commander, Brigadier-General William S. Harney
, would not consent that any such action be taken without orders from Washington
I called upon Governor Jackson
for his regiments, but received no reply.
In my visit to General Harney
after the attack on Fort Sumter
, I urged the necessity of prompt measures to protect the St. Louis Arsenal, with its large stores of arms and ammunition, then of priceless value, and called his attention to the rumor of an intended attack upon the arsenal by the secessionists then encamped near the city under the guise of State militia.
In reply, the general denounced in his usual vigorous language the proposed attempt upon the arsenal; and, as if to clinch his characterization of such a ‘—outrage,’ said: ‘Why, the State
has not yet passed an ordinance of secession; she has not gone out of the Union
That did not indicate to me that General Harney
's Union principles were quite up to the standard required by the situation, and I shared with many others a feeling of great relief when he was soon after relieved, and Captain Nathaniel Lyon
succeeded to the command of the department.
Yet I have no doubt General Harney
was, from his own point of view, thoroughly loyal to the Union
, though much imbued with the Southern
doctrines which brought on secession and civil war. His appropriate place after that movement began was that of the honorable retirement in which he passed the remainder of his days, respected by all for his sterling character and many heroic services to his country.
Two days later, Captain Lyon
, then commanding the St. Louis Arsenal, having received from the War Department authority to enroll and muster into the service the Missouri
volunteers as they might present themselves, I reported to him and acted under his orders.
Fortunately, a large number of the loyal citizens of St. Louis
had, in anticipation of a call to take up arms in support