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[299] has a friend. That star has set in blood, but yet in glory. That army is now of the past. The banners trail, but not with ignominy. No stain blots their escutcheons. No blush can tinge your cheeks, as you proudly announce that you have a part in the history of the Army of Northern Virginia.

My comrades, we have borne together the same hardships; we have shared the same dangers; we have rejoiced over the same victories. Your trials, your patience have excited sympathy and admiration, and I have borne willing witness to your bravery, and it is with a heart full of grateful emotions for your services and ready obedience that I take leave of you. May the future of each one be as happy as your past career has been brilliant, and may no cloud ever dim the brightness of your fame. The past rises before me in its illimitable grandeur. Its memories are part of the life of each one of us. But it is all over now. Yet, though the sad dark veil of defeat is over us, fear not the future, but meet it with manly hearts. You carry to your homes the heartfelt wishes of your General for your prosperity. My comrades, farewell!

R. F. Hoke, Major General.

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