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felt to reflect honor upon the whole and to have been participated in by every one. Dewey's captains could not have followed him with the precision they displayed, could not have shown the excellent gun practice they did show—in short, the victory would not have been possible had it not been for the unwearied training and practice given the navy during the dozen years previous by the admirals, the captains, and the crews who incessantly and in all weathers kept their vessels exercised, singly and in squadron, until the men on the bridge, the men in the gun-turrets, and the men in the engine-rooms knew how to do their work perfectly, alone or together. Every officer and man, from the highest to the lowest, who did his full duty in raising the navy to the standard of efficiency it had reached on May 1, 1898, is entitled to feel some personal share in the glory won by Dewey and Dewey's men. It would have been absolutely impossible not merely to improvise either the material or the personnel with which Dewey fought, but to have produced them in any limited number of years. A thoroughly good navy takes a long time to build up, and the best officer embodies always the traditions of a firstclass service. Ships take years to build, crews take years before they become thoroughly expert, while the officers not only have to pass their early youth in a course of special training, but can not possibly rise to supreme excellence in their profession unless they make it their life-work.
We should therefore keep in mind that the hero can not win save for the forethought, energy, courage, and capacity of countless other men. Yet we must keep in mind also that all this forethought, energy, courage, and capacity will be wasted unless at the supreme moment some man of the heroic type arises capable of using to the best advantage the powers lying ready to hand. Whether it is Nelson, the greatest of all admirals, at Aboukir, Copenhagen, or Trafalgar; or Farragut, second only to Nelson, at New Orleans or Mobile; or Dewey at Manila— the great occasion must meet with the great man, or the result will be at worst a failure, at best an indecisive success. The nation must make ready the tools and train the men to use them, but at the crisis a great triumph can be achieved only should some heroic man appear. Therefore it is right and seemly to pay homage of deep respect and admiration to the man when he does appear.
Admiral Dewey performed one of the great feats of all time. At the very outset of the Spanish War he struck one of the two decisive blows which brought the war to a conclusion, and as his was the first fight, his success exercised an incalculable effect upon the whole conflict. He set the note of the war. He had carefully prepared for action during the months he was on the Asiatic coast. He had his plans thoroughly matured, and he struck the instant that war was declared. There was no delay, no hesitation. As soon as news came that he was to move, his war-steamers turned their bows toward Manila Bay. There was nothing to show whether or not Spanish mines and forts would be efficient; but Dewey, cautious as he was at the right time, had not a particle of fear of taking risks when the need arose. In the tropic night he steamed past the forts, and then on over the mines to where the Spanish vessels lay. What material inferiority there was on the Spanish side was nearly made up by the forts and mines. The overwhelming difference was moral, not material. It was the difference in the two commanders, in the officers and crews of the two fleets, and in the naval service, afloat and ashore, of the two nations. On the one side there had been thorough preparation; on the other, none that was adequate. It would be idle to recapitulate the results. Steaming in with cool steadiness, Dewey's fleet cut the Spaniards to pieces, while the Americans were practically unhurt. Then Dewey drew off to breakfast, satisfied himself that he had enough ammunition, and returned to stamp out what embers of resistance were still feebly smouldering.
The victory ensured the fall of the Philippines, for Manila surrendered as soon as our land forces
arrived and were in position to press their attack home. The work, however, was by no means done, and Dewey's diplomacy and firmness were given full scope for the year he remained in Manila waters, not only in dealing with Spaniards and insurgents, but in making it evident that we would tolerate no interference from any hostile European power. It is not yet the time to show how much he did in this last respect. Suffice it to say that by his firmness he effectually frustrated any attempt to interfere with our rights, while by his tact he avoided giving needless offence, and he acted in hearty accord with our cordial well-wishers, the English naval and diplomatic representatives in the islands.
Admiral Dewey comes back to his native land having won the right to a greeting such as has been given to no other man since the Civil War.
SPEECH DELIVERED AT GALENA, ILLINOIS, APRIL 27, 1900
IN in the long run every great nation instinctively recognizes the men who peculiarly and pre-eminently represent its own type of greatness. Here in our country we have had many public men of high rank—soldiers, orators, constructive statesmen, and popular leaders. We have even had great philosophers who were also leaders of popular thought. Each one of these men has had his own group of devoted followers, and some of them have at times swayed the nation with a power such as the foremost of all hardly wielded. Yet as the generations slip away, as the dust of conflict settles, and as through the clearing air we look back with keener wisdom into the nation's past, mightiest among the mighty dead loom the three great figures of Washington, Lincoln, and Grant. There are great men also in the second rank; for in any gallery of merely national heroes Franklin and Hamilton, Jefferson and Jackson, would surely have their place. But these three greatest men have taken their place among the great men of all nations, the great men