MOBILE REGISTER AND ADVERTISER, March 22, 1864, p. 1, c. 6
Flag Presentation to the 2nd Missouri Cavalry.
Columbus, (Miss.) March 5, 1864.
Editors of News: Gentlemen—At the request of our citizens, and the ladies in particular, I enclose you for publication the correspondence concerning the presentation of a new flag to the time-worn veterans of the 2nd Missouri Regiment of Cavalry, now with Gen. Forrest, who took a conspicuous part in the last battle from Okalona to near Pontotoc.
Such heroes deserve, and will have a full niche in the temple of Fame when the war is over, and their commander's eloquent response deserves a place in the public journals, that this, our only record, may be properly appreciated. J.B.
Columbus, Miss., Feb. 29.
Capt. Thompson: Accept, as a feeble testimonial of our high appreciation of the patriotism and heroism of the 2d Missouri regiment, this simple flag. It is, we know, unworthy the gallant command to which we offer it, but the brief notice upon which it has been prepared is our apology for its simplicity.
Accept it as a substitute for the blood-stained banner under which your gallant comrades have so gloriously defended our liberties and our homes. Like the white plume of Henry of Navarre, we know it will be seen ever waving in the thickest of the fight, and be followed on to "victory or death."
Will you not return to us the old flag, that we may preserve it in remembrance of our brave Missouri troops?
Columbus, Miss., Feb. 29th.
Ladies: Accept, through me, the thanks of the Missouri regiment for the beautiful flag presented this morning, and rest assured we will treasure it, and be as ready to follow it as we have ever been to sustain the old one.
If left to my option, I would readily comply with your request, and leave the old flag in your possession, feeling that it would, perhaps, in your hands, be safer than in ours; but as it is a regimental flag, I shall be compelled to take it back with me. I will, however, send your letter to the regiment, and should they decide to return it to you, I feel that it will be in the hands of friends.
John S. Thompson,
Captain, Co. B, 2d Missouri Vols.
Headquarters 2d Missouri Cavalry
Starksville, Miss., March 2, 1864.
Miss Annie Fort and Pattie Askew:
Ladies: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of a beautiful flag from your hands, and to thank you for myself and the gallant 2d Missouri, for the complimentary terms by which it is accompanied.
We are soldiers of too much experience to value it less because of any deficiency of gold lace or embroidery. Its simplicity is to us symbolical of our country's sorrows; and believe me, under it, as the emblem of our cause, and the token of the high esteem which you hold us, every soldier of the 2d Missouri will do his duty.
Accept, Ladies, with our thanks, the old flag of the Regiment, under which many of our truest patriots have fallen. We know we couldn't make a more appropriate disposition of that sacred relic than by committing it into the hands of the noble ladies of our land, who in a great degree inspired the valor which enabled us to preserve its honor. Time was, ladies, when such a tribute would have called forth a more eloquent acknowledgment; but the rust with which three long years of soldier life has encrusted our literature, must plead for the deficiencies of this. We will write it in a more pleasing manner to you with the points of our swords on the breasts (or backs) of our foes, whenever an opportunity presents, and with this promise, and thanking you again and again for your noble present, myself and regiment have the honor to remain your obedient servants.
R. A. McCulloch,
Lieut.-Colonel Comnd'g 2d Mo. Cavalry.