Address of Gen. R. E. Colston. Before the Ladies' Memorial Association, at Wilmington, N. C., May 10, 1870.
This address was delivered nearly twenty four years ago when military rule and carpet-bag governments were still prevailing over the South, causing more bitter feeling than even the war itself. Since then, almost a quarter of a century has elapsed and has taught salutary lessons. We had already appreciated the value of the Northern soldiers, and we now understand the motives which impelled them to war from their point of view, motives just as honest, patriotic, and noble as ours. Prejudices on both sides have melted away, and there are now no better friends than those who fought each other in the blue and gray. Mr. Beecher's prophecy proved conspicuously false, and all the Southern land is now dotted with monuments, growing more numerous each year, erected to the memory of her fallen heroes. Peace has made us, in many respects, the most powerful nation in the world, and the most prosperous. We got rid of the incubus of slavery, which we would not otherwise have shaken off in more than a century. We shall always cherish the memories of our struggle, which was inevitable, and in which we acted our part honorably and gloriously; and now, looking to the future and realizing the magnificent destiny placed before us and our children as one people, with one country and one flag, we accept the verdict of Fate and say: It is well
Ladies of the Memorial Association and Fellow-Citizens .A beneficent Providence has mercifully decreed that Time shall be the great healer and consoler of almost every form of human woe. Five years ago our land was still reeling with the calamities