James G. Blaine, U.S. representative from Maine's 3rd District, sent a brief telegram to George F. Shepley, a Portland lawyer who was well-known for his service as commander of the 12th Maine Regiment and military governor of Louisiana during the Civil War.
He told Shepley he was "announced" to speak at Bath on Thursday and requested that he speak at Rockland on Saturday, Aug. 15, 1868.
Shepley received frequent invitations to speak at political events after the war. Before the war, he was a Democrat. He switched to the Republican Party after the war.
The telegram, dated Aug. 4, 1868 at Augusta reads: "You are announced for Bath Thursday evening of this week. May I rely on you to speak at a mass convention at Rockland Saturday August fifteenth (15th) You can leave Portland Friday night & be back there by eight oclock Monday morning ans by telegraph & don't decline."
It is signed J.G. Blaine.