North Carolina Guns at Appomattox:
“The most pathetic, the most tragic, the most heroic, the grandest figure of all the ages is the Confederate soldier at Appomattox. Over his vision comes the scene of the smouldering ruins of his boyhood home. His land is drenched in blood. An old widowed mother weeps for his father who gave his life for a lost cause and prays for her son’s return.
A pallid and sickened wife, over-wrought and over-worked struggles in vain for bread, the hunger-cry of his starving children maddens his brain, the shot-torn, lifeless form of his brother lies piled unburied in the trenches behind him; half-starved, half-naked, foot-sore and emaciated he stands.
A far-away look is on his face, tears furrow his powder-stained, dusty cheeks, but there is the light of battle in his eye, the fire of a great unconquerable principle within his heart. Resolute and undaunted, he turns about and with bitter protests at being surrendered, begs his old commander to lead him back into battle, back to the field of blood and death: pleading he stands as the life-blood of the Confederacy ebbs away in the smoke of the North Carolina guns at Appomattox.
To the Confederate soldier North Carolina has erected a great monument in the Capitol Square at Raleigh. The State has also placed a monument at Appomattox which bears on the north side this inscription:
“Last at Appomattox.
At this place the North Carolina Brigade of Brigadier-General W.R. Cox of Grimes’ Division Fired the Last Volley, 9 April, 1865. Major-General Bryan Grimes of North Carolina Planned the Last Battle Fought by the Army of Northern Virginia and Commanded the Infantry Engaged Therein, the Greater Part of Whom Were North Carolinians.
This Stone is Erected by the Authority of the General Assembly of North Carolina, In Grateful and Perpetual Memory of the Valor, Endurance, and Patriotism of Her Sons Who Followed With Unshaken Fidelity the Fortunes of the Confederacy to This Closing Scene, Faithful to the End. Erected 9 April, 1905”
(Minutes of the Tenth Annual Meeting of the State Literary & Historical Association, Nov. 4, 1909, Compiled by Clarence H. Poe, Secretary-Treasurer, Mutual Publishing, 1909, page 61)
North Carolina War Between the States Sesquicentennial
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