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‘ [147] not let us deceive ourselves,’ said Col. James Montgomery; a veteran Kansas guerilla, to the present writer, who had commented on the undersized and underfed men who had once been brought in as prisoners, in Florida. ‘There are no soldiers in the world more formidable,’ he added, ‘than those whom we have to encounter.’ Should this reunited nation ever be unfortunate enough to be entangled in a foreign war, there will be an inestimable value in the mutual respect and confidence which were fought out by both North and South upon the battlefield. It is an inadequate compensation for those four years of sorrow, yet it is something.

Xxvii. The return of the flags.

There occurred in Boston, at the end of the war, a ceremony which came the nearest attainable to a general review and reception of the surviving Massachusetts soldiers. It occurred on Dec. 22, 1865, the two hundred and forty-fifth anniversary of the landing of the pilgrims at Plymouth. It was called forth by the following orders proceeding from Governor Andrew:—

[General order no. 18.]

Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Headquarters, Boston, Dec. 13, 1865.
By General Order No. 94 of the War Department, issued May 15, 1865, volunteer regiments and batteries, on their return to their respective States, when mustered out and discharged, were to deposit their colors with the chief United States mustering officers, to be by them transferred to the governors of the States.

Since that time, the following Massachusetts regiments and batteries, having faithfully served their country to the end of the rebellion, returned home and been discharged, their colors have been received by Brevet Col. F. N. Clarke, U. S. A., chief mustering officer, viz.: 2d, 11th, 17th, 19th, 21st, 23d, 25th, 26th, 27th, 28th, 29th, 31st, 33d, 34th, 35th, 36th, 37th, 38th, 39th, 40th, 54th, 55th, 56th, 57th, 58th, 59th, 61st Regiments of Infantry, 1st Battalion Frontier Cavalry, 3d, 4th, 5th Regiments of Cavalry, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 11th, 15th, 16th Batteries Light Artillery, 1st, 2d, 3d, 4th regiments of Heavy Artillery.

On Friday, 22d instant (Forefathers' Day), the colors will be escorted from Colonel Clarke's headquarters, No. 2 Bulfinch Street, to the State House, where they will be formally received by His Excellency the Governor, and placed in the public archives of the Commonwealth, to be sacredly preserved forever, as grand emblems of the heroic services and patriotic devotion to liberty and union of one hundred and forty thousand of her dead and living sons.

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