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reserve, but excluding the troops to be left in the fortifications about Washington) into four army corps, to be commanded, according to seniority of rank, as follows:

First corps to consist of four divisions, and to be commanded by Major-General I. McDowell. Second corps to consist of three divisions, and to be commanded by Brigadier-General E. V. Sumner. Third corps to consist of three divisions, and to be commanded by BrigadierGeneral S. P. Heintzelman. Fourth corps to consist of three divisions, and to be commanded by Brigadier-General E. D. Keyes.

2. That the divisions now commanded by the officers above assigned to the commands of army corps shall be embraced in and form part of their respective corps.

3. The forces left for the defense of Washington will be placed in command of BrigadierGeneral James S. Wadsworth, who shall also be military governor of the District of Columbia.

4. That this order be executed with such promptness and despatch as not to delay the commencement of the operations already directed to be undertaken by the Army of the Potomac.

5. A fifth army corps, to be commanded by Major-General N. P. Banks, will be formed from his own and General Shields's (late General Lander's) divisions.

Abraham Lincoln.

President's General War Order No. 3.

MARCH 8, 1862. Ordered, That no change of the base of operations of the Army of the Potomac shall be made

without leaving in and about Washington such a force as in the opinion of the general-in-chief and the commanders of all the army corps shall leave said city entirely secure.

That no more than two army corps (about 50,000 troops) of said Army of the Potomac shall be moved en route for a new base of operations until the navigation of the Potomac from Washington to the Chesapeake Bay shall be freed from enemy's batteries and other obstructions, or until the President shall hereafter give express permission.

That any movement as aforesaid en route for a new base of operations which may be ordered by the general-in-chief, and which may be intended to move upon the Chesapeake Bay, shall begin to move upon the bay as early as the 18th day of March instant, and the general-in-chief shall be responsible that it so move as early as that day.

Ordered, That the army and navy co-operate in an immediate effort to capture the enemy's batteries upon the Potomac between Washington and the Chesapeake Bay.

A. Lincoln. Lorenzo Thomas, Adjutant-General.

President's Special War Order No. 3.

MARCH IT, 1862.

II Major-General McClellan having personally taken the field as the head of the Army of the Potomac, until otherwise ordered he is relieved from the command of the other military departments, he retaining command of the Department of the Potomac.

Ordered further, that the two departments now under the respective commands of Generals Halleck and Hunter, together with so much of that under General Buell as lies west of a north and south line indefinitely drawn through Knoxville, Tenn., be consolidated and designated the Department of the Mississippi, and that until otherwise ordered Major-General Halleck have command of said department.

Ordered also, that the country west of the Department of the Potomac and east of the Department of the Mississippi be a military department to be called the Mountain Department, and that the same be commanded by Major-General Frémont.

That all the commanders of departments, after the receipt of this order by them respectively, report severally and directly to the Secretary of War, and that prompt, full, and frequent reports will be expected of all and each of them.

Abraham Lincoln.

Order Taking Military Possession of Rail


On May 25, 1862, the President by authority of an act of Congress, issued through M. C. Meigs, Quartermaster-General, an ORDER TAKING MILITARY POSSESSION OF ALL RAILROADS in the United States, directing the railroad companies to be ready to transport troops and munitions of war to the exclusion of all other business.

Message to Congress Assuming Responsibility

for Acts of Secretary Cameron, for which He Had Been Censured by the House.

MAY 26, 1862. To the Senate and House of Representatives: The insurrection which is yet existing in the United States and aims at the overthrow of the Federal Constitution and the Union, was clandestinely prepared during the winter of 1860 and 1861, and assumed an open organization in the form of a treasonable provisional government at Montgomery, in Alabama, on the 18th day of February, 1861. On the 12th day of April, 1861, the insurgents committed the flagrant act of civil war by the bombardment and capture of Fort Sumter, which cut off the hope of immediate conciliation. Immediately afterward all the roads and avenues to this city were obstructed, and. the capital was put into the condition of a siege. The mails in every direction were stopped and the lines of telegraph cut off by the insurgents, and military and naval forces which had been called out by the government for the defense of Washington were prevented from reaching the city by organized and combined treasonable resistance in the State of Maryland. There was no adequate and effective organization for the public defense. Congress had indefinitely adjourned. There was no time to convene them. It became necessary for me to choose whether, using only the existing means, agencies, and processes which Congress had provided, I should let the government fall at once into ruin, or whether, availing myself of the broader powers

conferred by the Constitution in cases of insurrection, I would make an effort to save it with all its blessings for the present age and for posterity.

I thereupon summoned my constitutional advisers, the heads of all the departments, to meet on Sunday, the 21st day of April, 1861, at the office of the Navy Department; and then and there, with their unanimous concurrence, I directed that an armed revenue cutter should proceed to sea, to afford protection to the commercial marine and especially the California treasure-ships then on their way to this coast. I also directed the commandant of the navy-yard at Boston to purchase, or charter, and arm as quickly as possible, five steamships for purposes of public defense. I directed the commandant of the navy-yard at Philadelphia to purchase, or charter, and arm an equal number for the same purpose. I directed the commandant at New York to purchase, or charter, and arm an equal number. I directed Commander Gillis to purchase, or charter, and arm and put to sea two other vessels. Similar directions were given to Commodore Du Pont, with a view to the opening of passages by water to and from the capital. I directed the several officers to take the advice and obtain the aid and efficient services in the matter of his Excellency Edwin D. Morgan, the Governor of New York, or, in his absence, George D. Morgan, William M. Evarts, R. M. Blatchford, and Moses H. Grinnell, who were, by my direction, especially empowered by the Secretary of the Navy to act for his department in that crisis, in matters pertaining to the for

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