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We are thankful that God gave to Abraham Lincoln the decision and the wisdom and grace to issue that proclamation, which stands high above all other papers which have been penned by uninspired men.-Bishop Matthew Simpson.
Lincoln's occupying the chair of State was a triumph of the good sense of mankind and of the public conscience. He grew according to the need, and as the problem grew, so did his comprehension of it.—Ralph Waldo Emerson,
Lincoln's nature was deeply religious but he belonged to no denomination; he had faith in the eternal justice and boundless mercy of Providence, and made the golden rule of Christ his practical creed.Colonel John G. Nicolay.
No other name has such electric power on every true heart, from Maine to Mexico, as the name of Lincoln. If Washington is the most revered, Lincoln is the best loved man that ever trod this continent.-Rev. Dr. Cuyler.
The true representative of this continent; an entirely public man; father of his country; the pulse of twenty millions throbbing in his heart, the thought of their minds articulated by his tongue.Ralph Waldo Emerson.
The martyr of liberty, the emancipator of a race, the savior of the only free government among men, may be buried from human sight, but his deeds will live in human gratitude forever.-President William McKinley.
Of all the men that I ever met, he seemed to possess more of the elements of greatness combined with goodness, than any other. -Gen. W. T. Sherman.
The purest of men, the wisest of statesmen, the most sincere and devoted patriot, the loveliest character of American statesmen.-Charles Foster.
The purity of his patriotism inspired him with the wisdom of a statesman and the courage of a martyr.-Stanley Matthews.
I have found that nothing is so certain to arouse an audience as to introduce the name of Abraham Lincoln.—Rev. Newman Hall, D.D.
He was a true believer in the divinity of the rights of man as man, the civil as well as the religious hope of the race. Sidney Dyer.
He was the patriot who was ever willing to make personal sacrifices for his patriotism.--Abram S. Hewitt.
His fame will grow brighter as time passes and his great work is better understood.—General Ulysses S. Grant.
The West spoke to the East, pleading for human rights as declared by our Fathers.-Charles Sumner.
Freedom's great high-priest, who set apart his life, while others sought but gold or bread.-T. C. Pease.
His career closed at a moment when its dramatic unity was complete.—Governor John A. Andrew.
Lincoln was the purest, the most generous, the most magnanimous of men.-Gen. W. T. Sherman.
Plain, honest, prudent man,--safe in council, wise in action, pure in purpose.—John C. New.
Washington was the father, and Lincoln the savior of his country.-Henry L. Dawes.
His constant thought was his country and how to serve it.Charles Sumner.
The most perfect ruler of men the world had ever seen.-Edwin M. Stanton.
He belongs to the ages. Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton.
VIRGINIA CARVEL AND PRESIDENT LINCOLN.
[From "The Crisis.")
(Virginia Carvel, a beautiful and high-spirited girl and an uncompromising Confederate, whose father, once wealthy, had lost his property and was finally killed fighting for the South, had come to Washington to beg President Lincoln for the life of Clarence Colfax, whom General Sherman had arrested as a spy. Virginia's childish love for Colfax had given way to genuine love for Stephen Brice, a Northerner, who before the war had settled in her city and who now as member of Sherman's staff was also in Washington.]
IRGINIA'S spirits sank as she entered the anteroom, full
of all sorts of people-politicians, prosperous and seedy; women, officers, and a one-armed soldier sitting in the corner. She walked directly to the doorkeeper.
“Can we see the President ?"
“Then you'll have to wait your turn. It's slow work waiting your turn, there's so many governors and generals and senators.”
"Oh, can't you do something? It's a matter of life and death. I must see him.”
“You're sure, Miss, it's life and death? Orders are very strict, but the President told me to give precedence to cases when life was in question. Wait a minute, Miss, I'll see what I can do for you. Give me your name.”
In a little while the heavy door opened, the doorkeeper slipped into the room and said, “The President will see you.”
Virginia swept in alone and the door closed softly after her. The room was big, and there were maps on the table with pins sticking in them. She saw that much, and then—could this fantastically tall, stooping figure before her be that of the President of the United States ? She stopped, as from the shock he gave her. The lean, yellow face with the mask-like lines all up and down, the unkempt, tousled hair, the beard—why, he was a hundred times more ridiculous than his caricatures. He might have stood for many of the poor white-trash farmers she had seen in Kentucky, save for the long black coat.
“Is—is this Mr. Lincoln ?"
He bowed and smiled down at her. Somehow, that smile changed his face a little. "I guess I'll have to own up."
“My name is Virginia Carvel. I have come all the way from St. Louis to see you."
“Miss Carvel, I have rarely been so flattered in my life. I-I hope I have not disappointed you.”
Virginia was angry, her eyes flashed as she cried: "Oh, you haven't, because I am what you would call a rebel.”
The mirth in the dark corners of his eyes disturbed her more and more; and then she saw that the President was laughing. “And have you a better name for it, Miss Carvel? Because I am searching for a better name—just now."
She was sternly silent; she tapped her foot on the carpet. What manner of man was this?
“Won't you sit down?” the President said, kindly. "You must be tired after your journey.”
“No, thank you; I think I can say what I have come to say better standing."
“Well, that's not strange. I'm that way, too. The words seem to come out better. That reminds me of a story they tell about General Buck Tanner. Ever heard of Buck, Miss Carvel? No? Well, Buck was a character. He got his title in the Mormon war. One day the boys asked him to make a speech. The General was a little uneasy. “I'm all right when I get standing up, Liza,' he said to his wife. “Then the words come right along. Only trouble is they come too cussed fast. How'm I going to stop 'em when I want to?' 'Well, I du declare, Buck,' said she,
'I give you credit for some sense. All you've got to do is to set down. That'll end it, I reckon."
The President had told this so comically that Virginia was forced to laugh, and she immediately hated herself. A man who could joke at such a time certainly could not feel the cares and responsibilities of his office. He should have been a comedian. And yet this was the President who had conducted the war, whose generals had conquered the Confederacy. And she was come to ask him a favor. Virginia swallowed her pride.
“Mr. Lincoln, I have come to talk to you about my cousin, Colonel Clarence Colfax.”
“I shall be happy to talk to you about your cousin, Colonel Colfax, Miss Carvel. Is he your third or fourth cousin ?" “He's
first cousin.” "Is he in the city?” [Innocently.] "Why didn't he come with
"Oh, haven't you heard? He is Clarence Colfax, of St. Louis, now Colonel in the army of the Confederate States."
[Tossing her head in exasperation.] "In General Joseph Johnston's army.
But now—now he has been arrested as a spy by General Sherman."
“That's too bad.”
“Oh, no, he doesn't. You don't know how brave he is! He floated down the Mississippi on a leg, out of Vicksburg, and brought back thousands and thousands of percussion-caps. He rowed across the river when the Yankee fleet was going down, and set fire to De Soto so that they could see to shoot."
"Well, that's a good starter.” [Thoughtfully.] "Miss Carvel,” said he, “that argument reminds me of a story about a man I used to know in the old days in Illinois. His name was McNeill, and he was a lawyer. One day he was defending a prisoner for assault and battery before Judge Drake. “Judge,' says McNeill,