First Inhaled the Sacred Air of Liberty

I am currently reading a book with quotes and writings from people who lived during the Civil War in St. Louis Missouri.  The book is called, "A Most Unsettled State: First Person Accounts of St. Louis During the Civil War" by NiNi Harris.

The reason I wanted to read this book is because I discovered my Michel ancestors who lived on Market Street in downtown St. Louis during the Civil War.  I want glimpses of their life from real happenings and am so much enjoying this book.

I wanted to share a quote I have stumbled upon that sticks out to me. Captain James Eads gave a speech at the Citizen's Union Meeting in the upper room at Soulard Market to mostly Germans supporting the Union cause.  My Michel ancestors came from Germany in 1850 and settled in St. Louis.  Their church was a block from Soulard Market.  I can imagine them possibly being at this meeting.

Quoting Eads, "I thank God that our adopted citizens have, by an unanimous sentiment of devotion to the Union, been enabled to administer, by their example, a rebuke at once so severe and so well merited to those ungrateful men who are laboring to defile that banner under whose protecting shade they first inhaled the sacred air of liberty."

I love the use of the words adopted, example, ungrateful, banner, protecting shade, first inhaled, and sacred air of liberty.  These words and others keep standing out to me and I find myself rereading and rereading this quote and pondering.


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