« 上一頁繼續 »
to let the acts and doings of the Ontario Regiment speak for me. I have the pleasure of introducing to you the Chaplain of the Thirty-third, the Rev. Mr. Cheney, who will address you more fully.”
He then introduced Chaplain Cheney, who addressed Mrs. Chesebro and the delegation accompanying her, as follows:
“I think that I hardly need an introduction to those who hail from Canandaigua; and although I might well wish that the part I now undertake to discharge, had been conferred upon one better able to do justice to the occasion and the theme, yet, belonging as I do by birth and early associations to Ontario County, the task is to me one of pleasantness. And when I strive, as I now do, to return most heartfelt acknowledgments to the ladies of Canandaigua for this token of interest and confidence in our Regiment, I only strive to utter the sentiment which fills every soldier's breast this moment.
"It is an old proverb, and one which has been more than once graven on the warrior's shield “NOT WORDS BUT DEEDS," and I would be mindful of the spirit of the saying; and yet I hazard nothing in assuring the patriotic women of Canandaigua that they shall never see the day when they will regret the confidence which they have placed in the men of the Thirty-third. It may be, that in the fortunes of war no opportunity will be given them of great distinction, and I cannot promise for them that under these colors they shall win bloody fields and CANANDAIGUA'S ILLUSTRIOUS SONS.
safe way. I.
That I a
achieve splendid victories. I cannot promise in their behalf, feats of arms which future poets shall sing, and future historians record; but I can, and I do here pledge them, never, in camp or in field, to bring disgrace on this banner, nor on the name 'ONTARIO' which its folds display. I cannot promise you a glorious and safe return of this Banner, but I think that I can, in behalf of every man in these ranks, declare that death shall be welcome sooner than its dishonor. Storms may disfigure it, shot may pierce and rend its silken folds, brave blood may wet and stain its blue and gold, but the men of the Ontario Regiment will guard it with their lives; and their arms shall be nerved, and their souls inspired, not only by the love of their imperilled country, but also by the remembrance of the confidence and expectation which the gift implies. They will guard it. They will fight for it, not only because it is entrusted to their keeping by loyal women, but also because it comes to them from that beautiful old town which never yet has been dishonored by a traitor-son, but which has been famous in all the land as the home of Spencer, and Howell, and Sibley, and Worden, and Granger, and others whose names are part of the history of our State and Country.
"Perhaps we do not appreciate the part that woman bears in every great struggle for national existence. We are too apt to consider all as achieved by the work and sacrifice of men. And yet, noble and heroic as they are who go forth to battle for the
right-not less noble and heroic are their loved ones, mothers, sisters, wives, who give them up in the hour of need, and who at home, without surrounding excitements to sustain them, without any prospect of renown to reward them, watch, labor and pray to the God of Hosts in behalf of that cause for which they have bravely but tearfully risked their heart's dearest treasures. Who can estimate the influence of loyal women in our country's present struggle? Not the less potent in that it is for the most part unobtrusive and beneath the surface; an influence manifested not in bloody smiting, but in humble labors to alleviate the necessities and miseries of war, in words and acts of inspiring encouragement.
“Bear, then, to the ladies of Canandaigua our heartfelt gratitude. Tell them that their trust shall not be dishonored. Tell them that their gift shall not be in vain, but that by its influence, cheering on our men to true and loyal heroism, it will be gratefully remembered and cherished as one of the powers and instrumentalities by which, we trust to God, that ere long from the rock-ribbed coast of Maine to the Keys of Florida,
The Star Spangled Banner in triumph shall wave,
O’er the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave.'" The Elmira Cornet Band then discoursed a patriotic air, after which the Regiment returned to the barracks and partook of a sumptuous repast, provided by the citizens of Elmira.
This beautiful banner, which has ever been the
TROOPS MOVING TO THE CAPITAL.
pride of the Regiment, was made of the finest blue silk, bearing upon one side the Coat-of-Arms of the State of New York, and on the reverse the Seal of the County of Ontario, adopted in 1790. Over this seal appeared in bold gilt letters, the words: “Ontario , County Volunteers.” Surmounting the staff was a highly finished carved Eagle, with spread pinions—the whole forming one of the most elegant battle-flags ever wrought by fair hands.
Six hours were allotted each day to drilling, though, owing to the absence of arms, the men were confined, during the entire time of sojourn at Elmira, to the rudimentary principles of the manual. Books, newspapers, and other reading material, purchased and contributed by various benevolent associations, whiled away many hours which would otherwise have hung heavily.
Meanwhile our forces were being massed on the Potomac, and the men became anxious to depart for the seat of war. They had enlisted to fight the rebels at once, and, unexperienced as they were in military matters, could not understand the necessity of devoting so much time to preparation. Not that they chafed under discipline, but longed to be up and at the miscreants who had dared to fire on their country's flag, and were then menacing its capital.
Friday, July 3d, the Regiment was drawn up in front of the barracks, and Captain Sitgreaves, a regular officer, proceeded to muster it by companies into the United States' service for two years, dating
from May 22d, the time at which it was organized.
All those who desired to do so, were permitted to visit their homes on the 4th, with the understanding that they should return immediately. Arms and equipments were for the first time furnished on the 6th and 7th, and preparations made for an immediate departure to Washington, via Harrisburg. A long train of freight and cattle cars were drawn up to receive the men, but Col. Taylor declined to “embark” his command in any such vehicles, and passenger cars were furnished in their stead.