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Saving the Union.
The Tide Turned,
bigh with difficulty, and we must rise with the occasion. As our case is new, so we must think anew, and act anew.
We must disinthrall ourselves, and then we shall save our country.
"Fellow-citizens, we can not escape history. We of this Congress and this Administration, will be remembered in spite of ourselves. No personal significance, or insignificance, can spare one or another of us. The fiery trial through which we pass, will light us down, in honor or dishonor, to the latest generation. We say we are for the Union. The world will not forget that we say this. We know how to save the Union. The world knows we do know how to save it. We—even we here—hold the power, and bear the responsibility. In giving freedom to the slave, we assure freedom to the free-honorable alike in what we give and what we preserve. We shall nobly save, or meanly lose, the last best hope of earth. Other means may succeed; this could not fail. The way is plain, peaceful, generous, just a way which, if followed, the world will forever applaud, and God must forever bless. Dec. 1, 1862.
THE TIDE TURNED.
Military Successes-Favorable Elections-Emancipation Policy-Letter to Manchester
(England) Workingmen-Proclamation for a National Fast-Le: ter to Erastus Corning Letter to a Committee on recalling Vallandigham.
It had been decreed by a kind Providence that the year 1863 was to mark a turn in the almost unbroken line of reverses which the Union army had experienced for some time previous.
True, Hooker, who had superseded Burnside in command of the Army of the Potomac, had been signally repulsed at Chancellorsville ; but this was more than compensated by the decided victory achieved by the same troops, under Meade, over the rebels at Gettysburg. Grant, by the capture of Vicksburg, and the surrender of Port Hudson, which was the inevitable result, had opened the Mississippi to the Gulf, and completely severed the bastard confederacy. We moreover secured East Tennessee, and by the victories of Lookout Mountain and Missionary Ridge, and the repulse of a rebel attempt to retake Knoxville, paved the way for an offensive movement into the vitals of Georgia.
The sober, second thought of the people was manifest. Vallandigham in Ohio, who for his treasonable practices had been tried by Burnside's order, convicted, and ordered South to bis friends, but who had been suffered to return via Canada, and was put forward as the exponent of “Democracy” in Obio, was shelved by some one hundred thousand majority. Pennsylvania, likewise, more than redeemed herself. In fact every loyal State—except New Jersey - showed decided majorities for the Administration.
In this election, be it remembered, the emancipation policy of the President had entered largely as an element of discussion ; and the results were the more gratifying as it established conclusively, that however unfavorable early indications might have been, the great pulse of the people beat in unison with freedom for man as man. If in a contest like that in which the nation was then engaged, all merely merce. nary considerations could be overlooked, deep-rooted prejudices mastered, and long withheld rights cheerfully granted, there would be, indeed, strong grounds to hope for the progress of our race.
At the beginning of the year, the President received a gratifying evidence of the appreciation in which his efforts for freedom were held, in a testimonial of sympathy and confi
Reply to Manchester Workingmen.
dence from the workingmen of Manchester, England; to which address he made the following reply:
"Executive Mansion, Washington, January 19, 1863. “ TO THE WORKINGMEN OF MANCHESTER :- I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of the address and resolutions which you sent me on the eve of the new year.
“When I came, on the 4th of March, 1861, through a free and constitutional election, to preside in the Government of the United States, the country was found at the verge of civil war.
Whatever might have been the cause, or whosesoever the fault, one duty, paramount to all others, was before me, namely, to maintain and preserve at once the Constitution and the integrity of the Federal Republic. A conscientious purpose to perform this duty is the key to all the measures of administration which have been, and to all which will hereafter be pursued. Under our frame of government and my official oath, I could not depart from this purpose if I would. It is not always in the power of governments to enlarge or restrict the scope of moral results which follow the policies that they may deem it necessary, for the public safety, from time to time to adopt.
“I have understood well that the duty of self-preservation rests solely with the American people. But I have, at the same time, been aware that the favor or disfavor of foreign nations might have a material influence in enlarging' and prolonging the struggle with disloyal men in which the country is engaged. A fair examination of history has seemed to authorize a belief that the past action and influences of the United States were generally regarded as having been beneficial toward mankind. I have, therefore, reckoned upon the forbearance of nations. Circumstances—to some of which you kindly allude-induced me especially to expect that, if justice and good faith should be practised by the United States, they would encounter no hostile influence on the part of Great Britain. It is now a pleasant duty to acknowledge
the demonstration you have given of your desire that a spirit of peace and amity toward this country may prevail in the councils of your Queen, who is respected and esteemed in your own country only more than she is by the kindred nation which has its home on this side of the Atlantic.
"I know, and deeply deplore, the sufferings which the workingmen at Manchester, and in all Europe, are called to endure in this crisis. It has been often and studiously represented that the attempt to overthrow this Government, wbich was built upon the foundation of human rights, and to substitute for it one which should rest exclusively on the basis of human slavery, was likely to obtain the favor of Europe. Through the action of our disloyal citizens, the workingmen of Europe have been subjected to severe trial, for the purpose of forcing their sanction to that attempt. Under these circumstances, I can not but regard your decisive utterances upon the question as an instance of sublime Christian heroism, which has not been surpassed in any age or in any country. It is indeed an energetic and reinspiring assurance of the inherent power of truth, and of the ultimate and universal triumph of justice, humanity and freedom. I do not doubt that the sentiments you have expressed will be sustained by your great nation; and, on the other hand, I base no hesitation in assuring you that they will excite admiration,.esteem, and the most reciprocal feelings of friendship among the American people. I hail this interchange of sentiment, therefore, as an augury that, whatever else may happen, whatever misfortune may befall your country or my. own, the peace and friendship which now exist between the two nations will be, as it shall be my desire to make them, perpetual.
ABRAHAM LINCOLN." On the 30th of March the following proclamation was issued in pursuance of a request to that effect from the Senate :
“WHEREAS, The Senate of the United States, devoutly
Proclamation for a Fast.
recognizing the supreme authority and just government of Almighty God in all the affairs of men and of nations, has hy a resolution requested the President to designate and set apart a day for National prayer and humiliation;
"AND WHEREAS, It is the duty of nations, as well as of men, to own their dependence upon the overruling power of God, to confess their sins and transgressions in humble sorrow, yet with assured hope that genuine repentance will lead to mercy and pardon, and to recognize the sublime truth announced in the Holy Scriptures, and proven by all history, that those nations only are blessed whose God is the Lord ;
"And, insomuch as we know that, by his Divine law, nations, like individuals, are subjected to punishments and chastisements in this world, may we not justly fear that the awful calamity of civil war, which now desolates the land, may be but a punishment inflicted upon us for our presumptuous sins, to the needful end of our National reformation as a whole people? We have been the recipients of the choicest bounties of Heaven. We have been preserved, these many years, in peace and prosperity. We have grown in numbers, wealth and power, as no other nation bas ever grown. But we have forgotten God. We have forgotten the gracious hand which preserved us in peace, and multiplied and enriched and strengthened us; and we have vainly imagined, in the deceitfulness of our hearts, that all these blessings were produced by some superior wisdom and virtue of our own. Intoxicated with unbrohen success, we have become too selfsufficient to feel the necessity of redeeming and preserving grace, too proud to pray to the God that made us !
“It behooves us, then, to humble ourselves before the offended Power, to confess our National sins, and to pray for clemency and forgiveness.
“Now, therefore, in compliance with the request, and fully concurring in the views of the Senate, I do, by this my proclamation, designate and set apart Thursday, the thirteenih