Press Release of William L. Clay, Retired Member of U.S. House of Representatives to Members of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC)

Dear CBC Member:

As aggressive crusaders in the struggle to make America what it proclaims to be in terms of living up to the slogan “All men are created equal,” I am sure you are as appalled as I by the decision of Hampton University to honor former President George H.W. Bush with a statue on its campus.   What a `giant step’ backward in the fight to correct the unfortunate, disgraceful, and distorted history of the effort of African Americans to achieve parity in the country’s social, political and economic life.

The mere fact that the president of Hampton University and his top advisors would commission such a shameful project must be challenged by the strong voices of African Americans in Congress and allies across the nation.    

What a tragedy!  Recently, when former President Bush passed and those in charge of creating images of super heroes, one fact was  quite obvious.  In the month long campaign to canonize him for sainthood, there was a deliberate omission of any truthful relationship of him and civil rights.

 Therefore, I am calling upon Congressional Black Caucus members to lead the way in exposing the hypocrisy of celebrating George H.W. Bush as a true representative of “All the People”.

I must remind you that President Bush’s record on civil rights was one of the worst in the history of U.S. Presidents.  For three decades in public service, he refused to come face-to-face with his paradoxical conflict of duplicity in matters of race.  He steadfastly and vigorously opposed any specific proposal to ameliorate the inequitable, bigoted treatment of black citizens.


Hampton’s President Dr. William R. Harvey said, “I believe in giving people their credit when it is due.  President Bush was an extraordinary person who believed it was crucial that African Americans have access to education. I think that’s something that we must acknowledge”.  

These are only words of praise that are very much contradicted by the Record.  It is possible to cite one or two instances that he was involved in on the fringe of an issue that benefited black people. Those who argue Bush was not a racist, and did not hate black people—might also consider what others have surmised–but he believed every household should own one.             


1.    He never met a civil rights measure he could support without  qualified reservation.  Legislative initiatives and administrative dictums devised to alleviate oppressive conditions of segregation and discrimination were always sufficiently flawed, in his opinion, to justify objecting to the remedy.

2.    Bush vetoed a major civil rights bill in 1990 and the Bill fell one vote short of override in the Senate.  The measure would have restored four major civil rights laws prohibiting discrimination on the basis gender, disability and age.

3.         In the 1960s, television networks extensively covered brutalizing events, exposing the savagery of white mobs attacking helpless Negroes with bricks, clubs and dogs.  

Bush ignored the mayhem and blamed the Supreme Court decision in Brown v. the Board of Education and `forced busing’ for precipitating the violence. 

4.    The most far-reaching, racially-oriented legislation in modern history, was enactment of the 1964 Civil Rights Act.  Six years after it became law, Bush opposed the measure with missionary zeal.  Appealing to the bigotry of white voters in a Texas campaign for the U.S. Senate, Bush repeatedly stated, “The Act was passed to protect 14 percent of the population.  I’m also worried about the other 86 percent”.

5.     When peaceful marches and other non-violent protests by blacks demanding the right to register and vote, he voiced no sympathy for their cause.  Millions of television viewers looked on in horror as police billy-clubbed black adults as they peacefully demonstrated for the right to vote.  City firemen, in their official capacity, sprayed elementary school children with high-pressure water hoses for supporting the registration drive.       Yet, Bush, seemingly oblivious to the injustice, vigorously opposed the 1965 Voting Right Act, which was designed to guarantee the right of all to participate in the electoral process.           


In Bush’s legal lexicon, widespread harassment, intimidation, and physical violence preventing blacks from registering and voting was insufficient to justifying federal intervention into rights he claimed reserved to the states.

Bush rationalized that blacks did not need federal supervision to insure their ability to register and vote.  He ignored reality.  In Dallas County, Alabama, a community just outside the city limits of Selma, with a population of 29,515 adults, of whom 14,400 were white and 15,115 were black, but only 383 blacks were registered compared to 8,216 whites.  Nor was he moved to indignation by the slogan of the Alabama Democratic Party that endorsed his candidacy:  “the Party of white supremacy.”


Describing Bush’s 1968 vote for the Fair Housing Act as a profile in courage that jeopardized his chance for reelection is grossly distorted political hyperbole.  In fact, he voted for passage only after unsuccessfully leading an effort to kill the bill.  Arguing the Act unfair, he challenged the authority of Congress to impose restrictions on realtors and home-owners. 

The House of Representatives passed a bill aimed at protecting civil rights workers who were being beaten, gassed and killed for trying to register black voters and to desegregate public schools.   After its passage the Senate Judiciary Committee held hearings and the full Senate attached the FAIR HOUSING PROVISION. 

To appease those who opposed fair housing, an anti-rioting amendment (which was pushed by Bush in the House) was accepted.  The action was specifically aimed at H. Rap Brown and other black leaders whose incendiary speeches incited blacks to riot in numerous cities.  The bill provided criminal penalties for anyone convicted of traveling in interstate commerce or using the mails, telephone, telegraph, radio or television with the intent `to incite, organize, or encourage a riot.”

The 1965 riots of Watts, Los Angeles lasted 6 days, left 34 persons dead, 1,000 wounded, and more than 4,000 arrested.   Then the violent summer of 1967 saw riots in Newark (killing 23, wounding 1,500) and in Detroit (killing 43, wounding 2,000). 

In that atmosphere, the House was presented a bill calling for fair housing as well as Bush’s version of making it a federal crime to cross state lines for the purpose of inciting violence. 

Bush found the fair housing legislation distasteful and politically uncomfortable.  Caught between the proverbial rock and hard place, he dared not oppose the highly emotional and popularly driven effort to pass anti-rioting legislation, but the fair housing amendment fit his obsessive complaint about civil rights promotion always being at the wrong time and in the wrong place.


 Irritated and frustrated by the housing provision, Bush petitioned the House Rules Committee to order separate votes on the two issues.  It was generally speculated that the House would reject a specific vote for fair housing.  The Rules Committee denied his request.  Then Mr. Bush offered his proposal to the full House and it too was rejected.  Bush’s timing was horrible and insensitive. 

Six days before the scheduled vote, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was murdered in Memphis, Tennessee.  Within 72 hours, fiery uprisings erupted in 125 cities and civil unrest broke out on 50 college campuses.  The U.S. Army and the National Guard found themselves pitted against an army of black insurrectionists with little respect for the property rights of the privileged class.

White America was in a state of peril, appall, confusion, and bewilderment.    For three days and three nights, Washington, D.C., the capital of the free world, burned.  Dark clouds of smoke belched from fires lit in front of the President’s residence and surrounding neighborhoods.  Marines in sand-bagged bunkers and mounted machine guns protected the White House. 

Under these conditions there was no way that Bush was going to convince House members to vote against the Fair Housing legislation.

6.  As President, Bush opposed the extension of the Voting Rights Act, vetoed a major civil rights bill expanding protection against employment discrimination, sought to overturn five Supreme Court decisions that altered prevailing interpretations of Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act.


7.  The most egregious and most damaging act of Bush’s entire career was the nomination of Clarence Thomas to the U.S. Supreme Court.                        

Bush’s flowery introduction of the erstwhile nominee calling him the most qualified in the country was political speech that enlarged truth beyond the normal limits of intelligent acceptance.  Describing Thomas as a fiercely `independent thinker’ with an `excellent legal mind’, insulted those who had personally engaged Thomas in the fight for compliance and enforcement of established civil rights laws.  Those who followed his career closely were able to decode the words “independent thinker” in referring to people like Thomas.  It meant as defined by conservatives that he had no ideas, no positions and no statements that were “independent” of those dictated by the brain trust advising the Republican hierarchy.

The surprise selection of Thomas baffled even the most cynical, sending shock waves shooting across the wrinkled brows of congressmen, civil rights advocates, women activists, senior citizens, and civil libertarians.  They who had battled Thomas’ slipshod, slapstick disregard for enforcing equal rights were emotionally traumatized with the possibility of an individual that had shown utter contempt of mandated law would sit on the high a position. 

Clarence Thomas was in the forefront of attacks on affirmative action, criticizing leaders of the CBC and the civil rights organizations for promoting policies that recommended reasonable accommodation of past racial discrimination in hiring and the awarding of contracts.

Despite almost total rejection of Thomas’ philosophy and politics by the most respected African American leaders, and longtime white supporters of civil rights, a majority in the media and a substantial number of white Americans persisted in portraying him a spokesman of black people.

8. The Congressional Black Caucus Foundation (CBCF) confronted President Bush on Thomas’ legal qualification and questioned his commitment to racial equality.  The CBCF, in a lengthy document gave overwhelming justification why Americans should oppose the nomination of Clarence Thomas.  

I stated on the House floor: “Thomas’ preemptive attack on affirmative action lacks merit…His motive is dubious and his sincerity doubtful.  It’s a perversion of justice to advocate its elimination without offering a viable alternative.    

My statement was in conjunction and agreement with the expressed opinions of other Congressional Black Caucus members.       

Congressman John Lewis (D-Ga.) testified, “Thomas wants to destroy the bridge that brought him over troubled waters!  He wants to pull down the ladder that he climbed up.” 

Congressman Major Owens (D-NY.) said, “Clarence Thomas has clearly and consistently stood against those legal principles, philosophies, and ideas which are vitally necessary for Black survival”.  Congressman Louis Stokes (D-Oh.) testified, “The difference between Thomas and most Black Americans most have not forgotten from whence they have come”.

Yes, Dr. William R. Harvey, President H.W. Bush you have a right to recognize extraordinary persons and to give them their due.  Unfortunately, your choice of Bush as one of those persons–flies in the face of historical truth and his horrendous record. 

Finally, you the members of the CBC who are the most legitimate voices in the country for protecting the rights and advancements of African Americans cannot sit silently by and let another exaggerated distortion of black history go unchallenged.   

Ohio Congressman Proposes to Prohibit Confederate Monuments – May 24, 1890

Alexandria Gazette, p.2

And so an Ohio republican Congressman thinks the exhibition of Confederate flags and the erection of Confederate monuments in the South must be prohibited, and is consulting his colleagues about the advisablllity of introducing a resolution to that effect in the U.S. House of Representatives. If he shall, it will probably be adopted, and be followed by another, prohibiting Dixey[sp.] and other southern songs from being sung, and gray cloth from being worn, throughout the limits of the South. Well, the South has stood worse things. After awhile restrictions will be put upon northern democracy. When judges are removed because their decisions are not in accord with the policy of the President, and when U.S. vessels are sent to take possession of southern towns, and their marines to search southern homes, nothing else that may be done under a republican form of government can be surprising. It is what the republicans don’t do that evokes the emotion of surprise.

Alexandria Monument Honors Murderer

An additional name, that of James W. Jackson, was added to the east side of the Alexandria Confederate Monument in 1900. Jackson, a civilian, was actually Alexandria’s first Civil War casualty, dying before any of the soldiers with whose names his is inscribed. An ardent secessionist, Jackson was the innkeeper of the Marshall House Hotel. In April 1861, he had hoisted Alexandria’s first Confederate flag over his establishment and vowed to blow to bits any Yankee who interfered with it. On the morning of May 24, 1861, as 24-year-old Colonel Elmer Ellsworth of the 11th New York Infantry marched through the occupied town, he noticed the flag. With a detail of comrades, he left the column, entered the hotel, climbed the stairs, and tore it down. True to his word, Jackson shot Ellsworth dead, only to be killed himself by another Zouave. It was said that Ellworth’s and Jackson’s blood ran together down the steps. Today a bronze plaque on the southeast corner of Pitt and King Streets, just a few blocks from the Confederate statue, marks the spot where both men died.

Testament to Union: Civil War Monuments in Washington, Part 3, page 178
by: Kathryn Allamong Jacobs

Virginia Committee Kills Bill to Allow Local Control of Confederate Monuments

Sen. Jennifer Wexton (D)

Senate Bill 444, the Memorial for Veterans bill, introduced in the Virginia Senate by Senator Jennifer T. Wexton:

Provides that a locality may remove, relocate, or alter a war monument or memorial, regardless of when erected.

The Committee on Local Government, comprised of 7 Republicans and 6 Democrats voted along party lines to “Pass by indefinitely” Wexton’s bill.  The 7 Republicans voting to kill the bill were Senators Stanley, Hanger, DeSteph, Dunnavant, Chase, Sturtevant, and Carrico.  Voting “no” on the motion to kill the bill were Democrats Marsden, Favola, Lewis, Surovell, McPike, and McClellan.

SB 444 would have stricken language passed in the Virginia legislature in 1890.

If such are erected, it shall be unlawful for the authorities of the locality, or any other person or persons, to disturb or interfere with any monuments or memorials so erected, or to prevent its citizens from taking proper measures and exercising proper means for the protection, preservation and care of same. For purposes of this section, “disturb or interfere with” includes removal of, damaging or defacing monuments or memorials, or, in the case of the War Between the States, the placement of Union markings or monuments on previously designated Confederate memorials or the placement of Confederate markings or monuments on previously designated Union memorials.

Wexton, a Democrat, represents parts of Fairfax and Loudon counties, and was elected to the Virginia Senate in 2014. Wexton is a candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives in 2018, challenging the incumbent, Republican Barbara Comstock.

The Myth of the Kindly General Lee – The Atlantic

Removal of Lee Statue

Read the great article, The Myth of the Kindly General Lee, in the June 4, 2017 post on The Atlantic website, by Adam Serwer. Serwer offers several great points to refute the assertion that Confederate General Robert E. Lee was a great and honorable man as his supporters so often claim.

In Lee’s own words, in an 1856 letter, argues that blacks are better off in slavery than they were in their native Africa.

I think it however a greater evil to the white man than to the black race, & while my feelings are strongly enlisted in behalf of the latter, my sympathies are more strong for the former. The blacks are immeasurably better off here than in Africa, morally, socially & physically. The painful discipline they are undergoing, is necessary for their instruction as a race, & I hope will prepare & lead them to better things. How long their subjugation may be necessary is known & ordered by a wise Merciful Providence. Their emancipation will sooner result from the mild & melting influence of Christianity, than the storms & tempests of fiery Controversy.

Hiding History

I recently found a copy of a brochure, The Confederate Statue, distributed by the Office of Historic Alexandria.  If I understand the coding at the bottom of the brochure, it was created in November, 2002.

The brochure compiles a number of reported facts related to the creation of the monument, including the names attached to its various sides.

I found one paragraph particularly interesting:

The name of James W. Jackson, the proprietor of the Marshall House who was killed on May 24, 1861, during the occupation of the city, was added to the east side of the statue in 1900.

James W Jackson

I find it interesting that the brochure omits the fact that Jackson was killed immediately after his murder of a U.S. Soldier, Colonel Elmer Ellsworth at the Marshall House.

Why would the city of Alexandria permit a murderer to be honored with a statue, and then neglect to mention it in the brochure they create to give background on the monument?




Marshall House Plaque

Raleigh T Daniel Reportedly the Model for the Appomattox Statue

Notes: Alexandria Gazette, May 24, 1889

It is said Mr. Elder, when he painted “Appomattox,” from which the statue erected today was designed, took the head of Mr. Raleigh T. Daniel for the model.

As you will recall from an earlier post, Daniel was one of the guest speakers at the dedication of the confederate monument, and was chosen to represent the artist, Elder, and the sculptor, Buberl. You can read the entirety of Daniel’s speech here.

Speech of Captain R. Travers Daniel on Dedication of Alexandria’s Confederate Monument

Mr Chairman, Gentlemen of the Committee, My Countrymen :

We are gathered together today to commemorate the deeds of some of the unknown heroes of our soil, unknown to the world at large; their memory circumscribed by the narrow circle of personal acquaintance and local tradition.

They belong to that grand army that sleeps in the bivouac of the dead throughout our State awaiting the universal reveille to answer at the final roll call for the deeds done in the body. This host cannot be enumerated or individualized, and standing upon consecrated ground, where the bones of thousands repose marked only by wooden slabs surmounted by numerals stamped in zinc for epitaphs, we must render our homage to them en masse, as we regard with awe and admiration the countless billows of the sea. Their resolute endurance and matchless valor have served to fill the trump of Fame with the few great names that resound throughout the world, and will go sounding down the ages, while they themselves have been content to discharge their duty to their country and their God, to die and be forgotten of men.

And so it has ever been. Leonidas won imperishable renown at Thermopole, but the names of his devoted Spartan band ‘ perished with themselves in that dread slaughter. When the Imperial eagles of France swept victorious over the battle fields of Europe, the World stood amazed and dazzled by the military genius of him who reflected glory on his satellite marshals, while his soldiers fell with the wild acclaim upon their dying lips? “Vive I’ Empreur! Vive la France!” and sank into nameless graves. You marble shaft that towers above our national Capital, piercing the empyrean, reminds us daily of that paragon of men, of whom a gifted eulogist of the North has aptly said — his mental and moral attributes were so justly poised, that his character reminded him of a perfect circle, all points of the ‘circumference being equi-distant from the centre;’ but where is the muster-roll of Valley Forge; who were the men of the line that shared his triumph at Yorktown?

Much as this is to be regretted is inevitable. The night is made glorious by the starry firmament on high, yet of the myriads of these planets we can but single out the most luminous to name them; they pale their ineffectual fires before the broad beams of the queen of night, while she in turn disappears in the effulgence of the morning sun. And so the modest efforts of the multitude fade before the inspiration of genius. It is then eminently commondablo to raise this cenotaph — to make this effort to rescue from oblivion the memory of these men, who consecrated their lives, their fortunes, and the worldly interests of those nearest and dearest to them to tho most sacred cause that can animate the human breast; save and except tho salvation of the immortal soul — the cause whose principles will survive until free government proves to be a failure, until the Republic is subverted and superseded by despotism. They died in defence of “their altars and their fires,” and the right of their people to self-appointed constitutional government; they engaged in no war of conquest, they sought to ravish no foreign homes, they desired to depart in peace. They were incited by the same spirit that inspired Washington, Jefferson, Henry, Hamilton, Hancock, and their confreres to guide to a successful issue the great rebellion of the last century, and to crown it as a revolution. And only those who are blinded by passion and sectional prejudice will fail to perceive the analogy. The independence of the colonies being thus established it was deemed wise and prudent to form a compact for mutual defence and support: and we all know in what throes and convulsions that government was born, and with what protracted reluctance some of the colonies contributed to it, at all. The prophetic ken of the wisest discerned the elements of strife that ultimately rent the Union asunder. Virginia ratified the Constitution with hesitating pen in one hand, and in the other the Bill of Rights, reserving to herself all powers not expressly delegated to the Federal Government. And I challenge today the indication of a single line of that instrument inhibiting the Southern States from the course and the measures they in their majesty thought proper to adopt.

Nevertheless, it is safe to affirm that in 1861, when the dim cloud of war loomed up in the North and came sweeping towards the South, there was no section of this broad continent more ardently attached to the Federal Government than Virginia. With generous heart and lavish hand she dedicated an empire of territory to its uses, her statesmen and philosophers had shaped the thought and legislation of the country, her military commanders  had shed upon the brief page of its history a lustre that shewn throughout tho world, the pride and traditions of the present generation were bound up in the Union.

The convention that assembled to deliberate upon the impending crisis  revealed an overwhelming Union sentiment; the debato was long and earnest, calm and dignified. And not until a President installed by a sectional minority commanded her to supply a quota of 75,000 troops to aid in subjugating her sister State of the South with whom she was in perfect sympathy, and proclaimed the determination to march through her territory for that purpose, did Virginia annul the Federal compact. Then, and not until then, her bugle sounded from the Atlantic to the Alleghanies, echoing in every clime where her people sojourned, and her sons afar and near sprung to arms with unexampled alacrity and devotion. Students and artists in Europe, pioneers in the far West, merchants abroad for pleasure or profit, soldiers in the United States Army, and sailors in its Navy, dropped their present occupations and harkened to the summons. Raphael Semmes of the navy, J. E. B Stuart, that preux chevalier of cavalry, Joseph E.Johnston, high in Federal command, bound by every tie of interest and life-long association to the government, casting a lingering look of affection to the star spangled banner hastened to place themselves side by side with many  others similarly situated under the stars and bars, the emblem of a nation newly born in the panoply of war, like Minerva springing  full armed from tho head of Jove. Thomas J. Jackson walked from the lecture room at the Virginia Military Institute, where he looked to pass the remainder of his life in the education of youth, took down the sword which, under the victorious folds of the star and stripes, had flashed in the face of the Mexican foe, and brought it to his mother Virginia. Robert E. Lee, putting aside the proffer of supreme command of the confident and imperious invader turned to walk the path of duty and defeat, and to achieve fame that, blazons through the world, compelling respect and admiration from the bitterest foe.

Then a nation of freemen surged to the front, and the most splendid army that ever marched to victory, unsullied by levy or conscription, stood, to arms upon their native soil. It is needless to i rehearse the long and desperate struggle that ensued. It is familiar to us all. But this has been  stigmatized as “rebellion.”

“Rebellion! foul dishonoring word,
Whose wrongful blight so oft hath stained
The holiest cause that tongue or sword
Of mortals ever lost or gained.
How many a  spirit born to bless
Hath sunk beneath that withering name,
Whom but a day’s? — an hour’s success
Had wafted to eternal fame!”

But what manner of rebellion was this? Rebellion by whom, and against whom? Rebellion of the Creator against creature? A nation living under a written constitution, with all the autonomy of organized governments and an army in the field to defend it, may be defeated but cannot rebel. Poland was wiped from the roll of nations by the mailed hand of power, but freedom did not die with Kosciusko. Treason that was “to be made odious.

My friends, the cause cannot be made odious, for which a million Christian women suffered famine for four long years, and gave up their dear ones to slaughter, while their constant prayers ascended like incense to Almighty God for its success, the cause whose exponents and exemplars were such men as Stuart, and Johnston and Jackson, and Lee, and cx-President Jefferson Davis. Clarum et venerabile women!

It is a moral and mental contradiction to charge that these men of unquestioned purity and ability, could confederate iu a heinous crime. Nor do those who make the charge believe it, and I want no stronger evidence that these injurious terms are merely employcd as a shibboleth of hatred and vituperation than the fact that when the Southern cause was overwhelmed by unlimited resources and countless numbers, and these representative men were in the absolute power of the victor, he did not dare to execute them as traitors, because it would have shocked the moral sense of the civilized world, and history would have recorded the names of the perpetrators of the outrage upon the roll of infamy and upon the same page with Carnot, Marat, and Robespierre.

I have deemed it meet and appropriate to the occasion to reiterate these sentiments, so often expressed before, in vindication of our dead comrades and in justification of the survivors, who have no apologies or retractions to make for the part they played in that bloody drama, which had a continent for a stage and the world for an audience. But the contest can never be revived by force of arms. The civil and political questions involved were submitted to the arbitrament of the sword, with disastrous result to us, and we are content to let the dead past bury its dead, and turn our faces towards the living duties of the present and the future. And it is a matter o! general congratulation that as time wears on and the passions engendered by the war subside into cooler judgment, as social and commercial intercourse between sections of the country are cultivated more than ever  before, the motives on either side are better understood and more generally appreciated; that the aspersions and imprecations cast upon the southern people are confined to a narrowing circle of self-seeking politicians and rabid enthusiasts, most of whom are citizens in time of war aud warriors in time of peace. And let me say here that it remains for the people of the North to mako this a homogenous and harmonious nation. Let us hope then that in the near future impertinent intermedling of one section with the domestic affairs of another will cease — that all vindictive legisiatiou will be wiped from the statute book until not one individual will remain disfranchised — not one will stand an alien in the land of his birth — not one who may not greet the emblem of his country with the fond acclaim —

Forever float that standard sheet!
Where stands the foe but falls before us, 
With freedom’s soil beneath our feet
And freedom’s banner waving o’er us!

I will not further trench upon the province of the gifted orator and soldier who is to succeed me, and who is the high priest of these ceremonies. He will enlarge upon this theme with his characteristic eloquence and enthusiasm. But I could not pass the shrine of my devotion without casting my votive offering.

I have the honor to be the spokesman of the two, distinguished artists, whose combined genius has produced the work of art we are here to dedicate. I was selected by them for no aptitude that I possess for the pleasing task assigned me, but because of my ardent sympathy with the subject and our personal friendship of many years.

Although acting as their mouthpiece I shall take the liberty to refer to them in terms that may shock their modesty, but fall far beneath their merits.

The name of John A. Elder will fall familiarly upon the ears of many of this audience. Born and reared in the historic town of Fredericksburg, he early evinced that bent of genius which in maturer years has made him the great battle painter of the South. When but a youth he repaired to Dusseldorf, at that time one of the most renowned schools of art in Europe, and there he became the favorite pupil and intimate friend of that eminent artist Leutze. Returning to his native State after perfecting himself in his profession he shared the fortunes of his people during the civil war, and has employed his pencil to illustrate their valor, and to portray their leaders, and history will associate him with Robert E. Lee as David with Napoleon,and Stewart with Washington. His identification with his people’s cause, his participation in all their hopes and disappointment, suggested the picture, ‘ Appomattox,” which adorns the library of our State capitol. It represents in one typical figure the South in its overthrow — not in the persons of its leaders, but in one of that ‘honored fire” who in thousands returned to their ruined homes to face the future with no ray from the past to inspire or guide them. The imposing figure stands alone on a desolate field — cast down, but not destroyed. In the resolute face, in the firm pose of the foot, the tense grasp of the hand, which closes on no weapon save his own right arm, there is vigor yet. And in this image of defeat there is all the life and purpose which have restored the overturned civilization of our country, and from the ruins of war have raised a structure of which we are justly proud. This is the idea which Elder has embodied in this picture, and by a happy accident he was in the act of modelling this subject in the clay, when the scheme was inaugurated of erecting a memorial to the Confederate dead of Alexandria. He submitted his design to your committee who adopted it without hesitation, and ordered its reproduction in bronze and of heroic size. Being less of a sculptor than a painter he called to his aid his friend, Casper Buberl.

Buberl, a Bohemian by birth, came to our shores a poor and unknown youth, not even understanding the language of the country, but conscious of the power within him, and imbued with that indomitable spirit, which commands recognition and reward. Modest and retiring, but patient and diligent, he has at length forged ahead to the front rank of his profession. Apart from the pecuniary gain, it has been his earnest desire for many years to have an cxample of his work within the limits of the Old Dominion, and he seized this opportunity with avidity. With the adaptibility of genius, he caught the motive of Elder’s conception and made it his own.

The result of this collaboration is a masterpiece of the plastic art, original in design, perfect in execution, which will be an enduring object of pride aud admiration, not only to the City of Alexandria, but to the entire Commonwealth. As the youth of the present and future generations shall gaze upon this noble effigy, their bosoms will swell with emotion to reflect that it stands here to commemorate the heroic deeds of their own people, who, though they sleep in nameless graves, live still in our grateful memories.

Go, strew his ashes to the wind
Whose heart and voice have served mankind,
And is he dead, whose glorious mind
Lifts thine on high?
To live in hearts we leave behind
Is not to die!

And when such battle-scarred veterans as Corse and Marye and Herbert and Hooe and McKnight and Bryant and Sergeant Murray and Zimmerman repair to this sacred spot, I see their faces kindle with the gaudium certaminis of old, their eyes flash, then soften, and then glisten with the tears of affection as they read the names inscribed upon this pedestal. The Sangster brothers, boys in years, but men in character and courage. One was the first of his command to yield up his young life at Bull Run a willing sacrifice for his native State.The other fell at Second Manassas in sight of the spot where his brother had fallen.

Wm. T. Morrill, gentle, modest and brave, color sergeant of the old Seventeenth Virginia, riddled with bullets at Seven Pines, while bearing the Southern standard far to the front of his line of battle.

A. J. Humphreys, a model citizen and soldier, Captain of the Alexandria Riflemen, who fell at Williamsburg while cheering his comrades on to victory with conspicuous gallantry, where all were brave.

I would like to call this roll of honor through, W. E Gray, John F. Addison, and Samuel B.Paul, all killed in the momentous battle of Seven Pines and buried by their comrades in a captured redoubt while the bursting shells and rattling musketry made appropriate requiem for the gallant dead, and their mortal remains still repose in that soil, hallowed by the blood of patriot heroes:

How sleep the the brave who sink to rest
By all their country’s wishes bless!
When spring with dewy fingers cold
Returns to deck their hallowed mold
She there shall dress a sweeter sod
Than Fancy’s feet hath ever trod.

By fairy bands their knell is rung,
By forms unseen their dirge is sung.
There Honor comes, a pilgrim gray
To bless the turf that wraps their clay,
Ami Freedom shall awhile repair
To dwell a weeping hermit there.

And now Mr. Chairman and gentlemen of the Committee, in the name and on behalf of John A. Elder and Casper Buberl I formally tender, and consign to your charge and keeping this work, feeling confident that these artists have fulfilled their promise in its execution to your entire satisfaction.