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strength and character. Resistance to circumstance, true measure of man's worth, is recorded there. The austere virtues by Bryant to purest gold compared were fadelessly impressed. Resolution was written there by an invincible will. Deep engraven was his determination to achieve high purposes. No mark of dishonor marred its rugged grandeur. There is no line typifying failure.
High intelligence, strict integrity, and imposing personality are qualities which the public seldom fail to recognize. He was chosen chief executive of the State of Maine. His name stands undimmed in that galaxy of magnificent men. He came with exceptional equipment to the discharge of duty as a national lawmaker. Laurels gathered in other fields of endeavor are of little note in this House. Here is found equality of merit. Demonstrated capacity to do is the only rule of recognition. The pretender is denied preferment. This unyielding rule proved no bar to his progress. He had measured every upward step in life by that same standard. All his time and talent were devoted to his work.
He comprehended the broader questions of national policy, but neglected not the trying details of lesser concerns. He was faithful in all things; negligent in none. He was sound in judgment, safe in council, fearless in action. The character of his services in the House of Representatives has won for him the respect and admiration of his fellow-Members, and entitles him to enduring remembrance as a faithful and capable public servant. His life is a splendid illustration of the possibilities of young American manhood. Under our system of free institutions there are no heights of human achievement to which he may not aspire.
So near is grandeur to our dust,
So near is God to man,
The youth replies, I can!
Mr. SPEAKER: LLEWELLYN POWERS was my friend. We were associated in legislative work upon the Committee on the Territories, and in his service upon that committee he impressed upon its legislation the stamp of his mature judgment and experience.
He was born in Maine in 1836, and he loved the soil of his native State. His name will always have a place among Maine's most distinguished men, and to be among Maine's distinguished men is high honor.
He was county attorney, collector of customs, member of the Maine legislature, speaker of the Maine house of representatives, governor, and Representative in Congress.
With him faculty went with opportunity, and he was what the world calls a successful man-successful in business, suc: cessful in politics.
Whatever his hand found to do, he did it with his might, but at last his health failed, and one day he bade me good-by, stood for a moment watching reflectively the business of a busy session, which I think he had a premonition he was quitting forever, then went away out of it all.
The House of Representatives, to which he first came in 1876, and then again in 1901 to serve until his death, with its shifting membership, its varying types, its ambitions, and its failures, is not only representative politically and socially of our civilization, but it is a stage, typical of human life, across which some pass quickly, upon which some few linger, 'but from which most depart, having accomplished little of what they hoped for.
Here, as elsewhere, some showy talent frequently succeeds, while sober diligence seldom receives its due reward.
There are waits between acts; administrations come and go; new messages arrive from new Presidents; but the curtain is never finally rung down, and “when you and I behind the veil have passed," others will crowd upon our footsteps.
Every man arrives here more or less a legislative experiment, and any dream that he may have had about his work holding his name forever above “the flood of years” suffers a change.
His identity becomes merged with that of many others in connection with some policy which may or may not survive to become a part of history on which the ayes and noes were called.
Down on the Avenue a blear-eyed old man on sunshiny days sits in front of his secondhand book store, smoking his pipe, and waiting while the feculent dust of the street blows in, and we go by on our way to the Capitol on the hill to help to make more history to be sold at secondhand.
And some men have made great noise and vociferation here on the hill; some have even become famous, but the dust of the street will after a time blow over their works sold at secondhand, just as it has blown over the works of thousands who have gone before them.
But the curtain is never finally rung down here. When it is, there will be an end of popular government.
Out of the stress and rush and rivalry of this scene LLEWELLYN POWERS went the way of all flesh-prince, peasant, harlequin, and sage--beckoned by a hooded figure in the wings.
He had finished his work. Whether he was satisfied with it or not depends upon his ideals.
Few men are satisfied with what they accomplish. George Frederick Watts spoke of his paintings as “only studies for the picture that might have been."
If a man meditate much upon the universal frame of nature, the earth with men upon it—the divineness of the soul excepted—will not seem much other than an ant hill, where some ants carry corn and some carry their young, and all go to and fro, a little heap of dust.
Bacon's exception—“the divineness of the soul”—is the only element that makes the ant heap explainable. If the reason of life is that life shall reproduce itself, run its
and then die, then life is a tragedy, and the greater the intelligence, the greater the tragedy.
The acquisition of knowledge, the development of character under discipline of circumstance only serve to educate a keener consciousness of the stinginess of happiness and the opulence of misery.
But the soul idea gives purpose to existence and dignity to effort.
No philosophy will ever satisfy men which can not throw a plank across
If the hope of continued, conscious existence after death ever fades out of humanity, then the light will have gone out of the world; the deepest inspiration to right living will have gone out of human conduct, and human existence will have become a meaningless tragedy.
With that hope we are on a journey toward superlative issues.
With that hope we are as much in eternity now as we ever shall be, and every day is a part of the evolution of a persoliality being trained for a higher destiny.
That hope transforms Bacon's ant heap and glorifies human endeavor.
Mr. Bryce, in his American Commonwealth, says:
Sometimes, standing in the midst of a great American Commonwealth, one is startled by the thought of what might befall this huge yet delicate fabric of laws and commerce and social institutions were the foundations it has rested on to crumble away. Suppose that all these men ceased to believe there was any power above them, any future before them, anything in heaven or earth but what their senses told them of.
LLEWELLYN POWERS performed his duty to his State and to the Nation loyally and honestly. He was courageous, manly, loyal in his friendships, strong in his likes, strong in his dislikes, and never a waverer. He had keen zest in the pursuit of his business, the practice of his profession, and the performance of his political and official duties.
He died a manly, upright man who had used the talents given him to the best of his ability.