" On following his brilliant career as a commander one
realizes as never before, that "intellect and not numbers rule
the world; liberty-loving ideals and not force overmaster
bigness; and that truth and right, when supported by strong and
worthy purposes, always prevail in the end."
Among the many interesting relics to be seen at Mount Vernon are
the Sword of Washington and Franklin's staff. While gazing at
these mementoes of the past we recalled these significant words
of the poet:
"The sword of the Hero,
The staff of the Sage,
Whose valor and wisdom
Are stamped on the age.
Time hallowed mementoes
Of those who have riven
The sceptre from tyrants,
The lightning from heaven.
This weapon, O, Freedom;
Was drawn by thy son,
And it never was sheathed
Till the battle was won.
No stain of dishonor
Upon it we see.
'Twas never surrendered -
Except to the free.
While Fame claims the hero
And patriot sage
Their names to emblazon
On History's page,
No holier relics
Will Liberty hoard
Than Franklin's staff guarded
By Washington's sword."
Another relic is the key of that grim prison, the Bastile, sent
to Washington by Lafayette as a symbol of the overthrow of
despotism and triumph of free government in France. That symbol
is today one of America's most treasured mementos, carefully
guarded in the Nation's shrine at Mount Vernon.