The Writings of Abraham Lincoln, v5
Abraham Lincoln

Part 6 out of 8

constitutional republic or democracy--a government of the people by
the same people--can or cannot maintain its territorial integrity
against its own domestic foes. It presents the question whether
discontented individuals, too few in numbers to control
administration according to organic law in any case, can always, upon
the pretenses made in this case, or on any other pretenses, or
arbitrarily without any pretense, break up their government, and thus
practically put an end to free government upon the earth. It forces
us to ask: Is there in all republics this inherent and fatal
weakness? Must a government, of necessity, be too strong for the
liberties of its own people, or too weak to maintain its own

So viewing the issue, no choice was left but to call out the war
power of the government, and so to resist force employed for its
destruction by force for its preservation.

The call was made, and the response of the country was most
gratifying, surpassing in unanimity and spirit the most sanguine
expectation. Yet none of the States commonly called slave States,
except Delaware, gave a regiment through regular State organization.
A few regiments have been organized within some others of those
States by individual enterprise, and received into the government
service. Of course the seceded States, so called (and to which Texas
had been joined about the time of the inauguration), gave no troops
to the cause of the Union.

The border States, so called, were not uniform in their action, some
of them being almost for the Union, while in others--as Virginia,
North Carolina, Tennessee, and Arkansas--the Union sentiment was
nearly repressed and silenced. The course taken in Virginia was the
most remarkable--perhaps the most important. A convention elected by
the people of that State to consider this very question of disrupting
the Federal Union was in session at the capital of Virginia when Fort
Sumter fell. To this body the people had chosen a large majority of
professed Union men. Almost immediately after the fall of Sumter,
many members of that majority went over to the original disunion
minority, and with them adopted an ordinance for withdrawing the
State from the Union. Whether this change was wrought by their great
approval of the assault upon Sumter, or their great resentment at the
government's resistance to that assault, is not definitely known.
Although they submitted the ordinance for ratification to a vote of
the people, to be taken on a day then somewhat more than a month
distant, the convention and the Legislature (which was also in
session at the same time and place), with leading men of the State
not members of either, immediately commenced acting as if the State
were already out of the Union. They pushed military preparations
vigorously forward all over the State. They seized the United States
armory at Harper's Ferry, and the navy-yard at Gosport, near Norfolk.
They received perhaps invited--into their State large bodies of
troops, with their warlike appointments, from the so-called seceded
States. They formally entered into a treaty of temporary alliance
and co-operation with the so-called "Confederate States," and sent
members to their congress at Montgomery. And finally, they permitted
the insurrectionary government to be transferred to their capital at

The people of Virginia have thus allowed this giant insurrection to
make its nest within her borders; and this government has no choice
left but to deal with it where it finds it. And it has the less
regret as the loyal citizens have, in due form, claimed its
protection. Those loyal citizens this government is bound to
recognize and protect, as being Virginia.

In the border States, so called,--in fact, the middle States,--there
are those who favor a policy which they call "armed neutrality"; that
is, an arming of those States to prevent the Union forces passing one
way, or the disunion the other, over their soil. This would be
disunion completed. Figuratively speaking, it would be the building
of an impassable wall along the line of separation--and yet not quite
an impassable one, for under the guise of neutrality it would tie the
hands of Union men and freely pass supplies from among them to the
insurrectionists, which it could not do as an open enemy. At a
stroke it would take all the trouble off the hands of secession,
except only what proceeds from the external blockade. It would do
for the disunionists that which, of all things, they most desire--
feed them well and give them disunion without a struggle of their
own. It recognizes no fidelity to the Constitution, no obligation to
maintain the Union; and while very many who have favored it are
doubtless loyal citizens, it is, nevertheless, very injurious in

Recurring to the action of the government, it may be stated that at
first a call was made for 75,000 militia; and, rapidly following
this, a proclamation was issued for closing the ports of the
insurrectionary districts by proceedings in the nature of blockade.
So far all was believed to be strictly legal. At this point the
insurrectionists announced their purpose to enter upon the practice
of privateering.

Other calls were made for volunteers to serve for three years, unless
sooner discharged, and also for large additions to the regular army
and navy. These measures, whether strictly legal or not, were
ventured upon, under what appeared to be a popular demand and a
public necessity; trusting then, as now, that Congress would readily
ratify them. It is believed that nothing has been done beyond the
constitutional competency of Congress.

Soon after the first call for militia, it was considered a duty to
authorize the commanding general in proper cases, according to his
discretion, to suspend the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus,
or, in other words, to arrest and detain, without resort to the
ordinary processes and forms of law, such individuals as he might
deem dangerous to the public safety. This authority has purposely
been exercised but very sparingly. Nevertheless, the legality and
propriety of what has been done under it are questioned, and the
attention of the country has been called to the proposition that one
who has sworn to "take care that the laws be faithfully executed"
should not himself violate them. Of course some consideration was
given to the questions of power and propriety before this matter was
acted upon. The whole of the laws which were required to be
faithfully executed were being resisted and failing of execution in
nearly one third of the States. Must they be allowed to finally fail
of execution, even had it been perfectly clear that by the use of the
means necessary to their execution some single law, made in such
extreme tenderness of the citizen's liberty that, practically, it
relieves more of the guilty than of the innocent, should to a very
limited extent be violated? To state the question more directly, are
all the laws but one to go unexecuted, and the government itself go
to pieces lest that one be violated? Even in such a case, would not
the official oath be broken if the government should be overthrown
when it was believed that disregarding the single law would tend to
preserve it? But it was not believed that this question was
presented. It was not believed that any law was violated. The
provision of the Constitution that "the privilege of the writ of
habeas corpus shall not be suspended, unless when, in cases of
rebellion or invasion, the public safety may require it," is
equivalent to a provision--is a provision--that such privilege may be
suspended when, in case of rebellion or invasion, the public safety
does require it. It was decided that we have a case of rebellion,
and that the public safety does require the qualified suspension of
the privilege of the writ which was authorized to be made. Now it is
insisted that Congress, and not the executive, is vested with this
power. But the Constitution itself is silent as to which or who is
to exercise the power; and as the provision was plainly made for a
dangerous emergency, it cannot be believed the framers of the
instrument intended that in every case the danger should run its
course until Congress could be called together, the very assembling
of which might be prevented, as was intended in this case, by the

No more extended argument is now offered, as an opinion at some
length will probably be presented by the attorney-general. Whether
there shall be any legislation upon the subject, and if any, what, is
submitted entirely to the better judgment of Congress.

The forbearance of this government had been so extraordinary and so
long continued as to lead some foreign nations to shape their action
as if they supposed the early destruction of our national Union was
probable. While this, on discovery, gave the executive some concern,
he is now happy to say that the sovereignty and rights of the United
States are now everywhere practically respected by foreign powers;
and a general sympathy with the country is manifested throughout the

The reports of the Secretaries of the Treasury, War, and the Navy
will give the information in detail deemed necessary and convenient
for your deliberation and action; while the executive and all the
departments will stand ready to supply omissions, or to communicate
new facts considered important for you to know.

It is now recommended that you give the legal means for making this
contest a short and decisive one: that you place at the control of
the government for the work at least four hundred thousand men and
$400,000,000. That number of men is about one-tenth of those of
proper ages within the regions where, apparently, all are willing to
engage; and the sum is less than a twenty-third part of the money
value owned by the men who seem ready to devote the whole. A debt of
$600,000,000 now is a less sum per head than was the debt of our
Revolution when we came out of that struggle; and the money value in
the country now bears even a greater proportion to what it was then
than does the population. Surely each man has as strong a motive now
to preserve our liberties as each had then to establish them.

A right result at this time will be worth more to the world than ten
times the men and ten times the money. The evidence reaching us from
the country leaves no doubt that the material for the work is
abundant, and that it needs only the hand of legislation to give it
legal sanction, and the hand of the executive to give it practical
shape and efficiency. One of the greatest perplexities of the
government is to avoid receiving troops faster than it can provide
for them. In a word, the people will save their government if the
government itself will do its part only indifferently well.

It might seem, at first thought, to be of little difference whether
the present movement at the South be called "secession" or
"rebellion." The movers, however, well understand the difference. At
the beginning they knew they could never raise their treason to any
respectable magnitude by any name which implies violation of law.
They knew their people possessed as much of moral sense, as much of
devotion to law and order, and as much pride in and reverence for the
history and government of their common country as any other civilized
and patriotic people. They knew they could make no advancement
directly in the teeth of these strong and noble sentiments.
Accordingly, they commenced by an insidious debauching of the public
mind. They invented an ingenious sophism which, if conceded, was
followed by perfectly logical steps, through all the incidents, to
the complete destruction of the Union. The sophism itself is that
any State of the Union may consistently with the national
Constitution, and therefore lawfully and peacefully, withdraw from
the Union without the consent of the Union or of any other State.
The little disguise that the supposed right is to be exercised only
for just cause, themselves to be the sole judges of its justice, is
too thin to merit any notice.

With rebellion thus sugar-coated they have been drugging the public
mind of their section for more than thirty years, and until at length
they have brought many good men to a willingness to take up arms
against the government the day after some assemblage of men have
enacted the farcical pretense of taking their State out of the Union,
who could have been brought to no such thing the day before.

This sophism derives much, perhaps the whole, of its currency from
the assumption that there is some omnipotent and sacred supremacy
pertaining to a State--to each State of our Federal Union. Our
States have neither more nor less power than that reserved to them in
the Union by the Constitution--no one of them ever having been a
State out of the Union. The original ones passed into the Union even
before they cast off their British colonial dependence; and the new
ones each came into the Union directly from a condition of
dependence, excepting Texas. And even Texas in its temporary
independence was never designated a State. The new ones only took
the designation of States on coming into the Union, while that name
was first adopted for the old ones in and by the Declaration of
Independence. Therein the "United Colonies" were declared to be
"free and independent States"; but even then the object plainly was
not to declare their independence of one another or of the Union, but
directly the contrary, as their mutual pledge and their mutual action
before, at the time, and afterward, abundantly show. The express
plighting of faith by each and all of the original thirteen in the
Articles of Confederation, two years later, that the Union shall be
perpetual, is most conclusive. Having never been States either in
substance or in name outside of the Union, whence this magical
omnipotence of "State rights," asserting a claim of power to
lawfully destroy the Union itself? Much is said about the
"sovereignty" of the States; but the word even is not in the national
Constitution, nor, as is believed, in any of the State constitutions.
What is "sovereignty" in the political sense of the term? Would it be
far wrong to define it as "a political community without a political
superior"? Tested by this, no one of our States except Texas ever was
a sovereignty. And even Texas gave up the character on coming into
the Union; by which act she acknowledged the Constitution of the
United States, and the laws and treaties of the United States made in
pursuance of the Constitution, to be for her the supreme law of the
land. The States have their status in the Union, and they have no
other legal status. If they break from this, they can only do so
against law and by revolution. The Union, and not themselves
separately, procured their independence and their liberty. By
conquest or purchase the Union gave each of them whatever of
independence or liberty it has. The Union is older than any of the
States, and, in fact, it created them as States. Originally some
dependent colonies made the Union, and, in turn, the Union threw off
their old dependence for them, and made them States, such as they
are. Not one of them ever had a State constitution independent of
the Union. Of course, it is not forgotten that all the new States
framed their constitutions before they entered the Union
nevertheless, dependent upon and preparatory to coming into the

Unquestionably the States have the powers and rights reserved to them
in and by the national Constitution; but among these surely are not
included all conceivable powers, however mischievous or destructive,
but, at most, such only as were known in the world at the time as
governmental powers; and certainly a power to destroy the government
itself had never been known as a governmental, as a merely
administrative power. This relative matter of national power and
State rights, as a principle, is no other than the principle of
generality and locality. Whatever concerns the whole should be
confided to the whole--to the General Government; while whatever
concerns only the State should be left exclusively to the State.
This is all there is of original principle about it. Whether the
national Constitution in defining boundaries between the two has
applied the principle with exact accuracy, is not to be questioned.
We are all bound by that defining, without question.

What is now combated is the position that secession is consistent
with the Constitution--is lawful and peaceful. It is not contended
that there is any express law for it; and nothing should ever be
implied as law which leads to unjust or absurd consequences. The
nation purchased with money the countries out of which several of
these States were formed. Is it just that they shall go off without
leave and without refunding? The nation paid very large sums (in the
aggregate, I believe, nearly a hundred millions) to relieve Florida
of the aboriginal tribes. Is it just that she shall now be off
without consent or without making any return? The nation is now in
debt for money applied to the benefit of these so-called seceding
States in common with the rest. Is it just either that creditors
shall go unpaid or the remaining States pay the whole? A part of the
present national debt was contracted to pay the old debts of Texas.
Is it just that she shall leave and pay no part of this herself?

Again, if one State may secede, so may another; and when all shall
have seceded, none is left to pay the debts. Is this quite just for
creditors? Did we notify them of this sage view of ours when we
borrowed their money? If we now recognize this doctrine by allowing
the seceders to go in peace, it is difficult to see what we can do if
others choose to go or to extort terms upon which they will promise
to remain.

The seceders insist that our Constitution admits of secession. They
have assumed to make a national constitution of their own, in which
of necessity they have either discarded or retained the right of
secession as they insist it exists in ours. If they have discarded
it, they thereby admit that on principle it ought not to be in ours.
If they have retained it, by their own construction of ours, they
show that to be consistent they must secede from one another whenever
they shall find it the easiest way of settling their debts, or
effecting any other selfish or unjust object. The principle itself
is one of disintegration and upon which no government can possibly

If all the States save one should assert the power to drive that one
out of the Union, it is presumed the whole class of seceder
politicians would at once deny the power and denounce the act as the
greatest outrage upon State rights. But suppose that precisely the
same act, instead of being called "driving the one out," should be
called "the seceding of the others from that one," it would be
exactly what the seceders claim to do, unless, indeed, they make the
point that the one, because it is a minority, may rightfully do what
the others, because they are a majority, may not rightfully do.
These politicians are subtle and profound on the rights of
minorities. They are not partial to that power which made the
Constitution and speaks from the preamble calling itself "We, the

It may well be questioned whether there is to-day a majority of the
legally qualified voters of any State except perhaps South Carolina
in favor of disunion. There is much reason to believe that the Union
men are the majority in many, if not in every other one, of the so-
called seceded States. The contrary has not been demonstrated in any
one of them. It is ventured to affirm this even of Virginia and
Tennessee; for the result of an election held in military camps,
where the bayonets are all on one side of the question voted upon,
can scarcely be considered as demonstrating popular sentiment. At
such an election, all that large class who are at once for the Union
and against coercion would be coerced to vote against the Union.

It may be affirmed without extravagance that the free institutions we
enjoy have developed the powers and improved the condition of our
whole people beyond any example in the world. Of this we now have a
striking and an impressive illustration. So large an army as the
government has now on foot was never before known without a soldier
in it but who has taken his place there of his own free choice. But
more than this, there are many single regiments whose members, one
and another, possess full practical knowledge of all the arts,
sciences, professions, and whatever else, whether useful or elegant,
is known in the world; and there is scarcely one from which there
could not be selected a President, a Cabinet, a Congress, and perhaps
a court, abundantly competent to administer the government itself.
Nor do I say this is not true also in the army of our late friends,
now adversaries in this contest; but if it is, so much better the
reason why the government which has conferred such benefits on both
them and us should not be broken up. Whoever in any section proposes
to abandon such a government would do well to consider in deference
to what principle it is that he does it; what better he is likely to
get in its stead; whether the substitute will give, or be intended to
give, so much of good to the people. There are some foreshadowings
on this subject. Our adversaries have adopted some declarations of
independence in which, unlike the good old one, penned by Jefferson,
they omit the words "all men are created equal." Why? They have
adopted a temporary national constitution, in the preamble of which,
unlike our good old one, signed by Washington, they omit "We, the
People," and substitute, "We, the deputies of the sovereign and
independent States." Why? Why this deliberate pressing out of view
the rights of men and the authority of the people?

This is essentially a people's contest. On the side of the Union it
is a struggle for maintaining in the world that form and substance of
government whose leading object is to elevate the condition of men to
lift artificial weights from all shoulders; to clear the paths of
laudable pursuit for all; to afford all an unfettered start, and a
fair chance in the race of life. Yielding to partial and temporary
departures, from necessity; this is the leading object of the
government for whose existence we contend.

I am most happy to believe that the plain people understand and
appreciate this. It is worthy of note that, while in this the
government's hour of trial large numbers of those in the army and
navy who have been favored with the offices have resigned and proved
false to the hand which had pampered them, not one common soldier or
common sailor is known to have deserted his flag.

Great honor is due to those officers who remained true, despite the
example of their treacherous associates; but the greatest honor, and
most important fact of all, is the unanimous firmness of the common
soldiers and common sailors. To the last man, so far as known, they
have successfully resisted the traitorous efforts of those whose
commands, but an hour before, they obeyed as absolute law. This is
the patriotic instinct of the plain people. They understand, without
an argument, that the destroying of the government which was made by
Washington means no good to them.

Our popular government has often been called an experiment. Two
points in it our people have already settled--the successful
establishing and the successful administering of it. One still
remains--its successful maintenance against a formidable internal
attempt to overthrow it. It is now for them to demonstrate to the
world that those who can fairly carry an election can also suppress a
rebellion; that ballots are the rightful and peaceful successors of
bullets; and that when ballots have fairly and constitutionally
decided, there can be no successful appeal back to bullets; that
there can be no successful appeal, except to ballots themselves, at
succeeding elections. Such will be a great lesson of peace:
teaching men that what they cannot take by an election, neither can
they take it by a war; teaching all the folly of being the beginners
of a war.

Lest there be some uneasiness in the minds of candid men as to what
is to be the course of the government toward the Southern States
after the rebellion shall have been suppressed, the executive deems
it proper to say it will be his purpose then, as ever, to be guided
by the Constitution and the laws; and that he probably will have no
different understanding of the powers and duties of the Federal
Government relatively to the rights of the States and the people,
under the Constitution, than that expressed in the inaugural address.

He desires to preserve the government, that it may be administered
for all as it was administered by the men who made it. Loyal
citizens everywhere have the right to claim this of their government,
and the government has no right to withhold or neglect it. It is not
perceived that in giving it there is any coercion, any conquest, or
any subjugation, in any just sense of those terms.

The Constitution provides, and all the States have accepted the
provision, that "the United States shall guarantee to every State in
this Union a republican form of government." But if a State may
lawfully go out of the Union, having done so it may also discard the
republican form of government, so that to prevent its going out is an
indispensable means to the end of maintaining the guarantee
mentioned; and when an end is lawful and obligatory, the
indispensable means to it are also lawful and obligatory.

It was with the deepest regret that the executive found the duty of
employing the war power in defense of the government forced upon him.
He could but perform this duty or surrender the existence of the
government. No compromise by public servants could, in this case, be
a cure; not that compromises are not often proper, but that no
popular government can long survive a marked precedent that those who
carry an election can only save the government from immediate
destruction by giving up the main point upon which the people gave
the election. The people themselves, and not their servants, can
safely reverse their own deliberate decisions.

As a private citizen the executive could not have consented that
these institutions shall perish; much less could he in betrayal of so
vast and so sacred a trust as these free people had confided to him.
He felt that he had no moral right to shrink, nor even to count the
chances of his own life, in what might follow. In full view of his
great responsibility he has, so far, done what he has deemed his
duty. You will now, according to your own judgment, perform yours.
He sincerely hopes that your views and your action may so accord with
his as to assure all faithful citizens who have been disturbed in
their rights of a certain and speedy restoration to them, under the
Constitution and the laws.

And having thus chosen our course, without guile and with pure
purpose, let us renew our trust in God, and go forward without fear
and with manly hearts.





MY DEAR SIR:--Please ask the Comr. of Indian Affairs, and of the
Gen'l Land Office to come with you, and see me at once. I want the
assistance of all of you in overhauling the list of appointments a
little before I send them to the Senate.

Yours truly,



In answer to the resolution of the House of Representatives of the
9th instant, requesting a copy of correspondence upon the subject of
the incorporation of the Dominican republic with the Spanish
monarchy, I transmit a report from the Secretary of State; to whom
the resolution was referred.

WASHINGTON, July 11, 1861.



I transmit to Congress a copy of correspondence between the Secretary
of State and her Britannic Majesty's envoy extraordinary and minister
plenipotentiary accredited to this government, relative to the
exhibition of the products of industry of all nations, which is to
take place at London in the course of next year. As citizens of the
United States may justly pride themselves upon their proficiency in
industrial arts, it is desirable that they should have proper
facilities toward taking part in the exhibition. With this view I
recommend such legislation by Congress at this session as may be
necessary for that purpose.


WASHINGTON, July 16, 1861



As the United States have, in common with Great Britain and France, a
deep interest in the preservation and development of the fisheries
adjacent to the northeastern coast and islands of this continent, it
seems proper that we should concert with the governments of those
countries such measures as may be conducive to those important
objects. With this view I transmit to Congress a copy of a
correspondence between the Secretary of State and the British
minister here, in which the latter proposes, on behalf of his
government, the appointment of a joint commission to inquire into the
matter, in order that such ulterior measures may be adopted as may be
advisable for the objects proposed. Such legislation recommended as
may be necessary to enable the executive to provide for a commissioner
on behalf of the United States:






I have agreed, and do agree, that the two Indian regiments named
within shall be accepted if the act of Congress shall admit it. Let
there be no further question about it.



JULY 23, 1861

1. Let the plan for making the blockade effective be pushed forward
with all possible despatch.

2. Let the volunteer forces at Fort Monroe and vicinity under
General Butler be constantly drilled, disciplined, and instructed
without more for the present.

3. Let Baltimore be held as now, with a gentle but firm and certain

4. Let the force now under Patterson or Banks be strengthened and made
secure in its position.

5. Let the forces in Western Virginia act till further orders
according to instructions or orders from General McClellan.

6. [Let] General Fremont push forward his organization and operations
in the West as rapidly as possible, giving rather special attention
to Missouri.

7. Let the forces late before Manassas, except the three-months men,
be reorganized as rapidly as possible in their camps here and about

8. Let the three-months forces who decline to enter the longer service
be discharged as rapidly as circumstances will permit.

9. Let the new volunteer forces be brought forward as fast as
possible, and especially into the camps on the two sides of the river

When the foregoing shall be substantially attended to:

1. Let Manassas Junction (or some point on one or other of the
railroads near it) and Strasburg be seized, and permanently held,
with an open line from Washington to Manassas, and an open line from
Harper's Ferry to Strasburg the military men to find the way of doing

2. This done, a joint movement from Cairo on Memphis; and from
Cincinnati on East Tennessee.


WASHINGTON, D.C., July 24, 1861


SIR:--Together with the regiments of three years' volunteers which
the government already has in service in your State, enough to make
eight in all, if tendered in a reasonable time, will be accepted, the
new regiments to be taken, as far as convenient, from the three
months' men and officers just discharged, and to be organized,
equipped, and sent forward as fast as single regiments are ready, On
the same terms as were those already in the service from that State.

Your obedient servant,


This order is entered in the War Department, and the Governor of New
Jersey is authorized to furnish the regiments with wagons and horses.

S. CAMERON, Secretary of War.



In answer to the resolution of the House of Representatives of the
22d instant; requesting a copy of the correspondence between this,
government and foreign powers with reference to maritime right, I
transmit a report from the Secretary of State.


WASHINGTON, July 25, 1861



In answer to the resolution of the House of Representatives of the
15th instant, requesting a copy of the correspondence between this
government and foreign powers on the subject of the existing
insurrection in the United States, I transmit a report from the
Secretary of State.

WASHINGTON, July 25, 1861.




MR CHASE:--The bearer, Mr._____ , wants ________in the custom house
at Baltimore. If his recommendations are satisfactory, and I
recollect them to have been so, the fact that he is urged by the
Methodists should be in his favor, as they complain of us some.




In answer to the resolution of the House of Representatives of the
24th instant, asking the grounds, reasons, and evidence upon which
the police Commissioners of Baltimore were arrested and are now
detained as prisoners at Port McHenry, I have to state that it is
judged to be incompatible with the public interest at this time to
furnish the information called for by the resolution.





In answer to the resolution of the Senate of the 19th instant
requesting information concerning the quasi armistice alluded to in
my message of the 4th instant, I transmit a report from the Secretary
of the Navy.

JULY 30, 1861



In answer to the resolution of the Senate of the 23d instant
requesting information concerning the imprisonment of Lieutenant John
J. Worden (John L. Worden) of the United States navy, I transmit a
report from the Secretary of the Navy.

July 30, 1861


JULY 31, 1861

The Marshals of the United States in the vicinity of forts where
political prisoners are held will supply decent lodging and
sustenance for such prisoners unless they shall prefer to provide in
those respects for themselves, in which case they will be allowed to
do so by the commanding officer in charge.

Approved, and the Secretary of the State will transmit the order to
the Marshals, to the Lieutenant-General, and the Secretary of the




In answer to the resolution of the House of Representatives of
yesterday, requesting information regarding the imprisonment of loyal
citizens of the United States by the forces now in rebellion against
this government, I transmit a report from the Secretary of State, and
the copy of a telegraphic despatch by which it was accompanied.


WASHINGTON, August 2, 1861.



In answer to the resolution of your honorable body of date July 31,
1861, requesting the President to inform the Senate whether the Hon.
James H. Lane, a member of that body from Kansas, has been appointed
a brigadier-general in the army of the United States, and if so,
whether he has accepted such appointment, I have the honor to
transmit herewith certain papers, numbered 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7,
which, taken together, explain themselves, and which contain all the
information I possess upon the questions propounded.

It was my intention, as shown by my letter of June 20, 1861, to
appoint Hon. James H. Lane, of Kansas, a brigadier-general of United
States volunteers in anticipation of the act of Congress, since
passed, for raising such volunteers; and I have no further knowledge
upon the subject, except as derived from the papers herewith





MY DEAR SIR:--The within paper, as you see, is by HON. John S. Phelps
and HON. Frank P. Blair, Jr., both members of the present Congress
from Missouri. The object is to get up an efficient force of
Missourians in the southwestern part of the State. It ought to be
done, and Mr. Phelps ought to have general superintendence of it.
I see by a private report to me from the department that eighteen
regiments are already accepted from Missouri. Can it not be arranged
that part of them (not yet organized, as I understand) may be taken
from the locality mentioned and put under the control of Mr. Phelps,
and let him have discretion to accept them for a shorter term than
three years--or the war--understanding, however, that he will get
them for the full term if he can? I hope this can be done, because
Mr. Phelps is too zealous and efficient and understands his ground
too well for us to lose his service. Of course provision for arming,
equipping, etc., must be made. Mr. Phelps is here, and wishes to
carry home with him authority for this matter.

Yours truly,

AUGUST 12, 1861.


A Proclamation.

Whereas a joint committee of both houses of Congress has waited on
the President of the United States and requested him to "recommend a
day of public humiliation, prayer, and fasting to be observed by the
people of the United States with religious solemnities and the
offering of fervent supplications to Almighty God for the safety and
welfare of these States, His blessings on their arms, and a speedy
restoration of peace"; and

Whereas it is fit and becoming in all people at all times to
acknowledge and revere the supreme government of God, to bow in
humble submission to His chastisements, to confess and deplore their
sins and transgressions in the full conviction that the fear of the
Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and to pray with all fervency and
contrition for the pardon of their past offences and for a blessing
upon their present and prospective action; and

Whereas when our own beloved country, once, by the blessing of God,
united, prosperous, and happy, is now afflicted with faction and
civil war, it is peculiarly fit for us to recognize the hand of God
in this terrible visitation, and in sorrowful remembrance of our own
faults and crimes as a nation and as individuals to humble ourselves
before Him and to pray for His mercy-to pray that we may be spared
further punishment, though most justly deserved, that our arms may be
blessed and made effectual for the re-establishment of order, law,
and peace throughout the wide extent of our country, and that the
inestimable boon of civil and religious liberty, earned under His
guidance and blessing by the labors and sufferings of our fathers,
may be restored in all its original excellence

Therefore I, Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States, do
appoint the last Thursday in September next as a day of humiliation,
prayer, and fasting for all the people of the nation. And I do
earnestly recommend to all the people, and especially to all
ministers and teachers of religion of all denominations and to all
heads of families, to observe and keep that day according to their
several creeds and modes of worship in all humility and with all
religious solemnity, to the end that the united prayer of the nation
may ascend to the Throne of Grace and bring down plentiful blessings
upon our country.

In testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand
and caused the seal of the United States to
[SEAL.] be affixed, this twelfth day of August, A. D.
1861, and of the independence of the United
States of America the eighty-sixth.


By the President

WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary o f State.




MY DEAR SIR:--You must make a job for the bearer of this--make a job
of it with the collector and have it done. You can do it for me and
you must.

Yours as ever,




Start your four regiments to St. Louis at the earliest moment
possible. Get such harness as may be necessary for your rifled gums.
Do not delay a single regiment, but hasten everything forward as soon
as any one regiment is ready. Have your three additional regiments
organized at once. We shall endeavor to send you the arms this week.


WASHINGTON, August 15, 1861


Been answering your messages since day before yesterday. Do you
receive the answers? The War Department has notified all the
governors you designate to forward all available force. So
telegraphed you. Have you received these messages? Answer



A Proclamation.

Whereas on the fifteenth day of April, eighteen hundred and sixty-
one, the President of the United States, in view of an insurrection
against the laws, Constitution, and government of the United States
which had broken out within the States of South Carolina, Georgia,
Alabama, Florida, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Texas, and in pursuance
of the provisions of the act entitled "An act to provide for calling
forth the militia to execute the laws of the Union, suppress
insurrections, and repel invasions, and to repeal the act now in
force for that purpose," approved February twenty-eighth, seventeen
hundred and ninety-five, did call forth the militia to suppress said
insurrection, and to cause the laws of the Union to be duly executed,
and the insurgents have failed to disperse by the time directed by
the President; and whereas such insurrection has since broken out and
yet exists within the States of Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee,
and Arkansas; and whereas the insurgents in all the said States claim
to act under the authority thereof, and such claim is not disclaimed
or repudiated by the persons exercising the functions of government
in such State or States, or in the part or parts thereof in which
such combinations exist, nor has such insurrection been suppressed by
said States:

Now, therefore, I, Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States,
in pursuance of an act of Congress approved July thirteen, eighteen
hundred and sixty-one, do hereby declare that the inhabitants of the
said States of Georgia, South Carolina, Virginia, North Carolina,
Tennessee, Alabama, Louisiana, Texas, Arkansas, Mississippi, and
Florida (except the inhabitants of that part of the State of Virginia
lying west of the Allegheny Mountains, and of such other parts of
that State, and the other States hereinbefore named, as may maintain
a loyal adhesion to the Union and the Constitution, or may be time to
time occupied and controlled by forces of the United States engaged
in the dispersion of said insurgents), are in a state of insurrection
against the United States, and that all commercial intercourse
between the same and the inhabitants thereof, with the exceptions
aforesaid, and the citizens of other States and other parts of the
United States, is unlawful, and will remain unlawful until such
insurrection shall cease or has been suppressed; that all goods and
chattels, wares and merchandise, coming from any of said States, with
the exceptions aforesaid, into other parts of the United States,
without the special license and permission of the President, through
the Secretary of the Treasury, or proceeding to any of said States,
with the exceptions aforesaid, by land or water, together with the
vessel or vehicle conveying the same, or conveying persons to or from
said States, with said exceptions, will be forfeited to the United
States; and that from and after fifteen days from the issuing of this
proclamation all ships and vessels belonging in whole or in part to
any citizen or inhabitant of any of said States, with said
exceptions, found at sea, or in any port of the United States, will
be forfeited to the United States; and I hereby enjoin upon all
district attorneys, marshals, and officers of the revenue and of the
military and naval forces of the United States to be vigilant in the
execution of said act, and in the enforcement of the penalties and
forfeitures imposed or declared by it; leaving any party who may
think himself aggrieved thereby to his application to the Secretary
of the Treasury for the remission of any penalty or forfeiture, which
the said Secretary is authorized by law to grant if, in his judgment,
the special circumstances of any case shall require such remission.

In witness whereof, I have hereunto set my hand,...................

By the President:
WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of Sate.


EXECUTIVE MANSION, August 17, 1861


MY DEAR SIR:--Unless there be reason to the contrary, not known to
me, make out a commission for Simon B. Buckner, of Kentucky, as a
brigadier-general of volunteers. It is to be put into the hands of
General Anderson, and delivered to General Buckner or not, at the
discretion of General Anderson. Of course it is to remain a secret
unless and until the commission is delivered.

Yours truly,

Same day made.




Governor of the State of Kentucky.

SIR:--Your letter of the 19th instant, in which you urge the "removal
from the limits of Kentucky of the military force now organized and
in camp within that State," is received.

I may not possess full and precisely accurate knowledge upon this
subject; but I believe it is true that there is a military force in
camp within Kentucky, acting by authority of the United States, which
force is not very large, and is not now being augmented.

I also believe that some arms have been furnished to this force by
the United States.

I also believe this force consists exclusively of Kentuckians, having
their camp in the immediate vicinity of their own homes, and not
assailing or menacing any of the good people of Kentucky.

In all I have done in the premises I have acted upon the urgent
solicitation of many Kentuckians, and in accordance with what I
believed, and still believe, to be the wish of a majority of all the
Union-loving people of Kentucky.

While I have conversed on this subject with many eminent men of
Kentucky, including a large majority of her members of Congress, I do
not remember that any one of them, or any other person, except your
Excellency and the bearers of your Excellency's letter, has urged me
to remove the military force from Kentucky or to disband it. One
other very worthy citizen of Kentucky did solicit me to have the
augmenting of the force suspended for a time.

Taking all the means within my reach to form a judgment, I do not
believe it is the popular wish of Kentucky that this force shall be
removed beyond her limits; and, with this impression, I must
respectfully decline to so remove it.

I most cordially sympathize with your Excellency in the wish to
preserve the peace of my own native State, Kentucky. It is with
regret I search, and cannot find, in your not very short letter, any
declaration or intimation that you entertain any desire for the
preservation of the Federal Union.

Your obedient servant,





MY DEAR SIR:--Two points in your proclamation of August 30 give me
some anxiety.

First. Should you shoot a man, according to the proclamation, the
Confederates would very certainly shoot our best men in their hands
in retaliation; and so, man for man, indefinitely. It is, therefore,
my order that you allow no man to be shot under the proclamation
without first having my approbation or consent.

Second. I think there is great danger that the closing paragraph, in
relation to the confiscation of property and the liberating slaves of
traitorous owners, will alarm our Southern Union friends and turn
them against us; perhaps ruin our rather fair prospect for Kentucky.
Allow me, therefore, to ask that you will, as of your own motion,
modify that paragraph so as to conform to the first and fourth
sections of the act of Congress entitled "An act to confiscate
property used for insurrectionary purposes," approved August 6, 1861,
and a copy of which act I herewith send you.

This letter is written in a spirit of caution, and not of censure. I
send it by special messenger, in order that it may certainly and
speedily reach you.

Yours very truly,



WAR DEPARTMENT, September 11, 1861.

General Butler proposes raising in New England six regiments, to be
recruited and commanded by himself, and to go on special service.

I shall be glad if you, as governor of ______, will answer by
telegraph if you consent.





SIR:-Yours of the 8th, in answer to mine of the 2d instant, is just
received. Assuming that you, upon the ground, could better judge of
the necessities of your position than I could at this distance, on
seeing your proclamation of August 30 I perceived no general objection
to it. The particular clause, however, in relation to the
confiscation of property and the liberation of slaves appeared to me
to be objectionable in its nonconformity to the act of Congress
passed the 6th of last August upon the same subjects; and hence I
wrote you, expressing my wish that that clause should be modified
accordingly. Your answer, just received, expresses the preference on
your part that I should make an open order for the modification,
which I very cheerfully do. It is therefore ordered that the said
clause of said proclamation be so modified, held, and construed as to
conform to, and not to transcend, the provisions on the same subject
contained in the act of Congress entitled "An act to confiscate
property used for insurrectionary purposes," approved August 6, 1861,
and that said act be published at length with this order.

Your obedient servant,



September 12, 1861


MY DEAR MADAM:--Your two notes of to-day are before me. I answered
the letter you bore me from General Fremont on yesterday, and not
hearing from you during the day, I sent the answer to him by mail.
It is not exactly correct, as you say you were told by the elder Mr.
Blair, to say that I sent Postmaster-General Blair to St. Louis to
examine into that department and report. Postmaster-General Blair
did go, with my approbation, to see and converse with General Fremont
as a friend. I do not feel authorized to furnish you with copies of
letters in my possession without the consent of the writers. No
impression has been made on my mind against the honor or integrity of
General Fremont, and I now enter my protest against being understood
as acting in any hostility toward him.

Your obedient servant,





DEAR SIR:-Yours of this day in relation to the late proclamation of
General Fremont is received yesterday I addressed a letter to him, by
mail, on the same subject, and which is to be made public when he
receives it. I herewith send you a copy of that letter, which
perhaps shows my position as distinctly as any new one I could write.
I will thank you not to make it public until General Fremont shall
have had time to receive the original.

Your obedient servant,


WASHINGTON, D.C., September 16, 1861.

DEAR SIR:--Since conversing with you I have concluded to request you
to frame an order for recruiting North Carolinians at Fort Hatteras.
I suggest it to be so framed as for us to accept a smaller force--
even a company--if we cannot get a regiment or more. What is
necessary to now say about officers you will judge. Governor Seward
says he has a nephew (Clarence A. Seward, I believe) who would be
willing to go and play colonel and assist in raising the force.
Still it is to be considered whether the North Carolinians will not
prefer officers of their own. I should expect they would.

Yours very truly,



EXECUTIVE MANSION, September 18, 1861

MY DEAR SIR:--To guard against misunderstanding, I think fit to say
that the joint expedition of the army and navy agreed upon some time
since, and in which General T. W. Sherman was and is to bear a
conspicuous part, is in no wise to be abandoned, but must be ready to
move by the 1st of, or very early in, October. Let all preparations
go forward accordingly.

Yours truly,




Governor Morton telegraphs as follows: "Colonel Lane, just arrived by
special train, represents Owensborough, forty miles above Evansville,
in possession of secessionists. Green River is navigable.
Owensborough must be seized. We want a gunboat sent up from Paducah
for that purpose." Send up the gunboat if, in your discretion, you
think it right. Perhaps you had better order those in charge of the
Ohio River to guard it vigilantly at all points.



(Private and Confidential)

SEPTEMBER 22, 1861


MY DEAR SIR:--Yours of the 17th is just received; and coming from you,
I confess it astonishes me. That you should object to my adhering to
a law which you had assisted in making and presenting to me less than
a month before is odd enough. But this is a very small part.
General Fremont's proclamation as to confiscation of property and the
liberation of slaves is purely political and not within the range of
military law or necessity. If a commanding general finds a necessity
to seize the farm of a private owner for a pasture, an encampment, or
a fortification, he has the right to do so, and to so hold it as long
as the necessity lasts; and this is within military law, because
within military necessity. But to say the farm shall no longer
belong to the owner, or his heirs forever, and this as well when the
farm is not needed for military purposes as when it is, is purely
political, without the savor of military law about it. And the same
is true of slaves. If the general needs them, he can seize them and
use them; but when the need is past, it is not for him to fix their
permanent future condition. That must be settled according to laws
made by law-makers, and not by military proclamations. The
proclamation in the point in question is simply "dictatorship." It
assumes that the general may do anything he pleases confiscate the
lands and free the slaves of loyal people, as well as of disloyal
ones. And going the whole figure, I have no doubt, would be more
popular with some thoughtless people than that which has been done,
But I cannot assume this reckless position, nor allow others to
assume it on my responsibility.

You speak of it as being the only means of saving the government. On
the contrary, it is itself the surrender of the government. Can it
be pretended that it is any longer the Government of the United
States--any government of constitution and laws wherein a general or
a president may make permanent rules of property by proclamation? I
do not say Congress might not with propriety pass a law on the point,
just such as General Fremont proclaimed.

I do not say I might not, as a member of Congress, vote for it. What
I object to is, that I, as President, shall expressly or impliedly
seize and exercise the permanent legislative functions of the

So much as to principle. Now as to policy. No doubt the thing was
popular in some quarters, and would have been more so if it had been
a general declaration of emancipation. The Kentucky Legislature
would not budge till that proclamation was modified; and General
Anderson telegraphed me that on the news of General Fremont having
actually issued deeds of manumission, a whole company of our
volunteers threw down their arms and disbanded. I was so assured as
to think it probable that the very arms we had furnished Kentucky
would be turned against us. I think to lose Kentucky is nearly the
same as to lose the whole game. Kentucky gone, we cannot hold
Missouri, nor, as I think, Maryland. These all against us, and the
job on our hands is too large for us. We would as well consent to
separation at once, including the surrender of this Capital. On the
contrary, if you will give up your restlessness for new positions,
and back me manfully on the grounds upon which you and other kind
friends gave me the election and have approved in my public
documents, we shall go through triumphantly. You must not understand
I took my course on the proclamation because of Kentucky. I took the
same ground in a private letter to General Fremont before I heard
from Kentucky.

You think I am inconsistent because I did not also forbid General
Fremont to shoot men under the proclamation. I understand that part
to be within military law, but I also think, and so privately wrote
General Fremont, that it is impolitic in this, that our adversaries
have the power, and will certainly exercise it, to shoot as many of
our men as we shoot of theirs. I did not say this in the public
letter, because it is a subject I prefer not to discuss in the
hearing of our enemies.

There has been no thought of removing General Fremont on any ground
connected with his proclamation, and if there has been any wish for
his removal on any ground, our mutual friend Sam. Glover can
probably tell you what it was. I hope no real necessity for it
exists on any ground.

Your friend, as ever,


[OCTOBER 1?] 1861

On or about the 5th of October (the exact date to be determined
hereafter) I wish a movement made to seize and hold a point on the
railroad connecting Virginia and Tennessee near the mountain-pass
called Cumberland Gap. That point is now guarded against us by
Zollicoffer, with 6000 or 8000 rebels at Barboursville Ky.,--say
twenty-five miles from the Gap, toward Lexington. We have a force
of 5000 or 6000 under General Thomas, at Camp Dick Robinson, about
twenty-five miles from Lexington and seventy-five from Zollicoffer's
camp, On the road between the two. There is not a railroad anywhere
between Lexington and the point to be seized, and along the whole
length of which the Union sentiment among the people largely
predominates. We have military possession of the railroad from
Cincinnati to Lexington, and from Louisville to Lexington, and some
home guards, under General Crittenden, are on the latter line. We
have possession of the railroad from Louisville to Nashville, Tenn.,
so far as Muldraugh's Hill, about forty miles, and the rebels have
possession of that road all south of there. At the Hill we have a
force of 8000, under General Sherman, and about an equal force of
rebels is a very short distance south, under General Buckner.

We have a large force at Paducah, and a smaller at Port Holt, both on
the Kentucky side, with some at Bird's Point, Cairo, Mound City,
Evansville, and New Albany, all on the other side, and all which,
with the gunboats on the river, are perhaps sufficient to guard the
Ohio from Louisville to its mouth.

About supplies of troops, my general idea is that all from Wisconsin,
Minnesota, Iowa, Illinois, Missouri, and Kansas, not now elsewhere,
be left to Fremont. All from Indiana and Michigan, not now
elsewhere, be sent to Anderson at Louisville. All from Ohio needed
in western Virginia be sent there, and any remainder be sent to
Mitchell at Cincinnati, for Anderson. All east of the mountains be
appropriated to McClellan and to the coast.

As to movements, my idea is that the one for the coast and that on
Cumberland Gap be simultaneous, and that in the meantime preparation,
vigilant watching, and the defensive only be acted upon; this,
however, not to apply to Fremont's operations in northern and middle
Missouri. That before these movements Thomas and Sherman shall
respectively watch but not attack Zollicoffer and Buckner. That when
the coast and Gap movements shall be ready Sherman is merely to stand
fast, while all at Cincinnati and all at Louisville, with all on the
line, concentrate rapidly at Lexington, and thence to Thomas's camp,
joining him, and the whole thence upon the Gap. It is for the
military men to decide whether they can find a pass through the
mountains at or near the Gap which cannot be defended by the enemy
with a greatly inferior force, and what is to be done in regard to

The coast and Gap movements made, Generals McClellan and Fremont, in
their respective departments, will avail themselves of any advantages
the diversions may present.

[He was entirely unable to get this started, Sherman would have taken
an active part if given him, the others were too busy getting lines
of communication guarded--and discovering many "critical" supply
items that had not been sent them. Also the commanding general did
not like it. D.W.]

EXECUTIVE MANSION, October 4, 1861


DEAR SIR:--Please see Mr. Walker, well vouched as a Union man and
son-in-law of Governor Morehead, and pleading for his release. I
understand the Kentucky arrests were not made by special direction
from here, and I am willing if you are that any of the parties may be
released when James Guthrie and James Speed think they should be.

Yours truly,


WASHINGTON, October 11, 1861.

GREAT AND GOOD FRIEND:--I have received from Mr. Thayer, Consul-
General of the United States at Alexandria, a full account of the
liberal, enlightened, and energetic proceedings which, on his
complaint, you have adopted in bringing to speedy and condign
punishment the parties, subjects of your Highness in Upper Egypt, who
were concerned in an act of criminal persecution against Faris, an
agent of certain Christian missionaries in Upper Egypt. I pray your
Highness to be assured that these proceedings, at once so prompt and
so just, will be regarded as a new and unmistakable proof equally of
your Highness's friendship for the United States and of the firmness,
integrity and wisdom, with which the government of your Highness is
conducted. Wishing you great prosperity and success, I am your


Viceroy of Egypt and its Dependencies, etc.

By the President:
WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.


October 14 1861


The military line of the United States for the suppression of the
insurrection may be extended so far as Bangor, in Maine. You and any
officer acting under your authority are hereby authorized to suspend
the writ of habeas corpus in any place between that place and the
city of Washington.


By the President:
WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.


EXECUTIVE MANSION, October 14, 1861


DEAR SIR:--How is this? I supposed I was appointing for register of
wills a citizen of this District. Now the commission comes to me
"Moses Kelly, of New Hampshire." I do not like this.

Yours truly,



EXECUTIVE MANSION, October 17, 1861


MY DEAR SIR:--The lady bearer of this says she has two sons who want
to work. Set them at it if possible. Wanting to work is so rare a
want that it should be encouraged.

Yours truly,



WASHINGTON, October 18, 1861.


Your despatch of yesterday received and shown to General McClellan.
I have promised him not to direct his army here without his consent.
I do not think I shall come to Annapolis.



WASHINGTON, October 24, 1861


MY DEAR SIR:--Herewith is a document--half letter, half order--which,
wishing you to see, but not to make public, I send unsealed. Please
read it and then inclose it to the officer who may be in command of
the Department of the West at the time it reaches him. I cannot now
know whether Fremont or Hunter will then be in command.

Yours truly,

WASHINGTON, October 24, 1861


DEAR SIR:--On receipt of this, with the accompanying inclosures, you
will take safe, certain, and suitable measures to have the inclosure
addressed to Major-General Fremont delivered to him with all
reasonable despatch, subject to these conditions only: that if, when
General Fremont shall be reached by the messenger--yourself or any
one sent by you--he shall then have, in personal command, fought and
won a battle, or shall then be actually in a battle, or shall then be
in the immediate presence of the enemy in expectation of a battle, it
is not to be delivered, but held for further orders. After, and not
till after, the delivery to General Fremont, let the inclosure
addressed to General Hunter be delivered to him.

Your obedient servant,


(General Orders No. 18.)

WASHINGTON, October 24, 1861

Major-General Fremont, of the United States Army, the present
commander of the Western Department of the same, will, on the receipt
of this order, call Major-General Hunter, of the United States
Volunteers, to relieve him temporarily in that command, when he
(Major-General Fremont) will report to general headquarters by letter
for further orders.

By command: E. D. TOWNSEND, Assistant Adjutant-General.

WASHINGTON, October 24, 1861


SIR:--The command of the Department of the West having devolved upon
you, I propose to offer you a few suggestions. Knowing how hazardous
it is to bind down a distant commander in the field to specific lines
and operations, as so much always depends on a knowledge of
localities and passing events, it is intended, therefore, to leave a
considerable margin for the exercise of your judgment and discretion.

The main rebel army (Price's) west of the Mississippi is believed to
have passed Dade County in full retreat upon northwestern Arkansas,
leaving Missouri almost freed from the enemy, excepting in the
southeast of the State. Assuming this basis of fact, it seems
desirable, as you are not likely to overtake Price, and are in danger
of making too long a line from your own base of supplies and
reinforcements, that you should give up the pursuit, halt your main
army, divide it into two corps of observation, one occupying Sedalia
and the other Rolla, the present termini of railroads; then recruit
the condition of both corps by re-establishing and improving their
discipline and instructions, perfecting their clothing and
equipments, and providing less uncomfortable quarters. Of course,
both railroads must be guarded and kept open, judiciously employing
just so much force as is necessary for this. From these two points,
Sedalia and Rolla, and especially in judicious cooperation with Lane
on the Kansas border, it would be so easy to concentrate and repel
any army of the enemy returning on Missouri from the southwest, that
it is not probable any such attempt will be made before or during the
approaching cold weather. Before spring the people of Missouri will
probably be in no favorable mood to renew for next year the troubles
which have so much afflicted and impoverished them during this. If
you adopt this line of policy, and if, as I anticipate, you will see
no enemy in great force approaching, you will have a surplus of force
which you can withdraw from these points and direct to others as may
be needed, the railroads furnishing ready means of reinforcing these
main points if occasion requires. Doubtless local uprisings will for
a time continue to occur, but these can be met by detachments and
local forces of our own, and will ere long tire out of themselves.

While, as stated in the beginning of the letter, a large discretion
must be and is left with yourself, I feel sure that an indefinite
pursuit of Price or an attempt by this long and circuitous route to
reach Memphis will be exhaustive beyond endurance, and will end in
the loss of the whole force engaged in it.

Your obedient servant,


(General Orders, No.94.)


WASHINGTON, November 1, 1861

The following order from the President of the United States,
announcing the retirement from active command of the honored veteran
Lieutenant general Winfield Scott, will be read by the army with
profound regret:


November 1, 1861

On the 1st day of November, A.D. 1861, upon his own application to
the President of the United States, Brevet Lieutenant-General
Winfield Scott is ordered to be placed, and hereby is placed, upon
the list of retired officers of the army of the United States,
without reduction in his current pay, subsistence, or allowances.

The American people will hear with sadness and deep emotion that
General Scott has withdrawn from the active control of the army,
while the President and a unanimous Cabinet express their own and the
nation's sympathy in his personal affliction and their profound sense
of the important public services rendered by him to his country
during his long and brilliant career, among which will ever be
gratefully distinguished his faithful devotion to the Constitution,
the Union, and the flag when assailed by parricidal rebellion.


The President is pleased to direct that Major general George B.
McClellan assume the command of the army of the United States. The
headquarters of the army will be established in the city of
Washington. All communications intended for the commanding general
will hereafter be addressed direct to the adjutant-general. The
duplicate returns, orders, and other papers heretofore sent to the
assistant adjutant-general, headquarters of the army, will be

By order of the Secretary of War:
L. THOMAS, Adjutant General.



November 5, 1861.

The Governor of the State of Missouri, acting under the direction of
the convention of that State, proposes to the Government of the
United States that he will raise a military force to serve within the
State as State militia during the war there, to cooperate with the
troops in the service of the United States in repelling the invasion
of the State and suppressing rebellion therein; the said State
militia to be embodied and to be held in the camp and in the field,
drilled, disciplined, and governed according to the Army Regulations
and subject to the Articles of War; the said State militia not to be
ordered out of the State except for the immediate defense of the
State of Missouri, but to co-operate with the troops in the service
of the United States in military operations within the State or
necessary to its defense, and when officers of the State militia act
with officers in the service of the United States of the same grade
the officers of the United States service shall command the combined
force; the State militia to be armed, equipped, clothed, subsisted,
transported, and paid by the United States during such time as they
shall be actually engaged as an embodied military force in service in
accordance with regulations of the United States Army or general
orders as issued from time to time.

In order that the Treasury of the United States may not be burdened
with the pay of unnecessary officers, the governor proposes that,
although the State law requires him to appoint upon the general staff
an adjutant-general, a commissary-general, an inspector-general, a
quartermaster-general, a paymaster-general, and a surgeon-general,
each with the rank of colonel of cavalry, yet he proposes that the
Government of the United States pay only the adjutant-general, the
quartermaster-general, and inspector-general, their services being
necessary in the relations which would exist between the State
militia and the United States. The governor further proposes that
while he is allowed by the State law to appoint aides-de-camp to the
governor at his discretion, with the rank of colonel, three only
shall be reported to the United States for payment. He also proposes
that the State militia shall be commanded by a single major-general
and by such number of brigadier-generals as shall allow one for a
brigade of not less than four regiments, and that no greater number
of staff officers shall be appointed for regimental, brigade, and
division duties than as provided for in the act of Congress of the
22d July, 1861; and that, whatever be the rank of such officers as
fixed by the law of the State, the compensation that they shall
receive from the United States shall only be that which belongs to
the rank given by said act of Congress to officers in the United
States service performing the same duties.

The field officers of a regiment in the State militia are one
colonel, one lieutenant-colonel, and one major, and the company
officers are a captain, a first lieutenant, and a second lieutenant.
The governor proposes that, as the money to be disbursed is the money
of the United States, such staff officers in the service of the
United States as may be necessary to act as disbursing officers for
the State militia shall be assigned by the War Department for that
duty; or, if such cannot be spared from their present duty, he will
appoint such persons disbursing officers for the State militia as the
President of the United States may designate. Such regulations as
may be required, in the judgment of the President, to insure
regularity of returns and to protect the United States from any
fraudulent practices shall be observed and obeyed by all in office in
the State militia.

The above propositions are accepted on the part of the United States,
and the Secretary of War is directed to make the necessary orders
upon the Ordnance, Quartermaster's, Commissary, Pay, and Medical
departments to carry this agreement into effect. He will cause the
necessary staff officers in the United States service to be detailed
for duty in connection with the Missouri State militia, and will
order them to make the necessary provision in their respective
offices for fulfilling this agreement. All requisitions upon the
different officers of the United States under this agreement to be
made in substance in the same mode for the Missouri State militia as
similar requisitions are made for troops in the service of the United
States; and the Secretary of War will cause any additional
regulations that may be necessary to insure regularity and economy in
carrying this agreement into effect to be adopted and communicated to
the Governor of Missouri for the government of the Missouri State


November 6, 1861.

This plan approved, with the modification that the governor
stipulates that when he commissions a major-general of militia it
shall be the same person at the time in command of the United States
Department of the West; and in case the United States shall change
such commander of the department, he (the governor) will revoke the
State commission given to the person relieved and give one to the
person substituted to the United States command of said department.



November 8, 1861.

SIR:--I receive with great pleasure a Minister from Sweden. That
pleasure is enhanced by the information which preceded your arrival
here, that his Majesty, your sovereign, had selected you to fill the
mission upon the grounds of your derivation from an ancestral stock
identified with the most glorious era of your country's noble
history, and your own eminent social and political standing in
Sweden. This country, sir, maintains, and means to maintain, the
rights of human nature, and the capacity of men for self-government.
The history of Sweden proves that this is the faith of the people of
Sweden, and we know that it is the faith and practice of their
respected sovereign. Rest assured, therefore, that we shall be found
always just and paternal in our transactions with your government,
and that nothing will be omitted on my part to make your residence in
this capital agreeable to yourself and satisfactory to your


St. Louis, November 20, 1861.
(Received Nov. 20th.)


For the President of the United States.

No written authority is found here to declare and enforce martial law
in this department. Please send me such written authority and
telegraph me that it has been sent by mail.


November 21, 1861.

If General McClellan and General Halleck deem it necessary to declare
and maintain martial law in Saint Louis, the same is hereby




WASHINGTON, November 21, 1861

DEAR GOVERNOR:--I have thought over the interview which Mr. Gilmore
has had with Mr. Greeley, and the proposal that Greeley has made to
Gilmore, namely, that he [Gilmore] shall communicate to him [Greeley]
all that he learns from you of the inner workings of the
administration, in return for his [Greeley's] giving such aid as he
can to the new magazine, and allowing you [Walker] from time to time
the use of his [Greeley's] columns when it is desirable to feel of,
or forestall, public opinion on important subjects. The arrangement
meets my unqualified approval, and I shall further it to the extent
of my ability, by opening to you--as I do now--fully the policy of
the Government,--its present views and future intentions when formed,
giving you permission to communicate them to Gilmore for Greeley; and
in case you go to Europe I will give these things direct to Gilmore.
But all this must be on the express and explicit understanding that
the fact of these communications coming from me shall be absolutely
confidential,--not to be disclosed by Greeley to his nearest friend,
or any of his subordinates. He will be, in effect, my mouthpiece,
but I must not be known to be the speaker.

I need not tell you that I have the highest confidence in Mr.
Greeley. He is a great power. Having him firmly behind me will be
as helpful to me as an army of one hundred thousand men.

This was to be most severely regretted, when Greeley became a traitor
to the cause, editorialized for compromise and separation--and
promoted McClellan as Democratic candidate for the Presidency.

That he has ever kicked the traces has been owing to his not being
fully informed. Tell Gilmore to say to him that, if he ever objects
to my policy, I shall be glad to have him state to me his views
frankly and fully. I shall adopt his if I can. If I cannot, I will
at least tell him why. He and I should stand together, and let no
minor differences come between us; for we both seek one end, which is
the saving of our country. Now, Governor, this is a longer letter
than I have written in a month,--longer than I would have written for
any other man than Horace Greeley.

Your friend, truly,


P. S.--The sooner Gilmore sees Greeley the better, as you may before
long think it wise to ventilate our policy on the Trent affair.


DECEMBER 2, 1861.

Commanding in the Department of Missouri.

GENERAL:--As an insurrection exists in the United States, and is in
arms in the State of Missouri, you are hereby authorized and
empowered to suspend the writ of habeas corpus within the limits of
the military division under your command, and to exercise martial law
as you find it necessary in your discretion to secure the public
safety and the authority of the United States.

In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and caused the
seal of the United States to be affixed at Washington, this second
day of December, A.D. 1861.


By the President:
WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

WASHINGTON, December 3, 1861

midst of unprecedented political troubles we have cause of great
gratitude to God for unusual good health and most abundant harvests.

You will not be surprised to learn that in the peculiar exigencies of
the times our intercourse with foreign nations has been attended with
profound solicitude, chiefly turning upon our own domestic affairs.

A disloyal portion of the American people have during the whole year
been engaged in an attempt to divide and destroy the Union. A nation
which endures factious domestic division is exposed to disrespect
abroad, and one party, if not both, is sure sooner or later to invoke
foreign intervention.

Nations thus tempted to interfere are not always able to resist the
counsels of seeming expediency and ungenerous ambition, although
measures adopted under such influences seldom fail to be unfortunate
and injurious to those adopting them.

The disloyal citizens of the United States who have offered the ruin
of our country in return for the aid and comfort which they have
invoked abroad have received less patronage and encouragement than
they probably expected. If it were just to suppose, as the
insurgents have seemed to assume, that foreign nations in this case,
discarding all moral, social, and treaty obligations, would act
solely and selfishly for the most speedy restoration of commerce,
including especially the acquisition of cotton, those nations appear
as yet not to have seen their way to their object more directly or
clearly through the destruction than through the preservation of the
Union. If we could dare to believe that foreign nations are actuated
by no higher principle than this, I am quite sure a sound argument
could be made to show them that they can reach their aim more readily
and easily by aiding to crush this rebellion than by giving
encouragement to it.

The principal lever relied on by the insurgents for exciting foreign
nations to hostility against us, as already intimated, is the
embarrassment of commerce. Those nations, however, not improbably
saw from the first that it was the Union which made as well our
foreign as our domestic commerce. They can scarcely have failed to
perceive that the effort for disunion produces the existing
difficulty, and that one strong nation promises more durable peace
and a more extensive, valuable, and reliable commerce than can the
same nation broken into hostile fragments.

It is not my purpose to review our discussions with foreign states,
because, whatever might be their wishes or dispositions, the
integrity of our country and the stability of our government mainly
depend not upon them, but on the loyalty, virtue, patriotism, and
intelligence of the American people. The correspondence itself, with
the usual reservations, is herewith submitted.


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