A Thrilling Ceremony!

(from the Life of Billy Yank by Bell Irvin Wiley)

An account of a flag presentation ceremony by a Massachusetts lieutenant:

This eve we were presented with a flag by the ladies of this town. A very homely young lady (though she was the best looking one in town) made a speach which she learned (at least she thought so, but I did not for she went through [it] about as smooth as one might come down a rocky hill in the dark). Col. Gordon then answered it. Three cheers were then proposed for him which sounded a good deal as old bad Fali [the lieutenant's cat] did when her tail was stepped on. The officers of the regiment then gave the ladies three cheers which made them turn pale. The band play[ed], we took the [flag] ...and went home.