Page:American Boy's Life of William McKinley.djvu/11

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The life of William McKinley affords a shining example to all American boys of what honesty, perseverance, and a strict attention to duty can accomplish.

The twenty-fifth President of our Nation was born in a humble home, of humble parentage, and had to make his own way in life at an early age. When little more than a boy he taught school for a living, and at the age of eighteen he became a private in the army. He served through the whole of the great Civil War, and so faithful was he and so heroic that he became first a commissary sergeant, next a lieutenant, then a captain, and, finally, left the army a full-fledged major, twenty-two years old.

William McKinley could have remained in the army, and would undoubtedly have risen to a much higher rank had he done so. But this was against his mother's wish,