“Don’t you worry and don’t you hurry,” was what they said. How I wish I could have creditors of that kind always! [Laughter.] Really, I recognize it as a personal loan to myself to be out of debt. I wasn’t personally acquainted with ten of them, you know. ‘Don’t you worry and don’t you hurry’; that phrase is written on my heart. You are always very kind in saying things about me, but you have forgotten those creditors. They were the handsomest people I ever knew. They were handsomer than I was—handsomer than Tom Reed. [Cheers and laughter.]
“How many things have happened in the seven years I have been away from home! We have fought a righteous war, and a righteous war is a rare thing in history. We have turned aside from our own comfort and seen to it that freedom should exist not only within our own gates, but in our own neighborhood. We have set Cuba free and placed her among the galaxy of free nations of the world. We started out to set those poor Filipinos free, but why that righteous plan miscarried perhaps I shall never know. we have also been making a creditable showing in China, and that is more than all of the powers can say. The ‘Yellow Terror’ is threatening the world, but no matter what happens the United States says that it has had no part in it. [Applause.]
“Since I have been away we have been nursing free silver. [Laughter.] We have watched by its cradle, we have done our best to raise that child; but every time it seemed to be getting along nicely along came some pestiferous Republican and gave it the measles or something. [Laughter and applause.] I fear we will never raise that child. [Applause.]
“We’ve done more than that. We elected a President four years ago. We’ve found fault with him and criticized him, and here a day or two ago we go and elect him for another four years with votes enough to spare to do it over again. [Laughter.] We have tried a Governor for two years and we liked him so well that we decided to put him in the great office of Vice President, not that the office may confer distinction upon him, but that he may confer distinction upon the office. For a while we will not stammer and be embarrassed when somebody asks us the name of the Vice President. [Laughter.] He is widely known, and in some places favorably. [Laughter.] I am a little afraid that these fulsome compliments may be misunderstood; I have been away for a long time and I am not used to this complimentary business; I merely want to testify to my old admiration for my friend the Governor. If you give him rope enough—[Prolonged laughter] I meant to say— well, it is not necessary for me to say any more; you know him. [Renewed laughter.]
“Then take Odell; you’ve made him Governor. He’s another Rough Rider, I suppose; all the fat things seem to go to that profession. I would have been a Rough Rider myself had I known this political Klondike was going to open up. I would have gone to war if I could have gone in an automobile, but never on a horse. I know the horse too well; I know the horse in peace and in war. A horse thinks of too many things to do which you do not expect. He is apt to bit you in the leg when you think he is half asleep. A horse is too capricious for me. [Laughter.]
“We have taken Chauncey Depew out of an active an useful life and made him a Senator; embalmed him, corked him up; look at that gilded mummy. That man has said many a true thing about me in his time, and I always said something would happen to him. That man has made my life miserable at many a banquet on both sides of the ocean, and palsied be the hand that draws that cork. [Laughter.]
“All these things and many more have happened since I have been away. It only goes to show how little a Mugwump, perhaps the last of his race, is missed in this unfeeling world. I come back and find myself a party by myself. Seven years ago when I was old and worn and down, you have me the grip and the word which lifts a man up and makes him glad to be alive. I come back from my exile fresh and young and alive, ready to begin anew. [Applause.] Your welcome warms me, it makes me feel that it is a reality and not a glorious dream to vanish with the morning.”
November 11 Sunday – At 1410 W. 10th in N.Y.C., Sam wrote a postcard to Robert Underwood Johnson of Century Magazine.
“You’d much better come here—to-morrow before 12 noon—my den is sacred from interruption from 10.30 till 12 daily. But if you can’t, I’ll look in at the Century during the week” [MTP].
SLC used mourning border for most letters from Susy’s death on, then from Livy’s death on.