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force, estimated at six to seven hundred, commanded by Colonel Hunter, of Jeff. Thompson's army. The National force was victorious, completely routing the enemy, killing forty, and taking seventeen prisoners. The National loss was one killed and eight wounded, among whom was Colonel Dougherty, slightly. Captain Noleman, with fifty mounted men, left Bird's Point at about six o'clock, August 20th, for Charlestown, to join the forces under Colonel Dougherty, but failed to form a junction with them. They met a party of Confederates, about one hundred strong, and gave them battle, killing two, and taking thirty-three prisoners, also capturing thirty-five horses, without the loss of a man.

Towards the close of August, troops began to collect in considerable numbers in St. Louis, and the necessary contracts for all descriptions of army supplies gave a stimulus to business, which was also increased by the construction of fortifications around St. Louis, which consisted of palisades, block-houses, and earthworks, on the west and south sides, so distributed that a small force could hold it, and the greater part of the troops be spared for other operations in the State. On the 16th of August, a train on the Hannibal and St. Joseph Railroad was fired into near Palmyra, and some soldiers killed. In consequence, General Pope sent Brigadier-General Hurlbut into the county, with orders to levy contributions to the extent of fifteen thousand dollars. Guerrilla parties scoured the country west of Jefferson City, and a train with two hundred and fifty United States soldiers was fired into near that city, with loss of life.

The boldness of the Confederate forces, and the number of recruits they were obtaining for guerrilla and army service in the western part of the State, evidently required severe measures of repression. During the month of August a considerable number of volunteers had arrived at St. Louis, and as fast as they could be armed and drilled for service, they were employed either in garrison duty at St. Louis, or, if they were sufficiently disciplined for service, in protecting the line of the Missouri River, and the northern part of the State, which was threatened by marauding bands of secessionists. Notwithstanding the extraordinary efforts made by the commanding general to procure arms, there was yet less than half a supply for the force already collected.

Believing that the proclamation of martial law against those concerned in promoting the rebellion, the confiscation of their property, and the freeing of their slaves, would be the most effectual blow he could then strike at secessionism in the State, since it would compel the secessionists to desist from their forays upon the property of Union men, in order to preserve their own, General Fremont issued, on the 31st of August, the following proclamation: —


ST. LOUIS, August 31st, 1861.

"Circumstances, in my judgment, of sufficient urgency, render it necessary that the commanding general of this department should assume the administrative powers of the State. Its disorganized condition, the helplessness of the civil authority, the total insecurity of life, and the devastations of property by bands of murderers and marau ders, who infest nearly every county of the State, and avail themselves of the public misfortunes and the vicinity of a hostile force to gratify private and neighborhood ven

geance, and who find an enemy wherever they find plunder, finally demand the severest measures to repress the daily increasing crimes and outrages which are driving off the inhabitants and ruining the State.

"In this condition the public safety and the success of our arms require unity of purpose, without let or hindrance, to the prompt administration of affairs.

"In order, therefore, to suppress disorder, to maintain as far as now practicable the public peace, and to give security and protection to the persons and property of loyal citizens, I do hereby extend and declare established martial law throughout the State of Missouri.

"The lines of the army of occupation in the State are for the present declared to extend from Leavenworth, by way of the posts of Jefferson City, Rolla, and Ironton, to Cape Girardeau on the Mississippi River.

"All persons who shall be taken with arms in their hands, within these lines, shall be tried by court-martial, and if found guilty, will be shot.

"The property, real and personal, of all persons in the State of Missouri who shall take up arms against the United States, or who shall be directly proven to have taken an active part with their enemies in the field, is declared to be confiscated to the public use, and their slaves, if any they have, are hereby declared free men.

"All persons who shall be proven to have destroyed, after the publication of this order, railroad tracks, bridges, or telegraphs, shall suffer the extreme penalty of the law.

"All persons engaged in treasonable correspondence, in giving or procuring aid to the enemies of the United States, in fomenting tumults, in disturbing the public tranquillity by creating and circulating false reports or incendiary documents, are in their own interests warned that they are exposing themselves to sudden and severe punishment.

"All persons who have been led away from their allegiance are required to return to their homes forthwith: any such absence, without sufficient cause, will be held to be presumptive evidence against them.

"The object of this declaration is to place in the hands of the military authorities the power to give instantaneous effect to existing laws, and to supply such deficiencies as the conditions of war demand. But it is not intended to suspend the ordinary tribunals of the country, where the law will be administered by the civil officers in the usual manner, and with their customary authority, while the same can be peaceably exercised.

"The commanding general will labor vigilantly for the public welfare, and in his efforts for their safety hopes to obtain not only the acquiescence, but the active support of the loyal people of the country. J. C. FREMONT, "Major-General Commanding."

On the day previous to the publication of this proclamation, but with direct reference to it, General Fremont had issued a special military order to the soldiers of the department, in which he rebuked the laxity and irregularities in discipline which had grown up with the progress of enlistment, and, referring to his forthcoming proclamation, reminded them that the exercise of martial law over the people would require the enforcement of strict discipline among themselves, lest they should inflict the severities of that law on those who did not merit its penalties. He also enjoined all officers to use the utmost prudence and circumspection in the discharge of their duties, to protect and avoid harassing innocent persons, &c.

The promulgation of this proclamation produced great excitement throughout the country, though much more in other States than in Missouri, where but slight objection was made to it, even by those who were personally hostile to the General. It was an advance in the direction of emancipation upon the Confiscation Act, approved by the President on the 6th of August previous, inasmuch as that act provided

only for the forfeiture and emancipation of the slaves of rebels, when such slaves had been actually employed in hostile service of any kind against the Government of the United States. The President, therefore, addressed a letter to General Fremont, requesting him to modify the proclamation so as to make it correspond with the Confiscation. Act, to which the General replied, expressing his preference that the President should himself make the modification. Accordingly, on the 11th of September, a letter from Mr. Lincoln to Major-General Fremont was published, in which, after stating the above facts, he concludes as follows:

"It is therefore ordered that the said clause of said proclamation [the clause in relation to the confiscation of property and the liberation of slaves] be so modified, held, and construed as to conform with, and not to transcend, the provisions on the same subject contained in the act of Congress, entitled 'An Act to confiscate property used for insurrectionary purposes,' approved August 6th, 1861; and that the said act be published at length with this order."

Previous to the reception of this order, General Fremont had granted deeds of manumission to two slaves of Thomas L. Snead, an active and prominent rebel of St. Louis.

An incident, having no connection with this proclamation, occurred at this juncture to increase the feeling against General Fremont. Montgomery Blair, Postmaster-General of the United States, and his brother, the Hon. Francis P. Blair, Jr., a member of Congress from St. Louis, had been friends of the General, and had requested from the President his assignment to the Western Department, and Francis P. Blair, Jr., had taken command of a volunteer regiment raised in St. Louis. Disapproving, however, of his commander's management, Colonel Blair wrote to his brother on the 1st of September (after the promulgation of the order above cited), complaining of want of discipline in the army which General Fremont was collecting, and closed his letter thus:

"My decided opinion is, that he should be relieved of his command, and a man of ability put in his place. The sooner it is done the better."

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On hearing of this letter, General Fremont, in accordance with the articles of war, caused the arrest of Colonel Blair, and asked from the President a copy of the letter. The Postmaster-General replied, forwarding a copy of the letter, and requesting his brother's release from arrest. General Fremont complied with his request, releasing Colonel Blair, and directing him to resume the command of his regiment. This he refused to do, but early in October addressed a series of charges against the General to Adjutant-General Thomas. Among the specifications of these charges were, that General Fremont had failed to repair promptly to St. Louis and enter upon his duties; that he had neglected to re-enforce Lyon and Mulligan; that he suffered BrigadierGeneral Hurlburt, "a common drunkard," to continue in command; that he refused to see people who sought his presence on matters of urgent business; that he had violated the President's orders in the matter of his proclamation of August 31st; that he had made efforts to procure commendation from his officers; that he persisted in

keeping disreputable persons in his employ; and that he had unjustly suppressed the St. Louis Evening News. Other parties, about the Bame time, made complaints through the public prints of his extravagance in his purchases, of his unnecessarily fortifying St. Louis, of his having given contracts to California speculators, and of his wasting the public money in the construction of gunboats.

No trial was bad on these charges, although they were the subject of two special ex parte investigations; and it may be remarked that subsequent developments, the course of his successor, General Halleck, and his own appointment to another important independent command, appear to have exonerated him at least from those which were most insisted upon.

We will now proceed with the narrative of events. The Federal garrison of Lexington, which, on the 29th of August, had repulsed a greatly superior force of rebel troops, consisted of only four hundred and thirty men. There was reason to suppose that General Price intended to attack the place so soon as his forces, which were collecting at Springfield, should become sufficiently large to enable him to do so. Accordingly, on the 1st of September, General Fremont ordered Colonel Mulligan, then at Jefferson City, in command of the Irish brigade, to re-enforce the garrison at Lexington, which, though intrenched, needed a larger body of troops. Colonel Mulligan arrived at the town on the 9th of September. It lies on the south side of the Missouri River (which here flows from west to east), one hundred and twenty miles west of Jefferson City, and contained at that time not far from five thousand inhabitants. It is situated on a high rocky bluff, which slopes almost precipitously directly down to the bed of the river, making a very steep ascent from the landing up into the city. Old Lexington was the early settlement, situated back on the hill. It has been superseded by New Lexington, farther up the river, where the steamboat landing now is, and which is the principal village. There are scattering houses along the bluff between the two, and both are now united under the name of Lexington. From the rear of the city the land recedes slightly in alternate successions of beautiful prairie and choice timber, and is well occupied by finely-cultivated farms, yielding a rich support to this hitherto thriving place.

The re-enforcements brought by Colonel Mulligan raised the whole strength of the garrison to about eighteen hundred men, including several hundred home guards. His artillery consisted of five brass pieces and two mortars, but the mortars were valueless, as he had no shells. He at once commenced increasing and strengthening the fortifications, which were placed on Masonic Hill, between the old and new towns, and consisted of earthworks ten feet in height, with a ditch eighth feet in width. Within these fortifications was a solid brick building, erected for a college, which was used as quarters for the Union soldiers, and had been strengthened to resist an artillery attack. The lines of the fortifications were extensive, and were capable of containing a force of ten thousand men.

On the 7th of September a detachment of the Federal troops went from Lexington to Warrensburg, twenty miles distant, and took a

quantity of coin from the bank there, but were pursued by the Confederate forces under General Price, who was in the vicinity of Warrensburg. They reached Lexington on the 11th, and on the 12th the Federal pickets were driven in by skirmishers from the advance-guard of the Confederates, under command of General Rains, who attacked them with nine pieces of artillery, but was repulsed. Skirmishes occurred every day after this, and meantime the Confederate force was constantly increasing. Colonel Mulligan dispatched messengers to Jefferson City for re-enforcements, but they were captured. General Fremont had, however, learned of his critical position, and made efforts to relieve him, but unsuccessfully. The Confederates had surrounded the town, and their force was so large that they could repel the troops sent to the relief of the beleaguered town. Fifteen hundred Iowa troops, who had arrived within sixteen miles of the river, were met by a greatly superior force and compelled to retire. Major Sturgis, with four thousand more, reached the north bank of the river a few miles below, but the Confederates had destroyed or captured all the ferry-boats for miles above and below, and they could not cross in time. General Lane, from the south-west, near the Kansas River, and Colonel Davis, from the south-east, had both been sent forward, and their united forces amounted to eleven thousand men; but they could not reach the scene of action till it was too late.

Affairs, meantime, were getting desperate with the besieged. On the 17th the water gave out, and the Confederates had cut them off from the river, while the shells, falling into the intrenchments, where their cattle, horses, and mules were picketed, and their train was placed, produced great havoc. Rations also began to grow short, and the home guard were becoming discouraged and mutinous. On the 18th, General Price sent a summons to Colonel Mulligan to surrender, to which that gallant commander replied: "If you want us, you must take us." The sufferings of the Federal troops for water were very severe. A shower of rain falling, they spread out their blankets, and, absorbing what they could of it, wrung it out and drank it. The moon through the nights shone brightly, and the firing night and day was incessant. It was evident, however, to the gallant Colonel, that his little force could not hold out longer, and, after several desperate charges of the enemy had been repulsed, he sent out a flag of truce for a parley on the afternoon of the 20th September. The only terms General Price would grant were unconditional surrender, the officers to be retained as prisoners of war, the men to be allowed to depart with their personal property, surrendering their arms and accoutrements.

Reluctantly this was acceded to, and the surrender took place. At four P. M. on Saturday, the 21st, the Federal forces, having laid down their arms, were marched out of the intrenchments to the tune of "Dixie," played by the rebel band. They left behind them their arms and accoutrements, reserving only their clothing. The prisoners were first made to take the oath not to serve against the Confederate States, when they were sent across the river, and, in charge of General Rains, marched to Richmond, sixteen miles; from there they were marched to Harville and released.

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