the year 1864.
After they had enlisted, and were mustered into the service, some of them complained that they had been deceived, and that they had been forced into the army against their will, and had been brought to this country by false representations.
It is not our purpose to decide whether these complaints were just or not: it is sufficient to say that they were made, and were brought to the attention of Secretary Seward
by the gentlemen representing the governments to which these men belonged, and by him to the attention of Governor Andrew
The correspondence shows very clearly, that no blame could properly be attached to the State Government
, or to the United-States officers who had mustered them into the service.
It appears that the explanations made by Governor Andrew
, and the mercantile firm who had brought the men to this country, were satisfactory, as none of the men were discharged from the service; and, after a while, the controversy ceased.
We have always regarded the enlistment of these foreigners as unfortunate, as it reflected in some degree upon the patriotism of the people of Massachusetts
, and afforded to the enemies of the Commonwealth
an opportunity for disparaging remarks.
It was the only transaction during the war, connected with the enlistment of men to fill the quota of the State
, which required explanation, and which was of questionable propriety.
We have now reached the culminating point of the war. For four long and weary years the energies of the Commonwealth
, its mind, and its wealth, had been devoted to the suppression of a Rebellion whose gigantic proportions were without parallel in the history of Christian nations.
There had been no cessation of labor and effort, no holding back of means and men, for the national defence.
The magnitude of the Rebellion
, and the firm determination of the people of Massachusetts
to suppress it, had absorbed all other questions, and obliterated from the public mind all minor issues.
On the 3d of April, Governor Andrew
received the following telegram from Secretary Stanton