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Oliver Otis Howard, Autobiography of Oliver Otis Howard, major general , United States army : volume 1, Chapter 5: graduation from the United States Military Academy, 1854; brevet Second Lieutenant in Ordnance Department, 1855-56 (search)
ter mark. I did not stay at Augusta long enough for a second trial of Independence Day. It was while on duty at this arsenal that I became acquainted with James G. Blaine, then editor of the Kennebec Journal, a Republican paper. The day I first saw him he had a controversy with the editor of the Argus of opposite politics. I man who had a better command of language than he; but his rejoinders to the other editor, a young man of about his age, were incisive and extremely forcible. Blaine soon after that became a member of the Maine Legislature and later the Speaker of the House. While doing his part in this capacity I went to him with an importanlly recalled by Mrs. Howard and myself. Here we first became acquainted with the Rev. E. B. Webb, D. D., pastor of the Congregational church, who was perhaps Mr. Blaine's strongest friend, and, if I may say so, he and his were even more intimate with my family and always unselfishly devoted to my best interests. We sometimes
Oliver Otis Howard, Autobiography of Oliver Otis Howard, major general , United States army : volume 1, Chapter 7: at West Point as instructor, 1857-61; the outbreak of the Civil War (search)
flict; certainly not merely for the sake of promotion. We do hope and pray that the differences will be settled without bloodshed. Quite early in the spring I wrote to Governor Washburn, of Maine, and offered my services. His reply was unfavorable. Commissioned officers of regiments were all to be elected by the men. He, himself, had no power to choose. But the fact of the offer became known at Augusta. Not long afterwards, about the middle of May, a dispatch came to me from the Hon. James G. Blaine, then the youthful Speaker of the Maine House of Representatives. It read: Will you, if elected, accept the colonelcy of the Kennebec Regiment Over this dispatch Mrs. Howard and I had a conference. We thought it would be wiser to begin with a major's commission, so that I might be better prepared for a colonelcy when I came to it by promotion. Still, my heart began to swell with a growing ambition; for were not civilians without military knowledge taking regiments or even bri
Oliver Otis Howard, Autobiography of Oliver Otis Howard, major general , United States army : volume 1, Chapter 8: Colonel of the Third Maine regiment; departure for the front (search)
y as an accomplished fact; so that I telegraphed to Blaine that I was en route, wrote a brief note to my home, before five the same afternoon. Here I received Mr. Blaine's reply as follows: Augusta, 29th of May, 1861.agreeable. Truly yours, in great haste, [Signed] Blaine. This letter did not reach me at West Point. AHave him come up. This energetic visitor was James G. Blaine. One could hardly find a more striking charactemanagement he had already become popular. Such was Blaine at thirty years of age. When I was presented thes adjutant and organize his staff himself, answered Blaine, smiling. That reply was heplful to me, and Washbuellion in short order with this sort of spirit; eh, Blaine? Thus Washburn ran on. Blaine laughed as he quietlBlaine laughed as he quietly assured the governor that he was too sanguine. If you had come from a place as near the border as I did, yot this solemn Howard will keep us at arm's length. Blaine continued to befriend me. He told them that they wo
Oliver Otis Howard, Autobiography of Oliver Otis Howard, major general , United States army : volume 1, Chapter 10: camping in Washington; in command of a brigade (search)
have been a disastrous fight under incompetent leaders. But now in the retrospect one hardly casts blame. Experience and the habit of working together would have hindered the panic at the junction. The famous Magruder and D. H. Hill were on the other side in this combat. The victory then gave them joy and confidence-extravagant, indeed, but thus it was in both armies early in the war. Modesty and mutual respect appeared in reports and dispatches only later. Before leaving Augusta Mr. Blaine and I were talking of the army to be organized from the volunteers. I-e remarked: You, Howard, will be the first brigadier from Maine. Of course the proposition to me, accustomed only to wrinkled captains and white-headed field officers, appeared visionary. Later, July 4th, I answered another friend who made the same suggestion: I am as high as I desire. What could I effect in a higher position I do not think there is any likelihood at present of taking me from my regiment. Yet, t
us. Why not? Sherman interposed with some severity, saying: Wood, let Howard alone I want one officer who don't drink! There is a letter which I wrote from that Cassville camp, which, coming back to me, has in it some new items: Near Cassville, May 22d, 1864. I haven't written you for several days, and am not sure about this letter getting back, but will try and send it. Charles (then Lieutenant, Colonel Charles H. Howard), Gilbreth (Lieutenant Gilbreth, aid-de-camp), Stinson (Mr. Blaine's nephew, captain and aid-de-camp), Frank (my secretary, Frank G. Gilman, of Boston), and myself are all well. Instead of three days we have had some twelve or thirteen days fighting. It is not always engaging our main lines, but heavy skirmishing. The Confederates have a rear guard of cavalry supported by infantry. They arrange barricades of rails and logs along the line. When driven from one, another force has another barricade ready some half or three-quarters of a mile on. In t