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[262] British and Foreign Bible Society, gave him a hearty welcome, and invited him to make an address to the society in explanation of the object of his mission. The result was a free grant of 10,000 Bibles, 50,000 Testaments, and 250,000 portions of the Scriptures, such as single Gospels, Epistles, the Psalms, and Proverbs bound in black glazed covers, with red edges and rounded corners, of a size most convenient for the soldiers' pockets. The value of the donation was £ 4,000. Dr. Hoge remained during the winter in London, superintending the shipment of the books by the blockade runners to the Confederacy. He also obtained a large supply of miscellaneous religious books adapted to camp life, which were sent over in the same manner, and though some of the vessels on which the books were transported were captured, at least three-fourths of the Bibles reached the Confederacy.

Dr. Hoge used to say that this splendid donation of the English Bible Society was the biggest fee he ever got for a speech, and that he reaped a rich reward on his return to Virginia in visiting the camps and hospitals and lines of battle seeing so many of the soldiers reading the little red-edged volumes.

It has been stated here that Dr. Hoge was thoroughly Southern in his allegiance. Endeared customs and familiar objects could but hold in his leal heart. It was in seemingly fixed surroundings, inevitable that he should hold relationship to that vexed element in national politics—the negro. He was a holder of slaves—most likely by inheritance. In apology, if it be so, for that in which the Virginian was simply an involuntary medium of Providence and benefaction, what follows may be admissible:

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Peyton Harrison Hoge (3)
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