Chapter 23: the War in Missouri.-doings of the Confederate Congress. --Affairs in Baltimore.--Piracies.
- Treasonable work in Missouri, 538.
-- Bird's Point fortified
-- Generals Pillow, Polk, and Pope, 539.
-- General Lyon's expedition to the Interior of Missouri, 540.
-- battle near Booneville, 541.
-- Governor Jackson gathering insurgents
-- Major Sturgis in pursuit of them, 542.
-- condition of Affairs in Missouri
-- commotion everywhere, 543.
-- character of the rebellion
-- acts of the Confederate Congress, 544.
-- financial schemes of the Confederates, 545.
-- origin and character of the Cotton loan, 546.
-- retaliatory acts
-- the conspirators' head
-- quarters transferred to Richmond, 547.
-- Davis's journey to Richmond, 548.
-- Davis's speech and residence at Richmond, 549.
-- Beauregard's infamous proclamation, 550.
-- disloyalty in Maryland, 551.
-- martial Law in Baltimore
-- arrest of Marshal Kane
-- the Police Commissioners, 552.
-- Colonel Kenly
-- arms secreted
-- arrest and imprisonment of Police Commissioners, 553.
-- disloyal Marylanders in Richmond
-- flag presentation, 554.
-- pirates on the Chesapeake, 555.
-- piratical operations en the ocean, 556.
-- capture of the Savanntah, 557.
-- capture and destruction of the Petrel
-- increase of the National Navy
-- iron-clad vessels of War, 559.
-- wants of the Navy supplied, 560.
Let us turn for a moment from the contemplation of the aspect of affairs in Virginia
, and in the immediate vicinity of the National Capital
, to that of the course of events in the great valley of the Mississippi, and especially in Missouri
, where, as we have observed, the loyalists and disloyalists had begun a sharp conflict for the control of the State
, early in May.
The first substantial victory of the former had been won at St. Louis
, in the loyal action of the State Convention,1
and in the seizure of Camp Jackson ;2
and its advantages, imperiled by the treaty for pacification between Generals Harney
were secured by the refusal of the Government
to sanction that arrangement, and of General Lyon
to treat with the disloyal Governor Jackson
The latter plainly saw the force of this advantage, and proceeded immediately to array the State
militia, under his control, in opposition to Lyon
and his troops and the General Government
, and, by the violence of immediate war, to sever Missouri
from the Union
As we have observed,4 Governor Jackson
, by proclamation, called “into the service of the State
fifty thousand of the militia, “for the purpose of repelling invasion,” et coetera;
in other words, he called into the service of the disloyal politicians of Missouri
a host of men to repel the visible authority of the National Government
, in the form of United States troops and regiments of loyal citizens of the Commonwealth
The Legislature worked in harmony with him, and various moneys of the State
, such as the School Fund, the money provided for the payment of the July interest of the State
debt, and other available means, to the amount of over three millions of dollars, were placed at the disposal of the conspirators, for military purposes.
declared in his proclamation that his object was peace; that he had proposed the fairest terms for conciliation, but they were rejected, and that now nothing was left for him to do but to resist “invasion” by force of arms.
At Jefferson City
, the capital of the State
, he raised the standard of revolt, with General Sterling Price
as military commander.
promptly took up the gauntlet cast down by the Governor
He had already taken measures for the security of the important post at
, by sending a regiment of Missouri
volunteers, under Colonel Shuttner
, to occupy and fortify Bird's Point
That point is a few feet higher than Cairo
, and a battery upon it perfectly commanded the entire ground
occupied by the National
troops at the latter place.
, of the Engineers
who constructed the works there, called attention early to the importance of occupying that point, for its possession by the insurgents would make Cairo
so strongly fortified his camp, that he was in no fear of any force the insurgents were likely to assail it with.
But he was there none too early, and cast up his fortifications none too soon, for General Pillow
, who was collecting a large force in Western Tennessee
for the capture of Cairo
, made Bird's Point
the most important objective in his plan.
worked diligently for the accomplishment of his purpose, efficiently aided by B. F. Cheatham
, a more accomplished soldier of Tennessee
, who served with distinction under General Patterson
in the war in Mexico
He was among the first of his class in Tennessee
to join the insurgents, and was now holding the commission of a brigadier-general in the service of the conspirators.
was superseded in command by Leonidas Polk
, a graduate of the Military Academy at West Point
, and Bishop
of the Protestant Episcopal Church of the Diocese of Louisiana
Early in July, Polk
accepted the commission of major-general in the “Provisional Army of the Confederate States of America
,” and was appointed to the command of a department, which extended from the mouth of the Arkansas River
, on each side of the Mississippi
as far as the northern boundary of the
He made his Headquarters at Memphis, in Tennessee
; and, in his first general order
, issued on the 13th of July, he showed great bitterness of feeling.
He declared that the “invasion
of the South
by the Federal
armies comes bringing with it a contempt for constitutional liberty, and the withering influence of the infidelity of New England
's first movement against Jackson
was to send
the Second Missouri Regiment of Volunteers, under Colonel
(afterward General) Franz Sigel
, to occupy and protect from injury the Pacific Railway, from St. Louis
to the Gasconade River
, preparatory to an advance toward the southern portion of the State
, by way of Rolla
, to oppose an invasion by Ben McCullough
, the Texas Ranger,7
who had crossed the border from Arkansas
with about eight hundred men, and was marching, with rapidly increasing numbers, on Springfield
On the following day, Lyon
left St. Louis
in two river steamers (Iatan
and J. C. Swan
), with about two thousand men well supplied for a long march, their immediate destination being the capital of the Commonwealth
, on the Missouri River
, and their first business to drive Jackson
, with their
followers, out of it. These troops were composed of Missouri
volunteers, under Colonels Blair
; regulars, under Captain Lathrop
; and artillery, under Captain James Totten
The expedition reached the capital on the afternoon of the 15th.
, with their armed followers, had fled westward by way of the railroad, destroying the bridges behind them, and, turning northward, took post a few miles below Booneville
, on the Missouri
, forty miles from Jefferson City
followed them the next day,
leaving Colonel Boernstein
, with three companies of his regiment, to hold the capital.
Contrary to the expectation of the insurgents, Lyon
went by water, in three steamers (A. McDonnell, Iatan
, and City of Louisiana
), and the destruction of bridges availed the insurgents nothing.
, at dawn on the 17th, Lyon
ascertained that the insurgents were encamped a few miles below Booneville
Pressing into his service a ferry-boat there, he pushed forward a short distance, when he discovered a battery on a bluff, and scouts hastening to report his approach.
He at once disembarked
on low ground, on the south side of the river, formed in column, sent forward his skirmishers, and soon found his foes.
They were encamped on the high ground, and were under the command of Colonel J. S. Marmaduke
, of the State
forces, General Price
having gone on in a boat to Lexington
, on account of alleged illness.
On the near approach of Lyon
, the frightened Governor had ordered that no resistance should be made; but the braver Marmaduke
, feeling strongly posted, had resolved to fight.
A troop of his cavalry and a battalion of infantry occupied the road.
Some of his troops had made a citadel of a strong brick house on
his left; and in a lane in his rear, leading to the river, was the main body of his left wing.
His main right wing was posted behind a fence, between a wheat and corn field, and in these fields were detached and unorganized squads of men.8
led his troops up a gently rolling slope for half a mile, and when within three hundred yards of his foe, he made dispositions for battle.
He posted the regulars, with Colonel Blair
's troops, on the left, and some German volunteers of Boernstein
's regiment, under Lieutenant-Colonel Shaeffer
, on the right.
's artillery occupied the center, and they opened the conflict by firing a shell from a 12-pounder in the midst of the insurgents in the road.
Another shell immediately followed, and scattered the men in the wheat-field, when Lyon
's column advanced, and the battle began.
It continued for a short time with great spirit on both sides.
The insurgents were forced back by the pressure of the Union
infantry, and the round shot, and shell, and grape, and canister, from Totten
Two of his shells entered the brick house and drove out the inmates; and twenty minutes later, Lyon
's men occupied it, and had full possession of the battle-field.
The insurgents made a stand at the edge of a wood near their camp, but were soon driven from their rallying-point.
They now fled in confusion, for they found themselves attacked on their flank by a cannonade from the river.
, with some infantry, and a small company of artillery, under Captain Voester
, who had been left in charge of the transports, had moved up the river and captured a shore-battery of two guns, with which the insurgents intended to sink the vessels of their pursuers.
They also took twenty prisoners, several horses, and a considerable amount of military stores.
They then moved forward to — co-operate with the land force; and it was the shot from a howitzer on the City of Louisiana
, and the missiles from Totten
's guns, falling simultaneously among the insurgents, that produced a panic and a flight.
Their camp, which Lyon
took possession of immediately afterward, showed evidences of hasty departure.9
Leaving a company to hold the camp, Lyon
pressed on to Booneville
, where the loyal inhabitants received him with joy, and the town was formally surrendered to him. The insurgents had continued their flight.
Some of them went directly southward, but a large portion of them, including most of the cavalry, fled westward toward Lexington
, whither, as we have observed, General Price
The Governor, who had kept at a safe distance from the battle, fled, with about five hundred men, to Warsaw
, on the Osage River
, eighty miles southwest of Booneville
, pursued some distance by Totten
There he was joined, on the 20th,
by about four hundred insurgents, under Colonel O'Kane
, who, before dawn on the 19th, had surprised, dispersed, and partially captured about the same number of Home Guards, under Captain Cook
, who were asleep in two barns, fifteen miles north of Warsaw
, at a place of rendezvous called Camp Cole.
and his followers continued their retreat fifty miles farther southwest, to Montevallo, in Vernon County
, on the extreme western borders of Missouri
, where he was joined by General Price
with troops gathered at Lexington
and on the way, making the whole force there about three thousand.
At the same time, General G. J. Rains
, a graduate of the Military Academy at West Point
, was hurrying forward to join Jackson
with a considerable force of insurgents, closely pursued by Major Sturgis
, of the regular Army, who was leading a body of Kansas
volunteers, who were eager to be avenged on Jackson
for sufferings which they alleged he had caused them a few years before, when they were struggling with invaders from Missouri
, called “Border Ruffians,” of whom the now fugitive Governor was a conspicuous leader.
Satisfied that the northern part of the State
was lost to the cause of Secession, for the time,
now endeavored to concentrate all of the disloyal Missouri
troops, with McCullough
's men, in the southwestern part of the Commonwealth
, preparatory to the speedy “deliverance of the State
from Federal rule.”
In the camp of the insurgents, near Booneville
found ample evidence of the hypocrisy of Jackson
, who had proclaimed to the world that they earnestly desired peace and reconciliation, but that it was denied them by the National Government
and its servants, while, at the same time, they were preparing to wage a cruel and relentless war in favor of the rebellion.
To counteract the effect of the false allegations of the Governor
in his proclamation,10 Lyon
issued an address, at Booneville
to the inhabitants of Missouri
, plainly stating the intentions of the Government
to be nothing more than the maintenance of its authority, and the preservation of the life of the Republic
On the day
before, Colonel Boernstein
, who was holding the capital to obedience with a mild but firm hand, had issued a proclamation, addressed to the inhabit.
ants of that immediate region, assuring them of protection in the enjoyment of all their rights, and that “slave property” should not be interfered with, nor the slaves encouraged to be unfaithful; at the same time warning all disloyal men that he would not allow the enemies of the Government
to work mischief openly.
These proclamations quieted the fears of the people, and strengthened the cause of the Government
Assured of military protection, and encouraged by the aspect of affairs favorable to the maintenance of the National
authority in the Commonwealth
, the State Convention was called to reassemble at Jefferson City
on the 22d of July.
remained at Booneville
about a fortnight, making preparations for a vigorous campaign against gathering insurgents in the southwestern part of the State
He now held military control over the whole region northward of the Missouri River
, and east of a line running south from Booneville
to the Arkansas
border, thus giving to the Government
the control of the important points of St. Louis
, St. Joseph
, and Bird's Point
, as bases of operations, with railways and rivers for transportation.
On the 1st of July there were at least ten thousand loyal troops in Missouri
, and ten thousand more might be thrown into it, in the space of forty-eight hours, from camps in the adjoining State of Illinois
And, at the same time, Colonel Sigel
, already mentioned, an energetic and accomplished German liberal, who had commanded the republican troops of his native state (the Grand Duchy
) in the revolution of 1848, was pushing forward with eager soldiers toward the insurgent camps on the borders of Kansas
, to open the campaign, in which he won laurels and the commission of a brigadier.
That campaign, in which Lyon
lost his life, will be considered hereafter.
There was now great commotion all over the land.
War had begun in earnest.
The drum and fife were heard in every city, village, and hamlet, from the St. Croix
to the Rio Grande
Propositions for compromises
and concessions were no longer listened to by the opposing parties.
The soothing echoes of the last “Peace Convention,” held at Frankfort, in Kentucky
, on the 27th of May,11
were lost in the din of warlike preparations; and it was evident that the great question before the people could only be settled by the arbitrament of the sword, to which the enemies of the Republic
As we look over the theater of events connected with the secession movement at the beginning of July, 1861, we perceive that the Insurrection had then become an organized Rebellion, and was rapidly assuming the dignity and importance of a Civil War. The conspirators had formed a confederacy,
civil and military, vast in the extent of its area of operations, strong in the number of its willing and unwilling supporters, and marvelous in its manifestations of energy hitherto unsuspected.
It had all the visible forms of regular government, modeled after that against which the conspirators had revolted; and through it they were wielding a power equal to that of many empires of the globe.
They had been accorded belligerent rights, as a nation struggling for its independence, by leading governments of Europe
, and under the sanction of that recognition they had commissioned embassadors to foreign courts, and sent out upon the ocean armed ships, bearing their chosen ensign, to commit piracy, as legalized by the law of nations.
They had created great armies, and were successfully defying the power of their Government to suppress their revolt.
Henceforth, in this chronicle, the conflict will be treated as a civil war, and the opposing parties be designated respectively by the titles of Nationals
We have already noticed the meeting of the Confederate Congress, so-called, in second session, at Montgomery
, on the 29th of April,
and the authorization thereby of the issuing of commissions for privateering; also for making thorough preparations for war on the land.12
That “Congress” worked diligently for the accomplishment of its purposes.
It passed an unlimited Enlistment Act
, it being estimated that arms for one hundred and fifty thousand men could be furnished by the Confederacy
That Act authorized Jefferson Davis
to “accept the services of volunteers who may offer their services, without regard to the place of enlistment, either as cavalry, mounted riflemen, artillery, or infantry, in such proportion of their several arms as he may deem expedient, to serve for and during the existing war, unless sooner discharged.”
Acts were passed for the regulation of telegraphs, postal affairs, and the mints;14
and on the 16th of May an Act was approved authorizing the issuing of bonds for fifty millions of dollars, at an annual interest not to exceed eight per cent., and payable in twenty years. Made wiser by their failure to find a market for their bonds authorized in February,15
and offered in April, the conspirators now devised schemes to insure the sale of this new issue, or to secure money by other means.
The Act gave the Secretary of the Treasury
, so-called, discretionary power to issue in lieu of such bonds twenty millions of dollars in treasury notes, not bearing interest, in denominations of not less than five dollars, and “to be receivable in payment of all debts or taxes due to the Confederate States
, except the export duty on cotton, or in exchange for the bonds herein authorized to be issued.
The said notes,” said the Act, “shall be payable at the end of two years from the date of their issue, in specie.”
Another scheme for raising money, in connection with the issue of bonds, is found in an act approved on the 21st of May, which forbade the debtors to individuals or corporations in the Free-labor States from making payments of the same “to their respective creditors, or their agents or assignees, pending the existing war.”
Such debtors were authorized by the act to pay the amount
Con<*>Ederate Treasury note|
of their indebtedness “into the treasury of the Confederate States
, in specie or treasury notes,” and receive for the same the treasurer's certificate, which should show the amount paid in, and on what account, and the rate of interest to be allowed.
These were to be “redeemable at the close of the war and the restoration of peace, in specie or its equivalent.”
It was estimated that the aggregate of the indebtedness of the business men within the lines of the so-called Confederate States
to those of the Free-labor States, at that time, was about two hundred millions of dollars.
All honorable debtors gave no countenance to the proposed scheme of villainy, and not only refrained from reporting their indebtedness and paying the amount into the treasury of the conspirators, but took every favorable opportunity to liquidate the claims of Northern creditors.
There was a large class who favored secession because by its means they hoped to avoid paying their debts.
These, too, kept away from the Secretary of the Treasury
; and this notable scheme gave the craving coffers of the conspirators very little relief.
Still another scheme for insuring the sale of the bonds was planned.
To recommend them to the confidence of the people, it was necessary for them to have some tangible basis for practical purposes, in the absence of specie.
The conspirators could not calculate upon a revenue from commerce, for the blockading ships of the Government
were rapidly closing the seaports of States in which rebellion existed to regular trade.
It was therefore proposed to make the great staple of the Confederacy
— cotton — the main basis for the credit of the bonds, with other agricultural products in a less degree.
The blockade was, of necessity, diminishing the commercial value of the surplus of these products, for, without an outlet to the markets of the world, they were useless.
The experiment was tried; and while the conspirators realized very little money, almost every thing required for the consumption of their armies, for a while, was supplied.
The plan was, that the planters should subscribe for the use of the government a certain sum of money out of the proceeds of a certain number of bales of cotton, when sold, the planter being allowed to retain the custody of his cotton, and the right to choose his time for its sale.
When sold, he received the amount of his subscription in the bonds of the Confederacy
The people had little confidence in these bonds, but were willing to invest in them the surplus of their productions, which they could not sell; and it was announced by the so-called Secretary of the Treasury
of the Confederates
, when the “Congress” reassembled at Richmond
, late in July, that subscriptions to the Cotton Loan
amounted to over fifty millions of dollars.19
Bonds, with cotton
as a basis of promises of redemption, to the amount of fifteen millions of dollars, were disposed of in Europe
, chiefly in England
We shall hereafter further consider this Cotton Loan.
In retaliation for an order issued by Mr. Chase
, the Secretary of the Treasury
, on the 2d of May, directing all officers in the revenue service, on the Northern
and Northwestern waters of the United States
, to seize and detain all arms, munitions of war, provisions, and other supplies, on their way toward States in which rebellion existed — in other words, establishing a blockade of the Mississippi
and the railways leading southward from Kentucky
forbade the exportation of raw cotton or cotton yarn
, “excepting through” seaports of the Confederate States
, under heavy penalties, expecting thereby to strike a heavy blow at manufactures in the Free-labor States.20
By an order of John H. Reagan
, the so-called Postmaster-General
of the Confederates
, caused by an order of Postmaster-General Blair
for the arrest of the United States
postal service in States wherein rebellion existed, after the 31st of May, the postmasters in those States were ordered to retain in their possession, after the 1st of June, “for the benefit of the Confederate States
, all mail-bags, locks and keys, marking and other stamps,” and “all property connected with the postal service.”
The Confederate Congress adjourned on the 21st of May, to reassemble at Richmond
on the 20th of July following,21
after providing for the removal thither of the several Executive Departments and their archives, and authorizing Davis
, if it “should be impolitic to meet in Richmond
” at that time, to call it together elsewhere.
He was also authorized to proclaim a Fast Day, which he did on the 25th, appointing as such the 13th of June.
In that proclamation he said: “Knowing that none but a just and righteous cause can gain the Divine favor, we would implore the Lord
of Hosts to guide and direct our policy in the paths of right, duty, justice, and mercy; to unite our hearts and our efforts for the defense of our dearest rights; to strengthen our weakness, crown our arms with success, and enable us to secure a speedy, just, and honorable peace.”
On Sunday, the 26th, Davis
, with the intention, it is said, of taking command of the Confederate
troops in Virginia
accompanied by his favorite aid, Wigfall
, of Texas
and Robert Toombs
, his “Secretary of State
His journey was a continuous ovation.
At every railway station, men, women, and children greeted him with cheers and the waving of handkerchiefs.
“When the flute-like voice of Davis
,” said a reporter of the Richmond
, who had been sent to chronicle the journey, “arose upon the air, hushed to silence by the profound respect of his auditors, it was not long before there was an outburst of feeling which gave vent to a tornado of voices.
Every sentiment he uttered seemed to well up from his heart, and was received with the wildest enthusiasm.”
The modesty of Wigfall
on the occasion was most remarkable.
“In vain,” says the chronicler, “he would seek some remote part of the cars; the crowd hunted him up, and the welkin rang with rejoicings, as he addressed them in his emphatic and fervent style of oratory.”
was likewise modest.
“He, too,” said the chronicler, “sought to avoid the call, but the echo would ring with the name of Toombs
! and the sturdy Georgia
statesman had to respond.”
At Goldsboroa, in North Carolina
was received at the cars by the military (a part of which were some of the mounted riflemen of that State, then on their way to Virginia
), who escorted him to the hotel, where he supped.
“The hall,” says the chronicler, “was thronged with beautiful girls, and many were decking him with gar. lands of flowers, while others fanned him. It was a most interesting occasion.”
After declaring that the confidence of the people showed “that the mantle of Washington
” fell “gracefully upon.
the shoulders” of the arch-conspirator, the historian of the journey said: “Never were a people more enraptured with their chief magistrate than ours are with President Davis
, and the trip from Montgomery
will ever be remembered with delight by all who witnessed it.”
North Carolina mounted Rifleman. |
and his party were met at Petersburg
by Governor Letcher
and the Mayor
) of Richmond
; and he was escorted into his future “capital” by soldiers and civilians, and out to the “Fair grounds,” where he addressed a great crowd of people,
and declared that, to the last breath of his life, he was wholly their own. On the evening of the 31st he was serenaded, when he took the occasion to utter that memorable speech, so characteristic of the orator whenever he was impressed with a sense of power in his own hands, which gave the people of the Free-labor States an indication of the spirit that animated the conspirators, and with which the opening war would be waged.
He said that upon the Confederates
was laid the “high and holy responsibility of preserving the constitutional liberty of a free government.”
“Those with whom we have lately associated,” he said, “have shown themselves so incapable of appreciating the blessings of the glorious institutions they inherited, that they are to-day stripped of the liberty to which they were born.
They have allowed an ignorant usurper to trample upon all the prerogatives of citizenship, and to exercise powers never delegated to him; and it has
been reserved to your State, so lately one of the original thirteen, but now, thank God!
fully separated from them, to become the theater of a great central camp, from which will pour forth thousands of brave hearts, to roll back the tide of this despotism.
Apart from that gratification we may well feel at being separated from such a connection, is the pride that upon you devolves the task of maintaining and defending our new government.
I believe that we shall be able to achieve this noble work, and that the institutions of our fathers will go to our children as safely as they have descended to us. In these Confederate States
, we observe those relations which have been poetically ascribed to the United States
, but which never there had the same reality--States so distinct that each existed as a sovereign, yet so united that each was bound with the other to constitute a whole--‘ Distinct as the billows, yet one as the sea.’
Upon every hill which now overlooks Richmond
you have had, and will continue to have, camps containing soldiers from every State in the Confederacy
; and to its remotest limits
every proud heart beats high with indignation at the thought that the foot of the invader has been set upon the soil of Old Virginia.
There is not one true son of the South
who is not ready to shoulder his musket, to bleed, to die, or to conquer in the cause of liberty here. . . . We have now reached the point where, arguments being exhausted, it only remains for us to stand by our weapons.
When the time and occasion serve, we shall smite the smiter with manly arms, as did our fathers before us, and as becomes their.
sons. To the enemy we leave the base acts of the assassin and incendiary.25
To them we leave it to insult helpless women; to us belongs vengeance upon man.”
He had ceased speaking, and was about to retire, when a voice in the crowd shouted: “Tell us something about Buena Vista
,” when he turned and said: “Well, my friends, I can only say we will make the battle-fields in Virginia
another Buena Vista
, and drench them with blood more precious than that which flowed there.”
The Virginians were so insane with passion at that time, that instead of rebuking Davis
for virtually reiterating the assurance given to the people of the more Southern States, “You may plant your seed in peace, for Old Virginia will have to bear the brunt of battle,” 26
they rejoiced because upon every hill around their State capital were camps of “soldiers from every State in
;” and the citizens of that capital purchased from James A. Seddon
(afterward Confederate “Secretary of War
” ) his elegant mansion, on the corner of Clay and Twelfth Streets, and presented it, sumptuously furnished, to the “President
” for a residence.27
In successful imitation of his chief, Beauregard
, who arrived at Richmond
on the 1st of June,
and proceeded to take command of the Confederate
troops in the “Department of Alexandria,” issued a proclamation from “Camp Pickens, Manassas Junction
,” to the inhabitants of that region of Virginia
, which has forever linked his name with those of the dishonorable men of his race.28
The obvious intention of Davis
, and the authors of scores upon scores of speeches at political gatherings, from pulpits, and to soldiers on their departure for the seat of war, poured forth continually at that time in all parts of the Confederacy
, was, by the most reckless disregard of truth, and the employment of the most incendiary language, to “fire the Southern
heart,” and make the people and the soldiers believe that they were called upon to resist a horde of cut-throats and plunderers, let loose by an ignorant usurper, for the sole object of despoiling the Slave-labor States.
Every thing that malignity could imagine and language could express, calculated to cast discredit upon the National Government
, abase the President
in the opinions of the Southern
people, and make them hate and despise their political brethren in the Free-labor States,
was, as we have already observed, continually thrust upon the notice of that people through the most respectable as well as the most disreputable of their public speakers and journals.
The Richmond papers, published under the inspiration of Davis
and his fellow-conspirators, were especially offensive.
Sufficient has been cited from these journals, and others in the Slave-labor States, to show how horribly the minds of the people were abused; and yet what we have given is mild in sentiment and decent in expression compared with much that filled the newspapers of the Confederacy
and was heard from the lips of leaders.
The speech of Davis
and the proclamation of Beauregard
were applauded by the secession leaders in Washington City
and in Baltimore
, as exhibiting the ring of true metal, and gave a new impulse to their desires for linking the fortunes of Maryland
with the Confederacy
, and renewed their hopes of a speedy consummation of their wishes.
The temporary panic that seized them when Butler
so suddenly took military possession of Baltimore
had quickly subsided after he was called away; and under the mild administration of martial law by General Cadwalader
, his successor, they became daily more bold and defiant, and gave much uneasiness to the Government
It was known that the majority of the members of the Maryland Legislature were disloyal, and that secretly and openly they were doing all they could to array their State against the National Government
A committee of that body29
had addressed a sympathizing epistle to Jefferson Davis
, in which he was unwarrantably assured that the people of Maryland
coincided with the conspirators in sentiment; for at the elections for members of Congress,
to represent the State
in the extraordinary session to begin on the 4th of July, so loyal was the great mass of the people of that State, that not a single sympathizer with secession was chosen.
In the city of Baltimore
was the head of the secession movements in the State
; and it was made apparent to the Government
; early in June,
that there was a powerful combination there whose purpose was to co-operate with the armed insurgents in Virginia
in attempts to seize the National Capital
, by preventing soldiers from the North
passing through that city, and by arming men to cross into Virginia
to swell the ranks of the insurgents there.
The Government took energetic steps to avert the threatened danger.
N. P. Banks
, who had lately been appointed a Major-General
of Volunteers, was assigned to the command of the Department of Annapolis, with his Headquarters at Baltimore
; and on the 10th of June he succeeded Cadwalader
, who joined the expedition under General Patterson
It soon became so evident to Banks
that the Board of Police, and Kane
of that body, were in active sympathy, if not in actual complicity, with the conspirators, that he reported to his Government his suspicions of the dangerous character of that organization, suspicions which subsequent events showed to be well founded.
After satisfying himself of the guilt of certain officials, General Banks
ordered a large body of soldiers, armed and supplied with ball-cartridges, to march from Fort McHenry
into the city just before daybreak on the 27th
of June, and to proceed to the arrest of Marshal Kane
, and his incarceration in that fort.
He at once gave to the people, in a proclamation, his reasons for the act. He told them it was not his intention to interfere in the least with the legitimate government of the citizens of Baltimore
or of the State
; on the contrary, it was his desire to “support the public authorities in all appropriate duties.
But unlawful combinations of men,” he continued, organized for resistance to such laws, that provide hidden deposits of arms and ammunition, encourage contraband traffic with men at war with the Government
, and, while enjoying its protection and privileges, stealthily wait an opportunity to combine their means and force with those in rebellion against its authority, are not among the recognized or legal rights of any class of men, and cannot be permitted under any form of government whatever.
“He said that such combinations were well known to exist in his department, and that the Chief of Police
was not only believed to be cognizant of those facts, , but, in contravention of his duty and in violation of law,” was, “by direction or indirection, both witness and protector to the transaction and parties engaged therein.”
Under such circumstances, the Government
could not “regard him otherwise than as the head of an armed force hostile to its authority, and acting in concert with its avowed enemies.”
He further proclaimed that, in accordance with instructions, he had appointed Colonel
) John R. Kenly
, of the First Maryland Volunteers, provost-marshal
in and for the city of Baltimore
, “to superintend and cause to be executed the police laws” of the city, “with the aid and assistance of the subordinate officers of the police department.”
He assured the citizens that whenever a loyal man among them should be named for the performance of the duty of chief of police, the military would at once yield to the civil authority.
was well known and highly respected as an influential citizen and thorough loyalist; and he entered upon the important duties of his office with promptness and energy.
The Police Commissioners32
had met as.
First Maryland Regiment. |
soon as Banks
's proclamation appeared, and protested against his act as illegal, and declared that the “suspension of their functions suspended at the same time the operations of the police laws,” and put the subordinate officers and men off duty.
This declaration filled the citizens with the liveliest excitement, caused by indignation and alarm.
They felt that they were given over to the power of the worst elements of society, with no law to protect them.
hastened, by the publication
of instructions to Kenly
, to disabuse and quiet the public mind.
He therein declared that the functions of the police officers and men, and the operations of police
laws, were in full force, excepting so far as the latter affected the Commissioners
and the Chief of Police
; and he authorized Kenly
, in the event of a refusal of any of the police force to perform their duty, to select, in conjunction with such of the public authorities as would aid him, “good men and true,” to fill their places.
worked with energy.
He chose to select new men for a police force.
Before midnight, he had enrolled, organized, and armed such a force, two hundred and fifty strong, composed of Union citizens whom he could trust, and had taken possession of the Headquarters of the late Marshal
and Police Commissioners, in the Old City Hall, on Holliday Street. In that building he found ample evidence of the guiltiness of the late occupants.
Concealed beneath the floors, in several rooms,
were found a large number of arms, consisting of muskets, rifles, shot-guns, carbines, pistols, swords, and dirk knives, with ample ammunition of various kinds; also, in the covered yard or wood-room in the rear, in a position to command Watch-house Alley
, leading to Saratoga Street, were two 6-pound and two 4-pound iron cannon, with suitable cartridges and balls.
In that building was also found the cannon-ball sent from Charleston
to Marshal Kane
, delineated on page 322. These discoveries, and others of like character in other parts of the city, together with the rebellious conduct of the Board of Police, who continued their sittings daily, refused to acknowledge the new policemen, and held the old force subject to their orders, seemed to warrant the Government
in ordering their arrest.
They were accordingly taken into custody, and were confined in Fort Warren
, in Boston Harbor
, as prisoners of State.
These vigorous measures secured the ascendency of the Unionists in Maryland
, which they never afterward
It was thenceforward entitled to the honor of being a loyal State, and Baltimore
a loyal city.
The secessionists were silenced; and, at the suggestion of many Unionists
, ,July 10, George R. Dodge
, a citizen and a civilian, was appointed
marshal of police in place of Colonel Kenly
, who, with his regiment, soon afterward
joined the Army of the Potomac.
When the necessity for their presence no longer existed, Banks
withdrew his troops from the city, where they had been posted at the various public buildings and other places; and, late in July, he superseded General Patterson
in command on the Upper Potomac
, and his place in Baltimore
was filled by General John A. Dix
A few days later, Federal Hill
was occupied, as we have observed, by the Fifth New York regiment (Zouaves), under Colonel Duryee
(who was appointed a brigadier on the 31st of August), and by their hands the strong works known as Fort Federal Hill
The turn of affairs in Maryland
was disheartening to the conspirators.
They had counted largely upon the active co-operation of its citizens in the important military movements about to be made, when Johnston
should force his way across the Potomac
, and with their aid strike a deadly blow for the possession of the National Capital
in its rear.
These expectations had been strongly supported by refugees from their State who had made their way to Richmond
, and these, forming themselves into a corps called The Maryland Guard, had shown their faith by offering their services to the Confederacy
These enthusiastic young men, blinded by their own zeal, assured the conspirators that the sympathies of a greater portion of the people of their State were with them.
This was confirmed by the arrival of a costly “Confederate” banner for the corps, wrought by women of Baltimore
, and sent clandestinely to them by a sister secessionist.
This was publicly presented to the Guard
on Capitol Square, in front of the monument there erected in honor of Washington
and the founders of Virginia
.34 Ex-Senator Mason
made a speech on the occasion, in which the hopes of the conspirators concerning Maryland
were set forth.
“Your own honored State,” he said, “is with us heart and soul in this great controversy. . . . We all know that the same spirit which brought you here actuates thousands who remain at home.”
He complimented Chief Justice Taney
for his sympathies with the conspirators, as one (referring to his action in the case of Merryman35
) who had “stood bravely in the breach, and interposed the unspotted arm of Justice between the rights of the South
and the malignant usurpation of power by the North
In conclusion, after hinting at a contemplated Confederate invasion of Maryland
, in which the troops before him were expected to join,36
he told them they were to take the flag back to Baltimore
“It came here,” he said, “in the hands of the fair lady who stands by my side, who brought it through the camps of the enemy with a
woman's fortitude and courage and devotion to our cause; and you are to take it back to Baltimore
, unfurl it in your streets, and challenge the applause of your citizens.”
For more than three years the conspirators were deceived by the belief that Maryland
was their ally in heart, but was made powerless by military despotism; and her refugee sons were continually calling with faith, in the spirit of Randall
's popular lyric:--
burst the tyrant's chain,
Virginia should not call in vain,
She meets her sisters on the plain;
“Sic Semper,” 'tis the proud refrain
That baffles minions back again,
Arise in majesty again,
The delusion was dispelled when, in the summer of 1863, Lee
, with the expectation of receiving large accessions to his army in that State, but lost by desertion far more than he gained by recruiting.
At about this time, a piratical expedition was undertaken on Chesapeake Bay
, and successfully carried out by some Marylanders.
On the day after the arrest of Kane
the steamer St. Nicholas
, Captain Kirwan
, that plied between Baltimore
and Point Lookout
, at the mouth of the Potomac River
, left the former place with forty or fifty passengers, including about twenty men who passed for mechanics.
There were also a few women, and among them was one who professed to be a French lady.
When the steamer was near Point Lookout
, the next morning, this “French lady,” suddenly transformed to a stout young man, in the person of a son of a citizen of St. Mary's County, Maryland
, named Thomas
, and surrounded by the band of pretended mechanics, all well armed, demanded of Captain Kirwan
the immediate surrender of his vessel.
had no means for successful resistance, and yielded.
The boat was taken to the Virginia
side of the river, and the passengers were landed at Cone Point
, while the captain and crew were retained as prisoners.
There one hundred and fifty armed accomplices of the pirates, pursuant to an arrangement, went on board the St. Nicholas
, which was destined for the Confederate
She then went cruising down the Chesapeake
to the mouth of the Rappahannock River
, where she captured three brigs laden respectively with coffee, ice, and coal.
With her prizes, she went up the Rappahannock
, where the pirates sold their plunder, divided the prize-money, and were entertained at a public dinner by the delighted citizens of that town, then suffering from the blockade, when Thomas
appeared in his costume of a “French lady,” and produced great merriment.
A few days after this outrage, officers Carmichael38
, of Kenly
's Baltimore police force, were at Fair Haven
, on the Chesapeake
, with a culprit
They took passage for home in the steamer Mary Washington
, Captain Mason L. Weems
On board of her were Captain Kirwan
and his fellow-prisoners, who had been released; also Thomas
, the pirate, and some of his accomplices, who were preparing, no doubt, to repeat their bold and profitable achievement.
was informed of their-presence, and directed Weems
to land his passengers at Fort McHenry
perceived the destination of the vessel he remonstrated; and, finally, drawing his revolver, and calling around him his armed associates, he threatened to throw the officers overboard and seize the vessel.
He was overpowered by superior numbers, and word was sent to General Banks
of the state of the case, who ordered an officer with a squad of men to arrest the pirates.
could not be found.
At length he was discovered in a large bureau drawer, in the ladies' cabin.
He was drawn out, and, with his accomplices, was lodged in Fort McHenry
Piratical operations on a more extended scale and wider field, under the sanction of commissions from the conspirators at Montgomery
, were now frightening American commerce from the ocean.
We have already mentioned the issuing of these commissions by Jefferson Davis
the efforts of the conspirators to establish a navy, and the fitting out of vessels for the purpose, which had been stolen from the National Government
, or purchased.
Among the latter, as we have observed, was the Lady Davis
, the first regularly commissioned vessel in the Confederate Navy.
When the National Congress met in extraordinary session, on the 4th of July, more than twenty of these ocean depredators were afloat and in active service;40
and at the close of that month, they had captured vessels and property valued at several millions of dollars.
Their operations had commenced early in May, and at the beginning of June no less than twenty vessels had been captured and sent as prizes into the port of New Orleans alone.
The most notable of the Confederate
pirate vessels, at that early period of the war, were the Savannah
, Captain T. H. Baker
, of Charleston
, and the Petrel
, Captain William Perry
, of South Carolina
; one of which was captured by an armed Government vessel, and the other was destroyed by one.
was a little schooner which had formerly done duty as
pilot-boat No. 7, off Charleston harbor
She was only fifty-four tons burden, carried one 18-pounder amidships, and was manned by only twenty men. At the close of May she sallied out from Charleston
, and, on the 1st of June, captured the merchant brig Joseph
, of Maine
, laden with sugar, from Cuba
, which was sen t into Georgetown, South Carolina
, and the Savannah
proceeded in search of other prizes.
Three days afterward,
she fell in with the National brig Perry
, which she mistook for a merchant vessel, and approached to make her a prize.
When the mistake was discovered, the Savannah
turned and tried to escape.
The Savannah. |
hot pursuit, and a sharp fight ensued, which was of short duration.
surrendered; and her crew, with the papers of the vessel, were transferred to the war-ship Minnesota
, the flag-ship of the Atlantic Blockading Squadron, and the prize was sent to New York in charge of Master
's Mate McCook
She was the first vessel bearing the Confederate
flag that was captured, and the event produced much gratification among the loyal people.
The captain and crew of the Savannah
were imprisoned as pirates, and were afterward tried
as such, in New York, under the proclamation of the President
of the 19th of April.41
In the mean time, Jefferson Davis
had addressed a letter
to the President
, in which he threatened to deal with prisoners in his hands precisely as the commander and crew of the Savannah
should be dealt with.
He prepared to carry out that threat by holding Colonel Michael Corcoran
, of the Sixty-ninth New York (Irish) Regiment, who was captured near Bull's Run
, and others, as hostages, to suffer death if that penalty should be inflicted on the prisoners of the Savannah
Meanwhile the subject had been much discussed at home,43
and commanded attention abroad, especially
, where it was assumed that Davis
was at the head of an actual government, to whom the British
authorities had officially awarded belligerent rights.
With that assumption, and that opinion of the character of the Confederates
, it was argued in the British Parliament that the captives were not pirates, but privateers, and ought to be treated as prisoners of war. The United States Government, on the, contrary, denied that Jefferson Davis
represented any government, and hence his commissions were null, and the so-called privateers were pirates, according to the accepted law of nations; but, governed by the dictates of expediency and a wisely directed humanity, it was concluded to treat them as prisoners of war, and they were afterward exchanged.
was more suddenly checked in her piratical career than the Savannah
. She was the United States
, which had been surrendered to the insurgents at Charleston
, in December, 1860, by her disloyal commander.44
She was now manned by a crew of thirty-six men, who were mostly Irishmen, picked up in Charleston
while seeking employment.
She evaded the blockading squadron off Charleston harbor
, and went to sea on the 28th of July, when she was discovered by the National
frigate St. Lawrence
, that was lying behind one of the islands on that coast.
The St. Lawrence
was immediately made to assume the appearance of a large merchant vessel.
Her heavy spars were hauled down, her ports were closed, and her people sent below.
regarded her as a rich prize, and bore down upon her, while the St. Lawrence
appeared to be crowding sail so as to escape.
As the Petrel
approached, she sent a warning shot across the St. Lawrence
, but the latter kept on her course, chased by the pirate.
When the Petrel
came within fair range, the St. Lawrence
opened her ports, and gave her the contents of three heavy guns.
One of them — a Paixhan — was loaded with an 8-inch shell, known as the “Thunderbolt,” 45
which exploded in the hold of the Petrel
, while a 32-pound solid shot struck her amidships, below water-mark.
These made her a total wreck in an instant, and she went to the bottom of the ocean, leaving the foaming waters over her grave thickly strewn with splinters and her struggling crew.
Four of her men were drowned, and the remainder, when brought out of the water, were so amazed and
Thunderbolt shell. |
confused that they scarcely knew what had happened.
A flash of fire, a thunder-peal, the crash of timbers, and engulfment in the sea, had been the incidents of a moment of their experience.
The rescued crew were sent to Philadelphia
and placed in Moyamensing Prison, to answer the charge of piracy.
They, like the crew of the Savannah
, were finally admitted to the privileges of prisoners of war, and were exchanged.
While the piratical vessels of the Confederates
were making war upon
commerce, and. the conspirators were encouraged by foreign powers, who had conceded to them belligerent rights, to increase their number, Secretary Welles
was putting forth, in full measure, all the instrumentalities at his command for increasing the strength and efficiency of the National Navy
The blockade of ports along almost three thousand miles of coast, with its numerous harbors and inlets,46
had been declared, and must be made as perfect as the law of nations, as they were then construed, required, to command respect.
There was no time for the building of vessels for the purpose; so the Secretary
purchased various kinds of craft, and converted them into warriors as speedily as possible.
We have seen how inefficient and scattered was the Navy at the accession of the new Administration, at the beginning of March ;
now, at the beginning of July, four months later, there were forty-three armed vessels engaged in the blockade service, and in defense of the coast on the eastern side of the continent.
were divided into two squadrons, known respectively as the Atlantic
and the Gulf Squadron.
The former, under the command of Flag-officer Silas H. Stringham
, consisted of twenty-two vessels, and an aggregate of two hundred and ninety-six guns and three thousand three hundred men; the latter, under command of Flag-officer William Mervine
, consisted of twenty-one vessels, with an aggregate of two hundred and eighty-two guns and three thousand five hundred men.47
And before the close of the year, the Secretary
Stevens's iron-clad Floating Battery. |
purchased and put into commission no less than one hundred and thirty-seven vessels, and had contracted for the building of a large number of steamships of a substantial class, suitable for performing continuous duty off the coast in all weathers.
, in his Report, called attention to the important subject of
iron-clad vessels, and recommended the appointment of a competent board to inquire into and report on the subject.
Already there had been spent more than a million of dollars in the construction of an immense iron-clad floating battery, for harbor defense, by Messrs. Stevens
, of Hoboken, New Jersey
, most of it by the Government
, and yet it was not completed.
He recommended a special inquiry concerning that battery, before the large sum asked for its completion should be appropriated.48
The call for recruits for the Navy was promptly complied with, and for the want of them no vessel was ever detained more than two or three days. Since the 4th of March, two hundred and fifty-nine officers had resigned their commissions or had been dismissed from the service for disloyalty; and several vessels were sent to sea at first without a full complement of officers.
The want was soon supplied.
Many who had retired to civil pursuits now patriotically came forth promptly to aid their country in its struggle for life, and were re-commissioned ;49
while many masters and masters' mates were appointed from the commercial marine.50
The Naval School and public property at Annapolis, in Maryland
, had been removed to Newport, Rhode Island
, because it was unsafe, in the state of public affairs in Maryland
, to continue the school there.
, near Newport
, was tendered by the War Department for the temporary accommodation of the school.