Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 27.djvu/132
124 Southern Historical Society Papers.
erected by him, " in testimony of a comrade's love," " To the Sol- diers of Florida."
In this beautiful and henceforth consecrated place, as the years pass away, may that granite column stand, and, a silent witness though it be, yet ever testify to all who come here, in behalf of de- votion to principle, patriotic valor and love of home and native land.
Acceptance of the monument in behalf of the State of Florida by Governor William D. Bloxham, who, being introduced, spoke as follows:
Mr. Chairman :
It becomes my pleasant task to accept, on behalf of the State, this monument, given by a warm-hearted and generous Florida soldier as a votive offering, that memory may forever garland the deeds of his brave comrades.
On many of the bloody fields in that gigantic struggle between the States, so eloquently pictured by the orator of the day, Florida gave her soldiery. In the thickest of the fight fell her splendid offi- cers and her private soldiers those unepauletted martyrs of liberty whose lives illustrated those excellences that sparkle brightest in duty's crown. This beautiful shaft with tongueless eloquence will forever tell that they live in fame if not in life, and that their names are written on memory's deathless scroll.
Behold the Confederate soldier! No earthly crown too brilliant to deck his brow; no monument too grand to perpetuate his memory.
Though many rest in unknown graves, their heroic virtues will forever peal from mountain top to mountain top, and swell along the valleys of the entire South,
Whose smallest rill and highest river Roll mingling with their fame forever.
It has been said that there was a stone in Bologna that, ever since the stars sang of creation's wonders, each day absorbed the brightest sunbeams from Heaven, and to-day gleams magnificently with those accumulated treasures of untold centuries. So as the years have rolled on, and the passions of the past allayed, and the rhetoric of hate drowned in the swelling tide of a united country and admiration for heroic deeds, the record of the Confederate soldier has grown