July 20, 1870

Wilmington, Ohio


We need not overlook the soldier.  A fortnight ago, when we celebrated the Fourth of July, all was peaceful.  Halcyon seas, clear skies, favoring gales.  No murmur, no sinister threatenings anywhere.  Now, wherever on earth the wires are stretched, the faces of men are bent forward eager to catch the first rumbling of the great battles that are to reconstruct the map of Europe-perhaps the map of the world!  Battles that are perhaps to overturn thrones and destroy dynasties that were deemed settled for centuries.  Our policy, our purpose, our wish is to be neutral, to keep out of the maelstrom.  But we have sympathies, we have opinions.  During our great conflict for liberty and nationality, we had many enemies and few friends in Europe.  But from first to last the German people and the German government sympathized with us and were our friends.  We reciprocate today their feelings.