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[198] was smoke of camp fires, there; and across the green slopes red clay intrenchments frowned along the fords. Far beyond to the South lay home, and his eyes turned there.

What is this he sees? Artillery withdrawn from the fords? Going in battery on the hills? What harm can it do the enemy there? Soon flash out puffs of smoke, followed by the boom of gun after gun. Then he hears breaking in on the roar, the strains of Dixie, and both drowned by yells fiercer than of men in fight. Then, challenging the gladness of the guns and cheers, as their echoes die away, ring out the martial burst of the ‘Marsellaise.’ Then the roar of human voices hushes; and over the distance steals on his ear the sounds of ‘Annie Laurie,’ and all the bands, with golden tongue, pour out ‘Home, Sweet Home.’

When he lifts his wet eyes again, all is bustle and stir. The wagon trains are packing and moving. Battalion after battalion in gray, with shining steel and blood red flags, breaks from the battle line, and disappears over the hills. Every head of column is turned southward. The hosts in blue are folding their tents, and marching beyond the Blue Ridge.

All the beauty and worth of Virginia await the army at Richmond. Now, the cabinet and congress are standing at the foot of Washington's monument, but the President sits his horse under the spires of St. Paul. The fences around the capitol have been removed. Thousands of lovely women crowd the grounds. The signal for the great review is the firing of the heavy guns on the James; and while the streets yet tremble the band strikes up as the column, with Lee at its head, comes in sight, and when he and the President return salutes, the majestic voice of thousands of freemen, grander than the roar of ocean in storm, sends up one long, unbroken, triumphant hallelujah to the skies. Even the bronze figure looking down from the top of the monument, seems, for the moment, to take on the spirit of the immortal Washington. Pale and careworn, but erect, majestic and triumphant, the President, with Lee by his side, sits his horse, and for hours watches that proud array of ‘tattered jackets and bright muskets,’ and the red flutter of battle smoked flags. The sun sets. The moon rises, gilding anew the statures on the monument, and flooding through the trees, in golden light, lends its own beauty and softness to the mothers and maidens, who linger until the last battalion passes out of sound and sight.

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