Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 23.djvu/31
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[From The Slate Columbia. S. C., Sept. 10, 1895.)
HAMPTON AND BUTLER.
Some Pages of Heretofore Unwritten History.
A Paper read by Captain U. R. Brooks before a fleeting of Camp Hampton Confederate Veterans, at Columbia, 5. C., Sept. 6, 1895.
" History is a brilliant illustration of the past, and leads us into a charmed field of wonder and delight. It reflects the deeds of men, and throws its rays upon the just and unjust, and leads us upward and onward to that mention of facts bearing directly upon a brilliancy surrounding our every day life as it was and as it is.
"That brilliancy called history is pitiless; it has this strange and divine thing about it, that all light as it is, and because it is light, it often throws shadows over spots before luminous, it makes of the same man two different phantoms, and one attacks the other, and the darkness of the despot struggles with the lustre of the captain."
In the language of Wendell Phillips: " If I stood here to-night to tell you the story of Napoleon, I should take it from the lips of Frenchmen, who find no language rich enough to paint the great cap- tain of the nineteenth century. Were I to tell you the story of Washington, I should takje it from your hearts you who think no marble white enough on which to carve the name of the father of his country." I am about to tell you of one of the many battles which was planned, fought and won by our illustrious lieutenant- general, Wade Hampton, on the loth day of March, 1865 the charge on Kilpatrick's camp, twelve miles this side of Fayetteville, N. C. Hampton's plan of action was a masterpiece.
No historian will ever say of him what has been said of Welling- ton, that "Waterloo is a battle of the first class, won by a captain of the second." Hampton's brave men who dared to follow where he dared to lead saw no Waterloo, because that expressive word of defect was not written in their vocabulary.
Napoleon said that ' ' detail facts belong rather to the biography