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[246] Greeley and Mr. Gerrit Smith. A Democrat of pronounced repute, still his appearance would import no partisan aspect to the great argument, and would excite no feelings but those of admiration and respect among even extreme men of opposite opinion. Public expectation looked to him, and soon after it was made known that he had already volunteered his services to Mr. Davis. Mr. O'Conor's course during the war was decided, understood and consistent, but never offensive nor intrusive; his personal honor without reproach; his courage without fear; his learning, erudition and propriety of professional judgment conceded as most eminent.

There was a general agreement among the gentlemen of the Republican party whom I have mentioned, that Mr. Davis did not by thought or act participate in a conspiracy against Mr. Lincoln; and none of those expressed that conviction more emphatically than Mr. Thaddeus Stevens. The single subject on which light was desired by them was concerning the treatment of our soldiers while in the hands of the enemy. The Tribune of May, 17, 1865, tells the real condition of feeling at that moment, and unequivocally shows that it was not favorable to Mr. Davis on this matter.

At the instance of Mr. Greeley, Mr. Wilson, and, as I was given to understand, of Mr. Stevens, I went to Canada the first week in January, 1866, taking Boston on my route, there to consult with Governor Andrew and others. While at Montreal General John C. Breckinridge came from Toronto, at my request, for the purpose of giving me information. There I had placed in my posession the official archives of the Government of the Confederate States, which I read and considered, especially all those messages and other acts of the Executive with the Senate in its secret sessions concerning the care and exchange of prisoners. I found that the supposed inhuman and unwarlike treatment of their own captured soldiers by agents of our Government was a most prominent and frequent topic. That those reports, current then, perhaps even to this hour, in the South, were substantially incorrect is little to the practical purpose. From those documents, not made to meet the public eye, but used in secret session, and from inquiries by me of those

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