BANQUET IN HONOR OF MAJOR GENERAL GEORGE CROOK,
THE PHILLIPS HOUSE
July 13, 1865
I share fully in the hope and confidence that I think the people feel in President Johnson, and I share fully in the determination to sustain President Johnson in all acts which are for the nation's good. We know that he is a good and true man, and that he has been as earnest in his efforts to sustain the nation's integrity as any man. We can well rejoice tonight that we can drink a toast to the President of the United States. We can not talk about the glory of the country without being led into enthusiasm, and I feel tonight that were I to utter my heartfelt sentiments on the subject I should occupy too much of your time.
I remember well how I felt in my first fight in this war. There were two things occupying my mind as the battle opened. The first thought was, of course, of a personal character, of myself and those of mine at home, and the other was of those beautiful flags seen all over the battle-field, in the hands of brave men, who seemed to feel that whatever else might be done, those stars and stripes must ever be held up to the view. And I hoped then, with a swelling heart, that the sun might never shine upon those banners dishonored and this country dismembered, but that it might forever shine upon that glorious banner without one star obscured. And with the crowd of thoughts which rushed through my mind there was suggested then, in that dreadful hour, that great and good sentiment, so dear to every American heart, of Liberty and Union, now and forever; one and inseparable. And this ideas, born of true patriotism, had much to do in keeping up officers and men to do their duty, so that they might, like General Crook, camp even upon the skirmish line, to be found where the last shot was fired.
The old patriotic sentiments learned and spoken at the schools, had a great deal to do with the patriotism of the army.
He closed by proposing: "Vice Admiral Farragut, hero of the Navy."