Garfield Calms the Crowd
On the morning of Lincoln’s death, a crowd of fifty thousand people gathered before the Exchange Building in New York. Feelings ran high, natural enough in the circumstances, and there was danger of its finding expression in violence. Then a well-built man in officer’s uniform stepped to the front of the balcony, and in a voice that rang like a trumpet call, cried:
“Fellow citizens! Clouds and darkness are round about Him. His pavilion is dark waters, and thick clouds of the skies. Justice and judgment are the establishment of His throne. Mercy and truth go before His face. Fellow citizens! God reigns! And the Government at Washington still lives!”
Instantly the tumult was stilled, as the people grasped the import of those sublime words. The speaker was General James A. Garfield, himself to become a martyr-president sixteen years later.
~ Moody Monthly