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[120] dipping to him in salute, those precious standards bullet-riddled, battle-stained, but remnants of their former selves, with scarcely enough left of them on which to imprint the names of the battles they had seen, his eyes once more kindled with the flames which had lighted them at Shiloh, on the heights of Chattanooga, amid the glories of Appomattox, and as those war-scarred veterans looked with uncovered heads and upturned faces for the last time upon the pallid features of their old chief, cheeks which had been bronzed by Southern suns and begrimed with powder were bathed in tears of manly grief. Soon they saw rising the hand which had so often pointed out to them the path of victory. He raised it slowly and painfully to his head in recognition of their salutations. The last of the columns had passed, the hand fell heavily by his side. It was his last military salute.


Lee on ‘traveller’

General Lee dictated the following description to his daughter Agnes at Lexington, Virginia, after the war, in response to an artist who had requested it:

If I were an artist like you I would draw a true picture of Traveller—representing his fine proportions, muscular figure, deep chest and short back, strong haunches, flat legs, small head, broad forehead, delicate ears, quick eye, small feet, and black mane and tail. Such a picture would inspire a poet, whose genius could then depict his worth and describe his endurance of toil, hunger, thirst, heat, cold, and the dangers and sufferings through which he passed. He could dilate upon his sagacity and affection, and his invariable response to every wish of his rider. He might even imagine his thoughts, through the long night marches and days of battle through which he has passed. But I am no artist; I can only say he is a Confederate gray. I purchased him in the mountains of Virginia in the autumn of 1861, and he has been my patient follower ever since. . . . You must know the comfort he is to me in my present retirement. . . . You can, I am sure, from what I have said, paint his portrait.

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