Page images

for the return of that little to their own hands at very short intervals. While the people retain their virtue and vigilance, no administration, by any extreme wickedness or folly, can very seriously injure the Government in the short space of four years.

My countrymen, one and all, think calmly and well upon this whole subject. Nothing valuable can be lost by taking time.

If there be an object to hurry any of you, in hot haste, to a step which you would never take deliberately, that object will be frustrated by taking time; but no good object can be frustrated by it.

Such of you as are now dissatisfied still have the old Constitution unimpaired, and on the sensitive point, the laws of your own framing under it; while the new adininistration will have no immediate power, if it would, to change either.

If it were admitted that you who are dissatisfied hold the right side in the dispute, there is still no single reason for precipitate action. Intelligence, patriotism, Christianity, and a firm reliance on Him who has never yet forsaken this favored land, are still competent to adjust, in the best way, all our present difficulties.

In your hands, my dissatisfied fellow-countrymen, and not in mine, is the momentous issue of civil war. The government will not assail you.

[ocr errors]

You can have no conflict without being yourselves the aggressors. You have no oath registered in Heaven to destroy the government; while I shall have the most solemn one to "preserve, protect, and defend it.

I am loath to close. We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection.

The mystic cords of memory, stretching from every battle-field and patriot grave to every living heart and hearthstone all over this broad land, will yet swell the chorus of the Union, when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.



The receipts into the Treasury during the fiscal year ending June 30, 1859, were as follows: From Customs..

$49,565,824 38 From Public Lands.

1,756,687 30 From Miscellaneous Sources.

2,082,559 33 From Treasury Notes..

9,667,400 00 From Loans...

18,620,000 00

Aggregate resources for the year ending
June 30, 1859 ...

-$88,090,787 11
Which amount was expended as follows:
Civil, Foreign and Miscellan's. . $23,635,820 94
Interior (Indians and Pensions), 4,753,972 60
War Department.

23, 243,822 38 Navy Department,

14, 712, 610 21 Public Debt...

17,405,285 44

Total expenses for the year. ....

$83,751,511 57 Balance in Treasury July 1, 1859

4,389,275 54 The receipts into the Treasury during the fiscal year ending June 30, 1865, was $1,898,532,533 24, of which were received: From loans applied to expenses.

$864,863,499 17 From loans applied to Public Debt.

607,361,241 68 From Internal Revenue.

209, 464,215 25 Expenditures for the year ...

$1,897,674, 224 09 War Department charged with.

1,031, 323, 360 79 Balance in Treasury July 1, 1865. .

858,309 15 Total increase of Public Debt during the year...

941,902,637 04

[ocr errors]



MARCH 4, 1865.

FELLOW-COUNTRYMEN : At this second appearing to take the onth of the Presidential office, there is less occasion for an extended address than there was at the first. Then a statement, somewhat in detail, of a course to be pursued seemed very fitting and proper. Now, at the expiration of four years, during which public declarations have been constantly called forth on every point and phase of the great contest which still absorbs the attention and engrosses the energies of the nation, little that is new could be presented.

The progress of our arms, upon which all else chiefly depends, is as well known to the public as to myself, and it is, I trust reasonably satisfactory and encouraging to all. With high hope for the future, no prediction in regard to it is ventured.

On the occasion corresponding to this four years ago, all thoughts were anxiously directed to an impending civil war. All dreaded it; all sought to avoid it. While the inaugural address was being delivered from this place, devoted altogether to saving the Union without war, insurgent agents were in the city seeking to destroy it without war-seeking to dissolve the Union and divide the effects by negotiation. Both parties deprecated war, but one of them would make war rather than let the nation survive; and the other would rather accept war than let it perish, and the war came.

One-eighth of the whole population were colored slaves, not distributed generally over the Union, but localized in the Southern part of it. These slaves constituted a peculiar and powerful interest. All knew that this interest was somehow the cause of

To strengthen, perpetuate, and extend this interest, was the object for which the insurgents would rend the Union even by war, while the Government claimed no right to do more than to restrict the territorial enlargement of it.

Neither party expected for the war the magnitude or the duration which it has already attained. Neither anticipated that the cause of the conflict might cease with, or even before the conflict itself should

the war.

Each looked for an easier tri


« PreviousContinue »