Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 36.djvu/89

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The Virginia Convention of 1788.

"Lull'd in the countless chambers of the brain.
Our thoughts are link'd by many a hidden chain;
Awake but one, and lo, what myriads rise.
Each stamps its image as the other flies!"

Of that vast host that followed the fortunes of the Confederacy, the ranks are thinning daily. All that the survivors have left are their memories and their monuments. Our memories and their monuments. Our memories perish with us, but our monuments we bequeath to our descendants as a perpetual legacy to commemorate sacrifices made to principles that never die, a cause that is imperishable—constitutional government and liberty for which our forefathers contended in the Convention of 1788 and for which their descendants fought in '61-'65.

It is conceded that our banner is forever furled, but whilst the "Stars and Bars" are a cherished memory "Old Glory"' is a living reality. Whilst "Dixie"' and "Virginia" still make our hearts throb, and, mayhap our eye to moisten, "America" and the "Star Spangled Banner" stir our pulses in patriotic beats.

It was worth the shedding of much blood to have evolved such characters as Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson and to have proven to the world the valor of a nation.

God has given us a great country, a priceless heritage; He has clothed us with corresponding duties and responsibilities. Our freedom, happiness and prosperity will endure so long as we are a God-fearing and a deserving people.

In a spirit of patriotic devotion let us exclaim—

"Great God, we thank Thee for this hour,
This bounteous birthland of the free,
Where wanderers from afar may come
And breath the air of liberty!


"Still may her flowers untrampled spring;
Her harvest wave, her cities rise,
And yet, till Time shall fold his wing
Remain Earth's loveliest paradise."