Standing beneath this serene sky, overlooking these broad fields now reposing from the labors of the waning year, the mighty Alleghenies dimly towering before us, the graves of our brethren beneath our feet, it is with hesitation that I raise my poor voice to break the eloquent silence of God and Nature. But the duty to which you have called me must be perfomed; - grant me, I pray you, your indulgence and your sympathy.


It was appointed by law in Athens, that the obsequies of the citizens who fell in battle should he performed at the public expense, and in the most honorable manner. Their bones were carefully gathered up from the funeral pyre, where their bodies were consumed, and brought home to the city. There, for three days before the interment, they lay in state, beneath tents of honor, to receive the votive offerings of friends and relatives'-flowers, weapons, precious omaments, painted vases, (wonders of art, which after two thousand years adorn the museums of modern Europe,)-the last tributes of surviving a&c- tion. Ten coffins of funeral cypress received the honorable deposit, one for each of the tribes of the city, and an eleventh in memory of the unrecognized, but not therefore unhonored, dead, and of those whose remains could not be recovered.'On the fourth day the mournful procession was formed; mothers, wives, sisters, daughters led the way, and to them it was permitted by the simplicity of ancient manners to utter aloud their lamentations for the beloved and the lost; the male relatives and friends of the deceased followed; citizens and strangers closed the train. Thus marshalled, they moved to the place of interment in that famous Ceramicus, the most beautiful suburb of Athens, which had been adorned by Cimon, the son of Miltiades, with walks and fountains and columns - whose groves were filled with altars, shrines, and temples -whose gardens were kept forever green by the streams from the neighboring hills, and shaded with the trees sacred to Minerva and coeval with the foundation of the city,- whose circuit enclosed

the olive Gmve of Academe,
plato's retirement, where the Attic bird
Trilled his thick-warbled note the summer long;
whose pathways gleamed with the monuments of the illustrious dead, the work of the most consummate masters that ever gave life to marble. There, beneath the over-arching plane-trees, upon a lofty stage erected for the purpose, it was ordained that a funeral oration should be pro nounced by some citizen of Athens, in the presence of the assembled multitude.

Such were the tokens of respect required to be paid at Athens to the memoy of those who had fallen in the cause of their country. For those alone who fell at Marathon a special honor was reserved. As the battle fought upon that immnortal field was distinguished from all others in Grecian histry for its influence over the fortunes of Hellas,- as it depended upon the event of tht day whether Greece should live, a glory and a light to all coming time, or should expire like the meteor of a moment; so the honors awarded to its martyr - heroes were such as were bestowed by Athens on no other occasion. They alone of all her sons were entombed upon the spot which they had forever rendered famous. Their names were inscribed upon ten pillars, erected upon the monumental tumulus which covered their ashes, (where after six hundred years, they were read by the traveler Pausanias,) and although the columns beneath the hand of time and barbaric violence, have long since disappeared, the venerable mound still marks the spot where they fought and fell -

That battlefield where Persia's victim horde
First bowed beneath the brunt of Hellas' sword.

And shall I, fellow citizens, who, after an interval of twenty- three centuries, a youthful pilgrim from the world unknown to ancient Greece, have wandered over that illustrious plain, ready to put off the shoes from off my feet, as one that stands on holy ground who have gazed with respectful emotion on the mound which still protects the dust of those who rolled back the tide of Persian invasion, and rescued the land of popular liberty, of letters, and of arts, from.the ruthless foe, stand unmoved over the graves of our dear brethren, who so lately, on three of the all-important days which decide a nation's history, days on whose issue it depended whether this august republi- can Union, founded by some of the wisest statesmen that ever lived, cemented with the blood of some of the purest patriots that ever died, should perish or endure rolled back the tide of an invasion, not less unprovoked, not less ruthless, than that which came to plant the dark banner of Asiatic despotism and slavery on the free soil of Greece?" Heaven forbid! And could I prove so insensible to every prompting of patriotic duty and affection, not only would you, fellow citizens, gath- ered, many of you from distant States, who have come to take part in these pious offices of gratitude you, respected fathers, brethren, ma. trons, sisters, who surround me cry out for shame, but the forms of brave and patriotic men who fill these honored graves would heave with indignation beneath the sod.

We have assembled, friends, fellow citizens, at the invitation of the Executive of the great central State of Pennsylvania, seconded by the Governors of seventeen other loyal States of the Union, to pay the last tribute of respect to the brave men, who, in the hard fought battles of the first, second and third days of July last, laid down their lives for the country on these hill sides and the plains before us, and whose remains have been gathered into the Cemetery which we consecrate this day. As my eye ranges over the fields whom sods were so lately moist ened by the blood of gallant and loyal men, I feel, as never before, how truly it was said of old, that it is sweet and becoming to die for one's country." I feel as never before, how justly, from the dawn of history to the present time, men have paid the homage of their gratitude and admiration to the memory of those ho nobly sacrificed their lives, that their fellow men may live in safety and in honor. And if this tribute were ever due, when, to whom, could it be more justly paid than to those whose last resting place we this day commend to the blessing of Heaven and of men?

For consider, my friends, what would have been the consequences to the country, to yourselves, and to all you hold dear, if those who sleep beneath our feet, and their gallant comrades who survive to serve their country on other fields of danger, had failed in their duty on those memorable days. Consider what, at this moment, would be the condi- tion of the United States, if that noble Army of the Potomac, instead of gallantly and for the second time beating back the tide of invasion from Maryland and Pennsylvania, had been itself driven from these well contested heights, thrown back in confusion on Baltimore, or trampled down, discomfited, scattered to the four winds. What, in that sad event, would have been the fate of the monumental city, of Harrisburg, of Philadelphia, of Washington, the capital of the Union, each and every one of which would have lain at the mercy of the enemy, accordingly as it might have pleased him, spurred by passion, flushed with victory, and confident of continued success, to direct his course? For this we must bear in mind, it is one of the great lessons of the war, indeed of every war, that it is impossible for a people without military organization, inhabiting the cities, towns, and villages of an open country, including, of course, the natural proportion of noncom- batants of either sex, and of every age, to withstand the inroad of a veteran army. What defence can be made by the inhabitants of villages mostly built of wood, of cities unprotected by walls, nay, by a popula tion of men, however high-toned and resolute, whose aged parents demand their care, whose wives and children are clustering about them against the charge of the war-horse whose neck is clothed with thun der gainst flying artillery and batteries of rifled cannon planted on every commanding eminence against the onset of trained veterans led by skilful chiefs?" No, my friends, army must be met by army, battery by battery, squadron by squadron; and the shock of organized thou sands must be encountered by the firm breasts and valiant arms of other thousands, as well organiwd and as skilfully led. It is no reproach, therefore, to the unarmed population of the country to say, that we owe it to the brave men who sleep in their beds of honor before us, and to their gallant surviving associates, not merely that your fertile fields, my friends of Pennsylvania and Maryland, were redeemed from the pres ence of the invader, but that your capitals were not given up to threat- ened plunder, perhaps laid in ashes, Washington seized by the enemy, and a blow struck at the heart of the nation.

Who that hears me has forgotten the thrill of joy that ran thmugh the country on the 4th of July - auspicious day for the glorious tidings, and rendered still more so by the simultaneous fall of Vicks burg - when the telegraph flashed through the land the assurance from the President of the United States that the army of the Potomac, under General Meade, had again smitten the invader? Sure I am, that with the ascriptions of praise that rose to Heaven from twenty millionns of freemen, with the acknowledgments that breathed from patriotic lips throughout the length and breadth of America, to the surviving officers and men who had rendered the country this inestimable service, there beat in every loyal bosom a throb of tender and sorrowful gratitude to the martyrs who had fallen on the sternly contested field. Let a nation's fervent thanks make some amends for the toils and sufferings of those who survive. Would that the heartfelt tribute could penetrate these honored graves!

In order that we may comprehend, to their full extent, our obligations to the martyrs and surviving heroes of the army of the Potomac, let us contemplate for a few moments the train of events, which culminated in the battles of the first days of July. Of this stupen dous rebellion, planned as its originators boast, more than thirty years ago, matured and prepared for during an entire generation, finally commenced because, for the first time since the adoption of the Consti tution, an election of President had been effected without the votes of the South, (which retained, however, the control of the two other branches of the government,) the occupation of the national capital, with the seizure of the public archives and of the treaties with foreign powers was an essential feature. This was, in substance, within my personal knowledge admitted , by one of the most influential leaders of the rebellion and it was fondly though that this object could be affected by a bold and sudden movement onthe fourth of March, 1861. There is abundantproof, also, that a darker plot was contemplated, if not by responsible chiefs of the rebellion, yet by nameless ruffians willing to play a subsidiary and murderous part in the treasonable drama. It was accordingly maintained by the Rebel emissaries in England, in the circles to which they found access, that the new American minister oughtnot, when he arrived be received as the envoy of the United States inasmuch as before that time Washington would be captured and the capitol of the nation and the archivesand muniments of the government would be in the possession of the Confederates. In full accordance also with this threat, it was declared, by by the Rebel Secretary of War in Montgomerey , in the presence of his chiefs and of his colleagues, and of five thousand hearers , while the tidings of the assault on Sumnter was travelling overthe wires on that fatal day of 12th of April o,1861, that before the end of May, the flag which then flaunted the breeze as he expressed it would float overthe dome of the capitol of Washington.

At the time this threat was made, the rebellion was confined to the cotton growing states , and it was well understood bythem thatthe only hope of drawing any other slaveholding state into the conspiracy was by bringingabout a conflict of arms, and firing the heart of the South by the effusion of blood. This was declared by the Charleston pres to be te object for which Sumter was to be assaulted; and the emissaries sent from Richmond, to urge on the unhallowed work, gave the promise that , with the first drop of blod that should be shed, Virginia would place herself bythe side of South Carolina.

In pursuance of this original plan of the leaders of the rebellion, the capture of Washington has been continuallyin view , not merely for the sake of its public buildings, as the capitol of the Confederacy, but as the necessary preliminary to the absorption of the border states, and for the moral effect in the eyes of Europe of possessing the metropolis of the Union.

I allude to them facts, not perhaps enough borne in mind, as a sufficient refutation of the pretence, on the part of the Rebels, that the war is one of self-defence, waged for the right of self-government. It is in reality, a war originally levied by ambitious men in the cotton growing States, for the purpose of drawing the slaveholding border States into the vortex of the conspiracy, first by syrnpathy - which, in the case of South-Eastern Virginia, North Carolina, part of Tennessee and Arkansas, succeeded - and then by force and for the purpose of subjugating Maryland, Western Virginia, Kentucky, Eastern Tennes- see and Missouri; and it is a most extraordinary fact, considering the clamors of the Rebel chiefs on the subject of invasion, that not a soldier of the United States has entered the States last named, except to defend their Union-loving inhabitants from the armies and guerillas of the Rebels.

In conformity with these designs on the city of Washington, and notwithstanding the disastrous results of the invasion of 1862, it was determined by the Rebel Government last summer to resume the offensive in that direction. Unable to force the passage of the Rappahan nock, where General Hooker, notwithstanding the reverse at Chancel lorsville, in May, was strongly posted, the Confederate general resorted to strategy. He had two objects in view. The first was by a rapid movement northward, and by manoeuvring with a portion of his army on the east side of the Blue Ridge, to tempt Hooker from his base of operations, thus leading him to uncover the approaches to Washington, to throw it open to a raid by Stuart's cavalry, and to enable Lee himself to cross the Potomac in the Neighborhood of Poolesville and thus fall upon the capital. This plan of operations was wholly frustrated. The design of the Rebel general was promptly discovered by General Hooker, and, moving with great rapidity from Fredericksburg, he pre- served unbroken the inner line, and stationed the various corps of his army at all the points protecting the approach to Washington, from Centreville up to Leesburg. From this vantage-ground the Rebel gen- eral in vain attempted to draw him. In the mean time, by the vigorous operations of Pleaganton's cavalry, the cavalry of Stuart, though greatly superior in numbers, was so crippled as to be disabled from performing the part assigned it in the campaign. In this manner, General Lee's first object, namely, the defeat of Hooker's army on the south of the Poto- mac and a direct march on Washington, was baffled.

The second part of the Confederate plan, which is supposed to have been undertaken in opposition to the views of General Lee, was to turn the demonstration northward into a real invasion of Mary land and Pennsylvania, in the hope, that, in this way, General Hooker would be drawn to a distance from the capital, and that some oppor tunity would occur of taking him at disadvantage, and, after defeating his army, of making a descent upon Baltimore and Washington." This part of General Lee's plan, which was substantially the repetition of that of 1862, was not less signally defeated, with what honor to the arms of the Union the heights on which we are this day assembled will forever attest.

Much time had been uselessly consumed by the Rebel general in his unavailing attempts to out-manoeuvm General Hooker. Although General broke up from Fredericksburg on the 3d of June, it was not till the 24th that the main body of his army entered Maryland. Instead of crossing the Potomac, as he had intended, east of the Blue Ridge, he was compelled to do it at Shepherdstown and Williamsport, thus mate- rially deranging his entire plan of campaign north of the river. Stuart, who had been sent with Ihis cavalry to the cast of the Blue Ridge, to guard the passes of the mountains, to mask the movements of Lee, and to harass the Union general in crossing the river, having been severely handled by Pleasanton at Beverly Ford, Aldie, and Upperville, instead of being able to retard General Hooker's advance, was driven himself away from his connection with the army of Lee, and cut off for a fortnight from all communication with it-a circumstance to which General Lee, in his report, alludes more than once, with evident displea- sure. Let us now rapidly glance at the incidents of the eventful cam- paign.

A detachment from Ewell's corps, under Jenkins, had pene trated, on the 15th of June, as far as Chambersburg. This movement was intended at first merely as a demonstration, and n a marauding expedition for supplies. It had, however, the salutary effect of alrming the country; and vigorous preparations were made, not only by the General Government, but here in Pennsylvania and in the sister States, to repel the inroad. After two days passed at Chambenburg, Jenkins, anxious for his communications with Ewell, fell back with his plunder to Hagerstown. Here he remained for several days, and then having swept the recesses of the Cumberland valley, came down upon the eastern flank of the South mountain, and pushed his marauding parties as far as Waynesboro. On the 22nd, the remainder of Ewell's corps crossed the river and moved up the valley. They were followed on the 24th by Longstreet and Hill, who crossed at Williamsport and Shep- herdstown, and pushing up the valley, encamped at Chambersburg on the 27th. In this way the whole rebel army, estimated at 90,000 infan- try, upwards of 10,000 cavalry, and 4,000 or 5,000 artillery, making a total of 105,000 of all arms, was concentrated in Pennsylvania.

Up to this time no report of Hooker's movements had been received by General Ue, who, having been deprived of his cavalry, had no means of obtaining information. Rightly judging, however, that no time would be lost by the Union army in pursuit, in order to detain it on the eastern side of the mountains in Maryland and Pennsylvania, and thus preserve his communications by the way of Williamsport, he had, before his own arrival at Chambersburg, directed Ewell to send detachments from his corps to Carlisle and York. The latter detach- ment, under Early, passed through this place on the 26th of June. You need not, fellow citizens of Gettysburg, that I should recall to you those moments of alarm and distress, precursors as they were of the more trying scenes which were so soon to follow.

As soon as Gen. Hooker perceived that the advance of the Confeder ates into Cumberland valley was not a mean feint to draw him away from Washington, he moved rapidly in pursuit. Attempts, as we have seen, were made to harass and retard his passage across the Potomac. These attempts were not only altogether unsuccessful, but were so unskillfully made as to place the entire Federal army between the cavalry of Stuart and the army of Lee. While the latter was massed in the Cumberland valley, Stuart was cast of the mountains, with Hooker's army between, and Gregg's cavalry in close pursuit. Stuart was accord ingly compelled to force a march northward, which was destitute of strategical character, and which deprived his chief of all means of obtaining intelligence.

Not a moment had been lost by General Hooker in the pursuit of Lee. The day after the Rebel army entered Maryland, the Union army crossed the Potomac at Edward's Ferry, and by the 28th of June lay between Harper's Ferry and Frederick. The force of the enemy on that day was partly at Chambersburg, and partly moving on the Cash- town road in the direction of Gettysburg, while the detachments from Ewefl's corps, of which mention has been made, had reached the Sus- quehanna opposite Harrisburg and Columbia. That a great battle must soon be fought, no one could doubt; but in the apparent and perhaps real absence of plan on the part of Lee, it was impossible to foretell the precise scene of the encounter." Wherever fought, consequences the most momentous hung upon the result.

In this critical and anxious state of affairs, General Hooker was relieved, and General Meade was summoned to the chief command of the army. It appears to my unmilitary judgment to reflect the highest credit upon him, upon his predecessor, and upon the corps command- ers of the army of the Potomac, that a change could take place in the chief command of so large a force on the eve of a general battle the various corps necessarily moving on lines somewhat divergent, and all in ignorance of the enemy's intended point of concentration-and that not an hour's hesitation should ensue in the advance of any portion of the entire army.

Having assumed the chief command on the 28th, General Meade directed his left wing, under Reynolds, upon Emmitsburg, and his right upon New Windsor, leaving General French with 11,000 men to protect the Baltimore and Ohio railroad, and convoy the public property from Harper's Ferry to Washington. Buford's cavalry was then at this place, and Kilpatrick's att Hanover, where he encountered and defeated the rear of Stuart's cavalry, who was roving the country in search of the main army of Lee. On the Rebel side, Hill had reached Fayetteville on the Cashtown road on the 28th, and was followed on the same road by Longstreet on the 29th. The eastern side of the mountain, as seen from Gettysburg, was lighted up at night by the camp-fires of the enemy's advance, and the country swarmed with his foraging par. ties. It was now too evident to be questioned, that the thunder-cloud, so long gathering blackness, would soon burst on some part of the devoted vicinity of Gettysburg.

The 30th of June was a day of important preparation. At half-past eleven o'clock in the morning, General Buford passed through Gettysburg, upon a reconnaissance in force, with his cavalry, upon the Chambersburg road. The information obtained by him was immedi ately communicated to General Reynolds, who was, in consequence, directed to occupy Gettysburg. That gallant officer accordingly, with the First Corps, marched from Emmitsburg to within six or seven miles of this place, and encamped on the right bank of Marsh's creek. Our right wing, meantime, was moved to Manchester. On the same day the corps of Hill and Longstreet were pushed still further forward on the Chamberaburg road, and distributed in the vicinity of Marsh's creek, while a reconnaissance was made by the Confederate General Pettigrew up to a very short distance from this place.- Thus at nightfall, on the 30th of June, the greater part of the Rebel force was concentrated in the immediate vicinity of two corps of the Union army, the former re- freshed by two days passed in comparative repose and deliberate prepa- ration for the encounter, the latter separated by a march of one or two days from their supporting corps, and doubtful at what precise point they were to expect an attack.

And now the momentous day, a day to be forever remembered in the annals of the country, arrived. Early in the morning, on the first of July, the conflict began. I need not say that it would be impossible for me to comprehend, within the limits of the hour, such a narrative as would do anything like full justice to the all-important events of these three great days, or to the merit of the brave officen and men, of every rank, of every arm of the service, and of every loyal State, who bore their part in the tremendous struggle-ahke those who nobly sacrificed their lives for their country, and those who survive, many of them scarred with honorable wounds, the objects of our admiration and gratitude. The astonishingly minute, accurate, and graphic accounts contained in the journals of the day, prepared from personal observa tion by reporters who witnessed the scenes, and often shared the perils which they describe, and the highly valuable "notes" of Professor Jacobs, of the University in this place, to which I am greatly indebted, will abundantly supply the deficiency of my necessarily too condensed statement.

General Reynolds, on arriving at Gettysburg, in the morning of the lst, found Buford with his cavalry warmly engaged with the enemy, whom he held most gallantly in check. Hastening himself to the front, General Reynolds directed his men to be moved over the fields from the Emniitsburg road, in front of M'MiDan's and Dr. Schmucker's, under cover of the Seminary Ridge. Without a moment's hesitation, he attacked the enemy, at the same time sending orders to the Eleventh Corps (General Howard's) to advance as promptly as possible. General Reynolds immediately found engaged with a force which greatly outnumbered his own, and had scarcely made his dispositions for the action when he fell, mortally wounded, at the head of his advance. The command of the First Corps devolved on General Doubleday, and that of the field on General Howard, who arrived at 11:30, with Schurz's and Barlow's divisions of the Eleventh Corps, the latter of whom received a severe wound. Thus strengthened, the advan- tage of the battle was for some time on our side. The attacks of the Rebels were vigorously repulsed by Wadsworth's division of the First Corps, and a large number of prisoners, including General Archer, were captured. At length, however, the continued reinforcement of the Confederates from the main body in the neighborhood, and by the divisions of Rodes and Early, coming down by separate lines from Heidlersberg and taking post on our extreme right, turned the fortunes of the day. Our army, after contesting the ground for five hours, was obliged to yield to the enemy, whom force outnumbered them two to one; and toward the close of the afternoon General Howard deemed it prudent to withdraw the two corps to the heights where we are now assembled. The great part of the First Corps passed through the out skirts of the town, and reached the hill without serious loss or molesta tion. The Eleventh Corps and portions of the First, not being aware that the enemy had already entered the town from the north, attempted to force their way through Washington and Baltimore streets, which, in the crowd and confusion of the scene, they did with a heavy loss in prisoners.

General Howard was not unprepared for this turn in the fortunes of the day. He had, in the course of the morning, caused Cemetery Hill to be occupied by General Steinwehr, with the second division of the Eleventh Corps. About the time of the withdrawal of our troops to the hill, General Hancock arrived, having been sent by Gen- eral Meade, on hearing of the death of Reynolds, to assume the command of the field till he himself could reach the front. In conjunction with General Howard, General Hancock immediately proceeded to post troops and to repel an attack on our right flank. This attack was feebly made and promptly repulsed. At nightfall, our troops on the hill, who had so gallantly sustained themselves during the toil and peril of the day, were cheered by the arrival of General Slocum with the Twelfth Corps and of General Sickles with a part of the Third.

Such was the fortune of the first day, commencing with de cided success to our arms, followed by a check, but ending in the occupation of this all-important position. To you, fellow citizens of Gettysburg, I need not attempt to portray the anxieties of the ensuing night. Witnessing, as you had done with sorrow, the withdrawal of our army through your streets, with a considerable loss of prisoners mourning as you did over the brave men who had fallen, shocked with the wide-spread desolation around you, of which the wanton burning of the Harman House had given the signal - ignorant of the near approach of General Meade, you passed the wary hours of the night in painful expectation.

Long before the dawn of the 2d of July, the new Commander-in- Chief had reached the ever-memorable field of service and glory. Hav- ing received intelligence of the events in progress, and informed by the reports of Generals Hancock and Howard of the favorable character of the positions, he determined to give battle to the enemy at this point. He accordingly directed the remaining corps of the army to concentrate at Gettysburg with all possible expedition, and breaking up his head- quarters at Taneytown at ten p.m., he arrived at the front at one o'clock in the morning of the 2d of July. Few were the moments given to sleep, during the rapid watches of that brief midsummer's night, by officers or men, though half of our troops were exhausted by the conflict of the day and the residue wearied by the forced marches which had brought them to the rescue. The full moon, veiled by thin clouds, shone down that night on a strangely unwonted scene. The silence of the grave-yard was broken by the heavy tramp of armed men, by the neigh of the war-horse, the harsh rattle of the wheels of artillery hurrying to their stations, and all the indescribable tumult of preparation. The various corps of the army, as they arrived, were moved to their positions, on the spot where we are assembled and the ridges that extend south-east and south-west; batteries were planted and breastworks thrown up. The Second and Fifth Corps, with the rest of the Third, had reached the ground by seven o'clock, a.m.; but it was not tifl two o'clock in the afternoon that Sedgwick arrived with the Sixth Corps. He had marched thirty-four miles since nine o'clock on the evening before. It was only on his arrival that the Union army approached in equality of numbers with that of the Rebels, who were posted upon the opposite and parallel ridge, distant from a mile to a mile and a half, overlapping our position on either wing, and probably exceeding by ten thousand the army of General Meade.

. And here I cannot but remark on the providential inaction of the Rebel army." Had the contest been renewed by it at daylight on the 2d of July, with the First and Eleventh Corps exhausted by the battle and the retreat, the Third and Twelfth weary from their forced march, and the Second, Fifth and Sixth not yet arrived, nothing but a miracle could have saved the army from a great disaster. Instead of this, the day dawned, the sun rose, the cool hours of the morning passed, the fore. noon and a considerable part of the afternoon wore away, without the slightest aggressive movement on the pan of the enemy. Thus time was given for half of our forces to arrive and take their places in the lines, while the rest of the army enjoyed a much needed half day's repose.

At length, between three and four o'clock in the afternoon, the work of death began. A signal gun from the hostile batteries was followed by a tremendous cannonade along the Rebel lines, and this by a heavy advance of infantry, brigade after brigade, commencing on the enemy's right against the left of our army, and so onward to the left center. A forward movement of General Sickles, to gain a commanding position from which to repel the Rebel attack, drew upon him a de- structive fire from the enemy's batteries, and a furious assault from Longstreet's and Hill's advancing troops. After a brave resistance on the part of his corps, he was forced back, himself failing severely wounded. This was the critical moment of the second day, but the Fifth and part of the Sixth Corps, with portions of the First and Second, were promptly brought to the support of the Third. The struggle was fierce and murderous, but by sunset our success was decisive, and the enemy was driven back in confusion. The most important service was rendered towards the close of the day, in the memorable advance between Round Top and Little Round Top, by General Crawfbrd's division of the Fifth Corps, consisting of two brigades of the Pennsyl- vania Reserves, of which one company was from this town and neigh- borhood. The Rebel force was driven back with great loss in killed and prisoners. At eight o'clock in the evening a desperate attempt was made by the enemy to storm the position of the Eleveth Corps on Cemetery Hill; but here, too, after a terrible conflict, he was repulsed with im- mense loss. Ewell, on our extreme right, which had been weakened by the withdrawal of the troops sent over to support our left, had suc ceeded in gaining a foothold within a portion of our lines, near Spangler's spring. This was the only advantage obtained by the rebels to compensate them for the disasters of the day, and of this, as we shall see, they were soon deprived.

Such was the result of the second act of this eventful drama - a day hard fought, and at one moment anxious, but, with the exception of the slight reverse just named, crowned with dearly earned but uniform success to our arms, auspicious of a glorious termination of the final struggle. On these good omens the night fell.

In the course of the night, General Geary returned to his position on the right, from which he had hastened the day before to strengthen the Third Corps. He irmnediately engaged the enemy, and after a sharp and decisive action, drove them out of our lines, recovering the ground which had been lost on the preceding day. A spirited contest was kept up all the morning on this part of the line; but General Geary, rein- forced by Wheaton's brigade of the Sixth Corps, maintained his posi- tion, and inflicted very severe losses on the Rebels.

Such was the cheering commencement of the third day's work, and with it ended all serious attempts of the enemy on our right. As on the preceding day, his efforts were now mainly directed against our left centre and left wing. From eleven till half-past one o'clock, all was still - a solemn pause of preparation, as if both armies were nerving themselves for the supreme effort. At length the awful silence, more terrible than the wildest tumult of battle, was broken by the roar of two hundred and fifty pieces of artillery from the opposite ridges, joining in a cannonade of unsurpassed violence - the Rebel batteries along two thirds of their line pouring their fire upon Cemetery Hill, and the centre and left wing of our army. Having attempted in this way for two hours, but without success, to shake the steadiness of our lines, the enemy rallied his forces for a last grand assault. Their attack was principally directed against the position of our Second Corps. Successive lines of Rebel infantry moved forward with equal spirit and stead ness from their cover on the wooded crest of Seminary Ridge, crossing the intervening plain, and, supported right and left by their choicest brigades, charged furiously up to our batteries. Our own brave troops of the Second Corps, supported by Doubleday's division and Stan nard's brigade of the First, received the shock with firmness; the ground on both sides was long and fiemely contested, and was covered with the killed and the wounded; the tide of battle flowed and ebbed across the plain, till, after a "determined and great struggle,'" as it is pronounced by General Lee, the Rebel advance, consisting of two. thirds of HiU's corps and the whole of Longstreet's - including Pick ett's division, the elite of his corps, which had not yet been under fire, and was now depended upon to decide the fortune of this last eventful day was driven back with prodigious slaughter, discomfited and bro ken. While these events were in progress at our left centre, the enemy was driven, with a considerable loss of prisoners, from a strong position on our extreme left, from which he was annoying our force on Little Round Top. In the terrific assault on our centre, Generals Hancock and Gibbon were wounded. In the Rebel army, Generals Armistead, Kemper, Pettigrew and Trimble were wounded, the first named mor tally, the latter also made prisoner, General Garnett was killed, and thirty-five hundred officers and men made prisoners.

These were the expiring agonies of the three days' conflict, and with them the battle ceased. It was fought by the Union army with courage and sW, from the first cavalry skirmish on Wednesday morn- ing to the fearful rout of the enemy on Friday afternoon, by every arm and every rank of service, by officers and men, by cavalry, artillery, and infantry. The superiority of numbers was with the enemy, who were led by the ablest conmianden in their service; and if the Union force had the advantage of a strong position, the Confederates had that of choos- ing time and place, the prestige of former victories over the army of the Potomac, and of the success of the first day. Victory does not always fail to the lot of those who deserve it; but that so decisive atriumph, under circumstances like these, was gained by our troops, I would ascribe, under Providence, to the spirit of exalted patriotism that ani mated them, and the consciousness that they were fighting in a righ teous cause."

All hope of defeating our army, and securing what General Lee calls 'the valuable results' of such an achievement, having vanished, he thought only of rescuing from destruction the remains of his shattered forces. In killed, wounded and missing, he had, as far as can be ascer- tained, suffered a loss of about 37,000 men rather more than a third of the army with which he is supposed to have marched into Pennsyl. vania. Perceiving that his only safety was in rapid retreat, he com- menced withdrawing his troops at daybreak on the 4th, throwing up field works in front of our left, which, assuming the appearance of a new position, were intended probably to protect the rear of his army in retreat. That day - sad celebration of the 4th of July for an army of Americans -was passed by him in hurrying off his trains. By nightfall, the main army was in full retreat upon the Cashtown and Fairfield roads, and it moved with such precipitation, that, short as the nights were, by day- the following morning, notwithstanding a heavy rain, the rear guard had left its position. The struggle of the last two days resembled, in many respects, the battle of Waterloo; and if, in the evening of the third day, General Meade, like the Duke of Wellington, had had the assistance of a powerful auxiliary army to take up the pursuit, the mut of the Rebels would have been as complete as that of Napoleon.

Owing to the circumstances just named, the intentions of the enemy were not apparent on the 4th. The moment his retreat was discovered, the following morning, he was pursued by our cavalry on the Cashtown road and through the Emmitsburg and Monterey passes, and by Sedgwick's corps on the Fairfield road. His rear guard was briskly attacked at Fairfield; a great number of wagons and ambulances were captured in the pwses of the mountains; the country swarmed with his stragglers,,and his wounded were literally emptied from the vehicles containing them into the farm houses on the road. General Lee, in his report, makes repeated mention of the Union prisoners whom he conveyed into Virginia, somewhat overstating their number. He states, also, that 'such of his wounded as were in a condition to be removed' were forwarded to Williamport. He does not mention that the number of his wounded not removed, and left to the Christian care of the victors, was 7,540 , not one of whom failed of any attention which it was possible, under the circumstances of the case, to afford them, not one of whom, certainly, has been put upon Libby prison fare - lingering death by starvation . Heaven forbid, however, that we hould claim any merit for the exercise of common humanity.

Under the protection of the mountain ridge, whose narrow passes are easily held even by a retreating army, General Lee reached Williamsport in safety, and took up a strong position opposite to that place. General Meade necessarily pursued with the main army by a flank movement through Middletown, Turner's Pass having been secured by General French. Passing through the South mountain, the' Union army came up with that of the Rebels on the 12th, and found it securely posted on the heights of Marsh run. The position was reconnoi- tred, and preparations made for an attack on the 13th. The depth of the river, swollen by the recent rains, authorized the expectation that the enemy would be brought to a general engagement the following day. An advance was accordingly made by General Meade on the morning of the 14th; but it was soon found that the Rebels had escaped in the night, with such haste that Ewell's corps forded the river where the water was breast-high .31 The cavalry, which had rendered the most important services during the three days, and in harassing the enemy's retreat, was now sent in pursuit, and captured two guns and a large number of prisoners. In an action which took place at Falling Waters, General Pettigrew was mortally wounded. General Meade, in further pursuit of the Rebels, crossed the Potomac at Berlin. Thus, again covering the approaches to Washington, he compelled the nemy to pass the Blue Ridge at one of the upper gaps; and in about six weeks from the comniencement of the campaign, General Lee found himself on the south side of the Rappahannock, with the probable loss of about a third Part of his army.

Such, most inadequately recounted, is the history of the ever- memorable three days, and of the events immediately preceding and following. It has been pretended, in order to diminish the magnitude

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brought upon the whole land the scourge of an aggressive and wicked war - a war which can have no other termination compatible with the permanent safety and welfare of the country but the complete destruc tion of the military power of the eriemy. I have, on other occasions, attempted to show that to yield to his demands and acknowledge his independence, thus resolving the Union at once into two hostile govern ments, with a certainty of further disintegration, would annihilate the strength and the influence of the country as a member of the family of nations; afford to foreign powers the opportunity and the temptation for humiliating and disastrous interference in our affairs; wrest from the Middle and Western States some of their great natural outlets to the sea and of their most important lines of internal communication; deprive the commerce and navigation of the country of two-thirds of our sea coast and of the fortresses which protect it; not only so, but would enable each individual State some of them with a white population equal to a good sized Northern country rather the dominant party in each State, to cede its territory, its harbor, its fortresses, the mouths of its rivers to any foreign power. It cannot be that the people of the loyal State that, twenty-two millions of brave and prosperous free- men will, for the temptation of a brief truce in an eternal border war, consent to this hideous national suicide.

Do not think that I exaggerate the consequences of yielding to the demands of the leaders of the rebellion. I understate them. They require of us not only all the sacrifices I have named, not only the cession to them, a foreign and hostile power, of all the territory of the United States at present occupied by the Rebel forces, but the abandon- ment to them of the vast regions we have rescued from their grasp-of Maryland, of a part of Eastern Virginia and the whole of Western Virginia; the sea coast of North and South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida; Kentucky, Tennessm, and Missouri; Arkansas, and the larger portion of Mississippi, Louisiana, and Texas in most of which, with the exception of lawless guerillas, there is not a Rebel in arms, in all of which the great majority of the people are loyal to the Union. We must give back, too, the helpless colored population, thousands of whom are perilling their lives in the ranks of our amies, to a bondage rendered ten-fold more bitter by the momentary enjoyment of freedom. Finally we must surrender every man in the Southern country, white or black, who has moved a finger or spoken a word for the restoration of the Union, to a reign of terror m remorseless as that of Robespierre, which has been the chief instrument by which the Rebellion has been orga- nized and sustained, and which has already filled the prisons of the South with noble men, whose only crime is that they are not the worst of criminals. The South is full of such men. I do not believe there has been a day since the election of President Uncoln, when, if an ordi- nance of secession could have been fairly submitted, after a free discus- sion, to the mass of the People in any single Southern State, a majority of ballots would have been given in its favor. No, not in South Carolina. It is not possible that the majority of the people, even of that State, if permitted, without fear or favor, to give a ballot on the question, would have abandoned a leader like [James L.] Petigru, and all the memories of the Gadsdens, the Rutledges, and the Cotesworth Pinckneys of the revolutionary and constitutional age, to follow the agitators of the present day.

Nor must we be deterred from the vigorous prosecution of the war by the suggestion, continually thown out by the Rebels and those who sympathize with them, that, however it might have been at an earlier stage, there has been engendered by the operations of the war a state of exasperation and bitterness which, independent of all reference to the original nature of the matters in controversy, will forever prevent the restoration of the Union, and the return of harmony between the two great sections of the country. This opinion I take to be entirely without foundation.

No man can deplore more than I do the miseries of every kind unavoidably incident to war. Who could stand on this spot and call to mind the scenes of the first days of July with any other feehw. A sad foreboding of what would ensue, if war should break out between North and South, has haunted me through life, and led me, perhaps too long, to tread in the path of hopeless comproniim, in the fond endeavor to conciliate those who were predetermined not to be conciliated." But it is not true, as is pretended by the Rebels and their sympathizers, that the war has been carried on by the United States without entire regard to those temperaments which am enjoined by the law of nations, by our modem civihmtion, and by the spirit of Christianity. It would be quite easy to point out, in the recent military history of the leading European powers, acts of violence and cruelty, in the prosecution of their wars, to which no parallel can be found among us. In fact, when we consider the peculiar bitterness with which civil wars are almost invariably waged, we may justly boast of the manner in which the United States have carried on the contest. It is of course impossible to prevent the lawless acts of stragglers and deserters, or the occasional unwarrantable proceedings of subordinates on distant stations; but I do not believe there is, in all history, the record of a civil war of such gigantic dimen- sions where so little has been done in the spirit of vindictiveness as in this war, by the GoverTunent and comnianders of the United States; and this notwithstanding the provocation given by the Rebel Government by assuming the responsibility of wrettches like Quantrell , refusing to quarter colored troops and scourging and selling into slavery free colored men from the North who fall into their hands, by covering the sea with pirates, refusing a just exchange of prisoners, while they crowd their armies with paroled prisoners not exchanged, and starving prison en of war to death."

In the next place, if there are any present who believe that, in addition to the effect of the military operations of the war, the confisca- tion acts and emancipation proclamations have embittered the Rebels beyond the possibility of reconciliation, I would request them to reflect that the tone of the Rebel leaders and Rebel press was just as bitter in the first months of the war, nay, before a gun was fired, as it is now. There were speeches made in Congress in the very last session before the outbreak of the Rebellion, so ferocious as to show that their authors were under the influence of a real fremy. At the present day, if there is any discrimination made by the Confederate press in the affected scorn, hatred and contumely with which every shade of opinion and sentiment in the loyal States is treated, the bitterest contempt is be- stowed upon those at the North who still speak the language of compro- ntise, and who condemn those measures of the administration which us alleged to have rendered the return of peace hopeless.

No, my friends, that gracious Providence which over-rules all things for the best 'from meniing evil still educing good,' has so mn- stituted our natures, that the violent excitement of the passions in one direction is generally followed by a reaction in an opposite direction, and the sooner for the violence. If it were not @if injuries infficted and retaliated of necessity led to new retaliations, with forever ac- cumulating compound interest of revenge, then the world, thousands of years ago, would have been turned into an earthly hell, and the nations of the earth would have been resolved into clans of furies and demons, each forever warring with his neighbor. But it is not so; all history teaches a different lesson. The Wars of the Roses in England lasted an entire generation, from the battle of St. Albans in 1455 to that of Bosworth Field in 1485. Speaking of the former, Hume says; 'This was the first blood spilt in that fatal quarrel, which was not finished in less than a course of thirty years; which was sign@d by twelve pitched battles; which opened a scene of extraordinary fierceness and cruelty; is computed to have cost the lives of eighty princ@ of the blood; and almost entirely annihilated the ancient nobility of England. The strong attachments which, at that time, men of the same kindred bore to each other, and the vindictive spirit which was considered a point of honor, rendered the great families implacable in their r@ent- ment, and widened every moment the breach between the parties.' Such was the state of things in England under which an entire genera- tion grew up; but when Henry VII., in whom the titles of the two Houses were united, went up to London after the battle of Bosworth Field, to mount the throne, he was every-where received with joyous acciamations, 'as one ordained and sent from heaven to put an end to the dissensions' which had so long afflicted the country.

The great rebellion of England of the seventeenth century, after long and angry premonitions, may be mid to have begun with the calling of the Long Parliament in 1640-and to have ended with the return of Ch@les II., in 1660-twenty years of discord, conflict and civil war; of confiscation, plunder, havoc; a proud hereditary p ... age trampled in the dust; a national church overturned, its clergy beggared, its most eniinent prelate put to death; a military despotism established on the ruins of a monarchy which had subsisted seven hundred years, and the legitimate sovereign brought to the block; the great families which adhered to the king proscribed, impoverished, ruined; prisoners of war a fate worse than starvation in Libby sold to slavery in the West Indies; in a word, everything that can embitter and madden contending factions." Such was the state of things for twenty years; and yet, by no gentle transition, but suddenly, and 'when the restoration of affairs appeared most hopeless,' the son of the beheaded sovereign was brought back to his father's blood-stained throne, with such 'unex- pressible and universal joy' as led the merry monarch to exclaim 'he doubted it had been his own fault he had been absent so long, for he saw nobody who did not protest he had ever wished for his return.' 'In this wonderful manner,' says Clarendon, 'and with this incredible expe- dition did God put an end to a rebellion that had raged near twenty years, and had been carried on with all the horrid circumstances of murder, devastation and parricide that fire and sword, in the hands of the most wicked men in the world,' (it is a royalist that is speaking,) 'could be instruments Of, almost to the desolation of two kingdoms, and the exceeding defacing and deforming of the third. . . . By these remarkable steps did the merciful hand of God, in this short space of time, not only bind up and heal all thom wounds, but even made the scar as undiscemable as, in respect of the deepness, was possible, which was a glorious addition to the deliverance.'

In Germany, the war of the Reformation and of Charles V., in the sixteenth century, the Thirty Years' war in the seventeenth century, the Seven Years' war in the eighteenth century, not to speak of other less celebrated contests, entailed upon that country 4LI1 the miseries of intestine strife for more than three centuries. At the close of the last named war which was the shortest of all, and waged in the most civilized age 'an officer,' says Archenhoiz, 'rode through seven villages in Hesse, and found in them but on, human being.'More than three hundred principalities, comprehended in the Empire, fermented with the fierce passions of proud and petty States; at the commencement of this period the castles of robber counts frowned upon every hilltop; a dreadful secret tribunal, whose seat no one knew, whose power none could escape, froze the hearts of men with terror through- out the land; religious hatred mingled its bitter poison in the sftthing caldron of provincial animosity; but of all these deadly enmities be- tween the States of Germany scarcely the memory remains. There are controversies in that country, at the present day, but they grow mainly out of the rivalry of the two leading powers. There is no country in the world in which the sentiment of national brotherhood is stronger.

In Italy, on the brealdng up of the Roman Empire, society might be said to be resolved into its original element&-into hostile atoms, whose only movement was that of mutual repulsion. Ruthless barbarians had destroyed the old organizations, and covered the land with a merciless feudalism. As the new civilization grew up, under the wing of the church, the noble families and the walled towns fell madly into conflict with each other; the secular feud of Pope and Emperor scourged the land; province against province, city against city, street against street, waged remorseless war with each other from father to son, tifl Dante was able to fill his imaginary bell with the real demons of Indian history. So ferocious had the factions become, that the great poet-exile himself, the glory of his native city and of his native lan- guage, was, by a decree of the municipality, condemned to be burned alive if found in the city of Florence. But these deadly feuds and hatred yielded to political influences, as the hostile cities were grouped into States under stable governments; the fingering traditions of the ancient animosities gradually died away, and now Tuscan and Lombard, Sar dinia and Neapolitan, as if to shame the degenerate sons of America, are joining in one cry for a united Italy.

. In France, not to go back to the civil wars of the League, in the sixteenth century, and of the Fronde, in the seventeenth; not to speak of the dreadful scenes throughout the kingdom, which followed the revocation of the edict of Nantes; we have, in the great revolution which commenced at the close of the last century, seen the blood- hounds of civil strife let loose as rarely before in the history of the world. The reign of terror established at Paris stretched its bloody Briarean arms to every city and village in the land, and if the most deadly feuds which ever divided a people had the power to cause permanent alienation and hatred, this surely was the occasion. But far otherwise the fact. In seven years from the fall of Robespierre, the strong arm of the youthful conquergr brought order out of this chaos of crime and woe; Jacobins whose hands were scarcely cleansed from the best blood of France met the returning emigrants, whose estates they had confiscated and whose kindred they had dragged to the guillo- tine, in the Imperial antechambers; and when, after another turn of the wheel of fortune, Louis XVIII. was restored to his throne, he took the regicide Fouche, who had voted for his brother's death, to his cabinet and confidence.

The people of loyal America will never ask you, sir, to take to your confidence or adniit again to a share in the government the hard-hearted men whose cruel lust of power has brought this desolating war upon the land, but there is no personal bitterness felt even against them. They may live, if they can bear to live after wantonly causing the death of so many thousands of their fellow-men; they may live in safe obscurity beneath the shelter of the government they have sought to overthrow, or they may fly to the protection of the governments of Europe some of them are already there, seeking, happily in vain, to obtain the aid of foreign powers in furtherance of their own treason. There let them stay. The humblest dead soldier, that lies cold and stiff in his grave before us, is an object of envy beneath the clods that cover him, in comparison with the living man, I care not with what trumpery credentials he may be furnished, who is willing to grovel at the foot of a foreign throne for assistance in compassing the ruin of his country.

But the hour is coming and now is, when the power of the leaders of the Rebellion to delude and inflame must cease." There is no bitterness on the part of the massses. The people of the South are not going to wage an eternal war, for the wretched pretext by which this Rebellion is sought to be justified. The bonds that unite us as one people-a substantial community of origin, language, belief, and law, (the four great ties that hold the societies of men together;) common national and political interests; a conunon history; a common pride in a glorious ancestry; a common interest in this great heritage of bless- inp; the very geographical features of the country; the mighty rivers that cross the lines of climate and thus facilitate the interchange of natural and industrial products, while the wonder-working arm of the engineer has leveled the mountain-wafls which separate the East and West, compelling your own Alleghenies, my Maryland and Pennsyl- vania friends, to open wide their everlasting doors to the chariot-wheels of traffic and travel; these bonds of union are of perennial force and energy, while the causes of alienation are imaginary, factitious and transient .The heart of the people, North and South, is for the Union. Indications, too plain to be mistaken, announce the fact, both in the East and the West of the States in rebellion. In North Carolina and Arkansas the fatal charm at length is broken. At Raleigh and Little Rock the lips of honest and brave men are unsealed, and an indepen- dent press is unhmbering its artillery. When its rifled cannon shall begin to roar, the hosts of treasonable sophistry the mad delusions of the day-will fly like the Rebel army through the passes of yonder mountain. The wry masses of the people us yearning to see the dear old flag again floating upon their capitols, and they sigh for the return of the peace, prosperity, and happiness, which they enjoyed under a government whose power was felt only in its blessings

And now, friends, fellow citizens of Gettysburg and Pennsyl- vania, and you from remoter States, let me again, as we part, invoke your benediction on these honored graves. You feel, though the occa- sion is mournful, that it is good to he here." You feel that it was greatly auspicious for the cause of the country, that the men of the East and men of the West, the men of nineteen sister States, stood side by side, on the perilous ridges of the battle. You now feel it a new bond of union, that they shall lie side by side, till the clarion, louder than that which marshalled them to the combat, shall awake their slumbers. God bless the Union; it is dearer to us for the blood of brave men which has been shed in its defenses The spots on which they stood and fell; these pleasant heights; the fertile plain beneath them; the thriving village whose streets so lately rang with the strange din of war; the fields beyond the ridge, where the noble Reynolds held the advancing foe at bay, and, while he gave up his own life, assured by his forethought and self-sacrifice the triumph of the two succeeding days; the little streams which wind through the hills, on whose banks in aftertimes the wonder- ing ploughman will turn up, with the rude weapons of savage warfare, the fearful missiles of modem artillery; Seminary Ridge, the Peach Orchard, Cemetery, Culp, and Wolf Hill, Round Top, Litttle Round Top, humble names, henceforward dear and famous-no lapse of time, no distance of space, shall cause you to be forgotten. "The whole earth,'"said Pericles, as he stood over the remains of his fellow citizens, who had fallen in the first year of the Peloponnesian war, "the whole earth is the sepulchre of illustrious men." All time, he might have added, is the millennium of their glory. Surely I would do no injustice to the other noble achievements of the war, which have reflected such honor on both arms of the service, and have entitled the arinies and the navy of the United States, their officers and men, to the warmest thanks and the richest rewards which a grateful people can pay. But they, I am sure, will join us in saying, as we bid farewell to the dust of these martyr-heroes, that wheresoever throughout the civilized world the accounts of this great warfare are read, and down to the latest period of recorded time, in the glorious annals of our common country, there will be no brighter page than that which relates The Battles of Gettys- burg.

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