Slike strani

SOON after this magazine comes out, flowers will be laid
on countless graves of soldiers in the Civil War, North
and South. Many of them were young as young and
as brave as those now daily going to death for a great
cause. There will be flowers for the newly fallen, too, and
there will be tears, and a thousand speakers on Decora-
tion Day will refer to the soldier grandsons of those whose
sacrifices that day commemorates.

The khaki they wear is the final emblem of the united country; and the title of this vivid sketch is a happy expression of the idea.

Blue + Gray

By Sophie


Author of "The Blue Envelope," "The Golden Block," etc.
Illustrations by C. F. PETERS

"Could you please tell me where to get off to be near the Hippodrome, ma'am?"

I reply and he says shyly, in his inimitable soft drawl,


EFORE me lies a letter from a New England boy now training for aviation service in Texas, a boy who had never been farther south,than.Boston until he entered the Army. He says: "The people here are kinder and more open-hearted and hospitable than I could ever have dreamed. I never thought the South was like this."

A Georgia lad in khaki turns to me anxiously The survivors of these great armies will march
in the Subway:

under the old torn battle flags in honor of their
dead comrades, and with them will march
sons and grandsons under new, bright flags
-one flag. The old hates are gone-the old
grudges, even the old festering sore of recon-
struction days is well nigh healed.

"I sure am obliged. I was right scared at first to ask a stranger anything here in New York, but everybody's just so nice! I don't know why people down home say the Nawth's so cold and hard."

"You like it up here, then?" I ask. "Yes, ma'am," he says. "When I get back from France I'm going to settle up Nawth somewhere. I like it fine."


In the list of those rescued from the Tuscania were names from the North, names from the East, names from the South, names from the West, and I know, from every camp I hear of, from little items here and there in each paper and magazine that I pick up, that every State in the Union has given its


quota of sons. And so, as one artist friend
of mine quaintly puts it: "Blue plus gray
equals khaki."

And that brings me to remembering other
things. On Decoration Day garlands and flags
innumerable will deck the graves of the men
who fought for the Union, and the no less
brave and devoted soldiers of the Confederacy.

Let no one think these old hates, these old grudges were not once real and terrible. A charming old lady, who was just a girl when the guns of 1861 first sounded, told me that an acquaintance, a Northern girl, said to her, in a passionate rage against the enemy, that she "hoped to wade knee deep in Southern blood.” Of course, she hoped nothing of the sort, but at the moment she undoubtedly thought she meant it. It is a sample of the talk of the time among the women.

Another and more amusing episode occurred when a young Southern miss was sent to stay with relatives in the North. Burning with indignation over the wrongs to her native

[ocr errors]

I never

"The people here are kinder and more open-hearted and
hospitable than I could ever have dreamed.
thought the South was like this"

heath, she was in no mood to enter into such social gaieties as were offered her, but was not permitted to withdraw from them entirely. At an evening party she was asked to sing. She refused. She was again asked-then urged. With a scornful toss of her curls and a flirt of her crinoline ruffles, she sat down at the piano and sang-of course "The Bonnie Blue Flag!" Having reached the lines

"I envy not the Northern girl

With robes and jewels rare,

Though diamonds deck her snowy neck,
And stolen pearls her hair,"

ing, many of them. In Maryland, where sympathy was mostly for the South, yet secession was not effected, elections were held under the auspices of the bayonet. Men walked to the polls between files of soldiers, and each would-be voter was sternly questioned. One austere old Methodist was not permitted to vote because, under this examination, he had said that he believed all war to be wrong and that he would side neither with North nor South.

"That is neutrality, and neutrality is disloyalty. You cannot vote," said the Federal authority in charge.

But who remembers or cares for these things to-day, save as a background of courage for the army of democracy en route to Berlin?


"My father was killed in the first battle of Manassas," said a Southern woman to me, not long ago and I knew

that her childhood and girlhood had been lived under the heavy shadow of privation and care that her father's death had brought.

"But I have no feeling against the North," she assured me a moment later. "And my two nephews are volunteers-the first in our town to go," she concluded proudly. "It seems queer they should fight for the flag their own blood fought against, but I tell you that they got their fighting spirit right from their grandfather-my father. So he gave something big to his country, even if he was called a traitor at the time."

she could not resist substituting with emphasis the words "crooked neck" for "snowy neck" and, I fear, banging the piano with a defiance that was as amusing as it was sincere.

And somehow I felt as though she had put her finger on the one great thing in all these memories of the blue and the gray. The color of the uniform the men wore is of little consequence to-day. Even the fact

But there were graver manifestations of feel- that brother fought against brother in that


memorable struggle, has no special significance now, save to the student of history. The point is that both armies of the Civil War were mostly made up of men who believed with all their hearts that they were fighting for a high and splendid cause, and were willing to give their lives for their belief. They did not fight for conquest, money, "a place in the sun," or any other materialistic rea


I remember asking my own father why he had volunteered - he was a Union man.

"Did you care so much about slavery?" I asked. "I didn't care a rap about slavery," he said, "but when the South fired on the old flag, I had to go.


I thought of that answer when I sat beside an elderly woman in the corridor of a great hotel not long ago.

"My son's crazy to go to the war," she confided, complacently. "But he can't, for I'm dependent on him. They won't take men with mothers who are dependent."

She rocked gently and folded her idle hands in a gesture of content. "My brother was drafted in the Civil War," she went on, "but he paid for a substitute-you know you could do that then. The business would have all gone to pieces if my brother'd had to go."

And with a feeling of gratitude and pride that I had never felt before I could answer "My father enlisted on the day he was twentyone. His brothers were all volunteers, and his parents refused their consent to him because he was their youngest. But on the day he was twenty-one he enlisted and fought through the last three years."

Never before had I realized what my father's volunteering had meant to me-never before

[ocr errors]

"Everybody's just so nice! I don't know why people down home say the Nawth's so cold and hard... I like it fine"

had I known what a great heritage he had left to me. If he were only alive so that I might have told him! Courage and honor and idealism-how suddenly glowing and real they became to me in that moment. And what a vision of the future it gives; of other daughters and sons in years to come who are going to be able to say with infinite pride and tenderness: "My father fought for a great ideal. He was willing to give his life that the world might be free from the curse of militarism."

Here is the priceless legacy that every man in khaki will leave to his descendants and it has come to him from those shadowy figures in blue and gray who also fought for an ideal, and whose high hearts of courage and devotion will beat on forever so long as men go gladly to fight and die for what they believe is right.

A new American army millions strong, and eighty-two of its weapons


LL the children and youth of the Allied nations have suddenly come into citizenship. Everywhere boys and girls, young men and young women are taking their places in the rank of those who do the needed work of the world. They are making bandages, knitting wristlets and socks, fetching and carrying; gathering old papers and old iron to be sold; preparing the soil for gardens, sewing, looking after furnaces and using their young hands in numberless tasks heretofore done by men and women.

They know the burdens that war has laid upon the world and they are more and more carrying their share of them. They are most eager to fulfil the spirit and the letter of the food regulations. They are putting aside their pennies for War Savings Stamps, probably sacrificing even more of their small personal desires than the grown-ups.

Children are a glowing example of ardent patriotism. Their sensitive imaginations, not yet hardened to life's needs, conceive the horrors and sufferings of war and their quick sympathies lead to unquestioning acts. Their natural chivalry is fired to deeds of self-sacrifice.

The Junior American Red Cross will no doubt have an enormous membership. A wonderful army of Little Citizens banded for service and for patriotism.

This is a new and great children's crusade. It would be impossible without our symbolthe Red Cross, the emblem of Mercy, the badge of self-sacrifice for others. It is an emblem of world-wide friendliness. Its significance is known to practically every child in every civilized nation.

The Junior Red Cross is a noble conception, made practical by the distinguished educators who have undertaken to bring into one organization the whole body of students in our schools-public, private, and parochial.

What this means for the future of the world it is difficult to imagine. It is surely laying the foundations of a new life. These little

[blocks in formation]
[blocks in formation]
« PrejšnjaNaprej »