E-text prepared by an anonymous volunteer
The chapter summaries in the Table of Contents are repeated in the text at the start of each chapter.
Footnotes are at the end of the chapter (or section of a Table of Congress), referenced by parenthesized numbers, e.g. (1).
The capitalization of hyphenated words is inconsistent, following the text, as is the use of the comma in lists.
The tables of the 39th and 40th Congresses are moved to the Appendices.
Line 2874: "gauge of battle" changed to "gage of battle"
Line 12981: missing numerator in "3/10" supplied from preceding text.
Non-standard spellings: domicil; hinderance; cotemporary]
TWENTY YEARS OF CONGRESS:
From Lincoln to Garfield
With a Review of the Events Which Led to the Political Revolution of 1860.
JAMES G. BLAINE.
Norwich, Conn.: The Henry Bill Publishing Company. 1886. Copyright, 1884, by James G. Blaine. All rights reserved.
Electrotyped and Printed By Rand, Avery, and Company, Boston, Mass
CONTENTS OF VOLUME II.
ANDREW JOHNSON INSTALLED AS PRESIDENT.—CABINET AND SENATORS WITNESSES TO THE CEREMONY.—RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE NEW PRESIDENT DELICATE IN CHARACTER.—REQUIRING THE HIGHEST ORDER OF STATESMANSHIP.—THE QUESTION OF RECONSTRUCTION.—ITS PECULIAR DIFFICULTIES.—NEW AND PERPLEXING QUESTIONS.—CHARACTER AND CAREER OF MR. JOHNSON.—BORN IN NORTH CAROLINA.—MIGRATES TO TENNESSEE.—HIS RAPID PROMOTION IN THAT STATE.— A TAILOR BY TRADE.—WITHOUT EDUCATION—TAUGHT TO READ AT FIFTEEN.— MAYOR OF TOWN AT TWENTY-TWO.—IN THE LEGISLATURE AT TWENTY-SEVEN.— PRESIDENTIAL ELECTOR IN 1840 AT THIRTY-TWO.—IN CONGRESS AT THIRTY- FIVE.—GOVERNOR FROM 1853 TO 1857.—HIS HOMESTEAD POLICY.—NECESSARY ANTAGONISM WITH SLAVERY.—HIS IDEAL OF A RURAL POPULATION.—BOLDNESS OF HIS POLITICAL COURSE IN TENNESSEE.—HIS LOYALTY TO THE UNION.— SEPARATES FROM THE DEMOCRATIC CONSPIRATORS.—HIS CAREER IN THE CIVIL WAR.—APPOINTED MILITARY GOVERNOR OF TENNESSEE.—HIS ABLE ADMINISTRATION OF THE OFFICE.—FORESHADOWS A SEVERE POLICY AS PRESIDENT.—CONTRAST WITH MR. LINCOLN.—ANALYSIS OF JOHNSON'S POSITION. —HIS BRIEF INAUGURAL ADDRESS.—EFFECT PRODUCED BY IT.—HIS ADDRESS TO AN ILLINOIS DELEGATION.—SIGNIFICANT INDICATION OF A HARSH POLICY TOWARDS THE REBELS.—PRESTON KING'S INFLUENCE.—PRESIDENT'S ADDRESS TO A CHRISTIAN COMMISSION.—TO LOYAL SOUTHERNERS.—TO A PENNSYLVANIA DELEGATION.—PRESIDENT'S TONE GROWS STERNER TOWARDS "TRAITORS."— STRIKING CONVERSATION WITH SENATOR WADE.—FUNERAL CEREMONIES OF THE LATE PRESIDENT.—REMAINS CARRIED TO ILLINOIS.—IMPRESSIVE SCENE IN BALTIMORE.—IN PHILADELPHIA.—BODY REPOSES IN INDEPENDENCE HALL.— CONTRAST WITH FOUR YEARS BEFORE.—UNPARALLELED DISPLAY OF FEELING IN NEW YORK.—ORATION BY GEORGE BANCROFT.—ELEGIAC ODE BY WILLIAM CULLEN BRYANT.—INTERMENT IN ILLINOIS.—CEREMONIES COMPARED WITH THOSE OF ROYALTY.—PROFOUND FEELING THROUGHOUT THE COUNTRY.—PUBLIC MANIFESTATION OF MOURNING.
MILITARY REVIEW IN HONOR OF UNION VICTORY.—THE EASTERN AND WESTERN ARMIES.—THEIR GREAT ACHIEVEMENTS.—SPECIAL INTEREST.—NUMBER OF BATTLES DURING THE WAR.—NUMBER EACH YEAR.—STRUGGLE OF 1861-65.— DISCIPLINE OF THE ARMY.—MORAL RESPONSIBILITY OF CONTINUING THE CONTEST.—NEEDLESS SLAUGHTER OF MEN.—CONFEDERATE RESPONSIBILITY.— SPEECH OF ROBERT M. T. HUNTER, FOLLOWED BY JUDAH P. BENJAMIN.— EXTREME MEASURES ADVOCATED BY HIM.—HIS OVER-ZEAL.—MR. BENJAMIN SEEKS REFUGE IN ENGLAND.—HIS SUCCESS THERE DUE TO ENGLISH SYMPATHY WITH THE REBELLION.—HIS MALIGNITY TOWARDS THE UNION.—SOUTHERN CHARACTER.—ITS STRONG POINTS AND ITS WEAK POINTS.—CONDUCT OF CONFEDERATE CONGRESS.— THEIR INFLAMMATORY ADDRESS.—ITS EXTRAVAGANCE AND ABSURDITY.—JEFFERSON DAVIS'S ADDRESS TO CONGRESS.—HIS LACK OF MORAL COURAGE.—DISBANDMENT OF UNION ARMY, 1,00,516 MEN.—ANOTHER MILLION GONE BEFORE.—SELF- SUPPORT AND SELF-ADJUSTMENT.—COMPARISON WITH THE ARMY OF THE REVOLUTION.—UNION OFFICERS ALL YOUNG MEN.—AGES OF OFFICERS IN OTHER WARS.—AGES OF REGULAR ARMY OFFICERS.—OF VOLUNTEER OFFICERS.—HARMONY OF THE TWO.—SPECIAL EFFICIENCY OF THE VOLUNTEERS.—MAGNITUDE OF THE UNION ARMY.—THE INFANTRY, CAVALRY, ARTILLERY.—NUMBER OF GENERALS.— NUMBER OF REGIMENTS.—MILITARY RESOURCES OF THE REPUBLIC.—ITS SECURITY IN TIME OF DANGER.
THE RECONSTRUCTION PROBLEM.—THE PRESIDENT'S PUBLIC ADDRESSES.—TIME FOR ACTION ARRIVED.—PROCLAMATION DECLARING HOSTILITIES CEASED.—MANNER OF DEALING WITH INSURRECTIONARY STATES.—MR. LINCOLN'S FIRST EFFORTS AT RECONSTRUCTION.—ELECTION IN LOUISIANA.—FLANDERS AND HAHN.—MR. LINCOLN'S NOTE TO GENERAL SHEPLEY.—TO CUTHBERT BULLETT.—MR. LINCOLN'S DEFINITE PLAN.—"ONE-TENTH" OF VOTERS TO ORGANIZE LOYAL STATE GOVERNMENT.—FREE-STATE CONVENTION IN LOUISIANA.—MICHAEL HAHN ELECTED GOVERNOR.—CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION.—MR. LINCOLN'S CONGRATULATIONS.— SIMILAR ACTION IN ARKANSAS.—ISAAC MURPHY ELECTED GOVERNOR.— REPRESENTATION IN CONGRESS DENIED TO THESE STATES.—MR. SUMNER'S RESOLUTION.—ADOPTED BY SENATE.—SIMILAR ACTION IN HOUSE.—CONFLICT BETWEEN THE PRESIDENT AND CONGRESS.—CONGRESSIONAL PLAN OF RECONSTRUCTION.—THREE FUNDAMENTAL CONDITIONS.—BILL PASSED JULY 4, 1864.—NOT APPROVED BY THE PRESIDENT.—HIS REASONS GIVEN IN A PUBLIC PROCLAMATION.—SENATOR WADE AND H. WINTER DAVIS CRITICISE THE PROCLAMATION.—THEIR PROTEST.—SUBSEQUENT RESOLUTION OF CONGRESS.—THE PRESIDENT'S REPLY TO IT.—MR. LINCOLN'S PROBABLE COURSE ON THE SUBJECT OF RECONSTRUCTION.—RECONSTRUCTION OF THE GOVERNMENT OF TENNESSEE.—THE QUICK PROCESS OF DOING.—RATIFIED BY POPULAR VOTE, 25,293 TO 48.— PARSON BROWNLOW CHOSEN GOVERNOR.—PATTERSON AND FOWLER ELECTED SENATORS.—JOHNSON'S INAUGURATION AS VICE-PRESIDENT.—HIS SPEECH.—WERE THE REBEL STATES OUT OF THE UNION?—JOHNSON'S VIEWS.—MR. LINCOLN'S VIEWS.—RADICAL AND CONSERVATIVE.—EXTRA SESSION DEBATED.—ADVERSE DECISION.—ILL-LUCK OF EXTRA SESSIONS.
PRESIDENT JOHN AND THE CABINET.—EFFECT OF VICE-PRESIDENT'S ACCESSION. —EXAMPLE OF TYLER IN 1841 AND FILLMORE IN 1850.—A VICE-PRESIDENT'S DIFFICULT POSITION.—PERSONNEL OF CABINET IN 1865.—ITS NEARLY EVEN DIVISION ON RECONSTRUCTION ISSUES.—PRESUMED POSITION OF EACH MEMBER.— STANTON, HARLAN, AND DENNISON RADICAL.—WELLES, McCULLOCH, AND SPEED CONSERVATIVE.—MR. SEWARD'S RELATION TO THE PRESIDENT.—HIS POSITION EXPLAINED.—MR. SEWARD REGAINS HIS HEALTH.—DISPLAY OF HIS PERSONAL POWER.—CHARACTERISTICS OF MR. SEWARD.—SUPERIORITY OF HIS MIND.— TENDENCY OF THE PRESIDENT'S MIND.—SOCIAL INFLUENCES AT WORK UPON HIM. —HIS RADICAL CHANGE OF POSITION.—PRESIDENT'S PROCLAMATION MAY 29.— AMNESTY AND PARDON TO REBELS.—THIRTEEN EXCEPTED CLASSES.—THE "TWENTY- THOUSAND-DOLLAR" DISABILITY.—WARMLY OPPOSED BY MR. SEWARD.—CLEMENCY PROMISED TO EXCEPTED CLASSES.—PARDONS APPLIED FOR.—FOURTEEN THOUSAND GRANTED IN NINE MONTHS.—ANOTHER PROCLAMATION OF SAME DATE.— PROVISIONAL GOVERNORS APPOINTED.—FIRST FOR NORTH CAROLINA.—EXISTING GOVERNMENTS IN VIRGINIA, LOUISIANA, ARKANSAS, AND TENNESSEE RECOGNIZED.—PRESIDENT'S RECONSTRUCTION POLICY.—NOW FULLY DISCLOSED.— OATH OF ALLEGIANCE PRESCRIBED.—PROVISIONAL GOVERNORS TO ASSEMBLE CONVENTIONS.—THE CONVENTIONS TO FORM CONSTITUTIONS.—LEGISLATURES THEN TO ASSEMBLE.—WHOLE MACHINERY OF GOVERNMENT IN MOTION.—REBELS IN POSSESSION OF STATE GOVERNMENTS.—COLORED MEN EXCLUDED FROM ALL PARTICIPATION.—SUFFRAGE LEFT TO THE STATES.—PRESIDENT'S PERSONAL POSITION ON SUFFRAGE.—RECONSTRUCTION SCHEME COMPLETE IN JULY.—THE PRESIDENT AND THE REPUBLICAN PARTY.—HIS BELIEF THAT THE PARTY WOULD FOLLOW HIM.—HIS HOSTILITY TO RADICALS.—PRESIDENT DEPENDS ON CONDUCT OF THE SOUTH.—PUBLIC INTEREST TRANSFERRED TO THAT SECTION.
GREAT OPPORTUNITY GIVEN TO THE SOUTH.—THEIR RESPONSE TO THE PRESIDENT'S TREATMENT.—NORTHERN DESIRE FOR RESTORATION OF THE UNION.— SOUTH DOES NOT RESPOND TO IT.—SOUTHERN RECONSTRUCTION CONVENTIONS.— INCOMPLETE AND ILL-DIGESTED PROCEEDINGS.—REBELS APPLY FOR SEATS IN CONGRESS.—IRON-CLAD OATH IN THEIR WAY.—THEY DENOUNCE IT AS UNCONSTITUTIONAL.—COURSE OF ALEXANDER H. STEPHENS.—SOUTHERN FEELING TOWARDS THE UNION.—THEIR CONVENTIONS EXHIBIT HATRED.—HOSTILE MANIFESTATIONS.—EXPRESSIONS OF PRESS AND STUMP ORATORS.—LEADING REBELS NOMINATED FOR OFFICE.—SOUTH DESCRIBED BY MR. FESSENDEN'S COMMITTEE.—SOUTH MISLED BY NORTHERN DEMOCRACY IN 1865.—FORMER CALAMITY FROM SAME CAUSE IN 1861.—WHAT CONGRESS WOULD DEMAND OF THE SOUTH.—THREE INDISPENSABLE REQUIREMENTS.—SOUTHERN LEGISLATURES DEFIANTLY RESIST.—CHARACTER OF THOSE LEGISLATURES.—PRACTICAL RE-ENACTMENT OF THE SLAVE-CODE.—CRUELTY OF ALABAMA STATUTES.— FRAUDULENT IN THEIR NATURE.—COURSE OF THE CITY OF MOBILE.—STATUTES OF FLORIDA STILL WORSE.—UNFAIR TAXATION.—POLL-TAX OF THREE DOLLARS.— A LIEN UPON THE NEGRO'S LABOR.—OPPRESSION OF THE NEGRO.—ENACTMENTS IN SOUTH CAROLINA.—CHARACTERIZED BY RANK INJUSTICE.—PENAL ENACTMENTS IN MISSISSIPPI.—ATROCIOUS PROVISIONS.—LAWS OF LOUISIANA WORST OF ALL.— CAPITATION TAX IN THE SOUTH.—ITS UNJUST EFFECT.—SCHOOL LAWS.— EDUCATION PRACTICALLY DENIED TO THE NEGRO.-HE IS TAXED FOR THE EDUCATION OF THE WHITES.—DISPROPORTION OF BURDENS PLACED UPON HIM.— REVIEW OF THE BLACK CODE.—SOME DETAILS OF ITS PROVISIONS.—INCREDIBLY CRUEL.—THE SOUTH WITHOUT EXCUSE FOR ITS ENACTMENT.—THEIR DETERMINATION TO VINDICATE SLAVERY.—TO BRING REPROACH ON THE NORTH.— INFLUENCE OF THESE PROCEEDINGS ON MR. SEWARD.—HIS MODE OF SELF- JUSTIFICATION.—SEVERELY CENSURED BY HIS OLD SUPPORTERS.—MISLED BY THE COURSE OF EVENTS.—HIS LOSS OF POPULARITY.
MEETING OF THE THIRTY-NINTH CONGRESS.—RE-ELECTION OF SPEAKER COLFAX.— HIS ADDRESS ON TAKING THE CHAIR.—THADDEUS STEVENS MOVES FOR A COMMITTEE OF RECONSTRUCTION.—RESISTED BY DEMOCRATS.—REBEL CONTESTANTS DENIED ADMISSION TO THE FLOOR.—MUCH FEELING ON THE QUESTION.— PROCEEDINGS OF THE SENATE.—PROPOSITIONS OF MR. SUMNER.—ANNUAL MESSAGE OF THE PRESIDENT.—OUTLINE OF ITS CONTENTS.—APPARENTLY CONSERVATIVE IN TONE.—NOT PERSONALLY AGGRESSIVE.—LEADING MEN OF THE THIRTY-NINTH CONGRESS.—DEATH OF BOTH VERMONT SENATORS.—NEW SENATORS.—NEW MEMBERS OF THE HOUSE.—SKETCHES OF PROMINENT SENATORS AND REPRESENTATIVES.— PRESIDENT JOHNSON'S PATRONAGE.—UNPRECEDENTED VOLUME OF IT DUE LARGELY TO THE WAR.—DANGER OF ITS USE AGAINST REPUBLICANS.—APPREHENSIONS OF REPUBLICANS.—RECONSTRUCTION RESOLUTION IN THE SENATE.—AMENDED IN THAT BODY.—CONCURRENCE OF HOUSE.—APPOINTMENT OF COMMITTEE.—STRONG CHARACTER OF ITS MEMBERS.—HOUSE RESOLUTIONS.—DEBATE ON RECONSTRUCTION.—LONGEST DEBATE IN THE HISTORY OF CONGRESS.—OPENED BY MR. STEVENS.—VERY RADICAL IN ITS TONE.—HE SKETCHES CHANGED BASIS OF REPRESENTATION.—GIVES OFFENSE TO THE ADMINISTRATION.—MR. HENRY J. RAYMOND.—HIS REPLY TO MR. STEVENS.—HIS STRONG ATTACHMENT TO MR. SEWARD.—THEORY OF DEAD STATES.—SPEECH OF MR. SPALDING.—MR. SHELLABARGER REPLIES TO MR. RAYMOND.—EXHAUSTIVE SPEECH.—GAVE HIM A LEADING PLACE IN THE HOUSE.—SEVERE ATTACK ON THE SOUTH.—RESOLUTIONS OF MR. VOORHEES SUSTAINING ADMINISTRATION.—SPEECH IN SUPPORT OF THEM. —MR. BINGHAM'S REPLY.—HOUSE REFUSES TO INDORSE THE ADMINISTRATION.— TWO REPUBLICANS JOIN DEMOCRATIC VOTE.—DISAPPOINTMENT OF MR. RAYMOND.— THINKS DEMOCRATIC SUPPORT A MISFORTUNE.—CHARACTER OF MR. RAYMOND.—HIS GREAT ABILITY.—HIS LIFE SHORTENED.—DIED AT FORTY-NINE.
SENATE DEBATE ON RECONSTRUCTION.—SPEECH OF MR. WILSON.—DENOUNCES THE PRO-SLAVERY STATUTES OF SOUTHERN STATES.—REPLY OF REVERDY JOHNSON.— MR. SUMNER SUSTAINS MR. WILSON.—SPEECHES OF WILLARD SAULSBURY AND MR. COWAN.—EARNEST DEBATE BEFORE HOLIDAYS.—EMBARRASSMENT OF THE REPUBLICAN PARTY.—THE PRESIDENT'S PRESUMED STRENGTH.—POSITION OF COMMERCIAL MEN.—FIRMNESS OF REPUBLICAN MEMBERS OF CONGRESS.— CONTRASTED WITH CONDUCT OF WHIGS IN 1841.—COVODE AND SCHURZ CALLED FOR.—PRESIDENT'S SPECIAL MESSAGE.—SENDS REPORT OF MR. SCHURZ AND LIEUTENANT-GENERAL GRANT.—CALLS SPECIAL ATTENTION TO GENERAL GRANT'S REPORT.—REPORT APPARENTLY SUSTAINS THE ADMINISTRATION.—MR. SUMNER DENOUNCES PRESIDENT'S MESSAGE.—COMPARES JOHNSON TO PIERCE.—MR. SCHURZ'S REPORT SUBMITTED.—HIS PICTURE OF THE SOUTHERN CONDITION.—HIS RECOMMENDATIONS.—FAVORS NEGRO SUFFRAGE.—HOW MR. SCHURZ WAS SELECTED. —EXTENT OF HIS TOUR IN THE SOUTH.—DIVERGENT CONCLUSIONS OF THE TWO.— SUBSEQUENT CHANGE OF POSITION OF BOTH.—INTERESTING CASE IN THE UNITED- STATES SENATE.—JOHN P. STOCKTON SWORN IN AS SENATOR FROM NEW JERSEY.— PROTEST AGAINST HIS RIGHT TO A SEAT.—JUDICIARY COMMITTEE REPORT IN HIS FAVOR.—DEBATE IN THE SENATE.—MR. CLARKE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE.—ABLE SPEECH OF MR. FESSENDEN.—HE EXAMINES THE CONSTITUTIONAL GROUND.—HIS CONCLUSIVE REASONING.—LONG DEBATE.—DECISION AGAINST MR. STOCKTON.— IMPORTANT RESULTS FLOWING FROM IT.—CONGRESS REGULATES TIME AND MANNER OF ELECTING SENATORS.—CHANGE FROM STATE CONTROL TO NATIONAL CONTROL.— ALEXANDER G. CATTELL SUCCEEDS MR. STOCKTON.—DEATH OF MR. WRIGHT.— FREDERICK T. FRELINGHUYSEN SUCCEEDS HIM.
THE PRESIDENT OFFENDED.—ADVERSE VOTE IN CONGRESS SURPRISES HIM.— FREEDMEN'S BUREAU ESTABLISHED.—MAJOR-GENERAL HOWARD APPOINTED COMMISSIONER.—HIS CHARACTER.—DEFICIENCY OF THE BUREAU.—SUPPLEMENTARY ACT.—ITS PROVISIONS.—CONFLICT WITH STATE POWER.—LONG DEBATE.—SPEECH OF IGNATIUS DONNELLY.—THE PRESIDENT'S VETO.—SEVERE ATTACK UPON THE POLICY.—EXPENSE OF THE BUREAU.—SENATE FAILS TO PASS BILL OVER VETO.— ANOTHER BILL TO SAME EFFECT PASSED.—MORE GUARDED IN ITS PROVISIONS.— PRESIDENT VETOES THE SECOND BILL.—SENATE AND HOUSE PASS IT OVER THE VETO.—UNPOPULARITY OF THE MEASURE.—SENATOR TRUMBULL INTRODUCES CIVIL RIGHTS BILL.—ITS PROVISIONS.—RADICAL IN THEIR EFFECT.—SPEECH OF REVERDY JOHNSON.—DEBATE IN THE HOUSE.—PRESIDENT VETOES THE BILL.— MAKES ELABORATE ARGUMENT AGAINST IT.—EXCITING DEBATE ON VETO.—MR. TRUMBULL'S SPEECH.—SEVERE REVIEW OF PRESIDENT'S COURSE.—EXCITING SPEECH OF MR. WADE.—ILLNESS OF MR. WRIGHT.—SEVERE REMARKS OF MR. McDOUGAL AND MR. GUTHRIE.—DEBATE IN THE HOUSE.—BOTH BRANCHES PASS BILL OVER VETO.—RADICAL CHARACTER OF THE MEASURE.—RELATIONS OF PRESIDENT AND CONGRESS.—OPENLY HOSTILE.—POPULAR MEETING IN WASHINGTON.—PRESIDENT'S ACTION APPROVED.—PRESIDENT' SPEECH 22D OF FEBRUARY.—ITS UNDIGNIFIED AND VIOLENT CHARACTER.—CALLS MEN BY NAME.— UNFAVORABLE IMPRESSION UPON THE COUNTRY.—THE PRESIDENT LOSING GROUND. —REPUBLICANS IN CONGRESS ANXIOUS.—EXCITING PERIOD.—SENATOR LANE OF KANSAS.—HIS POLITICAL DEFECTION.—HIS SUICIDE.—PERSONAL HISTORY.—HIS PUBLIC SERVICES.—SUICIDE OF PRESTON KING.—SUPPOSED REASONS FOR THE ACT.
CONTEST BETWEEN PRESIDENT AND CONGRESS.—POINTS OF DIFFERENCE.—WHAT CONGRESS INSISTED ON.—REQUIRED DEFINITION OF AMERICAN CITIZENSHIP.— POLITICAL DISABILITIES.—THE PUBLIC CREDIT.—PROTECTION OF NATIONAL PENSIONS.—REPUDIATION OF REBEL DEBT.—POSSIBLE PAYMENT FOR SLAVES.— APPREHENSIONS OF CAPITALISTS.—DANGER HANGING OVER NATIONAL TREASURY.— AMENDMENTS TO THE FEDERAL CONSTITUTION.—SHOULD REBEL STATES PARTICIPATE.—MR. SEWARD'S VIEW.—MR. THADDEUS STEVENS'S VIEW.— PROCEEDINGS OF RECONSTRUCTION COMMITTEE.—PROPOSED BASES OF REPRESENTATION.—AMENDMENT PROPOSED BY MR. SPALDING.—BY MR. BLAINE.— BY MR. CONKLING.—SPEECH OF MR. JENCKES OF RHODE ISLAND.—BY MR. BAKER AND MR. INGERSOLL OF ILLINOIS.—BY MR. SHELLABARGER.—BY MR. PIKE OF MAINE.—MR. SCHENCK'S AMENDMENT.—HOUSE ADOPTS AMENDMENT.—OPPOSED IN THE SENATE.—LONG SPEECH OF MR. SUMNER.—REPLY OF MR. FESSENDEN.— SPEECH OF SENATOR HENDERSON.—HIS RADICAL PROPOSITION.—SENATE DEFEATS HOUSE AMENDMENT.—NEW PROPOSITION FROM THE RECONSTRUCTION COMMITTEE.— FOURTEENTH AMENDMENT TO THE CONSTITUTION PROPOSED.—ITS ORIGINAL FORM. —DEBATE IN THE HOUSE.—PROCEEDINGS IN THE SENATE.—LONG DEBATE.— SPEECHES BY MR. HOWARD, MR. HENDRICKS, MR. SHERMAN, MR. REVERDY JOHNSON, MR. DOOLITTLE.—FINAL ADOPTION OF THE FOURTEENTH AMENDMENT BY BOTH BRANCHES.—NOTIFICATION TO THE STATES JUNE 16.—PROMPT ADOPTION BY TENNESSEE.—TENNESSEE RE-ADMITTED TO REPRESENTATION.—ACTION OF SENATE AND HOUSE THEREON.—REASONS ASSIGNED FOR PASSING THE BILL.—PRESIDENT APPROVES THE BILL, BUT DISAPPROVES THE REASONS FOR ITS PASSAGE.—HIS INGENIOUS CENSURE OF CONGRESS.—ADJOURNMENT OF CONGRESS.—IMPENDING POLITICAL CONTEST.—STRUGGLE BETWEEN THE PRESIDENT AND CONGRESS.
A CABINET CRISIS.—RESIGNATION OF WILLIAM DENNISON, POSTMASTER-GENERAL, JAMES SPEED, ATTORNEY-GENERAL, AND JAMES HARLAN, SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR.—SUCCEEDED RESPECTIVELY BY ALEXANDER W. RANDALL, HENRY STANBURY, AND ORVILLE H. BROWNING.—POLITICAL CAMPAIGN OF 1866.—FOUR NATIONAL CONVENTIONS.—TWO FAVORING THE PRESIDENT; TWO ADVERSE.— PHILADELPHIA CONVENTION, AUGUST 14, FAVORING THE PRESIDENT.—IMPRESSIVE IN NUMBERS, DISTINGUISHED IN DELEGATES.—PHILADELPHIA CONVENTION OF SEPTEMBER 13.—SOUTHERN LOYALISTS AND NORTHERN SYMPATHIZERS.—LIST OF PROMINENT MEN IN ATTENDANCE.—MARKED EFFECT OF ITS PROCEEDINGS.— SPEECH OF HONORABLE JAMES SPEED.—ADDRESS TO THE PEOPLE.—WRITTEN BY THE HONORABLE J. A. J. CRESWELL.—SOLDIERS' CONVENTION AT CLEVELAND.— FAVORABLE TO THE PRESIDENT.—SPEECH OF GENERAL EWING.—CONVENTION PRINCIPALLY DEMOCRATIC IN MEMBERSHIP.—ITS PROCEEDINGS INEFFECTIVE.— SOLDIERS' CONVENTION AT PITTSBURG.—HOSTILE TO PRESIDENT.—GENERAL COX PRESIDES.—DISTINGUISHED OFFICERS PRESENT.—TWENTY-FIVE THOUSAND SOLDIERS PRESENT.—GREAT EFFECT FOLLOWED IT IN THE COUNTRY.—FOURTEENTH AMENDMENT THE RALLYING-POINT.—POLITICAL EVENTS OF THE SUMMER.—HOSTILE TO PRESIDENT.—NEW-ORLEANS RIOT OF JULY 30.—GREAT SLAUGHTER.—REBEL OFFICERS IN LOUISIANA RESPONSIBLE.—INVESTIGATED BY CONGRESS.—ALSO BY MILITARY AUTHORITIES.—REPORTS SUBSTANTIALLY AGREE.—CENSURE OF THE PRESIDENT.—RESULT HURTFUL TO HIS ADMINISTRATION.—HIS FAMOUS TOUR.— INJURIOUS TO HIS ADMINISTRATION.—REPUBLICANS VICTORIOUS IN ELECTIONS THROUGHOUT THE NORTH.—DEMOCRATS VICTORIOUS THROUGHOUT THE SOUTH.— HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES REPUBLICAN BY THREE TO ONE.—PRESIDENT DEPRESSED.—IMPORTANCE OF THE ELECTIONS OF 1866.—NEGRO SUFFRAGE.—THE DIFFICULTY OF IMPOSING IT ON THE SOUTH.—FOURTEENTH AMENDMENT THE TEST FOR RECONSTRUCTION.
SECOND SESSION THIRTY-NINTH CONGRESS.—PRESIDENT'S MESSAGE.—REPEATS THE FORMER RECOMMENDATIONS.—MISCHIEVOUS EFFECT PRODUCED IN THE SOUTH. —THE TEN CONFEDERATES STATES VOTE ON THE FOURTEENTH AMENDMENT.— REJECTED BY EVERY ONE.—DEFIANCE TO CONGRESS.—MADNESS OF THE SOUTHERN LEADERS.—DETERMINATION OF THE NORTH.—NEW PLAN OF RECONSTRUCTION.— BILL REPORTED BY MR. STEVENS.—SOUTH DIVIDED INTO MILITARY DISTRICTS.— BILL ELABORATELY DEBATED.—VIEWS OF LEADING MEMBERS.—EXTRACTS FROM SPEECHES.—BLAINE AMENDMENT.—DEBATED IN THE HOUSE.—OPPOSED BY MR. STEVENS.—REJECTED IN THE HOUSE.—ADOPTED IN DIFFERENT FORM IN THE SENATE.—FINALLY INCORPORATED IN RECONSTRUCTION BILL.—PRESIDENT VETOES THE BILL.—PASSED OVER HIS VETO.—CHARACTER OF THE MEASURE.—THE SOUTH FORCES THE ADOPTION OF NEGRO SUFFRAGE.—NOT CONTEMPLATED ORIGINALLY BY THE NORTH.—CHARACTER OF THE STRUGGLE.—EXECUTIVE PATRONAGE.— PRESIDENT'S POLICY TO BE SUSTAINED BY IT.—THE POWER OF REMOVAL.—EARLY DECISION OF THE GOVERNMENT.—VIEWS OF MR. MADISON AND MR. WEBSTER.—OF HAMILTON AND OF WASHINGTON.—REPUBLICAN LEADERS DETERMINED TO CURTAIL THE POWER.—MR. WILLIAMS INTRODUCES TENURE OF OFFICE BILL.—SPEECHES OF EDMUNDS, HOWE, AND OTHERS.—PRESIDENT VETOES THE BILL.—PASSED OVER HIS VETO.—DOUBTFUL CHARACTER OF THE MEASURE.—REPUBLICAN DISTRUST OF IT.—NEW STATES IN THE NORTH-WEST.—MR. LINCOLN'S POLICY SHOWN IN THE CASE OF NEVADA.—INCREASE OF FREE TERRITORIES.—NEBRASKA AND COLORADO APPLY FOR ADMISSION.—PRESIDENT JOHNSON VETOES THE BILL.—ADMISSION OF COLORADO PREVENTED.—POWER OF PARDON AND AMNESTY BY PROCLAMATION TAKEN FROM THE PRESIDENT.—SCANDALS REPORTED.
MEETING OF FORTIETH CONGRESS, MARCH 4TH, 1867.—CONSPICUOUS CHANGES IN SENATE AND HOUSE.—CAMERON, CONKLING, MORTON, IN SENATE.—BUTLER, PETERS, BECK, IN HOUSE.—MR. JAMES BROOKS OBJECTS TO THE ORGANIZATION OF THE HOUSE.—SEVENTEEN STATES ASSENT.—THE CLERK DECLINES TO RECEIVE HIS MOTION.—THIRD ELECTION OF MR. COLFAX AS SPEAKER.—SUPPLEMENTARY RECONSTRUCTION ACT.—THE PRESIDENT'S PROMPT VETO.—PASSED OVER HIS OBJECTIONS.—CONGRESS ADJOURNS TO JULY 3D.—SECOND SUPPLEMENTARY ACT OF RECONSTRUCTION.—ANOTHER VETO.—OMINOUS WORDS FROM THE PRESIDENT.— REPUBLICANS DISQUIETED.—CONGRESS ADJOURNS TO NOVEMBER.—THE SOUTH PLACED UNDER MILITARY GOVERNMENT.—PRACTICAL RECONSTRUCTION.— CONVENTIONS IN THE SOUTHERN STATES.—CONSTITUTIONS SUBMITTED TO THE PEOPLE.—SECOND SESSION FORTIETH CONGRESS.—AGGRESSIVE MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT.—SOUTHERN STATES RE-ADMITTED TO REPRESENTATION.—ANOTHER VETO FROM THE PRESIDENT.—RECONSTRUCTION CONTEST PRACTICALLY ENDED.— REPRESENTATIVES AND SENATORS FROM THE SOUTH.—MISTAKES OF FORMER SLAVE-HOLDERS.—UNFORTUNATE BLUNDERS.—PECULIAR MENTAL QUALITIES OF PRESIDENT JOHNSON.—THE VETO POWER.—ITS INFREQUENT USE BY EARLIER PRESIDENTS.—EXAMPLE OF JACKSON.—FOLLOWED BY HIS SUCCESSORS.— DIFFERENCE BETWEEN DEMOCRATIC AND WHIG PRESIDENTS.—MR. TYLER AND MR. JOHNSON.—RATIFICATION OF THE FOURTEENTH AMENDMENT.—PROCLAIMED BY MR. SEWARD.—IMPORTANCE OF ITS PROVISIONS.—SINGULAR HOSTILITY OF THE DEMOCRATS.—A NEW CHARTER OF FREEDOM.—SWEEPS AWAY OPPRESSION AND EVERY DENIAL OF JUSTICE.—CREDIT OF IT CONCEDED TO THE REPUBLICANS.
GOVERNMENT FINANCES AFTER THE WAR.—DIFFICULTIES OF THE SITUATION.— INTREPIDITY OF CONGRESS.—ITS GREAT TASK.—$600,000,000 BILL.—SUMMARY OF PUBLIC DEBT, DECEMBER, 1865.—FUNDED AND FLOATING OBLIGATIONS.— AGGREGATE DEBT, JANUARY 1, 1866, $2,730,491,745.—$1,600,000,000 FLOATING OBLIGATIONS.—MR. McCULLOCH'S ESTIMATES.—HIS FINANCIAL POLICY.—CONTRACTION THE LEADING FEATURE.—WAYS AND MEANS COMMITTEE REPORT A FUNDING BILL.—HOUSE DEBATES THEREON.—SENATE DEBATE.—FINAL PASSAGE.—REVENUE LAWS IN CONGRESS.—CONTRASTED WITH BRITISH PARLIAMENT.—LARGE REDUCTION OF INTERNAL TAXES.—SECOND REDUCTION OF INTERNAL TAXES.—CONTRACTION POLICY OPPRESSIVE.—INDIRECT RELIEF.— HOSTILITY RAPIDLY INCREASES.—PROGRESS OF FUNDING BILL.—REPEAL OF CONTRACTION BILL.—ITS EVIL EFFECTS.—FURTHER REDUCTION OF INTERNAL TAXES.—FINANCIAL ACHIEVEMENTS OF THE GOVERNMENT.—LARGE REDUCTION OF NATIONAL DEBT.—VALUABLE TREASURY OFFICIALS.—PURCHASE OF ALASKA.— PRICE, $7,200,000 IN GOLD COIN.—PURCHASE AT FIRST UNPOPULAR.— RESISTANCE IN THE HOUSE.—MR. WASHBURNE AND GENERAL BUTLER OPPOSE.— TREATY ABLY SUSTAINED BY GENERAL BANKS.—INTERESTING DEBATE.—MANY PARTICIPANTS.—POWER OF THE HOUSE RESPECTING TREATIES.—CHRONIC CONTROVERSY.—THE BILL PASSED.—OPINION OF JUDGE McLEAN.—OF MR. JEFFERSON.—EXTENT OF ALASKA.—VALUE OF IT.—ITS ELEMENTS OF WEALTH.— FIRST NORTHERN TERRITORY ACQUIRED BY THE UNITED STATES.—NEGOTIATION ABLY CONDUCTED BY MR. SEWARD.
IMPEACHMENT OF PRESIDENT JOHNSON.—FIRST MOVEMENT THERETO.—MR. ASHLEY'S GRAVE CHARGES.—GENERAL GRANT'S IMPORTANT TESTIMONY.— JUDICIARY COMMITTEE DIVIDE.—IMPEACHMENT DEFEATED, DECEMBER, 1867.— ANALYSIS OF VOTE.—SUSPENSION OF MR. STANTON.—TENURE-OF-OFFICE LAW.— SENATE DISAPPROVES MR. STANTON'S SUSPENSION.—MR. STANTON RESTORED AS SECRETARY OF WAR.—AN UNWELCOME CABINET OFFICER.—PREVIOUS VIEWS OF LEADING STATESMEN.—PRESIDENT'S ANOMALOUS SITUATION.—HE REMOVES MR. STANTON.—APPOINTS LORENZO THOMAS Ad Interim.—SENATE CONDEMNS THE PRESIDENT'S COURSE.—IMPEACHMENT MOVED IN THE HOUSE.—EXCITING DEBATE. —IMPEACHMENT CARRIED.—MANAGERS APPOINTED.—ARTICLES OF IMPEACHMENT PRESENTED TO THE SENATE.—THOMAS EWING NOMINATED FOR SECRETARY OF WAR. —NOT CONFIRMED.—COURT OF IMPEACHMENT.—THE CHIEF JUSTICE.—THE PRESIDENT'S COUNSEL.—JUDGE CURTIS.—MR. EVARTS.—MR. GROESBECK.—THE PRESIDENT'S ANSWER.—GENERAL BUTLER'S ARGUMENT.—TESTIMONY PRESENTED BY MANAGERS.—ARGUMENT OF JUDGE CURTIS.—THE PRESIDENT'S WITNESSES.— REJECTION OF TESTIMONY BY SENATE.—TESTIMONY CONCLUDED.—ARGUMENT OF GENERAL LOGAN.—OF MR. BOUTWELL.—OF MR. NELSON.—OF MR. GROESBECK.— OF THADDEUS STEVENS.—OF THOMAS WILLIAMS.—OF MR. EVARTS.—OF MR. STANBERY.—OF MR. BINGHAM.—TWENTY-NINE SENATORS FILE THEIR OPINIONS.— FIRST VOTE ON LAST ARTICLE.—GENERAL INTEREST AND EXCITEMENT.—THE RESULT.—ACQUITTAL OF PRESIDENT.—VIEWS OF REPUBLICANS.—CONDEMNATION OF CERTAIN SENATORS.—SUBSEQUENT CHANGE OF OPINION.—THE PRESIDENT UNWISELY IMPEACHED.—ACTUAL OFFENSES OF THE PRESIDENT.—THEIR GRAVITY. —IMPEACHED ON OTHER GROUNDS.—THE REAL TEST.—NATURE OF AN IMPEACHABLE OFFENSE.—LAWYERS DIFFER.—EFFECT ON MR. STANTON.—HIS POLITICAL ATTITUDE.—HIS RESIGNATION.—APPOINTED SUPREME JUSTICE.—HIS DEATH.— GENERAL SCHOFIELD SECRETARY OF WAR.—MR. EVARTS ATTORNEY-GENERAL.
PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION OF 1868.—REPUBLICAN NATIONAL CONVENTION AT CHICAGO.—GENERAL GRANT THE CLEARLY INDICATED CANDIDATE OF HIS PARTY.— CONTEST FOR THE VICE-PRESIDENCY.—WADE, COLFAX, FENTON, WILSON, CURTIN. —SPIRITED BALLOTING.—COLFAX NOMINATED.—PLATFORM.—DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL CONVENTION.—MEETS IN NEW YORK, JULY 4.—NUMEROUS CANDIDATES. —GEORGE H. PENDLETON MOST PROMINENT.—AN ORGANIZED MOVEMENT FOR CHIEF JUSTICE CHASE.—HIS ALLIANCE WITH THE DEMOCRACY.—HIS EAGERNESS FOR THE NOMINATION.—HIS FRIENDLY RELATIONS WITH VALLANDINGHAM.—PRESIDENT JOHNSON.—SEEKS DEMOCRATIC INDORSEMENT.—MR. AUGUST BELMONT'S OPENING SPEECH.—HORATIO SEYMOUR PRESIDENT OF THE CONVENTION.—HIS ARRAIGNMENT OF THE REPUBLICAN PARTY.—CHARACTER OF HIS MIND.—THE DEMOCRATIC PLATFORM.—FAVORS PAYING THE PUBLIC DEBT IN PAPER MONEY.—DECLARES THE RECONSTRUCTION ACTS TO BE USURPATIONS.—WADE HAMPTON'S PROMINENCE.— VARIOUS NAMES PRESENTED FOR THE PRESIDENCY.—VARYING FORTUNES OF CANDIDATES.—SEYMOUR NOMINATED.—THE VICE-PRESIDENCY.—FRANK BLAIR NOMINATED BY ACCLAMATION.—AGGRESSIVE CAMPAIGN OF BOTH SIDES.—MR. SEYMOUR'S POPULAR TOUR.—FINAL RESULT.—GENERAL GRANT'S ELECTION.
REPUBLICAN VICTORY OF 1868 ANALYZED.—MR. SEYMOUR'S STRENGTH UNEXPECTEDLY GREAT.—ASTOUNDING DEFECTION OF CERTAIN STATES.— DEMOCRATIC VICTORY IN NEW YORK, NEW JERSEY, AND OREGON.—EVIL OMENS.— DEMOCRATIC VICTORY IN LOUISIANA.—WON BY FRAUD AND VIOLENCE.—THE FIGURES EXAMINED.—ACTION OF CONGRESS THEREON.—FRAUD SUSPECTED IN GEORGIA.—DEMOCRATIC DUTY UNPERFORMED.—IMPARTIAL SUFFRAGE.—VARIOUS PROPOSITIONS.—AMENDMENT TO THE CONSTITUTION.—MR. HENDERSON OF MISSOURI.—MR. STEWART OF NEVADA.—MR. GARRETT DAVIS.—PROCEEDINGS IN THE HOUSE.—SPEECH OF MR. BOUTWELL.—ANSWERED BY MR. BECK AND MR. ELDRIDGE.—PASSAGE OF AMENDMENT BY HOUSE.—ACTION THEREON IN SENATE.— AMENDMENT OF MR. WILSON.—PROPOSITION OF MR. MORTON AND MR. BUCKALEW.— DISAGREEMENT OF THE TWO BRANCHES.—CONFERENCE COMMITTEE.—FIFTEENTH AMENDMENT REPORTED.—PUBLIC OPINION IN THE UNITED STATES.—FOURTEENTH AMENDMENT NOW MODIFIED.—ITS EFFECT AND POTENCY LESSENED.—ITS FAILURE TO REMOVE EVILS.—GREAT VALUE OF THE THREE AMENDMENTS.—THEIR ASSURED ENFORCEMENT.—HONOR TO THEIR AUTHORS.—LESSON TAUGHT BY MR. LINCOLN.— ITS SIGNIFICANCE.
INAUGURATION OF GENERAL GRANT FOR FIRST TERM.—POPULAR ENTHUSIASM.— HIS INAUGURAL ADDRESS.—APPROVES FIFTEENTH AMENDMENT.—ANNOUNCEMENT OF HIS CABINET.—GENERAL SURPRISE.—E. B. WASHBURNE.—JACOB D. COX.—E. ROCKWOOD HOAR.—JOHN A. J. CRESWELL.—ALEXANDER T. STEWART.— INELIGIBLE.—NAME WITHDRAWN.—GEORGE S. BOUTWELL APPOINTED.—ADOLPH E. BORIE.—HAMILTON FISH.—GEORGE M. ROBESON.—GENERAL SCHOFIELD.—GENERAL RAWLINS.—GENERAL BELKNAP.—GENERAL OF THE ARMY.—THE SUCCESSION.— SHERMAN APPOINTED.—LIEUTENANT-GENERAL.—SHERIDAN APPOINTED.—HALLECK. —MEADE.—THOMAS.—HANCOCK.—CONGRESS CONVENES.—ELECTION OF SPEAKER.— MR. BLAINE CHOSEN.—MR. KERR THE DEMOCRATIC CANDIDATE.—VARIOUS MEMBERS.—MR. WHEELER.—MR. POTTER.—JUDGE NOAH DAVIS.—GENERAL SLOCUM. —MR. HALE.—THOMAS FITCH.—THE PENNSYLVANIA DELEGATION.—MR. S. S. COX.—MR. GEORGE F. HOAR.—NEW ERA POLITICALLY UNDER PRESIDENT GRANT.— THE OPPOSITION PARTY IN THE HOUSE.—ITS STRONG LEADERS.—THEIR MANLY CHARACTER.
SENATE IN THE FORTY-FIRST CONGRESS.—HANNIBAL HAMLIN ELECTED FOR THE FOURTH TERM.—MATTHEW H. CARPENTER.—HIS DOUBLE LOAD OF WORK.—CARL SCHURZ.—ALLEN G. THURMAN.—WILLIAM G. BROWNLOW.—THOMAS FRANCIS BAYARD.—GOVERNOR FENTON.—WILLIAM A. BUCKINGHAM.—DANIEL D. PRATT.— JOHN SCOTT.—JOHN P. STOCKTON.—SOUTHERN REPRESENTATION COMPLETE.— CHARACTER OF SENATORS AND REPRESENTATIVES.—UNJUST ABUSE.—SOUTHERN RESISTANCE TO CARPET-BAG RULE.—ADMISSION OF A COLORED SENATOR.—HIRAM B. REVELS OF MISSISSIPPI.—SUCCESSOR TO JEFFERSON DAVIS.—THE MORAL OF IT.—PRESIDENT GRANT AND THE TENURE-OF-OFFICE ACT.—HOUSE VOTES TO REPEAL THE ACT.—DELAY IN SENATE.—POSITION OF MR. TRUMBULL, MR. EDMUNDS, AND MR. SCHURZ.—DISAGREEMENT BETWEEN SENATE AND HOUSE.— CONFERENCE COMMITTEE.—PRACTICAL REPEAL OF THE ACT.—DEATH OF WILLIAM PITT FESSENDEN.—HIS CHARACTER.
EVENTS OF INTEREST.—IN DIPLOMACY AND RECONSTRUCTION.—THE DOMINICAN REPUBLIC.—ANNEXATION TREATY.—DEFEATED BY SENATE.—PRESIDENT GRANT RENEWS THE EFFORT.—COMMISSION SENT TO SAN DOMINGO.—THEIR REPORT.— OPPOSITION OF MR. SUMNER.—THE PRESIDENT AND MR. SUMNER—RECONSTRUCTION MEASURES COMPLETED.—VIRGINIA, MISSISSIPPI AND TEXAS.—RE-ADMITTED TO REPRESENTATION.—PECULIAR CASE OF GEORGIA.—HER RECONSTRUCTION POSTPONED.—LAST STATE RE-ADMITTED TO REPRESENTATION.—FIFTEENTH AMENDMENT.—ADOPTED.—-PROCLAIMED MARCH 30, 1870.—PRESIDENT'S MESSAGE. —COURSE OF THE SOUTHERN STATES.—HOSTILITY TO RECONSTRUCTION GOVERNMENTS.—DETERMINATION TO BREAK THEM DOWN.—MILITARY INTERPOSITION OF THE GOVERNMENT.—KU-KLUX-KLANS.—VIOLENCE IN THE SOUTH.—LEGISLATION TO PREVENT IT.—DIFFICULT TASK.—MOTIVE INSPIRING THE SOUTH.—CARPET- BAG IMMIGRATION.—COTTON-REARING ORIGINAL MOTIVE.—POLITICAL CONSEQUENCE.—DISABILITIES IN THE SOUTH.—CAUSE THEREOF.— RESPONSIBILITY OF SOUTHERN STATES.—ORIGINAL MISTAKE OF THE SOUTH—THE AIMS OF THE NORTH.
RESENTMENT AGAINST ENGLAND.—POPULAR FEELING IN THE UNITED STATES.— CONDUCT OF THE PALMERSTON MINISTRY.—HOSTILE SPEECHES IN THE HOUSE OF COMMONS.—MR. ROEBUCK.—LORD ROBERT CECIL.—CONDUCT OF THE TORIES.—OF THE LIBERALS.—CRITICISMS OF THE BRITISH PRESS.—SOUTH COMPARED WITH IRELAND.—UNITED STATES DEMANDS COMPENSATION.—REFUSED BY ENGLAND.— NEGOTIATIONS.—JOHNSON-CLARENDON TREATY.—REJECTED BY SENATE.— CHARACTER OF TREATY.—SPEECH OF MR. SUMNER.—POSITION OF PRESIDENT GRANT.—NEGOTIATION CLOSED.—ENGLAND ASKS THAT IT BE RE-OPENED.—JOINT HIGH COMMISSION.—ITS DELIBERATIONS.—ITS BASIS OF SETTLEMENT.—GENEVA AWARD.—PRIVATE CLAIMS ADJUSTED.—THE SAN JUAN QUESTION.—ITS FINAL SETTLEMENT.—HON. GEORGE BANCROFT.
OPENING FORTY-SECOND CONGRESS.—DEPOSITION OF CHARLES SUMNER FROM CHAIRMANSHIP OF FOREIGN RELATIONS.—EXCITING DEBATE.—GRAVE INJUSTICE TO MR. SUMNER.—DEMOCRATIC SENATORS OPPOSE THE ACT.—NEW SENATORS.— MATT W. RANSOM.—FRANK P. BLAIR, JUN.—HENRY G. DAVIS—POWELL CLAYTON. —ORGANIZATION OF THE HOUSE.—MR. BLAINE RE-ELECTED SPEAKER.—DEMOCRATS CONTROL MORE THEN ONE-THIRD OF HOUSE.—VALUABLE ACCESSIONS TO MEMBERSHIP.—POLITICAL DISABILITIES.—REMOVED FROM INDIVIDUALS.— GENERAL AMNESTY PROCLAIMED.—CIVIL-RIGHTS BILL.—COURSE OF COLORED MEMBERS OF THE HOUSE.—THEIR JUSTICE AND MAGNANIMITY.
PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION OF 1872.—LIBERAL REPUBLICAN MOVEMENT.—ITS ORIGIN.—DIVISION IN MISSOURI.—GRATZ BROWN, BLAIR, SCHURZ.—CONTEST IN NEW YORK.—GREELEY, FENTON, CONKLING.—CONKLING'S TRIUMPH.—LIBERAL REPUBLICAN CONVENTION.—MEETS AT CINCINNATI.—NOMINATION OF MR. GREELEY.—ADJUSTMENT OF TARIFF ISSUES.—CHAGRIN OF FREE-TRADERS AND DEMOCRATS.—MR. GREELEY'S LETTER OF ACCEPTANCE.—NATIONAL REPUBLICAN CONVENTION.—MEETS IN PHILADELPHIA.—RENOMINATES GENERAL GRANT.— HENRY WILSON NOMINATED FOR VICE-PRESIDENT.—DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL CONVENTION.—MEETS IN BALTIMORE.—ENDORSES GREELEY AND BROWN.—ACCEPTS THE CINCINNATI PLATFORM.—MR. GREELEY'S LETTER OF ACCEPTANCE.—CONTEST BETWEEN GRANT AND GREELEY.—CHARACTER OF MR. GREELEY.—HIS STRENGTH AND HIS WEAKNESS.—NORTH CAROLINA ELECTION.—CLAIMED BY BOTH SIDES.— FAVORABLE TO REPUBLICANS.—SEPTEMBER ELECTIONS.—REPUBLICAN GAINS.— NOMINATION OF O'CONNOR AND ADAMS.—MR. GREELEY'S WESTERN TOUR.—OCTOBER ELECTIONS.—STRONG NOMINATION FOR STATE OFFICERS.—ENORMOUS MAJORITIES FOR GENERAL GRANT.—HIS OVERWHELMING ELECTION.—DEATH OF MR. GREELEY.
PRESIDENT GRANT'S SECOND INAUGURATION.—COMPLAINS OF PARTISAN ABUSE.— ORGANIZATION OF FORTY-THIRD CONGRESS.—PROMINENT MEMBERS OF SENATE AND HOUSE.—DEATH OF CHARLES SUMNER.—IMPRESSIVE FUNERAL CEREMONIES.— SINGULAR REMINISCENCE BY MR. DAVIS.—SPEECH BY MR. LAMAR.—CAREER OF ALEXANDER H. STEPHENS.—GOVERNMENT OF DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA.—RADICAL CHANGE.—GREAT IMPROVEMENT.—ALEXANDER R. SHEPHERD.—REPUBLICAN REVERSE, 1874.—DEMOCRATIC HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES.—MICHAEL C. KERR, SPEAKER.—MEMBERS OF SENATE AND HOUSE.—RADICAL CHANGES.—ANDREW JOHNSON IN THE SENATE.—HIS SPEECH.—DIES AT HIS HOME IN TENNESSEE.— CONDITION OF THE SOUTH.—AMNESTY.—AMENDMENT TO EXCEPT JEFFERSON DAVIS. —BILL DEFEATED.
THE PUBLIC CREDIT.—FIRST LAW ENACTED UNDER PRESIDENT GRANT.— DEMOCRATIC OPPOSITION.—THURMAN, GARRETT DAVIS, BAYARD.—PRESIDENT GRANT'S FIRST MESSAGE.—FUNDING BILLS DISCUSSED.—ACTION OF BOTH HOUSES.—DEBATES.—FURTHER REDUCTION OF REVENUE.—PREMIUM ON GOLD.— MEETING OF FORTY-SECOND CONGRESS.—FINANCIAL DEBATES.—FINANCIAL PANIC OF 1873.—FORTY-THIRD CONGRESS MEETS.—PRESIDENT GRANT'S POSITION.— ABOLITION OF MOIETIES.—SPECIE PAYMENTS.—RESUMPTION ACT.—SPECIAL MESSAGE OF THE PRESIDENT.—ADMISSION OF COLORADO.—DEATH OF SPEAKER KERR.—SAMUEL J. RANDALL HIS SUCCESSOR.
PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION OF 1876.—REPUBLICAN CANDIDATES FOR NOMINATION.— CONVENTION AT CINCINNATI, JUNE 14, 1876.—REPUBLICAN PLATFORM.— BALLOTING.—NOMINATION OF HAYES AND WHEELER.—DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL CONVENTION.—SAMUEL J. TILDEN THE PRINCIPAL CANDIDATE.—HIS CAREER.— OTHER DEMOCRATIC CANDIDATES.—TILDEN AND HENDRICKS NOMINATED.— DEMOCRATIC PLATFORM.—THE CANVASS.—THE RESULT.—DOUBTFUL STATE.— POPULAR EXCITEMENT.—DISPUTE IN LOUISIANA, FLORIDA, SOUTH CAROLINA.— PRESIDENT GRANT'S COURSE.—A PORTENTOUS QUESTION.—ELECTORAL COMMISSION.—MEMBERS.—QUESTIONS BEFORE THEM.—DECISION.—HAYES AND WHEELER ELECTED.—SUBSEQUENT INVESTIGATION.—POTTER COMMISSION.— DISCOVERY OF TELEGRAMS.—ATTEMPTS AT BRIBERY IN THE SOUTH.
INAUGURATION OF PRESIDENT HAYES.—HIS SOUTHERN POLICY.—APPOINTMENT OF HIS CABINET.—ORGANIZATION OF SENATE AND HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES.—RE- ELECTION OF SPEAKER RANDALL.—SILVER DISCUSSION.—COINAGE OF SILVER DOLLAR.—REPORT OF SILVER COMMISSION.—DISCUSSION ON SILVER QUESTION.— PRODUCT OF SILVER AND GOLD.—THIRTY-TWO YEARS OF EACH.—NAVIGATION INTERESTS.—LOSS OF GROUND BY THE UNITED STATES.—REASON THEREFOR.— HOW CAN IT BE REGAINED?
THE QUESTION OF THE FISHERIES.—ORIGIN OF AMERICAN RIGHTS.—EARLY DISPUTES.—TREATY OF 1782.—TREATY OF GHENT.—TREATY OF 1818.— RECIPROCITY TREATY.—JOINT HIGH COMMISSION.—FISHERIES QUESTION TO BE ARBITRATED.—SELECTION OF ARBITRATORS.—NEGOTIATION FOR RECIPROCITY TREATY.—THE HALIFAX AWARD.—ITS LARGE AMOUNT.—DISSATISFACTION.— ACTION OF SENATE.—CORRESPONDENCE WITH THE BRITISH GOVERNMENT.—MR. EVARTS AND LORD SALISBURY.
FORTY-SIXTH CONGRESS.—EXTRA SESSION.—ORGANIZATION OF HOUSE.—OF SENATE.—LEADING MEN IN EACH.—DEMOCRATIC GAIN IN INFLUENCE.—CONTROL OF BOTH SENATE AND HOUSE.—DEATH OF SENATOR CHANDLER.—QUESTION OF CIVIL SERVICE REFORM.—THE PATRONAGE OF THE GOVERNMENT.—ITS ILLEGITIMATE INFLUENCE.—THE QUESTION OF CHINESE LABOR.—LEGISLATION THEREON.
PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION OF 1880.—THIRD TERM SUGGESTED.—CHICAGO CONVENTION.—EXCITING CONTEST.—MANY BALLOTINGS.—NOMINATION OF GENERAL GARFIELD.—DEMOCRATIC CONVENTION.—NOMINATION OF GENERAL HANCOCK.—THE CONTEST.—THE RESULT.—THE SOLID SOUTH.—ITS MEANING.—ITS EFFECT.—ITS END.—REVIEW OF THE TWENTY YEARS.—PROGRESS OF THE PEOPLE.—MAJESTY OF THE REPUBLIC.
LIST OF STEEL PORTRAITS
ULYSSES S. GRANT ANDREW JOHNSON HANNIBAL HAMLIN SCHUYLER COLFAX HENRY WILSON WILLIAM A. WHEELER ALEXANDER H. STEPHENS SAMUEL J. RANDALL LUCIUS Q. C. LAMAR THOMAS F. BAYARD BENJAMIN H. HILL AUGUSTUS H. GARLAND JAMES B. BECK B. K. BRUCE H. R. REVELS JAMES T. RAPIER JOHN R. LYNCH J. H. RAINEY ALLEN G. THURMAN TIMOTHY O. HOWE BENJAMIN F. BUTLER ROSCOE CONKLING GEORGE P. EDMUNDS MATTHEW HALE CARPENTER WILLIAM A. BUCKINGHAM RUTHERFORD B. HAYES JAMES A. GARFIELD
TWENTY YEARS OF CONGRESS
Abraham Lincoln expired at twenty-two minutes after seven o'clock on the morning of April 15, 1865. Three hours later, in the presence of all the members of the Cabinet except Mr. Seward who lay wounded and bleeding in his own home, the oath of office, as President of the United States, was administered to Andrew Johnson by Chief Justice Chase. The simple but impressive ceremony was performed in Mr. Johnson's lodgings at the Kirkwood Hotel; and besides the members of the Cabinet, who were present in their official character, those senators who had remained in Washington since the adjournment of Congress were called in as witnesses. While the death of Mr. Lincoln was still unknown to the majority of the citizens of the Republic, his successor was installed in office, and the administration of the Federal Government was radically changed. It was especially fortunate that the Vice-President was at the National Capital. He had arrived but five days before, and was intending to leave for his home in Tennessee within a few hours. His prompt investiture with the Chief Executive authority of the Nation preserved order, maintained law, and restored confidence to the people. With the defeat and disintegration of the armies of the Confederacy, and with the approaching disbandment of the armies of the Union, constant watchfulness was demanded of the National Executive. It is a striking tribute to the strength of the Constitution and of the Government that the orderly administration of affairs was not interrupted by a tragedy which in many countries might have been the signal for a bloody revolution.
The new President confronted grave responsibilities. The least reflecting among those who took part in the mighty struggle perceived that the duties devolved upon the Government by victory—if less exacting and less critical than those imposed by actual war—were more delicate in their nature, and required statesmanship of a different character. The problem of reconstructing the Union, and adapting its varied interests to its changed condition, demanded the highest administrative ability. Many of the questions involved were new, and, if only for that reason, perplexing. No experience of our own had established precedents; none in other countries afforded even close analogies. Rebellions and civil wars had, it is true, been frequent, but they had been chiefly among peoples consolidated under one government, ruled in all their affairs, domestic and external, by one central power. The overthrow of armed resistance in such cases was the end of trouble, and political society and public order were rapidly re-formed under the restraint which the triumphant authority was so easily able to impose.
A prompt adjustment after the manner of consolidated governments was not practicable under our Federal system. In the division of functions between the Nation and the State, those that reach and affect the citizen in his every-day life belong principally to the State. The tenure of land is guaranteed and regulated by State Law; the domestic relations of husband and wife, parent and child, guardian and ward, together with the entire educational system, are left exclusively to the same authority, as is also the preservation of the public peace by proper police-systems—the National Government intervening only on the call of the State when the State's power is found inadequate to the suppression of disorder. These leading functions of the State were left in full force under the Confederate Government; and the Confederate Government being now destroyed, and the States that composed it being under the complete domination of the armies of the Union, the whole framework of society was in confusion, if not indeed in chaos. To restore the States to their normal relations to the Union, to enable them to organize governments in harmony with the fundamental changes wrought by the war, was the embarrassing task which the Administration of President Johnson was compelled to meet on the very threshold of its existence.
The successful issue of these unprecedented and complicated difficulties depended in great degree upon the character and temper of the Executive. Many wise men regarded it as a fortunate circumstance that Mr. Lincoln's successor was from the South, though a much larger number in the North found in this fact a source of disquietude. Mr. Johnson had the manifest disadvantage of not possessing any close or intimate knowledge of the people of the Loyal States. It was feared moreover, that his relations with the ruling spirits of the South in the exciting period preceding the war specially unfitted him for harmonious co-operation with them in the pending exigencies.
The character and career of Mr. Johnson were anomalous and in many respects contradictory. By birth he belonged to that large class in the South known as "poor whites,"—a class scarcely less despised by the slave-holding aristocracy than were the human chattels themselves. Born in North Carolina, and bred to the trade of a tailor, he reached his fifteenth year before he was taught even to read. In his eighteenth year he migrated to Tennessee, and established himself in that rich upland region on the eastern border of the State, where by altitude the same agricultural conditions are developed that characterize the land which lies several degrees further North. Specially adapted to the cereals, the grasses, and the fruits of Southern Pennsylvania and Ohio, East Tennessee could not employ slave-labor with the profit which it brought in the rich cotton-fields of the neighboring lowlands, and the result was that the population contained a large majority of whites.
Owing much to a wise marriage, pursuing his trade with skill and industry, Johnson gained steadily in knowledge and in influence. Ambitious, quick to learn, honest, necessarily frugal, he speedily became a recognized leader of the class to which he belonged. Before he had attained his majority he was chosen to an important municipal office, and at twenty-two he was elected mayor of his town. Thenceforward his promotion was rapid. At twenty-seven he was sent to the Legislature of his State; and in 1840, when he was in his thirty-second year, he was nominated for the office of Presidential elector and canvassed that State in the interest of Mr. Van Buren. Three years later he was chosen representative in Congress where he served ten years. He was then nominated for governor, and in the elections of 1853 and 1855 defeated successively two of the most popular Whigs in Tennessee, Gustavus A. Henry and Meredith P. Gentry. In 1857 he was promoted to the Senate of the United States, where he was serving at the outbreak of the civil war.
While Mr. Johnson had been during his entire political life a member of the Democratic party, and had attained complete control in his State, the Southern leaders always distrusted him. Though allied to the interests of slavery and necessarily drawn to its defense, his instincts, his prejudices, his convictions were singularly strong on the side of the free people. His sympathies with the poor were acute and demonstrative—leading him to the advocacy of measures which in a wide and significant sense were hostile to slavery. In the early part of his career as a representative in Congress, he warmly espoused, if indeed he did not originate, the homestead policy. In support of that policy he followed a line of argument and illustration absolutely and irreconcilably antagonistic to the interests of the slave system as those interests were understood by the mass of Southern Democratic leaders.
The bestowment of our public domain in quarter-sections (a hundred and sixty acres of land) upon the actual settler, on the simple condition that he should cultivate it and improve it as his home, was a more effective blow against the spread of slavery in the Territories than any number of legal restrictions or provisos of the kind proposed by Mr. Wilmot. Slavery could not be established with success except upon the condition of large tracts of land for the master, and the exclusion of the small farmer from contact and from competition. The example of the latter's manual industry and his consequent thrift and prosperity, must ultimately prove fatal to the entire slave system. It may not have been Mr. Johnson's design to injure the institution of slavery by the advocacy of the homestead policy; but such advocacy was nevertheless hostile, and this consideration did not stay his hand or change his action.
Mr. Johnson' mode of urging and defending the homestead policy was at all times offensive to the mass of his Democratic associates of the South, many of whom against their wishes were compelled to support the measure on its final passage, for fear of giving offense to their landless white constituents, and in the still more pressing fear, that if Johnson should be allowed to stand alone in upholding the measure, he would acquire a dangerous ascendency over that large element in the Southern population. Johnson spoke with ill-disguised hatred of "an inflated and heartless landed aristocracy," not applying the phrase especially to the South, but making an argument which tended to sow dissension in that section. He declared that "the withholding of the use of the soil from the actual cultivator is violative of the principles essential to human existence," and that when "the violation reaches that point where it can no longer be borne, revolution begins." His argument startlingly outlined a condition such as has long existed in Ireland, and applied it with suggestive force to the possible fate of the South.
He then sketched his own ideal of a rural population, an ideal obviously based on free labor and free institutions. "You make a settler on the domain," said he, "a better citizen of the community. He becomes better qualified to discharge the duties of a freeman. He is, in fact, the representative of his own homestead, and is a man in the enlarged and proper sense of the term. He comes to the ballot-box and votes without the fear or the restraint of some landlord. After the hurry and bustle of election day are over, he mounts his own horse, returns to his own domicil, goes to his own barn, feeds his own stock. His wife turns out and milks their own cows, churns their own butter; and when the rural repast is ready, he and his wife and their children sit down at the same table together to enjoy the sweet product of their own hands, with hearts thankful to God for having cast their lots in this country where the land is made free under the protecting and fostering care of a beneficent Government."
The picture thus presented by Johnson was not the picture of a home in the slave States, and no one knew better than he that it was a home which could not be developed and established amid the surroundings and the influences of slavery. It was a home in the North-West, and not in the South-West. Proceeding in his speech Johnson became still more warmly enamored of his hero on the homestead, and with a tongue that seemed touched with the gift of prophecy he painted him in the possible career of a not distant future. "It has long been near my heart," said he in the House of Representatives in July, 1850, "to see every man in the United States domiciled. Once accomplished, it would create the strongest tie between the citizen and the Government; what a great incentive it would afford to the citizen to obey every call of duty! At the first summons of the note of war you would find him leaving his plow in the half-finished furrow, taking his only horse and converting him into a war-steed: his scythe and sickle would be thrown aside, and with a heart full of valor and patriotism he would rush with alacrity to the standard of his country."
Such appeals for popular support subjected Johnson to the imputation of demagogism, and earned for him the growing hatred of that dangerous class of men in the South who placed the safety of the institution of slavery above the interest and the welfare of the white laborer. But if he was a demagogue, he was always a brave one. In his early political life, when the mere nod of President Jackson was an edict in Tennessee, Johnson did not hesitate to espouse the cause of Hugh L. White when he was a candidate for the Presidency in 1836, nor did he fear to ally himself with John Bell in the famous controversy with Jackson's protege, James K. Polk, in the fierce political struggle of 1834-5. Though he returned to the ranks of the regular Democracy in the contest between Harrison and Van Buren, he was bold enough in 1842 to propose in the Legislature of Tennessee that the apportionment of political power should be made upon the basis of the white population of the State. He saw and keenly felt that a few white men in the cotton section of the State, owning many slaves, were usurping the power and trampling upon the rights of his own constituency, among whom slaves were few in number and white men numerous. Those who are familiar with the savage intolerance which prevailed among the slave-holders can justly measure the degree of moral and physical courage required in any man who would assail their power at a vital point in the framework of a government specially and skilfully devised for their protection.
In all the threats of disunion, in all the plotting and planning for secession which absorbed Southern thought and action between the years 1854 and 1861, Mr. Johnson took no part. He had been absent from Congress during the exciting period when the Missouri Compromise was overthrown; and though, after his return in 1857, he co-operated generally in the measures deemed essential for Southern interests, he steadily declared that a consistent adherence to the Constitution was the one and the only remedy for all the alleged grievances of the slave-holders. It was natural therefore, that when the decisive hour came, and the rash men of the South determined to break up the Government, Johnson should stand firmly by the Union.
Of the twenty-two senators from the eleven States that afterwards composed the Confederacy, Johnson was the only one who honorably maintained his oath to support the Constitution; the only one who did not lend his aid and comfort to the enemies of the Union. He remained in his seat in the Senate, loyal to the Government, and resigned a year after the outbreak of the war (in March, 1862), upon Mr. Lincoln's urgent request that he should accept the important post of Military Governor of Tennessee. His administration of that office and his firm discharge of every duty under circumstances of great exigency and oftentimes of great peril, gave to him an exceptional popularity in all the Loyal States, and led to his selection for the Vice-Presidency in 1864. The national calamity had now suddenly brought him to a larger field of duty, and devolved upon him the weightiest responsibility.
The assassination of Mr. Lincoln naturally produced a wide-spread depression and dread of evil. His position had been one of exceptional strength with the people. By his four years of considerate and successful administration, by his patient and positive trust in the ultimate triumph of the Union—realized at last as he stood on the edge of the grave—he had acquired so complete an ascendancy over the public mind in the Loyal States that any policy matured and announced by him would have been accepted by a vast majority of his countrymen. But the same degree of faith could not attach to Mr. Johnson; although after the first shock of the assassination had subsided, there was a generous revival of trust, or at least of hope, that the great work which had been so faithfully prosecuted for four years would be faithfully carried forward in the same lofty spirit to the same noble ends. The people of the North waited with favorable disposition and yet with balancing judgment and in exacting mood. They had enjoyed abundant opportunity to acquaint themselves with the principles and the opinions of the new President, and confidence in his future policy was not unaccompanied by a sense of uncertainty and indeed by an almost painful suspense as to his mode of solving the great problems before him. As has already been indicated, the more radical Republicans of the North feared that his birth and rearing as a Southern man and his long identification with the supporters of the slave system might blind him to the most sacred duties of philanthropy, while the more conservative but not less loyal or less humane feared that from the personal antagonisms of his own stormy career he might be disposed to deal too harshly with the leaders of the conquered rebellion. The few words which Mr. Johnson had addressed to those present when he took the oath of office were closely scanned and carefully analyzed by the country, even in the stunning grief which Mr. Lincoln's death had precipitated. It was especially noted that he refrained from declaring that he should continue the policy of his predecessor. By those who knew Mr. Johnson's views intimately, the omission was understood to imply that Mr. Lincoln had intended to pursue a more liberal and more generous policy with the rebels than his successor deemed expedient or prudent.
It was known to a few persons that when Mr. Johnson arrived from Fortress Monroe on the morning of April 10, and found the National Capital in a blaze of patriotic excitement over the surrender of Lee's army the day before at Appomattox, he hastened to the White House, and addressed to the unwilling ears of Mr. Lincoln an earnest protest against the indulgent terms conceded by General Grant. Mr. Johnson believed that General Lee should not have been permitted to surrender his sword as a solider of honor, but that General Grant should have received the entire command as prisoners of war, and should have held Lee in confinement until he could receive instructions from the Administration at Washington. The spirit which these views indicated was understood by those who knew Mr. Johnson to be contained, if not expressed, in this declaration of his first address: "As to an indication of any policy which may be pursued by me in the conduct of the Government, I have to say that that must be left for development as the Administration progresses. The message or the declaration must be made by the acts as they transpire. The only assurance I can now give of the future is by reference to the past."
The effect produced upon the public by this speech, which might be regarded as an Inaugural address, was not happy. Besides its evasive character respecting public policies which every observing man noted with apprehension, an unpleasant impression was created by its evasive character respecting Mr. Lincoln. The entire absence of eulogy of the slain President was remarked. There was no mention of his name or of his character or of his office. The only allusion in any way whatever to Mr. Lincoln was Mr. Johnson's declaration that he was "almost overwhelmed by the announcement of the sad event which has so recently occurred." While he found no time to praise one whose praise was on every tongue, he made ample reference to himself and his own past history. Though speaking not more than five minutes, it was noticed that "I" and "my" and "me" were mentioned at least a score of times. A boundless egotism was inferred from the line of his remarks: "My past public life which has been long and laborious has been founded, as I in good conscience believe, upon a great principle of right which lies at the basis of all things." "I must be permitted to say, if I understand the feelings of my own heart, I have long labored to ameliorate and alleviate the condition of the great mass of the American people." "Toil and an honest advocacy of the great principles of free government have been my lot. The duties have been mine, the consequences God's." Senator John P. Hale of New Hampshire, who was present on the occasion, said with characteristic wit, that "Johnson seemed willing to share the glory of his achievements with his Creator, but utterly forgot that Mr. Lincoln had any share of credit in the suppression of the Rebellion."
Three days later (April 18) a delegation of distinguished citizens of Illinois called upon Mr. Johnson under circumstances at once extraordinary and touching. The dead President still lay in the White House. Before the solemn and august procession should leave the National Capital to bear his mortal remains to the State which had loved and honored him, the Illinois delegation called to assure his successor of their respect and their confidence. Governor Oglesby who spoke for his associates, addressed the President in language eminently befitting the occasion. "In the midst of this sadness," said he, "through the oppressive gloom that surrounds us, we look to you and to a brighter future for our country. . . . The record of your past life, familiar to all, your noble efforts to stay the hand of treason and restore our flag to the uttermost bounds of the Republic, give assurance to the great State we represent that we may safely trust the nation's destinies in your hands."
Mr. Johnson responded in a speech of much greater length than his first, embodying a wider range of topics than seemed to be demanded by the proprieties of the occasion. He evidently strove to repair the error of his former address. He now diminished the number of gratulatory allusions to his own career, and made appropriate and affecting reference to his predecessor. He spoke with profound emotion of the tragical termination of Mr. Lincoln's life: "The beloved of all hearts has been assassinated." Pausing thoughtfully he added, "And when we trace this crime to its cause, when we remember the source whence the assassin drew his inspiration, and then look at the result, we stand yet more astounded at this most barbarous, most diabolical act. . . . We can trace its cause through successive steps back to that source which is the spring of all our woes. No one can say that if the perpetrator of this fiendish deed be arrested, he should not undergo the extremest penalty of the law known for crime; none will say that mercy should interpose. But is he alone guilty? Here, gentlemen, you perhaps expect me to present some indication of my future policy. One thing I will say: every era teaches its lesson. The times we live in are not without instruction. The American people must be taught—if they do not already feel—that treason is a crime and must be punished. The Government must be strong not only to protect but to punish. When we turn to the criminal code we find arson laid down as a crime with the appropriate penalty. We find theft and murder denounced as crimes, and their appropriate penalty prescribed; and there, too, we find the last and highest of crimes,—treason. . . . The people must understand that treason is the blackest of crimes and will surely be punished . . . . Let it be engraven on every mind that treason is a crime and traitors shall suffer its penalty. . . . I do not harbor bitter or resentful feelings towards any. . . . When the question of exercising mercy comes before me it will be considered calmly, judicially— remembering that I am the Executive of the Nation. I know men love to have their names spoken of in connection with acts of mercy, and how easy it is to yield to that impulse. But we must never forget that what may be mercy to the individual is cruelty to the State."
This speech was reported by an accomplished stenographer, and was submitted to Mr. Johnson's inspection before publication. It contained a declaration intimating to his hearers, if not explicitly assuring them, that "the policy of Mr. Lincoln in the past shall be my policy in the future." When in reading the report he came to this passage, Mr. Johnson queried whether his words had not been in some degree misapprehended; and while he was engaged with the stenographer in modifying the form of expression, Mr. Preston King of New York, who was constantly by his side as adviser, interposed the suggestion that all reference to the subject be stricken out. To this Mr. Johnson promptly assented. He had undoubtedly gone farther than he intended in speaking to Mr. Lincoln's immediate friends, and the correction—inspired by one holding the radical views of Mr. King—was equivalent to a declaration that the policy of Mr. Lincoln had been more conservative than that which he intended to pursue. By those who knew the character of Mr. Johnson's mind, the ascendancy of Mr. King in his councils, and the retirement of Mr. Seward from the State Department were foregone conclusions. The known moderation of Mr. Seward's views would not consist with the fierce vigor of the new administration as now clearly foreshadowed. Mr. Seward and Mr. King, moreover, were not altogether in harmony in New York; and this was so far recognized by the public that Mr. King's displacement from the Senate by the election of Governor Morgan two years before was universally attributed to the Seward influence skilfully directed by Mr. Thurlow Weed. The resentment felt by Mr. King's friends had been very deep, and the opportunity to gratify it seemed now to be presented.
As soon as the Illinois delegation had retired, the members of the Christian Commission then in session at Washington called upon the President. In reply to their earnest address, he begged them as intelligent men representing the power of the Christian Church, to exert their moral influence "in erecting a standard by which everybody should be taught to believe that treason is the highest crime known to the laws, and that the perpetrator should be visited with the punishment which he deserves." This substantial repetition of the views expressed in his Illinois speech derived significance from the fact that the clergyman who spoke for the Christian Commission (Rev. Dr. Borden of Albany) had expressed the hope in his address to the President that "in the administration of justice, mercy would follow the success of arms."
While the remains of the late President were yet reposing in the National Capital, and still more while his funeral-train was on the way to his tomb, the reception of official deputations and political bodies was continued by his successor. Mr. Johnson was always ready to explain with some iteration and with great emphasis his views of the Government's duty respecting those who had been engaged in rebellion against its authority. To a representative body of loyal Southerners who by reason of their fidelity to the Union had been compelled to flee from home, Mr. Johnson was especially demonstrative in his sympathy, and positive in his assurances. In reply to their address he said: "It is hardly necessary for me on this occasion to declare that my sympathies and impulses in connection with this nefarious rebellion beat in unison with yours. Those who have passed through this bitter ordeal and who participated in it to a great extent, are more competent, as I think, to judge and determine the true policy that should be pursued. I know how to appreciate the condition of being driven from one's home. I can sympathize with him whose all has been taken from him: I can sympathize with him who has been driven from the place that gave his children birth. . . . I have become satisfied that mercy without justice is a crime, and that when mercy and clemency are exercised by the Executive it should always be done in view of justice. In that manner alone the great prerogative of mercy is properly exercised. The time has come, as you who have had to drink this bitter cup are fully aware, when the American people should be made to understand the true nature of crime. Of crime generally our people have a high understanding as well as of the necessity of its punishment; but in the catalogue of crimes there is one, and that the highest known to the laws and the Constitution, of which since the days of Aaron Burr they have become oblivious. That crime is treason. The time has come when the people should be taught to understand the length and breadth, the height and depth, of treason. One who has become distinguished in the rebellion says that 'when traitors become numerous enough, treason becomes respectable, and to become a traitor is to constitute a portion of the aristocracy of the country.' God protect the American people against such an aristocracy! . . . When the Government of the United States shall ascertain who are the conscious and intelligent traitors the penalty and the forfeit should be paid."
A delegation of Pennsylvanians called upon him with ex-Secretary Simon Cameron as their spokesman. In reply Mr. Johnson said, "There has been an effort since this rebellion began, to make the impression that it was a mere political struggle, or, as I see it thrown out in some of the papers, a struggle for the ascendency of certain principles from the dawn of the government to the present time, and now settled by the final triumph of the Federal arms. If this is admitted, the Government is at an end; for no question can arise but they will make it a party issue, and then to whatever length they carry it, the party defeated will only be a party defeated, with no crime attaching thereto. But I say that treason is a crime, the very highest crime known to the law, and there are men who ought to suffer the penalty of their treason! . . . To the unconscious, the deceived, the conscripted, in short, to the great mass of the misled, I would say mercy, clemency, reconciliation, and the restoration of their government. But to those who have deceived, to the conscious, intelligent, influential traitor who attempted to destroy the life of a nation, I would say, on you be inflicted the severest penalties of your crime."
The inflexible sternness of Mr. Johnson's tone and the frequent repetition of his intention to inflict the severest penalty of the law upon the leading traitors, began to create apprehension in the North. It was feared that the country might be called upon to witness, after the four years' carnival of death on the battle-field and in the hospital, an era of "bloody assizes," made the more rigorous and revengeful from the peculiar sense of injury which the President, as a loyal Southerner, had realized in his own person. This feeling was probably still further aggravated by his avowed sympathy with the thousands in the South who had been maimed, driven from home, stripped of all their property, simply because of the fidelity to the Constitution and the Union of their fathers. The spirit of the Vendetta, unknown in the Northern States, was frequently shown in the South, where it had long been domesticated with all its Corsican ferocity. It had raged in many instances to the extermination of families, and in many localities to the destruction of peace and the utter defiance of law—not infrequently indeed paralyzing the administration of justice in whole counties. Often seeking and waging open combat with ferocious courage, it did not hesitate at secret murder, at waylaying on lonely roads with superior numbers, and it sometimes went so far as to torture an unhappy victim before the final death-blow. The language of Mr. Johnson was interpreted by the merciful in the North as indicating that his own injuries and fierce conflicts during the war has possibly inspired him with the fell spirit of revenge, which in his zeal he might mistake for the rational demands of justice.
A personal and somewhat curious illustration of Mr. Johnson's temper and purpose at the time is afforded by a conference between himself and Senator Wade of Ohio. Mr. Wade was widely known as among the radical and progressive members of the Republican party. His immediate constituents of the Western Reserve were a just and God-fearing people, amply endowed with both moral and physical courage; but they were not men of blood, and they were not in sympathy with the apparent purposes of the President. It is not improbable that Mr. Wade's views were somewhat in advance of those held by the majority of the people he represented, but he was evidently not in accord with the threatenings and slaughter breathed out by the President.
"Well, Mr. Wade, what would you do were you in my place and charged with my responsibilities?" inquired the President. "I think," replied the frank and honest old senator from Ohio, "I should either force into exile or hang about ten or twelve of the worst of those fellows; perhaps by way of full measure, I should make it thirteen, just a baker's dozen."—"But how," rejoined the President, "are you going to pick out so small a number and show them to be guiltier than the rest?" —"It won't do to hang a very large number," rejoined Wade, "and I think if you would give me time, I could name thirteen that stand at the head in the work of rebellion. I think we would all agree on Jeff Davis, Toombs, Benjamin Slidell, Mason, and Howell Cobb. If we did no more than drive those half-dozen out of the country, we should accomplish a good deal."
The interview was long, and at its close Mr. Johnson expressed surprise that Wade was willing to let "the traitors," as he always styled them, "escape so easily." He said that he had expected the heartiest support from Wade in a policy which, as he outlined it to the senator, seemed in thoroughness to rival that of Strafford. Mr. Wade left the Executive Mansion with his mind divided between admiration for the stern resolve and high courage of the President on the one hand, and his fear on the other that a policy so determined and aggressive as Mr. Johnson seemed bent on pursuing might work a re-action in the North, and that thus in the end less might be done in providing proper safeguards against another rebellion, than if too much had not been attempted.
The remains of the late President lay in state at the Executive Mansion for four days. The entire city seemed as a house of mourning. It was remarked that even the little children in the streets wore no smiles upon their faces, so deeply were they impressed by the calamity which had brought grief to every loyal heart. The martial music which had been resounding in glad celebration of the national triumph had ceased; public edifice and private mansion were alike draped with the insignia of grief; the flag of the Union, which had been waving more proudly than ever before, was now lowered to half-mast, giving mute but significant expression to the sorrow that was felt wherever on sea or land that flag was honored.
Funeral services, conducted by the leading clergymen of the city, were held in the East Room on Wednesday the 19th of April. Amid the solemn tolling of church-bells, and the still more solemn thundering of minute-guns from the vast line of fortifications which had protected Washington, the body, escorted by an imposing military and civic procession, was transferred to the rotunda of the Capitol. The day was observed throughout the Union as one of fasting, humiliation, and prayer. The deep feeling of the people found expression in all the forms of religious solemnity. Services in the churches throughout the land were held in unison with the services at the Executive mansion, and were everywhere attended with exhibition of profound personal grief. In all the cities of Canada business was suspended, public meetings of condolence with a kindred people were held, and prayers were read in the churches. Throughout the Confederate States where war had ceased but peace had not yet come, the people joined in significant expressions of sorrow over the death of him whose very name they had been taught to execrate.
Early on the morning of the 21st the body was removed from the Capitol and placed on the funeral-car which was to transport it to its final resting-place in Illinois. The remains of a little son who had died three years before, were taken from their burial-place in Georgetown and borne with those of his father for final sepulture in the stately mausoleum which the public mind had already decreed to the illustrious martyr. The train which moved from the National Capital was attended on its course by extraordinary manifestations of grief on the part of the people. Baltimore, which had reluctantly and sullenly submitted to Mr. Lincoln's formal inauguration and to his authority as President, now showed every mark of honor and of homage as his body was borne through her streets, Confederate and Unionist alike realizing the magnitude of the calamity which had overwhelmed both North and South. In Philadelphia the entire population did reverence to the memory of the murdered patriot. A procession of more than a hundred thousand persons formed his funeral cortege to Independence Hall, where the body remained until the ensuing day. The silence of the sorrowful night was in strange contrast with the scene in the same place, four years before, when Mr. Lincoln, in the anxieties and perils of the opening rebellion, hoisted the National flag over our ancient Temple of Liberty, and before a great and applauding multitude defended the principles which that flag typifies. He concluded in words which, deeply impressive at the time, proved sadly prophetic now that his dead body lay in a bloody shroud where his living form then stood: "Sooner than surrender these principles, I would be assassinated on this spot."
In the city of New York the popular feeling was, if possible, even more marked than in Philadelphia. The streets were so crowded that the procession moved with difficulty to the City Hall, where amid the chantings of eight hundred singers, the body was placed upon the catafalque prepared for it. Throughout the day and throughout the entire night the living tide of sorrowful humanity flowed past the silent form. At the solemn hour of midnight the German musical societies sang a funeral-hymn with an effect so impressive and touching that thousands of strong men were in tears. Other than this no sound was heard throughout the night except the footsteps of the advancing and receding crowd. At sunrise many thousands still waiting in the park were obliged to turn away disappointed. It was observed that every person who passed through the hall, even the humblest and poorest, wore the insignia of mourning. In a city accustomed to large assemblies and to unrestrained expressions of popular feeling, no such scene had ever been witnessed. On the afternoon appointed for the procession to move Westward, all business was suspended, and the grief of New York found utterance in Union Square before a great concourse of people in a funeral oration by the historian Bancroft and in an elegiac ode by William Cullen Bryant.
Similar scenes were witnessed in the great cities along the entire route. Final obsequies were celebrated in Oakridge Cemetery near Springfield on the fourth day of May. Major-General Joseph Hooker acted as chief marshal upon the occasion, and an impressive sermon was pronounced by Bishop Simpson of the Methodist-Episcopal church. Perhaps in the history of the world no such outpouring of the people, no such exhibition of deep feeling, had ever been witnessed as on this funeral march from the National Capital to the capital of Illinois. The pomp with which sovereigns and nobles are interred is often formal rather than emotional, attaching to the rank rather than to the person. Louis Philippe appealed to the sympathy of France when he brought the body of the Emperor Napoleon from St. Helena twenty years after his death; but the popular feeling among the French was chiefly displayed in connection with the elaborate rites which attended the transfer of the dead hero to the Invalides, where the shattered remains of his valiant and once conquering legions formed for the last time around him. Twelve years later the victorious rival by whom the imperial warrior was at last overcome, received from the populace of London, as well as from the crown, the peers, and the commons of England, the heartiest tribute that Britons ever paid to human greatness.
The splendor of the ceremonials which aggrandize living royalty as much as they glorify dead heroism, was wholly wanting in the obsequies of Mr. Lincoln. No part was taken by the Government except the provision of a suitable military escort. All beyond was the spontaneous movement of the people. For seventeen hundred miles, through eight great States of the Union whose population was not less than fifteen millions, an almost continuous procession of mourners attended the remains of the beloved President. There was no pageantry save their presence. There was no tribute but their tears. They bowed before the bier of him who had ben prophet, priest, and king to his people, who had struck the shackles from the slave, who had taught a higher sense of duty to the true man, who had raised the Nation to a loftier conception of faith and hope and charity. A countless multitude of men, with music and banner and cheer and the inspiration of a great cause, presents a spectacle that engages the eye, fills the mind, appeals to the imagination. But the deepest sympathy of the soul is touched, the height of human sublimity is reached, when the same multitude, stricken with a common sorrow, stands with uncovered head, reverent and silent.
From saddening associations with the tragical death of Mr. Lincoln, popular attention was turned three weeks after his interment to a great military display in the Capital of the Nation in honor of the final victory for the Union. The exigencies of the closing campaign had transferred the armies commanded by General Sherman from the Mississippi Valley to the Atlantic coast. The soldiers of Port Hudson and Vicksburg, the heroes of Donelson, Chattanooga, and Atlanta, had been brought within a day's march of the bronzed veterans whose battle-flags were emblazoned with the victories of Antietam and Gettysburg and with the crowning triumph at Appomattox. It was the happy suggestion of Secretary Stanton which assembled all these forces in the National Capital to be viewed by the Commander-in-Chief. Through four years of stern and perilous duty, there had been no holiday, no parade of ceremony, no evolution for mere display, either by the troops of the East or of the West. Their time had been passed in camp and in siege, in march and in battle, with no effort relaxed, no vigor abated, no vigilance suspended, during all the long period when the fate of the Union was at stake. It was now fitting that the President, attended by the chief officers of the Government, should welcome them and honor them in the name of the Republic. They had brought from the field the priceless trophy of American Nationality as the reward of their valorous struggle. By the voice of the people a "triumph" as demonstrative, if not as formal, as that given to a conqueror in Ancient Rome was now decreed to them. They had earned the right to be applauded on the via sacra, and to receive the laurel-wreath from the steps of the Capitol.
The first day's review, Wednesday, May 23, was given to the Army of the Potomac, of which General Meade had remained the commander since the victory at Gettysburg, but whose operations during the closing year of the struggle had been under the personal direction of General Grant. A part only of its vast forces marched through Washington on that day of loyal pride and gladness; but the number was large beyond the power of the eye to apprehend, beyond any but the skilled mind to reckon. An approximate conception of it can be reached by stating that one hundred and fifty-one regiments of infantry, thirty-six regiments of cavalry, and twenty-two batteries of artillery passed under the eye of the President, who reviewed the whole from a platform in front of the Executive Mansion.
On the ensuing day the Army of the Tennessee and the Army of Georgia, constituting the right and left wing of General Sherman's forces, were reviewed. There was naturally some rivalry of a friendly type between the Eastern and Western soldiers, and special observation was made of their respective qualities and characteristics. The geographical distinction was not altogether accurate, for Western troops had always formed a valuable part of the Army of the Potomac; while troops from the East were incorporated in Sherman's army, and had shared the glories of the Atlanta campaign and of the March to the sea. It was true, however, that the great mass of the Army of the Potomac came from the eastern side of the Alleghanies, while the great mass of Sherman's command came from the western side. The aggregate number reviewed on the second day did not differ materially from the number on the first day. There were some twenty more regiments of infantry on the second day, but fewer cavalry regiments and fewer batteries of artillery.
The special interest which attached to the review, aside from the inestimable significance of a restored Union, consisted in the fact that the spectators, who were reckoned by tens of thousands, saw before them an actual, living, fighting army. They were not holiday troops with bright uniforms, trained only for display and carrying guns that were never discharged against a foe. They were a great body of veterans who had not slept under a roof for years, who had marched over countries more extended than those traversed by the Legions of Caesar, who had come from a hundred battle-fields on which they had left dead comrades more numerous than the living who now celebrated the final victory of peace. It was the remembrance of this which in all the glad rejoicing over the past and all the bright anticipation of the future lent a tinge of sadness to the splendid and inspiring spectacle of the day. The applause so heartily given for the soldiers who were present could not be unaccompanied by tears for the fate of that vast host which had gone down to death without even the consolation of knowing that they had not died in vain.
In the four years of their service the armies of the Union, counting every form of conflict, great and small, had been in twenty-two hundred and sixty-five engagements with the Confederate troops. From the time when active hostilities began until the last gun of the war was fired, a fight of some kind—a raid, a skirmish, or a pitched battle—occurred at some point on our widely extended front nearly eleven times a week upon an average. Counting only those engagements in which the Union loss in killed, wounded, and missing exceeded one hundred, the total number was three hundred and thirty,—averaging one every four and a half days. From the northernmost point of contact to the southernmost, the distance by any practicable line of communications was more than two thousand miles. From East to West the extremes were fifteen hundred miles apart.
During the first year of hostilities—one of preparation on both sides —the battles were naturally fewer in number and less decisive in character than afterwards, when discipline had been imparted to the troops by drill, and when the materiel of war had been collected and stored for prolonged campaigns. The engagements of all kinds in 1861 were thirty-five in number, of which the most serious was the Union defeat at Bull Run. In 1862 the war had greatly increased in magnitude and intensity, as is shown by the eighty-four engagements between the armies. The net result of the year's operations was highly favorable to the Rebellion. In 1863 the battles were one hundred and ten in number—among them some of the most significant and important victories for the Union. In 1864 there were seventy-three engagements, and in the winter and early spring of 1865 there were twenty-eight.
In fact, 1864-65 was one continuous campaign. The armies of the Union did not go into winter-quarters to the extent of abandoning or suspending operations. They felt that it was in their power to bring the struggle to an end at once, and they pressed forward with prodigious vigor and with complete success. General Grant with his characteristic energy insisted that "active and continuous operations of all the troops that could be brought into the field regardless of season and weather were necessary to a speedy termination of the war." He had seen, as he expressed it in his own terse, quaint language, that "the armies of the East and the West had been acting independently and without concert, like a balky team, no two of them ever pulling together." Under his direction the forces of the Union, however distant from each other, were brought into harmonious co-operation and with the happiest results. The discipline of the Union army was never so fine, its vigor was never so great, its spirit was never so high, as at the close of that terrible campaign which under Grant's command in the East began at the Wilderness and ended with Lee's surrender, and which under Sherman's command in the West began with the march towards Atlanta, and closed with the complete conquest of Georgia and the Carolinas.
A grave moral responsibility rests upon those who continue a contest of arms after it is made clear that there is no longer a possibility of success. However far the laws of war may justify a belligerent in deceiving an enemy, the laws of honorable and humane dealing are violated with one's own partisans when a brave and confiding soldiery are led into a fight known by their commanders to be hopeless. Early in January, 1865, Jefferson Davis indicated the desire of the Confederate authorities to negotiate with the National Government for the arrangement of the terms of peace, and as a result the famous conference was held at Fortress Monroe. This step was taken by Mr. Davis because he saw that further effort on the part of the Confederates must be utterly futile. When he failed at this conference to secure any recognition of his government, he spitefully turned to the prolongation of the struggle. Every life destroyed in the conflict thereafter was needless slaughter, and the blood of the victims cries out against the Confederate Government for compelling the sacrifice.
When at last through sheer exhaustion the Confederate Armies ceased resistance and surrendered, they did so on precisely the same terms that had been offered by the Government of the Union three months before. In the interim the Confederate leaders had been deluding their people with the pretense that the "Lincoln Government" had outraged the South in refusing to recognize Confederate Nationality even long enough to treat with it for peace. "Nothing beyond this," exclaimed Mr. Robert M. T. Hunter in a speech delivered at a meeting in Richmond held immediately after the Peace Conference to which he had been one of the commissioners,—"Nothing beyond this is needed to stir the blood of Southern men." In the course of his inflammatory address Mr. Hunter made the naive confession: "If our people exhibit the proper spirit they will bring forth the deserters from their caves; and the skulkers, who are avoiding the perils of the field, will go forth to share the dangers of their countrymen." The "skulkers" and "deserters" referred to were no doubt brave men who, having fought as long as there was hope, were not ambitious to sacrifice their lives to carry on the shameless bravado of the political leaders of the Rebellion.
Mr. Hunter spoke with singular intemperance of tone for one who was usually cool, guarded, and conservative. He was followed by the Mephistopheles of the Rebellion, the brilliant, learned, sinister Secretary of State, Judah P. Benjamin. He spoke as one who felt that he had the alias of an English subject for shelter, or possibly the Spanish flag for protection, when the worst should come, and thus he might continue to play the part of Confederate citizen so long as it favored his ambition and his fortune. He delivered a speech full of desperate suggestion—so desperate indeed that it re-acted and injured the cause for which he was demanding harsh sacrifices on the part of others. He urged upon his hearers that the States of the Confederacy had nearly seven hundred thousand male slaves of the age for military service. He gave the assurance that if freedom should be conceded to these men they would fight in aid of the Rebellion. Besides advocating a guaranty of emancipation to all these black men,—for the right to keep whom in slavery the war had been undertaken,—Mr. Benjamin urged that every bale of cotton, every hogshead of tobacco, every pound of bacon, every barrel of flour, should be seized for the benefit of the common cause.
Happily Mr. Benjamin went too far. His over-zeal had tempted him to prove too much. The Southern people who had desired to build up a slave empire, and who despised the negro as a freeman, were asked by Mr. Benjamin to surrender this cherished project, and join with him in the ignoble design of founding a confederacy whose corner-stone should rest on hatred of the Northern States, and whose one achievement should be the revival and extension of English commercial power on this continent. When the end came, Mr. Benjamin did not share the disasters and sacrifices with the sincere and earnest men whom he had done so much to mislead, and to whom he was bound in an especial manner by the tie which unites the victims of a common calamity. Instead of this magnanimous course which would in part have redeemed his wrong-doing, Mr. Benjamin took quick refuge under the flag to whose allegiance he was born. He left America with the full consciousness that to the measure of his ability, which was great, he had inflicted injury upon the country which had sheltered and educated him, and which had opened to him the opportunity for that large personal influence which he had used so discreditably to himself and so disastrously to the cause he espoused.
Mr. Benjamin became a resident of London and subsequently won distinction at the English Bar—rising to the eminence of Queen's counsel. His ability and learning were everywhere recognized, but it was at the same time admitted that he owed much of his success to the sympathy and the support of that preponderating class among British merchants who cordially wished and worked for our destruction,—who, covertly throughout the entire civil conflict, and openly where safe opportunity was presented, did all in their power to embarrass and injure the Union. If Mr. Benjamin had been loyal, and had honorably observed the special oath which he had taken to maintain and defend the Constitution, he might in vain have sought the patronage of that large number of Englishmen who enriched him with generous retainers. No one grudged to Mr. Benjamin the wages of his professional work, the reward of ability and industry; but the manner in which he was lauded into notoriety in London, the effort constantly made to lionize and to aggrandize him, were conspicuous demonstrations of hatred to our Government, and were significant expressions of regret that Mr. Benjamin's treason had not been successful. Those whom he served either in the Confederacy or in England in his efforts to destroy the American Union may eulogize him according to his work; but every citizen of the Great Republic, whose loyalty was unswerving, will regard Mr. Benjamin as a foe in whom malignity was unrelieved by a single trace of magnanimity.
The Confederates had failed in war, but their leaders had not the moral courage to accept the only practicable peace. Their subsequent course in Congress, in the Cabinet, and in the field, exposed in very striking outline the strong points and the weak points of Southern character. It exhibited Southern men as possessed of the utmost physical courage—often carried indeed to foolish audacity. It exhibited them at the same time as singularly deficient in the attribute of moral courage. When the Southern leaders knew the Confederate cause to be hopeless not a single man among them displayed sufficient heroism to brave public opinion with the declaration of his honest belief. The absolute suppression of free discussion which had long prevailed in the South, the frequent murder of those who attempted to express an unpopular opinion however honestly entertained, had deprived brave men of every trait of that higher form of courage which has given immortality of fame to the moral heroes of the world.
Not individually alone but in combined action this weak trait of Southern character was made manifest. Only a month before the time when the Confederacy was in ruins and the members of its Congress were fugitives from its Capital, they united in an inflammatory address to the people of the South, urging them to continue the contest. They made assertions and employed arguments which as men of intelligence they could not themselves believe and accept. They strove by exciting evil passions and blind animosities to hurl the soldiers of the Confederacy once more into a desperate fight with all its suffering and with certain defeat. In this address, which was the unanimous vote of the Confederate Senate and the Confederate House of Representatives, the people were told that if they failed in the war, "the Southern States would be held as conquered provinces by the despotic government at Washington;" that they "would be kept in subjugation by the stern hand of military power as Venice and Lombardy have been held by Austria, as Poland is held by the Russian Czar." A still more terrible fate was foretold. "Not only," continued the address, "would we be deprived of every political franchise dear to freemen, but socially we would be degraded to the level of slaves. . . . Not only would the property and estates of vanquished rebels be confiscated, but they would be divided and distributed among our African bondsmen."
Even the extravagance and absurdity of the foregoing declarations were outdone in other parts of the address. These senators and representatives—not ignorant men themselves—presumed so far upon the ignorance of their constituents as to assure them that "our enemies with a boastful insolence unparalleled in the history of modern civilization have threatened not only our subjugation, but some of them have announced their determination if successful in this struggle to deport our entire white population, and supplant it with a new population drawn from their own territory and from European countries. . . . Think of it! That we the descendants of a brave ancestry who wrested from a powerful nation by force of arms the country which we inhabit—bequeathed to us by them, and upon which we have been born and reared; that we should be uprooted from it and an alien population planted in our stead is a thought that should inspire us with undying hostility to an enemy base enough to have conceived it."