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[414] upon which he wished to see me was of vastly greater importance, involving the safety of the country and the maintenance of the Constitution. Mr. Evarts then asked my consent that the President might at any time before the close of the impeachment trial send my nomination to the Senate as Secretary of War in place of Mr. Stanton. I asked upon what ground, and for what reasons, the proposition was made, which question was then answered in part, and in the evening of the same day more fully, as hereafter related. It having been announced that General Grant was waiting at the door for me, this first interview was cut short with an agreement to renew it about eight o'clock the same evening. Before separating I asked Mr. Evarts whether I was at liberty to mention the subject to any other person. Mr. Evarts replied: ‘I suppose you mean General Grant.’ I said: ‘Yes; my relations with General Grant, and his with the President, are such that I do not wish to act in such a matter without consulting him.’ Mr. Evarts said he could not give consent that any person should be informed that such a proposition had been made on behalf of the President, and suggested some objections to consulting General Grant on the subject, for the reason of his being a candidate for the Presidency, but finally intimated that it might be well to talk to General Grant about it incidentally, and thus learn his views.

While walking with General Grant after dinner the same day, I said to him, in effect, that I had reason to believe that a proposition like the one referred to above would probably be made to me, and that upon the theory, as I understood, that the President would not be convicted by the Senate, and I asked General Grant's opinion in regard to it. General Grant replied that he had supposed there was no reasonable doubt of the President's removal, but if that was not the case, or if it were, he (General Grant) would be glad to have me as Secretary of War during the remainder of the term; that Mr. Wade would have some difficulty in making up a cabinet for so short a portion of a term.

About eight o'clock P. M. of the same day (April 21) I again called upon Mr. Evarts at the hotel, when a long conversation took place upon the subject referred to in the morning. The substance of what Mr. Evarts said was as follows: He was fully satisfied that the President could not be convicted upon the evidence; if he was removed, it would be done wholly from supposed party necessity; that this was the opinion and feeling of

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