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tration was an article from James Russell Lowell, author of "The Biglow Papers," "the apostle of culture," says James Ford Rhodes of the ponderous history, "speaking from the groves of the academy":

"The backwoods lawyer has employed the material of the rebellion for its own destruction. The chances of war are now greatly in our favor. The nation is united against any shameful peace. Mr. Lincoln has been wise to leave the shaping of policy to events. The drift of public sentiment is too strong to be mistaken."

It was encouraging to have so wise a man of the East say in the "North American Review" more than you would say yourself. Lincoln read the pronouncement twice, wondering whether he could be as great a statesman as was there portrayed, though history has confirmed the poet in what was then a mere guess. It was time for more active moves. Senator Edwin D. Morgan of New York, a great merchant who was able a little later to give away a million dollars, called the Republican National Committee to meet on Washington's birthday in Washington, Gideon Welles of the cabinet sitting with them. They read the Pomeroy circular, just then under discussion in the press, but said nothing fit to print; they resolved themselves into the National Union Republican Committee and called the next Republican National Convention to meet in Baltimore as the National Union Republican Convention on June 7, a month later in the year than the convention which first nominated Lincoln had assembled. But the Chase men cried out "premature,"

and Winter Davis hurried over to Baltimore and engaged the only available hall for the week of June 7 and put the keys in his pocket. Nearly all the Republicans in Congress were still for Chase, and all the papers in New York but two were opposed to Lincoln, if not in favor of Chase; but on the fifth of March the Union Republican caucus of the Ohio legislature met and declined to indorse Chase, the "favorite son." Lincoln had won on two counts: the National Committee favored his renomination, and the Union Republican party of the greatest Western State seconded the National Committee, though Lincoln's own State was long in serious doubt. Chase withdrew from the canvass, though he by no means ceased to fight what he called the “sly Illinoisian."

Lincoln was hardly content with the outlook, the great States of Pennsylvania and Massachusetts hostile to him. The spring was opening and military successes in order, successes which few expected. There must be a majority in Baltimore, even if Davis did not let them have the convention hall; and he unfolded his plan. Michael Hahn of Louisiana must hasten the organization of the new Louisiana, not forgetting the delegates to Baltimore; John Hay slipped off to Florida to make a State out of two counties, held by the army, and lead its delegation to the Union Republican Convention; John Steele of Arkansas was to superintend similar work in Arkansas; and Parson Brownlow of eastern Tennessee, who needed no prodding, would bring up the delegates from that bewildered commu

nity. In western Virginia the president's agents were teaching former slaveholders the rubrics of new and unaccustomed rôles. If New Englanders and Horace Greeley, Salmon P. Chase and the irreconcilables in the Senate and House would insist upon a bitter fight, Lincoln would present them with delegations from the border States and enthusiastic supporters from the "ten per cent" communities of the South, not to mention Robert J. Breckenridge and Parson Brownlow.

Although Chase withdrew early in April, the course of events in Congress ran steadily against the president, and Lincoln's friends endeavored to reply. Frank Blair was set up or set himself up to speak for the administration. On February 27 he gave distinct warning what he might say; but on April 23 he rose again, his general's commission still in Lincoln's possession, epaulets upon his manly shoulders, the proud the proud father safe, I think, in the galleries, and began the most sensational speech that had been made in Congress since Charles Sumner indicted a whole people in "The Barbarism of Slavery." The secretary of the treasury was the butt of the driving if not ferocious attack: Chase had squandered the hard-earned money of the people to advance his precious candidacy; he had sent out hundreds of clever cotton traders with Treasury permits to finance the Pomeroy business; then Blair read a letter from a great New York banker which declared that Chase had given his son-in-law, Senator Sprague, a permit to buy cotton enough to make him two million dollars; and that the secretary even maintained

corrupt gangs of radicals in Missouri and Maryland to break down the power of the chief who had made him. Any gentleman would resign his place in the cabinet when he thus set out to attack his chief. The House was in an uproar; senators, learning of the attack, were indignant; and the newspapers outside at once made a sensation-it was Abraham Lincoln reduced to the necessity of fighting, fighting through a Blair-Seward, Welles, and Bates rejoicing.

Had Lincoln read the speech? Did he direct such an onslaught by members of the House against a member of his cabinet? All the world asked these questions. The president was embarrassed, his general having overshot the mark; but some of the charges of corruption leveled by Chase's agents against the administration were answered. The leaders of the House called for an immediate investigation. Lincoln returned Blair his commission, raised him to the command of the Seventeenth Army Corps, hastened him off to Sherman, and seemed not a little pleased at the anger and demoralization of all his enemies in both houses, Chase and Stanton keeping discreetly away from cabinet sessions. There were no satisfactory answers to Blair's attack, James A. Garfield, prospective successor to the wrathful Joshua Giddings, writing sorrowfully again: "Lincoln will be nominated and a copperhead will be elected. Not a dozen men in Congress think otherwise." Nor was the prophecy wide the mark as things then stood.

The call of the battle-field pressed by day and by night. Lee and his

praying ironsides waited there on the half-barren ridges south of the Wilderness; Joseph E. Johnson of the bald head and snuff-brown face, fifty-four thousand veterans about him, there on the hills of northern Georgia, waiting for the onset of Sherman and his hardened farmers. The gentle Lincoln, dreading the inevitable slaughter, permitted the elder Blair to slip off to Richmond and say to Jefferson Davis, "If you will let me write a reunited country into any agreement, you may write the rest." Davis, hardening his heart after the manner of the Pharaohs, declared there could never be a return to the Union. And Lincoln had to continue his vast preparations for the struggle, looking the while for a general to take the place of doubting Meade. The Blairs, always clever, suggested McClellan and opened correspondence with "copperheads" to that end. The young Napoleon, more popular every day than the preceding, could hardly promise what Blair asked; that is, not to think of running for the presidency against Lincoln. That was all McClellan thought of day or night that winter. Had not Stanton delayed and delayed the official report of military operations in 1861 and 1862 in the hope of weakening the general's candidacy, a report which declared to the world:

"This war should not look to subjugate states; it should not be a war upon the southern population; there should be no confiscations of property, no political executions, no forcible abolition of slavery."

Had not Lincoln done all these things? The report came out early in the winter, ten thousand copies

printed for the special benefit of members of Congress. The "New York Herald," the cleverest of all the papers at that time, thought it contained weighty matter and wise policy. Horace Greeley, opponent of Lincoln that he was, said, "General McClellan is the Pro-slavery candidate and he will prove more formidable in the canvass than in the field." McClellan was indeed the candidate, and none had done more to give him a following than Lincoln himself, when at the behest of Stanton he had dismissed him from the command of the Army of the Potomac, the day after the last national election. On March 18 there was a "monster" mass-meeting in Cooper Institute, New York; the aged Amos Kendall, of the Jackson kitchen cabinet, presided and talked of the great general of the day and of the greater general of old time who was of the same mind. It was clear that the young Napoleon could not be made the commander to try fortunes once more with Lee. But who was to be chosen to the unenviable task?

General W. S. Rosecrans of Ohio, who had been approached by Horace Greeley to become a candidate against Lincoln, had ruined himself at Chattanooga; General George H. Thomas, the hero of Chickamauga, was a Virginian; and William Tecumseh Sherman, brother of the suave cautious senator from Ohio, of sharp and profane speech, was "crazy.' There was no other than the little Ulysses S. Grant, disliked of Halleck and feared by Stanton, a WestPointer too, and a commander with a record for slaughtering his men. was a strange fate that made the son of a hard-boiled Democrat, tanner

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Jesse Grant of southern Ohio, the son-in-law of Colonel Frederick Dent, a shouting Democrat of Missouri and a slaveholder besides, the only available man to beat Lee, Mrs. Grant hiring out her negro servant for her own most needful support, a little while before. But war and politics make strange bedfellows. There

must be a new commander of the Army of the Potomac, five hundred thousand hesitating volunteers and conscripts slowly gathering under the unwelcome call of February 1, gathering at a score of training-camps in New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, and the rest of the doubtful States. Time and tide would not wait.

The burly Stanton had gone to Louisville a little before Congress assembled, a train all to himself, to see and talk with Grant. The secretary and the general, none too friendly, met in a private room; they talked long and in solemn tones; they were to meet again at eight o'clock in the evening. The hour arrived, but there was no General Grant. The The irascible and self-centered secretary paced the floor of his room; he sent out hasty agents to seek the indifferent Grant, the general not to be found. At eleven in the evening, the hero of Vicksburg appeared. He had been found, Stanton's intimate friend, Donn Piatt, said, at a place and in a condition not to be mentioned in a public report. How could Stanton recommend such a man, a Democrat and a slaveholder too? Did the reunion of a great country turn upon the answer to this twosided question?

Lincoln pondered, made inquiries, and told some of his uneasy con

science-keepers that he would like to get a little of the liquor the general drank-it seemed to make him fight. But would the general take the command of all the armies, win a great battle, and then, like McClellan, set up for the Democratic candidate? The presidential bee was abroad, the "New York Herald" already advocating Grant for the Democratic nomination! Horace Greeley, too, the busybody, had sent John R. Gilmore, the propagandist, to tempt Grant into the Republican fold with the suggestion of the presidency. It was not a light matter, Lincoln's great cause seeming to depend on the whims or the ambitions of mere men. Then Lincoln learned that Grant's most intimate friend in Chicago, J. R. Jones, a busy livery-stable man, might know what was under Grant's hat. Lincoln sent for Jones, and Jones, as he was leaving Chicago, took a letter from the post-office. It was from the stodgy general at Chattanooga, who reported that politicians pestered him about the White House. He had no patience with such. He was a fighting man. The letter safe in an inside pocket, Jones appeared at the White House, Lincoln ruminating, walking about the room, his wrinkled face unrelieved. Surmising the cause, the visitor handed the president the precious letter. Lincoln's face eased; then it lighted up. "I like that kind of a general."

On the first of March Ulysses S. Grant was made commander-in-chief of all the armies, his own rôle to lead the attack upon Lee-it was no easy prospect, the little stoopy general from the West, his coat unbuttoned, cap over his eyes, his boots none

his

too clean, silent, meditative, his unlucky past sometimes pestering him, father-in-law Dent always about, and father Grant not unwilling to supply the army with leather; but it was General Grant, nevertheless, "Unconditional surrender" his motto. Lee knew quickly of the appointment, Lee who had displaced a long series of Union commanders: McDowell and McClellan; Pope and McClellan again; poor Burnside and the bewildered Hooker; and then Meade who had won a victory without intending it. Now it was Grant, "who would fight." Would it be the Would it be the last? As I read history, the chances were with Lee that spring and not with the courageous new commander of the Army of the Potomac. Grant said he was not a strategist; he did not study Jomini, the master; he did not care a great deal about topography a dangerous frame of mind, if Grant represented himself aright that spring. It was March, the country expectant, doubtful, Congress in a bad humor, though the Senate confirmed the appointment. The roads began to dry; and Lincoln issued a call for two hundred thousand more men on the first of April, all the hospitals in Washington, Baltimore, and Philadelphia providing more space and more beds, thousands and thousands of beds. Lincoln had entered upon the war for the Union; he could not retreat, his democracy "here and all over the world" at stake.

As the day of encounter approached, the grape-vine telegraph told Lincoln, cleverest of interpreters, that the people were tired of the long bloodshed, opposed to the repeated calls for soldiers; the price of

wheat was high, and farmers liked their fields and firesides; the wages of mill-workers were high, and the workers were in a mood to resist the draft. Moreover the credit of the government declined every week, despite the efforts of Jay Cooke, his drives, and his expensive advertising. Horace Greeley indicated the feeling when he

wrote:

"Why should not any man lend to his Government? his Government? If you have $1,ooo in greenbacks, you get five per cent interest in gold and a gold bond, 48 per cent on the currency loaned. If you have $1,000 in specie, you can get $1,600 in greenbacks, lend it to the Government and receive $80 a year interest in gold and $1,600 principal when your bond falls due. Who can ask of his country better terms?"

Grant made ready to strike: David Hunter was in the Valley of Virginia, laying waste that fruitful source of Confederate supplies-Union commanders instructed to make ruthless campaigns; Benjamin F. Butler threatened from Norfolk with forty thousand men; Sherman had near a hundred thousand in front of Johnston, and Grant himself was ready to cross the Rapidan-a vast complex of moves and maneuvers all under the direction of the chief of the Army of the Potomac. On the fourth of May Grant crossed the river, marching southeast into the midst of the ghostly Wilderness, the bones of countless men and horses here as at second Bull Run scattered about or protruding from shallow graves, the skeletons of last year's conflict grinning at the beginners of another desperate attack upon the South. On

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