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Robert E. Lee Portrait
CAPTAIN STRONG'S ADVENTURE.
THE scene depicted in the
spirited illustration on the
preceding page is described in the following
WASHINGTON, September 10, 1861.
To the Editor of Harper's Weekly:
I herewith forward you an
excellent photograph of Captain William E. Strong, Company F (Belle City
Rifles), Second Regiment Wisconsin Volunteers, taken by Mr. John Golden,
Whitehurst's Gallery, this city.
While on duty extending our line
of pickets, three miles northwest of
Chain Bridge, on Friday last, Captain Strong
was taken prisoner. As he neared the river he left three men while, according to
the orders of Major Larrubee, he reconnoitred, preparatory to assigning them
positions. Having proceeded about a quarter of a mile without discovering the
slightest trace of the enemy, he returned by a slightly different route to avoid
the rough road he had passed over, when he suddenly was surrounded by six rebel
pickets—two cavalry and four infantry. The Captain surrendered; and while they
marched him about twenty rods, amused themselves by applying the choicest
epithets, and promising themselves the pleasure of a hanging bee. The Captain
wondered they did not disarm him, but still did not see any way of escape until
one of them, noticing his splendid pair of revolvers, said they would relieve
him of them. "Certainly, gentlemen," said the Captain, drawing them from his
belt behind him, and cocking them silently; "here they are!" As he said the
words he fired each, and two men fell dead at his feet, while he wheeled and
secured cover in some thick bushes, eluding the immediate pursuit of all except
two bullets, one of which pierced his canteen, the other, a small round pistol
ball, passing through his left cheek and coming out of his mouth, without
injuring a single tooth, but slightly cutting his tongue !
Emerging from the cover of the
thicket, he was headed off by one of the mounted men, who presented his carbine
close to the Captain's breast. Here the young man's presence of mind (or natural
shrinking) saved him; for as the horseman fired he suddenly wheeled, the charge
penetrating his coat, vest, and shirt (discoloring the buttons), and slightly
grazing his body. The rider's horse bounding forward at this moment, Captain
Strong returned the compliment, putting a bullet in the rebel's shoulder, and
had the satisfaction of seeing him fall from his horse, one foot remaining in
the stirrup, his head striking the ground and stumps every time the affrighted
horse jumped. In a moment more he was met by some of the picket, who heard the
firing, completely exhausted from the uneven contest and the loss of blood from
I have learned the following
particulars of Captain Strong. He was born in Granville, New York, and was but
twenty years of age on the 10th day of last August. For many years he has
resided at Racine, Wisconsin, where his father died about four weeks since. Two
years since he was spending a few days at Andover with his uncle before entering
the Cambridge Law School. Here, while walking a rope at the gymnasium, he fell,
breaking all his ribs on the left side, and his right arm near the wrist. From
this he has never fully recovered. Without entering at Cambridge he returned to
Racine as soon as able, prosecuting his law studies in the office of Messrs.
Strong & Fuller, and on the memorable 16th of April was admitted to the bar of
Racine County. On the 17th, hearing of the
fall of Sumter, he opened an enlisting office,
and on the same day his company—the "Belle City Rifles"—was full. At
Bull Run he fought bravely, and narrowly
escaped from being killed, one ball carrying off his cap, another cutting his
sword-belt; and though remaining at the head of his men until the retreat, from
exposure, mortification, and pain from his old internal injuries, he had to be
carried from the field more dead than alive.
Captain Strong is reckoned one of
the best shots in the West—as the records of the " Chicago Audubon Club" will
show, and as many of his regiment who saw him shoot while in camp at Madison
will attest—for they say he carefully laid his double-barreled gun on the ground
about ten paces in front of him, threw two pigeons up in the air, turned a
"hand-spring," seized his piece, and brought down both birds!
I can not close this narrative
without paying a tribute due to the virtue of temperance. Like our lamented
Ellsworth, Captain Strong never drinks intoxicating liquors.
Truly yours, S. WHITELEY.
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 28, 1861.
THE PLAN OF THE CAMPAIGN.
WE believe we may say that the
Plan of the autumn and winter campaign has been determined, and that the leading
generals are apprised of the parts they are to play in it. It involves
operations of so extensive a character as to be without parallel in history, and
to be morally certain of effecting their object—namely, the suppression of the
rebellion before next spring.
The Plan presumes that the rebels
will remain inactive at their present posts. Should
General Beauregard attack
Washington, a change in the programme might be the result, as it is confidently
anticipated that he would meet with an overwhelming defeat, which would probably
precipitate matters. Again, should General Johnston undertake an aggressive
Cairo, the Mississippi expedition might proceed to work more
speedily than is now intended. It is not believed, however, that either of these
contingencies will occur. At Washington as at Cairo, an attacking force would
fight at such enormous disadvantage that it is not supposed the experienced
leaders of the rebel army would wantonly run the risk of a forward movement.
Assuming, then, that the rebels
pursue the wisest course, and wait to be attacked in their intrenchments, we
have reason to believe that, in the first or second week of October, the
campaign will be simultaneously commenced on the coast, in the vicinity of
Fortress Monroe, at
Harper's Ferry, in Kentucky, on the
Mississippi, and in the western portion of Missouri.
We believe that three naval
expeditions are being fitted out in New England and New York. The camps at
Hempstead and Scarsdale are to furnish men for two of them ; the third will
recruit 10,000 volunteers in New England. We presume we shall not be far wrong
if we predict that these expeditions will be commanded by
Burnside, and Lander. Two of them will probably operate on different points of
the Southern coast, with a view of distracting the attention of the enemy from
the line of
the Potomac : one, for instance,
may effect a landing at or near
Port Royal, South Carolina, while the other,
reinforced by the garrison of
Fort Pickens, may reopen the excellent harbor of
Pensacola to the commerce of the world. It is likely that the third, which will
consist of at least 10,000 men, and will be commanded by General Burnside, will
operate in the Chesapeake, landing so as, on one side, to flank the rebel army
on the Potomac ; and, on the other, to take
Norfolk in the rear, in case the
rebels should fall back from Manassas. All of these expeditions will be provided
with ample artillery, and the landings will be effected under cover of heavy
naval batteries. Ships, steamers, gun-boats, and launches are, we believe, being
actively prepared for this service.
Simultaneously with the departure
of these expeditions, we look for a forward movement on the part of
Banks. A glance at the map will show how
General McClellan will cooperate with
him. If the enemy resist him in force, McClellan will naturally attack Manassas
at once. If he moves on without opposition, the attack will be deferred until he
is in a position to take part in it by flanking the enemy. We have an intimation
that simultaneously with General Banks's movement, General Sickles will cross
the Potomac some twenty miles below Washington, with a view to gain a position
between Manassas and Richmond. These details, however, are of course as yet
undetermined; and the intimation is merely a shrewd guess. The main point—that
Manassas will be threatened on three sides simultaneously, while a column under
General Burnside advances to cut off the retreat of the enemy—may be regarded as
Meanwhile, further West,
Anderson may be expected, by 10th October, to have raised such an army of
Kentuckians and East Tennesseeans as to keep Tennessee effectually in check, and
to co-operate efficiently with
General Fremont, who by that time will probably
have mustered an army sufficient to beat the rebels in the neighborhood of
Springfield, Missouri, and to man a powerful expedition for the descent of the
Mississippi. We do not look for naval operations of the first importance on the
Mississippi. The fortified points on that river will naturally be assailed by
land. Corps d'armee will converge upon them from either shore, and reduce them
Hatteras was reduced, or, when the thing is practicable, with the bayonet.
The gun-boats will be useful as auxiliaries, and the river will prove valuable
for the transportation of supplies. But the fighting in the West will be done on
land. If the campaign in that region is to keep pace with that in the East, the
rebel forces under Price, or
McCulloch, or whoever has succeeded them, which are
now in possession of Springfield, Missouri, and the vicinity, must be defeated
and driven into Arkansas, or scattered altogether, before October 15. Whether
this can be achieved depends upon considerations which are only known to
Thus, if our information be
correct, the battle will have begun along the whole line, from the Atlantic to
Kansas; by the middle of October, and at least two points on the coast will be
either in possession of or under bombardment by our forces. It is believed that
the whole force employed will be not less than 350,000 men, exclusive of
reserves and of home guards in Kentucky, Maryland, and Missouri; so that at
every point attacked we shall probably outnumber the enemy. Our armies will be
well supplied, well provisioned, well drilled, well equipped, and well
commanded. Under such circumstances, it is not extravagant to expect success.
It is not reasonable to believe
that the rebel troops from the Gulf States will remain patiently under arms in
Virginia, while their homes are being assailed by expeditions from the North.
Nor is it probable that troops deficient in equipment, clothing, shoes, arms,
medicines, and supplies of all kinds—as the rebel troops are—will contend on
equal terms with a force provided with these necessaries in profusion. Lastly,
as it was proved at Bull Run, that wherever Northerners and Southerners met in a
fair field, the former were the better men, it is not likely that an inferior
Southern force will any where stand against a superior Northern force.
We therefore say that the Plan of
the campaign renders success morally certain ; for it must be remembered we are
not fighting to subjugate the South, to abolish Slavery, or to conquer
territory. Our object is merely to defeat and disperse the rebel armies which
are now overrunning the
Southern States. This done; our work is achieved.
Wherever we defeat and disperse the rebel armies the people will be invited to
exercise their privilege of electing members of Congress ; the postal facilities
will be restored to them ; they will be protected from further spoliation by the
rebel banditti, and restored to all the privileges of sovereign citizens of the
United States. The recent elections in Mary-land and Kentucky, and the late
demonstrations in North Carolina, show how gladly the change will be welcomed.
There will not be a Southern State in which a rebel ticket will stand any chance
at the polls after
Jeff Davis's armies are defeated in the field.
MR. JEFFERSON DAVIS, in his
message of the 29th April, says, that by the treaty with Great Britain after the
Revolution "the several States were each by name recognized to be independent."
The famous ninth resolution of the New York Democratic Convention echoes the
statement by way of aiding and comforting the eminent traitor. "In the treaty of
peace which the States conquered from Great Britain, the independence, not of
the nation, but of each separate State was acknowledged." In like manner, a
newspaper which supports that resolution as good patriotic doctrine undertakes
to rap the Evening Post over the knuckles for saying that the Constitution was
not adopted by the States but by the people of the United States. The Evening
Post is quite able to fight its own battles, but the question involved is
interesting to all of us.
Mr. Everett and Mr. Motley, among
the later authorities upon this subject, are quite sufficient to satisfy the
most persistent skeptic.
The first justly remarks that the
States were enumerated in the treaty for convenience; to designate what colonies
upon this continent were acknowledged to be independent. He then proceeds to
show that the
Declaration of Independence calls the people of the colonies "one
people," and quotes Charles Cotesworth Pinckney that "the separate independence
and individual sovereignty of the several States were never thought of" by the
men who made the Declaration.
But even conceding to Mr. Davis
and his friends of the Democratic Convention that the several States were
recognized as so many separate sovereign powers, what then ? How does that help
secession? Granting that they were absolutely sovereign when the Constitution
was adopted, by the terms of that instrument the people of the States abdicated
the sovereignty of the State so far as the General Government was concerned. The
question, as Mr. Everett most cogently says, is not what was the form of a
government in any State before the Constitution was adopted, but what are the
provisions of the Constitution in regard to its own supremacy.
The whole subject is so admirably
treated in Mr. Everett's address that no one should fail to make himself
familiar with it.
But "the Federal Constitution was
adopted by the States and was binding only on those that accepted it," says the
ninth resolution; and the newspaper defends the statement by quoting the seventh
article of the instrument : "The ratification of the Convention of nine States
shall be sufficient for the establishment of this Constitution between the
States ratifying the same."
But it is matter of history that
it was not adopted by the States, as such, but by the people of the States, who
thereby subordinated the States to the General Government. Moreover, to destroy
the State theory completely, the Constitution was not binding upon the people of
any one State, however unanimous the ratification, until the consent of the
people of nine had been obtained. That constituted a sufficient majority of the
people of all the States to warrant the organization and operation of the
"It appears," Mr. Everett says of
the Constitution, "not to have been entered into by the States, but to have been
ordained and established by the people of the United States, for themselves and
posterity. The States are not named in it, nearly all the characteristic powers
of sovereignty are expressly granted to the General Government, and expressly
prohibited to the States," etc., etc.
Mr. Motley still more pointedly
declares : "The Constitution was not drawn up by the States : it was not
promulgated in the name of the States : it was not ratified by the States. The
States never acceded to it, and possess no power to secede from it. It was
ordained and established over the States by a power superior to the States—by
the people of the whole land in their aggregate capacity, acting through
conventions of delegates expressly chosen for the purpose within each State,
independently of the State Governments, after the project had been framed."
The point is, that the
Constitution of the United States was framed by a Convention of the people from
all the States: it was submitted to the vote of the people of all the States :
and it was declared operative only when the people of nine States had accepted
it. But when they had accepted it, it was not a compact between them as States,
like the old Confederation—it was a supreme Government, which ignored States,
and acted directly upon the people. The expression "between the States" is
interpreted by the words of the instrument itself. It does not and can not
express a dissoluble compact. It expresses that the people living in so many
States have established a supreme law, and when you explore the terms of that
law, you find that the States have and can have, as States, no power over it
The object of Mr. Davis, of the
ninth resolution, and of the newspapers that support it, is to inculcate the
idea that the Constitution is a compact between States, and not a supreme law of
the people living in different States, and to be modified only as itself
provides. This is the question which the war will forever settle. When that is
over, we shall either be a nation or something less than a nation. The latter
will be our fate if Jefferson Davis and the ninth resolution carry the day.
" HAPPY AS A
SLAVE OF GALLIFET."
Two or three weeks ago we were
speaking of slave insurrections as one of the natural "Consequences" of the
rebellion of the masters, and alluded to the proverb "Happy as a slave of
Gallifet," which occurs in the history of the San Domingo revolt, and is
generally used to show that, while slavery may smother for a time the outbreak
manhood it degrades, yet, when
the pressure is removed, the revenge of that degradation is frightful.
This, indeed, furnishes one of
the most hopeless and heart-sickening arguments to those who insist that slavery
is irremediable. "If you free them they will rise and cut every body's throat ;
look at San Domingo!" Yes; but why not look at Jamaica? In San Domingo it was
the effort to enslave those already freed which occasioned the outbreak. In
Jamaica, where eight hundred thousand were freed, the result was effected more
peacefully than that of a ward election in New York; as tranquilly, in fact, as
an act of worship, which indeed to most of them it was. For the African blood is
not fierce. It is a mild, patient race, although like all men they may be stung
But is it I who am guilty when I
strike the hand that would sell my child or dishonor My wife ? The difficulty in
emancipation was never yet the slave, but always the master. You may say that
Jamaica does not grow so much cotton as she did with slavery. But if that mere
fact were any argument, which of course it is not, you may set it off with the
other fact that Barbadoes grows twice as much sugar without slavery. In Jamaica
it was not the slaves, but the masters, who would not adapt themselves in good
faith to the new system.
If servile insurrections are
really so frightful as we are used to say and believe, there is always an easier
way than the halter and powder and shot to repress them, and that is
emancipation. If any body prefers the San Domingo method to the Jamaica method,
let him hold fast to the system. It is only because the black is a mild,
forbearing, broken race that it has not risen behind the rebellious army, and
swept the land with fiery wrath from the Gulf to the Roanoke. Yet mild and
patient as it is, when it does rise, it rises with desperation. And then it is
likely to forget the charity which gave a pair of shoes and took away every
right of' human nature. Why should we be fools? God made them men ; and our
calling them things does not make them so. The very fear of their frightful
revenge of wrongs shows that we feel them to be men, and know what we would do
if we were they.
This is a long introduction to
the remark that the usual acceptation of the proverb '' Happy as a slave of
Gallifet" is entirely incorrect. The argument based upon the proverb is, "No
matter how kindly you treat them, even to a proverb of kindness, they will roast
you alive, for all that. Therefore, at any price, suppress their rising." The
use made of it by the Lounger was to refute the inference of the contentment of
slaves front their affection for their masters. But the truth has been pointed
out to him by a friend who refers to a communication of Mr. C. K. Whipple to the
Boston Atlas and Bee, in January, 1860, in which, apropos of a speech of Mr.
Everett's, who had also referred to the proverb as usually understood, Mr.
Whipple shows from a pamphlet before him, "The Colonial System Unveiled,"
printed at Cape Henry, San Domingo, in October, 1814, and written by the Baron
de Vastey, that the treatment of slaves upon the Gallifet plantation was so
atrocious that the proverb was only a terrible sarcasm, as a hanging halter is
called a necklace; so that to say that a man was "as happy as a slave of
Gallifet" was to call him the most miserable of men. Mr. Whipple quotes some of
the sickening details which gave rise to the saying.
It is a curious and most
interesting correction of a very serious misapprehension.
DURING the last fortnight there
have been a great many loungers at Syracuse, if one might judge front the crowds
hanging around hotel doors and swarming through the street, and especially if he
looked into that handsome hall, which has seldom been so thronged with such
eager and earnest people. At one moment, indeed, it seemed as if one lounger
Albany might hang out of the window. For in a Union Patriotic Convention,
while the crowd was humming and the Albany person was trying to speak, some one
quietly said : "This Mr. Murphy spoke a fortnight ago at a 'peace' meeting in my
neighborhood, and tried to raise a white flag."
That was an extremely doubtful
moment for Mr. Murphy. The Convention rose tumultuously, like an angry man. Mr.
Murphy stepped from the floor upon a seat, while the excited crowd pressed upon
him. The President in vain hammered and hammered. He came to the front of the
platform, and raised both hands imploringly and menacingly. But so King Canute
ordered the sea to retire. The sea of people rose around Mr. Murphy. Mr. Murphy,
after shaking his finger at the one who had mentioned the white flag, as if he
were giving him the lie, stood quietly up, occasionally bending to try to make
somebody hear. For full five moments there was wild confusion. But it was clear
enough that no harm would befall the man. The Convention was not composed of the
kind that make riots or delight in then ; and after the President—one of the
best possible presiding officers—had skillfully suggested that he had heard no
motion that the gentleman should not be allowed to speak, such a motion was
heard front a hundred lips, and the gentleman had leave to retire.
There was another gentleman who
had walked straight out of Dickens. Whatever motion was made or resolution
offered, this gentleman rose and gravely moved that it lie upon the table. His
idea of a deliberative body evidently was that it was a body which laid things
away to keep. He was incessantly running with a stone to block the wheels, but
he dropped his block in front and stopped all progress. The Convention at length
grew tired of his layings upon the table. But his courage and tenacity were
equal to the task, and he would move that it lie upon the table.
There had been a Committee sent
out. Another (Next