except in the South
, where a stable Government is already established, which will ere long receive acquisitions of membership in the States to which you belong.
will hardly attempt coercion, it would be unconstitutional
. Would you meanly serve another people when your States have gone, even though no war grows out of the separation, or would you be base enough, for your selfish ends to do so, were there a war against the people from whom you have sprung, to whom you are allied, and whom you can now serve so well?’
For days and even weeks the Government
gave no sign nor token, and when at last it did, insidious speciousness of presentation had done sad work.
Many able and unselfish officers, without a thought of treason, or without desire to do wrong or to do violence to the Government
, found themselves, rather unwittingly than venally, in the toils of the enemy.
These conditions prevailed at Washington
and Southward, both in the army and the navy.
Those officers who were deemed most likely to be influenced to suit the ends of the conspirators, had been placed, as said before, within favoring districts.
On the 4th of March, 1861, Isaac Toucey
, who had been Secretary of the Navy
for the four previous years, was succeeded by Gideon Welles
, of the same State.
He remained in that position for the eight years following.
At that date the chiefs of Bureaus were as follows: Of Yards and Docks, Captain Joseph Smith
; of Construction, John Lenthal
; of Provisions and Clothing, Horatio Bridge; of Ordnance and Hydrography, Captain George W. Magruder
; of Medicine, Surgeon William Whelan
These officers had been incumbents for years, and remained throughout the Civil War
, with the exception of Captain Magruder