BECK index

Lincoln’s War for Union in 1862

by Sanderson Beck

US Civil War January-February 1862
US Civil War March-May 1862
US Civil War June-July 1862
US Civil War August-October 1862
US Civil War November-December 1862

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US Civil War January-February 1862

      On 1 January 1862 the Confederate envoys Mason and Slidell were released from the Federal prison in Boston, and they resumed their mission to England on the British warship HMS Rinaldo.
      Union General George McClellan got typhoid fever in late December 1861, but on January 2 he said his condition improved. In the first 18 months of the war the Union lost 2% of their military to disease while the Confederate forces had 3.8% die from diarrhea, dysentery, and pulmonary illnesses.
      War Secretary Cameron resigned on January 11, and Lincoln granted his request to become the ambassador to Russia. On the 13th Lincoln chose the attorney Edwin Stanton to be Secretary of War, and the President appointed General Ambrose Burnside to command the Department of North Carolina. Two days later the US Senate confirmed Stanton. A 1,100-page report by the US House Committee on Contracts described the War Department’s corruption which caused faulty weapons, sick horses, and rotting food, and the House of Representatives voted to censure Cameron for highly injurious public service.
      Thaddeus Stevens on January 12 had introduced a bill to enlist 150,000 Negro troops that passed the House but was defeated in the US Senate.
      On January 19 at the battle of Mill Springs about 4,400 Union forces led by General George H. Thomas defeated 5,900 Confederates under generals George Crittenden and Felix Zollicoffer. The Confederates had 125 men killed and nearly twice as many (404) wounded as the Union which lost 39 dead. The Confederates retreated to Murfreesboro, Tennessee.
      Since General John C. Frémont’s attempt to emancipate slaves in Missouri, a hundred communities in the North circulated petitions to free slaves. Lincoln had talked with Representative George P. Fisher about emancipating about 1,800 slaves in the state of Delaware by compensating 587 men who owned them. Fisher drafted a bill to appropriate $500 per slave but could not find anyone in the Delaware legislature who would introduce the controversial measure. On January 22 the National Republican reported that Governor Charles Robinson in Kansas estimated that in 1861 his state had given refuge to about 5,000 fugitive slaves. Also many slaves from Missouri had escaped to Illinois and Iowa.
      On January 23 General Henry Halleck ordered in Missouri the arrest of those for the South who had refused to pay assessments to aid northern refugees. On the 27th Lincoln issued General War Order #1 setting February 22 for all land and sea forces to attack insurgents. On January 30 Halleck ordered troops to advance up the Cumberland and Tennessee rivers in Kentucky while warning General Ulysses S. Grant of muddy roads, and Grant decided to use gunboats. The next day Lincoln gave a special order for an attack against Manassas before February 22 to get General McClellan going. On February 3 the US Government wisely announced that captured crews of privateers would be treated as prisoners of war instead of as pirates.
      Jesse D. Bright of Indiana was President pro tempore of the United States Senate; but after he wrote an improper letter to the Confederate President Davis, the Senate expelled him on February 5. On that day Queen Victoria ended British restrictions on shipping gunpowder, arms, and ammunition. In 1862 southerners planted about half as much cotton so that they could grow more food and because the war blocked cotton sales. That year the British imported only 3% of the cotton they had in 1860.
      On February 6 General Grant and the US Navy led by Flag Officer Andrew Foote used seven gunboats and 15,000 ground troops to capture Fort Henry on the Tennessee River in 75 minutes from General Tilghman and about 3,200 Confederate forces who lost 79 men. Tilghman and 94 soldiers became prisoners, but he was exchanged in August.
      Confederates in western Virginia left Romney on February 7. While Federal forces moved in, the rebels went toward Winchester. The timber-clad USS Conestoga destroyed three Confederate steamers on the Tennessee River. General John McClernand renamed Fort Henry as Fort Foote. Also on the 7th General Burnside led about 7,500 Union soldiers and 16 gunboats that attacked Roanoke Island and Fort Barrow at Pork Point which was defended by about 3,000 Confederates. The next day the Confederate gunboats were overwhelmed, and the Conestoga defeated two more steamers; the Confederates burned three others to prevent their capture. Only 60 men were killed, but about 2,500 rebels were captured. On February 10 the USS Delaware and Marines on the Pasquotank River captured the CSS Ellis and sank the Seabird, and the Confederates burned three more ships. Union forces destroyed the fort at Cobb’s Point.
      Senator Charles Sumner on February 11 introduced “Resolutions on Secession and Reconstruction” which concluded,

Congress will assume complete jurisdiction of such vacated territory
where such unconstitutional and illegal things have been attempted,
and will proceed to establish therein
republican forms of government under the Constitution;
and in the execution of this trust will provide carefully
for the protection of all the inhabitants thereof,
for the security of families, the organization of labor,
the encouragement of industry, and the welfare of society,
and will in every way discharge the duties
of a just, merciful, and paternal government.1

      On February 13 the West Virginia Constitutional Convention met at Wheeling and decided that “no slave or free person of color should come into the state for permanent residence.”
      On the 14th General Grant and Foote with the ironclad USS Galena and 24,531 men led the attack on Fort Donelson, Tennessee that was defended by 16,171 Confederates. After Foote was injured, the gunboat attack was suspended, but it resumed the next day on the Cumberland River. Confederate General Johnson Pillow aided by General Simon Bolivar Buckner assaulted General McClernand’s troops. Former US Secretary of War and now Confederate General John Floyd with Pillow decided to surrender while Buckner remained in command for a while. Col. Nathan Bedford Forrest led the cavalry out of Fort Donelson to safety while Floyd and Pillow escaped. Buckner and Grant were friends before the war. The older Union General Charles F. Smith told Confederates he would demand “immediate and unconditional surrender.” Grant then insisted on that, and Buckner complied on the 16th. Buckner and 15,000 Confederate soldiers became prisoners of war. Grant became famous for this victory, and the words “unconditional surrender” were substituted for the initials of U. S. Grant. He was promoted to command West Tennessee while General William Tecumseh Sherman was put in charge of the Department of Cairo at Paducah, Kentucky.
      General McClellan promised to send Foote about 600 more sailors. President Lincoln’s 11-year-old son Willie got typhoid fever in February and died of it on the 20th.
      The newly elected Confederate Congress met in Richmond on February 18. The next day Confederates evacuated Clarksville, Tennessee as Union General C. F. Smith took over Fort Defiance and the town. Rebels also left the forts defending Columbus, Kentucky by the Mississippi River. Governor Isham Harris fled from Nashville and moved his government to Memphis while General Sidney Johnston led his troops to Murfreesboro. Nashville was loaded with supplies, but fleeing citizens filled up the trains. They destroyed much and burned 30,000 pounds of bacon and ham on February 21. The next day President Jefferson Davis was inaugurated outside in the rain, and he criticized the Northern government for violating civil rights by suspending the writ of habeas corpus and incarcerating political prisoners. Five days later the Confederate Congress gave Davis the power to suspend habeas corpus, but he would use it much less than Lincoln did. He suspended habeas corpus in Richmond, Petersburg and other Virginia towns, and in the next few months he would extend it to western Virginia, eastern Tennessee, and the South Carolina coast. Davis also proclaimed martial law in Richmond and other cities in Virginia.
      Union gunboats moved into the Savannah River to cut off Fort Pulaski in Georgia from Confederate installations. On the 23rd Lincoln appointed Senator Andrew Johnson the Military Governor of Tennessee. The USS Tyler captured 1,100 sacks and barrels of flour with 6,000 bushels of wheat from docks at Clifton by the Tennessee River. Foote’s armada had 4 ironclad boats, 2 mortar boats, and 3 transport ships for 1,000 troops. On February 25 Federal troops occupied Nashville and would hold it to the end of the war.
      On February 26 President Lincoln approved legislation that created a national currency. A New Orleans Committee of Safety informed Confederate President Davis that their Navy had a debt of some $800,000 and no funds.
      Julia Ward Howe used the melody of “John Brown’s Body” for the new lyrics of the “Battle Hymn of the Republic.” She wrote them in November 1861, and they were published in the Atlantic Monthly in February 1862.

Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord;
He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored;
He hath loosed the fateful lightning of His terrible swift sword:
His truth is marching on.

Glory, Glory, hallelujah!
Glory, glory, hallelujah!
Glory, glory, hallelujah!
His truth is marching on.

I have seen Him in the watch-fires of a hundred circling camps,
They have builded Him an altar in the evening dews and damps;
I can read His righteous sentence by the dim and flaring lamps:
His day is marching on. (Chorus)

I have read a fiery gospel writ in burnished rows of steel:
“As ye deal with my contemners, so with you my grace shall deal;”
Let the Hero, born of woman, crush the serpent with his heel,
Since God is marching on. (Chorus)

He has sounded forth the trumpet that shall never call retreat;
He is sifting out the hearts of men before His judgment-seat;
Oh, be swift, my soul, to answer Him! Be jubilant, my feet!
Our God is marching on. (Chorus)

In the beauty of the lilies Christ was born across the sea,
With a glory in His bosom that transfigures you and me.
As He died to make men holy, let us die to make men free,
While God is marching on. (Chorus)

US Civil War March-May 1862

      On March 3 the US Secretary of State Seward sent a letter to Charles Francis Adams, the American minister in England, to explain the policy of the Monroe Doctrine in relation to the recent establishment of France’s Emperor Napoleon III as the monarch in Mexico. In October 1861 Seward and the US had declined to join the military expedition of France, Spain, and Britain to collect debts owed to them by Mexico. Lincoln’s policy was,

No monarchical government which could be founded in Mexico,
in the presence of foreign navies and armies
in the waters and upon the soil of Mexico,
would have any prospect of security or permanency.2

Seward warned that a European monarch ruling Mexico would not be tolerated by the US and that one would quickly fall unless it was supported by European alliances and that it would be “the beginning rather than the ending of revolution in Mexico.”
      By March 2 the Confederate General Leonidas Polk had evacuated Columbus, Kentucky. On the 3rd Union Naval Officer Samuel Du Pont reported that his force had taken over Cumberland Island and Sound, Amelia, and St. Mary’s near Georgia’s southern border. On that day Union General John Pope led an assault on New Madrid, Missouri while US troops were occupying Columbus, Kentucky. General Halleck, who resented Grant’s fame, alleged his drunkenness and replaced him with General C. F. Smith.
      Lincoln proposed the following resolution:

Resolved, that the United States ought to cooperate
with any State which may adopt gradual abolishment of slavery,
giving to such State pecuniary aid,
to be used by such State in its discretion,
to compensate for the inconveniences, public and private,
produced by such change of system.3

His cabinet approved it on March 5. The next day Lincoln showed it to Senator Sumner before its presentation to the US Congress. Lincoln had approved the speech Carl Schurz gave at Cooper Union in New York on March 6, and at the end Greeley read a telegram from Washington about the President’s speech to Congress that filled the abolitionists with joy. Several major newspapers gave it their support, though Rep. Thaddeus Stevens and some other abolitionists were critical. The House passed the resolution 97-36 on March 11 followed by the Senate’s vote 32-10 on April 2, and Lincoln signed it on the 10th. Politicians in the remaining slave states on the border had not supported the plan.
      In the battle at Pea Ridge on the Arkansas northern border a Union force of 10,500 men led by General Samuel R. Curtis on March 8 defeated 16,500 Confederates who lost about 2,000 men while the Federals had 1,384 casualties.
      On that day the ironclad CSS Virginia, a 3,200-ton frigate with 40 guns which had been built from the lower hull and engines of the USS Merrimack, destroyed several wooden Union ships near Hampton Roads, Virginia. The next day the ironclad USS Monitor fought the USS Virginia for four hours. Captain John A. Dahlgren observed that the “reign of iron” had begun because they would replace wooden ships.
      William Quantrill left a Confederate army in 1861 to form his own gang of guerrillas, and they attacked Aubry, Kansas on March 7, and on the 11th they supported Confederate forces in an attack on Independence, Missouri.
      As General Joseph E. Johnston began moving his Confederate troops south, Union General McClellan returned his army to Alexandria, Virginia. On March 11 Lincoln relieved him from being General-in-Chief, though McClellan was still commander of the Army of the Potomac. The President also put General Halleck in command of the Mississippi Department and in between them General Frémont in charge of the new Mountain Department. Lincoln ordered all of the Department commanders to report to Secretary of War Stanton. On that day Stanton informed Lincoln that their military had 672,878 men, nearly 200,000 more than they had previously estimated. President Davis removed his generals Floyd and Pillow on March 11.
      On March 12 Union troops from the USS Ottawa occupied Jacksonville, Florida while Federal forces took over Winchester, Virginia after the retreat of Jackson’s Confederates. On the 13th the US Congress added an article of war barring officers from returning fugitive slaves to their owners. On the rainy 14th General Burnside’s Union Army of 11,000 men drove 4,000 Confederate soldiers out of New Bern, North Carolina. General C. F. Smith injured his leg getting into a boat, and on March 15 General Halleck restored Grant’s command in Tennessee. Halleck commanded the armies of the generals Grant, Don Carlos Buell, and John Pope with a total of 100,000 troops. By the 14th Grant’s army reached Savannah, Tennessee. On March 17 General McClellan left Alexandria with 121,500 men in 400 ships with 15,000 horses, 1,150 wagons, and 300 cannons.
      On March 14 President Davis vetoed a bill to appoint one general to command all Confederate armies, and on the 18th he transferred War Secretary Judah Benjamin to Secretary of State and made George W. Randolph the former. At Kernstown and Winchester on March 23 Stonewall Jackson led about 3,500 men against a Union force of about 7,500, and he had fewer killed or wounded but lost 263 captured or missing in a tactical loss in the short term; but it caused the Washington government to send 60,000 men to pursue him. Also on the 23rd the Federals besieged Fort Macon near Beaufort, North Carolina. By the next day CSA General Sidney Johnston had moved his troops from Murfreesboro to Corinth, Mississippi.
      On March 29 near the small town of Middleburg in the Shenandoah Valley a Union army for the first time used a machine gun to devastate a squadron of cavalry who quickly fled. Some of the guns were found to be inefficient and unsafe, and they would not be used much in this war even after Richard Gatling got a patent in November.
      In April the Union Army had 637,126 men compared to 410,395 Confederates. On April 2 General McClellan went by steamer, and Union warships from the James River began bombarding Yorktown that would continue for a month until the Confederates left the city. Lincoln was concerned that only 20,000 troops were guarding Washington, and he had General McDowell retain a corps there with 35,000 men. Nathaniel Banks had a Union Army of 23,000 in the Shenandoah Valley.
      Confederate General Magruder had only 20,000 men on the York Peninsula, but he fooled the enemy by marching his troops in a circle inside the fort that could only be seen by a small gap. This and McClellan’s reluctance to fight allowed time for General Joe Johnston to march his 42,860 effective troops there.
      On April 5 the Military Governor Andrew Johnson dismissed the mayor and city officials in Nashville for refusing to swear allegiance to the Union.
      The Confederate Army had 40,335 men at Shiloh, and they were attacking forces there near Pittsburg Landing in Tennessee before Union officers took notice. On April 6 Grant’s army attacked Pittsburgh Landing, and General Sidney Johnston was wounded in the leg and quickly bled to death; he was replaced by General Beauregard. The Confederates had the advantage of surprise because Union reconnaissance had been negligent; but then they were pushed back, and Beauregard ordered a retreat. On April 7 General Grant ordered 44,895 troops to attack about 20,000 remaining Confederates. His six Union divisions were commanded by the generals McClernand, W. H. L. Wallace, Lew Wallace, Stephen Hurlbut, William T. Sherman, and Benjamin Prentiss. About half of General Buell’s 35,000 slow-marching troops arrived too late for that battle. The next day Col. Nathan Bedford Forrest led a cavalry charge and was seriously wounded but escaped. Shiloh was the first devastating battle of the war in which each side had more than 1,700 men killed and over 8,000 wounded. Yet the victorious Union Army had 2,885 captured or missing compared to only 959 Confederates. They lost because they retreated and failed to stop the Union advance.
      On April 8 about 23,000 Union forces led by General John Pope and naval officer Foote took over the strategic Island No. 10 in the Mississippi River, gaining four steamers and tons of munitions as all 7,000 Confederates surrendered.
      On April 7 Secretary of State Seward and British minister Lyons in Washington had signed the Treaty for the Suppression of the Slave Trade which the US Senate ratified on April 25. The navies of both nations would be used to seize merchant ships carrying captured Africans.
      On April 11 Fort Pulaski in Georgia surrendered, and the port of Savannah was lost to the South for the duration of the war. Lincoln signed the bill that abolished slavery in the District of Columbia on April 16 that provided up to $300 compensation to their former owners and $100 for each black who chose to emigrate to Haiti or Liberia. In 1862 the US Congress appropriated $500,000 to colonize slaves and exchange ambassadors with Haiti and Liberia which the United States recognized as independent. Plantation owner Bernard Kock led a colonization effort with 500 blacks, and they arrived at Cow Island, Haiti on 13 April 1863 with some infected with small pox. The effort failed, and on December 22 Lincoln sent a ship to bring back the remaining 453 people.
      General Robert E. Lee persuaded President Davis to end the bounty policy and enact the first conscription law in American history. On April 16 the Confederate Congress voted 53-26 in the House and 19-5 in the Senate to conscript all white men between the ages of 18 and 35 to serve in the military with no exemptions except that draftees could hire a substitute from immigrants and others “not liable for duty.” Some substitutes deserted, and others sold themselves again. Before this policy was ended in December 1863, the price for a substitute had risen to $6,000. On April 21 the Richmond government listed exemptions for state officials, railroad and river workers, telegraph operators, miners and other industrial workers, hospital staff, clergy, druggists, and teachers. Georgia’s Governor Brown and North Carolina’s Governor Vance added so many civil servants that those states accounted for 92% of the exemptions in all states. Those already enlisted would have to serve for three years but could elect their own officers. In October the Confederacy would exempt from the military draft Quakers, Nazarenes, Mennonites, and Dunkards, but they would have to hire a substitute or pay a tax of $500.
      By April 1862 the Confederate Congress had authorized a total of $220 million in treasury notes. In its first year nearly a quarter of their revenue was from these notes while three-quarters was from printing money with less than 2% coming from taxes. By the end of 1862 it took $7 in Confederate money to buy what $1 could two years before. Salt was needed to preserve meat and had come mostly from the North, and the price rose from $2 a pound before the war to $60 in some areas by the fall of 1862. General John Winder enforced martial law in Richmond, and in April he set maximum prices for several kinds of food. This caused farmers and fishermen to stop selling their products, and three weeks later Winder ended the controls which led to prices that more than doubled.
      On April 18 the US Congress passed a bill authorizing medical inspectors who could institute reforms in the army. On the 24th Admiral David Farragut spearheaded the attack that took over Fort Jackson and Fort St. Philip and led on May 1 to General Benjamin Butler and his army taking control of New Orleans. He allowed profiteers to make fortunes by charging extremely high prices on such items as turpentine and flour. On the 10th he seized $80,000 in gold from the Netherlands Consulate. New Orleans had 145,000 people and a rich cultural heritage. On the 15th Butler responded to complaints that women were insulting his soldiers by decreeing that they were to be regarded as “plying their avocation,” and the next day he took over the offices of two local newspapers. Captain Henry W. Morris had raised a US flag over the mint on April 26, and William B, Mumford was injured while removing it with a group. They were cheered as he took it to the Mayor. General Butler heard about it three days later, and he had Mumford arrested. A military tribunal convicted him of a high crime on May 30, and by Butler’s order Mumford was hanged on June 7.
      General Lee asked General Halleck how a man could be executed for an action before the Union occupied New Orleans, and President Davis proclaimed Butler a criminal deserving hanging. Butler had pools of stagnant water filled in with dirt and sand in New Orleans which prevented the usual summer epidemic of yellow fever caused by mosquitoes. He also confiscated the church bells that had been donated to be made into cannons, and he shipped them to Boston where they were sold by auction on July 30. A sack of salt bought in New Orleans for $1.25 could be sold for $60 or more in Confederate states. General Butler’s brother Andrew may have made as much as $2 million.
      Confederate forces withdrew from Yorktown on May 3, and the next day McClellan’s Army of the Potomac marched into it and then moved toward Williamsburg. On the 5th President Lincoln went with Chase and Stanton on the Miami steamer to Fort Monroe, and the next day Lincoln directed gunboat attacks on Sewell’s Point by the James River. They watched as the USS Monitor clashed briefly with the CSS Virginia ironclad again. Herman Melville wrote, “War yet shall be, but warriors are now but operatives.” Also on the 5th General McClellan had an army of 40,768 following Joseph Johnston’s retreating force of 31,823 men at Williamsburg. Union General Joseph Hooker with his division attacked the Confederate rearguard at Fort Magruder. General James Longstreet and D. H. Hill counterattacked with the Confederate Army but then withdrew toward Richmond. The Union Army suffered more casualties; but that night the rebels resumed their retreat, and McClellan claimed it was a “brilliant victory.”
      On May 8 Stonewall Jackson’s army suffered twice as many casualties in a battle near McDowell, Virginia against a comparable Union force which retreated that night. The next day Lincoln learned that Norfolk was being evacuated, and he ordered General Wool to occupy the naval base. Before leaving Norfolk on May 10 the Confederates destroyed the Navy Yard. As New Orleans had been taken, Confederates did the same at Pensacola. On the 11th they destroyed the CSS Virginia in the James River so that it would not be used by Union forces. The next day Farragut’s fleet took over Natchez, Mississippi as tobacco traders tried to sell their goods to foreigners there. On the 18th Vicksburg refused to surrender, and the next day a Union assault failed with many more Union losses. After bombardment on May 22 General Sherman led 150 volunteers who also were driven back. Thus a long siege began, and by the end of June the Confederacy had 10,000 soldiers in Vicksburg.
      General David Hunter had ordered slaves emancipated in Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina on May 9, but the US Congress and Lincoln reversed this on May 19. The next day Lincoln signed the Homestead Act that provided 160 acres of public land to settlers who improved it for five years, and many veterans would settle in the West.
      In the battle of Front Royal in the Shenandoah Valley on May 23 about 3,000 Confederates led by Stonewall Jackson defeated a much smaller Union force and captured 691 men. General Richard Ewell’s brigade of 8,000 men increased Jackson’s army to 17,000. On May 24 Lincoln ordered General McDowell to send 20,000 troops while Frémont was to block Jackson’s retreat. On the 25th Jackson led 16,000 men who defeated 6,500 under General Banks at Winchester. The numbers killed and wounded on each side were similar, but the Union force had 1,714 men missing and left behind 9,000 rifles, 500,000 rounds of ammunition, artillery, cattle, and wagons of food supplies.
      General Halleck had arrived at Pittsburg Landing on April 11 and relieved Grant of field command, replacing him with General George Henry Thomas effective on the 25th. Halleck spent three weeks organizing his army, and in early May he began moving them toward the railroad junction at Corinth on the northern border of Mississippi 24 miles away. He was commanding the movement of a large army of about 10,000 men that covered 15 miles in the first two days but took 24 days to complete the last six miles. Fearing an attack, Halleck insisted the soldiers spend four hours each day digging trenches. On April 29 Halleck designated Grant as second in command, and they prepared for a battle on May 30. The next day they discovered that General Beauregard had removed his outnumbered Confederates by railroad at night. Grant did not like being under Halleck and was packing to leave, but Sherman persuaded him to stay just as Grant had revived Sherman’s spirits after the Shiloh battle. After the war ended, Sherman said,

General Grant is a great general. I know him well.
He stood by me when I was crazy,
and I stood by him when he was drunk;
and now, sir, we stand by each other always.4

      General Joe Johnston had begun evacuating Yorktown on May 2, and in the next two weeks he moved his army closer to Richmond. On May 31 during a rainstorm Johnston’s army of 39,000 men attacked McClellan’s force of 34,000 at Seven Pines near Richmond that bloodied both sides with a total of 1,770 killed, 8,343 wounded, and 1,051 captured or missing. Johnston was badly wounded, and neither side won that battle. Union General Oliver Howard was wounded twice and had his right arm amputated. Sharpshooters targeted officers who were more likely to be killed in this war than privates.

US Civil War June-July 1862

      On June 1 the Confederate States President Jefferson Davis put General Robert E. Lee in command of the Army of Northern Virginia. Confederates evacuated Fort Pillow on June 4, and two days later the Union forces occupied Memphis. In the next month more than 8,000 bales of cotton were sold, and General Sherman complained that cotton was sold for gold that went to Nassau in the Bahamas to purchase guns and ammunition for the Confederacy. Yet some plantation owners along the river from Memphis to Yazoo City burned their stores of cotton. The Union now controlled the Mississippi River north of Vicksburg.
      On June 5 President Lincoln signed the bill authorizing United States diplomats to go to Haiti and Liberia. Southerners afraid that they would send black ministers to Washington had previously prevented this recognition of the two Negro republics.
      The Congressman Samuel C. Cox of Ohio was influenced by the ideas of Emer de Vattel that a civil war should be a civilized war. Cox said in the House of Representatives,

It was urged to soften the horrors of war,
to save mankind from cruel and unjust violence,
to limit war and its horrors to the combatants,
to reduce the conflict to a duello between armies,
and to save the sea, as the land was already saved by law,
from being the theatre of cruel,
predatory, and barbarous practices.
The reason urged for this doctrine is that
it enables men to make peace, lasting and fraternal,
unembittered by cruelties to helpless women and children,
to non-combatants, and men of productive industry
and peaceful occupations in private life.
It is the doctrine of the Saviour of mankind.5

      A Union force bombarded Chattanooga, Tennessee on June 7 and 8. The next day General Richard Ewell’s force of 5,800 Confederates decisively defeated 11,500 soldiers led by General Frémont while losing less than half as many men. On June 10 General Halleck ordered General Buell’s Army of the Ohio to repair the railroad from Memphis to Chattanooga; General Grant was put back in command of the Army of the Tennessee; and General John Pope’s Army of the Mississippi was to defend the rail junction at Corinth. On the 17th Frémont declined to serve under Pope and resigned, ending his military career.
      On June 9 Stonewall Jackson was victorious again in Virginia at Port Republic. General Lee told J. E. B. Stuart that he wanted a reconnaissance of the nearby Union Army. Stuart selected 1,200 men, and starting early on June 12 he led his cavalry in a large circle around the Union Army of the Potomac before returning to Richmond on the 15th.
      Confederate General Beauregard was ill and frustrated, and on June 17 he left the army. President Davis replaced him with General Braxton Bragg, an old friend of General Sherman. That day a force of eight Union ships bombarded St. Charles in Arkansas and took control of the White River. Lincoln on June 19 signed the bill prohibiting slavery in United States Territories.
      On June 25 General McClellan wired War Secretary Stanton that the rebels had a force of 200,000 men; but actually McClellan’s army had 114,691 men against Lee’s 92,000 Confederates. On that day a skirmish near Seven Pines caused about 500 casualties on each side that began the Seven Days’ Battle near Richmond, the largest US battle so far. On the 26th Jackson’s force was tired and late while General A. P. Hill’s Confederate force of 11,000 men attacked 15,631 Federals near Mechanicsville and suffered 1,484 casualties; but it disrupted McClellan’s siege. McClellan then sent Fitz-John Porter with 6,000 men across the Chickahominy River into a bloody battle while 69,000 Union troops did not engage for two days; about 15,500 were lost. On June 27 at Gaines’ Mill 34,214 Union troops attacked Lee’s army of 57,018 and killed and wounded many more Confederates, but they lost 2,835 men captured or missing compared to only 108 missing Confederates.
      On June 28 McClellan ordered his army to retreat to Harrison Landing by the James River. Magruder’s force of about 14,000 men followed them and attacked 26,600 Union soldiers led by General Edwin Sumner at Savage’s Station on Sunday the 29th. The Union Army left behind 2,500 sick and wounded. Lincoln, Seward, and Stanton in Washington agreed that McClellan would “probably be in Richmond within two days.” On June 30 Lee’s army tried to attack across a swamp, and the Union army led by General Fitz Porter counter-attacked and occupied Malvern Hill. Jackson’s force had arrived late again. McClellan and his force withdrew to Harrison’s Landing where he boarded the ironclad USS Galena. Lee had his army attack Malvern Hill on July 1; but the Union artillery and rifles and the Federal gunboats firing from the James River were too much for them. The next day McClellan’s army retreated to Harrison’s Landing where they were protected by more gunboats.
      Lee ended the Seven Day Battle in which the South lost 3,494 killed, 15,758 wounded, and 952 captured or missing. The Union had 1,734 dead, 8,062 wounded, and 6,053 taken or missing, and they lost the opportunity to use their stronger army to attack Richmond which could have led to an end of the war. General Philip Kearny considered McClellan’s order to retreat “cowardice or treason.” McClellan had excelled at training troops; but he not only gave excuses often for not acting based on erroneous estimates of opposing forces, he also had political views contrary to the governing Republican Party. On July 10 he wrote to his wife, “If I had succeeded in taking Richmond now the fanatics of the North might have been so powerful & reunion impossible.”6
      After the financial panic of 1857 during the depression the Federal Government had a deficit in the next four years. Treasury Secretary Chase raised money from bank loans at 7.3% interest, and this interest cost $60 million a year. On April 8 the House Ways and Means Chairman Thaddeus Stevens had reported that the national debt would pass $800 million before July 1 because the current expenditures were over $3 million per day. He stated that if the debt did not surpass $1,200 million, in the future revived commerce would create an annual surplus of $50 million to reduce the debt.
      On July 1 the US Congress passed the Internal Revenue Act which imposed taxes on luxuries such as liquor, tobacco, playing cards, carriages, yachts, and jewelry. The income tax exempted the first $600 and then levied 3% up to $10,000 and 5% on income beyond that, and this bill would be enforced. Businesses were exempt on the first $600 for value-added taxes. Lincoln also signed the Pacific Railroad act that supported the Union Pacific Company and the Central Pacific Company in California, which were building it from Omaha to San Francisco, by granting them 6,400 acres per mile and loaned them $16,000 per mile on the plains, $32,000 in the foothills, and $48,000 in the mountains.
      Morrill’s Homestead Act passed on July 2 providing land grants to colleges for the benefit of agriculture and mechanical arts with 30,000 acres of land for each of the senators and representatives from each state. This enabled Iowa’s State Agricultural College and Model Farm to form in September and the Massachusetts Agriculture College to be founded at Amherst in 1863.
      On July 2 Lincoln called for 300,000 volunteers for three years with allotments for each state. Governors responded that that would be difficult, and a $25 payment was offered in advance of the usual $100 bounty at the honorable discharge. On the 5th the US Congress passed a bill to organize the Navy into the eight bureaus for Yards and Docks, Equipment and Recruiting, Navigation, Ordnance, Construction and Repairs, Steam Engineering, Provisions and Clothing, and Medicine and Surgery.
      General Lee put his soldiers to work strengthening fortifications around Richmond so that the capital could be defended with fewer troops, giving him more men for offensive warfare.
      Lincoln went to see General McClellan at Harrison Landing on July 7 and read an arrogant letter from McClellan suggesting a more conservative policy that would protect property including slaves. The President politely thanked him for the letter and put it in his pocket without commenting.
      On July 8 Lincoln signed the Morrill Anti-Bigamy Act which banned polygamy in US Territories, but no funds were provided for enforcement. Lincoln promised Brigham Young he would ignore the law in exchange for Mormons not getting involved in the Civil War. The Act was aimed at the Mormons by limiting the church’s authority to regulate marriages and the amount of property any religious organization could own in a territory.
      Confederate Col. John Hunt Morgan led the 2nd Cavalry of Kentucky that captured Tompkinsville on July 9, and they also raided Lebanon on the 12th and Newburg, Indiana on the 18th. On July 13 promoted General Nathan Forrest and his 1,400 cavalry captured 890 of 900 men in the Union garrison at Murfreesboro, Tennessee.
      On July 11 Lincoln wired the scholarly Halleck that he was promoted to General-in-Chief of US land forces. On the 14th the US Congress ended the daily supply of a pint of rum to each sailor that had been carried on from the British tradition.
      McClellan claimed that 34,500 men including sick and wounded were on leave; 16,000 present were sick; and 3,800 were absent without leave. After the disaster of the Peninsula campaign General John Pope was brought east to command the Union Army in Virginia. On July 14 he made a boastful speech, and then on the 18th he issued a set of orders directing the Army of the Potomac to subsist on the country by granting vouchers to be paid after the war to those who had been loyal; the cavalry was to get supplies locally instead of by train; and he warned that guerilla outrages would be punished with death. In Order No. 11 five days later he threatened to shoot any person who refused to swear allegiance to the Union or go to the South. President Davis announced that the CSA would retaliate with executions, and this may have deterred Pope who did not have any guerrilla shot nor did he expel a civilian.
      The Confederate Commissioner John Slidell on July 16 offered France’s Napoleon III nearly a million bales of cotton and an alliance against the Juarez regime in Mexico if France would recognize the Confederate States and help them break the Union’s blockade; but Napoleon declined to do so. Two days later the Confederacy required passports for travel to prevent spies taking information to the North.
      Lincoln had met with Congressmen from border states on July 12 and urged them to accept gradual emancipation of slaves with compensation before pressure demanded it without that, but the next day they issued a manifesto rejecting his offer. The President told Seward and Welles that he was going to issue an Emancipation Proclamation because he considered it a military necessity for preserving the Union; but it would only go into effect in the slave states that were in rebellion.
      On July 17 the US Congress passed the Second Confiscation Act which declared that anyone captured from those in rebellion “shall be forever free of their servitude and not again be held as slaves.” Thus it authorized seizing property from disloyal citizens and emancipated slaves who had come under control by the Union Army which could employ them. Lincoln approved the portion that allowed using freed slaves in prosecuting the war. The Act also provided for the death penalty for treason or a sentence of 5 to 10 years and/or a fine of $10,000 up to $200,000. The US Congress also authorized the conscription of men between 18 and 45 for 9 months in the militia, but it was not implemented. They approved pensions up to their monthly pay for disabled veterans. The US War Department set the pay for Negro soldiers at $7 per month with $3 for clothing, though white soldiers received $13 a month and $3.50 for clothing.
      On July 22 Lincoln read to the cabinet his Emancipation Proclamation. Attorney General Bates, who had a brother fighting for the Confederacy, favored promulgating it immediately because he wanted to deport the freed slaves to Central America or Africa. Blair got permission to submit his objections. Caleb Smith also was opposed but said nothing. The abolitionist Chase warned that it would cause disorder and escalate insurrection; but he also had Presidential ambitions and did not want Lincoln getting ahead of him on the issue. He advised a more gradual approach, and Seward agreed with that and persuaded Lincoln to wait for a military victory so that it would not appear to be a desperate move. Lincoln decided to put it in a drawer until then.
      General William T. Sherman was put in command at Memphis on July 21. On the 22nd General John Schofield, who commanded a Missouri regiment, ordered a draft to fight bushwhackers and guerrillas such as Quantrill’s raiders who would be joined by Cole Younger and later the James brothers. Ivan Turchin of the Illinois 19th had fought in the Crimean War. He had his men live off the land and was called the “robber colonel.” General Benjamin Grierson had his men take 2,000 horses and mules to supply Sherman’s transportation requests.
      On July 23 General Henry Halleck assumed command of the Union Army in Washington where he was more effective than in the field. General Grant was put in command of the western army, and on July 31 Halleck instructed him to judge for himself the best use of his troops.
      The North was building ironclad ships and railroads must faster than the South. General Bragg left 16,000 men with General Van Dorn at Vicksburg and the same number with General Price at Tupelo. Then he transferred his army of about 31,000 men going 776 miles from Tupelo, Mississippi on July 23 by way of Mobile, Montgomery, and Atlanta to Chattanooga; they had to take six different railroads because local lines had different gauges or needed repair. Yet they arrived on July 29 while General Buell’s army was still in northern Alabama.
      Clara Barton had been raising medical supplies for the army and nursing men since the war began. Surgeon-General Hammond was so impressed by the work of the nurses that in July he ordered that at least one-third of the nurses in general hospitals must be women. Mary Ann Bickerdyke had been serving since June 1861, and during the war she helped establish 300 field hospitals. Jonathan Letterman was appointed the medical director for the Army of the Potomac in July 1862, and he formed the first trained ambulance corps that could now carry medical supplies. During the war 14% of Union soldiers would die of their wounds compared to 18% of Confederates. In the Civil War twice as many soldiers died of diseases than from battlefield action. During the first year many soldiers caught measles, mumps and other childhood maladies. Rural regiments were especially susceptible to these and smallpox and skin infection. The most prevalent and deadly diseases were dysentery (diarrhea), typhoid, and pneumonia. Soldiers camped near cities often got venereal diseases. The US administration ordered McClellan to move his army away from the Peninsula before the August heat arrived.
      War Secretary Stanton had arrested Union General Charles P. Stone on February 8, and he was held without a trial until his release on August 16. Lincoln on February 14 had ordered that many political prisoners could get amnesty or be paroled unless they were deemed dangerous by Stanton. A New York commission released many prisoners by May. On August 8 the US War Department imposed stringent rules for arrested draft evaders with sentences of 9 months. Stanton in late September ordered that provost-marshals be appointed in the states to provide tribunals. The editors Dennis Mahoney of the Dubuque Herald and Dana Sheward of the Fairfield Constitution and Union were arrested in Iowa and taken to the Old Capital prison. Manton Marble of the influential World, which had a circulation of 40,000, led the criticism of these arrests. An Indiana grand jury had reported on August 4 that the Knights of the Golden Circle had 15,000 such members in the state, and they voted 60 indictments for treason, conspiracy, and other crimes. The Knights had started in the South and now supported the Confederacy.

US Civil War August-October 1862

      Three planters in Liberty County, Georgia presented a petition to the CSA Congress on August 1 complaining that at least 20,000 slaves had escaped from the Georgia coast, and they estimated their value at between $12 million and $15 million. They asked if they could get protection under military law.
      On August 4 the US War Department called for 300,000 more men for 9-month militia duty, and Secretary Stanton announced that each 3-year volunteer beyond the allotment would count as four 9-month recruits. By the end of 1862 the Union had recruited 421,000 volunteers and 88,000 militiamen. Some men escaped to Canada to avoid the draft; others paid a doctor to certify they were disabled; and some enlisted to collect the bounty and then deserted. In Baltimore so many men left the area to avoid the Union draft that on August 8 the War Department issued orders to prevent that in all the northern states.
       Many Democrats opposed the war and criticized the escalation, and some Republicans started calling them “Copperheads.” President Lincoln blocked the forming of two regiments of Negroes in Indiana but suggested they be put to work as laborers. General Butler in New Orleans began collecting $341,916 in taxes from secessionists in order to help the poor.
      Confederate General John Breckinridge led a force of 2,600 men who attacked Baton Rouge, Louisiana; but they were fought off by 2,500 Union soldiers while their General Thomas Williams was killed. Then the Confederates fortified Port Hudson.
      On August 9 Stonewall Jackson’s army of 16,868 men defeated a Union force of 8,030 at Cedar Mountain, Virginia by killing 14 and wounding 1,445 while losing 231 dead and 1,107 injured. Morgan’s cavalry raided Gallatin, Tennessee on the 12th and took over the town.
      On August 11 General Bragg declared martial law in Atlanta, Georgia, and General Van Dorn did the same in some Mississippi counties; but on September 12 President Davis canceled proclamations of martial law by Confederate generals. Then Davis persuaded the Congress to renew his suspension of habeas corpus; but it was to expire like the last one 30 days after the next Congress met which would be in February 1863; and it only applied to crimes against the Confederacy.
      For the first time a US President met with black leaders in the White House on August 14. Lincoln implied that the white and black races would never get along, and he asked them to support his plan to colonize ex-slaves in Africa and Central America. Near the end of a fairly long speech he said, “I want you to let me know whether this can be done or not.”7 Yet this idea had long been rejected by most black leaders and abolitionists, and Negroes meeting at Newtown on Long Island replied to Lincoln. They rejoiced in their color but did not consider themselves a different race because “God has made of one blood all nations.” They asked, “Why should we leave this country?” They wrote that they love it and “have contributed our share to its prosperity and wealth.” They also believed that they have the same rights of “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” They concluded,

The speech of the President has only served
the cause of our enemies who wish to insult and mob us,
as we have, since its publication, been repeatedly insulted
and told that we must leave this country.
Hence we conclude that the policy of the President toward
the colored people of this country is a mistaken policy.8

      Treasury Secretary Chase said, “How much better would be a manly protest against prejudice against color!—and a wise effort to give free men homes in America!”9 Yet the latest confiscation act had provided $600,000 for colonization. Rejection by Honduras and Nicaragua ended the attempt to colonize Central America. In 1863 the US would send 453 blacks to an island near Haiti, but starvation and smallpox devastated the colony of 453, and the 364 survivors were brought back to the United States in 1864.
      On August 20 Horace Greeley published in the New York Tribune the editorial “The Prayer of Twenty Millions” supporting the emancipation of slaves, and two days later Lincoln replied that his goal was to save the Union and not to “save or destroy slavery.”
      In Minnesota the Santee Sioux were starving on a reservation, and Chief Little Crow led a revolt that began on August 18 with an attack on the Lower Sioux Agency. Soldiers from the 5th Minnesota Infantry at Fort Ridgley and the Renville Rangers fought the rebelling Santees on the 20th. In the fighting before most of the Dakotas surrendered on September 25 some 150 Sioux were killed along with about 600 white civilians and 77 soldiers. Hundreds of Indians were tried briefly from September 28 to November 3, and on the 10th they announced that 303 had been convicted of murder and rape and were sentenced to death. Henry Whipple, the Episcopal Bishop of Minnesota, asked Lincoln to be lenient; but the Minnesota Senator Morton Wilkinson and Governor Ramsey warned that public revenge would supplement a too limited official punishment. Lincoln reviewed the transcripts of the trial for a month and commuted the sentences of 265 Santees, and the other 38 were hanged on December 26.
      On August 21 Confederacy President Davis proclaimed the Union generals David Hunter and John Phelps felons for having enlisted slaves. When Phelps was ordered not to enroll former slaves in Louisiana, he resigned. General Butler began enlisting free blacks at New Orleans on August 22. That day General McClellan arrived with most of his army of over 100,000 men at Alexandria, Virginia. On the 25th the Union Army was authorized to recruit black soldiers on the South Carolina Sea Islands.
      The Second Battle at Bull Run (Manassas) began on August 26 when a Confederate wing of Jackson’s army attacked the Alexandria railroad at Bristoe Station and the next day captured the railroad depot at Manassas Junction. On the 28th Union forces attacked Jackson’s army near Brawner’s farm. The main engagement was in the next two days between Lee’s army of about 50,000 and about 77,000 men led by General Pope while Jackson’s brigades defended Stony Ridge. McClellan held back his army of 25,000 claiming he lacked artillery, cavalry, and transport. On the 30th Pope attacked Jackson’s army, but Longstreet led the Confederates who forced Pope’s army to retreat toward Centreville. In this battle Union casualties were about twice that of the Confederates because they had 4,263 men captured or missing while the rebels had none. The total number killed was 2,843 with 14,654 wounded. Clara Barton and other women helped nurse and provide food at the Armory Square Hospital. She even put fifty prisoners to work. The next day the Federals evacuated Frederick leaving behind many supplies.
      Also in August a mostly Irish mob set on fire a tobacco factory in Brooklyn that had many black employees who were mostly women and children.
      On September 1 near Chantilly in Fairfax County the 20,000 Confederates led by Jackson and Jeb Stuart inflicted more casualties on the 6,000 Union soldiers while both their generals, Philip Kearney and Isaac Stevens, were killed. The next day over the objections of Stanton and Chase, Lincoln removed Pope from command and returned the armies of northern Virginia to McClellan. Federal forces evacuated Winchester leaving much ordnance behind. General Pope was put in command of the new Department of the Northwest and was sent to Minnesota to deal with the Sioux rebellion. McClellan had supplies and equipment destroyed at Aquia before he moved his army to Washington.
      The Confederate army of 6,500 men led by General Kirby Smith had defeated the Union Army of Kentucky near Richmond capturing more than 4,300 soldiers on August 30. On September 2 they occupied Lexington, Kentucky, and the next day they entered the capital at Frankfort.
      On September 4 General Lee’s army crossed the Potomac River into Maryland while Union forces evacuated Frederick which did not welcome the troops of Jackson on the 6th. Some southerners had refused to invade the North, and others did not do so because of illness or poor equipment. On September 9 Lee issued his Special Order 191 describing his campaign strategy, but a copy was found by a Union soldier four days later and was given to McClellan. A large Confederate army led by General W. W. Loring took over Charleston in western Virginia after the Union garrison fled. Stonewall Jackson left Frederick to McClellan’s army but took over Harpers Ferry on September 15.
      In Chicago on September 7 Christians of all denominations had adopted a memorial favoring national emancipation for President Lincoln, and he replied on September 13 and near the end he wrote,

The people know that nothing else
has put constitutional government in danger but slavery;
that the toleration of that aristocratic and despotic element
among our free institutions was the inconsistency
that had nearly wrought our ruin and caused free government
to appear a failure before the world,
and therefore the people demand emancipation
to preserve and perpetuate constitutional government.10

      The Confederate army in Kentucky accepted the surrender of more than 4,000 Union troops at Munfordville on September 17. On the 14th General Sterling Price with 15,000 troops had driven out the Union brigade of 2,000 men at Iuka, Mississippi, but on the 19th General William Rosecrans led a Union force of about 4,500 who defeated 3,179 Confederates led by Price near Iuka.
      On the evening of September 16 General McClellan with an army of 87,165 sent a force led by General Joseph Hooker across Antietam Creek near Sharpsburg, Maryland. In the major battle the next day General Lee’s army engaged with about 38,000 men, and a total of 3,675 were killed as 17,292 men were wounded. After the battle Lee’s army retreated south across the Potomac. McClellan had 30,000 soldiers who did not fight in the battle, but he did not order pursuit of the fleeing Confederates. Thus on September 20 Lee’s army was able to cross the Potomac without more losses.
      The strategic victory at Antietam was enough for President Lincoln on September 22 to issue his preliminary Emancipation Proclamation that declared the slaves would be free in the Confederate states which did not rejoin the United States by the end of the year.
      On September 24 in addition to suspending the writ of habeas corpus for those arrested, Lincoln ordered that

all Rebels and Insurgents,
their aiders and abettors within the United States,
and all persons discouraging volunteer enlistments,
resisting militia drafts, or guilty of any disloyal practice,
affording aid and comfort to Rebels
against the authority of the United States,
shall be subject to martial law and liable to trial
and punishment by Courts Martial or Military Commission.11

On September 24 Lincoln aggravated his political problems by declaring that habeas corpus would be denied to those who discourage enlistment, resist the draft, or engage in “any disloyal practice.”
      On September 26 McClellan told Halleck that his army was in no condition to fight unless Lee made a major mistake. On that day Lincoln summoned Major John J. Key, whose brother was on McClellan’s staff, and he confirmed that being asked why they had not captured Lee’s army at Sharpsburg, Key had said,

That is not the game; the object is that
neither army shall get much advantage of the other;
that both shall be kept in the field till they are exhausted,
when we will make a compromise and save slavery.”12

Then Lincoln ordered Key dismissed from the Army.
      In New Orleans free Negroes formed the First Regiment Louisiana Native Guards on September 27. On that day the Confederacy raised the conscription age limit from 35 to 45.
      Mathew Brady was improving the art of black-and-white photography, and in October thousands of people lined up in New York City to see his exhibition of “The Dead of Antietam.”
      On October 3 General McClellan demonstrated the Army of the Potomac with parades for President Lincoln who called it “McClellan’s bodyguard.” That day another battle began near Corinth, Mississippi in which about 23,000 Union forces led by General Rosecrans defeated the 22,000 Confederates led by the generals Earl Van Dorn and Sterling Price who suffered greater casualties and had many more captured. The armies of Van Dorn and Sterling managed to escape from a force General Grant sent that attacked them on the 5th by Hatchie River in Tennessee.
      On October 6 Lincoln sent a message to General Halleck directing his army to cross the Potomac River and drive the enemy south. At Perryville on October 8 General Buell’s army of 55,000 engaged about 22,000 men and defeated 16,000 Confederates led by generals Bragg and Leonidas Polk in the biggest battle fought in Kentucky in which 955 were killed, and 5,486 were wounded.
      In elections in the Midwest on October 14 the Democrats did well except in Iowa which was dominated by Republicans. On the 19th Morgan’s raiders defeated Union cavalry and entered Lexington, Kentucky to capture the garrison and parole prisoners before leaving.
      McClellan had complained that many troops had no shoes, and Lincoln had 95,000 pairs delivered in October. On the 24th the Lincoln administration replaced General Buell with Rosecrans. After months of pleading by Lincoln, General McClellan finally on October 26 ordered the Union Army of the Potomac to start crossing the Potomac River.
      Indiana had about 11,000 free blacks in 1860, and during the war many slaves fled north there and into Illinois and Ohio. Illinois had counted 7,628 Negroes, and the Union taking of Donelson and Nashville brought slaves seeking refuge especially to Cairo.
      The suspension of habeas corpus and arbitrary arrests since mid-1861 became an election issue helping Democrats. The Confederate invasion of Kentucky in the spring of 1862 led to 34 citizens being indicted in Bourbon County and 205 people in Fayette County later in the year. Henry Bellows headed the New York Sanitary Commission, and he investigated New York jails and found scores of prisoners in miserable conditions without beds and common necessities. In Washington the Old Capital jail held black refugees, blockade runners, and other prisoners and by summer had 600 Confederates.
      In October elections Pennsylvania elected an equal number of Democrats and Republicans; but in Ohio Democrats won 14 of 19 congressional races while Indiana Democrats took 7 of 11. The Cincinnati Commercial condemned the Democrats for inflaming racial prejudice. By October the Union’s expenses for the war had reached about $1,000,000,000.

US Civil War November-December 1862

      On November 4 in the New York election for governor the Democrat Horatio Seymour defeated the Republican General James Wadsworth. The New York State Assembly became even with 64 Democrats and 64 Republicans, but Republicans still dominated the Senate 23-8. New Jersey also elected a Democratic governor, and Democrats won 4 of 5 House seats. Democrats even in Illinois won 9 of 14. The Democrats gained 27 seats in the House giving them 72 to 85 Republicans and 25 Unionists. More than 1,000 troops went to Delaware to guard the polls as they chose a Democrat House member. Maryland and Kentucky did not have elections. Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation helped the Republicans retain their advantage in New England states as well as in northern Ohio and Michigan.
      Confederates on November 4 evacuated Hamilton, North Carolina as Union troops took over the town. The next day Lincoln finally decided to replace General McClellan with General Ambrose Burnside while General Hooker replaced General Porter. Burnside had already turned down the job twice, but his emotional plea that he was unfit for the position did not put off Lincoln. Burnside took command on the 7th, and McClellan agreed to stay for two days to explain his plans for the army to Burnside. On the 10th McClellan said goodbye to his army of 120,000. Many were sorry to see him go, and almost all his staff officers resigned.
      General Butler on November 8 ordered all the distilleries and breweries in New Orleans closed, and Lincoln replaced him with General Banks on December 15.
      General Grant had informed the War Department on November 2 that he was moving his five divisions to Grand Junction, Tennessee, and Halleck supported that. On the 13th Grant’s army took over Holly Springs, Mississippi, and by early December they were in Oxford. General McClernand raised troops in Illinois and then persuaded Stanton and Lincoln to let him raise more in the Midwest for a force to move against Vicksburg under orders by General Halleck who told him to go to Memphis and report to Grant. Halleck allowed Grant to make his own decisions.
      General Burnside moved his army by the Rappahannock toward Fredericksburg, Virginia, but the city declined to surrender on November 21. On the 29th Admiral Du Pont reported that his ships needed 950 tons of coal each week, and the anthracite coal had to be transported from eastern Pennsylvania. On December 1 Navy Secretary Welles told Lincoln that the US Navy had 28,000 seamen on 427 ships armed with 1,577 guns that were used to blockade the entire southern coast.
      On December 1 Lincoln in his annual message to Congress proposed three amendments to the US Constitution. The first would give compensation to every state that abolished slavery before 1 January 1863. The second would free all slaves who had gained freedom during the war of rebellion with compensation for owners who were not disloyal. In the third the US Congress would provide money “for colonizing free colored persons, with their own consent, at any place or places without the United States.”13 Politicians told him that these would never pass. His message concluded with this paragraph:

Fellow-citizens, we can not escape history.
We of this Congress and this Administration
will be remembered in spite of ourselves.
No personal significance or insignificance
can spare one or another of us.
The fiery trial through which we pass will light us
down in honor or dishonor to the latest generation.
We say we are for the Union.
The world will not forget that we say this.
We know how to save the Union.
The world knows we do know how to save it.
We, even we here, hold the power and bear the responsibility.
In giving freedom to the slave we assure freedom to the free—
honorable alike in what we give and what we preserve.
We shall nobly save or meanly lose the last best hope of earth.
Other means may succeed; this could not fail.
The way is plain, peaceful, generous, just—
a way which if followed the world will forever applaud
and God must forever bless.14

      Unfortunately Lincoln’s way was a civil war against states that wanted to try things on their own. Yet many abolitionists, who were hated by most politicians, proposed nonresistance as the ethical means for eliminating slavery and were willing to allow secession as part of that nonviolent process. Some founding fathers such as Franklin and Jefferson believed that slavery would end in the future, and prior to the Civil War some in the South were realizing that slavery could not be perpetuated for long.
      On December 4 General Joseph E. Johnston became the commander of the Confederate forces in the West. On the 7th General Thomas Hindman led 11,059 Confederate soldiers in an attack at Prairie Grove near Fayetteville, Arkansas against 9,216 Union forces led by the generals Blunt and Herron who managed a strategic victory with slightly lower casualties as the Confederates withdrew while some deserted. On the same day Morgan’s cavalry lost only 139 men while capturing 1,844 Union soldiers and booty from the garrison at Hartsville, Tennessee.
      The US Congress admitted the state of West Virginia on December 10. While Burnside’s engineers and army were forming pontoon bridges by Fredericksburg, they were shot at from brick buildings. Then Burnside had 140 cannons destroy those buildings. The Union force crossed the bridges and entered Fredericksburg as the Confederates withdrew to the heights where Lee’s army was waiting in a very strong position. In the main battle on December 13 the Union Army of 122,009 had 1,284 killed, 9,600 wounded, and 1,769 captured or missing while the Confederate forces of 78,513 lost 608 dead and 4,116 wounded with 653 missing. Burnside’s officers persuaded him not to attempt another assault. The next day Burnside asked Lee for a truce, and the Union forces withdrew on the 15th. Burnside tried to block reporting by forbidding access to telegraph wires and by not letting reporters leave the scene of battle.
      General Grant had put Sherman in charge of the troops in Mississippi on December 8. On the 10th Nathan Forrest with 1,800 cavalry began harassing Grant’s troops in Tennessee, and on the 15th Forrest led 2,500 men who raided the Union troops around Vicksburg. He used his cavalry to tear up railroads to keep supplies from reaching the armies of Grant and Rosecrans, and by the time he withdrew at the end of the year they had inflicted 2,500 casualties on Union forces.
      Grant at Holly Spring, Mississippi felt harassed by cotton speculators and peddlers, and on December 17 he ordered Jews expelled from his department within 24 hours. The New York Times and other newspapers, which usually supported Grant, condemned this, and Lincoln and General Halleck rescinded this order on 4 January 1863; two days later Grant revoked the order.
      Republican Senators met on December 16 and 17; they favored Treasury Secretary Chase and decided to try to get Secretary of State Seward removed from the cabinet. Chase often quarreled with Seward. Lincoln met with the senators on the 19th, and the next day he embarrassed Chase into submitting his resignation. Seward had already offered to resign, but Lincoln kept them both.
      General Van Dorn on December 20 led a Confederate raid on Holly Springs that captured 1,500 Union soldiers; but while they burned supplies worth $1.5 million, he paroled them. Grant moved his army back to Grand Junction, Tennessee. On the 21st while Forrest was raiding Tennessee and Morgan was ravaging Kentucky, Jefferson Davis visited Vicksburg. On December 23 President Davis ordered that captured black soldiers were not to be treated as prisoners of war but were to be turned over to the authority of Confederate states.
      President Lincoln summoned General Burnside to Washington, and Lincoln and his wife visited hospitals in Washington on Christmas Day. General Sherman commanded the Army of Tennessee, and on December 29 his force of 30,720 men attacked 13,792 Confederates at Chickasaw Bayou near Vicksburg; but the Union forces suffered 1,776 casualties while the Confederates lost only 207 men. On the 31st and the next two days the Union army of 43,400 men led by General Rosecrans fought 35,000 Confederates under General Bragg by Stones River outside Murfreesboro, Tennessee. General Sheridan’s division fought bravely, and three brigade commanders were killed. Both sides had a total of 2,971 killed, 15,488 wounded, and 6,186 captured or missing. On January 3 Bragg began to withdraw his army toward Tullahoma, Tennessee, and the army of Rosecrans occupied Murfreesboro on the 5th.
      On December 31 the ironclad USS Monitor sank in a storm off Cape Hatteras. The USS Rhode Island saved 47 men, but 16 died. At the end of the year the US Army in Indiana was arresting about 400 deserters per week.
      Also in 1862 John D. Rockefeller invested $4,000 in his first oil refinery. An open-hearth steel furnace, which was invented by the German Friedrich Siemens in 1856, opened in New York City, the first in America.


1. The Annals of America, Volume 9, p. 325.
2. Ibid., p. 326-327.
3. Cong. Globe, 37th Cong., 2d Sess., 1102, 1103 quoted in The War for the Union Volume 2 by Allan Nevins, p. 31.
4. Impeached: The Trial of President Andrew Johnson and the Fight for Lincoln’s Legacy by David O. Stewart, p. 91.
5. Upon the Altar of the Nation: A Moral History of the American Civil War by Harry S. Stout, p. 278.
6. McClellan Letterbook quoted in Terrible Swift Sword by Bruce Catton, p. 346.
7. Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln, Vol. V, p. 375.
8. The Annals of America, Volume 9, p. 365.
9. Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era by James L. McPherson, p. 509.
10. Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln, Vol. V, p. 424.
11. Ibid., p. 437.
12. Terrible Swift Sword by Bruce Catton, p. 466.
13. Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln, Vol. V, p. 530.
14. Ibid., p. 537.

Copyright © 2020-2021 by Sanderson Beck

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