Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 17.djvu/166
158 Southern Historical Society Papers
Atlanta, Mobile, Charleston, Savannah fall — the Confederacy is cut to pieces. Its fragments become countries with frontiers on skirmish lines and capitals on horseback.
Ports are sealed — the world and the South are parted. All the dearer seems the scant sky that hangs over her bleeding children.
On and on and on come the thickening masses of the North — brave men, bravely led, and ably commanded ; and as those of the South grow thinner, theirs grow stronger. Hope sinks ; despair stiffens courage.
Everything fails but manhood and womanhood. The woman cooks and weaves and works, nurses the stricken and buries her dead and cheers her living. The man stands to his gun behind Johnston, behind Lee. Petersburg and Richmond starve and bleed, and yet stand dauntless. And here amongst you — while the thunders shake the capitol and the window-panes of his home and the earth trembles — here stands Jefferson Davis, unshaken, untrembling, toiling to give bread to his armies and their kindred, toiling to hold up the failing arms of his veterans, unbelieving that Heaven could decree the fall of such a people.
At last the very fountains of nature fail. The exhausted South falls prone upon its shield.
LET HIM REST IN RICHMOND.
It is gone ! All gone ! Forever gone ! The Confederacy and its sons in gray have vanished ; and now at last, hoary with years, the Chieftain rests, his body mingling with the ashes of the brave which once quickened with a country* s holy passion
Hither let that body be borne by the old soldiers of the Confed- eracy. Here in Richmond, by the James, where was his war home, where his child is buried, where his armies were marshalled, where the Congress sat, where was the capitol, the arsenal, the citadel, the field of glory, and at last the tomb of the Confederacy — here let him be buried, and the land of Washington and Lee and Stonewall Jack- son will hold in sacred trust his memory and his ashes.
THE FUTURE WILL HONOR HIM.
The restless tides of humanity will rush hither and thither over the land of battles. The ages will sweep on, and
" Rift the hills, roll the waters, flash the lightnings, weigh the sun."