The Writings of Abraham Lincoln Vol. 1-7


iSpeech

The place I am thinking about for a colony is in Central America. It
is nearer to us than Liberia not much more than one fourth as far as
Liberia, and within seven days' run by steamers. Unlike Liberia, it
is a great line of travel--it is a highway. The country is a very
excellent one for any people, and with great natural resources and
advantages, and especially because of the similarity of climate with
your native soil, thus being suited to your physical condition. The
particular place I have in view is to be a great highway from the
Atlantic or Caribbean Sea to the Pacific Ocean, and this particular
place has all the advantages for a colony. On both sides there are
harbors--among the finest in the world. Again, there is evidence of
very rich coal-mines. A certain amount of coal is valuable in any
country. Why I attach so much importance to coal is, it will afford
an opportunity to the inhabitants for immediate employment till they
get ready to settle permanently in their homes. If you take
colonists where there is no good landing, there is a bad show; and so
where there is nothing to cultivate and of which to make a farm. But
if something is started so that you can get your daily bread as soon
as reach you there, it is a great advantage. Coal land is the best
thing I know of with which to commence an enterprise. To return--you
have been talked to upon this subject, and told that a speculation is
intended by gentlemen who have an interest in the country, including
the coal-mines. We have been mistaken all our lives if we do not
know whites, as well as blacks, look to their self-interest. Unless
among those deficient of intellect, everybody you trade with makes
something. You meet with these things here and everywhere. If such
persons have what will be an advantage to them, the question is
whether it cannot be made of advantage to you. You are intelligent,
and know that success does not so much depend on external help as on
self-reliance. Much, therefore, depends upon yourselves. As to the
coal-mines, I think I see the means available for your self-reliance.
I shall, if I get a sufficient number of you engaged, have provision
made that you shall not be wronged. If you will engage in the
enterprise, I will spend some of the money intrusted to me. I am not
sure you will succeed. The government may lose the money; but we
cannot succeed unless we try, and we think with care we can succeed.
The political affairs in Central America are not in quite as
satisfactory a condition as I wish. There are contending factions in
that quarter, but it is true all the factions are agreed alike on the
subject of colonization, and want it, and are more generous than we
are here.

To your colored race they have no objection I would endeavor to have
you made the equals, and have the best assurance that you should be
the equals, of the best.

The practical thing I want to ascertain is whether I can get a number
of able-bodied men, with their wives and children, who are willing to
go when I present evidence of encouragement and protection. Could I
get a hundred tolerably intelligent men, with their wives and
children, and able to "cut their own fodder," so to speak? Can I
have fifty? If I could find twenty-five able-bodied men, with a
mixture of women and children--good things in the family relation, I
think,--I could make a successful commencement. I want you to let me
know whether this can be done or not. This is the practical part of
my wish to see you. These are subjects of very great importance,
worthy of a month's study, instead of a speech delivered in an hour.
I ask you, then, to consider seriously, not pertaining to yourselves
merely, nor for your race and ours for the present time, but as one
of the things, if successfully managed, the good of mankind--not
confined to the present generation, but as

"From age to age descends the lay
To millions yet to be,
Till far its echoes roll away
Into eternity."

The above is merely given as the substance of the President's
remarks.

The chairman of the delegation briefly replied that they would hold a
consultation, and in a short time give an answer.

The President said: Take your full time-no hurry at all.

The delegation then withdrew.

TELEGRAM TO OFFICER AT CAMP CHASE, OHIO.

WAR DEPARTMENT, WASHINGTON, D. C., August 14, 1862.

OFFICER in charge of Confederate prisoners at Camp Chase, Ohio:

It is believed that a Dr. J. J. Williams is a prisoner in your
charge, and if so tell him his wife is here and allow him to
telegraph to her.

A. LINCOLN.

TO HIRAM BARNEY.

EXECUTIVE MANSION, WASHINGTON, August 16, 1862.

HON. HIRAM BARNEY, New York:

Mrs. L. has $1000 for the benefit of the hospitals and she will be
obliged, and send the pay, if you will be so good as to select and
send her $200 worth of good lemons and $100 worth of good oranges.

A. LINCOLN.

NOTE OF INTRODUCTION.

The Secretary of the Treasury and the Commissioner of Internal
Revenue will please see Mr. Talcott, one of the best men there is,
and, if any difference, one they would like better than they do me.

August 18, 1862

A. LINCOLN

TELEGRAM TO S. B. MOODY

EXECUTIVE MANSION, WASHINGTON
August 18, 1862

S. B. MOODY, Springfield, Ill.:

Which do you prefer--commissary or quartermaster? If appointed it
must be without conditions.

A. LINCOLN.

Operator please send above for President.
JOHN HAY

TO Mrs. PRESTON.

WAR DEPARTMENT, WASHINGTON, D. C., August 21, 1862.

Mrs. MARGARET PRESTON, Lexington, Ky.:

Your despatch to Mrs. L. received yesterday. She is not well. Owing
to her early and strong friendship for you, I would gladly oblige
you, but I cannot absolutely do it. If General Boyle and Hon. James
Guthrie, one or both, in their discretion see fit to give you the
passes, this is my authority to them for doing so.

A. LINCOLN.

TELEGRAM TO GENERAL BURNSIDE OR GENERAL PARKE.

WASHINGTON, August 21.

TO GENERAL BURNSIDE OR GENERAL PARKE:

What news about arrival of troops?

A. LINCOLN.

TO G. P. WATSON.

EXECUTIVE MANSION, WASHINGTON, D. C.,
August 21, 1862.

GILLET F. WATSON, Williamsburg, Va.:

Your telegram in regard to the lunatic asylum has been received. It
is certainly a case of difficulty, but if you cannot remain, I cannot
conceive who under my authority can. Remain as long as you safely
can and provide as well as you can for the poor inmates of the
institution.

A. LINCOLN.

TO HORACE GREELEY.

EXECUTIVE MANSION, WASHINGTON,
August 22, 1862.

HON. HORACE GREELEY.

DEAR SIR:--I have just read yours of the 19th, addressed to myself
through the New York Tribune. If there be in it any statements or
assumptions of fact which I may know to be erroneous, I do not now
and here controvert them. If there be in it any inferences which I
may believe to be falsely drawn, I do not now and here argue against
them. If there be perceptible in it an impatient and dictatorial
tone, I waive it in deference to an old friend, whose heart I have
always supposed to be right.

As to the policy I "seem to be pursuing," as you say, I have not
meant to leave any one in doubt.

I would save the Union. I would save it the shortest way under the
Constitution. The sooner the national authority can be restored, the
nearer the Union will be, "the Union as it was." If there be those
who would not save the Union unless they could at the same time save
slavery, I do not agree with them. If there be those who would not
save the Union unless they could at the same time destroy slavery, I
do not agree with them. My paramount object in this struggle is to
save the Union, and is not either to save or destroy slavery. If I
could save the Union without freeing any slave, I would do it; and if
I could save it by freeing all the slaves, I would do it; and if I
could do it by freeing some and leaving others alone, I would also do
that. What I do about slavery and the colored race, I do because I
believe it helps to save this Union; and what I forbear, I forbear
because I do not believe it would help to save the Union. I shall do
less whenever I shall believe what I am doing hurts the cause, and I
shall do more whenever I shall believe doing more will help the
cause. I shall try to correct errors when shown to be errors; and I
shall adopt new views so fast as they shall appear to be true views.
I have here stated my purpose according to my view of official duty,
and I intend no modification of my oft expressed personal wish that
all men, everywhere, could be free.

Yours,

A. LINCOLN.

TELEGRAM TO GOVERNOR YATES.

WAR DEPARTMENT, WASHINGTON, D.C., August 13.1862. 8 A.M.

HON. R. YATES, Springfield, Ill.:

I am pained to hear that you reject the service of an officer we sent
to assist in organizing and getting off troops. Pennsylvania and
Indiana accepted such officers kindly, and they now have more than
twice as many new troops in the field as all the other States
together. If Illinois had got forward as many troops as Indiana,
Cumberland Gap would soon be relieved from its present peril. Please
do not ruin us on punctilio.

A. LINCOLN.

TELEGRAM TO GOVERNOR RAMSEY.

EXECUTIVE MANSION, August 27, 1862

GOVERNOR RAMSEY, St. Paul, Minnesota:

Yours received. Attend to the Indians. If the draft cannot proceed,
of course it will not proceed. Necessity knows no law. The
government cannot extend the time.

A. LINCOLN.

TELEGRAM TO GENERAL G. B. McCLELLAN.

WASHINGTON CITY, August 27, 1862 4 P.M.

MAJOR-GENERAL McCLELLAN, Alexandria, Virginia:

What news from the front?

A. LINCOLN.

TELEGRAM TO GENERAL A. E. BURNSIDE.

August 27, 1862 4.30 p.m.

MAJOR-GENERAL BURNSIDE, Falmouth, Virginia:

Do you hear anything from Pope?

A. LINCOLN.

TELEGRAM TO GENERAL A. E. BURNSIDE.

August 28, 1862. 2.40 P. M.

MAJOR-GENERAL BURNSIDE, Falmouth, Virginia:

Any news from General Pope?

A. LINCOLN

TELEGRAM TO COLONEL HAUPT.

August 28, 1862. 2.40 p. m.

COLONEL HAUPT, Alexandria, Virginia:

Yours received. How do you learn that the rebel forces at Manassas
are large and commanded by several of their best generals?

A. LINCOLN,

TELEGRAM TO GENERAL A. E. BURNSIDE.

WASHINGTON, D. C., August 29, 1862. 2.30 P.M.

MAJOR-GENERAL BURNSIDE, Falmouth, Virginia:

Any further news? Does Colonel Devon mean that sound of firing was
heard in direction of Warrenton, as stated, or in direction of
Warrenton Junction?

A. LINCOLN

TELEGRAM TO GENERAL G. B. McCLELLAN.

WASHINGTON, August 29, 1862. 2.30 p.m.

MAJOR-GENERAL McCLELLAN

What news from direction of Manassas Junction?
What generally?

A. LINCOLN.

TELEGRAM TO GENERAL G. B. McCLELLAN.

WASHINGTON, August 29, 1862. 4.10 P.M.

MAJOR-GENERAL McCLELLAN:
Yours of to-day just received. I think your first alternative--to
wit, "to concentrate all our available forces to open communication
with Pope"--is the right one, but I wish not to control. That I now
leave to General Halleck, aided by your counsels.

A. LINCOLN.

TELEGRAM TO COLONEL HAUPT.

WAR DEPARTMENT, WASHINGTON, D. C.,
August 30, 1862. 10.20 A.M.

COLONEL HAUPT Alexandria, Virginia:

What news?

A. LINCOLN.

TELEGRAM TO COLONEL HAUPT.

WAR DEPARTMENT, August 30, 1862. 3.50 P.M.
COLONEL HAUPT, Alexandria, Virginia

Please send me the latest news.

A. LINCOLN.

TELEGRAM TO GENERAL BANKS.

August 30, 1862. 8.35 P.M.

MAJOR-GENERAL BANKS, Manassas Junction, Virginia:

Please tell me what news.

A. LINCOLN.

TELEGRAM TO GENERAL J. T. BOYLE.

WAR DEPARTMENT, August 31, 1862.

GENERAL BOYLE, Louisville, Kentucky:

What force, and what the numbers of it, which General Nelson had in
the engagement near Richmond yesterday?

A. LINCOLN.

ORDER TO GENERAL H. W. HALLECK.

WASHINGTON, D. C., September 3, 1862.

Ordered, That the general-in-chief, Major-General Halleck,
immediately commence, and proceed with all possible despatch; to
organize an army, for active operations, from all the material within
and coming within his control, independent of the forces he may deem
necessary for the defense of Washington when such active army shall
take the field.

By order of the President:

EDWIN M. STANTON,
Secretary of War.

[Indorsement.]

Copy delivered to Major-General Halleck, September 3, 1862,
at 10 p.m.

E. D. TOWNSEND,
Assistant-Adjutant General.

TELEGRAM TO GENERAL H. G. WRIGHT.

WAR DEPARTMENT, WASHINGTON, D. C.,
September 7, 1862.

GENERAL WRIGHT, Cincinnati, Ohio:

Do you know to any certainty where General Bragg is? May he not be
in Virginia?

A. LINCOLN.

TELEGRAM TO GENERAL J. T. BOYLE.

WAR DEPARTMENT, WASHINGTON, D. C.,
September 7, 1862.

GENERAL BOYLE, Louisville, Kentucky:

Where is General Bragg? What do you know on the subject?

A. LINCOLN.

TELEGRAM TO GENERAL J. E. WOOL.

WAR DEPARTMENT, WASHINGTON, D.C.

September 7, 1862.

MAJOR-GENERAL Wool, Baltimore:

What about Harper's Ferry? Do you know anything about it? How
certain is your information about Bragg being in the valley of the
Shenandoah?

A. LINCOLN.

TELEGRAM TO GENERAL G. B, McCLELLAN.

WASHINGTON, September 8, 1862. 5 P.M.

MAJOR-GENERAL McCLELLAN, Rockville, Maryland:

How does it look now?

A. LINCOLN.

TELEGRAM TO GENERAL D. C. BUELL.

WAR DEPARTMENT, WASHINGTON,
September 8, 1862. 7.20 P.M.

GENERAL BUELL:

What degree of certainty have you that Bragg, with his command, is
not now in the valley of the Shenandoah, Virginia?

A. LINCOLN.

TELEGRAM TO T. WEBSTER.

WASHINGTON, September 9, 1862.

THOMAS WEBSTER, Philadelphia:

Your despatch received, and referred to General Halleck, who must
control the questions presented. While I am not surprised at your
anxiety, I do not think you are in any danger. If half our troops
were in Philadelphia, the enemy could take it, because he would not
fear to leave the other half in his rear; but with the whole of them
here, he dares not leave them in his rear.

A. LINCOLN.

TELEGRAM TO GENERAL G. B. McCLELLAN.

WAR DEPARTMENT, WASHINGTON CITY, September 10, 1862. 10.15 AM.

MAJOR-GENERAL McCLELLAN, Rockville, Maryland:

How does it look now?

A. LINCOLN.

TO GOVERNOR CURTIN.

WAR DEPARTMENT, WASHINGTON, D.C.,

September 11, 1862.

HIS EXCELLENCY ANDREW G. CURTIN, Governor of Pennsylvania,
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

SIR:--The application made to me by your adjutant general for
authority to call out the militia of the State of Pennsylvania has
received careful consideration. It is my anxious desire to afford,
as far as possible, the means and power of the Federal Government to
protect the State of Pennsylvania from invasion by the rebel forces;
and since, in your judgment, the militia of the State are required,
and have been called upon by you, to organize for home defense and
protection, I sanction the call that you have made, and will receive
them into the service and pay of the United States to the extent they
can be armed, equipped, and usefully employed. The arms and
equipments now belonging to the General Government will be needed for
the troops called out for the national armies, so that arms can only
be furnished for the quota of militia furnished by the draft of nine
months' men, heretofore ordered. But as arms may be supplied by the
militia under your call, these, with the 30,000 in your arsenal, will
probably be sufficient for the purpose contemplated by your call.
You will be authorized to provide such equipments as may be required,
according to the regulations of the United States service, which,
upon being turned over to the United States Quartermaster's
Department, will be paid for at regulation prices, or the rates
allowed by the department for such articles. Railroad transportation
will also be paid for, as in other cases. Such general officers will
be supplied as the exigencies of the service will permit.

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