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Doc. 156.-General Harney's proclamation.

To the People of the State of Missouri and the city of St. Louis.
military Department of the West, St. Louis, May 11, 1861.
I have just returned to this post, and have assumed the military command of this department. No one can more deeply regret the deplorable state of things existing here than myself. The past cannot be recalled. I can only deal with the present and the future,

I most anxiously desire to discharge the delicate and onerous duties devolved upon me, so as to preserve the public peace. I shall carefully abstain from the exercise of any unnecessary powers, and from all interference with the proper functions of the public officers of the State and city. I therefore call upon the public authorities and the people to aid me in preserving the public peace.

The military force stationed in this department by the authority of the Government, and now under my command, will only be used in the last resort to preserve the peace. I trust I may be spared the necessity of resorting to martial law, but the public peace must be preserved, and the lives and property of the people protected. Upon a careful review of my instructions, I find I have no authority to change the location of the “Home Guards.”

To avoid all cause of irritation and excitement, if called upon to aid the local authorities in preserving the public peace, I shall in preference make use of the regular army.

I ask the people to pursue their peaceful avocations, and to observe the laws and orders of their local authorities, and to abstain from the excitements of public meetings and heated discussions. My appeal, I trust, may not be in vain, and I pledge the faith of a soldier to the earnest discharge of my duty.

William S. Harney, Brigadier-General U. S. A., Commanding Dept.

--National Intelligencer, May 17.

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