« PreviousContinue »
second session, we shall note on a subse- of Rosecrans, under Pleasanton, was quent page.
operating in Price's rear. Although of no particular moment Pleasanton having reached Jefferson in its bearing on the final result of the city on the 8th of October, sent Gen. war, the invasion of Missouri, by the Sanborn, with all the available rebel Gen. Price, may here be placed cavalry force, in pursuit of the on record. Having gathered about 10,- invaders. Sanborn, with inferior pum000 men, Price reached Jacksonport, at bers, harassed the enemy and attacked the close of August, on his way to make them at Booneville, whence Price moved an inroad into and ravage that state in to Marshall and Lexington, freely plun. which he had already done vast mis- dering by the way. Pleasanton, having chief. Rosecrans was in command in now efficiently organized his cavalry the department (p. 383), and in order force in four brigades, under Gens. to strengthen his force, Grant ordered Brown, McNeil, Sanborn, and Col. Gen. A. J. Smith with his command, Winslow, promptly took the offenand a cavalry force under Col. Winslow sive. Prior was driven from Lexington from Memphis, to join Rosecrans. This on the 20th, and two days after out of made his forces superior to those of Independence, where there was some Price, and, as Grant said, “no doubt severe fighting. The pursuit was vig
. was entertained he would be able to orously kept up to the Big Blue River check Price and drive him back, while at Byron's Ford, where Price was dethe forces under Gen. Steele, in Arkan. feated, with a loss of nearly all his artil. sas, would cut off his retreat.” Price lery and trains, and a large number of crossed the southern frontier by way of prisoners. Energetically pursued by Pocahontas and Poplar Bluff, and plun- Pleasanton, aided by Blunt's command dering the farmers of horses to mount from Kansas, Price was forced to make bis
men, and impressing all he could lay a hasty retreat with his broken and dishands upon, he prepared to strike at pirited forces into Northern Arkansas.
, the centre of the state.
Rosecrans, in November, congratulaOn the 26th of September, Price as- ted the army on its brilliant success saulted Pilot Knoh, where Gen. Ewing in this campaign; but the lieutenantwas in command, with a garrison of general, in bis report, expresses himself about 1,000 men. On the second day, rather tartly on the subject: “The Ewing evacuated the place and retreat- impunity with which Price was enabled ed, skirmishing along his march to Har- to roam over the state of Missouri for rison and thence to Rolla. Price moved a long time, and the incalculable misnorth to the Missouri River, and con- chief done by him, show to how little tinued up that river towards Kansas. purpose a superior force may be used. Gen. Curtis, who was in command in There is no reason why Gen. Rosecrans Kansas, immediately collected such should not have concentrated his forces, forces as were within reach to repel the and beaten and driven Price before the invasion of the state, while the cavalry latter reached Pilot Knob.”
REBEL BARBARITIES TO PRISONERS.
The sufferings of our men, who were they had received. A mass of testiprisoners in the hands of the rebels, had mony was collected concerning the barlong been known to be very great and barities practised at Richmond, at the trying; they have before been alluded Libby Prison, and more particularly in to (pp. 391, 406); but the actual extent the camp in its vicinity at Belle Isle. of the horrible exposure and destitution It is impossible to read their testimony to which the defenders of the country without a cold chill of horror, and an were subjected, was not at all appreci- oppressive sense of its being almost an ated, or even dreamed of, by the people impossibility that there should be in of the loyal states, until there was fur- human form, creatures so soulless, and nished incontestable, detailed evidence so like incarnate demons, as these rebel of the facts, from various sources, espe- agents and authorities proved themcially from the report of the United selves to be. We cannot go into deStates Sanitary Commission, in Septem- tails; the documents are before the ber of this year. This admirable organ- world; the projectors and willing in. ization which, since the beginning of struments in this devilish work are the war, had been engaged in the noble stamped with infamy of the deepest
, work of charity, in mitigating, as far as dye; and the reader must ponder the lay in their power, the sufferings and lesson which all this teaches. A paraanguish of war, among the sick, the graph or two at the close of the report wounded, and the dying, appointed a may not inaptly be quoted : committee of their body, in May, to in- “The immensity and variety of that quire into and investigate, patiently system of abuse to which our soldiers and fully, the truth of the rumors and are subjected are too general, too unistatements as to rebel cruelty and bar- form, and too simultaneous to be other. barity practised towards our unfortu- wise than the result of a great arrange. nate men who had fallen into the ene- ment. One prison station is like anmy's hands. Six gentlemen, of high other—one hospital resembles another ability and undoubted integrity, com- hospital. This has been made especiposed this committee, viz: Dr. Ellerslie ally apparent by intelligence that has Wallace, the Hon. J. I. Clark Hare, and reached the public just as this investithe Rev. Treadwell Walden, of Phila- gation is closing, and this report is delphia, and Dr. Valentine Mott, Dr. being written. The remote prison at Edward Delafield, and Gouverneur M. Tyler, Texas, sends out a tale of sufferWilkins, of New York. The commit- ing identical with that described in tee employed several months in their these pages. It was only a few weeks inquiry, visiting the hospitals where ago, that the streets of New Orleans the returned prisoners had been receiv- beheld a regiment of half starved and ed in Annapolis, Baltimore, and else half naked men, who had just been where, examining carefully into their released from that station. Still more condition, and taking the depositions of heart-rending is the later account, given officers and men as to the treatment in a memorial to the president, from Andersor ville, Georgia, and in the full shot by unrestrained and brutal guards; descripticn, verified on oath, of what despondent even to madness, idiocy and is now being suffered there by the im- suicide; sick of diseases (so congruous prisoned soldiers of our army. It would in character as to appear and spread appear to be Belle Isle five times en- like the plague), caused by the torrid larged, and tenfold intensified. An sun, by decaying food, by filth, by verenormous multitude of 35,000 men are min, by malaria, and by cold; removed crowded together in a square enclosure at the last moment, and by hundreds at or stockade of about twenty-five acres, a time, to hospitals corrupt as a sepulwith a noxious swamp at the centre, chre, there, with few remedies, little occupying one-fourth of the whole space. care and no sympathy, to die in wretchHere the prisoners suffer not only the edness and despair, not only among privations already mentioned, but others strangers, but among enemies too resentpeculiar to circumstances of a worse ful either to have pity or to show mercy. description. In this pestilential prison “These are positive facts. Tens of they are dying at the rate of 130 a day, thousands of helpless men have been on an average! The commissioners and are now being disabled and deallude to this station not as part of the stroyed by a process as certain as evidence taken by themselves, but as poison, and as cruel as the torture or an interesting, authentic, and corrobo- burning at the stake, because nearly as rative illustration of the point now agonizing and more prolonged. This under consideration.*
spectacle is daily beheld and allowed “It is the same story everywhere :- by the rebel government. No supposiprisoners of war treated worse than tion of negligence, or thoughtlessness, convicts, shut up either in suffocating or indifference, or accident, or ineffici- !! buildings, or in outdoor enclosures, ency, or destitution, or necessity, can without even the shelter that is pro- account for all this. So many and such vided for the beasts of the field; un- positive forms of abuse and wrong cansupplied with sufficient food; supplied not come from negative causes. The with food and water injurious and even conclusion is unavoidable, therefore, poisonous; compelled to live in such that 'these privations and sufferings' personal uncleanliness as to generate have been “designedly inflicted by the vermin; compelled to sleep on floors military and other authority of the often covered with human filth, or on rebel government, and cannot have ground saturated with it; compelled to been due to causes which such authorbreathe an air oppressed with an intol. ities could not control.'" * erable stench; hemmed in by a fatal dead-line and in hourly danger of being * Some mitigation of these unutterable, indescrib.
able sufferings was happily effected before the close of * In a supplement to the report is an account of the the year, the result of a correspondence between Gen. sufferings of our prisoners at Andersonville, Georgia, Lee and Gen. Grant, the rebel authorities taking the and the memorial and appeal, sent through one of initiative, by which it was agreed that either party their dumber exchanged, to the president of the Uni- might send to their prisoners of war such articles of ted States, under date of August, 1864.
necessity and comfort as might be desirable. This was
ATTEMPT TO FIRE NEW YORK CITY.
As we have before noted (p. 387), requiring, in any similar case, that the raids were threatened along our north- marauders be shot, and, if need be, that ern frontier by rebel sympathisers and they be pursued into Canada and traitors in the British dominions. Two brought to his headquarters for sumsmall steamers were burned on Lake mary execution. The president modiErie by a band of these ruffians, who fied the order, and the Canadian author. made their escape into Canada; * and ities re-arrested Young and several of in October, another band, about thirty his companions. in number, attacked the village of St. In furtherance of their vile purposes, Albans, Vermont, plundered the banks, the rebels made a deliberate attempt to stole all they could, and made off to set fire to the chief hotels and theatres, ward the Canada line. They were pur on the night of the 25th of November; sued, and, by the help of the Canadian but, providentially, the murderous atauthorities, twelve of them, beside a tempt was defeated. In speaking of fellow named Young, were arrested and this, Gen. Dix said, the next day: “If put in jail. Various delays occurred this attempt had succeeded, it would before a trial could be had; and then, have resulted in a frightful sacrifice of on the 13th of December, the Canadian property and life. The evidences of judge, Coursol, of Montreal, decided extensive combination, and other facts that the court had no jurisdiction, and disclosed to-day, show it to have been set the robbers and murderers at liberty. the work of rebel emissaries and agents. Such conduct stirred up great indigna. All such persons engaged in secret acts tion in the United States; Gen. Dix, of hostility here can only be regarded at New York, issued a stringent order, as spies, subject to martial law, and to
the penalty of death. If they are dea decided measure of relief pending the negotiation of the entangled question of a general exchange of tected, they will be immediately brought prisoners. Early in the following year, 1865, the ex before a court martial or military comchange of prisoners, on the part of the North, was
mission, and, if convicted, they will be placed in the hands of Gen. Grant, by whom arrangements were made and carried into effect for a general executed without the delay of a single exchange. (See p. 390.)
day.” * * The leader in this affair, John Y. Beall, a native of Virginia, was arrested, in December, by Mr. Young, * R. C. Kennedy, a Louisianian, one of the chief in. chief of the New York Metropolitan detective force.cendiaries, was arrested and tried by a military com. Beall was tried and convicted" as a spy and guerrillero,” | mission at Gen. Dix's headquarters. He was convicted and was hung on the 13th of February, 1865.
and hung on the 25th of March, 1865.
PEACE PROPOSITIONS: ACTION OF CONGRESS: INAUGURATION OF ABRAHAM LINCOLY.
Renewal of efforts to negotiate peace with the rebels – Mr. F. P. Blair goes to Richmond — His movements
The president's course Conference — Failure of any result – Another attempt — The president's letter to Gen. Grant -- The rebel statement — Davis's mortification – Lee appointed rebel commander-in-chief His urgent appeal — Rebel congress vote to arm the slaves and employ them as soldiers — Bitter necessity of the case — Last appeal of rebel congress — Second session of the Thirty-eighth Congress — Various
- The most important, the passing the Constitutional Amendment abolishing slavery — The amendment, as sent to the states - Action thereupon — The national debt at this date - Andrew Johnson's inaugural speech, as vice-president, on the 4th of March — Striking scene at Mr. Lincoln's inauguration His remarkable address in full — Reasons for hopefulness in the future.
In a previous chapter (p. 460), we ton, and communicating Davis's letter
| have given some account of the efforts to the president, Blair received, on the made to satisfy the longing desire for 18th of January, a reply, as follows:peace, and the fruitless results of such “Sir, you having shown me Mr. efforts. Despite the failure, in the sum Davis's letter to you, of the mer of 1864, there was a renewal of the 12th inst., you may say to him that I attempt to reach the same end, by the have constantly been, am now, and shall visit of Francis P. Blair, senior, to continue ready to receive any agent Richmond, in December. This gentle whom he, or any other influential ,
perman was allowed, by an order from the son now resisting the national authority, president, on the 26th of December, may informally send me, with a view of “to pass our lines, go south, and re- securing peace to the people of our turn,” but received no authority to common country.” Blair, thereupon, speak or act for the government, nor revisited Richmond, and Davis appointwas the president “informed of any-ed three persons, A. H. Stephens, J. A. thing he would say or do on his own Campbell, and R. M. T. Hunter, as account or otherwise." On his arrival commissioners 10 proceed to Washing. at Richmond, Mr. Blair had an inter- ton. On the 29th of January, these view with Jeff. Davis, and received agents of Davis reached our lines, and, from him a letter, dated January 12th, after some delays, arrived at Gen. in which he expressed himself desirous Grant's headquarters at City Point, to send a commissioner, or receive a where they met Major Eckert, whom commission, “ to enter into a conference the president had sent on his behalf. with a view to secure peace to the two An unsatisfactory interview was had, on countries.” On returning to Washing. the 1st of February, and matters would