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[535] to the North and to the South, exacting no condition but that we should be duly accredited from Richmond as bearers of propositions looking to the establishment of peace, thus proffering a basis for conference as comprehensive as we could desire. It seemed to us that the President opened a door which had previously been closed against the Confederate States, for a full interchange of sentiments, free discussion of conflicting opinions, and an untrammelled effort to remove all causes of controversy by liberal negotiation. We, indeed, could not claim the benefit of a safe-conduct which had been extended to us in a character we had no right to assume, and had never affected to possess, but the uniform declaration of our Executive and Congress, and their thrice-repeated, and as often repulsed attempts to open negotiations,furnished a sufficient pledge that this conciliatory manifestation on the part of the President of the United States would be met by them in a temper of equal magnanimity. We had, therefore, no hesitation in declaring that if this correspondence was communicated to the President of the Confederate States, he would promptly embrace the opportunity presented for seeking a peaceful solution of this unhappy strife. We feel confident you will join in our profound regret that the spirit which dictated the first step toward peace should not have continued to animate the councils of your President. Had the representatives of the two governments met to consider this question, the most momentous ever submitted to human statesmanship, in a temper of becoming moderation and equity, followed as their deliberations have been by the prayers and benedictions of every patriot and Christian on the habitable globe. Who is there so bold as to pronounce that the frightful waste of individual happiness and public prosperity which is daily saddening the universal heart, might not have been terminated; or if the desolation and carnage of war must still be endured through weary years of blood and suffering, that there might not at least have been infused into its conduct something more of the spirit which softens and partially redeems its brutalities. Instead of the safe-conduct which we solicited, and which your first letter gave us every reason to suppose would be extended, for the purpose of instituting negotiations in which neither government would compromise its rights or its dignity, a document has been presented which provokes as much indignation as surprise. It bears no feature of resemblance to that which was originally offered; as unlike any paper which ever before emanated from the constitutional Executive of a free people. Addressed to whom it may concern, it precludes negotiations, and prescribes in advance terms and conditions of peace. It returns to the original policy of no bargaining, no negotiations, no truce with rebels until every man shall have laid down his arms, submitted to the Government, and sued for mercy. What may be the explanation of this sudden and entire change in the views of the President; of this rude withdrawal of a courteous overture for negotiation at the moment it was likely to be accepted; of this emphatic recall of words of peace just uttered, and fresh blasts of war to the bitter end, we leave for the speculation of those who have the means or inclination to penetrate the mysteries of his Cabinet, or fathom the caprice of his imperial will. It is enough for us to say that we have no use whatever for the paper which has been placed in our hands. We could not transmit it to the President of the Confederate States without offering him an indignity, dishonoring ourselves, and incurring the well-merited scorn of our countrymen. While an ardent desire for peace pervades the people of the Confederate States, we rejoice to believe that there are few, if any, among them who would purchase it at the expense of liberty, honor, and self-respect. If it can be secured only by their submission to terms of conquest, the generation is yet unborn which will witness its restoration. If there be any military autocrat in the North who is entitled to proffer the conditions of this manifesto, there is none in the South authorized to entertain them. Those who control our armies are the servants of the people, not their masters; and they have no more inclination than they have right to subvert the social institutions of sovereign States to overthrow their established Constitution, and to barter away their heritage of self-government.

This correspondence will not, however, we trust, prove wholly barren of good results. If there is any citizen of the Confederate States who has clung to the hope that peace was possible with this Administration of the Federal Government, it will strip from their eyes the last film of such delusion; or if there be any whose heart has grown faint under the suffering and agony of this bloody struggle, it will inspire them with fresh energy to endure and brave whatever may yet be requisite to preserve to themselves and their children all that gives dignity and value to life, or hope and consolation to death; and if there are any patriots or Christians in your land who shrink appalled from the illimitable vista of private misery and public calamity which stretches before them, we pray that in their bosoms a resolution may be quickened to reclaim the abused authority and vindicate the outraged civilization of their country. For the solicitude you have manifested to inaugurate a movement which contemplates results the most noble and humane, we return our sincere thanks, and are most respectfully and truly, your obedient servants,

Clifton House, July 20.
Col. W. C. Jewett, Cataract House, Niagara Falls, New York:
sir: We are in receipt of your note advising us of the departure of Honorable Horace Greeley from the Falls; that he regrets the sad termination

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