Homage to Gen'l Woodhull
Dear General Woodhull;
On this, the 236th anniversary of your passing as a result of the then recent Battle of Long Island, with the history of the actions of that event and the exploits of its heroes, including yourself, upon my mind, I am moved to express my gratitude here. In a nation with so short a memory, often seemingly undeserving of such dedication as yours, know, if only by this, that there are still those who appreciate and remember your position, representation, services, capture, ignoble brutalization, distressful imprisonment, impoverishment, and final sacrifice on all our behalves.
Oh, that circumstance had been different! That your loyal Long Island militia had been returned to you by the Generals in command at Brooklyn, scene of our Army’s first true and largest-ever battle against the suppressing host of a tyrannical government. ‘tis likely that defeat and providential retreat, as well as ultimate victory, would have been no different. But we, you and all the citizen-soldiers of the 1st Suffolk County Reg’t (represented in our own shadow overcast times but whose original losses have gone greatly uncounted), would have given even more in the future and suffered less at the hands of a dastardly enemy.
Know ye also that in death you continued to serve the cause of liberty, and inspire still today. We commend you to heaven, Sir. I remain, in life…
Your most humble and obedient servant.
This above all: to thine own self be true, And it must follow, as the night the day, Thou canst not then be false to any man.