Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 26.djvu/314
304 Southern Historical Society Papers.
Nearly an hour was spent at the Home, and the party returned to the city, driving at once to the Woman's Club.
From 2 to 3 o'clock yesterday afternoon General Wheeler was tendered a reception and luncheon by the Woman's Club, and prac- tically all the members embraced the opportunity to meet the old hero. It was thought that i o'clock was the hour set, and before that time the room began to fill. Upon General Wheeler's arrival with his escort Major Thomas Brander, Captains Laughton and Lamb, Colonels Cutshaw and Cussons, and Judge DeArmond they were crowded. Governor Tyler was the first to welcome him, and he was immediately conducted into the parlor, where the Reception Committee were in waiting. These were the officers of the club Mrs. L. L. Lev/is, Mrs. Thomas, Misses Guillaume, Jane Ruther- foord, and Mrs. J. B. Halyburton.
In a graceful speech Mrs. Lewis introduced the General, referring happily to the distinction which made the introduction unnecessary.
General Wheeler then in a brief address paid a fine tribute to woman. He had not anticipated that he would be asked to make a speech, but had thought he would simply have the pleasure of meet- ing the ladies of the club.
HIS TRIBUTE TO WOMAN.
He then referred to the effect of culture in women as greater or rather more subtle than in men, and said that perhaps it would con- vey his meaning more clearly, if he said that the difference seemed like the difference between the effect of the finest polish possible to marble, and that possible to common stone. He had no words in which to express his sense of women's power in the world. The press of the country in its kind and generous reference to the Amer- can soldiers, in the late war, has spoken of victory as attributable to " the men behind the guns." He wished to qualify that, and say that victory was due, in large measure, to the "women behind the men behind the guns. " (Loud applause.) He cited a number of instances to prove the courage of woman in times when death was the almost certain end. It remained a fact, said he, that men boasted of courage and women of cowardice, yet in time of peril the latter invariable proved their superiority in the former sterling virtue. (Applause.) He referred to the faithful and fearless ministry of women in times of fatal pestilence, and, in conclusion, said that in