Remarks on Being Presented with a Watch Charm by a Delegation of Confederate Veterans in New Orleans, Louisiana
Rather, if you will allow one who took part in a very small war to call you so—Comrades, I accept it with pleasure. Although some times we have difficulties in this country that we have to battle against, and sometimes things that we are not quite satisfied with, yet we are pretty good people.
I have felt this almost as never before during the past weeks. Now think what it means in a nation for the President of that nation, forty years after one of the greatest wars of all time, to be able to come and speak as I spoke in the capital of the Southern Confederacy, and to feel that I was addressing a people as loyal to the flag of our reunited country as can be found in this broad land of ours.
I passed in the shadow of the monument to Admiral Semmes in Mobile—under whom one of my uncles fired the last gun that was discharged from the Alabama, which another uncle built. The sister of that Admiral is now the wife of our Governor in the Philippines.
Gentlemen, this is an hour I appreciate. I thank you not only for the words which accompany it, but for the spirit which lies behind the words.
Theodore Roosevelt, Remarks on Being Presented with a Watch Charm by a Delegation of Confederate Veterans in New Orleans, Louisiana Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/343663