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LTHOUGH the Rappahannock was again flowing full
and turbulent between the Army of the Potomac and the Army of Northern Virginia, and Hooker was in full communication with ample supplies, his forces were in a perilous situation. The enlistments of his nine months' and two years' men, to the number of almost
thirty thousand, were expiring; and at the close of May, his effective army did not exceed eighty-eight thousand
* 1868. His cavalry had been reduced by one-third since March, and in every way his army was sadly weakened. Lee, meanwhile, had been re-enforced by the remainder of Longstreet's troops, which had been brought up from before the fortifications at Suffolk,' and the chief had reorganized his army into three corps, commanded respectively by Longstreet, A. P. Hill, and Ewell, all able leaders, and each bearing the commission of Lieutenant-General.
Recent events had greatly inspirited the Confederates, and given a buoyant tone to the feelings of the army. Richmond seemed secure from harm for at least a year to come. Its prisons (especially the Libby, which became both famous and infamous during the war) were crowded with captives.
1 See page 42.
? Probably at no time during the war was the Confederate army more complete in numbers, equipment, and materials, than at the middle of June, 1863, when, according to the most careful estimates made from the Confederate official returns, there were at least 500,000 men on the rolls, and more than 300,000 “ present, and fit for dnty.” Full one-half of the white men of the Confederacy, eligible to military duty, were then enrolled for active service, while a large proportion of the other half were in the civil and military service in other capacities. Doubtless at least seven-tenths of the white adults were then in public service, while a large number of slaves were employed in various labors, such as working on fortifications, as teamsters, et cetera, for the cause of the conspirators. The following is the form of the voucher held by the Government” as the employer of slaves for such purposes :
“We, the subscribers, acknowledge to have received of John B. Stannard, First Corps of Engineers, the sums set opposite our names, respectively, being in full for the services of our slaves at Drewry's Bluff, during the months of March and April, 1863, having signed duplicate receipts.
FROM WHOM HIRED.
J. G. Woodfire. William E. Martin.
AMOUNT FOR AMOUNT
Joseph G, Woodfire.
1975 39 46 W. E. Martin.
“JOHN B. STANNARD.”
The above was copied from one of several in possession of the writer, taken from hundreds found in Richmond after the evacuation, and showing that thousands of slaves were employed on the fortifications in different parts of the Confederacy.
BRITISH INTERFERENCE DESIRED.
Charleston was defiant, and with reason. Vicksburg and Port Hudson, on the Mississippi, though seriously menaced, seemed impregnable against any force Grant and Banks might array before them; and the appeals of John
The friends of the Confederates in Europe encouraged the latter with promises of aid. They were elated by the National disaster at Chancellorsville, and desires for the acknowledgment of the independence of the “Confederate States” were again strong and active. In England public movements in favor of the rebels were then prominent, and these culminated in the spring of 1864 in the formation of a “ Southern Independence Association,” with a British peer (Lord Wharncliffe) as President, and a membership composed of powerful representatives of the Church, State, and Trade. But the British Government wisely hesitated; and notwithstanding
1 This was a large store and warehouse belonging to a man named Libby, who, it is said, was a friend of the Union, and the conspirators gladly ordered his property to be used for public purposes. It stands on the corner of Carey and Nineteenth Streets.
2 See page 615, volume II.
3 On the 26th of May a great open-air meeting was held at Sheffield, in England, at which Mr. Roebuck, M. P., was the chief speaker. The object of the meeting was to urge the British Government to recognize the independence of the Confederate States. On this occasion the following resolution, offered by the Rev. Mr. Hopp, was adopted by an immense majority:" " Resolved, That in the opinion of this meeting, the government of this country would act wisely, both for the interests of England and those of the world, were they immediately to enter into negotiations with the great powers of Europe, for the purpose of obtaining the acknowledgment by them of the independence of the Confederate States of North America."
4 This association was formed in Manchester in April, 1864, and the announcement of its organization, together with a list of its officers and members, was published in the Manchester Guardian on the 9th of that month Nearly nine hundred names appeared in the list, representing the highest and most influential classes, in England-members of the House of Lords, and of the House of Commons, not a few; baronets, clergymen, lawyers, magistrates, and merchants, prominent in all parts of the country, and representing immense wealth and social and political power. Of conrse the funds at the disposal of that association were immense, and no one doubts that these were used without stint in furnishing the Confederate armies, through blockade runners, with large supplies of clothing, arms, and munitions of war, and so prolonged the bloody strife. Collectively, these men were, in one sense, the British Government, for they represented the ruling classes, and, as such. culminated dence leand a mer
LORD LYONS AND THE PEACE FACTION.
t Hudson, on
against a seals of Jobs
« Nov., 1862
leaders of the Peace Faction in the city of New York had, six months
latter with Chancellors nce of the
were professedly neutral; as individuals, acting as members of a private association, they were the British Government, making deadly war on the United States. Every right-minded Englishman condemned their iniquity, and none more keenly and effectively than the eminent Professor Goldwin Smith, in a Letter to a Whig member of the “ Southern Independence Association," in which he said at the beginning: “Your association wishes this country to lend assistance to the slave-holders of the Southern States, in their attempt to effect a disruption of the American commonwealth, and to establish an independent power, having, as they declare, slavery for its corner-stone. I am one of those who are convinced that, in doing so, she would commit a great folly and a still greater crime, the consequences of which would, in the end, fall on her own head."
1 In the darkest hour of the war for the life of the Republic, when the loyal people of the country were despondent because of reverses suffered by their armies in the field during the summer and autumn of 1862, Lord Lyons, on his arrival in New York from a visit to England, found, he says, the “ Conservative leaders" exulting in the success of the Opposition in the State, by whom Horatio Seymour had been elected Governor by a large majority. They felt assurance that they would henceforth have strength sufficient to check the government in its vigorous prosecution of the war, and believed that the President would heed the voice of warning given in the late elections. (See page 19.) “On the following morning, however," his lordship said, "intelligence arrived from Washington which dashed the rising hopes of the Conservatives," as the Democrats called themselves. It was announced that General McClellan, who " had been regarded as the representative of conservative principles in the army," had been superseded in command of the army, and suspended from active service. This was regarded as an evidence of the determination of the President to push straight forward in the course he had adopted for the suppression of the rebellion; and his lordship said that the “irritation of the Conservatives," scemed “to be not unmixed with consternation and despondency.” “Several leaders of the Democratic party,” he said, “sought interviews with me, both before and after the arrival of the intelligence of General McClellan's dismissal. The subject uppermost in their minds, while they were speaking to me, was naturally that of foreign mediation between the North and the South. Many of them seemed to think that this mediation must come at last, but they appeared to be very much afraid of its coming too soon. It was evident that they apprehended that a premature proposal of a foreign intervention would afford the Radical party a means of reviving the violent war spirit, and thus defeat their peaceful plans." Then they laid before his lordship "the plans and hopes of the Conservative party. At the bottom, I thought," continues his lordship, “I perceived a desire to put an end to the war, even at the risk of losing the Southern States altogether; but it was plain that it was not thought prudent to avow this desire. Indeed, some hints of it, dropped before the elections, were so ill received, that a strong declaration in the contrary sense was deemed necessary by the Democratic leaders. At the present moment, therefore, the chiefs of the Conservative party call loudly for a more vigorous prosecution of the war, and reproach the government with slackness as well as a want of success in its military measures." They expressed themselves determined to stand by “the South" in perpetuating slavery, and if their party should, as they hoped, speedily acquire the control of public affairs, "they would be disposed to accept an offer of mediation, if it appeared to be the only means of putting a stop to hostilities.” They would prefer to have such proposition come from the great European powers conjointly, and Great Britain to appear as little prominent as possible.-Dispatch of Lord Lyons to Lord John Russell, November 17, 1862.
2 In the autumn of 1862, Pope Pius tho Ninth addressed a letter to the Archbishops of New York and New Orleans, enjoining them to employ their prayers and influence for the restoration of peace. These were publisbed, and on the 23d of September, 1963, Jefferson Davis, in his official capacity, addressed a letter to “The Most Venerable Chief of the Holy See, and Sovereign Pontiff of the Roman Catholic Church," thanking him, in his own name and that of the Confederate States, for his Christian charity and love," declaring that they then were and ever had been earnestly desirous that the “ wicked war should cease." To this the Pope replied on the 3d of December, in a letter “ To the Illustrious and Honorable Jefferson Davis, President of the Confederate States of America," expressing his gratification that Davis appreciated his letter to the archbishops, and to recognize that he and his people were animated by the same desire as himself " for peace and tranquillity.” This was the only official recognition the Chief Conspirator ever received by the head of any Government.
35 a friend to ands on the
ch Mr. Borbeck to Tecuci br the Bert ting, the quiet world, were of optsiting
e its orants on the is influenta maets ciety * immens
immens, 233 blockade rife. Collection
NAPOLEON, MEXICO, AND THE CONFEDERATES.
spirators were the secret allies of the Emperor, it being understood that so soon as he should obtain a firm footing in Mexico he should, for valuable commercial considerations agreed upon, acknowledge the independence of the Confederate States, and uphold it by force of arms if necessary; it also being understood that the Government which Davis and his fellow-conspirators were to establish at the close of hostilities, should in nowise offend Napoleon's ideas of imperialism. Monarchical titles, distinctions, and privileges, were to prevail
. The slave-holding class were to be the rulers, and the great mass of the people were to be subordinated to the interests of that oligarchy. Therefore the triumphal march of the French invaders toward the Mexican capital, in the spring of 1863, was hailed with delight by the authorities at Richmond.' To them, and to the deluded people of the Confederate States, who did not penetrate the dark designs of the leaders, against their liberties, the skies never seemed brighter with promises of speedy success for their cause, and the establishment of a permanent empire, with slavery for its corner-stone. For in addition to the positive victory at
? Chancellorsville, the increase of Lee's forces, and the evident demoralization, for the moment, of the Army of the Potomac, the impression was universal in the Confederacy that the Peace Faction in the Free-labor States was a true exponent of the sentiments of the Opposition, and that a great majority of the people were eagerly awaiting an opportunity for revolting against the Government, because of its decided emancipation policy, its threat of conscription, the increase in the prices of food and fabrics, and the plain appari
i Soon after the late civil war broke out, England, France, and Spain, entered into negotiations for a triple alliance, ostensibly for the purpose of compelling Mexico to pay its debts due to citizens of those countries, or punishing it for wrongs inflicted on those citizens. The treaty was signed on the 21st of October, 1861. Diplomatic relations with Mexico were broken off by those powers, and each ally sent a fleet with troops to the Gulf of Mexico, numbering in all 61 vessels and 35,000 men. They appeared off Vera Cruz on the Sth of December, 1861, where they landed without inuch difficulty, the commanders assuring the Mexicans that there was no intention to interfere with their form of government, or to abridge their liberties. It was soon discov. ered by the representatives of Great Britain and Spain that the French Emperor was playing falsely and selfishly in the inatter, and in the spring of 1862 the British and Spanish troops left Mexico and returned home.
The real designs of Louis Napoleon were now made apparent. His political design was to arrest the march of empire southward on the part of the United States. His religious design was to assist the Church party in Mexico, which had been defeated in 1857, in a recovery of its power, that the Roman Catholic Church might have undisputed swny in Central America. In a letter to General Prim, the Spanish commander, dated July 3, 156-, the Emperor, after saying that the United States fed the factories of Europe with cotton, and asserting that it was not the interest of European Governments to have it hold dominion over the Gulf of Mexico, the Antilles, and the adjacent continent, he declared that if, with the assistance of France, Mexico should have ha stable Government," that is, a monarchy, “ we shall have restored to the Latin race upon the opposite side of the ocean its strength and its prestige; we shall have guaranteed, then, security to our colonies in the Antilles, and to those of Spain; we shall have established our beneficent influence in the center of America ; and this intluence, by creating immense openings to our commerce, will procure to us the matter indispensubie to our industry."
Louis Napoleon supposed the power of the United States to be broken by the rebellion and civil war, and that he might, with impunity, carry out his designs against republican institutions in the New World, and establish a dependency of France in the fertile, cotton-growing regions of Central America. His troops were re-enforced after the two allies withdrew. They marched upon and seized the capital, and then, in accordance with a previous arrangement made with leaders of the Church party, the Austrian Archduke Maximilian was chosen Einperor of Mexico by a ridiculous minority of the people, known as the “ Notables," and placed on a throne. This movement was offensive to the people of the United States, for they saw in it not only an outrage upon a sister republic, but a menace of their own. No diplomatic intercourse was held by them with Maximilian , and when the civil war was closed, in 1965, and it was seen that our Government was more powerful than ever, Louis Napoleon, trembling with alarm, heeded its warning to withdraw his forces, at the peril of forcible espulsion by our troops. He was mortified and humbled, and, with a perfidy unparalleled in the history of rulers, he abandoned his dupe, Maximilian, and left him to struggle on against the patriots fighting for their liberties under the direction of their President, Benito Juarez, until the “ Emperor” was finally captured and shot, leaving his poor wife, the “ Empress” Carlotta, a hopeless lunatic in her home in Austria.
? For a year the subject of a seal for the Confederate States had been before the “ Congress " at Richmond, and on the 27th of April, 1863, the Senate," in which action upon the subject originated, amended a resolution
REVOLUTIONS IN THE NORTH EXPECTED.
tion of an enormous and rapidly accumulating National debt. It was believed that a vigorous invasion of Maryland and Pennsylvania again would inaugurate a revolution in the Free-labor States, which would lead to a practical coalition between the Confederates and their political friends in the North, and a speedy peace on terms dictated, by the servants of Jefferson Davis, on the banks of the Susquehanna and the Ohio. Back of all this was a powerful and perhaps a prime motive for such an invasion, in the lack of subsistence for Lee's army, then to be obtained, it was believed, most speedily and abundantly from the herds and flocks and store-houses of more fruitful Maryland and Pennsylvania. These considerations made the Confederate leaders audacious, and impelled them to attempt audacious achievements. At the time we are considering, the Army of Northern Virginia was in a condition of strength and morale, General Longstreet said, “to undertake any thing.'
Impelled by false notions of the temper of a greater portion of the people of the Free-labor States, and the real resources and strength of the Government, the conspirators ordered Lee to invade Maryland and Pennsylvania again. So early as the 28th of May Hooker suspected such movement, and so informed the Secretary of War. Earlier than this a benevolent citizen,' who had been much in the army for the purpose of comforting the sick and wounded, and had rare opportunities for obtaining information from Confederate councils, had warned the authorities at Washington, Baltimore, and Harrisburg, of the impending danger; but these were slow to believe thal
CONFEDERATE STATES OF AME
of the House of Representatives," and decided that the device for the seal should be as follows: "A device
1 To this necessity the Richmond journals pointed at that
? Campaigns of the Army of the Potomac, note 1, page 810.
3 The informer was Clement C. Barclay, of Philadelphia, who gave the warning so early as the 20th of May, a notice of which, in a letter from Baltimore, was published in The Inquirer, of Philadelphia. “I am authorized to say," said the writer, “that Mr. Barclay has been in close counsel with our highest authorities here, and is more than ever convinced of the imperious necessity devolving on our people throughout the whole land to awake at once to a realizing sense of preparing to counteract the contingency of an invasion of Maryland and Pennsylvania by the rebel hordes. Mr. Barclay returns to Washington on important business, after which he proceeds immediately to Harrisburg, to confer with Governor Curtin upon matters of weighty moment, touching affairs in Pennsylvania. He is fully alive to the importance of his mission, and of his State
• This is copied from a rude wood-cut, at the head of a certificate of honorary directorship of a Confederate Association for the Reliej of Msized Soldiere. The object of that association was to supply artificial limbs gratuitously to soldiers who had lost them. A subscrip the annually of $10 constituted a member; of $300, a life member; and of $1,000, an honorary director.