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2006-05-25 / Columnists

Pets, Pets, Pets...

by Joanne Anderson

Historical note: The VFW poppy is symbolic of World War I, but actually Memorial Day dates back to the Civil War. National ceremonies began on May 30, 1868, when General Logan of the Grand Army of the Republic proclaimed the day as Decoration Day to commemorate the sacrifices of all fallen soldiers in the War Between the States. On that first Memorial Day 5,000 participants put flowers on the graves of 20,000 Union and Confederate soldiers buried in Arlington Cemetery.

Even though he didn't die on the battlefield, Abraham Lincoln was also a casualty of the Civil War. His assassination was less than a week after Lee's surrender. So much has been written about the virtues of our 16th President his integrity, work ethic, humor and honesty. One animal anecdote is an excellent example of President Lincoln's tenderness. The following, an excerpt from the famous Carl Sandburg b i o g r a p h y, comes from the Abraham Lincoln Research Site:

"....near the end of the Civil War, Abraham and his family had been invited to visit General Ulysses S. Grant's headquarters in City Point, Virginia. The trip took place in late March 1865 about three weeks before the assassination. During his visit to City Point, the President happened to be in the telegraph hut on the day that Grant's army began the final advance of the Civil War.

In the hut Lincoln came upon three kittens. They appeared to be lost and were wandering around and meowing. Abraham picked up one of the kittens and asked, "Where is your mother?" A person standing nearby said, "The mother is dead." The President continued to pet the little kitten and said, "Then she can't grieve as many a poor mother is grieving for a son lost in battle." he would tell the cook to take good care of them. Colonel Horace Porter watched the President and recalled, "He would wipe their eyes tenderly with his handkerchief, stroke their smooth coats, and listen to them purring their gratitude to him."

"Quite a sight it was", thought Porter, "at an army headquarters, on the eve of a great military crisis in the nation's history, to see the hand which had affixed the signature to the Emancipation Proclamation and had signed the commissions...from the general-inchief to the lowest lieutenant, tenderly caressing three stray kittens."

Many kittens, cats, and dogs at Babylon Town Shelter (643-9270) Lamar St. W. Babylon are waiting for someone to take good care of them too. Two adorable senior dogs in the Puppy Room are featured here. "Snaggle Tooth" is a darling, older male Lhasa found as a stray. He has a pronounced under bite like many of his breed. "Pebble" is a sweet, teeny 9 year old Chihuahua/terrier who is bewildered by her new predicament. Her owner entered a nursing home, and the

man's family

turned her into the shelter. See more pets for adoption on the Babylon Shelter Petfinder website.

Females: "Bambi"a young, friendly retriever/shepherd in Cage 91; the Canaan Dog mix in Cage 85 who raised 9 puppies at the shelter.

Males: "Geezer"a happy Shepherd/ Rottie in Cage 43; a purebred Pekingese in the Puppy Room.

Cats: "Sudoku"incredibly handsome longhair cat in the Cat Colonyyoung and neut. The "Smudge Sisters"his shorthaired friends. They were all left behind when an owner moved.

Low Cost Spay/Neuter for your pet: Island RescueBay Shore631-9688700.

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