The invitation to the annual Banquet of your Society, affords me a double enjoyment, first of meeting gentlemen from my own, I may say here, from our own State; and next, to me novel experience of replying to a toast in the great City of New York. It is true that while, thanks to the partiality of my fellow citizens of Baltimore, occupying an official executive position at home for a number of years, I was occasionally called upon to assist in post prandial oratory, but it was only as one of the Home Guard. If therefore, I should not meet your expectation, you must "pass my imperfections by," or attribute it to that modesty which is characteristic of a Democrat, a Marylander and a Baltimorean.
The toast to which I have been asked to respond is,however, [sic] one that any citizen of our State should at all times be able to reply -- "Our Native State," my native State, your native State, Maryland, my Maryland, or as an Englishman referred to it after traveling over the country, "The gentleman's State." Her daughters are fair, her sons are brave, and on her escutcheon there is no blot or blemish to tarnish its lustre, [sic] or contradict its motto, "Fatti Maschi [sic], parole femine". Maryland alone of the forty-six has a true heraldic coat of arms; the crest, the shield, the motto of that Lord Baltimore, who founded the colony, of which Leonard Calvert planted the cross at St. Mary's and proclaimed the doctrine of Religious freedom, that is religious freedom or toleration as it was known at that day.
We of the present time would scarcely regard this proclamation always referred to in after dinner speeches, as much more than a slight modification of the biggoted [sic] intolerance of those early days. It was, however, a considerable stride in advance, at a time when even a slight dif-
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