July 1

July First

A SOUTHERN SOLDIER'S TRIBUTE

To the Union commander, General George Gordon Meade, history will accord the honor of having handled his army at Gettysburg with unquestioned ability. The record and the results of the battle entitle him to a high place among Union leaders. To him and to his able subordinates and heroic men is due the credit of having successfully met and repelled the Army of Northern Virginia in the meridian of its hope and confidence and power.

General John B. Gordon

 

First day at Gettysburg, 1863

 

 

July 1, 1863

Wednesday. Nothing happened at our house last night, although we were ready for visitors or to go visiting at the shortest possible notice. It is reported that a part of the Sixth Michigan got into the water battery last night and brought out a rebel captain with them, and without loss on their part. The enemy are reported gathering in our rear. They captured General Dow and George Story yesterday. We are sorry about George, but no one feels very sorry about the general. A man from the right says General Banks made a speech to the storming party last night, and promised them that Port Hudson would be taken inside of the next three days.

Well, here it is the first day of July! Who would think it? We have been fighting two months, and the time (July 4th), set by thousands for the downfall of the Confederate capital is close at hand, yet it cannot be taken by that time. Still I have no doubt there are thousands at the North who are expecting to hear of its capture, and perhaps many who are foolish enough to believe that it will surely fall on July 4th. I have no doubt but what it will fall before another summer, but it will take time and hard fighting, and many a poor fellow on both sides will bite the dust first; wonder if all think of this? Many never think of anything till it happens, they are too selfish; remained all day in the position we took up last night, but just at night we moved a quarter of a mile to the front and formed line of battle.

July 1st

A few days ago I saw a native wedding. At about nine in the evening I was disturbed by a noise of drums and squeaking trumpets. Looking out of the window, I saw a large party with torches conducting the bride to her husband's home. She was entirely covered by a white veil, and walked in the midst of her relations.

I went to pay a visit to the Newab, a native prince of these parts, but did not succeed in obtaining an interview. He is about fifteen years of age, and generally goes out in a carriage drawn by seven horses. His uncles ride by his side on elephants, while his cousins run with the carriage.

The natives are a fine athletic race of men, with every appearance of possessing talent and intellect. The tricks of the jugglers are very entertaining: they will swallow swords, throw up three or four knives or cannon-balls, and catch them on their necks, and pull balls of cotton out of their throats, and make snakes dance.

July 1

July 1, 1880. (Three o'clock ).--The temperature is oppressive; I ought to be looking over my notes, and thinking of to-morrow's examinations. Inward distaste--emptiness--discontent. Is it trouble of conscience, or sorrow of heart? or the soul preying upon itself? or merely a sense of strength decaying and time running to waste? Is sadness--or regret--or fear--at the root of it? I do not know; but this dull sense of misery has danger in it; it leads to rash efforts and mad decisions. Oh, for escape from self, for something to stifle the importunate voice of want and yearning! Discontent is the father of temptation. How can we gorge the invisible serpent hidden at the bottom of our well--gorge it so that it may sleep?

At the heart of all this rage and vain rebellion there lies--what? Aspiration, yearning! We are athirst for the infinite--for love--for I know not what. It is the instinct of happiness, which, like some wild animal, is restless for its prey. It is God calling-God avenging himself.

July 1

July 1, 1856.--A man and still more a woman, always betrays something of his or her nationality. The women of Russia, for instance, like the lakes and rivers of their native country, seem to be subject to sudden and prolonged fits of torpor. In their movement, undulating and caressing like that of water, there is always a threat of unforeseen frost. The high latitude, the difficulty of life, the inflexibility of their autocratic régime, the heavy and mournful sky, the inexorable climate, all these harsh fatalities have left their mark upon the Muscovite race. A certain somber obstinacy, a kind of primitive ferocity, a foundation of savage harshness which, under the influence of circumstances, might become implacable and pitiless; a cold strength, an indomitable power of resolution which would rather wreck the whole world than yield, the indestructible instinct of the barbarian tribe, perceptible in the half-civilized nation, all these traits are visible to an attentive eye, even in the harmless extravagances and caprices of a young woman of this powerful race. Even in their badinage they betray something of that fierce and rigid nationality which burns its own towns and [as Napoleon said] keeps battalions of dead soldiers on their feet.

What terrible rulers the Russians would be if ever they should spread the night of their rule over the countries of the south! They would bring us a polar despotism, tyranny such as the world has never known, silent as darkness, rigid as ice, insensible as bronze, decked with an outer amiability and glittering with the cold brilliancy of snow, a slavery without compensation or relief. Probably, however, they will gradually lose both the virtues and the defects of their semi-barbarism. The centuries as they pass will ripen these sons of the north, and they will enter into the concert of peoples in some other capacity than as a menace or a dissonance. They have only to transform their hardiness into strength, their cunning into grace, their Muscovitism into humanity, to win love instead of inspiring aversion or fear.

Tegernsee July 1, 1880

... I hope you have not many correspondents as unmerciful as I am, or as much inclined to forget that you are living the most interesting of lives, by the intensest blaze of light in all the world. Only let me just thank you for your letter of yesterday and for your kindness in asking me to future entertainments. My prospects are too uncertain for me to accept. I must come only if I am wanted, and we shall hardly have any close divisions of importance until the end of July. Your invitations have doubled in value since Reay, whose particular group of friends is so well known as to betray him to the worst of guessers, has supplied you with a key—a false key—to my Venetian Mystery.

Don't get tired too easily of London and its duties, for they are very real. They will not get on without you. And it is of no use coming over, if you are away on all kinds of larks.

We must wait till Sunday before the result of this evening's debate reaches Tegernsee. There is not any doubt the motion[30 ] is right; but I can imagine a much stronger statement of objections than the righteous indignation of the Tories produced.

Let us hope that John Morley was not discouraged by encountering Sweet Cæsar's ghost on Tuesday. The Pall Mall  is getting a little personal, and too highly coloured in reports of fact. Do you know my intimate friend Lathbury, political editor of the Economist ? A Weekly is easier to conduct than a Daily; but his articles seem to me excellent in tone, judgment, and impartiality. He wrote much formerly in the Daily News  and the Pall Mall, and I was negotiating with Delane to put him on the Times  when Bagehot's death gave him the other opening. His wife was Bonamy Price's daughter. You never saw a man more frank, cheery, and well-conditioned.

I suppose Hayward has brought ——. Let him bring Chenery, that he may be useful as well as ornamental. It is not a matter of indifference that, when other journalists come, he should be left to stay away. Only don't let his sins be cast in his teeth.

I am afraid you will not take to Morier; but he is the greatest force in our diplomatic service, in spite of his discomfiture at Lisbon. He would be the very man to meet Challemel Lacour, who will be an offence to so many.

Liddon repeated at Munich the story of Carnarvon. He also gave the excuse which I suggested—that Chamberlain, Fawcett, Dilke alarmed him. But it is not a pretty story as he tells it, considering the way Carnarvon turned against the new Ministry.

[30 ] That any member claiming the right to affirm instead of taking an oath should be allowed to do so, subject to any liability imposed on him by statute. Under this motion Mr. Bradlaugh took his seat provisionally for Northampton.

4. John Adams

York, 1 July, 1774.

I am so idle that I have not an easy moment without my pen in my hand. My time might have been improved to some purpose in mowing grass, raking hay, or hoeing corn, weeding carrots, picking or shelling pease. Much better should I have been employed in schooling my children, in teaching them to write, cipher, Latin, French, English, and Greek.

I sometimes think I must come to this—to be the foreman upon my own farm and the schoolmaster to my own children. I confess myself to be full of fears that the ministry and their friends and instruments will prevail, and crush the cause and friends of liberty. The minds of that party are so filled with prejudices against me that they will take all advantages, and do me all the damage they can. These thoughts have their turns in my mind, but in general my hopes are predominant.

Dr. Gardiner, arrived here to-day from Boston, brings us news of a battle at the town meeting, between Whigs and Tories, in which the Whigs, after a day and a half's obstinate engagement, were finally victorious by two to one. He says the Tories are preparing a flaming protest.

I am determined to be cool, if I can. I have suffered such torments in my mind heretofore as have almost overpowered my constitution, without any advantage. And now I will laugh and be easy if I can, let the contest of parties terminate as it will, let my own estate and interest suffer what it will, nay, whether I stand high or low in the estimation of the world, so long as I keep a conscience void of offense towards God and man. And this I am determined by the will of God to do, let what will become of me or mine, my country or the world.

I shall arouse myself erelong, I believe, and exert an industry, a frugality, a hard labor, that will serve my family, if I can't serve my country. I will not lie down in despair. If I cannot serve my children by the law, I will serve them by agriculture, by trade, by some way or other. I thank God I have a head, and heart, and hands, which, if once fully exerted altogether, will succeed in the world as well as those of the mean-spirited, low-minded, fawning, obsequious scoundrels who have long hoped that my integrity would be an obstacle in my way, and enable them to outstrip me in the race.

But what I want in comparison of them of villainy and servility, I will make up in industry and capacity. If I don't, they shall laugh and triumph. I will not willingly see blockheads, whom I have a right to despise, elevated above me and insolently triumphing over me. Nor shall knavery, through any negligence of mine, get the better of honesty, nor ignorance of knowledge, nor folly of wisdom, nor vice of virtue.

I must entreat you, my dear partner in all the joys and sorrows, prosperity and adversity of my life, to take a part with me in the struggle. I pray God for your health—entreat you to rouse your whole attention to the family, the stock, the farm, the dairy. Let every article of expense which can possibly be spared be retrenched; keep the hands attentive to their business, and the most prudent measures of every kind be adopted and pursued with alacrity and spirit.