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as to what is to be the course of the government toward the Southern States after the rebeilion shall have been suppressed, the Executive deems it proper to say it will be his purpose, ther, as ever, to be guided by the Constitution and the laws, and that he probably will have no different understanding of the powers and duties of the Federal Government relatively to the rights of the States and the people under the Constitution than that expressed in the inaugural address. He desires to preserve the government, that it may be administered for all, as it was administered by the men who made it. Loyal citizens everywhere have the right to claim this of their government, and the government has no right to withhold or neglect it. It is not perceived that, in giving it, there is any coercion, any conquest, or any subjugation in any sense of these terms.
* The Constitution provided, and all the States have accepted the provision, that the United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican form of government;' but if a State may lawfully go out of the Union, having, done so, it may also discard the Republican form of government. So that to prevent its going out is an indispensable means to the end of maintaining the guarantee mentioned ; and, when an end is lawful and obligatory, the indispensable means to it are also lawful and obligatory.
“It was with the deepest regret that the Executive found the duty of employing the war power forced upon him. In defence of the government he could but perform this duty or surrender the existence of the government. No compromise by public servants could, in this case, be a cure; not that compromises are not often proper, but that no popular gofernment can long survive a marked precedent, that those who carry an election can only save the government from immediate destruction by giving up the main point upon which the people gave the election, The people themselves and not their servants can safely reverse their own deliberate decisions.
“As a private citizen, the Executive could not have consented that these institutions shall perish, much less could be in betrayal of so vast and so sacred a trust as these free people had confided to him. He felt that he had no moral right to shrink, nor even to count the chances of his own life in what might follow.
“In full view of his great responsibility, he has so far done what he has deemed his duty. You will now, according to your own judgment, perform yours. He sincerely hopes that your views and your actions may so accord with his as to assure all faithful citizens who have been disturbed in their rights of a certain and speedy restoration to them under the Constitution and laws; and, having thus chosen our cause without guile, and with pure purpose, let us renew our trust in God, and go forward without fear and with manly hearts.
“ ABRAHAM LINCOLN."
A DAY OF FASTING AND PRAYER AP
POINTED. On the twelfth of August, the following proclamation, appointing a day of fasting and prayer, was issued :
Whereas, A joint committee of both Houses of Congress has waited on the President of the United States, and requested him to recommend a day of public humiliation, prayer, and fast- . ing, to be observed by the people of the United States with religious solemnities, and the offering of fervent supplications to Almighty God for the safety and welfare of these States, His blessings on their arms, and a speedy restoration of peace.'
“And whereas, It is fit and becoming in all people, at all times, to acknowledge and revere the Supreme Government of · God; to bow in humble submission to his chastisements ; to confess and deplore their sins and transgressions, in the full conviction that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and to pray, with all fervency and contrition, for the pardon of their past offenoes, and for a blessing upon their present and prospective action.
“And whereas, When our own beloved country, once, by the blessing of God, united, prosperous, and happy, is now afilicted with faction and civil war, it is peculiarly fit for us to recognize the hand of God in this terrible visitation, and, in sorrowful remembrance of our own faults and crimes as a nation, and as individuals, to humble ourselves before Him, and to pray for His mercy—to pray that we may be spared further punishment, though most justly deserved ; that our arms may be blessed and made effectual for the re-establishment of law, order, and peace throughout the wide extent of our country; and that the inestimable boon of civil and religious liberty, earned under His guidance and blessing by the labors and sufferings of our fathers, may be restored in all its original excellence;
Therefore I, Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States, do appoint the last Thursday in September next as a day of humiliation, prayer and fasting for all the people of the nation. And I do earnestly recommend to all the people, and especially to all ministers and teachers of religion, of all denominations, and to all heads of families, to observe and keep that day, according to their several creeds and modes of worship, in all humility, and with all religious solemnity, to the end that the united prayer of the nation may ascend to the Throne of Grace, and bring down plentiful blessings upon our country. “In testimony whereof, I have hereunto set my hand, and
caused the seal of the United States to be affixed, this [L. s.] 12th day of August, A. D. 1861, and of the Independ
ence of the United States of America the eighty-sixth. By the President:
“ABRAHAM LINCOLN. “WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.”
COMMERCIAL INTERCOURSE WITH THE RE.
BELLIOUS STATES PROHIBITED. Four days later he also promulgated the following:
“Whereas, On the 15th dny of April, the President of the United States, in view of an insurrection against the laws, Con. stitution, and Government of the United States, which had broken out within the States of South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Florida, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Texas, and in pursnance of the provisions of the act entitled an act to provide for calling forth the militia to execute the laws of the Union, suppress insurrections, and repel invasions, and to repeal the act now in force for that purpose, approved February 28th, 1795, did call forth the militia to suppress said insurrection and cause the laws of the Union to be duly executed—and the insurgents have failed to disperse by the time directed by the President; and whereas, such insurrection has since broken out and yet exists within the States of Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Arkansas; and whereas, the insurgents in all the said States claim to act under authority thereof, and such claim is not disclaimed or repudiated by the persons exercising the functions of government in such State or States, or in the part or parts thereof, in which such combinations exist, nor has such insurrection been suppressed by said States.
Now, therefore, I, Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States, in pursuance of the act of Congress approved July 13th, 1861, do hereby declare that the inhabitants of the said States of Georgia, South Carolina, Tennessee, Alabama, Louisiana, Texas, Arkansas, Mississippi, and Florida, except the inhabitants of that part of the State of Virginia lying west of the Alleghany Mountains, and of such other parts of that State and the other States herein before nained as may maintain a loyal adhesion to the Union and the Constitution, or may be, from time to time occupied and controlled by the forces of the United States engaged in the dispersion of said insurgents, ag are in a state of insurrection against the United States, and that all commercial intercourse between the same and the inhabi. tants thereof, with the exception aforesaid, and the citizens of other States and other parts of the United States, is unlawful and will remain unlawful until such insurrection shall cease or has been suppressed ; that all goods and chattels, wares and merchandize, coming from any of the said States, with the exo ceptions aforesaid, into other parts of the United States, without the special license and permission of the President, through the Secretary of the Treasury, or proceeding to any of the said States, with the exception aforesaid, by land or water, together with the vessel or vehicle conveying the same or conveying persons to and from the said States, with the said exceptions, will be forfeited to the United States; and that, from and after fif. teen days from the issuing of this proclamation, all ships and vessels belonging, in whole or in part, to any citizen or inhabitant of any of the said State with the said exceptions, found at sea in any part of the United States, will be forfeited to the United States; and I hereby enjoin upon all' district attorneys, marshals, and officers of the revenue of the military and naval forces of the United States to be vigilant in the execution of the said act, and in the enforcement of the penalties and forfeitures imposed or declared by it, leaving any party who may think himself aggrieved thereby to his application to the Secretary of the Treasury for the remission of any penalty or forfeiture, which the said Secretary is authorized by law to grant if, in his judgment, the special circumstances of any case shall require such a remission,
“In witness whereof, I have hereunto set my hand, and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed.
“Done in the city of Washington, this, the 16th day of August, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-one, and of the Independence of the United States of America the eighty-sixth. “By the President:
“ABRAHAM LINCOLN. “WILLIAM H. SEWARD."
HE MODIFIES AN ORDER OF GENERAL FRE
MONT. In the latter part of August, General Fremont declared martial law throughout the State of Missouri, and at the same time ordered that the property of all persons within the limits of his Department who had been disloyal, should be confiscated, and their slaves declared free men, but the President promptly issued an order modifying that clause of the proclamation in relation to the confiscation of property and the liberation of slaves, so as to conform with, and not transcend the provisions on the same subject contained in the Act of Congress approved August 6th, 1861.
HIS SECOND MESSAGE TO CONGRESS. On the 3d of December, 1861, Congress having convened on the preceding day, the President sent in his Message, a document wbich was eminently conservative and which
was received with great satisfaction by the loyal men of the country. No general scheme of emancipation was urged, and in alluding to the policy to be adopted to ensure the suppression of the rebellion, he stated that he had been anxious and careful that the inevitable conflict necessary for that purpose should not degenerate into a violent and remorseless revolutionary struggle. “I have, therefore," he continued, “in every case, thought it proper to keep the integrity of the Union prominent as the primary object of the contest on our part, leaving all questions which are not of vital military importance to the more deliberate action of the Legislature.”
There can never be any difficulty in ascertaining Mr. Lincoln's views upon the exciting and absorbing topics of the day. His messages, proclamations, and correspondence all evince the same spirit of independence and determination, while his language is so explicit that there can be no doubt of his meaning. In his letter to Governor Magoffin, of Kentucky, declining to remove the Union troops from that State, and rebuking that official for his indifference to the cause of his country—in the one to General Fremont, in reference to the modification of his proclamation, and in fact in all his correspondence on matters connected with political movements, his views have been of such a force and exalted character that they could not fail to receive the hearty approbation of his fellow-country
On the nineteenth of February, 1862, he issued a proclamation requesting the people of the United States to assemble on the twenty-second of the same month and celebrate the day by reading the Farewell Address of the "Father of his Country."
THE PRESIDENT'S MESSAGE RECOMMENDING
GRADUAL EMANCIPATION. On the sixth of March, 1862. the President sent into