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Eloquent Peroration.--The following is the concluding passage of the address of Governor Andrew, to the Legislature of Massachusetts, delivered January eighth, 1864:

Gentlemen of the Senate and House of Representatives:
Several topics — among others, of the militia — omitted from this address, already long, can be better matured hereafter, should occasion demand their discussion. I must not omit to bear public testimony again to the efficient manner in which the recruitment of volunteers is conducted through the municipal governments. The work is brought directly home to the people. Led by their own local magistrates, it is patriotically done. Time, an element not usually understood, will enable them to fill our contingent. I can never express my sense of the sublime devotion to public duty I have witnessed in this people from my watch-tower of observation; nor the gratitude I owe for their indulgent consideration.

But the heart swells with unwonted emotion when we remember our sons and brothers, whose constant valor has sustained on the field, during nearly three years of war, the cause of our country, of civilization, and liberty. Our volunteers have represented Massachusetts, during the year just ended, on almost every field and in every department of the army where our flag has been unfurled. At Chancellorsville, Gettysburgh, Vicksburgh, Port Hudson, and Fort Wagner; at Chickamauga, Knoxville, and Chattanooga; under Hooker, and Meade, and Banks, and Gillmore, and Rosecrans, Burnside, and Grant; in every scene of danger and of duty; along the Atlantic, and the Gulf, on the Tennessee, the Cumberland, the Mississippi, and the Rio Grande, under Du Pont, and Dahlgren, and Foote, and Farragut, and Porter, the sons of Massachusetts have borne their part, and paid the debt of patriotism and valor. Ubiquitous as the stock they descend from, national in their opinions and universal in their sympathies, they have fought shoulder to shoulder with men of all sections and of every extraction. On the ocean, on the rivers, on the land, on the heights where they thundered down from the clouds of Lookout Mountain the defiance of the skies, they have graven with their swords a record imperishable.

The muse herself demands the lapse of silent years to soften, by the influence of time, her too keen and poignant realization of the scenes of war — the pathos, the heroism, the fierce joy, the grief of battle. But during ages to come she will brood over their memory; into the hearts of her consecrated priests will breathe the inspirations of lofty and undying beauty, sublimity, and truth, in all the glowing forms of speech, of literature, and plastic art. By the homely traditions of the fireside, by the head-stones in the churchyard, consecrated to those whose forms repose far off in rude graves by the Rappahannock, or sleep beneath the sea embalmed in the memories of succeeding generations of parents and children, the heroic dead will live on in immortal youth. By their names, their character, their service, their fate, their glory, they cannot fail:

They never fail who die
In a great cause. The block may soak their gore;
Their heads may sodden in the sun, their limbs
Be strung to city gates and castle walls;
But still their spirit walks abroad. Though years
Elapse and others share as dark a doom,
They but augment the deep and sweeping thoughts
Which overpower all others, and conduct
The world at last to freedom.

The edict of Nantes maintaining the religious liberty of the Huguenots gave lustre to the fame of Henry the Great, whose name will gild the pages of philosophic history after mankind may have forgotten the martial prowess and the white plume of Navarre. The great proclamation of liberty will lift the ruler who uttered it, our nation and our age, above all vulgar destiny.

The bell which rang out the Declaration of Independence has found at last a voice articulate, to “ pro-claim liberty throughout all the land and to all the inhabitants thereof.” It has been heard across oceans, and has modified the sentiments of cabinets and kings. The people of the old world have heard it, and their hearts stop to catch the last whisper of its echoes. The poor slave has heard it, and with bounding joy, tempered by the mystery of religion, he worships and adores. The waiting continent has heard it, and already foresees the fulfilled prophecy, when she will sit “redeemed, regenerated, and disenthralled by the genius of universal emancipation.”

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Rosecrans (1)
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Meade (1)
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U. S. Grant (1)
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January 8th, 1864 AD (1)
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