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rom General Sumner and General Wright, his successors, thanking me for my aid in helping them to discharge their duties at this very critical period. Neither of these gentlemen believed that General Johnston had any knowledge of any plot on this coast; nor that there was any necessity for the unusual and precipitous manner which the War Department pursued. It is plain that, if the Department of War thought there was any danger, they would not have shipped the arms at Benicia East by way of Panama. They would have kept them here for us to put down rebellion. John G. Downey. This chapter having been submitted by letter to General W. W. Mackall, Assistant Adjutant-General of the Department of California in 1861, he replied January 7, 1876. The following is an extract from the letter of General Mackall: That your father exercised his command honestly for the Government he served in California is thoroughly known to me; but, as a matter of course, my evidence can have no wei
Robert Underwood Johnson, Clarence Clough Buell, Battles and Leaders of the Civil War: The Opening Battles. Volume 1., Notes of a Confederate staff-officer at Shiloh. (search)
stretched upon General Johnston's blankets, which were spread at the foot of a tree. After this was done, and the order dispatched by a special courier so that the transfer might be made in time to place Colonel Maney at the head of the brigade in the coming battle, something led us to talk of the Pacific Coast, in which quarter I had served eight years. Having been at Washington during the momentous winter of 1860-61, I spoke of the fact that when Colonel Sumner had been sent via the Isthmus of Panama to supersede him (Johnston) in the command of the Department of the Pacific in April, 1861, Sumner's berth in the steamer had been taken under an assumed name, so that the newspapers might not get and divulge the fact of his departure on that errand in time for intelligence of it to reach the Pacific Coast by the overland route, and lead General Johnston to act with a supposed powerful disunion party in California in a revolt against the Federal authority before Sumner's arrival. Yes,
persons with European costumes, of every fashion, fabric, and colour, and walk the streets with a solemn dignity that even a Spanish hidalgo might envy. I had not supposed that I should be so much impressed with the variety and beauty of the vegetable and insect life of the tropics; but even the broiling sun did not deter me from making daily little excursions around the island, armed with a white cotton umbrella, and wearing, after the manner of the foreign residents, the broad-brimmed Panama hat with its encircling muslin turban. I must have afforded some amusement to the natives, and others familiar with tropical scenery, as I stalked abroad thus defended, stopping every now and then to examine some strange and beautiful flower, or to admire the innumerable humming-birds and gorgeous butterflies that fluttered above it, or to purchase, at the stalls of the incessantly chattering negresses, luscious fruits which they offered me, and of which I did not even know the name. The
Ulysses S. Grant, Personal Memoirs of U. S. Grant, Return of the Army-marriage-ordered to the Pacific coast-crossing the Isthmus-arrival at San Francisco (search)
n the 5th of July eight companies sailed for Aspinwall [in Panama, reached July 16]. We numbered a little over seven hundreded by boats to Gorgona, at which place they took mules for Panama, some twenty-five miles further. Those who travelled overe described, for Gorgona. From this place they marched to Panama, and were soon comfortably on the steamer anchored in the se, I permitted the company detailed with me to proceed to Panama. The captain and the doctors accompanied the men, and I we sick and the soldiers who had families. The regiment at Panama was also affected with the disease; but there were better the people with me died, either at Cruces or on the way to Panama. There was no agent of the transportation company at Cruce than double the original price. Thus we finally reached Panama. The steamer, however, could not proceed until the cholerth infantry on the 5th of July, now lie buried on the Isthmus of Panama or on Flamingo island in Panama Bay. One amusing
Ulysses S. Grant, Personal Memoirs of U. S. Grant, San Francisco-Early California experiences-life on the Pacific coast-promoted Captain-Flush times in California (search)
h there were hundreds disappointed, many of whom now fill unknown graves; others died wrecks of their former selves, and many, without a vicious instinct, became criminals and outcasts. Many of the real scenes in early California life exceed in strangeness and interest any of the mere products of the brain of the novelist. Those early days in California brought out character. It was a long way off then, and the journey was expensive. The fortunate could go by Cape Horn or by the Isthmus of Panama; but the mass of pioneers crossed the plains with their ox-teams. This took an entire summer. They were very lucky when they got through with a yoke of worn-out cattle. All other means were exhausted in procuring the outfit on the Missouri River. The immigrant, on arriving, found himself a stranger, in a strange land, far from friends. Time pressed, for the little means that could be realized from the sale of what was left of the outfit would not support a man long at California p
Ulysses S. Grant, Personal Memoirs of U. S. Grant, Resignation-private life-life at Galena-the coming crisis (search)
t the Pacific coast very much attached to it, and with the full expectation of making it my future home. That expectation and that hope remained uppermost in my mind until the Lieutenant-Generalcy bill was introduced into Congress in the winter of 1863-4. The passage of that bill, and my promotion, blasted my last hope of ever becoming a citizen of the further West. In the late summer of 1854 I rejoined my family, to find in it a son whom I had never seen, born while I was on the Isthmus of Panama. I was now to commence, at the age of thirty-two, a new struggle for our support. My wife had a farm near St. Louis, to which we went, but I had no means to stock it. A house had to be built also. I worked very hard, never losing a day because of bad weather, and accomplished the object in a moderate way. If nothing else could be done I would load a cord of wood on a wagon and take it to the city for sale. I managed to keep along very well until 1858, when I was attacked by fever a
Mrs. John A. Logan, Reminiscences of a Soldier's Wife: An Autobiography, Chapter 15: (search)
rest beyond the usual routine of calls and the constant employment of writing political letters. There was very little done in the House or Senate, as almost all the time was devoted to political rivalries over the nominations for President and Vice-President for 1880. Congress adjourned early for the holidays, but, as usual, we remained in Washington. There were not in those days so many opportunities for members of Congress and senators to enjoy their holidays by trips to Cuba, Bermuda, Panama, and other places which have been made so accessible in these days of progress. Besides this, General Logan always took advantage of what they called the holidays to bring up to date his reports on cases before the important committees on which he served. One of the most brilliant receptions ever held in the White House took place January i, 1880. Mrs. Hayes had done me the honor to invite me to assist in receiving on that day, and, as we had to reach the White House at ten o'clock, I a
ment of recruits at Bedloe's Island, intended for assignment to the regiments on the Pacific coast. I think there were on the island (now occupied by the statue of Liberty Enlightening the World) about three hundred recruits. For a time I was the only officer with them, but shortly before we started for California, Lieutenant Francis H. Bates, of the Fourth Infantry, was placed in command. We embarked for the Pacific coast in July, 1855, and made the journey without incident via the Isthmus of Panama, in due time landing our men at Benecia Barracks, above San Francisco. From this point I proceeded to join my company at Fort Reading, and on reaching that post, found orders directing me to relieve Lieutenant John B. Hood-afterward well known as a distinguished general in the Confederate service. Lieutenant Hood was in command of the personal mounted escort of Lieutenant R. S. Williamson, who was charged with the duty of making such explorations and surveys as would determine the
on of some new regiments to the regular army, I had passed through the grade of first lieutenant and reached that of captain in the Thirteenth United States Infantry, of which General W. T. Sherman had recently been made the colonel. When relieved from further duty at Yamhill by Captain Owen, I left for the Atlantic coast to join my new regiment. A two days ride brought me down to Portland, whence I sailed to San Franciso, and at that city took passage by steamer for New York via the Isthmus of Panama, in company with a number of officers who were coming East under circumstances like my own. At this time California was much agitated on the question of secession, and the secession element was so strong that considerable apprehension was felt by the Union people lest the State might be carried into the Confederacy. As a consequence great distrust existed in all quarters, and the loyal passengers on the steamer, not knowing what might occur during our voyage, prepared to meet eme
October 10. Six pickets of the Fourth cavalry regiment, stationed four or five miles from Paducah, Kentucky, were attacked by a large force of rebels this morning. Two were mortally wounded and two taken prisoners, with their horses and equipments. The rebels had divided their force, and in the excitement fired into each other. They then fled, each party taking the other for the National cavalry.--Boston Transcript, October 11. The gunboat Wachusett was launched at the Navy Yard at Charlestown, Mass. Intelligence that the Sumter was still cruising among the Windward Islands, was received at Panama, N. G., by the British steamer from St. Thomas.--Panama Star, October 10. The Twenty-ninth and Thirtieth regiments of Indiana Volunteers, under the command of Colonels Miller and Bass, arrived at Louisville, Kentucky, en route for the seat of war.--Louisville Journal, October 11.
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