« PreviousContinue »
POSITION OF LOYAL MEN AND REBELS.
Brownlow, Nelson and others, Andrew prepared themselves for this issue by Johnson stood prominently forward. many years' laborious efforts; they had The high position attained by this last, forced it upon the loyal supporters of in consequence of the assassination of the Constitution and laws of the United President Lincoln, in 1865, will justify States; they had driven up to the a brief notice here of his life and career. point of fury and hatred the larger porAndrew Johnson
born at tion of the people of the South, and had Raleigh, N. C., in 1808. While very compelled them to face the inevitable young he lost his father, and was de result. And now it was to be tested, prived of all advantages of education. whether this great Republic was worthy He was apprenticed to a tailor, and of its name and place in the family served out his full term, seren years. of nations, or whether it was to be In 1826, he removed to Greenville, broken in pieces, and become a subject Tennessee, where he served in several for scorn and contempt among the local offices. Having, by the severest enemies of freedom throughout the labor and determination, improved him- world. self in every possible way, reading and Such being the issue, and such, as all studying at night, he was advanced men now saw, being the only mode of still further in popular favor. In 1841, settlement, it may be well here to note he went into the state senate; two briefly the relative position of the paryears later, he entered Congress; was ties concerned in this memorable conelected governor of Tennessee in 1853, flict, and to seek to form a clear concepand again in 1855; and in 1857, was tion of the prospects of those who had chosen United States Senator for the ranged themselves on the side of law long term, six years. In politics, John- and order, and on the side of disunion son ranked among the old Jacksonian and revolution. democracy; and when the rebellion As regards population, according broke out, he took his stand firmly on to the census of 1860 (see vol. iii., the side of law and order.
p. 553), the free states and territories Evidently, the sword was now fully contained nineteen millions, the slave drawn. The question at issue was to states something over twelve be settled, not by words, not by appeals millions. In addition to all on either hand, not by menaces or the free states, which were for the threatenings, not at all, in fact, but hy Union, of course, Delaware, Marythe stern, fearful, last arbitrament, that land, Kentucky and Missouri were of blood. They who loved their coun. ranked in the same connection; the try, and its honor and integrity, had no population of the loyal over the secealternative; they had but to accept the ding states was, consequently, rather issue thrust upon them, or see the more than two to one. In the arts of Union rent in pieces, and national pros industry, in commerce, trade, manufacperity swallowed up in the abyss. The tures, shipping, etc., the free states were leaders in the southern conspiracy had largely superior. In these respects, and
in the universally recognized claim to those particular things in which which all established governments have southern men excelled. The citizen upon the fealty of their people, there soldiers were excellent in their way can be no doubt that the loyal states but they were bred in time of peace, stood, not only before the world, but in and never expected to be employed fact, in the position best calculated to otherwise than in the customary discommand sympathy and enforce the plays in time of peace. requirements of the supreme law of the To this must be added the fact of the land. But, while all this was true, and vastly superior position of the “Conno less important than true, it must be federacy” for self-defence, for direct borne in mind, that the so-called “Con- communication with each and all its federacy” had several very decided parts, and for facility of intercourse by advantages over the Union and its means of railroads and telegraphs. defenders,
The secessionists had long been preThe people of the South, principally paring for the contest; they understood owing to the fact of their being slave- thoroughly the topography of the holders, were not only bred up in aris- country; they had made their calculatocratic notions of superiority, and in tions with great shrewdness and abilcontemptuous disregard for labor and ity; and, counting largely upon the its adjuncts, but were trained from boy- sympathy and co-operation of many in hood in the use of fire-arms, and in the North as well as in the old world, various kinds of exercises fitting they were ready to enter with all their them for military life and its excite- heart and soul into the war for disunion ments. In the war of 1812, and in and separation from those whom they that with Mexico, the South furnished professed to, and probably did, hate nearly twice as many soldiers as the and despise. The North was wholly North. So long as the system of un-prepared for war; the government slavery prevailed, and the class of labor. had everything, almost, to learn ers was such as rendered it degrading, armies had to be created, in fact; and in their eyes, for a white man to work, the vast distances between various the masters were of course at liberty to points of attack, where to pierce the devote themselves to the fascinating confederacy and break down its miliemployments of hunting, racing, con- tary power, increased immensely the tests of skill, and the like; and “the difficulties in the way of Mr. Lincoln chivalry” of the South was rarely de- and his advisers. And further, believficieut in zeal and spirit where its ing, as the rebels did, that “cotton was peculiar qualifications had room for king," they were so persuaded of its display. At the North, on the other importance to the world, especially to hand, the great mass of the population England and France, that they expected were engaged in the peaceful avocations the great powers of Europe to break of life, and had no time, even if they up directly any blockade which might bad the inclination, to devote attention be attempted to be put in force by the
United States. It is true that this re- On subsequent pages we shall bave
* See Greeley's “ American Conflict,” vol. i., pp. the other side of the Atlantic.
498–516, in which is a carefully prepared estimate of We need not, however, enlarge
“the relative strength of the opposing parties about
to grapple in mortal combat.” The reader will find further on this topic at this time. these pages worth consulting and examining.
CONGRESS IN SESSION: BULL RUN DISASTER.
Thirty-seventh Congress, extra session - President Lincoln's message - Extracts from - General object of
message - Concluding words — Reports from the secretaries as to the army, navy, and treasury - Spirit of Congress — Special points of interest — Debate on the army bill — Resolution of the House and Senate after Bull Run defeat -- Bill for confiscating the property of the rebels — Enacting clause approving the president's acts, proclamations, etc. — Adjournment of Congress - Confederate Congress – Davis's message — Its bitter tone - Various measures adopted—“On to Richmond !”— Impatience of the people — Gen. Patterson and his course – Gen. MeDowell in command of Army of the Potomac — Force under his command — March of the Grand Army from Washington — Tyler at Blackburn's Ford — Change of plan -- Vexatious and fatal delays - Extracts from McDowell's report, describing the battle of Bull Run — Jefferson Davis on the field — Num. bers of the troops engaged on both sides — Losses at Bull Run according to the Union and rebel accounts Beauregard's and Johnson's reasons for not pursuing the routed army - Rebel outrages - Effect of the disaster at Bull Run - Depression and discouragement - Criticism on the battle - Mr. Greeley's statements – Bitter but salutary lesson for the future.
On the 4th of July, 1861, in compli- | large, working majority of republicans. ance with the president's proclamation The next day, Mr. Lincoln sent in his (see p. 19), the Thirty-seventh Congress first message to Congress. It was a met in Washington for its first session. document looked for with no ordinary Senators from twenty-five states were interest in every part of the country, present, soon after the opening; in the and was eagerly read and commented
House 159 representatives ans- upon. In it the president discussed, at
wered to their names; and Mr. some length, the questions requiring Grow, of Pennsylvania, was elected speedy attention and action, and on acSpeaker, on the second ballot. In both count of which this extrà session of the Senate and the House there was a the national legislature was called. A
review of matters connected with the preserve our liberties, as each had then outbreak of the rebellion, and a brief to establish them. A right result, at this statement of the policy of the new ad- time, will be worth more to the world ministration, were given in clear precise than ten times the men and ten times terms.* Inasmuch, however, as the the money. The evidence reaching us secessionists were determined to force from the country leaves no doubt that upon the country the issue, “immediate the material for the work is abundant; dissolution or blood,” he stated distinct- and that it needs only the band of legis. ly what, in his judgment, Congress lation to give it legal sanction, and the ought to do. “It is now recommended hand of the executive to give it practithat you give the legal means for mak cal shape and efficiency." ing this contest a short and decisive The latter part of the message was one; that you place at the control of the devoted to arguing again the question government, for the work, at least 400, of secession and rebellion, and the 000 men and $400,000,000. That num-president, in characteristic terms, de ber of men is about one tenth of those nounced the folly and wickedness of of proper ages within the regions where, those who, for thirty years, bad been apparently, all are willing to engage; drugging the public mind with the and the sum is less than a twenty-third sophism, “ that any state of the Union part of the money-value owned by the may, consistently with the National men who seem ready to devote the Constitution, and therefore lawfully whole. A debt of $600,000,000 now, and peaceably, withdraw from the is a less sum per head than was the Union, without the consent of the debt of our Revolution when we came Union or of any other state.” “The out of that struggle; and the money states," as he justly said, “ have their value in the country now bears even a status in the Union, and they have no greater proportion to what it was then, other legal status. If they break from than does the population. Surely each this, they can only do so against law man has as strong a motive now, to and by revolution. The Union, and
* In view of the objections made by Chief Justice not themselves separately, procured Taney and others (see p. 29) on the subject of suspend their independence and their liberty. ing habeas corpus, Mr. Lincoln briefly argued the legality of his course on the ground of pressing necessity: By conquest, or purchase, the Union " The provision of the Constitution that the privilege gave each of them whatever of indeof the writ of habeas corpus shall not be suspended un
The less when, in case of rebellion or invasion, the public pendence and liberty it has. safety may require it,' is equivalent to a provision—is Union is older than any of the states, & provision—that such privilege may be suspended and, in fact, it created them as states. when, in case of rebellion or invasion, the public safety does require it.
The Constitution itself is Originally some dependent colonies silent as to which, or who, is to exercise the power; made the Union, and, in turn, the and as the provision was plainly made for a dangerous Union threw off their old dependence emergency, it cannot be believed that the framers of the instrument intended that, in every case, the danger for them, and made them states such should run its course, until Congress could be called
as they are. Not one of them ever had together; the very assembling of which might be prevented, as was intended in this case, by the rebellion." a state constitution independent of the