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ment for a change in the course of the San Antonio and El Paso mail, so as to send it by way of Forts Mason, Griffin, and Stockton, instead of by camps Hudson and Lancaster. This application requires immediate decision, but before final action can be had thereon it is desired to have some official information as to the report of the commission above referred to.
Accordingly, I have the honor to request that you will cause this department to be furnished,
as early as possible, with the information desired in the premises, and also with a copy of the report, if any has been made by the commission. Very respectfully, &c., &c., George W. Mclellan, Second Assistant Postmaster General. The Honorable the Secretary Op Wak.
Referred to the General of the army for report.
Edwin M. Stanton, Fereuary 3,1868. Secretary of War.
LETTERS, PAPERS, TESTIMONY, POLITICO-MILITARY ORDERS,
AND REPORT OF GENERAL GRANT.*
General Grant's Orders respecting Slaves,
Headquarters Dist. Of West Tennessee,
General Orders, No. 14.
I. General Order No. 3, series 1861, from headquarters department of the Missouri, is still in force and must be observed. The necessity of its strict enforcement is made apparent by the numerous applications from citizens for permissson to pass through the camps to look for fugitive slaves. In no case whatever will permission be granted to citizens for this purpose.
II. All slaves at Fort Donelsojl at the time of its capture, and all slaves within the line of military occupation that have been used by the enemy in building fortifications, or in any manner hostile to the Government, will be employed by the quartermaster's department for the benefit of the Government, and will under no circumstances be permitted to return to their masters.
III. It is made the duty of all officers of this command to see that all slaves above indicated are promptly delivered to the chief quartermaster of the district.
By order of Brig. Gen. U. S. Grant.
Jno. A. Rawlins, A. A. O.
Headquartees Dist. Of West Tennessee,
General Orders, No. 72.
Recent acts of Congress prohibit the army from returning fugitives from labor to their claimants, and authorize the employment of such persons in the service of the Government. The following orders are therefore published for the guidance of the army in this military district in this matter.
I. All fugitives thus employed must be registered, the names of the fugitives and claimants given, and must be borne upon morning reports of the command in which they are kept, showing how they are employed.
* For other papers of General Grant, see pages 67,68,120, 121,122.123 of the Manual of 1866, and 73, 74, and 78 of the Mannal of 1867; or 67, 68, 120, 121, 122, 123,199, 200, and 204 of the comhined Manuals.
II. Fugitive slaves may be employed as laborers in the quartermaster's, subsistence, and engineer departments, and wherever by such employment a soldier may be saved to the ranks. They may be employed as teamsters, as company cooks (not exceeding four to a company,) or as hospital attendants or nurses. Officers may employ them as private servants, in which latter case the fugitive will not be paid or rationed by theGovernment. Negroes not thus employed will be deemed unauthorized persons, and must be excluded from the camps.
III. Officers and soldiers are prohibited from enticing slaves to leave their masters. When it becomes necessary to employ this kind of labor, commanding officers of posts or troops must send details (always under the charge of a suitable non-commissioned officer) to press into service the slaves of disloyal persons to the number required. ,
IV. Citizens within the reach of any military station, known to be disloyal and dangerous, may be ordered away or arrested, and their crops and stocks taken for the benefit of the Government or the use of the army.
V. All property taken from rebel owners must be duly reported and used for the benefit of Government, and be issued to troops through the proper departments, and, when practicable, the act of taking should be avowed by the written certificate of the officer taking, to the owner or agent of such property.
•It is enjoined on all commanding officers to see that this order is strictly executed. The demoralization of troops consequent on being left to execute laws in their own way, without a proper head, must be avoided.
By order of Maj. Gen. D. S. Grant.
Jno. A. Rawlins, A. A. O.
Headquarters Depart, Of The Tennessee, Milliken's Bend, La., April 22, 1863.
General Orders, No. 25. [Extract.]
I. Corps, division, and post commandeie will afford all facilities for the completion of the negro regiments now organizing in this department. Commissaries will issue supplies and quartermasters will furnish stores on the same requisitions and returns as are required from other troops.
It is expected that all commanders will especially exert themselves in carrying out the policy of the administration, not only in organizing colored regiments and rendering them efficient, but also in removing prejudice against them. * *
By order of Maj. Gen. U. S. Grant.
Jno. A. Rawlins, A. A. O.
Headquarters Depart, Op The Tennessee,
General Orders, No. 51.
I. At all military posts in States within the department where slavery has been abolished by the proclamation of the President of the United States, camps will be established forsuch freed people.of color as are out of employment.
II. Commanders of posts or districts will detail suitable officers from the army as superintendents of such camps. It will be the duty of such superintendents to see that suitable rations are drawn from the subsistence department for such people as are confided to their care.
III. All such persons supported by the Government will be employed in every practicable way, so as to avoid, as far as possible, their becoming a burden upon the Government. They may be hired to planters, or other citizens, on proper assurances that the negroes so hired will not be run off beyond the military jurisdiction of the United States; they may be employed on any public works; in gathering crops from abandoned plantations; and generally in any manner local commanders may deem for the best interests of the Government, in compliance with law and the policy of the administration.
IV. It will be the duty of the provost mar. shal at every military post to see that every
negro within the jurisdiction of the military authority is employed by some white person, or is sent to the camps provided for freed people.
V. Citizens may make contracts with freed persons of color for their labor, giving wages per month in money, or employ families of them by the year on plantations, &c, feeding, clothing, and supporting the infirm as well as the able-bodied, and giving a portion—not less than one-twentieth—of the commercial part of their crops in payment for such service.
VI. Where the negroes are employed under this authority, the parties employing will register with the provost marshal their names, occupation, and residence, and the number of negroes employed. They will enter into such bonds as the provost marshal, with the approval of the local commander, may require, for the kind treatment and proper care of those employed, and as security against their being carried beyond the employer's jurisdiction.
VII. Nothing in this order is to be construed to embarrass the employment of such colored persons as may be required by the Government.
By order of Major General U. S. Grant,
T. S. Bowers, A.A.,i.O.
Headquarters Depart, Op The Tennessee,
General Orders, No. 53.
J. Hereafter, negroes will not be allowed in
or about the camps of white troops, except such as are properly employed and controlled.
II. They may be employed in the quartermaster's department, subsistence department, medical department, as hospital nurses and laundresses, in the engineer department as pioneers. As far as practicable, such as have been or may be rejected as recruits for colored regiments by the examining surgeon will be employed about hospitals and in pioneer corps.
III. In regiments and companies they may be employed as follows: One cook to each fifteen men. and one teamster to each wagon. Officers may employ them as servants, but not in greater number than they are entitled to commutation for.
IV. Commanders of regiments and detachments will see that all negroes in or about their respective camps, not employed as provided in this order, are collected and turned over to the provost marshal of the division, post, or army corps to which their regiment or detachment belongs.
V. Provost marshals will keep all negroes thus coming into their hands from straggling and wandering about until they can be put incbarge of the superintendent of the camp for colored people nearest them; and all negroes unemployed, in accordance with this or previous orders, not in and about camps of regiments and detachments, will be required to go into the camps established for negroes, and it is enjoined upon provost marshals to see that they do so.
VI. Recruiting for colored regiments in negro camps will be prohibited, except when special authority to do so is given.
VII. All able-bodied negro men who are found, ten days after publication of this order, without a certificate of the officer or person employing them, will be regarded as unemployed, and. may be pressed into service. Certificates given to negroes must show how, when, and by whom they are employed, and if as officers' servants, that the officer employing them has not a greater number than by law he is entitled to commutation for.
By order of Major General U. S. Grant.
Letter on Slavery and Reconstruction.
August 30, 1863. Hon. E. B. Washburne.
Dear Sir: * * * The people of the North need not quarrel over the institution of slavery. What Vice President Stephens acknowledges the corner-stone of the Confederacy is already knocked out. Slavery is already dead, and cannot be resurrected. It would take a standing army to maintain slavery in the South, if we were to make peace to-day, guaranteeing to the South all their former constitutional privileges. Ineverwas an abolitionist, not even what could be called anti-slavery; but I try to judge fairly and honestly, and it became patent to my mind early in the rebellion that the North and South could never live at peace with each other except as one nation, and that without slavery. As anxious as I am to see peace established, I would not, therefore, be willing to see any settlement until this question is forever iwuled. Your sincere friend,
U. S. Grant.
On being a Candidate for Political Office.
January 20, 1864. Hon. I. N. Morrts.
Dear Sir: Your letter of the 29th of December I did not receive until two days ago. I receive many such, but do not answer. Yours, however, is written in such a kindly spirit, and as you ask for an answer, confidentially, I will not withhold it. Allow me to say, however, that I am not a politician, never was, and hope never to be, and could not write a political letter. My only desire is to serve the country in her present trials. To do this efficiently it is necessary to have the confidence of the army and the people. I know no way to better secure this end than by a faithful performance of my duties. So long as I hold my present position, I do not believe that I have the right to criticize the policy or orders of those above me, or to give utterance to views of my own except to the authorities at Washington, through the General-in-Chief of the army. In this respect, I know I have proven myself a "good soldier."
In your letter you say that I have it in my power to be the next President. This is the last thing in the world I desire. I would regard such a consummation as being highly unfortunate for myself, if not for the country. Through Providence I have attained to more than I ever hoped, and with the position I now hold in the regular army, if allowed to retain it, will be more than satisfied. I certainly shall never shape a sentiment, or the expression of a thought, with a view of being candidate for office. I scarcely know the inducement that could be held out to me to accept office, and unhesitatingly say that I infinitelyprefer my present position to that of any civil office within the gift of the people.
This is a private letter to you, not intended for others to see or read, because I want to avoid being heard from by the public except through acts in the performance of my legitimate duties.
I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant, U. S. Grant.
On Results of "Peace on any Terms."
Headq'rs Aemies Op The United States, City Point, Va., August 16, 1864. Hon. E. B. Washrdene.
Dear Sir: I state to all citizens who visit me that all we want now to insure an early restoration of the Union, is a determined unity of sentiment North. The rebels have now in their ranks their last man. The little boys and old men are guarding prisons, guarding railroad bridges, and forming a good part of their garrisons for entrenched positions.
A man lost by them cannot be replaced. They have robbed alike the cradle and the grave to get their present force. Besides what they lose in frequent skirmishes and battles, they are now losing, from desertions and other causes at least one regiment per day. With this drain upon them the end is not far distant if we will only be true to ourselves. Their only hope now is in
a divided North. This might give them reinforcements from Tennessee, Kentucky, Maryland, and Missouri, while it would weaken us. With the draft quietly enforced, the enemy would become despondent and would make but little resistance.
I have no doubt but the enemy are exceedingly anxious to hold out until after the Presidential election. They have many hopes from its effects. They hope a counter revolution; they hope the election of a peace candidate; in fact, like Micawber, they hope for something to turn up. Our peace friends, if they expect peace from separation, are much mistaken. It would be but the beginning of war, with thousands of northern men joining the South, because of our disgracein allowing separation. To have "peace on any terms," the South would demand the restoration of their slaves already freed. They would demand indemnity for losses sustained, and they would demand a treaty which would make the North slave-hunters for the South. They would demand pay or the restoration of every slave escaping to the North.
Yours, truly, U. S. Graht.
On Filling the Armies.
We ought to have the whole number of men called for by the President in the shortest possible time. Prompt action in filling our armies will have more effect upon the enemy than a victory over them. They profess to believe, and make their men believe, there is such a party North in favor of recognizing southern independence, that the draft cannot be enforced. Let them be undeceived. Deserters come into our lines daily, who tell us that the men are nearly universally tired of the war, and that desertions would be much more frequent, but that they believe peace will be negotiated after the fall election.
The enforcement of the draft and prompt filling up of our armies will save the shedding of blood to an immense degree.
U. S. Grant, Lieutenant General.
On Protecting Colored Soldiers.
Headq'rs Armies Op The United States, October 29, 1864. General R. E. Lee, C. S. A.,
Commanding Army Northern Virginia.
General: Understanding from youT letter of the 19th that the colored prisoners who are employed at work in the trenches near Fort Giimer have been withdrawn, I have directed the withdrawal of the Confederate prisoners employed in the Dutch Gap canal.
I shall always regret the necessity of retaliating for wrongs done our soldiers; but regard it my duty to protect all persons received into the army of theunited States, regardless of color oi nationality. When acknowledged Boldiers of the Government are captured they must be treated as prisoners of war, or such treatment as they receive will be inflicted upon an equal number of prisoners held by us.
I have nothing to do with the discussion of the slavery question: therefore decline answering the arguments adduced to show the right to return to former owners such negroes as are captured from our army.
In answer to the question at the conclusion of your letter, I have to state that all prisoners of war falling into my hands shall receive the kindest treatment possible, consistent with securing them, unless I have good authority for believing any number of our men are being treated otherwise. Then, painful as it may be to me, I shall inflict like treatment on an equal number of Confederate prisoners.
Hoping that it may never become my duty to order.retaliation upon any man held as a prisoner of war, I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
U. S. Grant, Lieutenant General.
General Grant's Testimony before the Committee
on the Conduct of the War, on Exchange of
Prisoners, February 11, 1868.
Q. It is stated, upon what authority I do not know, that you are charged entirely with the exchange of prisoners. A. That is correct. And what is more, I have effected an arrangement for the exchange of prisoners, man for man and officer for officer, or his equivalent, according to the old cartel, until one or the other party nas exhausted the number they now hold. I get a great many letters daily from friends of prisoners in the South, every one of which I cause to be answered, telling them that this arrangement has been made, and that I suppose exchanges can be made at the rate of about 3,000 a week. The fact is, that I do not believe the South can deliver our prisoners to us as fast as that, on account of want of transportation qn their part. But just as fast as they can deliver our prisoners to us, I will receive them, and deliver their prisoners to them.
Q. There is no impediment in the way? A< No, sir; I will take the prisoners as fast as they! can deliver them. And, I would add, that after I have caused the letters to be answered, I refer the letters to Colonel Mulford, the commissioner of exchanges, so that he may effect special exchanges in those cases wherever he can do so. The Salisbury prisoners will be coming-right on. I myself saw Colonel Hatch, the assistant commissioner of exchanges on the part of the South, and he told me that the Salisbury and Danville prisoners would be coming on at once. He said that he could bring them on at the rate of 5,000 or 6,000 a week. But I do not believe he can do that. Their roads are now taxed to their utmost capacity for military purposes, and aro becoming less and less efficient every day. Many of the bridges are now down. I merely fixed, as a matter of judgment, that 3,000 a week will be as fast as they can deliver them.
Q. The fact is, that there is no impediment now in the way except the lack of transportation 1 A. That is all. There is no impediment on our side. I could deliver and receive every one of them in a very short time, if they will deliver those they hold. We have lost some two weeks lately on account of the ice in too river. Q. It b.a« been said that we refused to ex
change prisoners because we found ours starved, diseased, and unserviceable when we received them, and did not like to exchange sound men for such men? A. There never has been any such reason as that. That has been a reason for making exchanges. I will confess that if our men who are prisoners in the South were really well taken care of, suffering nothing except a little privation of liberty, then, in a military point of view, it would not be good policy for us to exchange, because every man they get back is forced right into the army at once, while that is not the case with our prisoners when we receive them. In fact, the half of our returned prisoners will never go into the army again, and none of them will until after they have had a furlough of thirty or sixty days. Still, the fact of their suffering as they do is a reason for making this exchange as rapidly as possible.
Q. And never has been a reason for not making the exchange? A. It never has. Exchanges having been suspended by reason of disagreement on the part of agents of exchange on both sides before I came in command of the armies of the United States, and it then being near the opening of the spring campaign, I did not deem it advisable or just to the men who had to fight our battles to reinforce the enemy with thirty or forty thousand disciplined troops at that time. An immediate resumption of exchanges would have had that effect without giving us corresponding benefits. The suffering said to exist among our prisoners South was a powerful argument against the course pursued, and so I felt it.
General Grant and the Proposed Mission to Mexico.
General Grant To Secretary Stanton. Headq'rs Armies Op The United States, Washington, October 27, 1866.
Your letter of this date, enclosing one from the President of the United States of the 26th instant, asking you to request me "to proceed to some point on our Mexican frontier most suitable and convenient for communication with our minister; or (if General Grant deems it best) to accompany him to his destination in Mexico, and to give him tne aid of his advice in carrying out the instructions of the Secretary of State," is received. Also, copy of instructions to Hon. Lewis D. Campbell, minister to Mexico, accompanying your letter, is received.
The same request was made of me one week ago to-day, verbally, to which I returned a written reply, copy of which is herewith enclosed.
On the 23d instant, the same request was renewed in cabinet meeting, where I was invited to be present, when I again declined respectfully as I could the mission tendered me, with reason*.
I now again beg most respectfully to decline the proposed mission for the following additional reasons, to wit:
Now, whilst the army is being reorganized, and troops distributed as fast as organized, my duties require me to keep within telegraphic communication of all the department commanders, and of this city, from which orders must emanate. Almost the entire frontier between the United States and Mexico is embraced in the departments commanded by Generals Sheridan and Hancock, the command of the latter being embraced in the military division under Lieutenant General Sherman, three officers in whom the entire country has unbounded confidence.
Either of these general officers can be instructed to accompany the American minister to the Mexican frontier, or the one can through whose command the minister may propose to pass in reaching his destination.
If it is desirable that our minister should communicate with me he can do so through the officer who may accompany him, with but very little delay beyond what would be experienced if I were to accompany him myself. I might add that I would not dare counsel the minister in any matter beyond stationing of troops on the United States soil, without the concurrence of the administration. That concurrence could be more speedily had with me here than if I were upon the frontier, The stationing of troops would be as fully within the control of the accompanying officer as it would of mine.
I sincerely hope I may be excused from undertaking a duty so foreign to my office and tastes as that contemplated.
U. S. Grant, General.
Hon. E. M. Stanton,
Secretary of War.
General Grant and the Baltimore Troubles of October, 1866.
1. 8eneeal Grant To President Johnson.
Headers Armies Op The United States, Washington, October 24, 1866. His Excellency A. Johnson,
President of the United States.
I have the honor to enclose to you the within report from General Canby, commander of this military department, upon the threatened violence in the city of Baltimore previous to the approaching elections. Upon receiving your verbal instructions of the 20th-instant, to look into the nature of the threatened difficulties in Baltimore, to ascertain what course should be pursued to prevent it, I gave General Canby, whose department embraces the State of Maryland, instructions, also verbal, to proceed to Baltimore in person, to ascertain as nearly as he could the cause which threatened to lead to riot and bloodshed. The report submitted is given in pursuance of these instructions.
Since the rendition of General Canby's report I had a long conversation with him, and also with Governor Svvann, of the State of Maryland. It is the opinion of General Canby and the statement of Governor Swann, that no danger of riot need be apprehended unless the latter should find it necessary to remove the present police commissioners of Baltimore from office and to appoint their successors. No action in this direction has been taken yet, nor will there be nntil Friday next, when the trial of the commissioners before the governor is set to take place. I cannot see the possible necessity for calling in the aid of the military in advance of even the cause, (the removal of said commissioners.) which is to induce riot.
The conviction is forced on my mind that no reason no\v exists for giving or promising the
military aid of the government to support the laws of Maryland. The tendency of giving such aid or promise would be to produce the very result intended to be averted. So far there seems to be merely a very bitter contest for political ascendancy in the State.
Military interference would be interpreted as giving aid to one of the factions, no matter how pure the intentions or how guarded and just the instructions. It is a contingency I hope never to see arise in this country, while I occupy the position of general-in-chief of the army, to have to send troops into a State, in full relations with the general government, on the eve of an election, to preserve the peace. If insurrection does come, the law provides the method of calling out forces to suppress it. No such condition seems to exist now. U. S. Grant, General.
October 25—The President asked for the number of troops at convenient stations; to which General Grant replied, on the 27th, giving them. November 1, President directed Secretary Stanton: "In view of the prevalence in various portions of the country of a revolutionary and turbulent disposition, which might at any moment assume insurrectionary proportions and lead to serious disorders, and of the duty of the government to be at all times prepared to act with decision and effect, this force is not deemed adequate for the protection and security of the seat of government. I therefore request that you will at once take such measures as will insure its safety, and thus discourage any attempt for its possession by insurgent or other illegal combinations."
November 2—The President gave Secretary Stanton this order:
Executive Mansion, Washington, D. C, November 2,1866.
Sir: There is ground to apprehend danger of an insurrection in Baltimore against the constituted authorities of the State of Maryland, on or about the day of the election soon to be held in that city, and that in such contingency the aid of the United States might be invoked under the acts of Congress which pertain to that subject. While I am averse to any military demonstration that would have a tendency to interfere with the free exercise of the elective franchise in Baltimore, or be construed into any interference in local questions, I feel great solicitude that, should an insurrection take place, the government should be prepared to meet and promptly put it down. I accordingly desire you to call General Grant's attention to the subject, leaving to bis own discretion and judgment the measures of preparation and precaution that should be adopted.
Very respectfully, yours,
Hon. Edwin M. Stanton,
Secretary of War.
Same day, General Grant sent this telegram to General Canby: General E. R. S. Canby,
Comm'g Depart, of Washington.
Enclosed I send you orders just received from the President of the United States. They fully explain themselves. As commander of the military department including the State of Mary