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[170]

It has been alleged that he has a more serious weakness, which would be less pardonable in the eyes of the people. At various times during the war, malignant enemies charged that he was grossly intemperate in his habits; and since he became, by his acts, identified with the party which seeks to reap the just fruits of victory over a wicked rebellion, Copperhead presses have asserted, or meanly insinuated, the same charge. No allusion would be made here to such accusations but for the gross injustice which has been done him, in thus seeking to create a prejudice against him in the minds of a large number of people. It is sufficient to say, that those who know him best, who have been most intimately associated with him during the war and since, pronounce such charges utterly false; and that gentlemen, earnest in the cause of temperance, have satisfied themselves that there is no foundation for the assertions and insinuations derogatory to his character in this respect, but that he is a man whose temperance cannot justly be called in question. Such charges originated in personal or political enmity, and have been encouraged and circulated through total misapprehension of Grant's temperament and manner. They are the mean and malicious inventions of those who, during the war, hated him for his victories; those who have always sympathized with the rebels whom he conquered, or those who have supported the policy of the man who publicly disgraced the country when he became Vice-President. Narrow prejudice and ignorance, which are ever ready to misapprehend, have given credit and circulation to the libel; but it is hone the less a libel, unsupported by any evidence worthy of belief.

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U. S. Grant (1)
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