Comrades, it is with sincere pleasure I arise to respond to this toast, “The 5th Maine.” However poorly I may do it I shall always feel that I have been honored by my comrades in selecting me for this pleasant duty. There has been a close fraternal feeling, amounting to a strong tie, existing between the 5th Maine and the 121st New York since we were brigaded together in September, 1862. It was cemented in the mingled blood of the two regiments as we went side by side, usually on the front line, as we passed through the successive campaigns of the war. The history of one is the history of the other, except that the 5th Maine commenced several months earlier, making a grand beginning, while the 121st continued on helping make history for the brigade, with an equally grand ending; both returning to private life with the highest achievements of honor, which was most pathetically shown by the thinned ranks of both returned regiments.
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