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Opening of Address:
Hannibal Hamlin, An Apostle of Freedom,
Mr. Chairman and Friends:
The rugged, homespun State of Maine was never more aptly personified than in the one whose service we commemorate today. In the most tumultuous half-century in the history of America this man stood like a rock. Party, friends, traditions, all faded into insignificance before the principle for which he stood. In his early career when he was first a candidate for the Senate of the United States he failed of election by a single vote because he refused even to lift an eyebrow to indicate any weakening of his stand against the enslavement of his fellowmen.
At the pinnacle of his power, as second in command of the ship of state in the worst storm of its career, with utter selflessness, he used all his influence and powers of persuasion to emancipate the slave and was probably the first to hear the immortal document of Lincoln read to human ears.
Missing the Presidency of the United States by a scant six weeks, he could yet praise the man who had succeeded him and whose limitations he did not then understand. Here was a man who could quietly and calmly return to his Hampden home and accept a comparatively minor though lucrative position from the man who took his place.
Governor Ralph Owen Brewster, Bangor, Maine, Hannibal Hamlin
Brewster, Ralph Owen, "Dedicatory address of Hon. Ralph O. Brewster at the unveiling of the memorial to Hannibal Hamlin, Bangor, Maine" (1927). Books and Publications. 73.
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