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The Life and Public Services of Henry Wilson
Chapter XVIII.


CONTEST BETWEEN THE PRESIDENT AND CONGRESS. - MR. WILSON'S VIEWS OF RECONSTRUCTION. - REPLY TO MR. COWAN. - SPEECH ON MR. STEVENS'S RESOLUTION, ETC. - RELIGIOUS VIEWS. - MILITARY MEASURES IN CONGRESS.

WHEN, by the death of Mr. Lincoln, Andrew Johnson came into the executive chair, the senators of our State had strong hopes that he would carry out the policy of their party, and maintain the vantage-ground so nobly won by the untiring valor of the national army. The States lately in rebellion were now prostrate, their governments dissolved, and their military organizations demoralized and disbanded. The Union flag was floating over them; aid the leaders were ready to accept such terms of reconstruction and restoration as the president and Congress might deem advisable. It was a golden opportunity for the friends of freedom. The power of re-organization was in their Lands but the work to be accomplished was of no small magnitude; and from the peculiar relations between the loyalists, the freedmen, and the confederates, it was as delicate as it was difficult and great.

Forgetting that his province was to execute, not frame, the laws, and assuming that the power of reconstruction was in his hands alone, the president began the work by what lie termed an "experiment;" which, during the recess in Congress, became a settled governmental policy. By his unwarrantable course, he so revived the hopes of the disloyal States, that on the opening of the Thirty-ninth Congress in December, 1865, a demand was made for the immediate admission of senators and representatives holding rebel sentiments from the disaffected States. This demand, encouraged by Mr. Johnson, the Republicans persistently resisted; and the struggle between the legislative and the executive branches of the government thence became intensely earnest, and so continued till the term of the experimenting president expired.

In the reconstruction of the States, Mr. Wilson's counsel was for a generous yet decisive course of action. Let loyal men alone assume control; let freedmen be protected; let the governments be constructed on the basis of equal rights for every citizen, and loyalty to the Union. He desired not to crush, but to elevate and improve, the Southern people; asking only security for the future of the nation. Congress alone has the power to reconstruct the States; and, when so reconstructed, they may have, and not till then, a representation in this body. In support of his bill to maintain the freedom of the inhabitants of the States lately in rebellion, he said in the Senate on the 13th of December, 1865, "I have never entertained a feeling of bitterness or of unkindness to the Southern people. Notwithstanding all that has taken place, I have always regarded those persons as my countrymen; nor do I wish to impose upon the many things that would be degrading or unmanly but I wish to protect all the people there, of every race, the poorest and the humblest; and, while I would not degrade any of them, neither would I allow them to degrade others. . . . To turn these freedmen over to the tender mercies of men who hate them for their fidelity to the country is a crime that will bring the judgment of Heaven upon us."

Two days after the announcement that the States had ratified the constitutional amendment abolishing slavery, Mr. Wilson introduced, Dec. 21, 1865, another bill, - "to maintain and enforce the freedom of the inhabitants of the United States;" which was nearly the same in substance as Mr. Trumbull's Civil-rights Bill, enacted over the veto of the president on the 9th of April, 1866.

On the 22d of January, 1806, he made an effective speech in support of Mr. Trumbull's bill for the enlargement of the Freedmen's Bureau, which was also vetoed by the president. Replying to Mr. Cowan, - a Republican in name, but Democrat in action, who had insolently demanded what the honorable senator from Massachusetts meant in saying that "all men in this country must be equal," - he said, "Does he" (the senator from Pennsylvania) ' not know that we mean that the poorest man, be he black or white, that treads the soil of this continent, is as much entitled to the protection of the law as the richest and the proudest man in the land? Does he not know that we mean that the poor man, whose wife may be dressed in cheap calico, is as much entitled to have her protected by equal law as is the rich man to have his jewelled bride protected by the laws of the land? Does he not know that the poor man's cabin, though it may be the cabin of a poor freedman in the depths of the Carolinas, is entitled to the protection of the same law that protects the palace of a Stewart or an Astor? He knows that we have advocated the rights of the black man, because the black man was the most oppressed type of the toiling men of this country. The man who is the enemy of the black laboring-man is the enemy of the white laboring-man the world over. The same influences that go to crush down and keep down the rights of the poor black man bear down and oppress the poor white laboring-man. . . I tell the senator from Pennsylvania that I know we shall carry these measures. God is not dead, and we live; and standing upon the eternal principles of' his justice, with a Christian nation behind us, with God's commands ever ringing in our ears, we shall in time future, as we have in the twenty-five years of the past, march straight forward to battle and to victory over all opposition."

Such sentiments the State which Mr. Wilson represents indorses. They accord with Solon's high conception of true liberty, - "A commonwealth where an injury to the meanest member is an injury to the whole."

As some new military organizations in the insurrectionary States were commanded by veterans in the Rebellion, and refused to carry the Union flag, Mr. Wilson, on the 19th of February, 1866, introduced .a joint resolution providing that they should be forthwith disbanded, and such organizations prohibited in the future. This became a law, preventing that exhibition of disloyal purpose, and protecting peaceable citizens from abuse.

On the resolution of Mr. Stevens against the admission of senators and representatives from any rebel State until Congress shall have declared such State entitled to such representation, he made, March 2, an eloquent speech, in which his views on many points of reconstruction are presented. On the nature of the struggle he asserted that:-

"A loyal people instinctively see, amid the turmoil and excitement of the present, that this is not a struggle for the re-admission of the rebel States into the Union, but a struggle for the admission of rebels into the legislative branches of the government; not a struggle to put rebels under the laws of the country, but a struggle to enable rebels to frame the laws of the country. A loyal people see that the Confederate States, reconstructed since the surrender of the rebel armies, are as completely in the hands of rebels now as on the day Jeff. Davis was incarcerated at Fortress Monroe."

Of the condition of the freedmen under the new order of things he remarked,-

"The poor freedmen, who a few months ago were leaping and laughing with the joy of new-found liberty, in yoking the blessings of Heaven upon the government that had stricken the galling manacles from their limbs, are now trembling with apprehension, everywhere subject to indignity, insult, outrage, and murder. During the past four months, in Alabama alone, fourteen hundred cases of assault upon freedmen have been brought before the Freedmen's Bureau. Thousands and tens of thousands of harmless black men, from the Potomac to the Rio Grande, have been wronged and outraged by violence, and hundreds upon hundreds have been murdered. The offices and the agencies of the Freedmen's Bureau, of the officers of our armies, and the office of Judge-Advocate Gen. Holt, are filled with the records of outrage and murder. The local authorities screen the murderers; the people protest against the punishment of white men for the murder of black men; and the murderers go unpunished."

Of the great mistake of the president he said,-

"Thoughtful men, anxious to heal the wounds of civil war, and bury in forgetfulness the memories of old contests, were speaking for universal amnesty and universal suffrage, for forgiving and restoring all. The nobler sentiments of the liberty-loving men of the country at that time are caught and expressed in the verse of Whittier: -

'From you alone the guaranty
Of union, freedom, peace, we claim:
We urge no conquerer's terms of shame.

Alas I no victor's pride is ours,
Who bend above our triumphs won
Like David o'er his rebel son.

Be men, not beggars; cancel all
By one brave, generous action; trust
Your better instincts, and be just.

Make all men peers before the law;
Take hands from off the negro's throat;
Give black and white an equal vote.

Keep all your forfeit lives and lands,
But give the common law's redress
To labor's utter nakedness.'

"If the President of the United States had seized that golden moment, —that grand opportunity then vouchsafed by Providence to weapon the hand of the new-made freeman with the ballot, - these sectional controversies would have perished forever; the representatives of the rebellious States would, ere this, have filled these vacant chairs; and the heavens would be raining their choicest blessings upon the nation for a deed so wise and so just. But the president, though frankly avowing himself in favor of qualified suffrage, declined to assume the responsibility which the condition of the country imposed upon him; and the great opportunity God gave the nation to destroy caste, to clothe the emancipated race with power to guard their own liberties, rights, and interests without a struggle, passed by, perhaps forever.

"The loyal people of the United States, who have poured out so much blood and given so much treasure for its preservation, are in favor of fully protecting the people of the rebellious States, white and black, loyal and dis-loyal; but they have the right to demand, and they should demand, before intrusting the legislation of the country to the framers and administrators of confederate governments, and to the soldiers who have met their sons on bloody battle-fields, ample security for the rights of loyal men of every race, and for the money loaned the country in its hour of need to arm, clothe, feed, equip, and pay the defenders of the republic."

In the closing paragraph of this spirited speech he thus prophetically pointed to Gen. Grant as the next president. He said, -

"Two years ago, in a trying hour of the country, we placed a great soldier at the head of all our armies; and he led those armies to victory, and the country to peace. Perhaps a patriotic and liberty-loving people, if disappointed in their aspirations and their hopes, may again turn to that great captain, and summon him to marshal them to victory."

In addition to various resolutions, reports, and private bills which he brought forward during the Thirty-ninth Congress, Mr. Wilson spoke on the bills for the admission of Nebraska and Colorado, for which he voted; also in advocacy of the protection of the national cemeteries, of the establishment of a department of education, of the incorporation of the orphans' home, of appropriations for soldiers' bounties, and for other important measures. He was never idle; yet he often said, as in the war, that he was not accomplishing what he would or could.

Such is a brief outline of some of the legislative labors which Mr. Wilson performed in that series of Congressional measures which culminated in the suppression of the Rebellion and the liberation of the slave; and which, for wisdom, efficiency, and humanity, will ever command the admiration of the world. Since that period Mr. Wilson has been steadily at his post in Congress, battling for the rights of the freedmen and for restoration of tranquillity to the Union on the basis of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. The pages of "The Congressional Globe" bear ample witness to his unremitting industry, as well as to the practical views he entertained and the manly sentiments he expressed upon the various questions which arose in Congress.

His views of the policy of the president Mr. Wilson expressed in a large meeting in Tremont Temple, Boston. on the 6th of August.

After alluding to what had been accomplished the last six years, he said we had yet work to do. Of the honorable men who, in November, 1864, re-elected Abraham Lincoln president, and Andrew Johnson vice-president, ninety-nine out of a hundred were to-day bowing their heads in disappointment and sorrow. This was because the vice-president, who became president by an act that needed not naming, has disappointed our expectations, turned his back upon the men who elected him, upon the principles he then professed, and is to-day the inspiration of wrong and outrage upon loyal white men and upon loyal black men South.

In the same month, by an invitation signed by a hundred and fourteen of the citizens of Natick, he addressed the people of that town, who always throng the hall to hear him, upon the variance between the president and Congress; and urged his hearers in words of glowing eloquence to vote for the amendment to the Constitution, as essential to the liberties of the people and the rights of the unprotected freedmen.

"After the surrender of Lee," he said, "the rebels were absolutely under the control of the military authorities of the government. They were then ready to accept any terms the nation chose to give. But to-day the rebels have possession of Virginia, of its government, of North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana; and on Thursday next they will take possession of the government of Texas in the person of their rebel governor, Gen. Throckmorton. How came this so? Andrew Johnson, elected by the votes of loyal men who carried the country through the fire and blood of four years of war, has put these States in the hands of rebels.

"And what have the legislatures elected under his policy done? That of Virginia inaugurated no State officers unless they were well-known rebels. North Carolina has elected a delegation to Congress, that, with one exception, are rebels. South Carolina has elected a rebel delegation, and has a rebel governor, - one of the leading men in establishing the confederacy. Georgia has elected Alexander H. Stephens to the Senate of the United States, and an unbroken rebel delegation to the House. Florida has a rebel governor, one rebel and one loyal senator, whose term will expire on the 4th of next March; and there is no prospect of his being re-elected. Mississippi and Alabama have sent to Congress men who cannot take the oath....

"These States want admission into Congress; and for what purpose? To take part in the government of the United States; and not only to govern these States, but to direct and control the policy of the nation. And they present themselves with the declaration, that they acquiesce in their defeat because they cannot help it. They are not sorry for their revolt against the country, and that they murdered more than three hundred thousand men fighting to uphold the old flag. We should never consent to surrender into rebel hands the government for which these loyal soldiers died."

He closed by paying an eloquent tribute to the patriotism of Massachusetts.

He had no doubt that Massachusetts would be all right: she had always been. Among the first and foremost has she been for the rights of man, and in the bloody Rebellion through which we have just passed. The bones of her sons lie upon many a battle-field; her maimed heroes are here among us; her brave men who have come from battle-fields forever made immortal are here. I believe they will vote in the future as they have fought in the past. I believe that the loyal men who carried the country through the war will stand by this constitutional amendment, - stand by the action of Congress now, and elect one that will be true to them and that in 1868. The unity of the country will be assured, and the liberties of ah races and conditions of men forever established in America."

Senator Wilson spoke an hour and a half, and was frequently applauded.

Addressing a vast assembly at Philadelphia, Sept. 4,— for we find him ever moving, ever speaking, in defence of human rights, he said he "could tell the president and his cabinet that Congress was not a subordinate, but a co-ordinate branch of the government (cheers); that backed up by the country, as it had been, now was, and would be, it would speak for itself, and fix the time and conditions in which it would admit the representatives of rebel constituencies to the Senate and House of Representatives. (Cheers.) It wanted the rebel States represented at the earliest possible moment, not by such men as had met here a few weeks ago, but by such men as were in the city to-day (cheers), and who were true to the country and to liberty."

Referring to the assertion that the president was pursuing the policy of Mr. Lincoln, which Mr. Wilson pronounced as black a falsehood as ever fell from human lips, he said, "Abraham Lincoln sought to put the rebel States into the hands of loyal men; but Andrew Johnson put them back into the hands of rebels; and loyal men were under the hoof of those rebels as much now as when Jefferson Davis was President of the Southern Confederacy."

In the autumn of this year Mr. Wilson made a tour through the West, where he met with most cordial receptions, and addressed many large and enthusiastic audiences in six Western cities on the questions then at issue. In this journey he travelled over three thousand miles, and in one instance spoke to a throng of about thirty thousand people. In his speech at Chicago on the twenty-eighth day of September, he said, -

"You will remember that army after army surrendered, and those composing each one hastened to their homes; that the rebels were humiliated, subjugated, conquered, and powerless at our feet, ready to accept any policy the government chose to impose upon them. We all know that these conquered rebels in every portion of the country were ready and willing to accept at the hands of this government just such a policy as the government believed the good of the country required.

"You will remember how kind, humane, and generous our people were. We did not wish their lands, money, or blood; but we desired security for the future. We wanted that the fruits of the war should be gathered: that was all. Our capitalists were ready to send their money there. Our young men were ready to go there and develop that portion of the country. Our noble women, who rushed to the hospitals and bound up the wounds of our soldiers, were ready to go there and instruct instruct the darkened intellects of an emancipated race. All over the loyal States there was a desire, not to punish, to crush out, or to crush down, this people, but a desire to lift up and improve that section of the country, and to demand only security for the future of the nation.

"Now, this was the feeling in the spring of 1865; but what is the condition of that portion of the country now? These men, then humble and penitent, and making excuses for their actions, are now boasting of their deeds against the country, and are scornfully defiant. 'Why? Who is responsible? I say that Andrew Johnson alone is responsible for this change in the condition of affairs. Our brave soldiers struck the weapons from the rebel hands, and Andrew Johnson has restored them to them. Every one of the States which lie has reconstructed has passed into the hands of unrepentant rebels. The other day, after he had put the government of Texas into the hands of a rebel general, he issued a proclamation declaring that peace had come. Order reigned in Warsaw then. Peace came, when the last great rebel State was put back again into the hands of the rebels! And these States are in rebel hands to-day.

The president demands the admission of their representatives into Congress. Now, only five of the men elected in those ten rebel States can take the oath of office. Five only! The others are unrepentant traitors, though some of them are pardoned ones. Now, it is demanded that they shall be admitted into the Congress of the United States. They went out when it pleased them to go out: they shall come back when we please to let them back. They went out against our pleadings. We almost went upon our knees and implored them to remain with us, to follow the old flag, and stand by the common country; but they turned their backs upon us, and went out undertaking to establish a government. They said they would go out, and we said they should not. They fought to go out, and we fought to keep them in; and, thanks be to God, they are to-night part and parcel of our common country, within the Union, and under the authority of the laws. The old flag is there waving over them. The boys in blue are there to maintain the authority of the government. They have to pay their taxes and obey the laws. They are subject to the authority of the nation. All there is about it is this: their senators and representatives are not yet permitted to go into Congress and legislate for the country; and we mean, when we have taken ample security for the future, to let them in, and not until we have taken it.

"This body of men, 'calling itself a Congress,' that Andrew Johnson says 'is hanging on the verge of the government,' - this body of men has framed a constitutional amendment. We have submitted it to the people: and I tell you that this nation has resolved it; it has proclaimed it; it is recorded that that amendment shall be incorporated into the Constitution of the country, and the representatives of these traitors shall sit no more in the Congress of the United States. If they want to be represented, let them adopt that constitutional amendment; let them choose men who believe in it, who are for it, and who will guard it; let them choose men who will in the future be with their country and for their countrymen' who give all they have, and all they hope to be, to the cause of unity and a free country, -a country that recognizes the equality of all men, and the equal privileges of all men; and then the seats are ready for them in the Senate and House of Representatives, and not until that day.

"You have recently had a visit from the chief magistrate of the country. Let me say that I think that chief magistrate has gone hack to Washington a sadder, if not a wiser man. He believed that he could do what he started to do in May, 1865; ay, before Abraham Lincoln had been laid in his grave at Springfield: and that was, to build up a great personal party; that he should be the founder of a great political party, as were Jefferson and Jackson. He has labored from May, 1865, until the present time, to create, build up, organize, and develop such a party in America; and what is the result? He has the whole power and patronage of this government brought to bear. He has shaken in the face of the loyal people of the land the vast patronage of the government. I told them in the Senate last winter, that a nation that had buried three hundred thousand of its children to save the country was in no temper to be bought off by patronage."

The bill for extending the elective franchise to the freedmen of the District of Columbia received Mr. Wilson's cordial support during its tardy progress through the Senate. Speaking on one of the amendments to the bill, he thus declared (Dec. 13, 1866) his views on the right of suffrage: "Sir, I believe in the right of suffrage for my country. I believe in it far more for the poor, ignorant man. I believe that he is more of a man when he has it, and that he will use it in the future as he has in the past, - generally for the elevation and the protection of the poor and lowly and dependent. No loyal man who has the right of suffrage shall ever have it taken away or abridged by me, unless for crime. No poor laboring-man shall ever accuse me before the bar of man of God of voting against giving him the same right that I possess to go to the ballot-box."

Ever espousing the cause of the oppressed, Mr. Wilson, in the Senate, on the 20th of December, 1866, introduced a joint resolution authorizing the president to prevent the infliction of corporal punishment in the States lately in rebellion. Its object was, especially, to defend the freedmen in their helplessness from a mode of punishment which lie considered barbarous in its infliction, and degrading in its tendencies.

Surely such sentiments - and they are the rule of the heart and the life - entitle the senator to his honored name of "the poor man's friend."

An amendment by Mr. Wilson, making it unlawful to buy or sell votes, was incorporated in the bill, which, over the veto of the president, became a law on the eighth day of January, 1867; and was the first of these great measures giving the elective franchise to the entire nation.

Although upright and honorable in his dealings with his fellow-men, consistent in his walk and conversation, a regular attendant on the services of the sanctuary, and a supporter of the institutions of religion, Mr. Wilson did not, until the autumn of 1866, avow himself a follower of the Saviour. But, in a large assembly held in the Congregational church in Natick on the 28th of October, he declared in a very touching address, that, within a few past weeks, he had come to a knowledge of his own personal salvation through the merits of the Redeemer. All who knew him felt that he would stand firmly to the position he had taken; and many prayers ascended to the seat of mercy that the richest blessings of our heavenly Father might attend the future course of the beloved senator.

On his return from Washington, he addressed, Dec. 23, the Young Men's Christian Association of Natick on "The Testimonies of American Statesmen and Jurists to the Truths of Christianity," which was afterwards published in a tract for general circulation. He said, -

"God has given us existence in this Christian republic, founded by men who proclaim as their living faith, amid persecution and exile, 'We give ourselves to the Lord Jesus Christ, and the word of his grace, for the teaching, ruling, and sanctifying of us in matters of worship and conversation.' Privileged to live in this age, when the selectest influences of the religion of our fathers seem to be visibly descending upon our land, we too often hear the providence of God, the religion of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, the inspiration of Holy Writ, doubted, questioned, denied. With an air of gracious condescension we are sometimes reminded that this religion of the crucified Redeemer may do for women, for children, for weak- minded men, but not for men of experience, observation, reflection. Men who see not God in our own history have surely lost sight of the fact, that, from the landing of 'The Mayflower' to this hour, the great men whose names are indissolubly associated with the colonization, rise, and progress of the republic, have borne testimonies to the vital truths of Christianity.

"These utterances, not of the great teachers of Christianity, but of men of varied and large experience, accustomed to the classification and comparison of facts, the sifting and weighing of evidences, cannot pass unheeded by the young men of the land who cherish their names and revere their memories."

After citing the testimonies of the distinguished statesmen of America to the truth and value of the Scriptures, he closed his beautiful address by these admonitory words: -

"Young men of this Christian association, remember, ever and always, that your country was founded, not by the most superficial, the lightest, the most unreflective of all the European races,' but by the stern old Puritans, who made the deck of 'The Mayflower' an altar of the living God, and whose first act, on touching the soil of the New World, was to offer on beaded knees thanksgiving and prayer to Almighty God. Remember, too, that the great men of your country - Washington, Franklin, Jefferson, the Adamses, Hamilton, Jay, Marshall, Kent, Webster, and their illustrious compeers possessed the intellectual force and severity necessary to carry far and long the greatest conception of the human understanding, the idea of God.' Never forgetting the religious character of our national origin, and the humble and pious recognition of the hand of God in our affairs by the immortal statesmen and jurists who moulded and fitshioned the institutions of our country, we will continue to indulge the hope that it shall never be said of any considerable portion of our countrymen, by poet, philosopher, or statesman, of our country, that their minds are too superficial, too light, too unreflective, to conceive 'the profoundest and weightiest idea of which the human intelligence is capable.'

A few days afterwards, the sad intelligence of the death of his only son, Lent.-Col. Henry Hamilton Wilson, which occurred in Austin, Tex., on Dec. 24, came to fill his home with sorrow, which nothing but an abiding trust in him "who doeth all things well" was able to assuage. The remains of this brave young soldier were brought home, and with many tears consigned to their final resting-place in Dell-park Cemetery, where a marble monument has been raised over them, bearing this inscription. On the front, -

"LIEUT.-COL. HENRY HAMILTON WILSON.

Born in Natick, Nov. 11, 1816; died at Austin, Tex., Dec. 24, 1866.

Army of the Potomac."

On the reverse, -

"He the young and strong, who cherished
Noble longings for the strife,
By the roadside fell and perished,
Weary with the march of life.

Department of the South.
Department of the Gulf."

Addressing a Christian convention at Quincy soon after his bereavement, he gave some account of the Congressional prayer-meeting, and then said, "In military life it is the duty of the soldier to be on the alert at all times, and always to be present at the roll-call so should Christians always be present at prayer-meetings. It is said that prayer-meetings are sometimes dull; but, if all Christians attend who can, they never will be dull. With the room well filled, and all engaged in one cause, there will be no lack of interest.

"Christians should act from principle and deep conviction. They should forsake all that tempts others away from duty, should abandon all that will leads others astray. If a glass of wine leads the young to stumble, Christians should throw it away. If going to theatres leads others to wrong, Christians should keep away from theatres. If a Christian feels that his staying away from prayer-meeting causes others to stay away, then he should go, even if he only expected to meet his God there. Nothing but sickness should keep a man from the sabbath-meeting; and all should go to the prayer-meeting who could.

"Christians should not neglect their duty because they are depressed in spirit: they should always be up and doing. They should always act from principle, and always do right. He said he looked to the young men as the hope of the country; and they should catch the spirit of the age, and carry it forward. They should act now as they did in the war. The gigantic evil which had overspread the South had been overcome; and now that region is a missionary field for Christian young men. The net thirty years has a mortgage on the efforts of every Christian young man and woman.

"Although that gigantic evil had been overcome, here in Massachusetts there was a greater evil than slavery had ever been that was intemperance.

"The church wants the same earnestness that the country carried into the war; wants men and money to enroll in the ranks, and be ever ready to respond to the call, morning, noon, or night.'' Alluding to the death of his son, an only child, who had been brought home a corpse from Texas, he said, with much feeling, that he would give his life to-day if he had been able to say to his dear boy what he was now able to say to young men; and he begged of them, as they loved their parents, as they loved their country, to love their Saviour also. They knew not when they might be brought back to their friends as his son had been. He urged, that no matter what base motives might be charged, no matter what might be said, all should do their duty, and serve their Master, and in life and death have the proud consciousness of having done right.

In 1866 Mr. Wilson found time to enrich the legislative history of his country by the publication of a very valuable work, under the title of "Military Measures of the United States Congress, 1861-1863. By Henry Wilson, Chairman of the Committee on Military Affairs." It is printed in double columns royal octavo, contains eighty-eight pages, and forms a part of Frank Moore's "Rebellion Record." It presents a clear and connected view of the course and character of Congressional legislation in respect to the calling-forth and organization of the grand army of the republic. It is a record of what our patriotic Congressmen accomplished, in a military point of view, for the salvation of the State, when imperilled by the most tremendous conflict ever known. The heart of the nation was on fire; the actors were in earnest; most momentous interests were at stake; vast plans and movements were inaugurated; gigantic blows were struck, and hundreds of thousands bravely fell. The organizing and constructing power was Congress: hence the history of its herculean labors through that memorable period will ever command the attention of the world; and it is fortunate that one who shared those labors, and who knew their magnitude, was led to make of them such an impartial, vivid, and distinct record. The work is worthy of the subject and the man.


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