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Southern Historical Society Papers, Volume 25. (ed. Reverend J. William Jones), Sergeant Smith Prentiss and his career. (search)
entiss was in the flower of his forensic fame. He had not, at that time, mingled largely in federal politics. He had made but few enemies, and had not staled his presence, but was in all the freshness of his unmatched faculties. At this day it is difficult for anyone to appreciate the enthusiasm which greeted this gifted man, the admiration which was felt for him, and the affection which followed him. He was to Mississippi, in her youth, what Jenny Lind is to the musical world, or what Charles Fox, whom he resembled in many things, was to the Whig party of England in his day. Why he was so is not difficult to see. He was a type of his times, a representative of the qualities of the people, or rather of the better qualities of the wilder and more impetuous part of them. The proportion of young men, as in all new countries, was great, and the proportion of wild young men, was unfortunately, still greater. He had all those qualities which make us charitable to the character of Pr