colored troops of the Eighteenth Corps was soon reached, and a scene now occurred which defies description.
They beheld for the first time the liberator of their race — the man who by a stroke of his pen had struck the shackles from the limbs of their fellow-bondmen and proclaimed liberty to the enslaved.
Always impressionable, the enthusiasm of the blacks now knew no limits.
They cheered, laughed, cried, sang hymns of praise, and shouted in their negro dialect, God bress Massa Linkum!
De Lord save Fader Abraham!
De day ob jubilee am come, shuah.
They crowded about him and fondled his horse; some of them kissed his hands, while others ran off crying in triumph to their comrades that they had touched his clothes.
The President rode with bared head; the tears had started to his eyes, and his voice was so broken by emotion that he could scarcely articulate the words of thanks and congratulation which he tried to speak to the humble and devoted men through whose ranks he rode.