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General Horace Porter, Campaigning with Grant, Chapter 2 (search)
Chapter 2 A higher grade created for Grant Grant's first meeting with Lincoln in command of all the armies interview with Stanton Grant in a communicative mood at General Meade's headquarters Grant's narrow escape from capture Grant's enormous responsibility Grant's personal staff When I reached Washington I went at once to headquarters, and endeavored to see the commander-in-chief for the purpose of presenting General Grant's letter, but found, after two or three attempthe Revolution, while the guillotine was at work, he never heard the name of Robespierre that he did not take off his hat to see whether his head was still on his shoulders; some of our officers were similarly inclined when they heard the name of Stanton. However, I found the Secretary quite civil, and even patient, and, to all appearances, disposed to allow my head to continue to occupy the place where I was in the habit of wearing it. Nevertheless, the interview ended without his having yield
General Horace Porter, Campaigning with Grant, Chapter 19 (search)
Winchester Grant under fire at Fort Harrison consternation in Richmond Secretary Stanton visits Grant how Grant received the news from Cedar Creek General Graer 16 a steamer arrived from Washington, having aboard the Secretary of War, Mr. Stanton; the new Secretary of the Treasury, Mr. Fessenden, who had succeeded Chase; n the excursion, and was much interested in the conversations which occurred. Stanton did most of the talking. He began by saying: In getting away from my desk, anly retreat successfully from almost any position — if he only starts in time. Stanton laughed heartily at the general's way of putting it, and remarked: But in all joined the party, and pointed out the objects of interest along his lines. Mr. Stanton then spoke with much earnestness of the patient labors and patriotic course nd an admiration for his character which amounted to positive reverence. Mr. Stanton wore spectacles, and had a habit of removing them from time to time when he
General Horace Porter, Campaigning with Grant, Chapter 22 (search)
into Sam. As I said, while he was not by any means conspicuous in the class, and never sought to be, he had enough marked characteristics to prevent him from being considered commonplace, and every one associated with him was sure to remember him and retain a high regard for him. The anxiety of the authorities at Washington had now become so intense regarding Thomas's delay that Grant became more anxious than ever to have prompt action taken in Tennessee. On the morning of December 7 Stanton sent a despatch to City Point, saying: . .. Thomas seems unwilling to attack, because it is hazardous — as if all war was anything but hazardous. . . . The government was throwing the entire responsibility upon General Grant, and really censuring him in its criticisms of Thomas. Grant telegraphed to Washington: There is no better man to repel an attack than Thomas, but I fear he is too cautious to take the initiative. On the 8th he sent a long despatch to General Thomas, urging him stren
General Horace Porter, Campaigning with Grant, Chapter 23 (search)
of War sent me a message that he would like to see me at the War Department, at the earliest moment, on a matter of public importance. Well, I was rather flattered by that. I says to myself: Perhaps the whole Southern Confederacy is moving on Stanton, and he has sent for a war Democrat to get between him and them and sort of whirl 'em back. I hurried up to his office, and when I got in he closed the door, looked all around the room like a stage assassin to be sure that we were alone, then ted scared, and tried to find a trap-door in the floor to fall through, but I didn't. I ran my eye over the despatch, seeing that it was addressed to me and signed by Ingalls, and read: Klat-awa ni-ka sit-kum mo-litsh weght o-coke kon-a-mox lum. Stanton, who was glaring at me over the top of his spectacles, looking as savage as a one-eyed dog in a meatshop, now roared out, You see I have discovered everything! I handed back the despatch, and said, Well, if you've discovered everything, what do
General Horace Porter, Campaigning with Grant, Chapter 25 (search)
with any authority whatever to treat for peace, at once telegraphed the contents of the communication to the Secretary of War, and asked for instructions. The despatch was submitted to Mr. Lincoln at the Capitol, where he had gone, according to the usual custom at the closing hours of the session of Congress, in order to act promptly upon bills presented to him. He consulted with the Secretaries of State and War, and then wrote with his own hand a reply, dated midnight, which was signed by Stanton, and forwarded to General Grant. It was received the morning of the 4th, and read as follows: The President directs me to say to you that he wishes you to have no conference with General Lee, unless it be for the capitulation of General Lee's army, or on some minor and purely military matter. He instructs me to say that you are not to decide, discuss, or confer upon any political question. Such questions the President holds III his own hands, and will submit them to no military conferenc
General Horace Porter, Campaigning with Grant, Chapter 26 (search)
ers for a general movement of the Union armies against the enemy's right. General Grant proposed to the President that forenoon that he should accompany him on a trip to the Petersburg front. The invitation was promptly accepted, and several hours were spent in visiting the troops, who cheered the President enthusiastically. He was greatly interested in looking at the prisoners who had been captured that morning; and while at Meade's headquarters, about two o'clock, sent a despatch to Stanton, saying: . . I have nothing to add to what General Meade reports, except that I have seen the prisoners myself, and they look like there might be the number he states-1600. The President carried a map with him, which he took out of his pocket and examined several times. He had the exact location of the troops marked on it, and he exhibited a singularly accurate knowledge of the various positions. Upon the return to headquarters at City Point, he sat for a while by the camp-fire; and a
General Horace Porter, Campaigning with Grant, Chapter 31 (search)
large stone, and called for pencil and paper. Colonel Badeau handed his order-book to the general, who wrote on one of the leaves the following message, a copy of which was sent to the nearest telegraph-station. It was dated 4:30 P. M.: Hon. E. M. Stanton, Secretary of War, Washington. General Lee surrendered the Army of Northern Virginia this afternoon on terms proposed by myself. The accompanying additional correspondence will show the conditions fully. U. S. Grant, Lieutenant-generd that this circumstance had been the means of preventing him from staining his hands with the blood of so great and good a man. Washington, as well as the whole country, was plunged in an agony of grief, and the excitement knew no bounds. Stanton's grief was uncontrollable, and at the mention of Mr. Lincoln's name he would break down and weep bitterly. General Grant and the Secretary of War busied themselves day and night in pushing a relentless pursuit of the conspirators, who were cau
General Horace Porter, Campaigning with Grant, Chapter 32 (search)
apidly to the platform. He advanced to where the President was standing, and the two shook hands. The members of the cabinet then stepped up to greet him. He took their extended hands, and had a few pleasant words to say to each of them, until Stanton reached out his hand. Then Sherman's whole manner changed in an instant; a cloud of anger overspread his features, and, smarting under the wrong the Secretary had done him in his published bulletins after the conditional treaty with Johnston, tf the day. There was no personal intercourse between the two men till some time afterward, when General Grant appeared, as usual, in the role of peacemaker, and brought them together. Sherman showed a manly spirit of forgiveness in going to see Stanton in his last illness, manifesting his respect and tendering his sympathy. Sherman's active mind was crowded with the remembrance of past events, and he spent all the day in pointing out the different subdivisions of his army as they moved by,