With Memorial Day approaching, a quick “memorial day” search of the online catalog turned up quite a few interesting results. The Filson Historical Society Library has an extensive collection of pamphlets in which various Civil War related speeches and addresses are printed. One in particular is a Rare Pamphlet of a transcription of a Memorial Day address delivered at the Decoration of Union Soldiers’ Graves in Frankfort, Kentucky on May 30, 1891 by Samuel McKee.
Hon. Samuel McKee served as a Union soldier during the Civil War, and was subsequently elected as an Unconditional Unionist to the Thirty-ninth Congress from 1865-1867 as well as a Republican to the Fortieth Congress from 1868-1869. Born near Mount Sterling, Kentucky in 1833, McKee studied law at the Cincinnati Law School and practiced both before and after his political career. He died in Louisville, Kentucky in 1898, and is buried at Cave Hill Cemetery.
McKee’s Memorial address outlines United States military history highlighting and praising the Union soldiers of the Civil War. A particularly poignant statement which further reveals his patriotic sentiment is as follows: “We are intensely loyal to the Union, to the Star - Spangled Banner, and we recognize but one flag. We do not honor “the lost cause.” This eight page address was printed by John P. Morton & Company out of Louisville, Kentucky and can be viewed in full in the Special Collections Department at the Filson.
Information on Samuel McKee was obtained from the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress which can be searched at the following link: http://bioguide.congress.gov/biosearch/biosearch.asp.