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NEW YORK “UNION DEFENSE COMMITTEE."

THE

The New York " Union Defense Com

mittee."

duty to say on this subject, the Committee would | exigencies of the times,
simply remark, that the lesson afforded by the sur deserves notice, viz. : the
render of the Norfolk Navy-yard will not be wholly “New York Union Defense
without its value to us, if we shall learn by it, as a Committee”—an organization which grew
nation, that pusillanimity in the defense of our rights out of the great Union demonstration of
may be as seriously injurious as the open assaults

April 20th. Twenty-six influential citizens of our enemies."

were named by that meeting as a committee Pending these important An Extraordinary

“to represent the citizens in the collection transactions, the military Spectacle.

of funds, and the transaction of such other movements of the North

business in aid of the movements of the Gov. were of a nature to excite the astonishment of both the friends and the enemies of the The funds flowed in in heavy amounts,

ernment, as the public interest may require.”

while Government. The rapidity with which regi- the New York city authorities soon placed ments filled up and hastened southward; the the munificent sum of one million of dollars absorption into the ranks, as officers and

to be expended under the Committee's manmen, of those occupying, in many instances,

agement. Thus empowered, the work of eminent positions in commercial, political, assistance commenced; and, as the Commitreligious, and literary circles; the formation

tee stated in their report of September 19th, of societies devoted to the welfare of the 1861 : “ Mainly owing to the exertions of the volunteers and their families ; the heavy do- city and citizens of New York, and to the nations of individuals and corporations to zeal and efficiency of eminent officers, (par. the funds of regiments for arming, equipping, ticularly referring to General Wool, an army and sustaining them; the action of banks

was placed in the field, armed and equipped and men of wealth in placing immense sums for the defense of the National cause, in a at the disposal of States--all contributed to briefer space of time and with less expendirender the spectacle one of extraordinary so-ture of money, than, so far as any record lemnity and novelty. The Harper's Ferry shows, ever before was accomplished by any and Gosport Navy-yard affairs, the threaten. Government, no matter how great its power, ed assault on Washington and its isolated how abundant its resources, or how powerful condition, the notes of defiance which came

the motive for its action.” We should, also, up from the South, and the gathering of its in justice to New York and her sister Comarmies for a Northern campaign, while they

monwealth, Massachusetts, further quote the added intensity to the war-spirit of the Free Committee's words: “ With a generous frankStates, also served to assure the people of the

ness which confers honor upon the stations necessity for providing for the “common de- they fill, the chief Executive officers of the fense”—for an obstinate if not a prolonged National Government, and the distinguished struggle.

Commanding General of the army, have been The sudden call for troops found the Gen- pleased to say that the safety of the National eral Government in a comparatively help- Capital and the preservation of the archives 'less condition. With no stores of arms and

of th Government at a moment when both ordnance to draw upon, no organized sub

were seriously menaced, may fairly be attrisistence and quartermaster departments, no buted to the prompt and efficient action of depots of clothing and camp equipment, no

the State and city of New York, united with means at its immediate disposal to provide the vigorous efforts of the noble Commonfor the immense drains upon its treasury- wealth of Massachusetts, devoted to the same the emergency was one of peril; but, the

patriotic object." As Rhode Island was patriotism of States, cities, individuals and among the pioneers — having her superb banks came to the relief, bountifully supply- regiment and splendidly-equipped battery ing all that money could secure, though the in the field with those first forward, want of arms was not fully obviated for many that little State of wise heads and busy anxious months.

hands should have been named in this roll One of these agencies, called forth by the of honor.

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The report of the Committee stated at malign presence. Indeed, the city never was length the amount and character of the im- free of the unnatural apostates. portant services which it rendered-gratui- The reception extended

Reception of the New tously, so far as their own time and onerous to the gallant Seventh, was

York Seventh. labors were concerned. From it we learn thus chronicled by one

that it assisted into the present : “At the depot they were received The New York Ad

field, and stimulated to the with the utmost enthusiasm. But their march vance Regiments.

advance of all the splendid down and up Pennsylvania avenue, past the regiments of New York Militia which re- hotels, the State and Treasury Departments, sponded to the call and were among the was a triumphal procession. The steps and earliest to reach the Capital, viz. : the Seven- balconies of the hotels, the windows of the ty-First, Colonel Vosburgh; Sixth, Colonel private houses, the doorways of the stores, Pinckney ; Twelfth, Colonel Butterfield ; and even the roofs of many houses, were Eighth, Colonel Lyons; Fifth, Colonel crowded with men, women and children, Schwarzwelder ; Sixty-Ninth, Colonel Cor- shouting, and waving handkerchiefs and flags. coran; Second, Colonel Tomkins; Ninth, Many and brilliant have been the greetings Colonel Stiles; Seventy-Ninth, Colonel Came- they have received at home and abroad, but ron. All these regiments were standing or- never have they been welcomed before with ganizations which had only to fill up their such heartfelt and grateful plaudits. ranks and hurry forward to the Capital. “The regiment had been looked for day They were accompanied by the Brooklyn after day and hour after hour, until many (New York Militia) regiments, viz.: the had almost adopted the conclusion that the Thirteenth, Colonel Smith ; Twenty-Eighth, name was a myth, and their existence a very Colonel Bennett; and Fourteenth, Colonel sham. But their appearance at last cheered Wood. To all of these the Committee acted every heart, and filled many an eye with warın as director and paymaster-general. The Ul- tears of joy and thankfulness. Union men ster Twentieth Regiment of New York Mi- who had hung their heads, now walked litia completed the quota of the standing erect, and the few Secessionists still in our militia of the Empire State which quickly midst who had been blatant in their sneers found their way to the seat of danger. at the northern men who were invincible in

The Massachusetts Eighth, peace and invisible in war,' now slunk away, Washington Safe.

as stated, piloted the way lest their very presence should excite the to Annapolis, preserved the frigate Constitu- loyal men to give them the punishment their tion from seizure, and landed to take posses-treason deserved. Every honor the citizens sion of the railway depot and works prepara- could devise at the moment, was accorded to tory to appropriating the road to Government them. On their return from the Capitol,

While the Eighth was prosecuting the they met many ladies with rosettes in their work of relaying the track and repairing the bonnets, and gentlemen with rosettes in their bridges, the New York Seventh pushed on button-holes, and many persons with small ahead, reaching the Junction (eighteen miles) flags in their hands. after thirty hours of most arduous tramping “The regiment marched past the White and railway repairing. From the Junction House and then wheeling, passed through the it passed to Washington by railroad—arriving west gate, and in front of the President's at the Capital Thursday, April 18th, to glad house. Thegateway was thronged with ladies den the bearts of all but the many traitors and gentlemen. Mrs. Lincoln sat at one of the who lingered in the Departments, who in-open windows, accompanied by several other fested every public place, who lurked every- ladies. The President, accompanied by the where throughout the city under the guise Secretaries of State and of War, and surrounded of citizens—creatures who stood ready to be- by uniformed United States Army officers, tray the Government to which they had stood upon the sidewalk near the steps, in the sworn solemn allegiance. It was long before broiling sun, with his hat off, towering above the authorities could purge the city of their the crowd, and here received the marching

uses.

TUE

POSITION

OF

MARYLAND.

117

salu. of the Seventh. There was no speech | New York Seventy-first and Twelfth, and making. The Quartermaster reported the Governor Sprague's Rhode Islanders — the presence of the regiment, and the Colonel was first influx of that tide of “Northern invaders" presented to the President; but beyond this who were so soon to press over the Potomac no further ceremony was used."

and assure the permanent safety of the NationTheir arrival was rapidly succeeded by al Capital by an invasion of Virginia's “s& that of the Massachusetts Eighth, and the cred soil.”

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into the Davis

The position of Mary- , rayed against Abolitionism, The State welcomed
Maryland's Anoma-
lous Position.

land, for the four weeks and cling to the South: and
succeeding the attack on if she has not delegates

Confederacy.
the Massachusetts Sixth in the streets of Bal- with us now, she is in open defiance of Lincoln
timore, was anomalous. Professing loyalty, and his Government, and will soon be with
she still stood arrayed against the Govern- us even by revolution. The cause of Balti-
ment, and only ceased her opposition to the more is the cause of us all, from the Atlantic
passage of troops over her soil when oppo- to the Rio Grande. Her hands must be held
sition became useless. Governor Hicks was up, and triumph must be assured her.” The
at once anxious to preserve the peace and enthusiastic Vice-President had a basis of
the “neutrality" of his State ; and labored truth in his averments, as the “ Safety Bill"
earnestly, for a brief period, to restrain the introduced into the Legislature of the State
transit through Maryland of the forces and soon showed. Doubtless that bill was per-
supplies requisite to render Washington safe fected under his own eyes. But, he literally
—thus far submitting to the behests of the counted the chickens before hatching.'
pro-Southern faction in the State. The Gov- | Maryland was not with them to a man,'
ernor, and most of the men of influence in por, indeed, would she be able to secede,'
Maryland, were Unionists, but with such except by the miserable jugglery of a few
qualifications as rendered them, for a while, revolutionists. The Vice-President's regard
distrusted by the General Government- for “the cause" would not allow him to make
distrust eventually banished by the position a more correct statement than fell from his
afterwards assumed by Governor Hicks, of lips. It was wanted to "fire the Southern
open and unqualified support of the Ad-heart."
ministration.

The history of the thirty days succeeding As late as April 30th, Mr. Stephens pro- April 17th would fill a volume. Doubtless claimed the safety of Maryland for the South- it will be given to the world to interest the ern cause, saying: “But, the best of all is people of Maryland and all special students that Maryland-gallant little Maryland - of causes and effects bearing on the great right under the guns of Lincoln, and the rebellion. But, for the general reader, a threats of Blair to make it a Free State if brief chapter will suffice, showing how the the blood of the last white man has to be ship of State trimmed and veered to the gale shed in accomplishing it-has resolved, to a ere she righted and rode out her destiny, seman, to stand by the South. She will be ar- curely if not gallantly.

1

Governor Hicks' Pro

test.

General Butler's

Against the passage of the honor to inform your Excellency in regard to troops, either through or another insurrection against the laws of Maryland,

around Baltimore, the State I am here armed to maintain those laws, if your Exand city authorities protested, as we have cellency desires, and the peace of the United States, already recorded. Against the use of the against all disorderly persons whatsoever. I am route by way of Annapolis, the Governor endeavoring to save and not to destroy ; to obtain

means of transportation, so that I can vacate the likewise protested as follows:

Capital prior to the sitting of the Legislature, and “ EXECUTIVE CHAMBER, ANNAPOLIS,

}

not be under the painful necessity of incumbering Friday, April 23d, 1861.

your beautiful city while the Legislature is in sesTo Brigadier-General B. F. Butler :

sion. I have the honor to be, very respectfully, “Sır: Having, by virtue of the powers vested in

“Your Excellency's obedient servant, me by the Constitution of Maryland, summoned the

"(Signed) B. F. BUTLER, Legislature of the State to assemble on Friday, the

“Brigadier-General." 26th instant, and Annapolis being the place in

Annapolis was not vacated, nor the railwhich, according to law, it must assemble; and having been credibly informed that you have taken way released from Government control. The military possession of the Annapolis and Elk Ridge

outraged Legislature therefore assembled at Railroad, I deem it my duty to protest against this Frederick, (April 26th,) when the Governor step ; because, without at present assigning any detailed the recent history of affairs in a mes. other reason, I am informed that such occupation sage, from which we may quote : of said road will prevent the members of the Legis.

Believing it to be the de

Governor Hicks' His. lature from reaching this city.

sign of the Administration to

tory of Affairs. Very respectfully, yours,

pass over our soil troops for
“ (Signed)

THOMAS H. HICKS." the defense of the City of Washington, and fearing
In General Butler the that the passage of such troops would excite our

people and provoke a collision, I labored earnestly
Governor found both a
eply.

to induce the President to forego his purpose. I shrewd lawyer and an able waited upon him in person, and urged the impor. military commander. His reply was charac

tance of my request. I subsequently communicated teristic of both qualities :

with him and his Cabinet by special dispatches, en. “ HEADQUARTERS U. S. Militia,

treating an abandonment of his designs. To all my ANNAPOLIS, MD., April 23d, 1861.5

requests I could get but the reply that Washington To His Excellency Thomas H. Hicks, Governor of was threatened with attack; that the Government Maryland:

had resolved to defend it; that there was no other “ You are credibly informed that Į have taken way of obtaining troops than by passing them over the possession of the Annapolis and Elk Ridge Railroad. soil of Maryland, and that the military necessity of It might have escaped your notice, but at the offi- the case rendered it impossible for the Government cial meeting which was had between your Excel- to abandon its plans, much as it desired to avoid lency and the Mayor of Annapolis, and the Com- the dangers of a collision. * * On Sunday mittee of the Government and myself, as to the morning last I discovered that a detachment of landing of my troops, it was expressly stated as the troops, under command of Brigadier-General Benjareason why I should not land, that my troops could min F. Butler, had reached Annapolis in a steamer, not pass the railroad because the company had and had taken possession of the practice-ship Come taken up the rails, and they were private property. stitution, which, during that day, they succeeded in It is difficult to see how it can be, that if my troops getting outside of the harbor of Annapolis, where could not pass over the railroad one way, the mem- she now lies. After getting the ship off, the steambers of the Legislature could pass the other way. er lay outside the harbor, and was joined by an. I have taken possession for the purpose of prevent- other steamer having on board the Seventh Regiing the execution of the threats of the mob, as offi- ment, from New York city. Brigadier-General Butcially represented to me by the master of transpor- ler addressed me, asking for permission to land his tation of the railroad in this city, that if my troops forces. It will be seen from the correspondence passed over the railroad, the railroad should be de herewith submitted, that I refused my consent. stroyed.'

The Mayor of Amapolis also protested. But both “If the Government of the State had taken pos- steamers soon afterwards landed and put off their session of the road in any emergency, I should have troops. Subsequently other large bodies of troops long hesitated before entering upon it; but as I had | reached here in transports, and were landed. I was

}

PUBLIC INDIGNATION AGAINST

THE “SAFETY ACT."

119

Governor Hicks' His.

Act.

.

notified that the troops were our soil from being polluted with the blood of

to be marched to Washington. brethren." tory of Affairs.

They desired to without ob- Extraordinary pressure struction from our people, but they had orders to

The Public Safety

was brought to bear on the go to Washington, and were determined to obey Legislature, to induce it to those orders. In furtherance of their designs, they assume the front of revolution, either by ortook military possession of the Annapolis and Elk

dering a Convention or hy itself adopting an Ridge Railroad, in regard to which act I forwarded

Ordinance of Secession. Neither step was to Brigadier-General Butler the protest, and received the reply here with submitted. On Wednesday taken ; but the Governor's “honest and earnmorning the two detachments landed, and took up est conviction" of neutrality was embodied the line of march for Washington. The people of in an act providing for the public safety, apAnnapolis, though greatly exasperated, acting un- pointing a Board of Seven, who were to have der counsel of the most prudent citizens, refrained “full power and authority to provide for the from molesting or obstructing the passage of troops better organization, arming and regulation through the city. Seriously impressed with the of the militia.” They were clothed with alcondition of affairs, and anxious to avoid a repeti- most supreme authority, being empowered to tion of events similar to those which had transpired remove or appoint any officer above the rank in Baltimore, I deemed it my duty to make another of Captain, giving their commission in the appeal at Washington. Accordingly, I sent a spe.

name and under the great seal of the State cial messenger with a dispatch to the Administra

to adopt any measures, or pursue any tion, advising that no more troops be sent through

course to provide for the safety, peace and Maryland ; that the troops at Annapolis be sent elsewhere, and urging that a truce be offered with a

defense of the State—to fill all vacancies in view of a peaceful settlement of existing difficulties their own Board, &c., &c. The oath of office by mediation. I suggested that Lord Lyons, the was prescribed. Instead of swearing fealty British Minister, be requested to act as mediator to the General Government, the Board was to between the contending parties. The result of the swear not to proscribe any officer “ for his po. mission will be seen from the correspondence here. litical opinion.” The act named the gentlewith submitted. These events have satisfied me men to constitute the Board, comprising six that the War Department has concluded to make rank Secessionists and Governor Hicks. This Annapolis the point for landing troops, and has re- insidious scheme was more fully interpreted solved to open and maintain communication be- by the report of the Committee on Federal tween this place and Washington.

Relations, which arraigned the General Gov“ I honestly and most earnestly entertain the conviction that the only safety of Maryland lies in pre- ernment in charges of acts of tyranny and serving a neutral position between our brethren of subjugation, and resolving that a committee the North and of the South. We have violated no should wait upon the authorities at Washingright of either section. We have been loyal to the ton to learn what course the President intendUnion. The unhappy contest between the two sec-ed to pursue, &c. Governor Hicks thus found tions has not been commenced or encouraged by himself virtually superseded, and the reign us, although we have suffered from it in part. The of the revolutionists about to commence. impending war has not come by any act or any

But the people came to wish of ours. We have done all we could to the rescue; and, by their

The Public Indigna. avert it. We have hoped that Maryland and

loudly and menacingly utother Border Slave States, by their conservative position and love for the Union, might have tered protests, fairly scared the conspirators acted as mediators between the extremes of both from their game. A very large meeting of sections, and thus have prevented the terrible evils the leading citizens of Baltimore convened of a prolonged civil war. Entertaining these views, Saturday evening, May 4th, to publicly exI cannot counsel Maryland to take sides against press the general indignation felt at the effort the General Government until it shall commit out to subvert the State Government. Resolutions rages on us which would justify us in resisting were passed as follows: its authority. As a consequence, I can give no Resolved, That the Convention, in the name of other counsel than that we shall array our- the order-loving people of Baltimore, do solemnly selves for Union and peace, and thus preserve protest against the attempt now making in the Legis

tion at the Act.

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