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‘The question whether the men of the Fifty-fourth were legally enlisted into the service of the United States is about to be put before a court-martial here,—that is, a man of the regiment is to be tried by a court-martial for a military offence, and he will put in a plea in bar of trial, on the ground that he is not amenable to a court-martial because he is not a soldier; that he is not a soldier because he was illegally enlisted,— hence he is no soldier.’

Lieutenant-Colonel Hooper then recited the Act of July 22, 1861, saying that its provisions were read to the man and subscribed to by him. But the Government instructed its agents that it could only pay the Fifty-fourth (to which this man belonged) according to the provision of the Act of July 17, 1862. He asked assistance in solving the question in behalf of his men, and further asked for a decision from Judge Holt bearing upon the point at issue.

Advices from the North informed us of the efforts of the Massachusetts Congressmen in Washington to equalize the pay of colored and white troops. The first bill offered by Senator Wilson was not retrospective, and received the opposition it merited in Congress and by the press. To remedy this defect the senator reported a joint resolution on February 3, which, variously amended, came up until March 2, when it was returned to committee. Senator Fessenden, of Maine, led the opposition. The key-note of his remarks in debate was: ‘What propriety is there in our going back and paying them for services already rendered?’ The Maine senator's course received the merited scorn of Wendell Phillips at a meeting of the Antislavery Society. He said,—

Senator Fessenden was the son of one of the first Abolitionists of that State, the ablest debater in the Senate, the leader ’

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