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[302] loyalty of the Southern States is nowhere questioned. The sons of the men who carried many of these flags have entered the army of the United States and helped to fight its battles. Organizations of men who wore the blue as well as men who wore the gray, will be glad to have again in their keeping the ensigns under which they marched to victory or defeat. We think it will be a graceful act of the Congress to return these flags to the respective States, and we feel assured that it will tend to produce still more kindly feelings between the sections of our reunited country.

The Committee on Military Affairs are unanimous in recommending that the resolution be adopted.

The return of these flags sent a thrill of joy through the whole South. This feeling was voiced through the press, through the action of Confederate Camps, and through private letters. Many of these reached the representative who prepared and offered the resolution and will be preserved and handed down to his children's children.

The Southern States to-day hold no relics more precious to the gray-haired veterans than those shot-riddled, shell-torn, bloodstained banners which they followed through raining bullets and thundering cannon. No feature of this reunion brings such bitter, yet sweet memories, as does the sight of these flags waving beneath Southern skies once more.

The flag of the Stonewall Brigade, which accompanied these flags, was graciously sent by the Governor of this State to the command in Jefferson and Berkeley counties—the Alsace and Lorraine of the New World. You should have seen the survivors of that immortal band as they gathered around the stand at Shepherdstown, and with tears streaming down their cheeks, strain their eyes to behold again on that flag the name of Cross Keys and Port Republic and Winchester and Manassas and Cold Harbor and Malvern Hill, Fredericksburg and Chancellorsville. Then you should have seen the three thousand of another generation and heard the shouts of joy that rent the air as they pressed to the front and each side of the Grand stand to look upon the blood-stained banner under which their fathers had marched to victory or died in defending. Had you been at Louisville you would have seen a delegation of those old heroes carefully guarding that banner and showing it with pride and exultation to the members of our western army, who as they passed uncovered, said:

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