Friday, February 15, 2013

150-years-ago -- HONOR TO GEN. MAGRUDER

January 28, 1863 
Maj. Gen. John Bankhead Magruder, perhaps
with the sword presented to him by the laides
of Houston.
(Cdv, blog author's collection)
                Our last issue having been issued while the ceremonies for the reception of Gen. Magruder were in progress, we could only give a brief notice of them.  We now copy from the [Houston]Telegraph the several addresses delivered, and regret, at the same time that Gen. Magruder's speech is not within our reach.
The introductory address was that by Dr. Wm. McCravan welcoming the General to our State.  He said: . . .
The people responded with three tremendous shouts for Magruder, and three more for his noble army.
The General replied in a few brief but telling sentences. . .
Miss Sydnor was led forward by Mr. Sorley, holding a beautiful sword in her hand crowned with a laurel wreath.  In the name of the ladies of Texas, Mr. Sorley addressed the General as follows:
General.—I have the honor to address you on behalf [of] the ladies of Texas, represented on this occasion by the committee of ladies now assembled to grace by their presence, and cheer by their smiles, this spontaneous offering of a grateful and gallant people, to a gallant and honored chief.
                . . .
The ladies of Texas, emulating their sisters in the other States of our loved Confederacy, have watched with eagerness and pride the march of our victorious hosts; and when, in the progress of the war, an unhappy reverse to our army has been announced, they have but nerved themselves the more heroically to make any and every sacrifice to retrieve the lost ground.  They heard long since, sir, of your chivalry and valor in the "Old Dominion;" and when cast down by the uncontested surrender of their beautiful Island City, they heard that Magruder, the dashing hero of the Peninsula was coming to take command in Texas, their hopes revived, their courage was reinspired.  Nobly, sir, have you fulfilled alike your duty to your country and their high hopes; and in the retaking of Galveston and the destruction of the Federal fleet, with means so apparently inadequate, save the indomitable courage of your gallant Texas troops, you have secured to yourself that reward so dear to the brave—the unbounded confidence and admiration of all Texas, in testimony of which, and as a souvenir, which they hope you will ever prize, alike for its sake as for the occasion which has induced it, they now present you, by the hands of one of the fairest and most accomplished of the daughters of Texas, this sword, the emblem of your office and your profession, relying with confidence that never will it be drawn save in the cause of freedom and humanity.—They feel assured, sir, in the language of another, that in your hands it will be endowed with three most excellent qualities—its hilt with Faith, its blade with Hope, and its point with Charity, teaching this important lesson, that having Faith in God and the justice of your cause, you may reasonably Hope for victory, and be always ready to extend the point of Charity to a conquered and fallen foe."
The General received the sword from the beautiful representative of the women of Texas, with a graceful bow, and acknowledged, with emotions of pride the compliment of the gift, declaring that the sword never should be drawn without cause, or sheathed without honor.
He then turned to the audience and gave them a glowing, thrilling speech. . .  

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