A Straw That Shows the Wind: Harper’s Weekly, December 31, 1870, page 850

A Straw That Shows the Wind.

The resolution of Senator M‘Creery, of Kentucky, was properly characterized by Senator Sumner as an illustration of what may be expected if the Democratic party should return to power. The resolution proposed substantially that the remains of seventeen thousand Union soldiers should be removed from the Arlington estate, in order that the widow of Robert E. Lee should live there. Such a proposition was the grossest insult to the patriotism and good sense of the country, and therefore to the Senate, their representative, and the Senate almost unanimously resolved that it should not be received. The Democratic Senators were greatly confused by the motion of Mr. M‘Creery. As partisans they saw its effect. It was an unnecessary revelation of the real spirit of the party, and the party leaders know that the country is at least loyal, and that they can hope to succeed only by persuading the people that the party has renounced its sympathy with the spirit and the principles which produced the rebellion. Some of his Democratic friends, therefore, rebuked Mr. M‘Creery, who assumed all the responsibility of the resolution, and tried to withdraw it. But Senator Edmunds held him fast to the rules, and by the vote of fifty-nine to four the Senate refused to receive the resolution.

The Democratic press does not openly defend the resolution. But the manner in which it alludes to it shows how gladly it would defend it if it dared. The death of General Lee gave that press an opportunity to show the tendency of its sympathy, which it zealously improved. The extravagant eulogies which were heaped by the Democratic papers upon a man whose only claim to the notice of history is that he tried to destroy the government of the United States in order to establish a slave empire upon its ruins were very suggestive. And the fact, which is constantly refreshed in the public mind by such incidents, that the Democratic party is the next friend and mourner of the lost cause, should impress upon the country the great and controlling truth of the political situation. That truth is that the nation has entered a new epoch, with new principles and a new policy; that the principles are those of the Republican party; while the Democratic party is the representative of the era and the principles which have passed away. There is no evidence of any disposition upon the part of the Democratic party to accept the new situation, or to acquiesce in what has been accomplished. Its last national declaration was that the new order is unconstitutional and void, and its conduct, wherever it has the ascendency, shows an undiminished sympathy with a spirit which the country abhors.

And even were this not so—even had the same policy which led to the Delaware Democratic Senators to censure Senator M‘Creery‘s resolution persuaded the party to profess sympathy with the regenerated Union—it would still be impossible to say why a party of such composition and such a history should be intrusted with the administration of a policy which it had always opposed, and which is founded upon political principles which it has always derided. After the Revolution the government of the new Union was confided to the friends of the principles upon which it was established—the men whose convictions and ability had opened the new era to the country. After the war of 1812 the government was controlled for many a year by the party which had made the war, and which was in full harmony with its spirit. And now, the country having entered upon a new era more glorious than any in its history, and under the auspices of the Republican party, that party is the one which will deal with all questions in the spirit of the new time, and with the sympathy of profound conviction.

A party whose newspapers hate to speak with decency of Abraham Lincoln, but which quiver with adulation of Robert E. Lee, and from one of whose Senators proceeds the astounding proposition that the bones of Union soldiers shall be removed almost from under the shadow of the Capitol, that the widow of Lee may not be offended—a party which still believes the war to have been an outrage upon the “South,” and which would undo all of its great work that it can—is a party which does not comprehend the new America, which is not inspired by its faith, and whose restoration to power would be the sorest of national calamities.

The President’s Proclamation: Washington Evening Star, July 19, 1864, page 2

The President’s Proclamation.

The call by the President for 500,000 men, though not to be enforced by a draft until the 5th of September, will, by accelerating enlistments, undoubtedly serve to put a large additional force at the command of our military authorities almost immediately. A wall of despair comes up from Richmond that Atlanta must fall because of the want of men to defend that city and Richmond at the same time. This shows how low the Confederate resources in the way of fighting material has been drained.

An addition to our force of 500,000 men, or the half of that number, will enable us to finish the war this summer and crush out the last vestige of the rebellion.

By the provisions of the call those localities where an excess of troops has been furnished under previous calls will be credited with that excess on this. Until the 5th of September is allowed for filling up quotas by volunteering—the term of service to be at the option of volunteers for one, two, or three years. At the end of fifty days a draft will take place for men to serve for one year, to supply any deficiency in the quota.

Capture of Blockade Runners: Washington Evening Star, July 19, 1864, page 2

Capture of Blockade Runners.

Admiral Dahlgren, writing from on board his flagship Philadelphia, in Stono river, S. C., under date of July 10, informs the Navy Department that on the 8th instant the U. S. steamer Sonoma, Lieut. Commander Matthews, captured the samll side-wheel steamer Ida, which vessel left Sapelo the night before, bound to Nassau. The Ida had on board at the time of her capture, fifty-four bales of cotton, ten men, and a captain named Postell, who, it is said, was formerly a midshipman in the U. S. navy.

Admiral Dahlgren also reports the capture of the rebel schooner Pocahontas, on the night of July 7th, by the U. S. steamers Azalea and Sweet Briar, while attempting to pass out of Charleston harbor bound to Nassau. The Pocahontas had on board fifty-three bales of cotton, and two hundred and twenty-nine boxes of tobacco.

The New Enrollment Law: Gallipolis Journal, July 14, 1864, page 1

The New Enrollment Law

The following is the Enrollment act, as passed by both Houses of Congress:

An Act

Further to regulate and provide for the enrolling and calling out of the national forces; and for other purposes.

The President of the United States may, at his discretion, at any time hereafter, call for any number of men as volunteers, for the respective terms of one, two, and three years, for military service, and any such volunteer, or, in case of a draft, as hereinafter provided, a substitute, shall be credited to the town, ward, or city precinct, or election district of a county, toward the quota of which he may have volunteered or engaged as a substitute, and every volunteer who is accepted and mustered into the service for a term of one year, unless sooner discharged, shall receive and be paid by the United States, a bounty of $100, and if for a term of two years, unless sooner discharged, a bounty of $200, and if for a term of three years, unless sooner discharged, a bounty of $300; one-third of which bounty shall be paid to the soldier at the time of his being mustered into the service, one-third at the expiration of one-half of his term of service, and one-third at the expiration of his term of service, and in case of his death while in the service, then the residue of his bounty unpaid shall be paid to his widow, if he shall have left a widow; if not, to his chidren, or if there be none, to his mother, in case she be a widow.

In case the quota or any part thereof, of any town, township, ward of a city, precinct or election district, or of any county not so sub-divided, shall not be filled within the space of fifty days after such call, then the President shall immediately order a draft for one year to fill such quota or any part thereof, which may be unfilled; and in case of any such draft, no payment of money shall be accepted or received by the Government as commutation to release any enrolled or drafted man from personal obligations to perform military service.

It shall be lawful for the Executive of any of the States to send recruiting agents into any of the States declared to be in rebellion, except the States of Arkansas, Tennessee and Louisiana, and to recruit volunteers under any call under the provisions of this act, who shall be credited to the State and to the respective subdivisions thereof, which may procure the enlistment.

Drafted men, substitutes and volunteers, when mustered in, shall be organized in or assigned to regiments, batteries, or other organizations from among those of their respective States which at the time of their assignment may not be filled to their maximum number.

The twentieth section of an act entitled “An act to amend an act entitled an act for enrolling and calling out the national forces,” approved February 24, 1864, shall be construed to mean that the Secretary of War shall discharge minors under the age of eighteen years under the circumstances and on the conditions prescribed in said section; and hereafter if any officer of the United States shall enlist or muster into the military service any person under the age of sixteen years, with or without the consent of his parent or guardian, such person so enlisted or recruited shall be immediately and unconditionally discharged upon the repaym of the bounty received; and such recruiting or mustering officer who knowingly enlists a person under eighteen years of age shall be dismissed the service, with the forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and shall be subject to such further punishment as a court martial may decide.

Sixth—Section three of an act entitled “An act to amend an act entitled an act for enrolling and calling out the national forces and other purposes,” approved Feb. 24, 1864, shall be and the same hereby is amended so as to authorize and direct district provost marshals, under the direction of the Provost Marshal-General, to make a draft for one hundred per centum in addition to the number required to fill the quota of any district as provided by said section.

Seventh—That instead of travelling pay, all drafted persons reporting at a place of rendezvous, shall be allowed transportation from their places of residence, and persons discharged at the place of rendezvous shall be allowed transportation to their places of residence.

Eighth—All persons in the naval service of the United States, who have entered said service during the present rebellion, who have not been credited to the quota of any town, district, war or State, by reason of their being in said service, and not enrolled prior to February 24th, 1864, shall, on satisfactory proof of their residence, made to the Secretary of War, be enrolled and credited to the quotas of the town, ward, district or State, in which they respectively reside.

Ninth—If any person, duly drafted, shall be absent from home in the prosecution of his usual business, the Provost Marshal of the district shall cause him to be duly notified as soon as may be, and he shall not be deemed a deserter, nor liable as such, until notice has been given him, and reasonable time allowed for him to return and report to the Provost Marshal of his district; but such absence shall not otherwise affect his liability under this act.

Tenth and Eleventh.—Nothing contained in this act is to be construed to alter or in any way affect the law relative to those conscientiously opposed to bearing arms, or to affect the rights of persons to procure substitutes.

McCellan [sic] and Lee: The Jeffersonian, September 1, 1864, page 1

McCellan and Lee.

“Won’t you buy a splendid portrait of Gen. Grant?” asked a most intelligent peddler, six months from England, of a country friend at one of the New York hotels a few days since.

“No, Sir, I do not want it.”

“Ah! then you will this of Gen. McClellan!”

“No, no; I wouldn’t have that any how.”

“Ah, Sir,” resumed the peddler, waxing confidential, “I sell more of McClellan now than I do of Grant; but if I only had Gen. Lee, I could sell ten times as many of him as I can of McClellan—and to the same men.”

The Elements of “Democracy” Classified: Potsdam Courier-Freeman, March 30, 1864

The Elements of “Democracy” Classified

Petroleum Nasby classifies the various cliques in the democratic party as follows:

1. Them ez would nominait Mick Lellon on a war platform.

2. Them ez would nominait Mick Lellon on a peese platform.

3. Them ez would nominait Vallandygum on a peese platform.

4. Them ez would nominait Vallandygum on a war platform.

5. Them ez would favor the war if slavery cood be let alone.

6. Them ez opposed to the war in any shape.

7. Them ez in Kanady in consekens of the draft.

8. The betwixed and betweeners, who are ashamd uv our party, and ain’t sootable for any other. They air with democracy ez the Michigander is with his itch—ood like 2 git rid of it but can’t.

Success of the Negro Labor Regulations in Louisiana: Potsdam Courier-Freeman, March 30, 1864, page 1

Success of the Negro Labor Regulations in Louisiana.

The correspondent of the N. Y. Times, writing from New Orleans on the 10th, speaks thus flatteringly of the success of Gen. Banks’ regulations for the free negroes of Louisiana:

Here, in Louisiana, wonders have been wrought. A few months ago, to find a negro who could read was a wonder; to find one who could write was a greater wonder, and to find one who understood arithmetic was a greater wonder still. Fortunately, a good Providence has seen fit to ordain better things, and how here, in this sin-cursed city, nineteen hundred colored children are reading and writing in the day schools which they attend.

One year ago Col. Hanks was feeding from the government commissariat more than 20,000 negroes. Beside this number there were quite 15,000 who hung around the camps and elsewhere, obtaining their living partly by cooking, washing, fishing and stealing; yet these were, to a large extent, no incubus upon the government.

Now all the negroes have been placed in a condition of profit to the government and to themselves. Not only does the labor system furnish employment to those within the limits of this department, but had we 10,000 more they could all be employed, without expense, but rather with great benefit to the government.

The benefits that will return to the government this year, resulting from the operation of this system of labor, will more than pay all the expense that the refugee negroes have been to it since the occupation of the State by our forces.

Facts furnish the best proof of the success of any system; and, when we compare the condition of fifty thousand negroes in this State last year with their condition now, we need hardly allude to a thousand particulars. We feed to-day at public expense fifty colored orphans, and about one hundred aged men and women.

Rev. T. W. Conway, who has been assigned to duty with Col. Hanks, the faithful Superintendent of Negro Affairs, has just visited some of the parishes of the State, with the view of perfecting a means of uniting the separated families of the colored troops, as well as the registering of all the colored persons in the department, and has ascertained, in regard to the disposition of the negroes themselves, that they are now quite happy; and with the assurance given that their children shall have the blessings of education, they feel very contented and exceedingly grateful. These people are now very jealous of their rights, and they know very well when they are wronged, and that, by reporting any injury done them by their employers to Col. Hanks, they will surely receive redress. They, consequently, feel greatly improved, and are very willing to work.

Confederate Dogs Growling over a Bone: Potsdam Courier-Freeman, March 30, 1864, page 1

Confederate Dogs Growling over a Bone.

Outrageous.—This morning the butchers of this city put up the price of beef to three dollars a pound. When will their avaricious dispositions be satisfied? How can the people stand to be thus ground down? There is no necessity or reason for the advance, and some steps should be taken to lower the figures. It can be done and should be at once.—Atlanta Appeal.

What would the Appeal say to our butchers, who this morning put the price of beef to four dollars a pound? We are an enterprising people here and are determined to keep ahead—in prices!—Wilmington Jour.

We condole with our Atlanta and Wilmington friends, but we can’t see how it could be otherwise when three-fourths of the people seem indisposed to have more money than they have got. We have no such troubles on the beef question in Raleigh, for to the best of our knowledge and belief it has been nearly a month since there was any of the article in the market. We have, however, a pretty good supply of other luxuries, such as potatoes, peas, rice, a little bacon, and so on—enough, we trust, until more is made.Raleigh Standard.

The Peace Party in North Carolina: Potsdam Courier-Freeman, March 30, 1864, page 1

The Peace Party in North Carolina.

Hon W. W. Holden, one of the ablest of Jeff. Davis’ “copperheads,” has issued the following address to the people of North Carolina:

“In compliance with the wishes of many friends, I announce myself a candidate for the office of Governor of North Carolina, at the election to be held on the first Thursday in August next.

“My principles and views, as a conservative “after the straitest sect,” are well known to the people of the State. These principles and views are what they have been. They will not be changed.

“I am not disposed, at a time like this, to invite the people from their employments, and add to the excitement which prevails in the public mind, by haranguing them for their votes. We need all our energies to meet the common enemy, and to provide means of subsistence for our troops in the field and our people at home. Let the people go calmly and firmly to the polls and vote for the man of their choice. I will cheerfully abide their decision, whatever it may be.

“If elected, I will do everything in my power to promote the interests, the honor and the glory of North Carolina, and to secure a honorable peace.

March 4th. W. W. Holden.  

During the recent freshet near Petersburg: The Soldiers’ Journal, October 5, 1864, page 267

During the recent freshet near Petersburg, when a portion of the Federal fortifications was submerged and several soldiers were drowned, one man, while struggling in the water, cried out:

“I’m Captain Semmes! where’s the Deerhound?”

That was as cool and self-possessed as Mercutio, who died with a joke on his lips.