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hitherto been sanctioned by the law and practice of Chap. IV. nations, and send them to sea as fast as means and opportunity would allow. A long pivot-gun, or a couple of 8-inch columbiads, with a fighting crew, was armament enough for this purpose. Before the end of May several of these troublesome insects were on the wing, and not fewer than twenty prizes had been brought into New Orleans. From thirty to forty armed ships appear to have been fitted out in Confederate ports during the year, of which six or seven had been United States' revenue-cutters, and two or three had been slavers. Some sailed with letters of marque, but many, perhaps the greater number, were owned and commissioned by the Confederate Government. The most powerful was the paddle-wheel steamer Calhoun, of 1,058 tons, commanded by Captain Hollins, an officer of some repute in the United States' navy. The smallest, probably, was the tiny Savannah, of 54 tons, converted from a Charleston pilot-boat into a privateer. She ran out from Charleston early in June, and succeeded in making one prize; but, closing her career immediately afterwards by mistaking a Federal brig-of-war for a merchantman, was the first Confederate craft that fell into the hands of the enemy.
1 On the 1st May Mr. Seward wrote to Lord Lyons: "The so-called Confederate States have waged an insurrectionary war against this Government. They are buying, and even seizing, vessels in several places for the purpose of furnishing themselves with a naval force, and they are issuing letters of marque to privateers to be employed in preying upon the commerce of this country. You are aware that the President has proclaimed a blockade of the ports included within the insurgent States. All these circumstances are known to the world."-Mr. Seward to Lord Lyons, 1st May, 1861.
"When the Confederate authorities proposed to issue letters of marque but little attention was paid to it, under the supposition that they had neither the facilities to equip vessels, nor the power to break the blockade. The appearance of the vessels on the ocean soon dispelled such illusions, and the Powers of Europe were called upon immediately to define their policy."--American Annual Cyclopædia for 1861, p. 589.
The Jeff. Davis, a brig which had formerly been engaged in the slave trade, was more successful in her audacity. She ran northwards early in June, stood in towards shore as near as Nantucket Shoals, took many valuable prizes (one within 200 miles of New York), escaped capture, and in August ran aground and was lost in trying to cross the bar off a little port in Florida. The Sumter obtained greater celebrity, and her performances afford us an example of what may be done in this sort of warfare by a ship which has neither strength nor speed, but is in the hands of an officer of daring and resource. She was mentioned by Mr. Davis in his Message of the 29th April, 1861,1 as being then in preparation; her officers had been appointed to her on the 18th of that month; on the 18th June she was ready for sea, and on the 30th she steamed out of one of the passes of the Mississippi and ran away from the blockading war-steamer Brooklyn. She cruised for some time in the West India seas, and afterwards crossed the Atlantic, visiting successively Cienfuegos, Curaçoa, Puerto Cabello in Venezuela, Trinidad, Paramaribo in Dutch Guiana, Maranham in Brazil, Martinique, Cadiz, and Gibraltar, where she was sold, and afterwards came to Liverpool as a merchantman. She cruised for six months and captured seventeen prizes, and succeeded in spreading an alarm which, before November, had raised the rate of insurance on United States' ships. Like the Calhoun and Nashville, she never was a privateer,
1 "The operations of the Navy Department have been necessarily restricted by the fact that sufficient time has not yet elapsed for the purchase or construction of more than a limited number of vessels adapted for the public service. Two vessels have been purchased and manned, the Sumter and McRae, and are now being prepared for sea at New Orleans with all possible despatch. Contracts have also been made at that city with two different establishments for the casting of ordnance,-cannon, shot, and shell,-with the view to encourage the manufacture of these articles, so indispensable for our defence, at as many points within our territory as possible."
and, like them, was commanded by an officer who had Chap. IV. held rank in the navy of the United States.
The events of the war in America do not enter into the course of this narrative. I shall merely glance at them. Mr. Lincoln was not long in discovering that in his Proclamation of the 15th April he had taken a very inadequate measure of the resistance with which he had to deal. On the 4th May he issued a second call, asking for forty additional regiments of volunteers, making a maximum aggregate of 42,034 men, to serve for three years, and for 18,000 seamen. He gave
orders, at the same time, for an increase of the regular army by ten regiments and a maximum aggregate of 22,714 soldiers. "So patriotic and enthusiastic were the people in favour of preserving the Union that under this call 208 regiments had been accepted by July 1st. A number of other regiments were also accepted on condition of being mustered into service within a specified time." Thus by the 1st July the Government was computed to have at its command not less than 307,875 troops, of whom, however, 77,875 had enlisted for three months, and nearly completed their term of service. From 70,000 to 80,000 men, collected on the line of the Potomac, formed an army destined for the defence of the capital and the invasion of Virginia. But the raw levies which had flocked so fast to Washington needed training in the rudiments of soldiership; means of transport were required, and the other appliances for an army in the field; and during many weeks the Federal forces remained almost inactive within easy distance of the enemy. Towards the end of May, McDowell, under the orders of Scott, began to feel his way into Virginia, and occupied the town of Alexandria, eight miles from Washington, and on the verge of the Federal district; but two months more were
1 American Annual Cyclopædia for 1861, p. 27.
Chap. IV. suffered to elapse before he hazarded an advance. On the Upper Potomac, above Harper's Ferry, Patterson, in command of 20,000 troops, was opposed to the Confederate General Joseph Johnson, by whom he was greatly overmatched in military skill; and Butler, who had been sent by sea, with 15,000 men, to establish himself at Fortress Monroe and menace the surrounding country, had received on the 10th June, in attempting to penetrate inland, a sharp check from a Confederate force under Magruder. At length, on the 16th July, McDowell began to move. Advancing southwards, with an army which may be reckoned at about 35,000 men, he found the enemy strongly posted amidst broken ground, near a point where the southern and western railways intersect, and a line strikes off, through the hills, to the valley of the Shenandoah. Here he fought a pitched battle, sustained a severe defeat, and was driven back in disorder upon Washington.
After this disaster, the command of the army of the Potomac was transferred to General McClellan, who had distinguished himself by a smart and successful campaign in Western Virginia; but no second attempt was made, until the spring of 1862, to advance beyond a day's march from Washington. McClellan occupied himself in drilling and organizing an army which rose by the middle of October to 150,000, and by the end of the year to nearly 220,000 strong.
The coasts of North and South Carolina were visited by Federal squadrons, some forts destroyed, and a permanent lodgment effected at Port Royal; and in Kentucky and Missouri a desultory war was waged, extending over a wide surface, and bringing into the field on both sides forces which in the aggregate were considerable. This, in brief, is the military history of the remainder of the year, which saw, as it wore on, enormous and increasing bodies of combatants drawn
from the pursuits of industry to slaughter one another. Chap. IV. The Confederate troops in the field are reckoned to have exceeded 200,000 in August, and 290,000 at a later period. The total strength of the Federal armies on the 1st December was estimated by the War Department at upwards of 660,000 men.1
The revolt of the Confederate States has some characteristic features. We cannot fail to be struck by the celerity with which the revolted communities established a regular Government, the long interval which was suffered to elapse before any attempt was made to reconquer them, and the footing of equality on which
1 The following statement shows the demands made on the North and West up to May 1864:—
15.-Proclamation calling out Militia to the aggregate
number of 75,000.
3.-Call for 39 volunteer regiments of Infantry, and 1
regiment of Cavalry, with a minimum aggregate
July 22 & 25.-Congress authorizes enlistment of 500,000 Volunteers.
2-Call for 300,000 Volunteers.
August 4.-President orders a draft of 300,000 militia.
3. Conscription Act.
June 15. Call for 100,000 men for 6 months to repel the invasion of Maryland, West Virginia, Ohio, and Pennsylvania.
October 17.-Call for 300,000 men to serve for 3 years, or the war.
February 1.-Draft for 500,000 men for 3 years, or the war.
April 23.-25,000 one-hundred-day men tendered by Ohio, Indiana,