The Civil War in North Carolina

Reminiscences and Memoirs of North Carolina and Eminent North Carolinians

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        BEAUFORT COUNTY preserves the name Henry Somerset, Duke of Beaufort, and although it is not within our proposed project, yet we cannot refrain from recording, in a short note, the worth and character of this illustrious statesman.

        We copy from the "Gentleman's Magazine," (London, 1803, vol. 73, 994,) as a beautiful description of a model gentleman:

        "DIED.--At his seat Radmenton, County of Gloucester, on 11 Oct., 1803, in his 59th year, the most noble, Henry Sommerset, Duke of Beaufort.

        "His Grace will be much lamented by his family, friends, and his numerous tenantry. He maintained the dignity of his station rather by the noble simplicity of his manners, and his proverbial hospitality, than by any attention to exterior splendor or display of fashion. It was not his taste to solicit notice by any of those atractions at which the public gaze with temporary admiration.

        "In politics, he supported a tranquil, dignified independence, and the support he generally gave to His Majesties' Ministers, could never be attributed to any motives but such as were perfectly consistent with the integrity which distinguished his life."

        He was a distinguished Free Mason; was Grand Master of England, and as such commissioned Grand Master Montford, of North Carolina, in 1771, to establish lodges in America, and from whom the Grand Lodge of North Carolina holds its charter. He became, by purchase of the Duke of Albemarle, posessed of the right as one of the Lord's Propietors of the Province, which in 1729, revested in the crownh. Worthy is the name preserved in our State.

        The capital of Beaufort preserves the name (clarum et venerable) of the immortal Washington.

        This name has been so frequently the subject of eulogy and admiration, that any attempt to enlarge on his character and services would be ridiculous excess. But we cannot refrain from printing and preserving the exquisite and truthful extract from Mr. Jefferson's works:

        Jefferson's Character of Washington.*

        * From the Domestic Life of Thos, Jefferson, by his grandaughter Sarah N. Randolph; New York, Harper & Brothers, 1872, p. 356.

        Letter from Jefferson to Dr. Walter Jones, 2d Jan., 1814:

        "I think I knew General Washington intimately and thoroughly. His mind was great and powerful without being of the very first order; his penetration strong, though not so acute as that of a Newton, Bacon, or Locke, and as far as he saw, no judgment was ever sounder; it was slow in operation, being little aided by nvention or imagination, but sure in conclusion, hence the common remark of his officers of the advantage he derived from councils of war, where, hearing all suggestions, he selected whatever was best, and certainly no General ever planned his battles more judiciously. But if deranged during the course of action, if any member of his plan was disclocated by sudden circumstances, he was slow in a readjusmtent. The consequence was that he often failed in the field, as at Monmouth, butrarely against an enemy in station, as at Boston and York. He was incapable of fear, meeting personal danger with the calmest unconcern. Perhaps the strongest feature in his haracter was prudence; never acting until every circumstance, every consideration, was maturely weightd, refraining if he saw a doubt; but, when once decided, going through with his purpose whatever obstacles opposed. His integrity was most pure; his justice most inflexible I have never known; no motives of interest, or consanguinity of friendship or hatred, being able to bias his decision. He was, indeed, in every sense of the word, a wise, a good, and a great man. His temper was naturally irritable and high-toned; but reflection and resolution had obtained a firm and habitual ascendency over it; if ever, however, it broke its bounds, he was most
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