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Edward L. Pierce, Memoir and letters of Charles Sumner: volume 4, Chapter 45: an antislavery policy.—the Trent case.—Theories of reconstruction.—confiscation.—the session of 1861-1862. (search)
the issue of a proclamation of emancipation. Sumner was impatient during the rest of the summer and early autumn with the policy of forbearance towards slavery, which, as he thought, gave moral strength to the rebellion; and he determined to arrest it by an appeal to the country. He chafed under the undue influence of Kentucky and other border slave States over the Administration; and he was sorely grieved at the President's revocation of Fremont's proclamation. He wrote Dr. Lieber, September 17, six days after the issue of the order revoking it:— The London Times is right. We cannot conquer the rebels as the war is now conducted. There will be a vain masquerade of battles, a flux of blood and treasure, and nothing done! Never has there been a moment of history when so much was all compressed into a single line and brought directly under a single mind. Our President is now dictator, imperator,—which you will; but how vain to have the power of a god and not to use it god