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“  the second lieutenants were to be promoted from the ranks. Thousands of the young men of the country from law-schools and colleges were applying for commissions, and the Government could select young men of talent and character. There never was a time in the history of the country when men of talent, men of culture, men of experience, men of fortune, men who have mastered all that could be mastered in the colleges and institutions of learning of the country, are seeking, as they are now seeking, admission into the army.” Mr. Nesmith desired to know why the regulation requiring a person from civil life to be examined by a board of officers had not been complied with. Mr. Wilson replied, that “the object was to get a military force into the field as speedily as possible, and the Government was, of course, compelled, by the exigencies of the service, by the condition of the country, to do in this case, what it was compelled to do in some other cases-disregard forms and regulations.” Mr. Wilson said, that, in lieu of the regulations, the colonels who were mostly army officers, had been directed to examine the cases of line officers when they report for duty, and if they were disqualified, to report them to the department, and their commissions would be withheld. Mr. Latham, of California, thought a degree of partiality was shown in the appointments that was creating discontent in army. Mr. Wilson was aware that some dissatisfaction had been created by departing from the rule of seniority in the appointments. The desire had been to take officers who were fitted for responsible positions to make the army most effective. “This army of ours,” he said, “is paralyzed toward the head. Your ablest officers are young captains and lieutenants; and if I wished to-day to organize a heavy military force, such as we are calling into the field, I would abolish the army as the first act, and I then would take officers from the army, and place them where their talents fit them to go, without reference to the rank they occupied in the old regiments. There are men who are field-officers, that ought to be second lieutenants; and there are second lieutenants who would make generals. That is the condition of our army to-day; and the nearer you come toward the head, until you reach perhaps the distinguished commander of the army, the less ability you have.” Mr. Nesmith's amendment was rejected. Mr. Nesmith moved to strike out “three years,” and insert “five years,” for enlistments in 1861 and 1862. He moved the amendment, he said, to secure uniformity in enlistments. He thought, if there had been a loyal army, these difficulties would never have occurred. “No man here,” he declared, “will live to see a smaller standing army than the army we have to-day, with the increase for which this bill provides.” Mr. Lane, of Kansas, “hoped the Senator from Oregon would not persist in his amendment. Men prefer a three years to a five years service. The argument in favor of the three years enlistment is this, that by it you can fill up the regiments in time for service in the present war; without it, you cannot; if it is insisted upon, the army cannot be enlisted.” The amendment was rejected. Mr. Grimes, of Iowa, proposed to amend the bill by adding: “In selecting and appointing officers from the army into regiments hereby created, the relative rank by them held in the army shall be preserved.” Mr. Fessenden, of Maine, thought this amendment would not effect the object. Mr. Lane, of Kansas, said, “Confusion would ensue in the new regiments by the adoption of the amendment,” and it was withdrawn. Mr. Doolittle thought some provision ought to be inserted in the bill to secure officers going into the new regiments, their rights as officers of the army. Mr. Wilson said, there could be no such provision, for, when officers leave the old regiments and go into the new, their places are immediately supplied by new nominations. He agreed with Mr. Nesmith that we should never live to see the army brought back where it then was. He was willing to trust the Congress that would be there at the end of the contest. The bill with the amendments was then reported to the Senate. Mr. Fessenden moved to amend Mr. King's amendment providing for the reduction of the army six months after the rebellion should cease, by inserting, “one year,” instead of “six months.” Mr. King expressed his willingness to accept the amendment. Mr. McDougall, of California, was opposed to the amendment proposed by Mr. King. He believed it would be economy to increase permanently the army. He believed it desirable for the morale of the force to be added. We should have better officers; men who propose to devote themselves for their lives to the profession of arms. Mr. Foster, of Connecticut, was opposed to Mr. King's amendment. “It is assuming what we have not the foresight to determine. Let to-morrow take care of itself. Let us be wise to-day, and not attempt to be wise for to-morrow; for to-morrow may bring exigencies, and must bring exigencies, about which we know nothing to-day.” Mr. Rice believed, “as a measure of economy, the army should be increased.” On the fifteenth, the Senate resumed the consideration of the bill, and Mr. Fessenden's amendment to Mr. King's amendment was agreed to. The question recurring on Mr. King's amendment as amended, Mr. Wilson said, he was opposed to the amendment, but upon its being pressed by Mr. King, wishing to obtain a united vote, he had said he would not resist it; but upon further reflection he must change the assurance then given, and oppose it. “Congress,” he declared, “would be as wise one year after we have put down the rebellion as they were to-day.” Mr. Harris, of New-York, said the measure of increasing the army had been entered upon as an administration measure. The adoption of the amendment would be “virtually, practically, indirectly to defeat this measure of the administration, for, I maintain, that, if this amendment be adopted, we convert these regiments ”
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