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[29] honor for great distinction won in the coming battle awaited officers and men of his army. Every heart in our ranks was stirred by this announcement, and thousands of the youth and manhood of Louisiana and of her sister States, to whom it applied, vowed to themselves that the decoration should be theirs. Superior authority, however, revoked this noble order, and ever has there lingered in my heart regret that it did not prevail.

The feelings and aspirations of those far-off moments were easily revived with me when the grand organization of Southern women to which you belong made public its intention of conferring on Confederate veterans a decoration commemorative of their services and heroism. The Southern cross of honor, this noble purpose contemplated, then rose before me in all the splendor of a soldier's coveted reward for duty performed through four years of incessant struggle against overwhelming numbers, as a recognition of still more trying duties performed for our beloved southland in the darker days of reconstruction and since, as a shining pledge of the wearer's eternal devotion to the principles we had fought for, to the right we had so magnificently, so gloriously, and so unanimously upheld. And, crowning this cross, appeared to me that halo of beauty, of sentiment, of chivalry, the women of the South so naturally throw around everything touched with their inspiration. I hoped this honorable decoration might somehow come to be pinned over my heart. Little, however, did I then expect to be singled out so early in its distribution, to be selected by the enthusiastic president of the Louisiana Division of the United Daughters of the Confederacy, as the second Confederate to be favored by you, and to stand on your roll of decorated, next to the great divine and grand southern patriarch and patriot, the Rev. Dr. B. M. Palmer. You have done me more than honor. For this cross comes unsolicited, unexpected, from a source from which, above all others, I would have preferred to receive it—from the Confederate women of my beloved native city. From those women of whom I can never think without proud emotions; whose encouragement and blessings I carried with me to the war; whose fate it was so early to feel the enemy's yoke; whose spirit grew more unyielding in captivity; who, uncowed by force of brutality, in duress won the world's admiration by their unsurpassed devotion to the cause of the South, displaying Spartan virtues that will yet afford a theme to another Pericles, or wake to immortal verse the lyre of some Virgil to come.

Those devoted Confederate women of old New Orleans, some of

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