Winders, Jamie. "Imperfectly Imperial: Northern Travel Writers in the Postbellum U.S. South, 1865-1880." Annals of the Association of American Geographers, Vol. 95, No. 2 (Jun., 2005).
Jamie Winters argues that "the postwar South occupied a double place within the U.S. as both an occupied territory (re)captured through war and a part of the victorious nation itself." [391-92] This complex colonizer-colonized relationship helps to explain "both the nation's reaction to southern defeat and the relationship between a victorious North and a defeated South." 
The observations with Alcander's journal conform to Winters' indentification of the South as an "imperial holding" of the North, both outsider and insider.
A critical examination of the South's position as a post-Civil-War imperial holding can illustrate how in an immediate postbellum context, a regional binary acted as an internal colonizer-colonized distinction that became an organizing grammar for both the nation's reaction to southern defeat and the relationship between a victorious North and a defeated South. 
It [the article] discusses the ways the South has been studied as a region and an idea and connects these approaches to the burgeoning field of postcolonial studies, establishing the region's double placement as both "insider" and "out- sider" within the nation immediately after the Civil War. 
. . . [N]orthern travelers scripted the postbellum South in their travel narratives as an (always imperfect) imperial holding: discourses of civilization, descriptions of nature, and discussions of whiteness. 
Although descriptions of an uncivilized or primitive South were in circulation as early as the 1750s (Hobson 1985), the events preceding and following the Civil War took the depiction of the South as uncivilized to a new level. The South at large was criticized for its backward lifestyles and social practices across postbellum travel account . . . 
As the "natural" counterpart to an industrialized North that had distanced itself from nature, the nineteenth-century South was understood to be significantly closer to, as traveler Sidney Andrews (1866, 374) phrased it, a "Nature ... very kind in her gifts." Known for lush, untamed landscapes and bountiful green agricultural scenes, the South was envisioned as an idyllic place with abundant resources and climatic attributes (Currie-McDaniel 1992).