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part. General Frémont's proclamation as to confiscation of property and the liberation of slaves is purely political, and not within the range of military law or necessity. If a commanding general finds a necessity to seize the farm of a private owner, for a pasture, an encampment, or a fortification, he has the right to do so, and to so hold it as long as the necessity lasts; and this is within military law, because within military necessity. But to say the farm shall no longer belong to the owner or his heirs forever, and this as well when the farm is not needed for military purposes as when it is, is purely political, without the savor of military law about it. And the same is true of slaves. If the general needs them he can seize them and use them, but when the need is past, it is not for him to fix their permanent future condition. That must be settled according to laws made by law-makers, and not by military proclamations. The proclamation in the point in question is simply 'dictatorship. assumes that the general may do anything he pleasesconfiscate the lands and free the slaves of loyal people, as well as of disloyal ones. And going the whole figure, I have no doubt, would be more popular, with some thoughtless people, than that which has been done! But I cannot assume this reckless position, nor allow others to assume it on my responsibility.


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

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

"So much as to principle. Now as to policy. No doubt the thing was popular in some quarters, and would have been more so if it had been a general declaration of emancipation. The Kentucky legislature would not budge till that proclamation was modified; and General Anderson telegraphed me that on the news of General Frémont having actually issued deeds of manumission, a whole company of our volunteers threw down their arms and disbanded. I was so assured as to think it probable that the very arms we had furnished Kentucky would be turned against us. I think to lose Kentucky is nearly the same as to lose the whole game. Kentucky gone, we cannot hold Missouri, nor, as I think, Maryland. These all against us, and the job on our hands is too large for us. We would as well consent to separation at once, including the surrender of this capital.'

If it be objected that the President himself decreed military emancipation a year later, then it must be remembered that Frémont's proclamation differed in many essential particulars from the President's edict of January 1, 1863. By that time, also, the entirely changed conditions justified a complete change of policy; but, above all, the supreme reason of military necessity, upon which alone Mr. Lincoln based the constitutionality of his edict of freedom, was entirely wanting in the case of Frémont.

The harvest of popularity which Frémont evidently hoped to secure by his proclamation was soon blighted by a new military disaster. The Confederate forces which had been united in the battle of Wilson's Creek



quickly became disorganized through the disagreement of their leaders and the want of provisions and other military supplies, and mainly returned to Arkansas. and the Indian Territory, whence they had come. But General Price, with his Missouri contingent, gradually increased his followers, and as the Union retreat from Springfield to Rolla left the way open, began a northward march through the western part of the State to attack Colonel Mulligan, who, with about twentyeight hundred Federal troops, intrenched himself at Lexington on the Missouri River. Secession sympathy was strong along the line of his march, and Price gained adherents so rapidly that on September 18 he was able to invest Mulligan's position with a somewhat irregular army numbering about twenty thousand. After a two days' siege, the garrison was compelled to surrender, through the exhaustion of the supply of water in their cisterns. The victory won, Price again immediately retreated southward, losing his army almost as fast as he had collected it, made up, as it was, more in the spirit and quality of a sudden border foray than an organized campaign.

For this new loss, Frémont was subjected to a shower of fierce criticism, which this time he sought to disarm by ostentatious announcements of immediate activity. "I am taking the field myself," he telegraphed, "and hope to destroy the enemy either before or after the junction of forces under McCulloch." Four days after the surrender, the St. Louis newspapers printed his order organizing an army of five divisions. The document made a respectable show of force on paper, claiming an aggregate of nearly thirtynine thousand. In reality, however, being scattered and totally unprepared for the field, it possessed no such effective strength. For a month longer extrava

gant newspaper reports stimulated the public with the hope of substantial results from Frémont's intended campaign. Before the end of that time, however, President Lincoln, under growing apprehension, sent Secretary of War Cameron and the adjutant-general of the army to Missouri to make a personal investigation. Reaching Frémont's camp on October 13, they found the movement to be a mere forced, spasmodic display, without substantial strength, transportation, or coherent and feasible plan; and that at least two of the division commanders were without means to execute the orders they had received, and utterly without confidence in their leader, or knowledge of his intentions.

To give Frémont yet another chance, the Secretary of War withheld the President's order to relieve the general from command, which he had brought with him, on Frémont's insistence that a victory was really within his reach. When this hope also proved delusive, and suspicion was aroused that the general might be intending not only to deceive, but to defy the administration, President Lincoln sent the following letter by a special friend to General Curtis, commanding at St. Louis:

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



further orders. After, and not till after, the delivery to General Frémont, let the inclosure addressed to General Hunter be delivered to him."

The order of removal was delivered to Frémont on November 2. By that date he had reached Springfield, but had won no victory, fought no battle, and was not in the presence of the enemy. Two of his divisions were not yet even with him. Still laboring under the delusion, perhaps imposed on him by his scouts, his orders stated that the enemy was only a day's march distant, and advancing to attack him. The inclosure mentioned in the President's letter to Curtis was an order to General David Hunter to relieve Frémont. When he arrived and assumed command the scouts he sent forward found no enemy within reach, and no such contingency of battle or hope of victory as had been rumored and assumed.

Frémont's personal conduct in these disagreeable circumstances was entirely commendable. He took leave of the army in a short farewell order, couched in terms of perfect obedience to authority and courtesy to his successor, asking for him the same cordial support he had himself received. Nor did he by word or act justify the suspicions of insubordination for which some of his indiscreet adherents had given cause. Under the instructions President Lincoln had outlined in his order to Hunter, that general gave up the idea of indefinitely pursuing Price, and divided the army into two corps of observation, which were drawn back and posted, for the time being, at the two railroad termini of Rolla and Sedalia, to be recruited and prepared for further service.

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