah and served on the Confederate States' Depository, which among other things included being an army paymaster. He also held positions with the U.S. Treasury Department and the U.S. Senate.
“He was a fairly important person in the Confederacy who worked out of the Custom House downtown,” said Mallard.
In summarizing his subject, Mallard said: “James Roddy Sneed was a poet at heart who wrote prolifically about the Civil War without wandering far from his hometown or his five motherless children. He was a Unionist in principle and an outspoken advocate of good reporting and free speech who advocated an unfettered press and worked to protect free speech for newsmen as he fought military censorship.”
During the research for his chapter, Mallard, a native of Nashville, Tenn., learned about Savannah's past.
“This research allowed me to learn more about a fascinating era and an interesting person who played an integral part in Savannah history,” he said.
The 29-chapter Knights of the Quill was edited by Patricia G. McNeely, journalism professor emerita at the University of South Carolina; Debra Reddin van Tuyll, professor of communications at Augusta State University in Georgia; and Henry H. Schulte, retired professor of public affairs reporting at Ohio State University.
Mallard joined Armstrong in 2009 as an adjunct teacher and became an instructor of political science in 2010. A native of Nashville, Tenn., he teaches classes in American government, Georgia history and government, the presidency, the U.S. Congress and ethics in government.
He holds a Ph.D. in political science from The University of Tennessee, a master's degree in public administration from Middle Tennessee State University and a bachelor's degree in political science from Georgia Peabody College.