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Civil War Harper's Weekly, April 6, 1861

The April 6, 1861 edition of Harper's Weekly featured a portrait and biography of William H. Seward, secretary of state for President Lincoln.  it also featured interesting pictures and articles about Ft. Pickens, and other Civil War news of the day. Newspaper thumbnails will take you to a large readable versions of the page.


Secretary Seward

Secretary William H. Seward

1860 Census With Slaves

The Wyandotte

The Wyandotte

Ft. Pickens

Union Flag Flying over Ft. Pickens

April War News

Virginia Sketches


Scenes in Virginia

State Seals





APRIL 6, 1861.]



as I dressed, made the same mistakes in his reading at rehearsal, till I got him to put a large red wafer on each of his shins, and then at that rehearsal (which was the last) I went in front, Sir, to the back of the pit, and whenever his reading brought him into profile, I called out 'I don't see no wafers !' And at night his reading was lovely."

Mr. Waldengarver smiled at me, as much as to say " A faithful dependent—I overlook his folly ;" and then said aloud, " My view is a little classic and thoughtful for them here ; but they will improve, they will improve."

Herbert and I said together, Oh, no doubt they would improve.

"Did you observe, gentlemen," said Mr. Waltlengarver, "that there was a man in the gallery who endeavored to cast derision on the service —I mean, the representation ?"

We basely replied that we rather thought we !lad noticed such a man. I added, "He was drunk, no doubt."

"Oh dear no, Sir," said Mr. Wopsle, " not drunk. His employer would see to that, Sir. His employer would not allow him to be drunk."

"You know his employer ?" said I.

Mr. Wopsle shut his eyes, and opened them again; performing both ceremonies very slowly. " You must have observed, gentlemen," said he, " an ignorant and a blatant ass, with a rasping throat, and a countenance expressive of low malignity, who went through—I will not say sustained—the role (if I may use a French expression) of Claudius King of Denmark. That is his employer, gentlemen. Such is the profession !"

Without distinctly knowing whether I should have been more sorry for Mr. Wopsle if he had been in despair, I was so sorry for him as it was, that I took the opportunity of his turning round to have his braces put on—which jostled us out at the door-way—to ask Herbert what he thought of having him home to supper ? Herbert said he thought it would be kind to do so ; therefore I invited him, and he went to Barnard's with us, wrapped up to the eyes, and we did our best for him, and he sat until two o'clock in the morning, reviewing his success and developing his plans. I forget in detail what they were, but I have a general recollection that he was to begin with reviving the Drama, and to end with crushing it ; inasmuch as his decease would leave it utterly bereft and without a chance or hope.

Miserably I went to bed after all, and miser-ably thought of Estella, and miserably dreamed that my expectations were all canceled, and that I had to give my hand in marriage to Herbert's Clara, or play Hamlet to Miss Havisham's Ghost, before twenty thousand people without knowing twenty words of it.



ON Friday, 22d, in the United States Senate, Senator Hale offered a resolution that the Senate proceed to an election of Sergeant-at-Arms and door-keepers. It was laid over. A resolution directing the payment of extra compensation to clerks of committees was discussed, and rejected. Senator Douglas's resolution calling for information as to the designs of the administration with reference to the Southern forts was then taken up, and Senator Bayard concluded his remarks in favor of recognizing the independence of the Confederate States. He was followed by Senator Howe, of Wisconsin, in opposition to the resolution. Before Senator Howe had concluded the Senate went into executive session, and confirmed appointments.

On Saturday 23d, in the Senate, the Vice-President having signified his intention to be absent during the remainder of the session, on motion of Senator Hale, Senator Foot, of Vermont, was chosen President pro tempore. Senator Foot returned his thanks for the honor in appropriate terms. Senator Sherman, the newly-elected Senator from Ohio, was qualified and took his seat. The resolution of Senator Hale, to go into an election for Sergeant-at-Arms and door-keepers was then taken up. The Democrats opposed this first attempt to bestow the offices of the Senate upon political partisans with warmth and spirit, and succeeded in postponing the election. The Senate then went into executive session, and confirmed a number of appointments.

On Monday, 25th, in the Senate, Senator Hale's resolution for an election of subordinate officers was again laid over. Senator Powell offered a resolution calling for copies of Major Anderson's dispatches to the War Department during his command at Fort Sumter. The remainder of the session was occupied in discussing Mr. Douglas's resolution calling for information relative to the policy of the administration with reference to the seceded States.

On Tuesday, 26th, in the Senate, the debate on Senator Douglas's resolution, calling for information as to the policy of the administration with reference to the seceded States, was resumed, and continued mainly by Senators Douglas and Breckinridge, who discussed the issues involved in the Kansas question and the present troubles of the nation. Finally, Senator Douglas's resolution was laid on the table by a vote of 23 against 11. Senator Breckinridge and Senator Clingman then offered resolutions, to the effect that the Senate recommend the withdrawal of the Federal troops from the limits of the Confederate States. They were laid over for future consideration, and the Senate vent into executive session and confirmed a number of appointments.

On Wednesday, 27th, in the Senate a message was received from the President declining to communicate the dispatches received from Major Anderson, the commander at Fort Sumter, as their publication would at this time be inexpedient. A long debate then ensued upon the question of taking up Senator Breckinridge's resolution advising the withdrawal of the Federal troops from the seceded States. Upon taking the question the vote stood 19 to 10. As there was not a quorum, the subject was dropped, and the Senate went into executive session, and in the course of a couple of hours confirmed a large number of appointments.

On Thursday, 28th, in the Senate, Senator Trumbull offered a resolution declaring that in the opinion of the Senate the true way to preserve the Union is to enforce the laws of the Union; that resistance to their enforcement, whether under the name of anti-coercion or any other name, is disunion; and that it is the duty of the President to use all the means in his power to hold and protect the public property of the United States, and enforce the laws thereof, as well in the States of South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Mississippi, Alabama, Louisiana, and Texas as within the other States of the Union. Senator Trumbull desired to have a vote on the resolution, and the Democratic members expressed themselves in favor of an immediate expression of opinion on the subject. The Republicans, however, would not vote, but preferred an executive session. A motion to that effect was carried, and the Senate confirmed a large number of nominations. Subsequently, the President having no further communication to make, the Senate adjourned sine die.


The following is President Lincoln's first message to the Senate, sent in on Wednesday, 27th:


"I have received a copy of a resolution of the Senate passed on the 25th instant, requesting me, if in my opinion it is not incompatible with the public interest, to communicate to the Senate the dispatches of Major Robert Anderson to the War Department during the time he has been in command at Fort Sumter. On examination of the correspondence thus called for, I have, with the highest respect for the Senate, come to the conclusion that at the present moment the publication of it would be inexpedient.   


" WASHINGTON, March 26, 1861."


The leading secession organ, the New Orleans Delta, has the following special news from Washington, March 19:

" The Commissioners of the Confederate States have somewhat changed their policy in treating with the Cabinet here, and do not require or expect an answer from Lincoln's Administration for a week or ten days to come. Governor Roman has arrived, and today held his first conference with Messrs. Crawford and Forsyth. They have agreed to delay further action until the Fort Sumter affair is definitely settled, in accordance with the suggestion of President Davis. The Administration here are vacillating and unreliable, and are afraid of assuming responsibility. Nothing is officially known, except that Anderson is ordered to New York on recruiting service. It is reliably stated that the new ministers will be instructed to propose to England, France, and Spain, that Lincoln will guarantee the integrity of Mexico, and protect Spain in her possession of Cuba, if these governments will agree not to recognize the independence of the Confederate States. This policy has been disclosed to the Southern Commissioners, who will communicate it to Montgomery."


A dispatch dated Washington, March 27, says: Intelligence has been received by the Government from Brownsville, with dates to the 19th inst. Captain Stoneman states that seven companies, including French's battery, had embarked on board the Daniel Webster for Tortugas, Key West, and other ports. The cavalry were expected to leave on the 22d on board the Arizona, for New Orleans. The United States troops had not given up the posts.

Captain Stoneman had, in accordance with an arrangement made by General Twiggs, turned over to the Texans three hundred and fifty horses and ten six-mule teams. A few hours after there was a complete stampede of the horses, which caused great rejoicing among the soldiers.

Intelligence from Texas with recent dates states that the Indians were making sad havoc with the lives and property of the white settlers. The Indians on the frontier had been informed of the withdrawal of the United States troops, and were accordingly arranging for a general incursion.


Colonel Lamon, President Lincoln's special envoy to Fort Sumter, returned to Washington on Wednesday afternoon. The particulars of the result of his mission have not been made public, but it is known that Fort Sumter will be evacuated as soon as the vessel detailed to convey away the garrison shall reach Charleston harbor, and arrangements for their removal have been completed.


Dispatches from Washington state that the Cabinet have had under consideration the question of evacuating Fort Pickens, and there is good reason to believe that the fort will be abandoned by the Federal troops within thirty days, thus removing the last immediate cause for hostilities between the two confederacies.

Other dispatches state, on the contrary, that the fort will he reinforced.


Appended is the order of Major-General Bragg, cutting off supplies from the United States fleet off Pensacola:


"The Commanding General learns with surprise and regret that some of our citizens are engaged in the business of furnishing supplies of fuel, water, and provisions to the armed vessels of the United States now occupying a threatening appearance off this harbor.

"That no misunderstanding may exist on this subject, it is announced to all concerned that this traffic is strictly forbidden, and all such supplies, which may be captured in transit to said vessels, or to Fort Pickens, will be confiscated.

"The more effectually to enforce this prohibition, no boat or vessel will be allowed to visit Fort Pickens or any of the United States naval vessels without special sanction.

" Colonel John H. Forney, Acting Inspector-General, will organize an efficient Harbor Police for the enforcement of this order. By command of

"Brigadier-General BRAXTON BRAGG. "ROBERT C. WOOD, Jun., Asst. Adjt. Gen."


The latest intelligence from California renders probable the existence of a disunion conspiracy among Southern officers of the army there, in concert with a gang of desperate adventurers calling themselves "Knights of the Golden Circle." The loyalty of the mass of the people, however, is said to be proof against the machinations of the traitors.


The Montgomery (Alabama) Advertiser of the 19th ult. has the following respecting the Tariff Bill of the Southern republic:

"As there is general misapprehension in regard to the Tariff Bill having passed the Congress of the Confederate States, we take this occasion to inform the public that the bill did not pass. The committee drafted the Tariff Bill, which was ordered to be published, in order that it might be examined and discussed, and its merits or demerits thoroughly understood before the final passage of a bill on this important subject. But by some means the impression got out that the bill had been adopted by the Congress, and it was at once telegraphed and sent over the country as a law of the Confederacy. This, however, as we have stated, proves to be an error."


The St. Louis Republican, of the 23d says: "Every day our importers of foreign merchandise are receiving, by way of New Orleans, very considerable quantities of goods, duty free. The goods are landed at the port of New Orleans—no Custom-house notice is taken of them—no bonds are executed for the payment of duties on their arrival there; and on many articles the saving of one half the duty only, would afford a handsome profit. If this thing is to become permanent, there will be an entire revolution in the course of trade, and New York will suffer terribly. Our merchants have capital enough to justify them in making their purchases in Europe, and shipping to New Orleans, and in that city, because of the difference in the tariff, goods can be bought cheaper than in New York. With these advantages, we shall be able to sell cheaper than any other city in the Valley of the Mississippi."


The Charleston Mercury concludes an editorial on "Direct Trade," with the following significant language: " There is but one solitary stumbling-block in the way of direct trade. A reconstruction of the Slave States with any of the Northern, Free, importing States, will at once, in our judgment, strike " direct trade" to the ground. New York has the track. She has the accumulated capital, and she has the custom. Nor can any possible efforts of the South divert her trade from her, except through the operation of two distinct nationalities, This will do it, as we have shown, most effectually. And nothing else will. Any political connection with New York will again bind us, very vassals in commerce, at the wheels of her triumphal car. Her rod will again be over us ; and, with her accumulated capital and established business, no power can arrest it. Let us look well to this matter in the future. There are specks upon the Southern horizon that ere long may become dark and muttering clouds. We fear reconstruction on the basis of the new Constitution."


The New Orleans Crescent continues to depict the terrible things which privateers might accomplish for the South. It says : "With a tolerably accurate knowledge of what is going on, and deliberately weighing all the circumstances, we conclude that, at the lowest estimate, seven hundred and fifty swift-sailing, stanch, substantial vessels, fully equipped, carrying, on an average, four mighty guns apiece, can be put afloat in four months to wage war upon Northern commerce, blockade Northern ports, cripple Northern strength, and destroy Northern property. We are sure that two hundred can be obtained in a very, very few days —and they will come from the especial home of mock philanthropy and false religion, in Yankee land. This, however, is not our affair."


The United States mail steamship Bienville, Captain E. D. Bulloch, was on Saturday morning taken possession of by the Revenue Department, for an alleged violation of the revenue law, in bringing a cargo from New Orleans without the regular certified manifests. The cargo is now being discharged, and the question submitted to the Treasury Department at Washington.


A Southern paper tells of a young lady who was caught in a disagreeable predicament while on her knees at church. The fair girl wore fashionable high-heeled shoes; kneeling on both knees, these heels of course stuck out at right angles, and in this position the highest hoop of her new-fangled skirt caught over them, and thus rendered it impossible for her to raise herself or straighten her limbs. The more she struggled the tighter she was bound ; so she was constrained to call for help. This was immediately, if not scientifically, rendered by a young man in the same seat; and when the next prayer was made, she merely inclined her head on the back of the front pew—thinking, no doubt, that she was not in praying costume.


It seems that Mr. Mason's brother-in-law, Colonel Cooper, who resigned the office of Adjutant-General of the United States, has received the appointment to the corresponding position at Montgomery.

George W. Lane, a Unionist, has been nominated by the President as United States judge in Alabama.

Charles Francis Adams is the sixth citizen of Massachusetts who has been selected as American Minister at the British Court. John Adams was the first Minister to England after the peace of 1783. He was recognized by George III. in 1785. John Quincy Adams was the Resident Minister in 1515 and 1816. He returned early in 1S17 to take the post of Secretary of State under Monroe, which office he held eight years. Mr. Everett was appointed Minister to England in 1541, George Bancroft in 1846, and Abbott Lawrence in 1849. The newly appointed Minister was a lad of eight years when he accompanied his parents to England, and it has always been said that he was obliged to fight his English school-fellows in defense of the honor of America.

Married, at Amagansette, Long Island, on the 18th ult., Sylvester Pharaoh, Grand Sachem of the Montauk tribe of Indians, to Mrs. Jerusha, daughter of the late Ephraim Pharaoh, and widow of the late General Putnam, of the same tribe. This is believed to have been the first marriage between members of the tribe (now reduced to some fifteen or eighteen individuals all told) that was ever solemnized by a clergyman.

Schuyler Colfax and John Sherman contemplate an over-land tour to California on the first coach under the new mail contract over the central route. It is expected to start the 15th of June.

The Fremont (Ohio') Democrat says that, at the recent Post-Office election in Republic, Seneca County, Mrs. Melter, a stanch Democratic lady, was the successful candidate. There were four Republican candidates of the male persuasion, whose chagrin over the result may be well imagined.

M. Du Chaillu made an address before the Royal Geographical Society in London, at its last meeting, upon his African explorations, and exhibited some of the new animals discovered by him. At the conclusion of the address, Professor Owen, the eminent naturalist, said that natural history had never received a more remarkable acquisition than had been imparted that evening.

The Troy Times says that General Wool is confined to his residence in that city by sickness., It is probably a renewal of his Washington attack. His anxiety in respect to public affairs, and the constant excitement through which he has lately passed, has rendered the attacks of disease more severe than they otherwise would be.

Several young ladies, and young men in female apparel, residing in the neighborhood of Livermore, Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, were recently taken before a magistrate, upon the complaint of a young man residing in the town, who alleged that the defendants, while returning from a prayer-meeting, threw him down, and having daubed him with tar, applied feathers. The young ladies stated that he had made use of offensive language concerning them. The matter was arranged by the payment of a small fine and costs.

The ex-King and Queen of Naples will take up their residence in the Castle of Bauz, near Lichtenfels, in Bavaria. This estate, situated at a short distance from Munich, and once belonging to the old abbey of that name, is one of the finest monuments of Gothic art. It belongs to Duke Maximilian of Bavaria, the father of the fugitive queen.

The Rev. Joshua Taylor died in Portland, Maine, on the 20th ult., after an illness of several years. He was in the 94th year of his age. Father Taylor (as he was universally called) was for many years a minister of the Methodist denomination, in his early life traveling in the connection through the rough circuits of Maine, and in later years officiating as a local preacher. He was also an acceptable teacher of youth in Portland for many years. He was chosen Elector of President and Vice-President in that District in 1824, on the John Quincy Adams ticket, after a hard contest—his competitor being the late Judge Preble, whose predilections were for William H. Crawford.

A desperate character, named Bouve, was hung at Omaha, N. T., a few days ago, in accordance with the formalities of Lynch law. He stated in his confession that there was a regularly organized gang of thieves extending from various points on the Missouri to the mountains, and if present troubles continued to such an extent as to draw the troops from the frontier forts, they would organize into a grand guerrilla band and sweep the plains.

Hon. W. L. Yancey has been presented a gold-mounted gutta percha cane by his lady friends in Montgomery. Upon the head of the cane is engraved a crescent of golden stars, in number corresponding with the Confederate States; and in the centre is inscribed: "Hon. Win. L. Yancey—from the Mothers and Daughters of Montgomery, Ala."

The statue of Eve, executed by the late Mr. Bartholomew, an artist of Hartford, has been received in that city, and is now on exhibition at the Athenaeum, with nearly twenty of his other works.

Patrick Welsh, an Irishman, who lives in St. Louis, killed his wife a few nights since by ramming a poker down her throat. Afterward he gave his mother-in-law, who is a decrepit old woman, a severe beating because she censured him for his outrageous cruelty.



THE London Times discusses the Morrill Tariff bill at some length, and pronounces it an extravagant and impolitic bill, which, if passed by Congress, would amount to virtual prohibition, and effectually prevent the importation into the States of English, French, and Belgian manufactures.

All the English papers denounce the Morrill tariff, and declare that if the law goes into operation the blunders of the statesman will be rectified by the hardihood of the smuggler. An important article upon this subject appears in the London Times of the 12th ult.


A feeling akin to consternation pervaded a portion of the iron trade on 'Change in Wolverhampton, at the intelligence that the Morrill Tariff would, in all probability, become law. If the bill should receive the signature of the President, its effects would be most disastrous to the iron trade in Great Britain, inasmuch as scarcely any iron of British make can, with such a duty as that proposed, find any sale in the American markets.


A Plymouth (English) paper states that it has received reliable information to the effect that the murder at Road House, committed in May of last year, has been confessed by Miss Constance Kent, the sister of the murdered child. The report requires confirmation.



The Senate have finally adopted an address in response to the Emperor's speech by 1200 to 3 votes.

Independent members of the Corps Legislatif had proposed various liberal amendments to the Address ; calling, among other things, for the repeal of the law of public safety, freedom of the Press, etc. The debate would commence on the 11th.

The Budget for 1862 had been submitted to the Legislature. The expenditures are estimated at nearly eighty million pounds sterling; the receipts show a surplus of about half a million. The War Department shows an in-creased expenditure of over a million sterling.


The commercial article of the Paris Corstitutionnel, of March 3, says: "If the Morrill Tariff should pass Congress, as appears likely, exportations from France, En-gland, and Germany to the Northern States would receive a severe check, and, nolens volens, European commerce would incline to fraternize with the South in spite of its slavery institution and principles." .


The Empress Eugenie is in a state of perpetual terror about the condition of her soul. Her mind is tottering. At one moment she is for setting out on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, at another she is absorbed in all the mysteries of spirit rappings, then the Emperor finds her in a state of nervous affection, as if life were an absolute bur-den to her. The priests have told her that Providence has assigned to her a grand role. It was for this that she was rescued in that terrible hour of agony when it became a question whether the Caesarian operation must not be per-formed, and it is for this she lives at the present hour. But the poor soul is fairly bewildered with all that is told her; and while she loves the Emperor and her little child with her whole strength, she is in doubt whether she she ought not to desert both—throne and all—for the sake of the sacred Vicar of Christ.


It is asserted that, although all the chief offenders in the Mires case have been extricated from their difficulties by the Court, a few scape-goats will be sacrificed. On dit, that M. Collet-Meygret, Receiver-General of the Department of the Jura, has been dismissed, and that the son of a man of high standing at Court has been politely re-quested to resign his lucrative post at the Ministry of Public Works. It is also currently reported that M. Mocquard, the Emperor's Secretary, is about to retire from public life.


CONSOLIDATION OF THE KINGDOM OF ITALY. A telegraphic dispatch from Turin, dated 13th, states that on that day the citadel of Messina surrendered to the Sardinians. In the Italian Chamber of Deputies, Zanolini, President by seniority, made a speech in which he ex-pressed the hope that Rome was about to be made the capital of Italy, and that the deliverance of Venice was approaching. He also eulogized Garibaldi. Ratazza, the chosen President of the Chamber, in his speech on taking the chair, applauded the speeches of Prince Napoleon and M. Von Vincke, praised Garibaldi, and expressed confidence in the solution of the questions of Rome and Venice.


The Pope, according to the Monde, an undoubted authority on the subject, is beginning to discover that the hour of his downfall is at hand. An enthusiastic young French-man recently had an audience to offer his sword to his Holiness. The Pope told him it was useless to attempt to defend a cause already lost. To the Archbishop of Rennes, who has just returned from the Holy City, he stated that the temporal power would, ere many weeks had elapsed, be absorbed by the King of Piedmont. He trusted, how-ever, that a cottage might be found at Rome or Civita Vecchia, where, under the protection of the French bayonets, he would be allowed to give the faithful an example of humility and resignation to the Divine will. The time would soon come when revolution would pull down the idol it had raised, and when the Pope would return to the Vatican, and all the provinces he had been robbed of would be re-stored to the Holy See.



The following extraordinary story comes from Berne, under date of March 5:

An English gentleman, Captain L—, of the British army, met his death here last night in the most dreadful manner. Captain L--=, after supping with some friends, took a walk through the city in company with three other Englishmen. As the bear-pit lay in their way, the party went, for pastime, to look at the bears. This pit was separated into two compartments, in one of which was the he-bear, and in the other the female and several cubs. While bending over the railings watching the animals, Captain L— overbalanced himself, and fell over into that part of the pit in which the old bear was confined, breaking his arm in the fall. One hour elapsed before any assistance was obtained and brought to the spot. Efforts were then made to extricate the unfortunate man from his perilous position by means of hoisting him up with ropes. It is remarkable that up to this time the old bear, although the most savage of the family, and therefore placed in a separate compartment, had not attempted to injure the young man. But this state of things was not to last long. At the moment when he was being hoisted out of the pit, and had reached half-way up, the bear became savage and tore him down into the pit again. A horrible struggle then ensued, which, after nearly half an hour's duration, resulted in Captain L—'s being killed by the ferocious beast. One of the party of Englishmen would have jumped into the pit to his friend's aid had he not been forcibly restrained by the by-standers. Great indignation is ex-pressed by the inhabitants of Berne that no aid came from the quarter whence it ought to have been rendered, even at the risk of life. A sentinel was posted at about thirty paces from the pit, and I understand that a searching investigation has been instituted into this man's conduct.



The funeral rites of those who fell during the recent disturbances in Warsaw were conducted with great regularity. The whole population became mourners on the occasion. Meanwhile order appears to have been completely restored, in the main owing to the exertions of the citizens themselves. The Polish officials are said to have resigned their places in is body. The streets, after the conclusion of the funeral ceremonies, were completely crowded with spectators, but neither police nor military were to be seen. The citizens themselves took care of the preservation of public peace.



The Paris papers publish telegraphic announcements from Beyrout, which state that the Christians of Damascus are again undergoing insults and provocations from the Mussulmans. Consular reports, it is said, confirm the fears that the Christians are in serious danger.



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