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 And now, officers and soldiers of the Washington Artillery, in the name of General Beauregard, under whose eyes you first went under fire, at Bull Run and Manassas, and—besides your brilliant achievements in fifty-six other battles and engagements—under whom you again distinguished yourselves, on the bloody field of Shiloh, with Hodgson, Slocomb, McVaught, Hewes, and Chalaron, and, later on, at Drewry's Bluff, with Eschleman, W. M. Owen, Richardson, Hero and Norcum, I have the honor to present to you this sacred emblem of Southern valor and patriotism. Its colors are yet as fresh as when it received the parting look of its fair maker. Its value is enhanced by the fact that the upper portion of its staff is made of a piece of the flag-staff of Fort Sumter, shot down by the Confederate gunners, in April, 1861. Unsullied though it be by the smoke of battle, it was, none the less, born in war, and the breeze first kissed it in the tented field. It is the genuine model of the glorious flag around which all of us fought, and so many of us bled, and so many of us fell. Colonel Richardson, I now intrust it to your hands. The Washington Artillery is worthy of it; it is, in every respect, worthy of the Washington Artillery. General Beauregard, who will ever regret his enforced absence from among you on this occasion, knows that it will be treasured and revered by you, and that it will find a fitting place among the many trophies and decorations which already adorn the walls of your vast armory. He trusts that, in the peaceful years succeeding the troublous era, over which we have just cast a backward glance, it will serve you and those under you as a touching reminder, not only of himself, your fast friend and former commander, but also of her from whose love and devotion to a cause dear to us—then, now, and I say forever—it originally came.
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