This section is from the book "Hill's Manual Of Social And Business Forms: A Guide To Correct Writing", by Thos. E. Hill. Also available from Amazon: Hill's Manual Of Social And Business Forms: The How-To-Do-Everything Book Of Victorian America.
By Gen. W. T. Sherman, at reunion of the Army of the Tennessee.
Fellow-Soldiers: I am glad to meet those here present on this day, and in this place. It is said that we could not meet on any day which is not the anniversary of some battle, but it was not accident that we hold this reunion of the Army of the Tennessee in St. Louis.
The day was chosen to do honor to those who took part in the capture of Camp Jackson in the suburbs of St. Louis. We have malice toward none, and charity to all. Forgiving the past, but not forgetting it, we will cherish the memories of the war forever. Each year diminishes the members of our society, but not the glorious memories of the civil war of 1861-65; beneath this we have the kindliest feelings toward all. I am glad to see this hall filled with faces that come back to me as plainly as when we parted at Raleigh.
Mayor's Address of Welcome to Secretary of War.
Sir: In extending to you the hospitalities of this city, its municipal authorities and citizens unite in offering you a hearty welcome, worthy not only of the high position which you hold in the government of this nation, but of the respect and admiration that we cherish for your private character.
We welcome you as the chief of one of the most important depart ments at the National Capital - a department upon which the integrity and defense of our country greatly depend.
We claim for our city a population of 500,000 people, with a large mercantile and manufacturing business, which it will be our pleasure to exhibit to you as fully as your inclination and opportunity may demand.
We have those among us who are deeply interested in the higher branches of literature, art and science, whom we would like to present to you as worthy representatives of the culture of our city.
In brief, Sir, whatever our city affords in all its social and industrial departments that may attract your special attention, we shall be pleased to submit it to your inspection and enjoyment. Our desire is to make your visit here so agreeable that you will take away with you none but the most gratifying assurances of our prosperity and hospitality, and that you may be induced to revisit us with delight.
Mr. Mayor and Gentlemen of---------------The warmth of your reception merits a grateful response in my bosom; for in becoming your guest, even for a day or two, I feel that while I minister to your pleasure, I reap the purest gratification on my part.
The past of your city is replete with historical, commercial, political and social associations, which possess great interest for me; and I see in her near future a wealth of augmented prosperity no less certain than deserved.
Since you accord to me the privilege of seeing for myself the works which make your city great, and of meeting those ladies and gentlemen who have wrought these triumphs of art, science and literature, I most confidently place myself in your hospitable hands.
I thank you, gentlemen, for your cordial greeting, and none the less heartily because I have reason to believe that your esteem attaches to my person no less than to the position which I hold as a public servant.
Defeated Candidate's Reply to a Serenade,
By Daniel Webster at the time of defeat for the candidacy of the presidency, at the Baltimore convention, 1852.
Fellow-Citizens: I thank you for your friendly and respectful call. I am very glad to see you. Some of you have been engaged in an arduous public duty at Baltimore, the object of your meeting being the selection of a fit person to be supported for the office of President of the United States. Others of you take an interest in the result of the deliberations of that assembly of Whigs. It so happened that my name among others was presented on the occasion; another candidate, however, was preferred. I have only to say, gentlemen, that the convention did, I doubt not, what it thought best, and exercised its discretion in the important matter committed to it. The result has caused me no personal feeling whatever, nor any change of conduct or purpose. What I have been, I am in principles and character; and what I am, I hope to continue to be. Circumstances or opponents may triumph over my fortunes, but they will not triumph over my temper or self-respect.
Gentlemen, this is a serene and beautiful night. Ten thousand thousand of the lights of heaven illuminate the firmament. They rule the night. A few hours hence their glory will be extinguished -
"Ye stars that glitter in the skies, And gaily dance before mine eyes, What are ye when the sun shall rise?"
Gentlemen, there is not one among you who will sleep better to-night than I shall. If I wake, I shall learn the hour from the constellations, and I shall rise in the morning, God willing, with the lark; and though the lark is a better songster than I am, yet he will not leave the dew and the daisies and spring up and greet the purpling east with a more blithe and jocund spirit than I possess. Gentlemen, I again repeat my thanks for this mark of respect, and commend you to the enjoyment of a quiet and satisfactory repose. May God bless you all.
Speech of Congratulation to a Candidate
For office, immediately after his nomination.
Sir: At the very outset of this political contest we hail you as our standard-bearer, congratulating you upon your harmonious, almost unanimous nomination for Congressman, and ourselves upon the prospect of being so ably represented in our national councils.
Since you first came among us you have, by your affability, industry in your profession, and public spirit, won deserved consideration at the hands of our citizens. Especially have your political principles, and the eloquent earnestness with which on several important occasions you have advocated them, produced the happiest effect in convincing the opposition of their errors and leading them to embrace the views of our own party. Your arguments in behalf of your principles have been unanswered, and where yon have not succeeded in converting our opponents, you have very thoroughly silenced them.
We feel that with you for our leader in this contest we are going straight on to victory, and that, when elected, you will ably advance our national and local interests. We feel that you will be no mere ornamental figure-head in the halls of Congress, but believe that on every question of importance your voice will be lifted and your vote cast in the advocacy of good government.
We are well-acquainted with your views of protection, financial retrenchment and reform, the Mormon question, and internal improvements, and we are satisfied that upon these and other issues you will capably represent your party and constituents. Trusting that our efforts to elect you may be successful, and we believe they will be, we pledge you our untiring and hearty support.
Gentlemen: The genuine heartiness of your congratulations, and the unanimity with which you have labored for my nomination, together with your pledges to support me throughout this campaign, serve to strengthen the determination which I had already formed, should I be elected, to be the consistent representative of my constituents.
The political contest upon which we are now entering will require us to exert all the energies we possess to overcome the political chicanery and vindictive animosity of our opponents; but I assure you that, as your leader, I will not flinch a moment, whatever the opposition to our success may be. If "eternal vigilance is the price of liberty," like---------'s detectives, our motto should be, "we never sleep!" Money and trickery will confront us on every hand; but when