Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Thomas Wentworth Higginson to Ralph Waldo Emerson, 1855

I am authorized by the Committee of the AntiSlavery Society, to ask you to name some time for the actual delivery of your address. . . .

I believe that our Treasurer had no opportunity of paying you the twenty dollars proposed. In view of the circumstances (as we rely greatly on the sale of single tickets, in our course), the Committee seem to think themselves authorized in offering you the full price for your first lecture (or attempt at it) and ten dollars more should you come again, — making thirty dollars in all.

SOURCE: Mary Potter Thacher Higginson, Editor, Letters and Journals of Thomas Wentworth Higginson, 1846-1906, p. 59

George L. Stearns to John Brown, February 12, 1858

dear Sir:

Your last letter is at hand. I have seen Mr. Sanborn and we have agreed to write to you to come to Boston and meet us here. If it is not convenient for you to meet the expense of the journey we will repay it to you here, or send the money as you may direct.

Truly your friend,
George L. Stearns.

SOURCE: Frank Preston Stearns, The Life and Public Services of George Luther Stearns, p. 163

Diary of Julia Ward Howe: April 27, 1865

. . . heard of Wilkes Booth's death — shot on refusing to give himself up — the best thing that could have happened to himself and his family.

SOURCE: Laura E. Richards & Maud Howe Elliott, Julia Ward Howe, 1819-1910, Large-Paper Edition, Volume 1, p. 221

Diary of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, September 12, 1860

The day has been blackened to me by the passage of the Fugitive Slave Bill in the House, Eliot of Boston voting for it. If we should read in Dino Compagni that in the tenth century a citizen of Florence had given such a vote, we should see what an action he had done. But this the people of Boston cannot see in themselves; they will uphold it.

SOURCE: Laura E. Richards, Editor, Letters and Journals of Samuel Gridley Howe, Volume 2, p. 265

Diary of Theodore Parker, November 6, 1851

Saw Dr. Howe this afternoon: he looks better, in fine health and spirits. I went with him to the Faneuil Hall meeting of Free-soilers. Sumner was on his legs — a fine speaker, a very sincere and good fellow, only he wants courage. Howe is braver and richer in ideas, but not so well trained for literary work.

SOURCE: Laura E. Richards, Editor, Letters and Journals of Samuel Gridley Howe, Volume 2, p. 266-7

George Mason Graham to William T. Sherman, September 7, 1859

Willard's Hotel, Washington, Sept. 7, 1859.

Dear SIR: On arriving here night before last I had the pleasure to receive from Mr. Richard Smith your two favors of the 15th and 20th of August, and Major Buell, with whom I have not been able to meet until this morning at breakfast, has shown me yours to him of the 4th inst. which he was in the act of opening when I joined him, and from which he has allowed me to take a memorandum of the dates of your proposed movements. The information contained in your letter to Buell has been of considerable relief to me, for whilst it would be very gratifying to me to meet with you I did not see any good commensurate with the expense, time, risk, and trouble to yourself, to result from your coming all the way here merely to confer with me when it was not in my power to specify any particular day when I would be in the city, as the business which brings me here lies down in Virginia, whither I go tomorrow morning, if the violent cold under which I am now suffering shall permit, and the consummation of it is contingent on the action of a half dozen others than myself.

I had desired very much, if it suited your convenience, that you could visit and see into the interior life of the school at Lexington, Virginia, where everything would be shown to you with the most cordial frankness by Col. Smith, who has taken the warmest and most earnest interest in our effort, and who writes to me of you, sir, in very high terms of congratulatory appreciation, and where one of your classmates, Major Gilham, is a member of the Academic Board.

In the event that this will not be practicable to you, as I infer from the programme laid down in your note to Major Buell it will not be, I shall write to Col. Smith asking him to give us all necessary information of details not contained in the “Rules and Regulations” the preparation of the code of which for our school is confined to the joint action of “the faculty” and “A Committee consisting of Messrs. Manning, Graham, and Whittington.” I would rather have had the Board adopt for the present the code of the Virginia school, because under the Governor's resolution, about which he did not confer with me beforehand, it cannot well be done until on or about the 1st of January, when it ought to be done in advance. I do not see therefore that we can do otherwise than adopt, at first, the code of that school. I have no apprehension but that whatever you, Mr. Manning and myself may agree upon, will be acceptable to all the rest.

In regard to “furnishing” the building there will not be much trouble. My idea will be for each cadet to furnish his own requisites in the way of room furniture, as at West Point. There will then be nothing to furnish but the class-rooms, the kitchen and mess hall as I believe I mentioned to you before, the statement in the Governor's advertisement that “furnished apartments would be provided in the building for the professors,” was an error of our not very clear-headed secretary. The intention of the Board was simply to apprize all interested that there were no separate dwellings for the professors. . .

I met with Mr. F. W. Smith1 in Richmond and travelled with him to this place. He is about sailing for Europe to be back the 1st of December. All my anticipations of him fully realized. I cannot close without mentioning that in a visit to the convent in Georgetown yesterday my sister (Mary Bernard) poured out her joy on learning (to do which she enquired with great eagerness) that the superintendent of our school was the husband of that “one of all the girls who have passed through our hands here that I believed I loved best and was the most deeply interested in.”2

In regard to “authority and control,” although it is not yet exactly so, I hope the next session of the legislature will place our school on precisely the same footing as the Virginia school, making the superintendent the commanding officer of the corps of cadets, giving to him and the other members of the Academic Board, rank in the State's military organization.

1 The newly elected commandant of cadets and professor of chemistry. — Ed.

2 Mrs. Sherman was educated in a Georgetown, D.C., convent in which General Graham's sister was a teacher and later Mother Superior. — Ed.

SOURCE: Walter L. Fleming, Editor, General W.T. Sherman as College President, p. 34-7

Conversation between John Brown and John Avis, his Jailer: about October 22, 1859

Jailer. I see in the papers that yon told Governor Wise you had promises of aid from Virginia, Tennessee, and the Carolina. Is that true, or did you make it up to “rile’' the old Governor?

Brown. No; I did not tell Wise that.

Jailer. What did you tell him that could have made that impression on his mind?

Brown. Wise said something about fanaticism, and intimated that no man in full possession of his senses could have expected to overcome a State with such a handful of men as I had, backed only by struggling negroes: and I replied that I bad promises of ample assistance, and would have received it too if I could only have put the ball in motion. He then asked suddenly and in a harsh voice, as you've seen lawyers snap up a witness: “Assistance! from what State, sir?” I was not thrown off my guard, and replied: “From more than you'd believe if I should name them all; but I expected more from Virginia, Tennessee, and the Carolinas than from any others.

Jailer. You “expected” You did not say it was promised from the States named?

Brown. No; I knew, of course, that the negroes would rally to my standard. If I had only got the thing fairly started, you Virginians would have seen sights that would have opened your eyes; and I tell you if I was free this moment, and had five hundred negroes around me, I would put these irons on Wise himself before Saturday night.

Jailer. Then it was true about aid being promised? What States promised it?

Brown (with a laugh). Well, you are about as smart a man as Wise, and I’ll give you the same answer I gave him.

SOURCES: Franklin B. Sanborn, The Life and Letters of John Brown, p. 571-2 & 622 where John Avis was named as Brown’s jailer.

Monday, April 23, 2018

Extract of Speech of Governor Henry A. Wise, October 21, 1859

And they are themselves mistaken who take Brown to be a madman. He is a bundle of the best nerves I ever saw: cut and thrust and bleeding, and in bonds. He is a man of clear head, of courage, fortitude, and simple ingenuousness. He is cool, collected, and indomitable, and it is but just to him to say that he was humane to his prisoners as attested to me by Colonel Washington and Mr. Mills, and he inspired me with great trust in his integrity as a man of truth. He is a fanatic, vain and garrulous, but firm, truthful, and intelligent. His men, too, who survive, except the free negroes with him, are like him. He professes to be a Christian in communion with the Congregational Church of the North, and openly preaches his purpose of universal emancipation; and the negroes themselves were to be the agents, by means of arms, led on by white commanders.

When Colonel Washington was taken, his watch, and plate, and jewels, and money were demanded, to create what they call a ‘safety fund,’ to compensate the liberators for the trouble and expense of taking away his slaves. This, by a law, was to be done with all slaveholders. Washington, of course; refused to deliver up anything; and it is remarkable, that the only thing of material value which they took, besides his slaves, was the sword of Frederick the Great, which was sent to General Washington. This was taken by Stevens to Brown, and the latter commanded his men with that sword in this fight against the peace and safety of Washington's native State! He promised Col. Washington to return it when he was done with it. Colonel Washington says that he was the coolest and firmest man he ever saw in defying danger and death. With one son dead by his side, and another shot through, he felt the pulse of his dying son with one hand, held his rifle with the other, and commanded his men with the utmost composure, encouraging them to be firm, and to sell their lives as dearly as they could.  Of the tree white prisoners Brown, Stevens and Coppic – it was hard to say which was most firm; and of the two negroes, it was hard to say which seemed the most cowardly and false.  The North Carolina negro offered to betray all person involved in the affair, if spared, and the Canada negro – who was I believed, one of the members of their Provisional Congress – was a crouching craven, who lied, as Brown said, for life.

SOURCES: Franklin B. Sanborn, The Life and Letters of John Brown, p. 571-2; Richard Josiah Hinton, John Brown and His Men, p. 329; The Life and Letters of Captain John Brown, p. 166-8; “Old Brown,” Orleans Independent Standard, Irasburgh, Vermont, Friday November 4, 1859; James, Redpath,The Public Life of Capt. John Brown, p. 273; “Speech of Gov. Wise at Richomnd,” The National Era, Washington, D. C., Thursday, November 3, 1859; “The Insurrection of Harper’s Ferry,” New York Daily Tribune, New York, New York, Saturday, October 22, 1859 which states the date that Wise returned to Richmond on October 21, 1859; “Local Matters,” Daily Dispatch, Richmond, Virginia, Saturday, October 22, 1859, p. 1 which verified Wise “returned to the city yesterday afternoon, from Harper’s Ferry.”

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Hiram Wilson to William Still, June 28, 1855

ST. CATHARINES, C. W., June 28th, 1855.

MR. WM. STILL: — My Dear Friend: — I am happy to announce the safe arrival of Thomas Russell with his wife and child. They have just arrived. I am much pleased with their appearance. I shall do what I can for their comfort and encouragement. They stopt at Elmira from Monday night till this morning, hoping that Lucy Bell would come up and join them at that place. They are very anxious to hear from her, as they have failed of meeting with her on the way or finding her here in advance of them. They wish to hear from you as soon as you can write, and would like to know if you have forwarded Lucy on, and if so, what route you sent her. They send their kind respects to you and your family and many thanks for your kindness to them.

They wish you to inquire after Lucy if any harm has befallen her after her leaving Philadelphia. Please write promptly in my care.

Yours truly in the love of freedom,

SOURCE: William Still, The Underground Railroad: A Record of Facts, Authentic Narratives, Letters &c., p. 263

Senator Salmon P. Chase to Edward S. Hamlin, February 9, 1855

Washington Feb 9. 1855.

Dear Hamlin, A much longer time has slipped by without my writing to you than ought; but you know what my situation is & your charity will excuse me.

The papers, which are really hearty against Slavery, are, I perceive, unanimous in urging my name for Governor, & I have assurances from whigs and democrats that if I become the Peoples Candidate there will be large support from the liberals of all sides. I appreciate these manifestations of regard very — very highly. Whatever proximate results may be they bind me by fresh ties to the Cause of Liberty & Progress. There seems now to be little opposition to my nomination except with the inconsiderable number who look with alarm or dislike upon the progress of our doctrine, unless the Kns1 shall take distinct ground against me. The opposition of the former class may be safely disregarded — that of the latter will probably divide the People's Movement if based on the ground that nobody is to be supported by the Kns unless a member of their order.

Judge Spalding was here a day or two since, and sought a conversation with me in relation to the Governorship. I was very explicit on all points:

1. That the nomination and election would doubtless gratify me as an endorsement of my course & a manifestation of confidence from the People of Ohio.

2. That I could not accept a nomination or be a candidate on any platform which did not represent my convictions. Of course, I wd. not insist on the expression of all I wished; but the actual expression must be right & in the right direction.

3. That in no case could I suffer my name to be used to divide the opponents of slavery in Ohio; but, in case the Convention should take ground on which I could not honorably act, I should regard myself as having no present work to do in Ohio.

He seemed to have been a good deal under the impression that the Whigs would not support me, because of the events of 1849, & to have inclined to the idea that it would be best to defer to this sentiment & nominate another man: but he left apparently determined to use his influence with us.

Here the members of Congress all seem willing to support me, except perhaps, Campbell. He manifests a disinclination to touch the subject at all. I think he wishes to await the decision of the Kns. It is curious that he, a Seward Whig, should be apparently the chief of the western Knownothings. But strange things are happening now a days.

The elections of the last few weeks have produced a marked effect here. Harlan, Wilson, Durkee, Seward, are all regarded as hot shot from abolition cannon. Then the action of the Supreme Court of Wisconsin has startled the politicians — & the Judges too — not a little — and now even while I am writing comes the election of Trumbull in Illinois — Anti Douglas & Anti Nebraska at all events & an election which in this [illegible] at least a triumph. Everything indicates that the Antislavery Sentiment will [go] on & on to its final triumph now. What part Ohio shall have the next few months will go far to determine.

Write me soon & tell me all you learn. It seems to me you have said enough agst the Kns, and had better hold up. Give them credit for [illegible] in Massachusetts & wait till [illegible] if ever, to renew the combat. My idea is fight nobody who does not fight us. We have enemies enough in the Slaveholders & their aiders.

I write [illegible] about the paper.

1 The Know Nothing Party

SOURCE: Diary and correspondence of Salmon P. ChaseAnnual Report of the American Historical Association for the Year 1902, Vol. 2, p. 269-70

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Simon Cameron to Captain Gustavus V. Fox, April 4, 1861

Will Mr. Fox call on me for a moment after he has rec'd his orders from Gnl Scott

Simon Cameron
April 4/61
Mr. Fox

SOURCES: Robert Means Thompson & Richard Wainwright, Editors, Publications of the Naval Historical Society, Volume 9: Confidential Correspondence of Gustavus Vasa Fox, Assistant Secretary of the Navy, 1861-1865, Volume 1, p. 21

Diary of Gideon Welles: Tuesday, January 26, 1864

Stanton tells some curious matters of Jeff Davis, derived from Davis's servant, who escaped from Richmond. The servant was a slave, born on Davis's plantation. Mrs. Davis struck him three times in the face, and took him by the hair to beat his head against the wall. At night the slave fled and after some difficulty got within our lines. He is, Stanton says, very intelligent for a slave and gives an interesting inside view of Rebel trials and suffering. It should be taken, perhaps, with some allowance.

The court of inquiry in relation to the publication of the letter of Commodore Wilkes has been brought to a close. Although not as explicit and positive as it might have been, there is, and could be, no other conclusion than his guilt. When brought before the court and advised of the testimony, which showed the letter was in the hands of the newspaper folks twenty-four hours before it reached the Department, he declined to make any statement. I do not see how a court martial can be avoided. He is insubordinate, evasive, and untruthful; reckless of others' rights, ambitious, and intensely avaricious.

SOURCE: Gideon Welles, Diary of Gideon Welles, Secretary of the Navy Under Lincoln and Johnson, Vol. 1: 1861 – March 30, 1864, p. 515

Diary of Colonel Rutherford B. Hayes: July 7, 1863 p.m.

Heard the news of Vicksburg captured. Fired one hundred guns and had a good time.

SOURCE: Charles Richard Williams, editor, Diary and Letters of Rutherford Birchard Hayes, Volume 2, p. 417

Colonel Rutherford B. Hayes to Sophia Birchard Hayes, July 8, 1863

Camp White, Charleston, West Virginia, July 8, 1863.

Dear Mother: — . . . We received the news of the capture of Vicksburg last night. I hope it will not turn out as so many reports — stock-jobbers' lies. We have thus far had encouraging success in Pennsylvania. If it is continued the Rebels will hardly repeat the experiment of invading our soil. Altogether things wear a hopeful appearance, but I do not expect an early end of the war. A great deal remains to be done, and it is gratifying that the people seem determined to be patient and firm. . .

Affectionately, your son,
Mrs. Sophia Hayes.

SOURCE: Charles Richard Williams, editor, Diary and Letters of Rutherford Birchard Hayes, Volume 2, p. 417

Diary of Colonel Rutherford B. Hayes: July 9, 1863 p.m.

Left Charleston on steamboat for upper river.

SOURCE: Charles Richard Williams, editor, Diary and Letters of Rutherford Birchard Hayes, Volume 2, p. 417

Diary of Colonel Rutherford B. Hayes: July 10, 1863

At Loup Creek all day.

SOURCE: Charles Richard Williams, editor, Diary and Letters of Rutherford Birchard Hayes, Volume 2, p. 417

Diary of Colonel Rutherford B. Hayes: July 11, 1863

Moved to foot of Cotton Hill, Fayette side.

SOURCE: Charles Richard Williams, editor, Diary and Letters of Rutherford Birchard Hayes, Volume 2, p. 417

William B. Wofford* To Howell Cobb, December 14, 1845

MillEDGEvillE [ga.], 14th Decbr., 1845.

Dear Sir, I recd. yours of the 5th inst. by due course of mail. The President's views as expressed in his Message on all subjects is well received by his friends, and in fact it has sealed the lips of his political inimies.

The bill organising a Supream Court has passed and Judge Warner has bin nominated by our friends as the democratic candidate and the Whigs are pledged to elect him.

Much good feeling exists at this place with our friends and marke what I now tel you two years hence the Democratic Party in Georgia will stand erect. I am busy ingaged in preparing materiels for the campain of 1847. I compel the Feds2 to vote on all important questions and there dishonest political course is pointed out to them all most every day in the Senate and I am certain it would gratify you to witness how they hang there heads and bear it without oping there mouths.

Fountain G. Moss is the gentleman that I wish appointed post master at Hollingsworth P. Off. in my neighbourhood the petition sent last year states the reson which makes it desirable to have Mr. Moss appointed in place of Mr. Wynn please have the business attended without fail.

I enclose you two dollars Send me the Washington Union and the balance I will pay you on site. I mean the weekley paper.

N. B. — Give my compliments to Colquitt and the balance of the delegation from Georgia excep Berrien and his people.

1 A prominent Democratic politician of northeastern Georgia, at this time a member of the Georgia legislature.

2 I. e. Whigs.

SOURCE: Ulrich Bonnell Phillips, Editor, The Annual Report of the American Historical Association for the Year 1911, Volume 2: The Correspondence of Robert Toombs, Alexander H. Stephens, and Howell Cobb, p. 69

Friday, April 20, 2018

Diary of John Beauchamp Jones: September 14, 1863

The report from Lt.-Col. Lay of the condition of affairs in North Carolina, received some days ago, was indorsed by Judge Campbell, Assistant Secretary of War, and father-in-law of Col. Lay, that the destruction of the government was imminently menaced, does not seem to have alarmed the President; on the contrary, he sends the paper back to the Secretary, Mr. Seddon, suggesting that he had better correspond with Gov. Vance on the subject, and if military force should be required, he might call in the aid of Brig.-Gen. Hoke, thus ending hopes of a conscription officer here obtaining a command.

And so with rumors from Eastern Tennessee; the President takes matters coolly, saying the “locals,” meaning home guards, or companies for local defense, should be on the alert against raiders. If large bodies of the enemy come in, Jenkins's brigade, and one from Pickett's division, might be temporarily detached to punish them.

Bragg is falling back toward Atlanta, and Burnside says, officially, that he has taken Cumberland Gap, 1200 prisoners, with 14 guns, without a fight. All of Tennessee is now held by the enemy.
There has been another fight (cavalry) at Brandy Station, and our men, for want of numbers, “fell back.” When will these things cease?

SOURCE: John Beauchamp Jones, A Rebel War Clerk's Diary at the Confederate States Capital, Volume 2p. 44

Diary of 1st Sergeant John L. Ransom: November 5, 1864

Hostages taken out Everything is bright and pleasant and I see no cause to complain, therefore won't. To-morrow is election day at the North; wish I was there to vote — which I ain't. Will here say that I am a War Democrat to the backbone. Not a very stiff one, as my backbone is weak.

SOURCE: John L. Ransom, Andersonville Diary, p. 111-2

Diary of 1st Sergeant John L. Ransom: November 6, 1864

One year ago to-day captured. Presidential election at the North between Lincoln and McClellan. Some one fastened up a box, and all requested to vote, for the fun of the thing. Old prisoners haven't life enough to go and vote; new prisoners vote for present administration. I voted for McClellan with a hurrah, and another hurrah, and still another Had this election occurred while we were at Andersonville, four-fifths would have voted for McClellan. We think ourselves shamefully treated in being left so long as prisoners of war Abe Lincoln is a good man and a good president, but he is controlled by others who rule the exchange business as well as most other things. Of course our likes and dislikes make no difference to him or any one else. Yes, one year ago to day captured. A year is a good while, even when pleasantly situated, but how much longer being imprisoned as we have been. It seems a lifetime, and I am twenty years older than a year ago. Little thought that I was to remain all this time in durance vile. Improving in health, disposition and everything else. If both breeches legs were of the same length should be supremely happy. Should make a bonfire to-night if I wasn't afraid of celebrating a defeat. Had lots of fun hurrahing for "Little Mac."

SOURCE: John L. Ransom, Andersonville Diary, p. 112

Colonel Ethan Allen to Isaac N. Phelps, January 27, 1863

New-York, Jan. 27th, 1863.
Mr. I. N. Phelps

Dear Sir: I am not only willing, but anxious to secure the services of Capt. W. T. Lusk of the 79th Regiment, as Lt.-Col. of the Regiment I am now organizing in this city. It not being my design to lead the Regt. when raised, I appoint Capt. Lusk with the view of his ultimately commanding the Regiment which I think bids fair to be completed at no very distant day. If Capt. Lusk can be relieved from his present duties in the army, and be permitted to fill the position in which it is my desire to place him, I am sure the change will be of service both to himself and to the country.

Your obedient servant,
Ethan Allen,
Colonel Blair Light Infantry, 3d Regt.,           
Merchants Brigade.

SOURCE: William Chittenden Lusk, Editor, War Letters of William Thompson Lusk, p. 276

Captain Charles Wright Wills: March 12, 1864

Scottsboro, Ala., March 12, 1864.

I have been tremendously demoralized for nearly a month in consequence of a terrible cold I caught by some of my carelessness, I suppose, but am now coming out of it all right. Weather is most beautiful. Not too much duty, excellent camp, remarkably good health, and everything so near right, that almost think a soldier who'd grumble here deserves shooting. Were I disposed to complain am sure I could only find two little topics whereof to speak; one being the fact that 'tis impossible to get anything to eat here excepting regular army rations, not even hams can be had, and the other the long-continued absence of the paymaster. We are hoping that both these matters will be remedied 'ere long, but have been so hoping for months. We have a division purveyor now, who pretends that he will furnish us in good eatables. We have had but a few articles from him, and I'll tell you the prices of those I remember. Can of strawberries, $1.75; cheese, 80 cents a pound; bottle (about one and one-half pints) pickled beets, $1.50. If I could draw the pay of a brigadier general, and then live on half rations, think I might come out even with said purveyor for my caterer.

Everything perfectly stagnant. We did hear day before yesterday some quite rapid artillery firing for an hour or two; it sounded as though it might have been some ten or twelve miles southwest of us. 'Twas reported by scouts a few days ago that the enemy was preparing flatboats at Guntersville to cross the river on, with intent to make a raid up in this direction or toward Huntsville. The 15th Michigan Mounted Infantry was sent down to look after the matter, ran into an ambuscade and lost a dozen or so killed and wounded. That's all I heard of the matter. We were very sorry that the loss was so light, for they are a miserable set. We are going to have a dance here in a few days. Think I'll go. Anything at all to get out of camp. I'm as restless as a tree top after marching so much. You don't know how tame this camp business is. Am afraid I will get the “blues” yet. Hurry up the spring campaign, I say.

SOURCE: Charles Wright Wills, Army Life of an Illinois Soldier, p. 219

Captain Charles Wright Wills: March 15, 1864

Scottsboro, Ala., March 15, 1864.

I am again on court martial duty, with a prospect of a long siege; but we have an experienced President and a Judge Advocate who promises to be a fast worker; so we may get through quicker than we anticipated. The President, Colonel Heath, 100th Indiana, is a Bob Ingersoll for the world, that is, full of anecdote and fond of malt. 'Tis probably fortunate that at this time none of the latter is to be had in our division. I dislike detached service in any shape, but prefer court martial duty to almost any other. Would much rather be with my company, and if it were not considered so nix military would ask to be relieved from this. You can't imagine how proud I am becoming of my company. I have never had an iota of trouble with them. We certainly work as smoothly as any company could. We are all in high feather over the prospect of going to Richmond. Everybody wants to start immediately. If the 15th and 17th corps reach the Rapidan, we doubt your hearing anything more about recrossing the Rapidan and taking positions inside the Washington fortifications. Our corps don't get along well with these Cumberland and Potomac soldiers. To hear our men talk to them when passing them or their camps marching, you'd think the feeling between us and the Rebels could be no more bitter. We are well off by ourselves, but still we don't feel at home. We're too far from our old comrades, 13th, 16th and 17th Corps. This feeling that grows up between regiments, brigades, divisions and corps is very strong and as strange. The 4th and 14th Corps Cumberland chaps our men can endure, although much in the spirit a dog chewing a bone, allows another to come within ten feet. The 11th and 12th Corps Potomac men, and ours never meet without some very hard talk. I must do the Yankees the justice to say that our men, I believe, always commence it, and are the most ungentlemanly by great odds. I do honestly think our corps in one respect composed of the meanest set of men, that was ever thrown together. That is, while on the march they make it a point to abuse every man or thing they see. They always feel “bully,” will certainly march further with less straggling, and make more noise whooping than any other corps in service, but if a strange soldier or citizen comes in sight, pity him, and if he's foolish enough to ask a question, as “what regiment,” or “where are you bound for?” he'll wish himself a mile under ground before he hears all the answers, and ten to one not a whit of the information he asked for will be in any of them. We have no pay yet, and no prospects now, but doing good business borrowing.

SOURCE: Charles Wright Wills, Army Life of an Illinois Soldier, p. 217-8

Diary of 2nd Lieutenant Luman Harris Tenney: July 1, 1864

Got a light ration of forage. Lay in the dirt all day. Bought some rations and got some sanitary stores. Got along well. Ordered to move in the morning at 6.

SOURCE: Frances Andrews Tenney, War Diary Of Luman Harris Tenney, p. 123

Diary of 2nd Lieutenant Luman Harris Tenney: July 2, 1864

Rations of forage and commissary. Marched about 8. Went by the 9th Corps. Maj. Seward, Meeks, Thede and I rode over to Wilcox's Div. and saw Reeve Spencer. Went up to the line and saw the 60th Ohio. Got popped at twice by sharpshooters, and were careful too. Took dinner with Reeve. Our works strong but rebel works full as strong and occupying more commanding ground and much of the ground in rear of our 1st line. Sharpshooters doing much damage. About 20 hit each day in the Div. Interested in the heavy works taken by the 18th Corps and by the Darkies. Saw quite an artillery duel between a heavy battery on our side and reb battery on the other side of Appomattox. Petersburg in plain view. Splendid time. Rode down to City Point and thence to Light House Point where we found our corps, about 200 2nd O. V. V. C. quite encouraging. The Detachments came down behind us.

SOURCE: Frances Andrews Tenney, War Diary Of Luman Harris Tenney, p. 123

Diary of 2nd Lieutenant Luman Harris Tenney: July 3, 1864

Went to City Point with Kelly. Had a real good visit with Brother John. Seemed splendid to see him. Got back to the corps about dusk. Visited the Sanitary. Big thing. (Prof. John M. Ellis was serving on the Christian Commission at City Point.)

SOURCE: Frances Andrews Tenney, War Diary Of Luman Harris Tenney, p. 123

Diary of 2nd Lieutenant Luman Harris Tenney: July 4, 1864

Spent the day very quietly in camp. Have been great rumors as to today's proceedings, but nothing has occurred as we hear.

SOURCE: Frances Andrews Tenney, War Diary Of Luman Harris Tenney, p. 124

Thursday, April 19, 2018

The Departure of Ex-President Buchanan

Ex-President Buchanan departed on his journey for Wheatland this afternoon in the 3 o’clock train, after first exchanging many farewell handshakings with numerous friends.  He was escorted to the railroad depot by the President’s Mounted Guard, Capt Woens, numbering sixty-five rank and file, and the first battalion Union Regiment, Major J. G. Jewell, who gave three hearty cheers as the train left.

- Published in Evening Star, Washington, D.C, Tuesday, March 5, 1861, p. 3

Movements of President Lincoln

On arriving at the Executive Mansion yesterday, Mr. Lincoln held a brief reception, but being much fatigued, and the crowd irrepressible, the doors were soon closed, and Mr. Lincoln was shut in with a few intimate friends.  As General Scott left the President’s House, escorted by his aids, he was followed by a large crowd, all eager to shake hands with him, many of whom did so.  Upon entering his carriage three hearty cheers were given for him, and with a hasty shake of the hand with one or two, the carriage was driven off, with the crowd following until it was left far behind.

To-day, at 3½ p. m., the citizens of Illinois now in Washington will proceed to the Presidential Mansion and pay their respects to President Lincoln.

- Published in Evening Star, Washington, D.C, Tuesday, March 5, 1861, p. 3

Diary of William Howard Russell: July 2, 1861

At early dawn this morning, looking out of the sleeping car, I saw through the mist a broad, placid river on the right, and on the left high wooded banks running sharply into the stream, against the base of which the rails were laid. West Point, which is celebrated for its picturesque scenery, as much as for its military school, could not be seen through the fog, and I regretted time did not allow me to stop and pay a visit to the academy. I was obliged to content myself with the handiwork of some of the ex-pupils. The only camaraderie I have witnessed in America exists among the West Point men. It is to Americans what our great public schools are to young Englishmen. To take a high place at West Point is to be a first-class man, or wrangler. The academy turns out a kind of military aristocracy, and I have heard complaints that the Irish and Germans are almost completely excluded, because the nominations to West Point are obtained by political influence; and the foreign element, though powerful at the ballot-box, has no enduring strength. The Murphies and Schmidts seldom succeed in shoving their sons into the American institution. North and South, I have observed, the old pupils refer everything military to West Point. “I was with Beauregard at West Point. He was three above me.” Or, “McDowell and I were in the same class.” An officer is measured by what he did there, and if professional jealousies date from the state of common pupilage, so do lasting friendships. I heard Beauregard, Lawton, Hardee, Bragg, and others, speak of McDowell, Lyon, McClellan, and other men of the academy, as their names turned up in the Northern papers, evidently judging of them by the old school standard. The number of men who have been educated there greatly exceeds the modest requirements of the army. But there is likelihood of their being all in full work very soon.

At about nine, A. M., the train reached New York, and in driving to the house of Mr. Duncan, who accompanied me from Niagara, the first thing which struck me was the changed aspect of the streets. Instead of peaceful citizens, men in military uniforms thronged the pathways, and such multitudes of United States flags floated from the windows and roofs of the houses as to convey the impression that it was a great holiday festival. The appearance of New York when I first saw it was very different. For one day, indeed, after my arrival, there were men in uniform to be seen in the streets, but they disappeared after St. Patrick had been duly honored, and it was very rarely I ever saw a man in soldier's clothes during the rest of my stay. Now, fully a third of the people carried arms, and were dressed in some kind of martial garb.

The walls are covered with placards from military companies offering inducements to recruits. An outburst of military tailors has taken place in the streets; shops are devoted to militia equipments; rifles, pistols, swords, plumes, long boots, saddle, bridle, camp belts, canteens, tents, knapsacks, have usurped the place of the ordinary articles of traffic. Pictures and engravings — bad, and very bad — of the “battles” of Big Bethel and Vienna, full of furious charges, smoke and dismembered bodies, have driven the French prints out of the windows. Innumerable "General Scott's" glower at you from every turn, making the General look wiser than he or any man ever was. Ellsworths in almost equal proportion, Grebles and Winthrops — the Union martyrs — and Tompkins, the temporary hero of Fairfax court-house.

The “flag of our country” is represented in a colored engraving, the original of which was not destitute of poetical feeling, as an angry blue sky through which meteors fly streaked by the winds, whilst between the red stripes the stars just shine out from the heavens, the flag-staff being typified by a forest tree bending to the force of the blast. The Americans like this idea — to my mind it is significant of bloodshed and disaster. And why not! What would become of all these pseudo-Zouaves who have come out like an eruption over the States, and are in no respect, not even in their baggy breeches, like their great originals, if this war were not to go on? I thought I had had enough of Zouaves in New Orleans, but dȋs aliter visum.

They are overrunning society, and the streets here, and the dress which becomes the broad-chested, stumpy, short-legged Celt, who seems specially intended for it, is singularly unbecoming to the tall and slightly-built American. Songs “On to glory,” “Our country,” new versions of “Hail Columbia,” which certainly cannot be considered by even American complacency a “happy land” when its inhabitants are preparing to cut each other's throats; of the “star-spangled banner,” are displayed in booksellers’ and music-shop windows, and patriotic sentences emblazoned on flags float from many houses. The ridiculous habit of dressing up children and young people up to ten and twelve years of age as Zouaves and vivandières has been caught up by the old people, and Mars would die with laughter if he saw some of the abdominous, be-spectacled light infantry men who are hobbling along the pavement.

There has been indeed a change in New York; externally it is most remarkable, but I cannot at all admit that the abuse with which I was assailed for describing the indifference which prevailed on my arrival was in the least degree justified. I was desirous of learning how far the tone of conversation “in the city” had altered, and soon after breakfast I went down Broadway to Pine Street and Wall Street. The street in all its length was almost draped with flags — the warlike character of the shops was intensified. In front of one shop window there was a large crowd gazing with interest at some object which I at last succeeded in feasting my eyes upon. A gray cap with a tinsel badge in front, and the cloth stained with blood was displayed, with the words, “Cap of Secession officer killed in action.” On my way I observed another crowd of women, some with children in their arms standing in front of a large house and gazing up earnestly and angrily at the windows. I found they were wives, mothers, and sisters, and daughters of volunteers who had gone off and left them destitute.

The misery thus caused has been so great that the citizens of New York have raised a fund to provide food, clothes, and a little money — a poor relief, in fact, for them, and it was plain they were much needed, though some of the applicants did not seem to belong to a class accustomed to seek aid from the public. This already! But Wall Street and Pine Street are bent on battle. And so this day, hot from the South and impressed with the firm resolve of the people, and finding that the North has been lashing itself into fury, I sit down and write to England, on my return from the city. “At present dismiss entirely the idea, no matter how it may originate, that there will be, or can be, peace, compromise, union, or secession, till war has determined the issue.”
As long as there was a chance that the struggle might not take place, the merchants of New York were silent, fearful of offending their Southern friends and connections, but inflicting infinite damage on their own government and misleading both sides. Their sentiments, sympathies, and business bound them with the South; and, indeed, till “the glorious uprising” the South believed New York was with them, as might be credited from the tone of some organs in the press, and I remember hearing it said by Southerners in Washington, that it was very likely New York would go out of the Union! When the merchants, however, saw the South was determined to quit the Union, they resolved to avert the permanent loss of the great profits derived from their connection with the South by some present sacrifices. They rushed to the platforms — the battle-cry was sounded from almost every pulpit — flag-raisings took place in every square, like the planting of the tree of liberty in France in 1848, and the oath was taken to trample Secession under foot, and to quench the fire of the Southern heart forever.

The change in manner, in tone, in argument, is most remarkable. I met men to-day who last March argued coolly and philosophically about the right of Secession. They are now furious at the idea of such wickedness — furious with England, because she does not deny their own famous doctrine of the sacred right of insurrection. “We must maintain our glorious Union, sir.” “We must have a country.” “We cannot allow two nations to grow up on this Continent, sir.” “We must possess the entire control of the Mississippi.” These “musts,” and can’ts,” and “won'ts,” are the angry utterances of a spirited people who have had their will so long that they at last believe it is omnipotent. Assuredly, they will not have it over the South without a tremendous and long-sustained contest, in which they must put forth every exertion, and use all the resources and superior means they so abundantly possess.

It is absurd to assert, as do the New York people, to give some semblance of reason to their sudden outburst, that it was caused by the insult to the flag at Sumter. Why, the flag had been fired on long before Sumter was attacked by the Charleston batteries! It had been torn down from United States arsenals and forts all over the South; and but for the accident which placed Major Anderson in a position from which he could not retire, there would have been no bombardment of the fort, and it would, when evacuated, have shared the fate of all the other Federal works on the Southern coast. Some of the gentlemen who are now so patriotic and Unionistic, were last March prepared to maintain that if the President attempted to reenforce Sumter or Pickens, he would be responsible for the destruction of the Union. Many journals in New York and out of it held the same doctrine.

One word to these gentlemen. I am pretty well satisfied that if they had always spoken, written, and acted as they do now, the people of Charleston would not have attacked Sumter so readily. The abrupt outburst of the North and the demonstration at New York filled the South, first with astonishment, and then with something like fear, which was rapidly fanned into anger by the press and the politicians, as well as by the pride inherent in slaveholders.

I wonder what Mr. Seward will say when I get back to Washington. Before I left, he was of opinion — at all events, he stated — that all the States would come back, at the rate of one a month. The nature of the process was not stated; but we are told there are 250,000 Federal troops now under arms, prepared to try a new one.

Combined with the feeling of animosity to the rebels, there is, I perceive, a good deal of ill-feeling towards Great Britain. The Southern papers are so angry with us for the Order in Council closing British ports against privateers and their prizes, that they advise Mr. Rust and Mr. Yancey to leave Europe. We are in evil case between North and South. I met a reverend doctor, who is most bitter in his expressions towards us; and I dare say, Bishop and General Leonidas Polk, down South, would not be much better disposed. The clergy are active on both sides; and their flocks approve of their holy violence. One journal tells, with much gusto, of a blasphemous chaplain, a remarkably good rifle shot, who went into one of the skirmishes lately, and killed a number of rebels — the joke being, in fact, that each time he' fired and brought down his man, he exclaimed, piously, “May Heaven have mercy on your soul!” One Father Mooney, who performed the novel act, for a clergyman, of “christening” a big gun at Washington the other day, wound up the speech he made on the occasion, by declaring “the echo of its voice would be sweet music, inviting the children of Columbia to share the comforts of his father's home.” Can impiety and folly and bad taste go further?

SOURCE: William Howard Russell, My Diary North and South, Vol. 1, p. 367-72

Thomas Wentworth Higginson, after March 20, 1852*

Will nobody stop these Beechers? Here is Mrs. Stowe getting into trouble again. The "Christian Watchman " has his eye on her. Jesus of Nazareth was a dangerous innovator in his day, but what is he to Mrs. Stowe? He only sat at meat with publicans and sinners, but she is actually announced to write a novel in the same “Atlantic Monthly” which [endorses] . . . a man who says, "If we do our duty manfully in this world, we need give ourselves no great anxiety about our fate in the next one!”

* “Uncle Tom’s Cabin was first published in book form on March 20, 1852.

SOURCE: Mary Potter Thacher Higginson, Editor, Letters and Journals of Thomas Wentworth Higginson, 1846-1906, p. 54

George L. Stearns to John Brown, February 4, 1858

My Dear friend:

Your letter of the 11th inst. was received from Boston to-day. The $500 was furnished you by Whitman at my request. It was done because I thought you needed money for the winter, not because I felt myself under obligation to you, for I had made up my mind then, and still continue to believe that our friends need no aid in defending themselves from all marauders, and that their true course now is to meet the enemy at the ballot-box, and vote them down on every occasion. With the Territorial Legislature in their hands, they can defend themselves against every oppression, and they should do so. If I am correct in my conclusions, the contingency for which I gave you my pledge having ceased to exist, I am no longer bound by it, and it should be returned to me without conditions.1 From your last letter to me I supposed you would return it as early as convenient to you.

If am in error I shall be glad to be enlightened by you, and hope to receive on my return to Boston an early reply to this.

I am not, however, indifferent to your request, believing your advice and encouragement to our friends to be of great importance.

If you can go to Boston you will have a much better chance of success, and I will aid you as far as it is proper that I should do so.

Colonel Forbes has written several abusive letters to Charles Sumner, and Sanborn, claiming that you had made a positive contract to pay him money, based on promises made to you by the New England men. Is it so?

Truly yours,
Geo. L. Stearns.

1 This may refer to the draft for $7000.

SOURCE: Frank Preston Stearns, The Life and Public Services of George Luther Stearns, p. 162; Edward J. Jr. Renehan, Secret Six: The True Tale of the Men Who Conspired with John Brown, p. 130 for the date of the letter.

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Diary of Julia Ward Howe: Wednesday April 19, 1865

The day of President Lincoln's funeral. A sad, disconnected day. I could not work, but strolled around to see the houses, variously draped in black and white. Went to Bartol's church, not knowing of a service at our own. Bartol's remarks were tender and pathetic. I was pleased to have heard them.

Wrote some verses about the President — pretty good, perhaps, — scratching the last nearly in the dark, just before bedtime.

This is the poem called “Parricide.” It begins: —

O'er the warrior gauntlet grim
Late the silken glove we drew.
Bade the watch-fires slacken dim
In the dawn's auspicious hue.
Staid the armed heel;
Still the clanging steel;
Joys unwonted thrilled the silence through.

SOURCE: Laura E. Richards & Maud Howe Elliott, Julia Ward Howe, 1819-1910, Large-Paper Edition, Volume 1, p. 221

Horace Mann to Mary Peabody Mann, March 8, 1850

[WASHINGTON, D.C., March 8, 1850.]

Mr. Webster spoke yesterday; and (can you believe it?) he is a fallen star! — Lucifer descending from heaven! His intellectual life has been one great epic, and now he has given a vile catastrophe to its closing pages. He has walked for years among the gods, to descend from the empyrean heights, and mingle with mimes and apes!

SOURCE: Laura E. Richards, Editor, Letters and Journals of Samuel Gridley Howe, Volume 2, p. 264-5

William T. Sherman to George Mason Graham, August 20, 1859

Lancaster, O., Aug. 20,1859.

Dear Sir: I wrote you a few days ago, in part answer to your very kind note addressed me at Lancaster. I am now in possession of your more full letter sent by way of Leavenworth, and shall receive to-day the printed reports to which you referred.

These will in great measure answer the manifold questions propounded by me. When in full possession of these I will again write you, and when I know you are at Washington, I may come there to meet you, and to make those preliminary arrangements as to furnishing the building, selecting text books, etc., all of which will no doubt have to be approved by the Board of Education in Louisiana.

I can easily secure from West Point the most complete information on all the details of the management and economy of that institution. Then, being in possession of similar data from the Virginia Institution, we can easily lay a simple foundation, on which to erect, as time progresses, a practical system of physical and mental education, adapted to the circumstances of Louisiana. I shall not take my family south this winter, and shall hold myself prepared to meet you at Alexandria, or elsewhere, at the earliest date you think best. I feel deeply moved by your friendly interest in me, and both socially and in the new field hereby opened to me I will endeavor to reciprocate your personal interest and justify your choice of a superintendent.

I have seen a good deal of the practical world, and have acquired considerable knowledge, but it may be desultory, and may require some time to reduce it to system, and therefore I feel inclined to see the Board of Education1 select a good series of practical books as textbooks.

If this has already been done, I will be the better pleased; if this devolve on the professors it will require some judgment to adjust them, lest each professor should attempt too much, and give preference to textbooks not intimately connected with the other classes. The adjustment of the course of studies, the selection of the kind and distribution of physical, muscular education, and how far instruction in infantry, sword and even artillery practice shall be introduced are all important points, but fortunately we have a wide field of choice, and the benefit of the experience of others. As soon as I learn you are in Washington, and as soon as I know all that has been done, I will give my thoughts and action to provide in advance the knowledge out of which the Board of Education may choose the remainder.

1 Board of Supervisors of the Seminary. — ED.

SOURCE: Walter L. Flemming, Editor, General W.T. Sherman as College President, p. 33-4

David Hunter Strother’s Description of Governor Henry A. Wise’s Interview with John Brown, November 5, 1859

The mid-day train [October 18] brought Governor Wise, accompanied by several hundred men from Richmond, Alexandria, Baltimore, and elsewhere. Accompanied by Andrew Hunter, the Governor repaired to the guard-room where the two wounded prisoners lay, and had a conversation with Brown. The Governor treated the wounded man with a courtesy that evidently surprised him. Brown was lying upon the floor with his feet to the fire and his head propped upon pillows on the back of a chair. His hair was a mass of clotted gore, so that I could not distinguish the original color; his eye a pale blue or gray, nose Roman, and beard (originally sandy) white and blood-stained. His speech was frequently interrupted by deep groans, reminding me of the agonized growl of a ferocious beast. A few feet from the leader lay Stephens, a fine-looking fellow, quiet, not in pain apparently, and conversing in a voice as full and natural as if he were unhurt. However, his hands lay folded upon his breast in a child-like, helpless way, — a position that I observed was assumed by all those who had died or were dying of their wounds. Only those who were shot stone-dead lay as they fell.

Brown was frank and communicative, answering all questions without reserve, except such as might implicate his associates. I append extracts from notes taken by Mr. Hunter: —

“Brown avers that the small pamphlet, many copies of which were found on the persons of the slain, and entitled Provisional Constitution and Ordinances for the People of the United States, was prepared principally by himself; under its provisions he was appointed Commanderin-Chief. His two sons and Stephens were each captains, and Coppoc a lieutenant; they each had commissions, issued by himself. He avers that the whole number operating under this organization was but twenty-two, each of whom had taken the oath required by Article 48; but he confidently expected large reinforcements from Virginia, Kentucky, Maryland, North and South Carolina, and several other Slave States, besides the Free States, — taking it for granted that it was only necessary to seize the public arms and place them in the hands of the negroes and non-slaveholders to recruit his forces indefinitely. In this calculation he reluctantly and indirectly admitted that he had been disappointed.”

“When Governor Wise went away, some of us lingered, and the old man recurred again to his sons, of whom he had spoken several times, asking if we were sure they were both dead. He was assured that it was so. ‘How many bodies did you take from the engine-house?’ he asked. He was told three. ‘Then they are not both dead; there were three dead bodies there last night. Gentlemen, my son is doubtless living and in your power. I will ask for him what I would not ask for myself; let him have kind treatment, for he is as pure and noble-hearted a youth as ever breathed the breath of life.’ His prayer was vain. Both his boys lay stark and bloody by the Armory wall.”

SOURCES: Franklin B. Sanborn, The Life and Letters of John Brown, p. 569-70; Excerpt from Harper’s Weekly, New York, New York, Saturday, November 5, 1859, p. 10, the last paragraph of above has been edited and is slightly different from the original.

Henry Washington to William Still, November 12, 1855

St. Catharines, C. W. Nov. 12, 1855.

MR. WILLIAM STILL: — Dear Sir:— I have received a letter from Joseph G. Selden a friend in Norfolk, Va., informing me of the death of my wife, who deceased since I saw you here; he also informs me that my clothing will be forwarded to you by Jupiter White, who now has it in his charge. You will therefore do me a great favor, if you will be so good as to forward them to me at this place St. Catharines, C. W.

The accompanying letter is the one received from Mr. Selden which I send you, that you may see that it is all right. You will please give my respects to Mrs. Still and family.

Most respectfully yours,

SOURCE: William Still, The Underground Railroad: A Record of Facts, Authentic Narratives, Letters &c., p. 261

Senator Salmon P. Chase to Edward S. Hamlin, January 22, 1855

Washington, Jan’y 22, 1855.

My Dear Sir, I am in fault as usual about my correspondence. My only excuse is that I have more to read, write & talk than one man can do.

Your article in the Columbian was very bold: bolder than I should have ventured to write. I refer of course to the one in reply to the Sandusky Register. It is not, however, at all clear to me that your policy is not the wisest and most safe. At any rate I am disposed to confide entirely in your judgment, so far as the interest of the Ind’. Demc. wing of the Peoples Movement is concerned.

It is disagreeable to me to have the battle for a decided recognition of Antislavery principles & movement by the new organization carried on over my person. The Governorship is only desirable so far as I am concerned as a simple endorsement of my course in the Senate, & especially on the Slavery question, by the People. In other respects the reasons against being a candidate rather over balance the reasons for being one: and I am by no means persuaded that I ought to accept a nomination even if one should be tendered me. Certain it is that I do not wish my name to be the cause of division among the sincere & earnest well wishers of the Peoples Movement. Taking their ideas as my guides I shall patiently await the course of events for a few months before I determine positively what I ought to do.

Houston is going to Boston. He will probably lecture there on the [last of] this month. He is the favorite of the Massachusetts Kns1 for the Presidency: and I think he will have a chance for the nomination of the order if he does not injure himself in Boston.

It is now certain almost that Wilson will be chosen Senator from Massachusetts. He cannot back out on the Slavery question and his election will be a decided triumph of the Antislavery element in the K. N. organization. It may lead to disruption. It guarantees, I think, against the order being converted into as mere a tool of the Slave Power as the old organizations have been. This, however, is a future event.

I am assured by reliable men in Ohio that there is no possibility of the order there being made proslavery. They may be deceived, but I am sure they don't mean to deceive. Those who write me feel somewhat sore about your course & Bailey's. They think that the tone of your editorials and his is calculated to weaken the hold & influence of Antislavery men, & to make the members of the sides less disposed than they would be otherwise to cooperate with outsiders on the Slavery issue. They think it would be better if you admitted that there was some ground for the [union] of the people against papal influences & organized foreignism, while you might condemn the secret organization & indiscriminate proscription on account of origin or creed. You know best how much weight to give to these suggestions. To me they seem to indicate about the wisest course; but I repeat I am disposed on these matters to confide more in your judgment than in my own.

I saw Judge Myers here. He seemed to think the prospect of election on the Convention Platform rather blue. He said Medill talked of resigning the nomination, but had concluded to hold on, and he seemed to have had the same idea & to have come to the same conclusion. The ticket must be [illegible] unless the Kns determine to claim all the nominations for members of the sides: in which event the result would be more doubtful. Certainly we ought to do nothing & say nothing calculated to prevent entire harmony of cooperation among all opponents of Sly. & the Slave Power upon fair & honorable principles & terms. So far as I can see there is nothing to be expected from the Old Line Democracy in its present position. It will be time enough to consider whether we ought to act with them when they place themselves in a position which renders such action possible & compatible with our consistency and honor. I want to write you often & to hear from you often, but I am much pressed for time & constantly interrupted.

1 Knownothings.

SOURCE: Diary and correspondence of Salmon P. ChaseAnnual Report of the American Historical Association for the Year 1902, Vol. 2, p. 267-9

Simon Cameron to Captain Gustavus V. Fox, April 4, 1861

War Department        
Washington, April 4, 1861

It having been determined to succor Fort Sumter, you have been selected for this important duty. Accordingly you will take charge of the transports provided in New York, having the troops and supplies on board, to the entrance of Charleston Harbor, and endeavor, in the first instance, to deliver the subsistence. If you are opposed in this you are directed to report the fact to the Senior Naval officer off the harbor, who will be instructed by the Secretary of the Navy to use his entire force to open a passage, when you will, if possible, effect an entrance and place both the troops and supplies in Fort Sumter.

I am sir,
Very Respectfully
Your obt. servt.
Simon Cameron
Sec'y of War.
Capt. G. V. Fox
Washington D. C.

SOURCES: Robert Means Thompson & Richard Wainwright, Editors, Publications of the Naval Historical Society, Volume 9: Confidential Correspondence of Gustavus Vasa Fox, Assistant Secretary of the Navy, 1861-1865, Volume 1, p. 20-1

Diary of Gideon Welles: Saturday, January 23, 1864

Hiram Barney, Collector at New York, called on me. Is feeling depressed. The late frauds, or lately discovered frauds, annoy him. . . .

Chase sends me a letter in relation to Pensacola and the suggestions I made to open Trans-Mississippi to trade and commerce. In each case he fails to respond to my propositions favorably. Although late, I am for means that will bring peace and kindly feeling. Commerce and intercourse will help.

The trial of Stover, a contractor, by court martial at Philadelphia has come to a close. He is found guilty on three charges and is fined $5000, and is to suffer one year's imprisonment in such prison as the Secretary of the Navy may select. It is, in my opinion, a proper punishment for a dishonest man, but the law is in some of its features of a questionable character. Likely it will be tested, for Stover has money, obtained by fraudulent means from the government. I have deliberated over the subject and come to the conclusion to approve the proceedings, and send Stover to Fort Lafayette instead of a penitentiary. Captain Latimer writes that Stover has left Philadelphia and gone to New York. I have therefore written to Admiral Paulding to arrest and send him to Fort L. The President concurs.

SOURCE: Gideon Welles, Diary of Gideon Welles, Secretary of the Navy Under Lincoln and Johnson, Vol. 1: 1861 – March 30, 1864, p. 514-5

Colonel Rutherford B. Hayes to Sardis Birchard, July 6, 1863

Camp White, July 6, 1863.

Dear Uncle: — . . . I propose to take in your bank twenty-five hundred dollars stock in Lucy's name. Please see when you get the cash to put the stock in her name. I have in Stephenson's hands one thousand dollars and expect fifteen hundred dollars more in three weeks. I send you an order for it.

Reports from the East look well. If true, we shall perhaps go forward here. The Rebels found fighting in the enemy's country a different thing from battling on their own ground.

R. B. Hayes.

SOURCE: Charles Richard Williams, editor, Diary and Letters of Rutherford Birchard Hayes, Volume 2, p. 416