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The National tribune. (Washington, D.C.) 1877-1917, February 01, 1879, Image 1

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GBOBGE 33. LEMON
Editors nnd Froprloto
" VoL- n :N"- Washington, d. a, February, im
JTiiltfrtrfiiecftr rffny Itf -A y CVnprw, n A year oatir ford, i'678, bpGtorg M. tomon A Co., fn the 0lc& oth Libra ian ofCongreat, mi Washington, V. C.
TBBMS, FIFTY CENTS PER "STEAK,
Spcclmon OoplcB sent Free on Request.
The Picket Guard."
TJV MllS. HOW&AN D.
u All quiot along tho Potomao," thoy say,
. Except now nnd them a stray plokot
Is shot, as ho walks on his boat to and fro,
By a rillonum hid in tho thlckot.
1Tis nothing a private or two now and then,
Will not count lit tho nows or tho battle.
Hot an oflloev lost only ouo of tho men
Moaning out all alone, tho death-rattle.
u All quiet along Iho Potomac," to-night
Whoro tho soldiers Ho peacefully dreaming;
Tholr tonte iu tho rays of the clear autumn moon
Or tho light of tho watehliroa are gleaming.
A tromulous sigh, aa the gontlc night wind
Through the forest leaves softly Ts creeping
While stars up above, with their glittering eyes
Kcop guard for tho army Is sleeping.
There's only tho sound of tho lone sentry's troad.
As ho tramps from tho rook to tho fountain,
And ho thinks of tho two in tho low trundle .bod,
Far away In tho cot on tho mountain.
Tho musket falls slack ; his face dark and grim
Grows gontlo, with memories tender
As ho mutters a prayer for the childron asleep,
And their mother may Heaven defend her.
Tho moon seems to shine just as brightly as thon
That night, whon tho lovo yet uuspoken
Leaped up from his lips when low, murmuring vows
Wore pledged to bo over unbroken.
Thon drawing his sleuvo roughly over his eyes,
He dashes olf tears, that are welling
And gathers his gun closer up to Its place,
As if to keop down tho heart-swelling.
Ho passes the fountain, tho blasted pine tree,
His footstep is lagging and weary
Yet onward ho goes, through the broad belt of light,,
Toward tho shades of the forest so dreary, ''
Hark! was it the night wind, that rustled the leaves,
Was it moon light so wondrously flashing?
It looked liko a rflie : "Ha! Mary. Good Bye !"
And tho life blood isbbiug and. plashing.
"All quiet along tho 'Potomao to-night
No Bound save thOTuah of tho river,
Wkllo soft falls tho dow, on the face of tho dead
Tho picket's off duty forever.
;ffo publish this most exquisite and touching poem, writ
ton during tho earlier, part of the war, believing its beauties
will bo appreciated, by our thousands of readers.
For Tine National Triuuhis!
Congressional Prayers.
3tY AN OLD WASHINGTON COUHESPONDENT.
The Homestead Saved.
Written for The Nation At Tihbuhk.
Thanks ho to Heavon, Sarah Jane, for the news I've got to
tell!
1 Ctuno from town in warmest haste, your sorrows to dispel ;
And Charley, flecked with foam, bore me, like any gallant
stood,
Who know hla master's Mthful wifo, of comfort stood in need.
Oh. how my hoart did swell with joy as o'er tho hills I carao,
'Till, wife, my heart roBo in my throat, and I sobbed, my loving
dame !
You want to know? Of couraoyou do! Now try just onco to
guesrt
What news this day did surely bring, to make your burdens
less.
Why should you turn so white, Sarah? Hero lean against my
breast!
And with me thank the blessed Lord, who has sent us peace and
rest j
For, Jane, wo need not leave the home, so precious we have
made;
Forover gone is the cruel dread, that on our hearta has preyed
Yea, yea, dear wlfo ! tho fearful clouds have rolled away at
last!
Thoeo dense black clouds that have so long, tholr shadow o'or
us cast.
I wont to town this morning, Jaho, with a heavy load to bear,
For you know our stern, hard, creditor was waiting for mo
there;
And I, without a cent to pay, wife, upon that mortgage due.
Rode slowly on, half crazed with caro, and grieving sore for
you.
Tho san shone brightly, and tho Holds wore rich with, spring
time groen,
But I'd no hoart for nature's charms, I dwelt on what had
boen
Our happlnoss until this load of dobt unto us cume,
And it I shed Home scalding tears, thoy were not those of
shame.
I thought, too, of those lonely graves cut thoro upon the hill,
Whoro little Jloss and Charlie lie, and then my oyes did fill
With burning tears, it seemed so hard to go and leave thorn
thoro,
For I knew, dear wifo, no stranger hands for tho lonely graves
would caro.
Well, Jano, I raaohed tho town ut last ! Who should I meet but
Will!
Will Jones, you know, who was sick with mo down at Ander-
sonvlllo.
"Halt!"ho.oried. "Have you heard tho nows? No? Woll.lt
is so grsiul,
And the people talk, about it to-day, old lad, all over our land !
They have passed a bill at Washington, and It's signed by the
President, too,
That will bring live hundred to me, my boy, and a thousand,
Oharloy, to you.
It's tho pension arroars thoy'r golu' to pay why, Oharloy, what
ails you, boy l"
And ho lifted mo down from myname-sakoljoro, for I'd fainted
from sudden joy.
WM. H. HOPPING,
EfammontQwiit Atlantic Co,, JV. J.
"I am almost 80vQnty-ono,M said Mm. Myra Clark
Qainoa to a Washington correspondent the other day,
"ana 1 expect to live till I am a iiunctroa and mty. I oorao
ot a long-uvott race, uno 01 my aunt uyocito a uunureci
andflftoou." Aul seeing the correspondent somtinteing
her hair. "It isn't dvod." she said, "and it is vorv alhm-
f v
dant, falling below my waiBt."
I see by a local paper that tho pastor of one of tho col
ored churches of Washington, on tho Sunday before Con
gress convened, offered a prayer for its benefit, in which
occurred tho following :
u0h Lord I Dou seest all dese Congressmen flockin' to
dis city like do fishes in de 'postles not. Oh Lord 1 have
mercy on deni, for dey aro poor sinners. Make dem gen
uine men, and presarve dera from conciliatin' wid do deb-
blo."
This caused cnnsiderable amusement, and suggests a
number of interesting reminiscences of prayers in Con
gress and some political conventions I have attended. As
everybody knows, each House of Congress has a chaplain,
who recoives $900 a year for ofFering a prayer each morn
ing of the 'sessiou. They are generally selected from
among the pastors of the city, and the present incumbents
aro Dr. Sunderland, of the Firs.t Presbyterian church,
'who officiates in the Senate, and Rev. Mr. Harrison, a
Methodist, who officiates in the House. Dr. Sunderland
has long been the Senate chaplain, and takes great inter
est in politics, being, of course, republican in his sympa
thies, with the majority of the Senate; and when the dem
ocrats get control of the body in March next, they will,
no doubt, elect Borne democratic clergyman as his succes
sor. Dr. Sunderland is so earnest in his political senti
ments that he sometimes asks the Almighty to take one
side of a disputed question that may be pending, and has
offended sensitive democrats once in a while, who have,
perhaps, feared a literal answer to his application for Di
vine assistance on the part of the majority.
Charles Sumner was quite outspoken in his dislike to
political prayers, and during the San Domingo agitation in
1872, when- Sumner, Schurz, Fenton and Trumbull were
fightingPresident Grant, DrTSuuderland frequently used to
take advantage of his opportunity to administer to the Sena
tors named a sly dig in the course of his daily devotions
in the Senate, One day, however, he merely recited the
Lord's Prayer to open the proceedings, and as ho came
dowjr from the Vice President's desk Mr. Sumner met
him, took by the hand, and remarked :
Dr. Sunderland, that was a very eloquent prayer you
just offered ; a very beautiful prayer ; a very appropriate
prayer the most appropriate I oyer heard you utter. "
And the great Senator returned to his seat.
Once, during the first session of the Forty-fourth Con
gress, Dr. Sunderland invited a very distinguished New
England divine to officiate in his stead, and "the learned
pundit," flattered by the honor, made a very long prayer,
in which ho took occasion to notify $he Almighty that the
Senate was "weak and unworthy, and full of infirmities, "
and asked that they might be "endowed with more wis
dom, grace, and strength," There was a smile in response
to this suggestion of what might have been truth, whether
intentional or accidental, and Senator McCretcy, of Ken
tucky, who is noted for his jokes, wrote an irreverent, reso
lution which he sent up to tho Clerk's desk. Major Mc
Donald, who is now dead, received it, and, glancing over
the manuscript before commencing to read, saw the con
tents and handed it to 'Senator Ferry, who was acting as
Presiding Officer. Senator Ferry saw the joke, but pre
vented it from being a part of tho records of the Senate by
declaring it out of brer." The resolution, was, however,
passed around among the Senators, and created much
amusement, t was as follows :
""Whereas the person vrho has just left the floor did not
address his remarks to the Presiding' Officer of this body,
but to a Divine Being entirely unknown to the Senate ;
and,
"Whereas the statements contained in his remarks, in al
lusion to tho weakness, unwbrthiness and infirmaties of
this body aro entirely unparliamentary, and a reflection
upon tho Senators of the United Statos and the people rep
resented by them ; therefore, be it
" fiesolvedy That the Committee on Privileges and Elec
tions be, and the same is hereby, authorized and directed
to inquire into the truths of such statements, with power
to send for persons and papers, and to report by bill or
otherwise."
Dr. Sundorlaud was a strong silver advocate, and whon
tho bill to remonitiae silver was pending in tho Senate he
offered what tho Senators called a "bt-motallio prayer,"
as follows :
"Oh God 1 tho silver is Thine, the Gold is Thino, and
the cattle on a thousand hills. We boseooh Thee, oh
Lord, the God of our fathers, with the wealth and rich
ness of Thy bounty, suftor not Thy people to languish."
This nravor attracted marked attention, and reminds
mo of one I heard offered some years ago, at tho Legisla
ture of a "Western State. Said tho chaplain there :
"Bless this assembly, Oh Lord! and tho people thoy
represent Givo them pure hearts, an honost currency,
and sound political principles."
I remember a prayer I heard offered in a Republican
State Convention in Iowa, several years ago. A clergy
man in tho city in which it was being held had been in
vited to officiate, but for some reason failed to keep the
engagement, aud ono of the delegates who was a Baptist
clorgymau, was asked to open tho proceedings. He recog
nized the importance of the occasion, as well as the value
of time, and offered tho following brief, emphatic, direct,
and comprehensive prayer :
"Thou King of hosts! God of the froeman, God of
the bondman, God of liberty, God of justice, God of
grace, descend upon us at this time with Thy dri. c
blessing. Govern this convention with Thine omnipotent
will, fill our hearts with Thy rich grace, and sanctify tho
proceedings of this day with Thy sacred presence. Grant
us wisdom to nominate a good ticket, and make a good
platform. Give us our usual 40,000 majority, and double
it, if in Thine infinite wisdom it shall seem to Thee good.
Amen."
The Early Coinage of Michigan.
In the good old day of Michigan there wasn't any monoy
to speak of floating around from hand to hand. When a
householder wanted meal, he scraped half dozen coon skins
together and made a trade. If he wanted meat, he killed
it; and if there was need of whisky, it was a very poor man
who couldn' t find a wildcat bill or a bogus half dollar down
iu his pockets.
One day a circuit preacher, hunting for a place in wrhich
to speak to tho dozen or twenty settlers in Oakland county,
halted at a forlorn-looking cabin besido the trail and asked
for dinner. The squatter's wife extended a very cordial
welcome, aud said:
"It's lucky you come along to-day, as I have trot a new
bag of meal, lots of sassafras for coffee, and some of the
best coon mutton you ever tasted of. Go down to the
ditch and wash up, and I'll have the dinner ready in ten
minutes."
When the preacher returned ho began lamenting the
hard times, and the fact that he hadnt seen the sight of
monoy for several weeks. He was cheerfully trying to do
good, but he frankly confessed that ho could do much bet
ter if he could now and then hear the jingle of money in
his trousers' pocket. The woman looked wise, but made
no reply, and by and by the good man resumed his jour
ney. His horse was picking his way along the trail, about
three miles from tho cabin, when a native, six feet high
uu atiireu m eoun-MKiu cap, mcKory smrc, ana inaian leg
gings, came after'him on the run, yelling out:
"You thar ! whoa ! hold on, you I"
When he came up he asked:
"Are you the traveling Bible who halted back there for
dinner and eat up a whole coon?"
"I am a circuit rider, and halted back there, and eat
more or less of a big hunk of delicious meat' answered
the good man. '
"And didn't you tell my wife you were dead broke for
cash?"
"I intimated, as I now recollect, that I was not burdened
with any great amount of cash."
"Well, my wife is the most infernal old bard blow in
the territory, and I'm the meanest liar in the diggihs, but
yet we must keep'religibn b'iling. I got home just aa you
left, and when she told me about your being hard up, I
went to work on the jump and molded you these sis half
dollar pieces. There's a leetle too much lead in 'em, but
if you are careful to wipe 'em on your coat-tail now and
then, they will pass on anybody except a land-broker 1"
Some legends say that the preacher didnH take them;
but legends are not always reliable.
Romas' Pedigree.
A person more remarkable for inquisitiyness than good
breeding one of those who, devoid of delicacy and reck
less of rebuff, pry into everything took the liberty to
question Alexander Dumas, rather closely concerning his
genealogical tree. "You are a quadroon, Mr. Dumas?"
he began. "I am, sir, " replied Mr. Dumas, who had seen
enough not to be ashamed of a decent he could not conceal.
And your father?" "Was a mulatto." "Andyctur
grandfather ?" "A negro, ' ' hastily answered tho drama
tist, whospatience was waning. "And may I inquire
what your Vgreat grand fatherwas?" "An ape, Sir 1"
thundere&Dumas, with a fierceness that made bis im
pertinent interrogator-shrink into the smallest possible
compass, " an ape, Sir I My podigree commences where
yours torminaies. ' ' t
An Iowa clergyman boasts that ho can marry twenty
couples in an hour. Twenty kuots an hour is pretty good
speed for a clergyman to make.
"WW '
When Prayers Avail.
An old darkey who was asked, if, in his experience,
prayer was ever answered, replied : ".Well, sah, some
pra'ers is ausud and some lsn'-'pends on w'at you axes
lo' ; jest arter de wah, we'on it was mighty hard scratch
in fo' de culled breddon, I 'bsarveddatw'enobberlpway
de Lo'd to send one o' Marse Peyton's fat turkeys fo' d
ole man, dare was no notice took o' do partition ; but
wo'en I pway dat ho would sen' do olo man fp'.de turkey,
do matter was 'tended to befo' sun up nex' mornin', dead
sartin."
aw
An honest Hibernian, in recommending a cow, said she
would give milk year after year without having calves.
"Because ," said he, "it runs in tho brade j for she came
of a cow that nevor had a calf.
"See here," said an oocontrio old man to an office-boy
who had brought a doctor's bill to him "see hore: tell
your master that I'll pay him for tho items of inedibine
charged in this bill, but as for tho visits, why nfroturn
them,"
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