That clever and brilliant genius, McDougall, who represented California in the United States Senate, was like many others of his class somewhat addicted to fiery stimulants, and unable to battle long with them without showing the effect of the struggle. Even in his most exhausted condition he was, however, brilliant at repartee; but one night, at a supper of journalists given to the late George D. Prentice, a genius of the same mold and the same unfortunate habit, he found a foeman worthy of his steel in General John Cochrane. McDougall had taken offense at some anti-slavery sentiments which had been uttered—it was in war times—and late in the evening got on his legs for the tenth time to make a reply. The spirit did not move him to utterance, however; on the contrary, it quite deprived him of the power of speech; and after an ineffectual attempt at speech he suddenly concluded:
"Those are my sentiments, sir, and my name's McDougall."
"I beg the gentleman's pardon," said General Cochrane, springing to his feet; "but what was that last remark?"
McDougall pronounced it again; "my name's McDougall."
"There must be some error," said Cochrane, gravely. "I have known Mr. McDougall many years, and there never was a time when as late as twelve o'clock at night he knew what his name was."