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[152] who has been dead for a number of years, was a great and good man, and was highly esteemed by the President, who, it is said, desired him to become Governor of this State, to guide it in its return to the Union. After giving her friend the information sought, Mrs. Pickett goes on to say:

I have before me a letter from Mr. Lincoln, dated ‘February 22d, Springfield, Ill.,’ which, though a private letter, bespeaks his superlative greatness, his accurate perception, and the bent, even at that early period, of his wonderfully penetrating mind. ‘I have just told the folks here in Springfield,’ he said, ‘on this, the 110th anniversary of the birth of him whose name, mightiest in the cause of civil liberty—still mightiest in the cause of moral reformation—we mention in solemn awe, in naked, deathless splendor, that the only victory we can ever call complete will be that one which proclaims that there is not one slave or one drunkard on the face of God's green earth. Recruit for this victory.’ At the close of the letter he said: ‘Now, boy, on your march, don't you go and forget the old maxim, that “one drop of honey catches more flies than a thousand gallons of gall.” Load your musket with the maxim and smoke it in your pipe.’

Pickett remembered, for there was not a drop of gall in his whole life. He was the sweetest and the tenderest of natures, and no man was more beloved of men, women and children of every degree and station than the high-toned, chivalrous man, the peerless soldier, General George E. Pickett. The soldiers of both armies alike hold his name in reverence; and so modest was he withal, that in his as yet unpublished report of the battle of Gettysburg, the grandest charge ever made in the annals of any history, he, in his unselfishness and devotion to his soldiers, and freedom from personal ambition, gives all the credit, all the glory, all the honor of the charge to ‘my men, my brave Virginians,’ as he called the soldiers of his dear old division. In the grand unity of truth he gave to them all their dues, and in silence tempered with mercy the errors of others.

Pickett had the keenest sense of justice, the most sensitive consciousness of right, and the moral courage to do it. When General Grant, whose capacity for friendship has rarely been equalled, offered Pickett the marshalship of the State of Virginia, Pickett took counsel of his conscience and judgment, and, in thanking General Grant, said: ‘As high even as you are held in the hearts of your people, you cannot afford to do this thing for me, and as poor and as much in need as I am of it, I cannot afford to take it from you.’ And

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