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Extra Session of Congress.
Call for Troops.
President of the United States, in virtue of the power in me vested by the Constitution and the laws, have thought fit to call forth, and hereby do call forth, the militia of the several States of the Union to the aggregate number of seventy-five thousand, in order to suppress said combinations and to cause the laws to be duly executed.
"The details for this object will be immediately communicated to the State authorities through the War Department. I appeal to all loyal citizens to favor, facilitate, and aid this effort to maintain the honor, the integrity, and existence of our national Union, and the perpetuity of popular government, and to redress wrongs already long enough endured. I deem it proper to say that the first service assigned to the forces hereby called forth, will probably be to repossess the forts, places, and property which have been seized from the Union; and in every event the utmost care will be observed, consistently with the objects aforesaid, to avoid any devastation, any destruction of, or interference with property, or any disturbance of peaceful citizens of any part of the country; and I hereby command the persons composing the combinations aforesaid, to disperse and retire peaceably to their respective abodes, within twenty days from this date.
"Deeming that the present condition of public affairs presents an extraordinary occasion, I do hereby, in virtue of the power in me vested by the Constitution, convene both Houses of Congress. The Senators and Representatives are, therefore, summoned to assemble at their respective chambers at twelve o'clock, noon, on Thursday, the fourth day of July next, then and there to consider and determine such measures as, in their wisdom, the public safety and interest may seem to demand.
"In witness whereof, I have hereunto set my hand, and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed.
"Done at the City of Washington, this fifteenth day of April, in the year of our Lord, one thousand eight hundred
Response to the Call.
Border Slave States.
First Blood Sned.
and sixty-one, and of the independence of the United States the eighty-fifth.
"By the President:
"WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State."
In response to this proclamation enthusiastic public meetings were held throughout the loyal States; all party lines seemed obliterated; enlistments were almost universal; Washington, which was at one time in imminent danger, was soon considered amply defended. The majority entertained no doubt that with the force summoned the rebellion would be nipped in the bud; the more sagacious minority shook their heads, and wished that a million of men had been asked.
An excellent opportunity was afforded to the border slave States for pronouncing their election-whether to stand by the Government, or, practically, to furnish aid and comfort to the rebels. Magoffin, Governor of Kentucky, was soon heard from: "Kentucky will furnish no troops," said he, "for the wicked purpose of subduing her sister Southern States." Letcher, of Virginia: "The militia of Virginia will not be furnished to the powers at Washington for any such case or purpose as they have in view;" and on the 17th, the State was dragooned into passing, in secret, an ordinance of secession, and immediately commenced those warlike preparations, whose evil fruits she was destined so soon and in so much sorrow to reap. The Executives of Tennessee and North Carolina refused compliance; and those States, together with Arkansas, went over to the "Confederacy."
How was the call for troops received by the rebel conclave at Montgomery? They laughed.
The first blood shed in the war was in the streets of Baltimore, on the 19th of April. Massachusetts troops, passing through that city for the defence of the common capitol, were attacked by a mob, instigated and encouraged by men of
Letter to Maryland Authorities.
property and social standing. The State hung trembling in the balance between loyalty and treason. Had its geographical position been other than it was, it would have undeniably embraced the fortune of the South. Its Governor was, however, strongly inclined to support the Government, although the peculiar circumstances in which he was placed called for peculiar tact and dexterity in management. It was seriously proposed that no more troops should be sent through Balti
The day following this attack, the President sent the following letter in reply to a communication broaching this modest proposition:
"Washington, April 20th, 1861. "GOVERNOR HICKS AND MAYOR BROWN:
“GENTLEMEN :—Your letter by Messrs. Bond, Dobbin, and Brune, is received. I tender you both my sincere thanks for your efforts to keep the peace in the trying situation in which you are placed. For the future, troops must be brought here, but I make no point of bringing them through Baltimore.
"Without any military knowledge myself, of course I must leave details to General Scott. He hastily said this morning in presence of those gentlemen, Baltimore, and not through it.'
March them around
"I sincerely hope the General, on fuller reflection, will consider this practical and proper, and that you will not object to it. By this a collision of the people of Baltimore with the troops will be avoided, unless they go out of the way to seek it. I hope you will exert your influence to prevent this. Now and ever, I shall do all in my power for peace, consistently with the maintenance of government.
"Your obedient servant,
To a delegation of rebel sympathizers from the same State, who demanded a cessation of hostilities until Congress
Reply to Maryland Rebels.
should assemble, and accompanied their demand with the statement that seventy-five thousand Marylanders would dispute the passage of any more United States troops over the soil of that State, he quietly remarked that he presumed there was room enough in the State to bury that number, and declined to accede to their proposal. The Maryland imbroglio was, after no great time, adjusted, and ample precautions taken to guard against any future trouble in that quarter.
On the 19th of April, every port of the States in rebellion was declared blockaded by the following proclamation :
"WHEREAS, An insurrection against the Government of the United States has broken out in the States of South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Florida, Mississippi, Louisiana, ard Texas, and the laws of the United States for the collection of the revenue can not be efficiently executed therein conformably to that provision of the Constitution which requires duties to be uniform throughout the United States:
"AND WHEREAS, A combination of persons, engaged in such insurrection, have threatened to grant pretended letters of marque to authorize the bearers thereof to commit assaults on the lives, vessels, and property of good citizens of the country lawfully engaged in commerce on the high seas, and in waters of the United States:
"AND WHEREAS, An Executive Proclamation has already been issued, requiring the persons engaged in these disorderly proceedings to desist therefrom, calling out a militia force for the purpose of repressing the same, and convening Congress in extraordinary session to deliberate and determine thereon:
"Now, therefore, I, Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States, with a view to the same purposes before mentioned, and to the protection of the public peace, and the lives and property of quiet and orderly citizens pursuing their lawful occupations, until Congress shall have assembled and deliberated on the said unlawful proceedings, or until
the same shall have ceased, have further deemed it advisable to set on foot a blockade of the ports within the States aforesaid, in pursuance of the laws of the United States, and of the laws of nations in such cases provided. For this purpose a competent force will be posted so as to prevent entrance and exit of vessels from the ports aforesaid. If, therefore, with a view to violate such blockade, a vessel shall approach, or shall attempt to leave any of the said ports, she will be duly warned by the commander of one of the blockading vessels, who will indorse on her register the fact and date of such warning; and if the same vessel shall again attempt to enter or leave the blockaded port, she will be captured and sent to the nearest convenient port, for such proceedings against her and her cargo as prize, as may be deemed advisable.
"And I hereby proclaim and declare, that if any person, under the pretended authority of said States, or under any other pretence, shall molest a vessel of the United States, or the persons or cargo on board of her, such person will be held amenable to the laws of the United States for the prevention and punishment of piracy.
"By the President:
"WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State."
On the 27th of April, the following additional proclamation was issued:
"WHEREAS, For the reasons assigned in my proclamation of the 19th instant, a blockade of the ports of the States of South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas was ordered to be established; AND WHEREAS, since that date public property of the United States has been seized, the collection of the revenue obstructed, and duly commissioned officers of the United States, while en