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especially in the West, had obtained great and decisive successes.* Missouri was now placed beyond danger of invasion; the rebel power was broken down in Arkansas; the mouth of the Rio Grande having been occupied (p. 373), it had destroyed one of the principal outlets of the rebels to foreign intercourse and trade; the capture of Vicksburg and Port Hudson had not onlv cut off the rebel communications with insurgents beyond the Mississippi, but had thrown the great river wide open for commerce and its uses; and the victory at Chattanooga, and the occupation of Eastern Tennessee, had brought under our control the whole state of Tennessee, and portions of Mississippi and Louisiana on the shores of the river. In Virginia, and the region of the Potomac, no change of moment had occurred since the battle of Gettysburg; and in North Carolina, and the states further south, no operations of magnitude had taken place, except the siege of Charleston and the grand naval attack upon its defences.
The commerce and trade of the country were, on the whole, healthy and prosperous during 1863, although
j not increased to the extent that was expected in consequence of the opening
| of the Mississippi, the continued occupation of the Atlantic coast of South and North Carolina, and the penetration of our forces into Texas. Extensive and carefully prepared regulations were adopted by the government with
* These were so marked that Mr. Stanton, in his annual report, December, 18G3, was ablo to say :—" The success of our arms during the last year has enabled the department to make a reduction of over £200,000,l■0j in the war estimate for the ensuing fiscal year." j
reference to trade with the inhabitants within the lines of the army in the insurgent states; but the results were very limited. Foreign commerce was contracted to a great extent in consequence of the improved harvests in Europe and the less demand for our breadstuff's and provisions. The shipping interests had suffered the most severely, because of the continued success of the rebel privateers in burning and' destroying American vessels, and the transfer of a vast carrying trade to foreign flags.* This is made strikingly evident, by examining a few figures on the subject. Our foreign carrying trade, in 1800, was valued, under the American flag, at $234,000,000, under foreign flags, at $150,000,000; but, in 1863, it was valued, under the American flag, at about $110,000,000, and under foreign flags, at nearly $300,000,000. The rebel privateers, increased in number to about twenty, had been carrying on, during the year, plundering and burning on a large scale, and with almost incredible audacity. Up to the close of January, 1864, it was reported that some 200 merchant vessels had been destroyed, of which the aggregate ton
* " These rovers," as Secretary Wells remarked, "sailing sometimes under the English and sometimes under the rebel flag, without a port of their own which they can enter, or to which they can send a singlo prize for adjudication, have roamed the seas, capturing and destroying tho commercial ships of a nation at peace with Great Britain and France; but yet, when these corsairs have needed repairs or supplies, they have experienced no difficulty in procuring them, because it had been deemed expedient to recognize the rebels as belligerents. Not one of tho many vessels captured by these rovers has ever been judicially condemned as a legal capture. Wanton destruction has been the object and rurpose of tho captors, who have burnt and destroyed ihe property of their merchant victims."
nage was estimated to be not less than 90,000. The value of the vessels and cargoes thus wantonly destroyed, was estimated at $13,500,000*
The diplomatic correspondence with England and France, during the year, had served to bring out clearly the ground taken by our government on the various subjects noticed by Mr. Lincoln at the beginning of his message to Congress in December (p. 386). As to England, her course had been felt to be illegal, unfriendly, and unhandsome, in the extreme; and more than this, our government had given a significant warning that England would be held responsible for the damage done to our commerce by lawless rovers, like the Alabama, and other vessels built at Liverpool, and allowed to set out from thence to prey upon our unprotected merchant marine. It will be seen, by and by, that this warning was meant to be, and was, a reality, which the English ministry had to meet fully and fairly. With the French government our relations had continued to be of a
* The principal agent in these piratical exploits was the Alabama, of which vessel and her doings we have spoken on a previous page (p. 268). Pollard is disposed to boast of the " few Confederate cruisers which defied the power (of the United States navy), and burnt Yankee vessels even within sight ot their commercial marts." Fully one-third of the captures noted above were made by Scmmes in the Alabama. The rebel chronicler also gives vent to the disappointed hatred and scorn of the insurgents, one and all, towards England and the English government, who, under the pressure of certain plain-spoken words by the United States government, had refused to allow the rams and ironclads recently built at Liverpool to be fitted out and enter upoii their piratical career.—" Third Year of the War," pp. 7 41-2. See also, for the "Protest nnd Remonstrance " of the English government against rebel efforts to get cruisers for their purpose in England, Appleton's "American Annual Vyclopadia" for 1864, pp. 556-7.
friendly and cordial character, unless possibly Louis Napoleon's designs in Mexico may be thought to have given rise to some ill feeling. France disavowed any intention of establishing a monarchical government in Mexico, oi taking any measures which might be considered inimical to the well-understood policy of the United States in regard to foreign interference in America. For the present, especially dnr ing the continuance of our own difficul- , ties in putting down the rebellion, our government had determined upon a course of strict neutrality in the war between France and Mexico; but there j was no sign of willingness to acquiesce in the imposition of a foreign prince upon the Mexican people by foreign armies. This was shown very plainly by a resolution passed by a unanimous I vote in the House of Representatives, which, though not acted on in the Senate, undoubtedly expressed the settled sentiment of the people of the | United States. The resolution, adopted April 4th, 1864, was as follows:
"Resolved, That the Congress of the j United States are unwilling, by silence, \ to leave the nations of the world under the impression that they are indifferent I spectators of the deplorable events now \, transpiring in the Republic of Mexico; therefore, they think it fit to declare that it does not accord with the sentiment of the people of the United jj States to acknowledge a monarchical !I government erected on the ruins of any j i republican government in America, uu- 1| der the auspices of any European I power."
On the whole, then, at the close or I
1863, national affairs were in an encouraging and hopeful condition. Difficulties and trials there were, it is true; and political disputes and animosities, and sharp and bitter criminations and recriminations, were not only annoying hindrances, but productive of mischief to a large extent. Nevertheless, matters in general were in such a shape as that the people were more ready to believe the final triumph of our arms to be not far distant; and the burden on the country, in the immense expenditures and fearful mountain of debt which was being accumulated for future payment, was submitted to with a degree of readiness highly creditable to the patriotism of the people, and affording the best possible proof of their fixed convictions as to the ultimate result of the struggle through which the republic was passing.
As an illustration of the rebel style of talking at this date, and also of what they themselves thought of the position of their affairs, we may, in concluding the present chapter, refer to the speech of a noted secessionist, Robert Toombs. It was made before the legislature of Georgia, at Atlanta, November 9th,
1863, and presents anything but a flattering picture of the condition of matters in the "Confederacy," while there are, at the same time, the usual rebel braggadocio, inflation of style, and haughty assumption of superiority and right. "I wish I could tell you," he said, "that the sky is bright; but stern duty demands of me rather to tell you
truthful things Maryland
is overawed and overpowered. Kentucky is in the hands of the enemy. Tennessee is overrun, and the Mississippi, from the Falls of St. Anthony to the Balize, is in the hands of the enemy, and thus cutting in twain the great Valley of the Mississippi The fall of Vicksburg inflicted a terrible blow upon us, and it fell with scarce a blow in its defence. Our islands are lost, our coasts are ravaged, and our seaports captured or threatened. Let us meet the enemy, and if we are true to ourselves, true to our sacred cause, we shall triumph, and our land be free. . . . If the last dollar of the country, and the last drop of blood are necessary, take that; for I would rather see this whole country the cemetery of freemen than the habitation of slaves."
APPENDIX TO CHAPTER VI.
I.—THE PRESIDENT'S PROCLAMATION.
Witereas, In and by the Constitution of the United States, it is provided that the president " shall have power to grant reprieves and pardons for offences against the United States, except in cases of impeachment;" and
Whereat, A rebellion now exists, whereby the
loyal state governments of several states have for a long time been subverted, and many persons have committed and are now guilty of treason against the United States; and
Whereon, With reference to said rebellion and treason, laws have been enacted by Congress declaring forfeitures and confiscation of property and liberation of slaves, all upon terms and conditions therein state' 1, and. also declaring that the president was thereby authorized at any time thereafter, by proclamation, to extend to persons who may have participated in the existing rebellion in any state, or part thereof, pardon ami amnesty, with such exceptions and at suth t>mes and on such conditions as he may deem expedient for the public welfare; and
Wlirrea*, The congressional declaration for limited and conditional pardon accords with the well established judicial exposition of the pardoning power; and
Whereas, With reference to the said rebellion, the president of the United States has issued several proclamations with provisions in regard to the liberation of slaves; and
Whereas, It is now desired by some persons heretofore engaged in said rebellion to resume their allegiance to the United States, and to re-inaugurate loyal state governments within and for their respective states;
Therefore, I, Abraham Lincoln, president of the United States, do proclaim, declare, and make known to all persons who have directly, or by implication, participated in the existing rebellion, except as hereafter excepted, that a full pardon is hereby granted to them and each of them, with restoration of al' rights of property, except as to slaves, and in property cases where the rights of third parties shall have intervened, and upon the condition that every such person shall take and subscribe an oath, and thenceforward keep and maintain said oath inviolate, and which oath shall be registered for permanent preservation, and shall be of the tenor and efTect following, to wit:
"I, , do solemnly swear, in the presence of
Almighty God, that I will henceforth faithfully support, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States and the Union of the states thereunder; and that I will, in like manner, abide by and faithfully support all acts of Congress passed during the existing rebellion with reference to slaves, so long and so far as not repealed, modified, or held void by Congress or by decision of the Supreme Court, and that I will in like manner abide by and faithfully support all proclamations of the president made during the existing rebellion having reference to slaves, so long and so far as not modified or declared void by decision of the Supreme Court. So help me God."
The persons excepted from the benefits of the foregoing provisions are: all who are or shall have been civil or diplomatic officers or agents of the socalled confederate government; all who have left judicial stations under the United States to aid the rebellion; all who are or shall have been military
or naval officers of said so-called confederate government above the rank of colonel in the army, of lieutenant in the navy; all who left seats in the United States Congress to aid the rebellion; all who resigned commissions in the army or navy of lie United States, and afterward aided the rebellion; and all who have engaged in any way in treating colored persons or white persons in charge of such, otherwise than lawfully as prisoners of war, and which persons may have been found in the United States service as soldiers, seamen, or in any other capacity.
And I do further proclaim, declare, and make known, that whenever, in any of the states of Arkansas, Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, and North Carolina, a number of persons not less than one-tenth in number of the votes cast in such states, at the presidential election of the year of our Lord 18C0, each having taken the oath aforesaid, and not having since violated it, and being a qualified voter by the election law of the state existing immediately before the so-called act of secession, and excluding j all others, shall re-establish a state government, which shall be republican, and in no wise contravening said oath, such shall be recognized as the true government of the state, and the state shall receive thereunder the benefit of the constitutions! provision, which declares that
"The United States shall guarantee to every state in this Union a republican form of government and shall protect each of them against invasion, and on application to the Legislature, or of the Executive, when the Legislature cannot be convened, against domestic violence."
And I do further proclaim, declare, and make known, that any provision which may be adopted by such state government in relation to the freed people of such state which shall recognize and declare their permanent freedom, provide for their education, and which may yet be consistent, as a temporary arrangement, with their present condition as a laboring, landless, and homeless class, will not be objected to by the national executive.
And it is suggested as not improper, that, in constructing a loyal state government in any state, the name of the state, the boundary, the subdivisions, the constitution, and the general code of laws, as before the rebellion, be maintained, subject only to the modifications made necessary by the conditions herein before stated, and such others, if any, not contravening said conditions, and which may be deemed expedient by those framing the new state government. To avoid misunderstanding, it may be proper to say that this proclamation, so far as it relates to state governments, has no reference tc
states wherein loyal state governments have all the while been maintained; and for the same reason it may be proper to further say, that whether members sent to Congress from any state shall be admitted to scats, constitutionally rests exclusively with the respective Houses, and not to any extent with the executive. And still further, that this proclamation is intended to present the people of the states wherein the national authority has been suspended, and the loyal state governments have been subverted, a mode in and by which the national authority and loyal state governments may be re-established within said states, or in any of them. And, while the mode presented is the best the executive can suggest with his present impressions, it must not be understood that no other possible mode would be acceptable.
Given under my hand at the City of Washington, the 8th day of December, A. D. one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, and of the independence of the United States of America the eighty-eighth.
By the president,
W. H. Seward,
Secretary of State.
Whereas, It has become necessary to define the cases in which insurgent enemies are entitled to the benefits of the proclamation of the president of the United States, which was made on the 8th day of December, 1863, and the manner in which they shall proceed to avail themselves of these benefits; and whereas the objects of that proclamation were to suppress the insurrection and to restore the authority of the United States; and whereat the amnesty therein proposed by the president was offered with reference to these objects alone:
Now, therefore, I, Abraham Lincoln, president of the United States, do hereby proclaim and declare that the said proclamation docs not apply to the cases of persons who, at the time when they seek to obi ain the benefits thereof by taking the oath thcrel y prescribed, are in military, naval, or
civil confinement or custody, or under bonds, or on parole of the civil, military, or naval authorities, or agents of the United States, as prisoners of war, oi persons detained for offences of any kind, either before or after conviction; and that on the contrary it does apply only to those persons who, being yet at large, and free from any arrest, confinement, or duress, shall voluntarily come forward and take the oath, with the purpose of restoring peace, and establishing the national authority.
Persons excluded from the amnesty offered in the said proclamation may apply to the president for clemency, like all other offenders, and their application will receive due consideration.
I do further declare and proclaim, that the oath presented in the aforesaid proclamation of the 8th of December, 1863, may be taken and subscribed before any commissioned officer, civil, military, or naval, in the service of the United States, or any civil or military officer of a state or territory not in insurrection, who, by the laws thereof, may be qualified for administering oaths.
All officers who receive such oaths are hereby authorized to give certificates thereof to the persons respectively by whom they are made, and such officers are hereby required to transmit the original record of such oaths, at as early a day as may be convenient, to the department of state, where they will be deposited, and remain in the archives of the government.
The secretary of state will keep a register thereof, and will, on application, in proper cases, issue certificates of such record in the customary form of official certificates.
In testimony whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed. Done at the City of Washington, the 26th day of March, in the year of our Lord, 1864, and of the independence of the United States the eighty eighth.
By the president:
W. H. Seward,
Secretary of State.