196 HISTORY OF THE SEVENTY-EIGHTH REGIMENT O.V.V.I.
enemy's destructive fire, and shared with your comrades of the Army of the Cumberland, the glories of a victory, than which no soldiery can boast a prouder.
In that unexampled campaign of vigilant and vigorous warfare from Chattanooga to Atlanta, you freshened your laurels at Resaca, grappling with the enemy behind his works, hurling him back dismayed and broken. Pursuing him from thence, marking your path by graves of fallen comrades, you again triumphed over superior numbers at Dallas, fighting your way from there to Kenesaw Mountain, and under the murderous artillery that frowned from its rugged hights, with a tenacity and constancy that finds few parallels, you labored, fought and suffered through the broiling rays of a Southern midsummer sun, until at last you planted your colors upon its topmost hights. Again on the 22d of July, 1864, rendered memorable through all time for the terrible struggle you so heroically maintained under discouraging disasters, and that saddest of all reflections, the loss of that exemplary soldier and popular leader, the lamented McPherson, your matchless courage turned defeat into a glorious victory. Ezra Chapel and Jonesboro added new luster to a radiant record, the latter unbarring to you the proud Gate City of the South. The daring of a desperate foe, in thrusting his legions northward, exposed the country in your front, and though rivers, swamps and enemies opposed, you boldly surmounted every obstacle, beat down all opposition, and marched onward to the sea. Without any act to dim the brightness of your historic page, the world rang plaudits when your labors and struggles culminated at Savannah, and the old "Starry Banner" waved once more over the walls of one of the proudest cities of the seabord. Scarce a breathing spell had passed when your colors faded from the coast, and your columns plunged into the swamps of the Carolinas. The sufferings you endured, the labors you performed, and the successes you achieved in those morasses, deemed impassable, for a creditable episode in the history of the war. Pocotaligo, Salkahatchie, Edisto, Branchville, Orangeburg, Columbia, Bentonville, Charleston and Raleigh are names that will ever be suggestive of the resistless sweep of your column through the territory that cradled and nurtured, and from whence was sent forth on its mission of crime, misery and blood, the disturbing and disorganizing spirit of secession and rebellion. The work for which you pledged your brave hearts and brawny arms to the Government of your fathers, you have nobly performed. You are seen in the past gathering through the gloom that enveloped the land, rallying as the guardian of man's proudest heritage, forgetting the thread unwoven in the loom, quitting the anvil and abandoning the workshops, to vindicate the supremacy of the laws and the authority of the Constitution. Four years have you struggled in the bloodiest and most destructive war that ever drenched the earth with human gore; step by step you have borne our standard, until to day, over every fortress and arsenal that rebellion wrenched from us, and over city, town and hamlet, from the lakes to the Gulf, and from ocean to ocean, proudly floats the "starry emblem" of our national unity and strength.
Your rewards, my comrades, are the welcoming plaudits of a grateful people, the consciousness that in saving the republic, you have won for your country renewed
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