Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 38.djvu/74
62 Southern Historical Society Papers.
[Letter of Captain S. E. Morgan, with the pen-and-ink copy for the Virginia Committee. — Mrs. J. Enders Robinson.]
June 28, 1907. Dear Virginia :
I went up to "Cabin John Bridge" (Aqueduct) and made a literal transcript of the inscription on the tablet. The above is an exact copy — the words on each line being exactly as written. The space to which the hand points marked thus is where the name of Jefferson Davis was inscribed and subse- quently erased. It is entirely obliterated. You will observe there is not a punctuation mark on the tablet.
A casual observer, not knowing the facts in the case, would be perplexed to know whether Franklin Pierce was President or Secretary of War. It would take a shrewd one to translate into plain English what is left of the fourth line — "Building A. D. 1861." Upon the whole, it may be considered a queer in- scription utterly unworthy to have Mr. Davis' name upon it. The most charitable conclusion is, that the inscription was com- posed by some one whose wits were not in working order. As to the erasure of Mr. Davis' name, I would say, "The greatest government the world ever saw" (not my words) then and there, actuated by the meanest spirit that ever influenced human heart, stooped to do the littlest act recorded in the "annals of time."
Your affectionate brother,
S. E. Morgan.
[The blank space in the tablet is now so well known it is unnecessary to give the "literal copy" made by Capt. Morgan. — Editor's note.]
[From Charleston News and Courier, July 20, 1907. J
SOME TRUTHS OF HISTORY.
The Name at Cabin John Bridge — A Great South Carolina Paper Advises That No Change Be Made.
When Jefferson Davis was Secretary of War of the United States — and it is generally admitted that the United States have