accepted by government; and it was not until the last of June that Captain How was ordered with his command to Fort Warren, Boston Harbor, where he ranked as senior officer in the Fourteenth Massachusetts Volunteers. He conducted himself with marked ability; but after the arrival of the Colonel to take command of the regiment, an unfortunate controversy arose, and Captain How was superseded. A letter written to Governor Andrew soon after this sets forth at length Captain How's own defence, and seems completely to exonerate him from blame. Were it not for the personal nature of the discussion, the letter might be quoted at length. The conclusion is as follows:—
The substance of all this is just this. I was senior captain of the Fourteenth Regiment; I was at the Head of a splendid company, and was considered the best officer in the regiment. This is not what I say, but what others say. I only say I did just what I thought was right, and just as well as I knew how. Now I am removed. It is unjust and wrong. So says every soldier and civilian who knows me. I enlisted as a private, but was chosen captain. If those whose opinion is worth anything should tell me that I had shown myself a poor officer, I would enlist as private again; but until then, if I should take position lower than I previously held, I should show a lack of pride unbecoming a soldier. Now all in one word. I want to be major of one of the regiments now forming. It is a position that I have earned by hard work, as captain of the first new company raised in this State, and as the subject of misfortunes for which I am in no degree responsible. It is a position that I know I can fill as well as many who are now of that rank. If the recommendation of the citizens of Haverhill would have any weight, it is at my service. Except those who had not the patriotism to enlist as soldiers, and are now working for position, every man will be willing to trust the reputation of the town with me. I want to try to fill this position; and if I fail, I will take a musket with zeal. I shall place on file the recommendation of several military men who know me well, and have volunteered their assistance. If there is still a place vacant, I hope my claim will not be overlooked.