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it evidently should not, according to our views, hes- | the British nation, and that he itate about the determination to be taken.
"Lord Lyons is already instructed to present the demand for satisfaction, which the English Cabinet is under the necessity of reducing to form, and which consists in the immediate release of the persons taken from on board the Trent, and in sending explanations which may take from this act its offensive character toward the British flag. The Federal Government will be inspired by a just and exalted feeling in deferring to these requests. One would search in vain to what end, for what interest, it would hazard to provoke by a different attitude a rupture with Great Britain.
The French view.
"For ourselves, we should see in that fact a deplorable complication, in every respect, of the difficulties with which the Cabinet at Washington has already to struggle, and a precedeut of a nature seriously to disquiet all the powers which continue outside of the existing contest. We believe that we give evidence of loyal friendship for the Cabinet of Washington by not permitting it to remain in ignorance, in this condition of things, of our manner of regarding it. I request you, therefore, sir, to seize the first occasion of opening yourself frankly to Mr. Seward, and, if he asks it, send him a copy of this dispatch.
"Sir: I have submitted to
the President the copy you were so good as to give me of the dispatch addressed to you on the 3d of December instant, concerning the recent proceedings of Captain Wilkes in arresting certain persons on board of the British contract mail steamer Trent.
"Before receiving the paper, however, the President had decided upon the disposition to be made of the subject, which has caused so much anxiety
in Europe. That disposition of the subject, as I think, renders unnecessary any discussion of it in reply to the comments of M. Thouvenel. I am permitted, however, to say that M. Thouvenel has not been in error in supposing-first, that the Government of the United States has not acted in any spirit of disregard of the rights or of the sensibilities of
is equally just in assuming that
"When the French Government shall come to see at large the views of this Government and those of the Government of Great Britain on the subject now in question, and to compare them with the views expressed by M. Thouvenel on the part of France, it will probably perceive that, while it must be admitted that those three powers are equally impressed with the same desire for the establishment of principles favorable to neutral rights, there is, at the same time, not such an entire agreement concerning the application of those principles as is desirable to secure that important object.
"The Government of the United States will be happy if the occasion which has elicited this corre spondence can be improved so as to secure a more definite agreement upon the whole subject all by maritime powers.
You will assure M. Thouvenel that this Government appreciates as well the frankness of his explanations as the spirit of friendship and good will towards the United States, in which they are expressed.
"It is a sincere pleasure for the United States to exchange assurances of a friendship which had its origin in associations the most sacred in the history of both countries.
I avail myself of this opportunity to renew to you, sir, the assurance of my high consideration. "WILLIAM H. SEWARD."
Lord Lyons did not await the remission to his Government of Mr. Seward's reply in or der to accept the terms conceded. The Confederate ambassadors were released Jan. 1st, passing out of the fort in a quiet manner to a tugboat in waiting. The tug conveyed them to Provincetown, where they were transferred to the British war steamer Rinaldo, which sailed, the same evening, for England. Thus ended an affair that gave promise of one of the most serious wars of modern times, That this country came out of the difficulty with honor, even its enemies confessed. The settlement was a staggering blow to those friends of the Southern Confederacy abroad who saw, in the impending collision, the surest way to Southern independence. It signally defeated the combinations and ma
The Good Result.
BATTLE OF BELMONT.
were it possible for such an emotion to affect the hearts of men influenced by the ideas which appeared to prevail in the "influential circles" of British society during the fall of the year 1861.
chinations of the secessionists abroad whose | rebuke which must have been humiliating, sharpest weapons were falsehoods and misrepresentations. It materially qualified the effect of Jefferson Davis' message of November 18th, [see pages ——,] especially directed to the end of obtaining foreign sympathy. To the great majority of English journals which had fairly reeked with invective and defamation toward the United States Government, as a people and a power, it was a Confederate President.
The ambassadors arrived in London in the latter part of January, 1862, to enter upon the career of usefulness' prescribed by the
CENTRATION OF FEDERAL FORCES. HUNTER'S REPUDIATION OF THE FREMONT PRICE "TREATY." THE "TREATY" AND HUNTER'S REASONS FOR REPUDIATING IT. FREMONT'S ERRORS.
Affairs in Missouri.
IN Chapter IX. Division | from this purpose, and also V. we record the events of Fremont's rule in Missouri, ending with his suspension from command and the retreat of his army by orders of his successor, General Hunter. We may now resume the narrative, considering events which transpired pending General Halleck's assumption of the chief command in that department.
The operations of General Grant in the District of Southeastern Missouri, during the early part of November, properly belong to a record of the campaign in Missouri, although he acted independently and reported directly to headquarters at Washington.
While Fremont was pressBattle of Belmont. ing forward to engage the forces of Price and McCullough, apprehensions were entertained by General Grant of the Confederate General Polk, commanding at Columbus, Kentucky, pushing reenforcements forward from Belmont and New Madrid, thus to overpower Fremont by the mere strength of numbers. To divert the enemy
Battle of Belmont.
to prevent him from reen-
Battle of Belmont.
Battle of Belmont.
gunboats proceeded down | infantry and artillery, and the river to engage the after a desperate resistance batteries above Columbus. Grant in his re- drove the enemy back the third time, forcing port said of his disposition of forces: "Know- them to seek cover among thick woods and ing that Columbus was strongly garrisoned, brush, protected by the heavy guns at CoI asked General Smith, commanding at Pa- lumbus. While this struggle was going on ducah, Ky., to make demonstrations in the same directions. He did so, by ordering a small force to Mayfield, and another in the direction of Columbus, not to approach nearer, however, than twelve or fifteen miles. I also sent a small force on the Kentucky side, some twelve miles from Columbus. All this served to distract the enemy, and lead him to think he was to be attacked in his strongly fortified position."
The enemy was on the alert. The Federals moved forward to find their antagonists drawn up in a good position, nearly two miles in advance of their entrenched camp on the river, immediately opposite and protected by the Columbus batteries. Grant said: "At daylight we proceeded down the river to a point just out of range of the rebel guns, and debarked on the Missouri shore. From here the troops were marched by a flank for about one mile towards Belmont, and then drawn up in line, one battalion having been left as a reserve near the transports. Two companies from each regiment, five skeletons in number, were thrown out as skirmishers to ascertain the position of the enemy.
a tremendous fire from the Twenty-seventh, which had approached the abattis on the right and rear of the tents, was heard. About the same time the Seventh and Twenty-second, which had passed the rear of the Thirtieth and Thirty-first, hastened up, and, closing the space between them and the Twenty-seventh, poured a deadly fire upon the enemy. A combined movement was now made upon three sides of the enemy's works, and, driving him across the abattis, we followed close. upon his heels into the clear space around his camp."
In this fierce contest many brave men were Grant's horse was there killed under McClernand's horse was struck several Colonel Lanmann fell. Yet, considering the exposure and daring of officers and men, the loss was comparatively small.
But, the victory, though won, was not secure. Bishop Polk, in his special dispatch to Jefferson Davis, said:
"The enemy came down on the opposite side of the river Belmont to-day, about seven thousand five hundred strong, landed under cover of gunboats, and attacked Colonel Tappan's camp. I sent over three regiments, under General Pillow, to his relief, then at intervals three others, then General Cheat ham. I then took over two others in person, to support a flank movement which I had directed. It was a hard fought battle, lasting from half-past ten
"It was but a few moments before they met him, and a general engagement ensued. The balance of my force, with the exception of the reserve, was then thrown forward, all as skirmishers, and the enemy driven, foot by foot, and from tree to tree back to their encampment on the river's bank, a distance of over two miles. Here they had strength-A. M. to five P. M. They took Beltzhoover's batteened their position by felling the timber for several hundred yards around their camp, and making a sort of abattis.
"Our men charged through this, driving the enemy over the river banks and into their transports in quick time, leaving us in possession of everything not exceedingly portable."
This brief mention covers much gallant action. The fight was one of great obstinacy and was only won by the unflinching nerve of the assailants. McClernand, after adverting to the enemy's attempt to cut his line and his disposition to avert their design, thus characterised the struggle which followed: "We again opened a deadly fire from both
ry, four pieces of which we recaptured. The enemy were thoroughly routed. We purrued them to their boats, seven miles, then drove their boats before
The road was strewn with their dead and wounded, guns, ammunition and equipments. Our loss is considerable-theirs heavy."
The first three Confederate regiments under Pillow participated in the early fight, and were driven back into the timber after attempting to cut McClerland's line. The other reenforcements sent over by Polk, under Cheatham and others, joined Pillow's forces above the camp, with the well conceiv ed purpose of cutting off the Federal retreat to the transports, four miles away.
BATTLE OF BELMONT.
Battle of Belmont.
Battle of Belmont.
In this ratio
while the Illinois and Iowa | engaged, in killed, wound"boys" were shouting for ed and missing, as three the Union in the captured camp, the enemy hundred and sixty-four. was planting his forces, three to one, in the way of a retreat. Eight full regiments, in addition to such of Tappan's finely armed brigade as could be gathered, were thus thrown into position on the line. Grant was not caught unawares. Almost as soon as the camp was captured he fired its property and sounded the retreat. He said:
their total loss must have reached a number but little short of one thousand.
Belmont is on low ground, and every foot of it commanded by the guns on the opposite shore, and, of course, could not be held for a single hour after the enemy became aware of the withdrawal of their troops. Having no wagons with me I could not move any of the captured property, consequently gave orders for its destruction. Their tents, blankets, &c., were set on fire, and we retreated, taking their artillery with us, two pieces being drawn by hand, and one by an inefficient team, were spiked and left in the woods, bringing two to this place,
As will be inferred from, General Polk's dispatch to Jefferson Davis, the Confederates claimed a great victory. Davis returned his congratulations to General Polk. "Accept," he said, "for yourself and the officers and men under your command, my sincere thanks for the glorious contribution you have just. made to our common cause." And, in his message of November 18th, he referred to the battle of Belmont as one of the "glorious victories" which had blessed the Confederate arms He did not, of course, allude to the guns which Grant had carried away-to the entrenched encampment destroyed to the advance." true nature of the Federal
The dispatch of Colonel Ogilvie from Cairo, and the movement of troops from Cape Girardeau and Ironton-all designed to surprise Jefferson Thompson's camp at Bloomdefeat-field-was only a partial success.
"Before getting fairly under way, the enemy made his appearance again and attempted to surround us. Our troops were not in the least discouraged, but charged the enemy and again
McClernand, in his report, detailed with much pride the splendid conduct of his men in the retreat. It was a fight in solid column, the artillery opening the way before them. The enemy, easily broken, fought with great irregularity. A lack of generalship was shown in their manœuvres. Had they been well ordered the route to the transports must have been thick with Federal dead.
The official returns gave the following table of Federal loss:
painful march through the Big Mingo swamp, Ogilvie arrived at Bloomfield on the morning of November 7th, to find Thompson and his braves gone: they had incontinently fled to the swamps.
These dashes by Grant served the good purpose of inspiriting the troops if nothing else. Long inactivity in camp rendered them uneasy, while their employment in active service excited that emulation which is the best assurance of success. The retreat of Fremont's advance upon Springfield, and the Wou ded. Missing. centralization of his forces at Rolla, St. Louis and Sedalia, rendered further diversions by Grant unnecessary. He therefore turned his attention to Western Kentucky, from whence the Confederates menaced both Cairo and St. Louis. His campaign up the Cumberland, which soon followed, forms one of most exciting chapters of the war. Hunter having assumed command in Missouri after Fremont's deposition, ordered the retreat from Springfield, already chronicled, [see page 340.] The troops, thrown forward at such vast cost, retired, and the public sought to discover whether
Seventh Iowa regiment...
Twenty-seventh Illinois regiment.10
folly had ordered the advance or the retreat. One thing was not left in doubt-its results. The withdrawal to the line of the Pacific railway left a shadow over Southern Missouri which grew lurid with fire and blood. The Unionists of all that section were, from that hour, exiles, or, if they remained, it was to endure a savage persecution. Pillage, violence, murder, stalked unchecked up to the very heart of the State; mercy was forgotten to men, and pity scorned to women and children; wherever the cut-throats of Texas, Arkansas and the border moved, their track was marked with desolation.
Missouri State Militia
Victor Hugo says: "The brutalities of progress are called revolutions; when they are past this is apparent, namely, that the human race has been harshly treated, but has, nevertheless, advanced." It will be hard for those who suffered the brutalities of the revolution in Missouri to discover its beneficence. If, out of the fire and blood came no just apprehension of the monster iniquity which was the very soul of that revo- | lution, the Missouri people suffered in vain. The great novelist will find his assumption of good from evil only sustained by its negative application to the secession revoluion. November 7th, an rangement was announced, by orders from headquarters at Washington, whereby the Missouri State militia were to be called into the field to the aid of the United States forces in suppressing the rebellion. This was effected by Governor Gamble's personal application to the War Office. The terms of the arrangement gave the organization of the troops to the Governor, who was to appoint, as their Major General, the General commanding the Department of the West. This implied the fact of the troops being under control of the United States authorities. They were to be armed, clothed, subsisted and paid as any other forces of like arms of the service. All Home and State Guards were, by this agreement, enlisted in the war at once, and soon gave to the Department commander large reenforcements to his ranks.
Reorganization of Military Depart
"1. The Department of New Mexico, to consist of the Territory of New Mexico; to be commanded by Colonel E. R. S. Canby, United States Army.
"2. The Department of Kansas, to include the State of Kansas, the Indian Territory west of Arkansas, and the Territories of Nebraska, Colorado and Dacotah, to be commanded by Major General Hunter. Headquarters at Fort Leavenworth.
"3. The Department of the Missouri, to include the States of Missouri, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Arkansas, and that portion of Kentucky west of the Cumberland river, to be commanded by Major General H. W. Halleck, United States Army.
4. The Department of the Ohio, to consist of the States of Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, and that portion of Kentucky east of the Cumberland river, and
the State of Tennessee, to be commanded by Brigadier General D. C. Buell. Headquarters at Louisville.
Concentration of Fed eral Forces.
General Hunter, during the brief term of his temporary command in Missouri, did ittle else than to concentrate troops, preparatory to turning them over to General Halleck. His orders promulgated from St. Louis Nov. 12th, enjoined upon all commanders of troops to "avoid extensive movements which offer battle or divide and prolong our lines, until further concert and concentration of action can be arranged, and instructions giving full and concise reports will be forwarded immediately to Brigadier General Curtis, St. Louis, giving the strength, position and condition of every command in the department."
Hunter arrived in St. Louis November 15th. General Lane's brigade, withdrawing from Springfield, eventually retired to Fort Scott in Kansas. The divisions of Pope, McKinstry and Hunter marched to the line of the Pacific railway, to await Halleck's orders. The divisions of Siegel and Asboth soon followed. Upon Halleck's arrival in St. Louis, November 18th, he convened the Generals of divisions to a conference, and was then prepared to assume the duties of his com
Nov. 9th, the War Department announced the reorganization of the departments of the West, of the Ohio, and of the Cumberland, viz.: | mand.