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[69] it because of a conviction in my mind that the Union men of Missouri, constituting, when united, a vast majority of the whole people, have entered into a pestilent factional quarrel among themselves—General Curtis, perhaps not of choice, being the head of one faction, and Governor Gamble that of the other. After months of labor to reconcile the difficulty, it seemed to grow worse and worse, until I felt it my duty to break it up somehow; and as I could not remove Governor Gamble, I had to remove General Curtis.

Now that you are in the position, I wish you to undo nothing merely because General Curtis or Governor Gamble did it, but to exercise your own judgment and do right for the public interest.

Let your military measures be strong enough to repel the invader and keep the peace, and not so strong as to unnecessarily harass and persecute the people. It is a difficult role, and so much greater will be the honor if you perform it well. If both factions, or neither, shall abuse you, you will probably be about right. Beware of being assailed by one and praised by the other.

Yours truly,


In acknowledging the President's letter on June 1, I concluded by saying:

I have strong hopes that the Missouri State Convention, at its approaching session, will adopt such measures for the speedy emancipation of slaves as will secure the acquiescence of the large majority of Union men, though perhaps not quite satisfactory to either extreme. If this hope be realized, one of my most embarrassing difficulties will be removed, or at least greatly diminished.

The military problem in that department, as understood by me and by my superiors in Washington, was at that time a comparatively simple one, though my predecessor in command of the department entertained different views. With my views of the military situation, whether confined to my own department or extended to embrace the entire country, there was but one course to

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