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Almost one hundred Harvard Civil War Veterans attended the Annual Memorial Day Exercises in Sanders Theatre yesterday. Veterans from the Charles Beck Post joined the Harvard graduates in the Yard and escorted them to the auditorium.
After a prayer had been offered by Rev. Prof. E. C. Moore, the audience joined in singing "Fair Harvard' and then the chairman, Mr. W. C. Lane '81 introduced General Hazard Stevens '64.
The first part of General Stevens' address was a tribute to "the patriot dead who in the Great Rebellion so freely gave their lives to their country and to liberty, in a war that meant a great union saved from disruption, free popular government preserved, and a race set free.
"The Civil War was anything but an unmixed evil. Patriotism prompted both sides and so with the bravery of northern soldiers "all the brave deeds of southern men are part of the common heritage of American glory. Moreover, we all know that the young men and youths who took part in that war were made better men, morally, mentally, and physically. Such service ever has been the great counteracting influence against the selfish aims and cares of everyday life. A man who engages in trade or toil, buys and sells by the yard and pound, and as the years roll on becomes as narrow and mean as his smallest measure. But war breaks out, his country calls, he throws aside all personal interests, takes up arms in her defence and becomes a patriot and a hero.
"But patriotism does not consist only in innovating the flag and extolling brave deeds of war. Its call, especially in a free country, should be as insistent in peace as in war. The fundamental duties of citizenship are fourfold; in war to fight for our country; in peace to work and vote for the best measures and the best public servants; to sit as jurors dealing out justice between man and man; and to bear, each according to his means, the cost of institutions and government.
"In preparation for the first duty every youth in the land should serve a year in the regular army under strict discipline which would make a man of him as well as a soldier. The right to vote should be deemed a duty and enforced by law. Those unfitted should be excluded from the suffrage. The jury is our most abused institution. It is a duty shirked by the most intelligent citizens and left to men unfitted to perform the office. Lastly, taxation needs reform.
"As men come to perform these duties of citizenship they will realize more and more the necessity of them and their benefits, and will take more pride and pleasure in doing them, until, let us hope, the man who honorably and zealously does his duties will be deemed and applauded just as worthy of praise as a soldier who has gallantly gone through battle."
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