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particularly France and England, would of course have been of the greatest value to the South. It is said that Mr. Roebuck's motion in the House of Commons to recognize the Confederate States would have passed but for the timely news of Gettysburg. Certainly if it had, France would not bave been slow to follow. It is difficult to overestimate the disastrous effect such events would have had on the Northern cause.
Page 310. Belmont. Mr. August Belmont, of New York, Chairman of the Democratic National Committee from 1860 to 1872, although opposed to secession, still attributed the cause and the responsibility for the continuance of the war to the Republican Administration. He led his party in clamoring for peace and conciliation, especially in 1864, and bitterly opposed reconstruction.
Page 310. Vallandigham. Clement L. Vallandigham, of Dayton, Ohio, was the most conspicuous and noisy one of the Peace Democrats during the war.
His treasonable and seditious utterances finally led to his banishment to the South in May, 1863. Thence he repaired to Canada, where he remained while his party made him their candidate in the next gubernatorial campaign, in which he was ignominiously defeated.
Page 310. Woodses. This refers to the brothers Benjamin and Fernando Wood, prominent Democrats of New York city. The former was editor of the Daily News and a Representative in Congress. The latter was several times Mayor of New York, and for twelve years a Representative in Congress.
Page 311. Columbus. After the fall of Fort Donelson, Columbus, Kentucky, was no longer tenable, and Beauregard ordered General Polk to evacuate it. March 3, 1862, a scouting party of Illinois troops, finding the post deserted, occupied it, and when Sherman approached the next day he found the Union Alag flying over the town.
Page 311. Donelson. The capture of Fort Donelson, in Tennessee, February 16, 1862, by General Grant, was one of several Union successes in the West, whose value was almost entirely neutralized by McClellan's dilatory conduct of the Army of the Potomac. General John B. Floyd's precipitate retreat from the fort as the Union forces approached was afterwards represented in one of his official reports as an heroic exploit.
Page 319. Taney. Roger B. Taney, of Maryland, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States from 1836 to 1864. He is chiefly notable for the Dred Scott decision, in 1857, in which he held that a negro was not a “person ” in the contemplation of the Constitution, and hence “had no rights a white man was bound to respect"; that the Constitution recognized property in slaves, and that this ownership was as much entitled to protection in the Territories as any other species of property. According to this, all legislation by Congress on slavery, except in its aid, was unconstitutional.
Page 321. Compromise System. Henry Clay was the “great compromiser." The aim of his life was the preservation of the Union even at the cost of extending slave territory. The three compromises for which he is famous were the Missouri in 1820, the Tariff in 1833, and the California or “Omnibus” Compromise in 1850, the most conspicuous feature of which was the Fugitive Slave Law.
Page 323. “S. J. Court.” At the beginning of Lincoln's administration, five of the Supreme Court Justices, an absolute majority, were from the South, and had always been State-rights Democrats. Page 327. “ The Law-'n'-Order Party of ole Cincinnater.” In Cincinnati, on March 24, 1862, Wendell Phillips, while attempting to deliver one of his lectures on slavery and the war, was attacked by a mob and very roughly handled.
Page 348. Gov'nor Seymour. Horatio Seymour (1810-1886), of Utica, New York, was one of the most prominent and respected men in the Demo cratic party, and a bitter opponent of Lincoln. He had at this time been recently elected Governor of New York on a platform that denounced almost every measure the government had found it necessary to adopt for the suppression of the Rebellion. His influence contributed not a little to the encouragement of that spirit which inspired the Draft Riot in the city of New York in July, 1863. Page 350.
“ Pres'dunt's proclamation.” In the autumn of 1862 Mr. Lincoln saw that he must either retreat or advance boldly against slavery. He had already proceeded far enough against it to rouse a dangerous hostility among Northern Democrats, and yet not far enough to injure the institution or enlist the sympathy of pronounced anti-slavery men. He determined on decisive action. On September 22, 1862, he issued a monitory proclamation giving notice that on the first day of the next year he would, in the exercise of his war-power, emancipate all slaves of those States or parts of States in rebellion, unless certain conditions were complied with. This proclamation was at once violently assailed by the Democrats, led by such men as Seymour, and for a time the opposition threatened disaster to the administration. The elections in the five leading free States - New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois went against the Republicans. But with the aid of New England, the West, and, not least of all, the Border Slave States, the President was assured a majority of about twenty in the new House to carry out his abolition policy.
Page 352. “ Kettelopotomachia." The incident furnishing the occasion for this poem was a Virginia duel, or rather a free fight. Mr. H. R. Pollard, of
the Richmond Examiner, had some difficulty with Messrs. Coleman and N. P. Tyler, of the Enquirer, concerning the public printing. On Friday, January 5, 1866, all three gentlemen met in the rotunda of the Virginia Capitol, and proceeded to settle their dispute by an appeal to revolvers. Six shots were fired, but no damage resulted, except to a marble statue of Washington.
“ Letcheris." John Letcher (1813–1884), a Virginia lawyer and politician, was several times in Congress, and was Governor of his State from 1860 to 1864.
Page 357. "Floydis." John B. Floyd (1805–1863) was Governor of Virginia from 1849 to 1852, Secretary of War in Buchanan's Cabinet, and a brigadier in the Confederate service. Page 357.
“ Extra ordine Billis." William Smith, of King George County, Virginia, was the proprietor of an old line of coaches running through Virginia and the Carolinas. He was called “Extra Billy because he charged extra for every package, large or small, which his passengers carried. Mr. Smith himself, however, attributed his nickname to his extra service to the State. He was several times a Congressman, twice Governor of Virginia, and a Confederate Brigadier-General.
Page 385. Seward. Under the influence of Mr. Seward, President Andrew Johnson developed a policy of reconstruction directly opposed to the views of Congress and the mass of the Republican party. He believed in punishing individuals, if necessary, but that all the States ought to be re-installed at once in the position they had occupied in 1860. The guarantees against disloyalty he proposed to exact from the South were few and feeble. Congress, on the other hand, determined to keep the subdued States in a position somewhat resembling that of territories and under military surveillance until it could be satisfied that four years' war would not be without good results. Its chief aim was to secure the safety of the negro, who had been freed by the thirteenth Amendment in December, 1865. These differences of plan led to a protracted and bitter contest between the executive and legislative departments, culminating in the unsuccessful attempt to impeach Johnson in March, 1868. The Congressional policy was carried out over the President's vetoes. Among other conditions the Southern States were required to ratify the fourteenth and fifteenth Amendments, giving citizenship and suffrage to the blacks, before being qualified for readmission to the Union.
« Mac.” General George B. McClellan was one of the leaders of the Northern Democracy during the war, and the presidential nominee against Lincoln in 1864. Page 393.
“ Johnson's speech an' velo message." The Civil Rights Act of March, 1866, had just been the occasion of an open rupture between Congress and the President. The bill, conferring extensive rights on freedmen, passed both Houses, but was vetoed by Johnson. It was quickly passed again over his veto. Page 394.
“ A temp’ry party can be based on 't." Johnson's plan of reconstruction did, indeed, furnish the material for the next Democratic platform in the presidential campaign of 1868.
Page 394. Tyler. John Tyler, who had been chosen Vice-President in 1840, succeeded to the Presidency on the death of Harrison one month after the inauguration. He abandoned the policy of the party that elected him, and provoked just such a contest with it as Johnson did.