From the 25 September 1883 issue of The New York Times.


From the Chicago Tribune.

The old white-whiskered white-haired man, dressed in black broadcloth, with a boutonniere in his lapel—the man for whom Robert E. Lee always asked when the rebel lines were wavering—stood up. Turning his back on the great gathering across the course, he faced the select and distinguished coterie in the judges’ stand, and said in a low tone:

“MR. PRESIDENT, LADIES, AND GENTLEMEN: I am indebted to the officers of this agricultural society for this honor to-day, and I thank you for it.” Then, turning to his audience, he said in a voice which failed to reach very far: “Far away from my Southern home I ahve come to enjoy this occasion. We are here to prepare a way whereby we may become a more homogeneous people. The soldiers of the North and of the South were the first to bring about this blessing of good-will. After the war was over I went to Washington, where I visited my old friend and school-mate, Gen. Grant. He asked me if I was ready to be amnestied, and when I told him yes he gave me a strong letter to President Johnson, and I called on him the next day. After a long talk he put me off until the next day. Then there was another long talk, and finally President Johnson said to me: ‘There are three men in this country who can never enjoy the benefits of amnesty—Jeff Davis, R. E. Lee, and yourself.’ I said to him, after thanking him for placing me in the distinguished company he did: ‘Mr. President, those who are forgiven most love the most.’ With that I went back to my home in Georgia. A year after a petition for me went up, and Gen. Grant and Gen. Pope went in my behalf in person to see it through, and they did. I felt that I ahd not loved the Union before as I did then, and gains I said, ‘Those who are forgiven most lvoe the most.’ [Cheers.] I felt the influences of that tender cord which had been touched—by the people of the North—by its women.” Here Gen. Longstreet hesitated and faltered. Turning his back on the audience again he faced the ladies in the judges’ stand, and, looking at them a few seconds, began in a very low tone: ‘How can I, a poor soldier, reared in and accustomed to the rough life of camp, express myself while looking into the bright eyes I see. I fail to express—I do not know how to speak—I— [The hesitancy was becoming painful, and the audience back of him could not divine what he was doing or saying, while those in the stand looked at him steadfastly.] I—I can only say—in the language of my old commander, ‘I must surrender.’ ” He sat down at once, a few cheers went up, and as the sun was beating on his white hairs a lady offered him her sunshade, which he held above him the remainder of the sitting.