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Source: San Diego Union and Daily Bee
Source type: newspaper
Document type: article
Document title: “A Nation’s Grief”
Author(s): anonymous
City of publication: San Diego, California
Date of publication: 24 September 1901
Volume number: none
Issue number: none
Pagination: 5

“A Nation’s Grief.” San Diego Union and Daily Bee 24 Sept. 1901: p. 5.
full text
William G. Baker; William McKinley (death: public response: Buffalo, NY); William McKinley (mourning); William McKinley (lying in state: Buffalo, NY); Buffalo, NY (City Hall).
Named persons
Amelia Baker; William G. Baker; William McKinley.


A Nation’s Grief


A Letter from Wm. G. Baker Who the President Lying in State
at the Buffalo City Hall. [sic]

     Mrs. William G. Baker, of Sorrento, has received a letter recently from her husband who is, or was, in Buffalo at the time of the death of President McKinley, and saw the martyr lying in state at the state capital. He describes some of the scenes and remarks that a feeling came over him when he gazed at the dead form, which gave him knowledge of why strong men wept. In part of his letter he writes:
     “I am here in Buffalo—in the heart of the nation’s great grief—and at a time when it has reached its greatest depth, in the death of the president early this morning. I cannot describe the situation here. One would have to stand as I did and see the multitude of bowed heads, the sea of faces all bearing the same expression, that of great grief mingled, I might almost say, with terror, to understand how these people feel. The thought came to me that if I had been set down here, after some terrible earthquake had for days shaken and rent the city from one end to the other, and every family had sustained a personal loss, the effect might have been similar. The day the president lay in state in the city hall, I stood in (I will not say in line but in) a block of solid humanity, the qual [sic] of which I have never witnessed, for three hours. Women fainted and children cried, while many an old veteran dropped from exhaustion. By a big effort, however, I was able to hold out, and obtained a last look at our martyred president. A peculiar feeling came over me as I gazed, and I understood then why strong men wept.
     [“]The city hall was beautifully and appropriately draped, folds upon folds of rich cashmere in black and white, so simple yet so grand, while four large flags of our country formed a cross. Truly the decorations spoke eloquently of a nation’s grief. I will be in the city until after the funeral cortege leaves for Washington, and will have much to tell of what I saw when I come home.”



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