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Washington, D. C., Aug. 24, 1861.
To his Excellency, B. Magoffin, Governor of the State of Kentucky:
Sir: Your letter of the 19th inst., in which you “urge the removal from the limits of Kentucky of the military force now organized and in camp within that State,” is received.

I may not possess full and precisely accurate knowledge upon this subject; but I believe it is true that there is a military force in camp within Kentucky, acting by authority of the United States; which force is not very large, and is not now being augmented.

I also believe that some arms have been furnished to this force by the United States.

I also believe that this force consists exclusively of Kentuckians, having their camp in the immediate vicinity of their own homes, and not assailing or menacing any of the good people of Kentucky.

In all I have done in the premises, I have acted upon the urgent solicitation of many Kentuckians, and in accordance with what I believed, and still believe, to be the wish of a majority of all the Union-loving people of Kentucky.

While I have conversed on the subject with many eminent men of Kentucky, including a large majority of her members of Congress, I do not remember that any one of them, or any other person, except your Excellency and the bearers of your Excellency's letter, has urged me to remove the military force from Kentucky or to disband it. One other very worthy citizen of Kentucky did solicit me to have the augmenting of the force suspended for a time.

Taking all the means within my reach to form a judgment, I do not believe it is the popular wish of Kentucky that the force shall be removed beyond her limits; and, with this impression, I must respectfully decline to remove it.

I most cordially sympathize with your Excellency in the wish to preserve the peace of my own native State, Kentucky; but it is with regret I search for and cannot find, in your not very short letter, any declaration or intimation that you entertain any desire for the preservation of the Federal Union.

The Legislature convened September 3d, but was not fully organized till the 5th, when Magoffin submitted a Message based on the assumption of Kentucky's proper and perfect neutrality between the belligerents North and South of her; complaining that she had suffered in her commerce and property from the acts of either; but more especially that a Federal force had recently been organized and encamped in the heart of that State without the permission of her lawful authorities--(Beriah Magoffin, to wit ;) whereupon he proposed to so amend an act of the late Legislature as to enable the Military Board to borrow money for the purchase of arms and munitions for the defense of the State, etc., etc. lie desired the Legislature authoritatively to request all Military organizations within the State, not under her authority, to be disbanded forthwith; and complained of the introduction of arms by the Federal Government and their distribution among private citizens, which — considering that the incipient Rebels obtained a large proportion thereof, and in due time carried them off to the camps of the Secession forces — was unreasonable. On the main question at issue, he said:

Kentucky has meant to await the exhausting of all civil remedies before she will reconsider the question of assuming new external relations; but I have never understood that they will tamely submit unconditionally to the aggressions of the North; that they renounce their sympathy with the people of her aggrieved sister States; nor that they will approve of a war to subjugate the South. Still can I not construe any of their votes as meaning that they will prosecute a coercive war against their Southern brethren. They meant only that they have still some hope of the restoration and perpetuation of the Union; and, until that hope is blasted, they will not alter their existing relations. Their final decision will be law to me; and I will execute every constitutional act of their representatives as vigilantly and faithfully as though it originated with myself.

These few words elicited no sympathetic response from the Legislature, fresh from the people, and imbued with

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