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[194]

In the course of his instructions to Lockwood, Dix proceeded to settle grave questions of state by military instructions. He advised that ‘The people, if they return to their allegiance to the United States, should make such temporary provision for their own government, not inconsistent with the Constitution of the United States, as they may think best. For the time being, it seems to me that it would be well for them to act with western Virginia, and hold elections by proclamation of the governor.’

On November 15th, the day after his expedition started, Dix wrote to President Lincoln, enclosing a copy of his proclamation to the people of Accomac and Northampton, with the hope that what he had done would meet with his approbation; and stated that he had sent 4,500 men on this expedition.

Reaching the borders of Virginia, November 16th, General Lockwood sent a flag of truce to the Confederate troops, some 10 miles below the line, but found no force to treat with, as they had either dispersed or fallen back to Eastville. The bearer of this flag reported, from Temperanceville, ‘We have thus far had a triumphant welcome and uninterrupted march.’

Lockwood reported from Drummondtown, on the 22d, that the larger portion of his command was at that place, but he had sent two regiments, with cavalry and artillery, to Eastville. After describing the points selected for his bases of supplies, he stated that he had found and secured seven new 6-pounder guns, and a number of small-arms of little value. After declaring that the people manifested a readiness to submit to the Federal government, and that they were arranging to hold county meetings for this purpose, he wrote: ‘The basis of the system in western Virginia will be adopted as a temporary measure. All with whom I have conversed look to an annexation with Maryland as an event much to be desired whenever it can constitutionally be accomplished. This, they think, can be done by regarding themselves, together with western Virginia, as the true State of Virginia, and inducing the State thus constituted and the State of Maryland to pass the necessary laws.’ He advised that Dix write to the governor of West Virginia, asking him to make proclamation, as soon as the people have

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