Society of the Army of the Potomac Nineteenth Annual Reunion
Macgowan and Slipper, New York
Joshua Chamberlain, Lawrence Chamberlain, Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain,
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The Nineteenth reunion of the Society of the Army of the Potomac
Gettysburg July 3 - 4, 1888
This is a very short speech accepting the nomination as president of the Society of the Army of the Potomac.
It is interesting to see on page 9 and 57-58 that the First and Fifth Corps nominated Butterfield and the Sixth Corps nominated Chamberlain.
After being put to a vote Chamberlain won 78 to 66.
It is strange also that the Six Corps would nominate him when he was from the Fifth.
There was some talk in the Fifth Corps meeting notes of putting his name forward.
But Butterfield out ranked him, he had commanded not only Chamberlain's old Brigade, but also the whole 5th Corps.
Afterward Chamberlain wrote to his daughter, "It was a remarkable honor, on such a field & such an occasion, for one who was only a colonel on that field to be chosen President...
I shall have to do something to prove myself worthy of it. But a fellow couldn't get such a recognition unless there was something about him to draw men's minds,
or hearts. I was not a candidate, & it was a surprise to me, for there were candidates who 'ranked' me out of sight."1
The "field" and "occasion" was that this reunion was held at Gettysburg on the 25th anniversary of the battle.
After having such presidents as Sheridan, Meade, Burnside, Hancock, and Grant this was a great honor.