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THE EXERCISES AT THE CHURCH.
The venerable building of the First Congregational Society was filled to its utmost capacity. His Excellency Hon. Alexander H. Rice, Governor of Massachusetts; the members of his staff; Hon. William Gaston, ex-Governor of the State; His Honor Samuel C. Cobb, Mayor of Boston ; Hon. John T. Clark, Chairman of the Board of Aldermen; Hon. John Q. A. Brackett, President of the Common Council; Alderman Francis Thomas; Hon. William A. Simmons, Collector of the Port of Boston, occupied the seats immediately in front of the pulpit, on the left of the centre aisle. The Chief Marshal and staff were seated in chairs in the aisle, in front of the pulpit. The Roxbury Artillery Association occupied the front part of the middle tier, and behind them were the members of the Grand Army. In the next tier, on the right, were the veterans of the Norfolk Guards. The left middle tier was allotted to the Roxbury City Guard, and the next tier on the left to the Knights of Pythias, in front, and the Roxbury Horse Guards. The band and the choir were in the front gallery, and the side galleries and seats beneath were filled with citizens and their ladies. The following-named gentlemen acted as ushers : George 0. Fillebrowne, George E. Hall, S. Walter Wales, Henry Bliss, William H. Tredick. In front of the pulpit was a choice collection of exotics, furnished by Messrs. Calder & Wiswall.
The Hon. John J. Clarke, the first Mayor of the City of Roxbury, presided, and with him in the pulpit were General Horace Binney Sargent, the orator of the day, and the Revs. Henry M. King and John O. Means, D. D.
The exercises began with the singing of the "Ode on Science,” by the Old Folks Choir of the Winthrop-street Methodist Church, led by Mr. H. W. Bowen, and supported by Carter's Instrumental Band, T. M. Carter, leader :
“ The morning sun shines from the east,
And spreads its glories to the west ;
“So Science spreads her lucid ray
O’er lands that long in darkness lay ;
“Fair Freedom, her attendant, waits
To bless the portals of her gates,
“ The British yoke, the Gallic chain,
Was urged upon her sons in vain;
PRAYER BY REV. HENRY M. KING.
O Thou, who art our God, as Thou wast our fathers' God, we, neighbors and fellow-citizens, are assembled on this solemn festival, in this venerable house of prayer, to acknowledge Thy goodness to ús in days gone by, and humbly to implore Thy blessing for days to come. From everlasting to everlasting Thou art God, and with Thee a thousand years are but as a single day ; Thou knowest neither beginning.nor end of days. As we turn our thoughts backward through the period of a hundred years, they rest not upon the living, but upon the dead, upon those who did well the work of life, and were laid away in honored graves ; and we, their children and their children's children, render Thee our hearty thanks to-day, O God, for the intelligent patriotism of our fathers, for their patience, their wise building, and their self-denials, the fruits of which have been preserved to us through the fidelity and sacrifices of their successors; and as the persons, and the events, and the scenes of a hundred years shall be made to pass before our view to-day in vivid and rapid succession, we pray Thee that Thou wilt help us to gather lessons of wisdom from the teachings of the past; and may we be made to have a truer and humbler faith in God as we trace Thy hand so distinctly in our local and national history ; may we be led to a higher appreciation of the great blessings which have been conferred upon us; and may we gather inspiration from these memories, that we may be the more patient in the performance of duty, and the more sensitive to all personal obligations, that we may be true to our convictions of right, and truly loyal to our country and to Thee. And we beseech Thee that Thou wilt help us to be more enlarged in our hearts, in the love of God, in the love of country, in the love of purity, and the love of home. And now we thank Thee that the lines have fallen to us in pleasant places, and that we have a goodly heritage. We thank Thee that Thou hast made beautiful the place of our dwelling; that Thou hast covered the rocky pasture lands of other days with many flowers ; that Thou hast filled these valleys and these hills with homes which are the abodes of peace, of virtue, and of comfort. We thank Thee that Thou hast made
graves of our loved ones, and sustained our mourning hearts with the hope of the resurrection. We thank Thee that Thou hast multiplied our schools and our churches, and that we and our children have the inestimable blessings of the Christian religion and the advantages of a good education. We thank Thee that Thou hast made piety, and integrity, and intelligence honorable in this community. We thank Thee that here Thou hast rewarded industry and enterprise, and that the labor of our hands has been blessed by Thee. Surely Thou hast not dealt with us according to our sins, nor rewarded us according to our iniquities; for Thou hast not only given to us Jesus Christ to be our Saviour, but Thou hast also, with Him, freely given us all things. Now we pray Thy blessing to rese upon this day and its services; upon these citizens who are gathered together ; to rest upon our homes, our schools, and our churches; to rest upon the fair city of which we have become a part, and
upon the honored Commonwealth under whose protection we live. And forget not, we beseech Thee, to grant peculiar grace and wisdom to those persons whom we have elected to positions of high responsibility and trust in city and state and nation. Extend Thy blessing to our whole country, we pray Thee, which Thou hast made great among the nations of the earth.
We entreat Thee to deliver us from all our present agitations, and let wise and just, peaceful and righteous, counsels prevail ; and God grant that everywhere the principles of righteousness and of truth may be accepted, and that the voice of the people may be heard, and recognized, and may prove to be the voice of God. Be pleased, O God, to forgive us all our sins, and to accept the service which we bring, enabling us to dedicate ourselves anew to-day to the high interests of religion and freedom. And to Thy name, Father, Son and Spirit, shall be all the praise, forever. Amen.
The choir sang " The Star-Spangled Banner,” and the oration was delivered.