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MARCH I“ 1871 <> MARCH 1" I918-
l C O M I T E


The Protest
3 Al '
2 sace and Lorralne
. MARCH I“ 1871— MARCH I6' 1918
On Friday, February 17th 1871, before the National As—
sembly at Bordeaux, Emile Keller, Deputy of the Haut—Rhin,
I read out the protest drawn up by Gambelta with the approval
i of his colleagues representing Alsace and Lorraine :
f Alsace and Lorraine are unwilling to be made over to
l France cannot agree to Sign away Lorraine and Alsace...
. Europe cannot permit or ratify such a cession...
‘- Thc very newt day, through the medium of the representatives
-' belonging to the Left, the young Republic, in answer to this
declaration, made promise to support the claims of Alsacc‘
Lorraine for ever .
To the Representatives o,' the Bas-Rhin, Haut-Rhin
Moselle, Meurthe and Vosges departments.
Bordeaux, February 18th 187].
l Dear Colleagues and Fellow—countrymen,

By our applause yesterday, we endorsed unmistakably
the Declaration laid by one of you, before the Assembly in
respect of Alsace-Lorraine ; yet we would fain assure you
once more that the representatives of Republican France
share your sentiments and your opinion to the full. We
feel bound, on our part, to the heroic populations whose
representatives you are, just as they themselves feel bound
to our common mother—country. We hereby declare


moreover, that neither we, nor the National Assembly, nor

the French Nation as a whole, have any right to makes

single one of your constituents a subject of Prussia; and E
like you, we consider beforehand as null and void any act or .
ircaly, any vote or plebiscite, approving the cession of any

portion whatever 0f Alsace or Lorraine. (101110 what may, the

citiczns of those two countries will remain our I'ellowcoun~

lrymen and brothers, and the Republic promiscs them to

uphold that claim for ever.

Heartily clasping the hand you hold out to us, and with v
all brotherly greetings, we remain ever yours : 1
Victor HUGO, Louis BLANC, E. QUINET, V. SCHtELCHL‘ll, .



(Constantine), Jean BRUNET, Eugene FARCY, Ed. LOCK- 3

ROY, P. ’l‘IRARD, A. PEYRA’I‘, E. RAzous, Ch. LEPERE,


. B. MALON, P. JorcfiEAux, RATHIER (Yonne), Ed. ADAM,

P. COURNET, MOREAU ((ZOte—d’Or), Henri Bnrssos‘,


Ferd. CAMBON. 3

A few days after, hdarch Isl, thc ccssion of Alsace and Lor- l
mine was perforce agreed to, and in the name of his colleagues E
who were about to withdraw from the Assembly for ever, Jules .r
Grosjcan, Deputy of the Haul-Rhin department, craved leuvc I
[0 address the House, and voiced the most palhclic of protests. E

This supreme declaration it is that France has desired lo ‘
commemorate on March Isl 1918. I

The official tribute rendered to the faithful attachment of ‘
.llsacc and Lorraine in the grcul hall of the Sorbonne, has been
endorsed throughout France, by demonstrations of a ihoroughly

\ nalionul character and significance.

Al the sci/same time as in Paris, a like ceremony was held
at Bordeaux. In every town and village, the terms of the
prolesl were posted up for public perusal ; the document was
read out and commented upon both in the Slate and in the free
schools, bc/ore the soldiers and the sailors, in the churches, '

_lcmplcs and synagogues, wherever people think, or teach, or

The whole country was thrilled to its deplhs, united in u 1
common hope. Faithful to past memories and strong in its l
sense of right and justice, ii appealed together with Alsace and ‘,
Lorraine lo the conscience of all mankind. ‘


; Mr. Antonm Dubost
1 President of the Senate.

‘ I have not come here, Gentlemen, in the name
‘ of the Senate, as to one of those old and pathetic
l commemorations, at which Alsace-Lorraine received
1 anew the assurance of France’s grieving and faithful
; attachment. »- The time is no longer for sentimental
.1 regret and empty wishes, but for supreme decisions
1’ and dauntless energy. Alsace-Lorraine wishes to

be taken back, not to be mourned for.

Why were those fair lands wrested from us? As
mere Spoils, of course, for the sake of their rich plains
and forests, ~for-,mthe wealth‘of their mineral pro-
duction. 7' V ‘

, And Why do we claim to have them restored to

us? On account of that wealth? Perish the

I thought! Not for this have our sons laid down

their lives. Not for this are others yet prepared to

‘ die, but because they are part of our blood and heart
and soul, still a—quiver with their former life.

Because, moreover, they have become a world-
wide symbol, because for half a century they have
hung bleeding on the gallows of crucified nations, .

while mankind looked on, as, the case might be, in
sorrow, indifference, or actual complicity. 1'
So long as Alsace has not been taken down from =
that cross and restored to her previous existence, so
long will the world suffer the unspeakable horrors of
which this war will not be the last.
Above all, Gentlemen, let us beware of putting
our trust in the mystic virtue of suffering, of ideals,
and more particularly of phrases. Can we not see
for ourselves; at the present time, whither such mys-
ticism in politics. is bound to lead? T0 slavery,
if not to downright treason. Taken captive by might,
by might alone can Alsace be freed.
« Might is, stronger than right », says her captor.
« Might causes right to prevail », will be the answer
‘ of her deliverers, our heroic soldiers!

» Mr. Paul Deschanel
President of the Chamber of Deputies. \.
Adressing the Reichstag the other day, Count
Hertling, Chancellor of the German Empire de—
clared : ‘
<< Alsace and Lorraine are made up, for the greater

1 part, of purely German territories that had been

; wrested from the German Empire by brutal annexa-

f tions, by violations of international law carried on ‘

4 through the ages, until the Revolution of 1789 swall-

i owed up the last morsel. Thus did they become
French provinces. And in 1870, when we claimed

' back the territories taken from us in this criminal
way, the case was not due of conquest, but of « dis—

. annexation », accepted and endorsed by an over—

: whelming majority of the National Assembly, the

l lawful representation of the French people. »

i To such assertions, based solely upon reasons of
State, but assiduously taught throughout Germany,
from the primary schools to the Universities, it is
my purpose, as the confident mouthpiece of the
French Chamber, to oppose the actual facts, and

( dates, and documents.



First as regards the Metz district.

About the middle of the sixteenth century, Charles ‘
the Fifth, then at the height of his power, dreams ‘
of universal domination, not only in the political, ‘
but in the religious sphere. His aim is to enforce
Roman Catholicism upon the Protestants of Germany,
who at the time — according to Sybel fi— number some
seven—tenths of the population.

The Protestant leaders array themselves against
him. He overpowers them, occupies their lands,
deprives the free cities of the benefit of their charters,
disarms and plunders the inhabitants, and sets Up

‘ Italian and Spanish garrisons in their strongholds.
He forbids all Protestant forms of worship. He =
attempts to alter the Statute of the Empire, so that ,
his own son may be sure of succeeding to the throne.
The Electors, robbed of their rights, swear to defend ;
the << law of the Empire n, and « never again to make 7
. a Spaniard their Emperor. » 3

But Charles the Fifth is not satisfied With exer-
cising the power of an absolute sovereign, he speaks :
in the character of High Ponti‘t‘f. The Pope takes i
umbrage and the Roman Catholics, in their turn, 3 _
come to look upon the Emperor as an oppressor of 1
free conscience, usurping the powers of the Holy
See. A coalition is formed under the leadership 1’
of Maurice of Saxony and Margrave Albert of Bran— ‘

, denburg w an ancestor of William H. .
' Yet, what hope is there of breaking the circle of ‘
iron that grows narrower day by day? Assistance
is needed from without, and such assistance France ‘
alone can tender.

Ambassadors are sent to Henry II with a request ‘
for his intervention in order ~— I quote verbatim l
__ a to restore the freedom of their country. u l


« Charles the Fifth, theyf‘proceedA—Ito state, Wishes
, to enslave ti: German nation forever and to encom-
‘ pass the fall of Germany from her old privileges and
liberties to a state of bestial and unbearable slavery,
such as exists in Spain and other places. On Fe-
bruary 15th, 1552, at Chambord, the King of France
undertakes to supply them with troops and money
and they in return urge him — again I quote their
very words << to occupy as soon as possible and
to keep the towns that are not of German speech,
viz : Cambrai, Toul, Metz, Verdun, and others of a
like description. »
So much for Metz. Is this what Count Herlling
: calls << snatching away territories by violence and in
, a criminal way? »
Eighty years after, Alsace — which had, first been
Gallic, then Roman, then Frankishu— is handed
‘ over to France in the same way and for the same
'1 reasons :
, In 1633, yet another ancestor of \Villiam II, the
l Elector of Brandenburg George William, requests
‘ the alliance of Louis XIII, begging him << to take in
l - hand the work of protection and mediation » and
l « to act with salutary promptness. >1
During the long struggle, indeed,between Catholics
l and Protestants, which had filled the first half of
l the seventeenth century, the Protestants had suffered
' defeat at Prague and the humiliating treaty of
; Lubeck; the Emperor Ferdinand II had issued in
, 1629 the Edict of Restitution, which would have
brought about the ruin of Protestantism; he, too,
tried to induce the Electors to crown his son'King
ol the Romans, a first step towards making the
1 Imperial crown hereditary. In 1634, he was again
victorious at Nordlingen. The situation grew more

perilous every hour. Then it was that the Duke
of \Vurttemberg, the Electors of Saxony and Bran-
denburg and the rest of the confederate Princes
lurned lo the framers of the Edict of Nantes and
appealed for help to the King of France. On No-
vcmber lst, 1631, by the Treaty of Paris, Louis XIII
promises them an army and financial assistance;
thc confederates, in return, specify that « the land
of Alsace shall be committed to His Maslesty’s
protection, with the fortresses and towns belonging _
thereto. »
In taking this step, moreover, the Confederates
‘ did but follow the inclinations and wishes of the
Alsatian towns themselves : on previous occasions,
in 1633 and in 1634, the County of Hanau, then
Haguenau, Saverne, Colmar, devastated both by
the Imperial troops and by the Swedes, the allies
of France, had appealed to Louis XIII for protection
and called for French garrisons to ensure their secu—
rity and to uphold their rights. 1
In this case again it was not only the Protestants, j
but the Catholics as well, the Bishop of Spires, the I
Archbishops of Treves, Mainz and Cologne, who 1 '
on finding themselves humiliated and forsaken by ‘
the Emperor called in the French King and his f 7
_ troops to their assistance. - 3
And when, towards the close of the Thirty Years" g
War, the small autonomous States, the small Repu- ‘
blics of Alsace, that might well have expected the ‘
distant might of Vienna to provide for their security '
and for the defence of their liberties, when Alsace, ,
laid waste by every army in turn, reduced to a state I
of absolute ruin, a prey to famine and pestilence,
with half her population destroyed, is about to be
sold to Spain by Austria, the Treaties of Westphalia

lay down once for all the situation and the rights
of France in Alsace and in the Metz district, asituation
endorsed, for all the quibbles of German commen-
tators, by every subsequent European agreement.

In 1760, Baron Schmettau, Minister of Prussia
in Paris, declared before the Hague Conference :
(( It is a well—established fact that the inhabitants
of Alsace are more French than the Parisians them—
selves... Whenever the report is spread abroad ,

> that the Germans intend to cross the Rhine, they
hasten up in crowds to oppose their passage.

In 1781, Strasbourg, when commemorating the
first centenary of her union to France, declares by
the mouthpiece of her representatives : << All orders
and citizens of the town of Strasbourg, having en—
joyed for one hundred years under French rule a
measure of peace and happiness unknown to their
forefathers, are unanimously resolved to give public
expression to their feelings of gratitude and attach- ’

‘ ment. » Verily, long before the Revolution, Alsace

, was French, not only by right, but also at heart.

I Ever since the idea of having a country of ones

1 ' own was first conceived, Alsace has claimed to

‘ be French.

' 7 Lastly, is there any more truth in the contention

3 that Lorraine was « Violently wrested from Ger-

5 many? » F

‘ M. Raymond Poincare could tell you better than

‘ myself that when Duke Leopold, just before his

' death in 1729, managed to bring about the fulfilment

, of his dearest wish—thebetrothal of his son, Francis III

{ to the Archduehesse Maria Theresa of Austria, the
heiress to the throne of the Hapsburgs— he was well
aware, as a shrewd politician, that the young prince,
on becoming Emperor, would not be able to remain g

Duke of Lorraine. But his choice was made : he
considered that the cession of his duchy was but
the price to be paid for the exalted situation bestowed
‘ upon his line. King Stanislas, the father-in—law of
Louis XV was given Lorraine as a life estate with
reversion to France at his demise; Francis III of
Lorraine received the Grand-Duchy of Tuscany,
where the last of the Medici was (lying, and in 1733
he who was eventually known as the Great Frede-
rick gave his ready approval to the treaty and wrote
that « his love of peace alone had brought the King
of France to accept Lorraine ».
Can this be called snatching away territories u by
‘ violations of international law » or a in a criminal
way »? Why the Germans themselves are constantly
refuting the Chancellor. Alas, Gentlemen, the
Germans have in the very camp of their enemies and
among the neutrals two far more powerful allies than
Austria, Turkey, and Bulgaria : ignorance and forget-
fulness l
Count I-Iertling went on to say that « the Revolu-
tion of 1789 swallowed up the last morsel. » What
does he mean by this? Is the reference to Mul—
, house? Mulhouse was a Republic united, ever since
the fifteenth century, with the Swiss Confederation; .
in 1798 she gave herself, of her own free will, to the
- French Republic.
, These facts may no doubt be unpalatable to the *
Germans, but try as they will, they cannot disprove
them. '
As to the vote of the National Assembly in 1871,
and to what the Chancellor is pleased to call a « dis—
annexation », the immortal protest of the deputies
of Alsace—Lorraine and the heart-rending sorrow
with which that protest was voiced from the tribune

have answered him once and for all. The Assembly
voted with the knife at its throat and to spare the
country further agonies 2 nor has this dreadful .
rending asunder of the French family failed, during
the past forty seven years, to temper the moral
discipline of every one worthy to be called a French-

Then followed the long martyrdom of Alsace-
Lorraine : the soul of France quivering in her down-
trodden provinces; the protest in the Reichstag of
all the deputies of Alsace-Lorraine stifled under
the jeers and insults of enemies to Whom generosity
is unknown ; the tragic conflict between two duties :
to emigrate in order to die in France, or to remain
on the spot so as not to leave the land and the facto-

' ries to the Germans; brothers arrayed against one
another in their respective armies ; the unanimously
adverse elections in 1887, followed by Bismarck’s
revenge : the persecutions, petty annoyances and
vexations of every description ; the passport regula- ‘
tions, the sentences, the leaden silence, the « peace
of the graveyard »; lastly, with the coming of the
twentieth century, the awakening of the Alsatian
conscience among the younger generations; the

‘ struggle for French civilisation and the French '
tongue, and for political rights; the popular demon-
strations at Noisseville, at Wissembourg; the pilgri-
‘ mages to the battlefields and to the graves of the
gallant dead, to the military reviews at Belfort and
' at Nancy;the meetings of the Souvenir associations;
and then the Saverne outburst, by one and all of
which are made manifest the eternal incompati—
bility, the deep gulf between the German mind and
the Alsatian soul, acknowledged by the Germans
themselves. (( The Alsatians love France as chil-

dren love their mother », says Professor Werner
Wittich, of Strasbourg University. a We are cam-
. ping in enemy country 1), exclaims Herr von Jagow ;
and since the war began, the countless desertions
from that hallowed land, where everything breathes
Of France, to avoid the monstrous necessity of
shooting at France, the 10.000 deportations to Ger-
many, the 6.000 years of imprisonment inflicted
«p011 the defaulters. . '
What, indeed, does the history of Alsace during
the past four centuries reveal, but the constant
struggle-between liberty and oppression? It is
the cause of liberty that France champions, when
in the-sixteenth and seventeenth centuries she fights
against the Hapsburgs, the Oppressors of conscience,
and when the forefathers of those who are laying
her waste at the present time seek their safety in
her alliance ; it is for the sake of liberty that Alsace
and Lorraine, participating in the joys, the intoxica—
tion, the victories of the Republic, and finding in
that form of Government free play for their own
genius, ‘unite with France in proclaiming before
the world the rights of man and the rights of nations _
— that principle of nationalities which, perverted
and travestied by the Germans, is now so wrongfully
brought forward against ourselves; it is against
oppression that a stand in made in 1871, before the :
National Assembly by Gambetta, Grosjean, Keller, ‘
Kuss, Scheurer-Kestner and all the other represen-

. tatives Of Alsace-Lorraine, backed by Victor Hugo, '
Edgar Quinet, Louis Blanc, Schoelcher, Sadi Carnot, ,
Henri Brisson, Charles Floquet, Arthur Ranc,

Edouard Lockroy, Edmond Adam, Clemenceau,
the foremost men of our democracy and by that
great leader Chanzy, who had so proudly held aloft

the flag of the Republic; it is against oppression
that a protest is made in the Reichstag by Teutsch
and all his colleagues of Alsace—Lorraine, the great
Dupont (les Loges, Winterer, Guerber, Simonis,
Kablé, Antoine ; against oppression, again, that the
dauntless and faithful spirit of Alsace-Lorraine has

' never ceased to struggle since the accursed year;
- that Preiss in 1897 utters his indignant warning in
the R'eichstag ; it is for liberty that ever since 1871
so many Alsatians and Lorraiuers have covered them-
selves with glory in the ranks of our army, approving
themselves the worthy descendants of Fabert, Kleber.
Kellermann, Ney, Lefebvre, Lasalle, custine, Riche-
panse, Rapp, Lobau, Schramm, Westermann, Paix—
hans, Berckheim, heroes one and all of the Napo—
leonic age ; and at the present time it is the liberty
of the world that France, all bleeding but more beau—
tiful, more resplendent than ever, has saved on the
Marne and at Verdun. ~
The nations have grasped the fact and their
Governments are agreed upon 'it : the question of
Alsace—Lorraine is no longer one concerning only
' France and Germany, as averred by Bismarck, to
whose mind the Reichsland was but the glacis of the
. Empire, while others value it cheifly for its iron ore
‘ and potash; it has become an international ques— -
; tion.
For indeed, if Germany were to remain mistress '
v of these approaches, if her formidable instruments
of aggression were to remain concentrated at a few
’ days’ march from Paris, and if, moreover, the great—
est treason known to History were to leave Eastern
Europe under her sway, such would be the military
terror she would inspire throughout the world, so
intolerable would be the yoke, that mankind, instead

of closing for ever the era of great wars, would open .
. it afresh.
Nor is this merely a territorial, political and mili-
tary question, it is a moral problem, a problem of
law, a religion, and that is why the question of Alsace-
Lorraine has become an international question. ‘1
Germany has torn up the Treaty of Frankfort.
She has therefore placed Europe once more in the ‘
legal situation that obtained before 187]. In the
eyes of all the nations, determined as they are to be
no longer liable to seizure like mere chattels, before
. the conscience of all mankind, the restitution of
Alsace—Lorraine to France, in accordance with the
Declaration of Bordeaux and the reinstatement as
French citizens of the persons designated by Art. 2
of the Treaty of Frankfort, appear henceforth as the
guarantee of the liberation of oppressed nationali-
ties, the vindication of justice and the triumph of

- BY
Mr. Welschmger
Member of the Institute, Keeper of the Records to [he
National Assembly at Bordeaux.

The Comité de l’E/fort de la France et de ses Allies
has honoured me with the request that I should
read out to you on this solemn occasion the last
protest made by the representatives of Alsace-
Lorraine at the sitting of March lst, 1871.

Before I fulfil that duty I may be permitted,
as an eye—witness, briefly to retrace the scene~and
describe the actors of that dramatic occurrence, now
forty-seven years old.

Appointed as official Recorder to the National
Assembly, I was present at that memorable sitting,

, no detail of which escaped my attention. The
proceedings, indeed, were sufficiently impressive
to remain forever in my memory as clear and well-
defined as when they had just taken place, I am able

" therefore, to describe to you exactly the general
impression produced by the declaration made by
M. Louis Grosjean, on behalf of the twenty-eight
representatives of the Moselle, the Meurthe, the '

Bas—Rhin and the Haut-Rhin, who attended the
. The Honourable, M. Grosjean, Prefect of the Haut-
Rhin department had hastened to Belfort as soon
as war was declared on July 15th, 1870, to co—operate
with Colonel Denfert-Rochereau in the defence of
that stronghold. There he bore himself valiantly.
‘ enduring the hardships of the long siege with x
the same unassuming steadfastness as the rest of the
garrison. He was informed of the fact that he
had been elected the day after the result of the ballot ‘
was made known and he was authorised to cross the
German lines to come to Bordeaux and perform the -
duty of a citizen at the National Assembly, just as
he had performed the duty of a soldier at Belfort'.
On February 15th, M. Richier, in announcing the
result of the Haut-Rhin elections, mentioned M. Gros—
jean as being third on the list, with 55.371 votes,
the first two being M. Emile Keller and Colonel
Denfert-Rochereau. The speaker went on to extol
the gallant city of Belfort, which still kept the Prus—
sians aWay from its walls, and called upon the
deeply moved Assembly to pay a tribute of patriotic
admirationto those countrymen of ours, who refused '
to surrender. .
At the never—to—be-forgotten sitting of February
17th, Emile Keller had read out the first solemn
protest of the inhabitants of Alsace and Lorraine, a "
protest known to you all, that has been read and is
remembered by the whole world, and which at the
moment thrilled the Assembly to such a degree that ,
it was on the verge of declaring itself in favour of
continuing the struggle and only consented to treat
at the pressing'solicitation of M. Thiers. That
enlightened citizen and shrewd politician was alive'

to the necessity of making the best of the present,
with an eye to the future, but though the Assembly
decided to trust to the wisdom and patriotism of its
negociators none the less had it expressed the warm—
est and most sincere sympathy for those who
had said : << We call our French fellow-countrymen,
the Governments and the nations of the whole world

‘ to witness that we hold beforehand as null and void
any deed, treaty, vote or plebiscite making over to
an alien Power all or part 01' our provinces of Alsace
and Lorraine. We hereby proclaim to be forever
inviolable the right of Alsatians and Lorrainers to

' remain members of the French nation, and we swear
and make oath, both for ourselves and for our cons—
tituents, our children and their issue, to claim that
right eternally and by every manner of means, as
against ever usurper ! »

Eleven days later, M. Louis Grosjean attended
once more, to read out the supreme declaration of
the representatives of Alsace-Lorraine, which this '
time assumed the character of the most pathetic
and most dignified of leave-takings,

This honour his patriotic conduct at Belfort had

' won for him, just as M. Emile Keller, in recognition
of his energetic leadership as commanding officer
of the Légion d’Alsace—Lorrainc, had been chosen
to read and comment upon the Declaration of Fe-

" , bruary 17th.
The National Assembly held its sittings. in the
auditorium of the Theatre Louis, fitted up for the
,. purpose. It was six o’clock in the evening. Night
had closed in and the House was lit up by the big
chandelier. The President, Jules Grévy, after a‘
lengthy debate that had commenced at one, made
known to the distracted Assembly the result of the

ballot on the Peace Preliminaries. Out of a total
of 653 votes, 546 had been cast in favour of the
. motion, 107 against. A spell of deep Silence en—
sued. After so many dramatic incidents, such as
the destitution of the Emperor and the stirring
orations of Edgar Quinet, Bamberger, Victor Hugo,
Tachard, Vacherot, Louis Blanc, Emile Keller, and
more particularly the two impressive speeches of
M. Thiers, the Assembly was somewhat overwhelmed,
and though fully expected, the result of the final
ballot added to the general feeling of oppression.
It has been stated since that the members were in
a hurry to have done with it, that the majority had
made up their minds to sacrifice the two provinces.
Now I can solemnly‘assert, as a witness and as an
Alsatian, that the patriotic considerations adduced
by M. Thiers, speaking from his heart and with
sorrowful conviction, were the only motives that
induced the National Assembly to consent to so bitter
. a sacrifice. Though taking opposite sides, majority
and minority alike suffered the same anguish, the
same grief, the same regret.

Then it was that M. Jules Grosjean craved per-
mission to address the House. With slow steps he
ascended the tribune, and amid a still deeper and
almost religious silence he uttered these lofty words,
while every now and then a quiver of suppressed
pain would betray the agony underlying theéstudied ’
composure of his attitude :

.( Made over, in despite of all justice and by a
hateful abuse of force, to alien domination, we have ,
a last duty to fulfil. '

.r We declare once again to be null and void a
compact that gives us away Without our consent.

« Our collective and individual claim to redress

remains open for ever, in the shape and to the extent
our conscience shall dictate.

- « On the point of leaving this House, in which
dignity forbids our sitting any longer, and for all
the bitterness of our sorrow, the last thought that
wells up from the depth of our hearts is one of gra-
titude towards those who for six months have not
ceased to stand by us, and of undying attachment
to the country from which we are being torn by

_ « Our best wishes will attend you, and we will
wait, with full trust in the future, for the time when
a regenerate France shall take up once ‘more the
threads of her mighty destiny.

« Your brothers of Alsace and Lorraine, though
now separated from our common family, will pre-
serve for France, while she is absent from our homes,
the full treasure of their filial affection until the day ’
comes when she shall return to fill her accustomed
place by our fire