The following biography of the officially defunct ‘"commander of the Western department, "’ is from the Nashville Banner
, of the 14th.
We hold it altogether too clever a thing, in its way, to withhold from our readers:
In our issue of yesterday morning we published the melancholy intelligence that Maj. Gen. John C. Fremont
, commanding General
of the Western Division of the United States army, is no more.
He died from a blow inflicted by a dispatch from Washington
, at his camp near Springfield, Mo.
, some ten or twelve days since.
His remains, of which there were very few, were removed to St. Louis
by himself, for interment in the bosom of his family.
For a man who still breathes, John C. Fremont
is very dead.
For a man to whom all hopes of salvation are not absolutely lost, he is very essentially dainned.
Considering all the disadvantages under which he labored, he was a valuable friend to the South
, for if he has recently done nothing directly for the advancement of our cause, he would seem to have left nothing undone for the damage of his own. We may never get the money of which he plundered his Government; but we can safely believe that it will never be used against us. His connection with the army in Missouri
, as commanding General, was a great element of weakness, and its discontinuance is to be regretted.
His untimely removal was a heavy reinforcement of the Federal
As he has filled during the last few months a large space in the public eye with his military movements, and a large pocket with the funds of the Federal Government
, we have thought that a brief sketch of his life would not prove wholly uninteresting to the general reader.
We would be pleased to pay this tribute of respect to each and all of the Northern Generals
as they are stricken down by the hands that created them, but they disappear so rapidly that the thing is impossible, unless we double our corps of editors, which we can't afford to do.
John C. Fremont
, the C in whose name usually stands for Charles, was born, at a very early age, in the city of Savannah, Ga.
, a distinction of which the city of Savannah, Ga.
, is at present not particularly proud.
If, in retiring to the shades of private life, he shall not seek them at the bottom of the nearest millpond, and should escape the chances of being hanged until the 21st of January, 1862, he will on that day be forty-nine years old. Just twelve months afterward he will be fifty.
His parents of whom he had two, all other statements to the contrary notwithstanding, were not both Frenchmen, as some suppose, but his father was very much so.--The maiden name of the latter has never been satisfactorily ascertained, though it is presumed to have been Fremont
That of his mother was Whiting
She was a very rich young lady, who, at the age of seventeen, and some years previous to the first appearance of John Charles
on any stage, married, under a sort of protest, a certain, or rather, we should say, a very uncertain, Major Pryor
, an active and interesting youth of sixty- two. Twelve years subsequently the matrimonial firm of Mr.Pryor
and Mrs. Pryor
was dissolved by special act of the Georgia Legislature, when the former married his housekeeper, (the result no doubt of a Pryor engagement,) and the latter followed his example by marrying Monsieur Fremont
, who had been engaged in teaching the young idea of Norfolk, Va.
, how to shoot French
.--The consequence was, three additional Fremonts, of whom John Charles
was unfortunately one.
Being a great sponge, he absorbed the notoriety of the whole family, and the rest of them have never been heard of since.
Having in due time got to be a man, John Charles
knocked about the world for some years with the United States navy; to which fact has unjustly been attributed all the knavery of which he has since been guilty.
He then spent a long time in surveying railroads in Georgia
, North Carolina
, and East Tennessee
, most of which were never built, and are not likely to be during the present war. Subsequently he became, and still is, a great friend to underground railroads, and recently, projected a very extensive one in Missouri
, but was denied a charter and the right of way by the Federal President
on account of the heavy expense the Government
would have to incur in feeding the passengers.
next turns up as an explorer of new routes through the Rocky Mountains
, to the shores of the Pacific
, in which business he acquired the name of the Pathfinder
He is the author of the fine topographical work known as the ‘"Hidden Path."’ His adventures among the mountains were very numerous, and some of them remarkable.
At one time he was lost in a snow drift, nine hundred feet deep, and covered an area of several thousand square miles at the bottom of which he remained for some eighteen months, when he was accidentally discovered and rescued by a small party of hunters, while scraping away the snow in search of game.
When found, he complained of being a little numb about the toes, having eaten his boots six or eight months before, but was otherwise comfortable and well.
At another time, while lost among the defiles of the mountains, he subsisted for nearly two years on the bill of laden of a cargo of pickled beef he had formerly shipped from the Pacific
to a firm in New York.
These are among his minor adventures.
We could relate hundreds of others, but forbear, as they might seem incredible to some of our readers.
was at one time elected Governor of California
by the settlers out there, who were not very well acquainted with him. Some other stranger also appointed him lieutenant-colonel in the United States Army.
This was in 1846.
The following year the Mexican
war having broken out, he was promoted a step lower, and made a major of volunteers.
The ending of the war has never been attributed to him. In 1847 Commodore Stockton
and Gen. Kearny
got to quarreling in California
as to which of them should play the first fiddle in the government of the country.
John haries took sides with the former, but the latter got the best of the row in the end, and at once ordered John Charles
, to be tried for mutiny, disobedience of orders, &c. The result was he was sentenced to be dismissed the service.
The President approved the verdict, all but that part touching mutiny, and then remitted the sentence — which was a pity.
, however, resigned in disgust, and went in search of some more adventures among the mountains.
Being a citizen of California
, he was elected to represent that State in the United States Senate, when it was admitted into the Union
in 1850; but he had the ill luck to draw the straw which represented the short term, and he held his seat but a few months, being actually but three weeks in the Senate.
His per diem did not amount to much, but he did not complain of the mileage.
He after wards ran for President
, but the result did not then seem encouraging.
John Charles Fremont
married Jessie, the daughter of the celebrated landscape painter.
Old Bullion, who once took a thirty years view of the United States Senate, with the Hon. Thomas H. Benton
standing in the foreground, and published his observation on the subject in a number of large volumes. O. B.'s daughter is the first thing John Charles
is known to have stolen; it is believed the Federal Government
would be several millions the richer if she had also been the last.
He has held offices of various ranks in the United States army, but is understood to have always been a non-commissioned officer in his own family, Jessie having ranked him from the start.
His military career in Missouri
is well known.
It was brief, but not brilliant.
His skill as a General was not formidable to our Government, but his want of skill was very much so to his own, and he was ordered to follow like...