Things to Come (April 14, 1863)

The saga of the sword presentation continues. (See the entry for April 5).  I especially like the way Meade expresses his “horror at the prospect of being made a lion.” In his last line he hints at things to come, as he prepares for the movement that will lead to the battle of Chancellorsville.

Major General Joseph Hooker (Library of Congress).

Major General Joseph Hooker (Library of Congress).

Yesterday I received a letter asking me to appoint a day to receive the sword, etc. I referred it to General Hooker, who replied that it was entirely out of the question, my being absent at this time, and recommending the postponement of the presentation, which I accordingly wrote to the committee. I am just as well satisfied, for I looked with great horror at the prospect of being made a lion, and having to roar for the benefit of outsiders. I trust now they will come quietly down here, make the presentation, and let me send the sword back to you, for it is too precious to carry in the field.

I have been busy all day making preparations for the march.

Meade’s letter taken from The Life and Letters of George Gordon Meade, Major-General United States Army, Vol. 1, (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1913), pp. 366. Available via Google Books.

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