LAYING OF THE CORNER-STONE OF THE MONUMENT
SOLDIERS' NATIONAL CEMETARY AT GETTYSBURG
His Excellency, Andrew Johnson, President of the United States, having been prevented from begin present, by reason of sever illness, sent the Marshal of the District of Columbia, Judge Gooding, as his special messenger, who presented the following communication from His Excellency:
Dear Sir,--- I had promised myself the pleasure of participating in person in the proceedings at Gettysburg to-morrow. That pleasure, owing to my indisposition, I am reluctantly compelled to forego. I should have been pleased, standing on that twice consecrated spot, to share with you your joy at the return of peace, to greet with you the surviving heroes of the war who come back with light hearts, though heavy laden with honors, and with you to drop grateful tears to the memory of those who will never return.
Unable to do so in person, I can only send you my greetings, and assure you of my full sympathy with the purpose and spirit of your exercises to-morrow. Of all the anniversaries of the Declaration of Independence, none has been more important and significant than that upon which you assemble.
Four years of struggle for our nations' life have been crowned with success; armed treason is swept from the land; our ports are re-opened; our relations with other nations are of the most satisfactory character; our internal commerce is free; our soldiers and sailors resume the peaceful pursuits of civil life; our flag floats in every breeze; and the only barrier to our national progress--- human slavery---is for ever at an end. Let us trust that each recurring Fourth of July shall find out nation stronger in numbers, stronger in wealth, stronger in the harmony of its citizens, stronger in its devotion to nationality and freedom.
As I have often said, I believe that God sent this people on a mission among the nations of the earth, and that when He founded our nation He founded it in perpetuity. That faith sustained me through the struggle that is past. It sustains me now that new duties are devolved upon me and new dangers threaten us. I feel that whatever the means He uses, the Almighty is determined to preserve us as a people.
And since I know the love our fellow-citizens bear their country, and the sacrifices they have made for it, my abiding faith has become stronger than ever that a "government of the people" is the stronger as well as the best of governments.
In your joy to-morrow, I trust you will not forget the thousands of whites, as well as blacks, whom the war has emancipated, who will hail this Fourth of July with a delight which no previous Declaration of Independence ever gave them. Controlled so long by ambitious, selfish leaders, who used them for their own unworthy ends, they are now free to serve and cherish the government against whose life they, in their blindness, struck. I am greatly mistaken if in the States lately in rebellion we do not henceforward have an exhibition of such loyalty and patriotism as were never seen nor felt there before.
Having consecrated a National Cemetery, your are not to lay the corner-stone of a National Monument, which, in all human probability, will rise to the full height and proportion you design. Noble as this monument of stone may be, it will be but a faint symbol of the grand monument which, if we do our duty, we shall raise among the nations of the earth upon the foundation laid nine and eighty years ago in Philadelphia. Time shall wear away and crumble this monument, but that, based as it is, upon the consent, virtue, patriotism and intelligence of the people, each year shall make firmer and more imposing.
Your Friend and fellow-citizen,
Remarks and Prayer were made by the Rev. Stephen H. Tyng. D.D.
(Sung by the National Union Musical Association.)
This battle field---our nation's glory,---
Where sweetly sleeps our fallen braves;
Proclaims aloud the tragic story---
This story of their hallowed graves!
Yes! Here on Gettysburg's sad plain,
This monument the tale will tell,
That thousands for their flag were slain---
Whilst fighting for the Union---fell!
Here red artillery's deadly fire
Mowed squadrons down in dread array;
Here Meade compelled Lee to retire;
And Howard held his ground that day.
Then let those tattered banners wave;
For ever sacred be this ground;
Sing paens to those warriors brave,
And be their deeds with glory crowned.
Wives, mothers, sisters, orphans dear,
Shall gather round each clay-cold bed,
And mourn their loved ones buried here---
Their husbands, fathers, brothers dead.
Now on this consecrated ground,
Baptized with patriots' sacred blood,
We dedicate each glorious mound
To the Union Battle Flag and God!
As I stand here to-day before a peaceful audience, composed as it is of beautiful ladies, joyous children and happy citizens, and think of my last visit to this place two years ago, and of the terrible scenes in which it was my lot to bear a part, I cannot help exclaiming, "How changed! How changed!" It is the same rich landscape, broad and beautiful, covered with every variety of natural objects to please the eye; the same wooded ridges and cultivated fields; the same neat little town clinging to the hill-side; the same wooded ridges and cultivated fields; the same broad avenues of approach; the same ravines and creeks--- but, thank God, the awful magnificence of hosts arrayed against each other in deadly strife is wanting. Yonder heights are no longer crowned with hostile cannon; the valleys do not reverberate with their fearful roar; the groves and the houses do not give back the indescribable peal of the musketry fire. And oh, how like a dream, to-day seems that sad spectacle of broken tombstones, prostrate fences, and the grown strewn with our wounded and dead companions! Then follows, after battle, the mingling of friends and enemies, with suffering depicted in all possible modes of portraiture. The surgeons, with resolute hearts and bloody hands; the pail faces of relatives searching for dear ones; the busy sanitary and Christian workers-- all pass before my mind in group after group.
My friends, my companions, my countrymen, suffer me to congratulate you anew to-day, this Fourth of July, 1865, that this sad work is completely done, and that sweet peace has really dawned upon us.
On the nineteenth of November, 1863, this National Cemetery, a pious tribute to manliness and virtue, was consecrated. The Hon. Edward Everett delivered an address in his own rich, clear, elegant style, which, having been published, has long ago become historical, and affords us a complete and graphic account of the campaign and battle of Gettysburg. I am deeply grateful to this noble patriot for his indefatigable industry in securing facts, and for the clear narrative he has left us of this battle, in which every living loyal soldier who fought here, is now proud to have borne a part. He, joining the patriotic band of those that are honored by his eloquence, has gone to his reward; and let his memory ever be mingled with those here, upon whose graves he so earnestly invoked your benediction.
Mr. Everett was followed by the few remarkable words of President Lincoln. While Mr. Lincoln's name is so near and dear to us, and the memory of his work and sacrifice so fresh, I deem it not inappropriate to repeat his own words:
"Fourscore and seven years ago, our fathers brought forth upon this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.
"Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation, so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle field of that war. We are met to dedicate a portion of it as the final resting-place of those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.
"But in a larger sense we cannot dedicate, we cannot consecrate, we cannot hallow this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it far above our power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember, what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us, the living, rather to be dedicated here to the unfinished work that they have thus far so nobly carried on. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us; that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to the cause for which they here gave the last full measure of devotion; that we here highly resolve that the dead shall not have died in vain: that the nation shall, under God, have a new birth of freedom, and that the government of the people, by the people, and for the people, shall not perish from the earth."
The civil war is ended; the test was complete. He, Abraham Lincoln, never forgot his own dedication till the work was finished. He did display even increased devotion if it were possible. The dead did not die in vain, and the nation has experienced already the new birth of freedom of which he spoke. Oh that in the last throes of darkness and crime God had seen in good to have spared us that great heart, out of which proceeded such welcome words of truth and encouragement! How very much of grateful recollection clusters around the name of Abraham Lincoln, as we pronounce it here among the dead who have died that their nation might not perish from the earth!
These grounds have already been consecrated, and are doubly sacred from the memory of our brethren who lie here, and from the association with those remarkable men, Mr. Everett and Mr. Lincoln, who gave tone to the exercises of consecration two years ago, whose own bodies are now resting beneath the sod, but whose spirit is still living, and unmistakably animating every true American heart this day. We have now been called to lay the corner-stone of a monument. This monument is not a mere family record, not the simple memorial of individual fame, nor the silent tribute to genius. It is raised to the soldier. It is a memorial of his life and his death. It embraces a patriotic brotherhood of heroes in its inscriptions, and is an unceasing herald of labor, suffering, union, liberty, and sacrifice. Let us then, as is proper on such an occasion as this, give a few thoughts to the American soldier.
We have embraced under this generic name of soldier, the dutiful officer, the volunteer soldier, the regular, the colored and the conscript; but in my remarks I will present you the private volunteer as the representative American soldier.
In the early part of 1861, the true citizen heard that traitors at Washington had formed a conspiracy to overthrow the Government, and soon after, that the starts and stripes had been fired upon and has been hauled down at the bidding of an armed enemy in South Carolina; that the Capitol of the nation was threatened, and that our new President had called for help. How quickly the citizen answered the call! Almost like magic he sprang forth a soldier. His farm or his bench, his desk or his counter, was left behind, and you find him marching through the then gloomy, flagless, defiant streets of Baltimore, fully equipped for service, with uniform gray, blue, red, or green---it then mattered not; with knapsack, cartridge-box, musket and bayonet, his outfit was all that was required. He was a little awkward, his accoutrements much awry, his will unsubdued. He did not keep step to music, nor always lock step with his companions. He scarcely ever fired a must, but he had become a soldier, put on the soldier's garb, set his face towards the enemy, and, God willing he purposed never to burn back till the soldier's work was done. You meet him at Washington---on Meridian Hill perhaps; discipline and drill seize upon him, restrain his liberty and mould his body. Colonels, captains, lieutenants and sergeants, his former equals, order him about, and he must obey them. Oh what days! And oh what nights! Where is home and affection? Where is the soft bed and the loaded table? Change of climate, change of good, want of rest, want of all kinds of old things, and an influx of all sorts of new things, make him sick---yes, really sick in body and soul. But, in spite of a few doses of quinine and a wholesome hospital bed and diet (as the soldier of 1861 remembers them), his vigorous constitution and indomitable heart prevail, so that he is soon able to cross the Long Bridge and invade the sacred red clay of Virginia, with his companions in arms. Yet, perhaps should you now observe him very closely, you will perceive his enthusiasm increasing faster even than his strength. He is on the enemy's side of the river; now for strict guard duty; now for the lonely picket amid the thickets, where men are killed by ambushed foes. How the eye and the ear, and may I say it, the heart are quickened in these new and trying vigils! Before long, however, the soldier is inured to these things; he becomes familiar with every stump, tree, and pathway of approach, and his trusty gun, and stouter heart, defy any secret foe.
Presently you find him on the road to battle; the hot weather of July, the usual load, the superadded twenty extra rounds of cartridges, and three days rations strung to his neck, and the long weary march, quite exhaust his strength during the very first day. He aches to leave the ranks and rest, but no, no! He did not leave home for the ignominious name of "straggler" and "skulker." Cost what it may, he toils on. The Acotink, the Cub Run, the never-to-be-forgotten Bull Run, are passed. Here, of a sudden, strange and terrible sounds strike upon his ear, and bear down upon his heart; the booming of shotted cannon; the screeching of bursted shell through the heated air, and the zip, zip, zip of smaller balls; everything produces a singular effect upon him. Again, all at once he is thrown, quite unprepared, upon a new and trying experience; for now, he meets the groaning ambulance and the bloody stretcher. He meets limping, armless, legless, disfigured, wounded men. To the right of him and to the left of him are the lifeless forms of the slain. Suddenly a large iron missile of death strikes close beside him and explodes, sending out twenty or more jagged fragments, which remorselessly maim or kill five or six of his mates before they have had the opportunity to strike one blow for their country. His face is now very pale; and will not the American soldier flinch and turn back? There is a stone wall! There is a building! There is a stack of hay! It is so easy to hide! But no. He will not be a coward. "O God, support and strengthen me!" 'Tis all his prayer. Soon he is at work. Yonder is the foe! "Load and fire!" But the cry comes, "Our flank is turned!" "Our men retreat!" With tears pouring down his cheek he slowly yields, and joins the retiring throng. Without any more nerve and little strength, he struggles back from a lost field. Now he drinks the dregs of suffering. Without blanket for the night, without food, without hope, it is no wonder that a panic seizes him and he runs demoralized away.
The disreputable course, however, is only temporary. The soldier before long forgets his defeats and his sufferings, brightens up his armor, and resumes his place on the defensive line. He submits for weary days to discipline, drill and hard fare; he wades through the snows of winter and the deep mud of a Virginia spring. He sleeps upon the ground, upon the deck of transport steamer, and upon the floor of the platform card. He helps load and unload stores; he makes fascines and gabions; he corduroys quicksands, and bridges, creeks and bogs. Night and day her digs, or watches in the trenches.
What a world of new experience! What peculiar labor and suffering he passes through, the soldier alone can tell you. He now marches hurriedly to his second battle; soon after he is in a series of them. Fight and fall back! Fight and fall back! Oh those days of hopelessness, sorrow, toil, and emaciation! How vividly the living soldier remembers them, those days when he cried from the bottom of his heart, "O God, how long! How long!" Would you have patience to follow him through the commingling of disasters from the battle of Cedar Mountain to the same old Bull Run, you would emerge with him from the chaos and behold his glistening bayonet again on the successful field of Antietam, where a glimmer of hope lighted up his heart. Would you go with him to the bloody fields of Fredericksburg, staunch his wounds in the Chancellorsville, and journey on with him afterwards to this hallowed ground of Gettysburg; and could you be enabled to read and record his toils, his sufferings, and all his thoughts, you might be able to appreciate the true American soldier. You might then recite the first chapter of the cost of the preservation of the American Union.
In September, 1863, after the battle of Gettysburg, the Government sends two army corps to reinforce our brethren in the West. The soldier is already far from home and friends, but he is suddenly apprised that he must go two thousand mils further. He cannot visit his family to take leave of them. He has scarcely the opportunity of writing a line of farewell. The chances of death are multitudinous as they appear before his imagination, and the hope of returning is very slender. Yet again the soldier does not falter. With forty others he crowds into the close, unventilated freight car, and speeds away, night and day, without even the luxury of a decent seat. With all the peculiar discomforts of this journey, the backings and the waitings at the railroad junctions, the transfers from car to car, and from train to train; being confined for days without solace and strength derived from his coffee, there is yet something compensative in the exhilarating influence of change. And there is added to it, in passing through Ohio and Indiana, a renewed inspiration as the people turn out in masses to welcome him and to bid him God Speed; as little girls throw wreaths of flowers round his neck, kiss his bronzed cheek, and strew his car with other offerings of love and devotion. Such impressions as were here received were never effaced. They touched the rough heart anew with tenderness, and, being a reminder of all the old home affections, only served to deepen his resolution sooner or later, by the blessing of God, to reach the goal of his ambition; that is to say, with his compatriots, to secure to his children and to other children, enduring peace, with liberty and an undivided country. He passes on through Kentucky, through the battle fields of Tennessee, already historical. The names, Nashville, Stone River, Murfressboro, and Tullahoma, remind him of past struggles and portend future conflicts. He is deposited at Bridgeport, Alabama, a houseless, cheerless, chilly place, on the banks of the Tennessee; possessing no interest further than that furnished by the railroad bridge destroyed, and the yet remaining rubbish and filth of an enemy's camp.
Before many days the soldier threads his way up the valley of the great river which winds and twists amid the rugged mountains, till he finds himself beneath the rock-crowned steeps of Lookout. Flash after flash, volume after volume of light-colored smoke, and peal on peal of cannon, the crashing sound of shot and the screaming of shell are the ominous signs of unfriendly welcome sent forth to meet him from his rocky height. Yet on he marches, in spite of threatening danger, in spite of the ambush along his route, until he has joined hands with his Western brother, who had come from Chattanooga to meet and greet him.
This is where the valley of Lookout joins that of the Tennessee. At his place the stories of Eastern and Western hardship, suffering, battling, and danger, are recapitulated and made to blend into the common history and the common sacrifice of the American soldier.
Were there time I would gladly take you step by step with the soldier as he bridges and crosses the broad and rapid river; as he ascends and storms the height of Mission Ridge; or as he plants his victorious feed, waves his banner, and flashes his gun on the top of Lookout Mountain. I would carry you with him across the death-bearing streams of Chickamauga. I would have you follow him in his weary, barefooted, wintry march to the relief of Knoxville and back to Chattanooga. From this point of view I would open up the spring campaign, where the great General initiated his remarkable work of genius and daring. I could point you to the solider pursuing the enemy into the strongholds of Dalton, behind the stern, impassable features of Rocky Face.
Resaca, Adairsville, Cassville, Dallas, New Hop Church, Pickett's Mill, Pine Top, Lost Mountain, Kenesaw, Culp's Farm, Smyrna, Camp Ground, Peach Tree Creek, Atlanta, from so many points of view, and Jonesboro, are name of battle fields upon each of which a soldier's memory dwells. For upwards of a hundred days he scarcely rested from the conflict. He skirmished over rocks, hills, and mountains; through mud, streams and forests. For hundreds of miles he gave his aid to dig that endless chain of entrenchments which compassed everyone of the enemy's fortified positions. He companies with those who combatted the obstinate foe on the front and on the flanks of those mountain fastnesses which the enemy had deemed impregnable, and he had a right at least to echo the sentiment of his indefatigable leader, "Atlanta is ours, and fairly won." Could you now have patience to turn back with him and fight these battles over again, behold his communications cut, his railroad destroyed for miles, and miles; enter the bloody fight of Alatoona, follow him through the obstructed gaps of the mountains into Alabama, you would thank God for giving him a stout heart and an unflinching faith in a just and noble cause, Weary and worn, he reposed at Atlanta, on his return, but one single night, when he commenced the memorable march toward Savannah.
The soldier has become a veteran; he can march all day with his musket, his knapsack, his cartridge-box, his haversack and canteen upon his person; his muscles have become large and rigid, so that what was once extremely difficult he now accomplishes with graceful ease. This fact must be borne in mind when studying the soldiers' marches through Georgia and the Carolinas.
The enemy burned every bridge across stream after stream; the rivers, bordered with swamps---for example, the Ocmulgee, the Oconee, and the Ogechee---were defended at every crossing. That they were passed at all by our forces, is due to the cheerful, fearless, indomitable private soldier. Oh that you had seen him, as I have, wading creeks a half mile in width, and water waist deep, under fire, pressing on through wide swamps, without one faltering step, charging in line up on the most formidable works, which were well defended! You could then appreciate him and what he has accomplished as I do. You could then feel the poignant sorrow that I have always felt when I saw him fall bleeding to the earth.
I must now leave the soldier to tell his own tale amongst the people, of his bold, bloody work at McAllister, against the torpedoes, abattis, artillery, and musketry; of his privations at Savannah; of his struggles through the swamps, quicksands, and over the broad rivers of the Carolinas; of the fights, fires, explosions, doubts, and triumphs suggested by Griswoldville, Rivers' and Binnaker's bridges, Orangeburg, Conagree creek, Columbia, Cheraw, Fayettesville, Averysboro, and Bentonville. I will leave him to tell to yourselves and your children, how he felt and acted, how proud was his bearing, how elastic his step, as he marches in review before the President of the United States at Washington. I would do the soldier injustice not to say that there was one thing wanting to make his satisfaction complete, and that was the sight of the tall form of Abraham Lincoln, and the absence of that bitter recollection which he could not altogether exclude from his heart---that he had died by the hand of a traitor assassin.
I have given you only glimpses of the American soldier, as I have seen him. To feel the full force of what he has done and suffered, you should have accompanied him for the last four years. You should have stood upon the battle fields during and after the struggles; and you should have completed your observation in the army hospitals, and upon the countless grounds peopled with the dead. The maimed bodies, the multitude of graves, the historic fields, the monumental stones like this we are laying to-day, after all are only meager memorials of the soldiers' work. God grant that what he planted, nourished, and has now preserved by his blood---I mean American liberty---may be a plant dear to us as the apple of the eye, and that its growth may not be hindered till its roots are firmly set in every State of this Union, and till the full fruition of its blessed fruit is realized by men of every name, color and description, in this broad land.
Now, as I raise my eyes and behold the place where my friend and trusted commander, General Reynolds, fell, let me add my own testimonial to that of others, that we lost in him a true patriot, a true man, a complete General, and a thorough soldier. Upon him, and the others who died here for their country, let there never cease to descend the most earnest benediction of every American heart.
Let me congratulate this noble Keystone State that it was able to furnish such tried and able men as Reynolds who fell, and Meade who lived to guide us successfully through this wonderful and hotly contested battle.
In the midst of all conflicts, of all sorrows and triumphs, let us never for an instant forget that there is a God in heaven whose arm is strong to help, whose balm is sweet to assuage every pain, and whose love embraces all joy. To Him, then, let us look in gratitude and praise that it has been His will so greatly to bless our nation; and may this Monument ever remind us and our posterity, in view of the fact that we prevailed against our enemies "that righteousness exalteth a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people."
Governor of Pennsylvania.
The programme for the exercises of the occasion having been fulfilled, calls were made by all the people present for Governor Curtin, who spoke in substance as follows:
Having learned last week that my name occurred on the programme for the ceremonies of this occasion, I immediately asked that it should be omitted. There did not seem to be time for such preparation as would be proper for a ceremonial like this. I am deeply grateful for your hearty and enthusiastic request that I should be heard, and I will draw upon the inspirations of the time and the place, the connection between the event and this Sabbath day of American Freedom, and the hallowed precincts within which we all stand.
It would seem to be proper for me to express the thanks of the people of Pennsylvania to the citizens of the United States, who join with us to-day, and who have hitherto contributed their influence and means to the erection of this place of sepulture for the remains of those who perished in the grate battles of Gettysburg, and who this day surround the foundation-stone of a monument to their memory. We thank the citizens of the eighteen States who have given valuable and voluntary service, as trustees of the association, representing their respective States. We thank the people who have come up here in multitudes to participate in these solemnities. We thank that patriotic and benevolent brotherhood, so well represented here to-day but its chiefs, for their ancient rites and ceremonies, for their words of fraternity and love, contributed and pronounced upon the corner-stone of this structure, which is to be the Monument of the devotion and fidelity to country of their brothers and ours. And we are fortunate in having here with us, my fellow-citizens, the grate chief who commanded the historic Army of the Potomac, on the signal day which has made his fame and that of his Army, forever illustrious in the annals of American history; and we express with one voice our thanks to him and his brave companions, so man of whom remain to surround him here, and honor us with their presence. But more than all, my fellow-citizens, let us all unite in our expressions of gratitude to the sublime heroism and unselfish patriotism of the private soldiers of the Republic; for to them, above all others, we owe the safety of our free Government, and the return of the blessings of peace and tranquility to our distressed country. I could not but feel the unselfishness of the words of the chosen orator of the day; and the armless sleeve of the maimed General, seemed of itself eloquent, when her forgot the statesmen and generals of the war, and gave credit to the private soldier for all the glories which now surround the blood-stained, but forever stable, institutions of American liberty.
Our Monument should be the choicest work of art on this continent; it should be made beautiful and strong. This place will forever be attractive; the statesman can here meditate on the sacrifices made for liberty and civilization; the soldier can study the faultless plan of battle; and all can count here, the cost to this generation of maintaining the principles of freedom, transmitted to us from our ancestors. But no work of art can express our feelings of gratitude for the soldier of the Republic, living or dead; he has his memory enshrined in the hearts of a grateful people,---"there is as monument that needs no scroll."
But why should I speak to you to-day? It is but two years since the death-struggle of rebellion and treason filled this valley, now so peaceful with bloodshed and carnage; and the thunders of the artillery of that eventful strife will speak to man for his freedom and individuality, until time shall be no more.
Stronger than logic, sweeter than poetry, the orators of this occasion lie in their graves around youp; no living lips can reach your hearts as does the mute eloquence which comes up from the graves of the heroic dead. We are all of one family, my fellow-citizens, the living and the dead; those who lie around us shed benefactions upon us by the good they did; let us this day draw inspiration from their sublime virtues, and strive like them to be faithful to the Government they died to save.
We people of Pennsylvania give praise to God that it was of His mysterious providence that the blood of the people of eighteen States, here represented, should seal a covenant, made in the hour of the nation's deepest agony, that this great republic shall be for ever sacred to Union and fraternity, and pray Him that the lessons of Gettysburg shall sink deeply into the American heart.
The remarks of Governor Curtin were uttered with a fervor and earnestness that fastened the attention of the whole audience, and from their impassioned effect, the reporters failed to take them down fully as delivered.
The Benediction was pronounced by the Rev. D. T. Carnahan.
TO THE MEMORY OF OUR FALLEN HEROES AT THE BATTLE OF GETTYSBURG, PENNSYLVANIA.
(Sung by the National Union Musical Association of Baltimore)
Hark! A nation's sighs ascend;
Hark! A thousand voices blend;
From your thrones of glory bend,
Sons of liberty.
From each dark empurpled field,
Where your blood the Union sealed,
Spirit-tongues to-day have pealed
The soldier's requiem.
Where the smoke of battle curled,
Where the bolt of death was hurled,
Ye our starry flag unfurled,
Floating o'er the free.
In the dark and trying hour,
Putting forth your steady power,
Caused the Rebel hoards to cower,
Just two years ago.
Flashing sword and burning word,
Southrons felt and Southrons heard---
Plumed our country's banner-bird,
Just two years ago.
Martyred sons of trying days,
While the world resounds your praise,
Hear the songs your children raise,
Sons of liberty.