Thursday, October 27, 2011

Nostradamus Predicts

This entry come from the Memphis Daily Appeal, October 27, 1861

. . . .many of the predictions made by Nostradamus . . . have been completely verified, they are generally discredited in our times.  But in the Prophecies of Vatcinations, of that great man, vol. 2d (edition of 1609) we find the following:

"About that time (1861) a great quarrel and contest will arise in a country beyond the seas (America).  Many poor devils will be hung, and many poor wretches killed . . .. The war will not cease for four years, at which none should be astonished or surprised, for there will be no want of hatred and obstinacy in it.  At the end of that time, prostrate and almost ruined, the people will embrace each other in great joy and love."

The period of four years . . . comprise the exact term of Lincoln's administration.  At the close, a new era, it seems, will commence of harmony and peace.  Well, if we are to go through this fiery ordeal we must make up our minds to bear up manfully through the conflict, and acquit ourselves like men. . . .
Nostradamus from Wikimedia

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

My One Hope Is Now On McClellan

This entry is from A Cycle of Adams Letters 1861-1865 edited by Worthington Chauncey Ford. 

This is a letter from Henry Adams to Charles Frances Adams, Jr.  dated October 25, 1861.  

Henry Adams was in London acting as secretary to his father, Charles Francis Adams Sr., when he wrote this letter to his brother, who was back in the states.  It gives us an idea of the English perspective of the Union at that time. 

You know how much encouragement we have had from your side. Every post has taken away on one hand what it brought of good on the other. It has by regular steps sapped the foundations of all confidence in us, in our institutions, our rulers and our honor. How do you suppose we can overcome the effects of the New York press? How do you suppose we can conciliate men whom our tariff is ruining? How do you suppose we can shut people's eyes to the incompetence of Lincoln or the disgusting behavior of many of our volunteers and officers. I tell you we are in a false position and I am sick of it.
My one hope is now on McClellan and if he fails us, then as I say I give it up. Here we are dying by inches. Every day our authority, prestige and influence sink lower in this country, and we have the mournful task of trying to bolster up a failing cause. Do you suppose I can go among the newspapers here and maintain our cause with any face, with such backing? Can I pretend to a faith which I did once feel, but feel no longer? I feel not seldom sorry in these days that I didn't follow my first impulse, and go into the army with the other fellows. Our side wants spirit. It doesn't ring as it ought,  these little ups and downs, this guerilla war in Missouri and Kentucky, amount to nothing but vexation. Oh, for one spark of genius! I have hopes of McClellan for he doesn't seem to have made any great blunders, but I don't know.

Henry Adams

Monday, October 24, 2011

Battalions Strengthened by Ideas

This entry is from Lucy Larcom:  Life, Letter and Diary edited by Daniel Dulany Addison.

Larcom was a former mill worker, poet, teacher and abolitionist.  Here is any entry from her diary wherein she discusses a lecture she heard by Charles Sumner, who was known as a powerful orator and the leader of the antislavery forces in Massachusetts.

October 22. [1861] I heard Charles Sumner on the Rebellion : my first sight and hearing of the great anti-slavery statesman. He was greeted with tremendous applause, and every expression of opposition to slavery was met with new cheers. . . . .

One idea which he presented seemed to me to be worth all the rest, and worth all the frothy spoutings for "Union" that we hear every day; it was that our battalions must be strengthened by ideas, by the idea of freedom. That is it. Our men do not know what they are fighting for; freedom is greater than the Union, and a Union, old or new, with slavery, no true patriot will now ask for. May we be saved from that, whatever calamities we may endure!
Charles Sumner, photograph by Brady from Library of Congress Collection

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Why I Enlisted

This entry is from Brother of Mine, The Civil War Letters of Thomas and William Christie, edited by Hampton Smith.

William and Thomas Christie were half brothers, 13 years apart in age.  They served in the same Regiment,  the 1st Minnesota.

Soldiers must have had various reasons for enlisting.  In this entry, Thomas, the elder of the two brothers, writes home shortly after enlisting explaining to his family why.

October 21, 1861
. . . .I shall not deny that motives other than strictly patriotic have had an influence upon me; but I don't think these other motives are wrong.  I  do want to 'see the world,' to get out of the narrow circle inwhich I have always lied, to 'make a man of myself,' and to have it to say in days to come that I, too, had a part in this great struggle. I lay all these workings of my mind frankly before you; it is for you to say if they are wrong.  You know, my dear father, that I have never concealed anything from you.  Do forgive me, and have Mother forgive me, for acting now in a way to pain you. I feel sure, even as I write, that  you will not only give me your blessings -- but that you will even be glad to have your son enrolled among the Defenders of the Union.  But whether that be so or not, I must go. . . .

2 unidentified soldiers in Union shell jackets, from Library of Congress collection.

Friday, October 21, 2011

By Odd Circumstances

This entry us from Elisha Frank Paxton, Brigadier-General, C.S.A, Composed of His Letters from Camp and Field While an Officer in the Confederate Army, with an Introductory and Connecting Narrative collected and Arranged b his Son, John Gallatin Paxton, and can be found on the the Documenting the South website.  Paxton eventually become a general, but at the time he wrote this letter he had just been promoted to a major. Paxton died in combat leading the famed Stonewall Brigade during the Battle of Chancellorsville.  Here is an excerpt from a touching letter he wrote to his wife.

Centreville, Va., October 20, 1861.

. . . Our separation must continue until this sad war runs its course and terminates, as it must some day, in peace. Then I trust we may pass what remains of life together, loving each other all the better from a recollection of the sadness we have felt from the separation. I am sometimes reminded of you, and the strong tie which binds me to you, by odd circumstances. The other day I saw an officer, who, like myself, has left wife and children at home, riding by the camp, with another woman on horse-back, from a pleasure excursion up the road; and I could not help feeling that in seeking pleasure in such a source he was proving himself false to the holiest feeling and the highest obligation which is known on earth. I thought if I had acted thus faithless to you and our marriage vow, I should feel through life a sense of baseness and degradation from which no repentance or reparation could bring relief. If I know myself, I would not exchange the sweet communion with my absent wife, enjoyed through the recollections of the past and the hopes of the future, for any temporary pleasure which another might offer. I would rather live over again in memory the scenes of seven long years, when we talked of our love and our future, our ride to Staunton on our wedding-day, and our association since then, chequered here and there with events of sadness and sorrow, than accept any enjoyment which ill-timed passion might prompt me to seek from another. I trust, Love, this feeling may grow with every day which passes, and that I may always have the satisfaction of knowing my devotion and fidelity merit the affection which your warm heart lavishes upon me.

Elisha Franklin Paxton, from Wikimedia Commons

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The Word of God is Not Bound

This entry is from the Tennessee Baptist, October 19, 1861 as cited by the Tennessee Historical Commission in the Tennessee Civil War Sourcebook, found at Art Circle Public Library, Crossville, TN website.

The Word of God is Not Bound.

We do not believe in giving up to misfortune, or to cowering before difficulties, though they seem insurmountable.  When it seemed impossible to print the Word of God in the South for our soldiers and Sabbath Schools, at a time when no move was making in any quarter to procure plates, God opened before us "a door of entrance" and the plates were procured and laid upon the press, and been printed by thousands of copies daily.
The next thing was to procure boards and muslin, etc., with which to bind these captions. Our book binder procured a large stock in Louisville, but the very day before they were to come through the hostilities between Tennessee and Kentucky broke out, a railroad bridge was burnt, and all communication cut off.

We have only stock enough to bind Testaments for a short time longer, when the work must cease. Now what can be done? Cannot this seemingly insurmountable difficulty be overcome? It can, if our sisters and the merchants and the shop keepers will give us that which is of little or no use to them, the old pasteboards, lying about their houses and stores in the shape of bonnet and lace, and dress, and skirt, and shoe boxes, etc., and forward them to us at once by express. See the plan in an appeal to our sisters. Those interested in the cause in the South could send us in one week pasteboards [fold in paper] to the whole Confederate army, and we believe they will answer by an immediate effort, this urgent call.
This work is a good work, and we believe that it will be achieved in spite of blockades. God often tests the zeal and devotion of his people, or rather gives it an opportunity to manifest itself that all may see and admire it.
Tennessee Baptist, October 19, 1861.
Unidentified young soldier.  Photograph shows book, probably a bible, in vest pocket.  From Library of Congress collection.

Monday, October 17, 2011

They Have A Chance of Being Shot for Abraham Lincoln

This entry is a letter from King Loepold to Queen Victoria.  "Leopold, King of the Belgians writes to his niece, Queen Victoria, expressing his views on the situation in America. The 'Paris' and 'Robert' he referred to in the letter immediately following are the comte de Paris and the duc de Chartres.  Both young men came to this country with their uncle, the prince de Joinville, and with him joined McClellan's Army of the Potomac." (From" Europe Looks at the Civil War, an anthology edited by Bell Becker Sideman and Lillian Friedman.)

Laeken, 17th October 1861
My Beloved Victoria:

. . . . I regret much Paris and Robert having joined the Federal Army, mixing in a civil war!!  The object is to show courage, to be able to say, "Ils se sont beaucoup distingues."  They have a chance of being shot for Abraham Lincoln and the most rank Radicalism.  I don't think that step will please in France, where Radicalism is at discount fortunately.  The poor Queen is very unhappy about it, but now nothing can be done, only one may wish to see them well out of it.  Poor Queen!. . .

Your devoted and only Uncle, Leopold R.

(A. C. Benson and Viscount Esher, eds. Letters of Queen Victoria)

Leopold I, King of the Belgians and Uncle of Queen Victoria, from Wikimedia Commosn

Friday, October 14, 2011

My Country, May She Be Right

This entry is from Mary Chesnut's Civil War, edited by C. Vann Woodward. Mary Chesnut was married to James Chesnut, United States Senator from South Carolina, 1859-1861, and afterward an Aide to Jefferson Davis, and a Brigadier General in the Confederate Army.

Lucius Quintus Cincinatus Lamar II, who Chesnut speaks of in this quote was a politician and was involved in raising and funding the 19th Mississippi Volunteer Infantry of which he became Lieutenant Colonel.

Lamar (L.Q.C., and the cleverest man I know) said to me in Richmond, in one of those long talks of ours, "Slavery is too heavy a load for us to carry."  We agreed to take up David Crockett's slogan, "My country, may she be right -- but my country, right or wrong."

Lucius Quintus Cincinatus Lamar II, photograph by Matthew Brady from Library of Congress collection.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Life Spared by the Masonic Sign

In October 1861  The Southern Federal Union of Milledgeville, Georgia reported on a death at Manassas with a unique twist.

Life Spared at Manassas by the Masonic Sign --

A gallant Georgia officer was shot down as he was forming his company in line of battle on Manassas Plains, and refusing to be taken from the field while in the exposed position, was again wounded, each time mortally. His regiment, the 8th Georgia, being compelled to fall back during an overwhelming charge of the enemy, the poor fellow, unable to move was made prisoner -- had his watch and money taken from him, and was about to be bayoneted, when he gave the Masonic sign.  They now removed his boots to relieve his suffering, and laid him beside a tree to die.  The life thus spared, owing to a vigorous constitution and religiously observed habits, was prolonged thirty days.  This was the fate of Order Sergeant O. B. Eve, of the Miller Rifles of Rome, Georgia.

Another soldier from the 8th Georgia Infantry Regiment, Private R. Cecil Johnson.
Johnson was also killed during the war, in 1863.  From the Library Of Congress Collection.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Coming or Going

"It has been definitely ascertained since my last dispatch that the enemy are not now in force in front and they they have retired," writes McClellan in the telegraph shown below.

Earlier that day October 12, 1861, McClellan received intelligence that a Confederate force was approaching the Union lines in Northern Virginia.  It wasn't until later he learned that the intelligence was faulty, and that must have been when he wrote this telegram to Lincoln.

Incidentally, this was the same date that McClellan's daughter, Mary, was born.

From the Library of Congress Collection

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

My Knees Knocked Together

This entry is from United States Sanitary Commission Soldiers' Letters From Camp, Battlefield, and Person edited by Lydia Minturn Post.

In a letter dated October 11 1861, Walton Grinnell describes an engagement between the United States ship-of-war Richmond and a rebel steamer on the Mississippi River. This appears to be Grinnell's first battle encounter and it is all so new and exciting to him. The editor noted that Mr. Grinnell was 17 years old at the time.

Day before yesterday our ship had a sharp engagement with the enemy—a naval action! For three hours the shells were bursting and whizzing around us, but only five took effect — wounding three, but killing none, thank Heaven !
To explain: At one o'clock a rebel steamer was discovered up the river. An hour afterwards—greatly to our astonishment, I can assure you—she very pluckily opened fire upon us. At first we laughed at what we called her impudence; but as her shells began to fall around us, and as we found our heaviest gun failed to reach her, things looked disagreeable.
I will confess, and frankly tell you, that the first five or six shells that came whizzing through our rigging made me tremble all over; my knees knocked together; my mouth was bound; I could hardly speak, hardly breathe; I was frightened. But as soon as we " beat to quarters," and I was ordered to my division, all fear left me. The shells still whizzed, but I neither heard nor cared for them. I was intent upon my duty, and, as my division had all the fighting to do, being the only one bearing upon the enemy, I was too much absorbed in the working of my gun to think of any thing else; and I can assure you I felt as happy and unconcerned as ever in my life.
The rebel (who, by the by, was the New York tugboat William H. Webb, armed with four broadsides and two heavy 32-pound rifles) was our superior, inasmuch her guns ranged quite a half mile beyond ours. About one hundred shots were exchanged, and I do not think a single one of our shots hit the enemy.
Half-past 12 p. m., October 11th. The "Webb" is again in sight, and we are preparing for action. I wish it was all over, for I am exceedingly doubtful of the result. Two o'clock p. m. The ship is cleared, and we have given the enemy eight or ten shots, but she does not return them. She is evidently " playing us some trick," but we will never "give up the ship;" and if we only get our rifle 42's (which are expected daily), New Orleans will be ours before Christmas. Five o'clock. The " Webb" is out of sight, so I will continue rny account of the first engagement.

After firing from half-past one until four o'clock the enemy retired, leaving us as bewildered as we were relieved. Besides three shots in our hull, our mizen topmast backstays were shot away. We are in a rather critical position : first, our draft has been increased by six additional guns; the water on the bar is low—we cannot cross: second, the enemy can steam two knots to our one—we cannot run: third, the enemy's guns range further than ours—we cannot fight. These circumstances were communicated to the commodore, who said, " I thoroughly appreciate your position, and will leave myself for ' Pickens,' to obtain some rifle-guns." When these guns arrive, we can defy all seces-siondom."

My imagination has very often presented to me pictures so vivid that I thought they exceeded reality; but I am convinced that the terrible excitement and absorbing interest, the bursting shells and flying splinters, the enthusiasm and huzzas of the men, defy human power to describe. The man that says he felt no fear or trembling for the first few shots in an action, you may stamp as a coward. As for myself, I never had such a sensation—nothing so terrible. After each discharge from a gun, all the crew (officers included), except the loader, sponger, and powder-man, fell flat on their stomachs, thus avoiding the shell that may happen to strike on deck, for, in bursting, the splinters have a tendency to fly upwards. It is laughable to see them all go down at once; but I can assure you it is a very pleasant sensation to even think one's self out of the way of these terrible splinters; as one would ranch prefer being shot away with a solid ball, than to be mangled by one of these ugly missiles. So much for my first sensations in battle. Although I have before been under fire of musketry, yet I can fancy nothing comparable with the whizzing and bursting of rifle-shell.
Walton Grinnell, Acting-master U. S. steamer Nyack.
Unidentified sailor in Union uniform, from the Library of Congress Collection

Monday, October 10, 2011

A Ring With Strings Attached

This entry come from The Abraham Lincoln Papers at the Library of Congress.  It is a letter  D. N Smith of California wrote Lincoln in which he enclosed a most unique gift, a wooden ring.  The letter explains the ring's symbolism, and then the writer goes on to ask Lincoln a favor.

From D. N. Smith to Abraham Lincoln, October 10, 1861
San Bernardino California
October 10th 1861
Dear Sir,
Your meritorious acts, in behalf of our glorious republic, are worthy the highest commendation, of every lover of his country; & wishing to demonstrate my gratitude in more ways than by merely sustaining them; I send you a natural curiosity. Although not as great, as the Buck's horn chair [Seth Kinman, a California hunter and frontiersman, presented President Buchanan with a chair made from elk horns in 1857] it nevertheless seems fully as applicable. It seems but a simple wooden ring interspersed with specks of gold; but this is not all; in the first place, the wood from which it was made, is a rare shrub indigenous to the western slope of the Rockey Mountains; possessing peculiar medicinal properties. The bark is smooth, of a bright red colour, constrasting beautifuly with its dark green leaf; which gives the shrub an appearance of grandeur, not possessed by any of its associate Shrubery. It bears a fruit which in flavour is similar to a sour apple; from which I suppose it derives its spanish name, (mensenita.) The greatest curiosity pertaining to this ring; is the fact it was made by a freak of nature, as you can perceive from the grains of the wood running around the ring. It was a complete single tie of a twig, which had become perfectly consolidated, forming a loop in the centre, nearly as large as the present size of the ring; considering in connection with the above, the place from whence it was taken, & we have quite a remarkable ring. I broke it from a bush growing on the San Bernardino mountain which is the highest mountain in southern California.

Deffinition of the Ring
The Natural ring represents the geographical, & constitutional unity of the United States. When I found it, it was dry, at the heart rotten, & worms had commenced to destroy it. Emblematical of our government when it fell into your hands.
With judgment, Skill, Labour & the tools I brought to bear; I removed the decayed portions, destroyed the worms, & thus perfected the natural ring; As you will the United States. The thirtytwo golden stars (of pure quartz gold) in close proximity, represent the thirtytwo states east of the Rockey Mountains; & the two in the small of the ring our states on this side; though a little farther removed from the balance, we are nevertheless connected by the same principal or ring of Nature. The stars I cut from pure quartz gold in its original state; which represents the states in purity as they will be; when you have destroyed the polutions of past administrations.
With kind regard your humble subject
D. N. Smith
P. S. I am reading medicine, & you would confer a great favour, if you could give me a place in the army as assistant Surgeon; where I could gain much experience. I would be happy to serve my country thus. My constitution is to frail to join the army as a common Soldier
N. B. I send this by way of my Brother in Ohio, because the Post & Express offices are in the hands of the Secessionists, or at least those opposed to our administration, & I do not wish to excite their Suspicion

Petersburg, Va. Three surgeons of 1st Division, 9th Corps, Library of Congress Collection

Friday, October 7, 2011

The Perils of Peace

This entry is from Debow's Review, Agricultural, commercial, industrial progress and resources,  from the Oct-Nov 1861 issue, "Perils of Peace."  Most likely the author of this piece is also the editor and proprietor himself, James Dunwoody Brownson DeBow.   Debow was a former census superintendant, so he knew something about the ethnic make-up of the United States at the time of the Civil War.

What I find interesting about this quote is that Debow seems to have it all wrong.  What he calls the North's weakness in the first sentence of the following quote, really became and even then was one of  this country's strengths.

. . . . The weakness of the North proceeds entirely from its various and incongruous population.  Her people have no opinions or objects in life in common.  So soon as the war with the South is concluded, it is probable she will be dismembered and split up into three or four independent states or nations.  Yankee ascendency has so far held her together, but that ascendency is now struggling for existence against the millions of foreigners who have become more numerous than the native Yankees. 

The danger from too large an infusions of foreigners would be much greater here than at the North. . . .
. . . . . ”To Americans belong America!” But foreigners who have already settled among us are Americans.  The people of other counties have no rights or interest in the South.  They could not complain if we prohibited all immigration, much less can they complain when we only subject them to the disabilities usually imposed on foreigners.  The right of citizenship in most countries, has ever been confined to the native-born.  The ranting democracy of Jefferson and Jackson have largely imbued our people with the notion, that we only hold our country as trustees for “all the world and the rest of mankind.”   National dignity as well as national security, required that the public mind should be disabused of such notions. . . ..

James Dunwoody Brownson DeBow as found at (Debow served as superintending clerk of the census 1853-1855)

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Parson Rippetoe Beheads General Sherman

This entry is from the The Rebellion Record:  A Diary of American Events, Volume III, 1862 edited by Frank Moore.

A Terrible Parson In Battle.—We have about come to the conclusion that the war correspondents for the Southern papers can beat those of the North. A correspondent of the Memphis Appeal says:—
"Parson Rippetoe, a Methodist preacher, and captain of a Virginia company, performed prodigies of valor at the first taking of Sherman's battery, (for it was taken, then lost, then again taken.) He cut the throats of the horses, and then engaged Lieutenant Sherman in a hand-to-hand conflict with sabres. After a ten minutes' fight—both being accomplished swordsmen—he severed Sherman's head from his body at one blow."
We had a pleasant conversation with General Sherman in our office on Monday last, and he did not appear to be aware that he had been beheaded. At any rate he did not allude to the somewhat interesting event. Possibly, however, his memory may have been affected by the operation, for we cannot suppose the Southern parson would exaggerate.—Providence Journal. 
William Tecumseh Sherman as found at

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Specimens of Secessional School Books

This entry is from Vanity Fair, Volume 3, 1861, and it is an excerpt from an article called "Specimens of Secessional School Books:"
Vanity Fair having discovered a want is resolved to supply it. Our Seceding brethren want food for the young mind free from the abolition virus, and we have accordingly prepared a series of Geogrophies, Spelling-books, Grammars &c, in which every idea is a native of the Sunny South, and therefore appropriate to Southern Sonnies. Our caveat is entered with the excellent Jeff.

SOUTH CAROLINA. A vast empire, bounded on the North by the Arctic Ocean, East by Fort Sumter, South by the Tortugas, and West by the Pacific. The population is illimitable, the productions incalculable, its resources inexhaustible. The people are happy because the Better Half of themselves are slaves. Its Chivalry awes the World by valiant deeds; its navy defies the battle and the breeze.
Production – South Carolina produces chattels of every shade, to suit the taste of the purchaser.

Diseases – The prevailing disorders are violent Retches and Sicksession. A Dr. Jackson once invented a cure for these complaints.

Literature – The standard of literature is high. The Charleston Mercury, the journal of the western world, is renowned for the purity of its English and the elevation of its morals. Its circulation is enormous. It justly holds every man a traitor who does not steal from the U. S. Government.

The peculiarity of this work is its proper use of terms. For instance we say “the noun is the slave of the verb.” “The verb is the master of the accusative.” Great stress is laid on Passives and Supines. Obedience is taught in every line. . . .
Vanity Fair Cover from University of Michigan 's Online collection

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

I Have No Money To Send You

This entry comes for the University of Virginia's Valley of the Shadow Project.  It is an excerpt from a letter dated October 4, 1861 written by Henry H. Dedrick, a private in the 52nd Virginia Infantry, to his wife who was holding down the fort back at the home front in Rockingham County, Virginia. 

Thousands of soldiers' letters sent home must have said similar things, but it is touching none the less, and reminds us that the war affected just about everyone.

. . . . Dear Wife I have no money to send to you and I don't know when I will get any and if you want any you must try to sell some rye if you can spare it, and if you can't spare it you must try and sell one of the calves and get what you can. You must try and do the best you can while I am absent from you, but I hope and trust that I will return again safe and sound. And if I should not return no more I hope that we will meet in heaven and there to meet to part no more for ever and ever. I want you all to pray for me that I may get there and I will do all I can to meet you all there. I thank god that he has made it so plain that I can just see how I am placed . . .
Unidentified Confederate Soldier from the Library of Congress Collection

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Their Cause is Slavery

This entry is excerpts from a speech made by Charles Sumner on October 1, 1861 before the Republican State Convention at Worcester, Massachusetts entitled Union and Peace! How They Shall Be Restored.

Sumner was known as a powerful orator and the leader of the antislavery forces in Massachusetts.

[Upon the appearance of Mr. Sumner on the platform, he was most cordially greeted by the whole convention and the large audience in the galleries.  Hon. H. L. Dawes President of the Convention, introduced him in a few felicitous words whereupon the warm applause of the vast assembly burst forth again with great enthusiasm, ending the three rousing cheers.]
. . . .Slavery. Often have I exclaimed, in times past, that our first great object was the Emancipation of the National Government, so that it should no longer be the slave of Slavery, ready to do its bidding in all things. But this victory has been won. It was won first by the ballot box, when Abraham Lincoln was elected President of the United States; [applause] — and it was won the second time by the cartridge box, when, at the command of the President, the guns of Fort Sumter returned defiance to the rebel artillery. [Three cheers.] Such was the madness of Slavery that the first was not enough. Unhappily, the second was needed to complete the work.

 . . . It is Slavery which has been the origin of our party divisions, keeping men asunder who ought to act together. But with the expulsion of this disturbing influence, the apology for these divisions has ceased. All patriots,—all who truly love their country—may now act together; no matter in what party combination they may have formerly appeared; no matter, of what accent is the speech by which their present duties are declared. Call them democrats, Union men, native or foreigners, what you will, are we not all engaged in a common cause ? 

 . . . .The Government is assailed by a Rebellion without precedent. Never before since Satan warred upon the Almighty has Rebellion assumed such a front; [applause]—and never before has it begun in such a cause. The rebels are numerous and powerful; and their cause is Slavery. [Sensation.]

It is the very essence of rebellion to be audacious, unhesitating, unscrupulous. Rebellion sticks at nothing; least of all, with a rebellion which began in Slavery. It can be sucessfully encountered only by a vigor and energy which shall surpass its own. Patriotism surely is not less potent as a motive than treason. It must be invoked. By all the memorial of your fathers, who founded this Republic and delivered to you the precious heritage; and by all the sentiments of gratitude for the good you have enjoyed beneath its protecting care, you are summoned to its defence. Defence, did I say?  It if with mortification that I utter the word; but you all know the truth.

The rebel conspirators have set upon us, and now besiege the National Government. They besiege, it at Washington, where are the President and his Cabinet and the national archives. They besiege it at Fort Monroe on the Atlantic, at St. Louis on the Mississippi, and now they besiege it in Kentucky. Everywhere we are on the defensive. [Sensation.] Strongholds have been wrested from us. Soldiers gathered under the folds of our national flag have been compelled to surrender. Citizens, whose only offense has been their loyalty, have been driven from their homes. Bridges have been burned. Railways have been disabled. Steamers and ships have been seized. The largest navy yard of the country has been appropriated. Commerce has been hunted on the sea, and property, where. ever it can be reached, ruthlessly robbed or destroyed.. . .

Do you ask in whose name all this has been done. The answer it easy. Not "in the name of God and the Continental Congress,'' as Ethan Allen summoned Ticonderoga; but "in the name of Slavery." Yes; in the name of Slavery, and nothing else, has all this crime, destruction and ravage been perpetrated; and the work is still proceeding.

Look at the war as you will, and you will always see Slavery.  Never were the words of the Roman orator more applicable: Nullum facinus exstit nisi per te; nullum flagitium sine te. "No guilt unless through thee, no crime without thee." Slavery is its inspiration; its motive power; its end and aim ; its be-all and end-all.

It is often said that the war will make an end of Slavery. This it probable. But it it surer still, that the overthrow of Slavery will at once make an end of the war. [Tumultuous applause and cheers.]  . . .

Charles Sumner, from the Library of Congress Collection