crowded in the street, thronging every balcony and looking out from every window around the square.
Honor had been shown for the standard.
Now, honor was to be shown to the memory of Washington
It had been decided, in this year of the secession of the State
, to prove that in leaving the Union Louisiana
had not turned her queenly back upon its greatest man. Secession had solidified into fact.
By way of contrast, it demanded the celebration of a national holiday.
The celebration was to be on February 22, 1861, which the authorities had resolved to make by day as imposing in numbers as, in the details, it should suggest war. Of the muster of the militia there is space only to say that the military display was the largest that had been seen in New Orleans since the day Andrew Jackson
, victor, rode in from Chalmette
The parade brought ease of mind to the average citizen and convinced the line of marchers of their own certainty of resistance to oppression.
The 22d was made an occasion for the presentation of flags.
Hon. Chas. M. Conrad
, ex-United States secretary of war
, gave, in the name of the ladies, a flag to the Crescent Rifles. Hon. J. P. Benjamin
, of the silver tongue, left his place in the Senate to become the sponsor of other ladies for a magnificent flag to the Washington Artillery.
As the night fell the illumination—made a special feature by merchants and citizens alike—shot into the air golden rays.
Every variety of transparency, every ingenuity of device, every trick of radiance was caught at to emphasize the main thought.
standing —seated—Washington in uniform—in perruque and court dress-Washington everywhere honored, with strong lights enhancing the majesty of his figure.
A band of musicians—good, since they were the orchestra of the French Opera
on Orleans street—preceded a group of men, young when the century had fourteen years to its credit.
On the banners of this group were inscribed the words, ‘Veterans of 1814-15.’