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MICHIGAN, MY MICHIGAN

MAJ. W. C. RANSOM, 1871

Among the noblest attributes of our nature, my friends, is that principle which knits us as it were with hooks of steel to the land that gave us the peace and shelter of our early homes, and protected them with the broad aegis of her proud dominion. Not less warm in its impulses is the heart that clings to the snowy Alps than that which beats with enthusiastic measure at the shrine of sunny Italy. Nor does the peasant's home that nestles beneath the beetling rocks that overhang the banks of the romantic Rhine awaken less stirring emotions in the heart of the lonely wanderer in foreign lands than do the moss-covered turrets of the time-honored castle, whose history is written in the legends handed down from the distant past, in the sad memories of the former royal tenant, whom disaster and revolution may have driven a hopeless exile beyond the seas. But wherever fate or the fortunes of life may lead him, be he peasant or prince, lordly or lowly, in the moody moments of the twilight hour, and fast in the fetters of thought, instinctively he returns to the scenes of other days, around the home he loved so well. To perpetuate these kindly memories, it was the happy practice of our New England fathers to set apart one day of each returning year in honor of those brave old puritans who first planted the standard of civil and religious liberty on their rock-bound shores. On the recurrence of these time-honored festivals, which they denominated Forefathers' Day, it was their habit first to gather in their several places of worship, and return thanks to almighty God for that goodness which had continued them in the enjoyment of those blessed privileges secured them by the blood and sacrifices of their fathers.

MY MICHIGAN


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