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"TO THINE OWN SELF BE TRUE, AND IT MUST FOLLOW, AS TUB "* NIGHT TUB DAY, THOU CAN ST NOT THEN BE FALSE TO ANY MAN." 1
BY liOH'T. A. THOMPSON & CO. P1CKKNS COURT HOUSE, S. C. SATURDAY, JANUARY 11), 1861. VOL. XII. NO. 24.
^& ILlgUT?D IPOlETiaV,
From I tic Soutliernor.
South Carolina is Free.
IIY K. n. c.
Hark ! to tlie loml noto?? swelling
O'er land and o'er tlie sen,
A joyful Ktory telling,
'.irolina's land in free!
Free from (lie coile that bound Iter?
I'reo from the tyrants cliain?
Free from (lie yoke thrown rounil her?
Froe to ascend again.
I .one star, in the arching heaven
l'roudly thy beams arise ;
Too thee if the glory given
To PlI'Xl lii/lil till* ut.*1*111 v ulfifftu.
See o'er tlie ilnrk vaults streaming,
(tinned h thy ben his along ;
Ilnrk! to the solemn inclining
That swelled in Freedom's song.
Free! let tlie liills proclaim it.
Free! let tli" mountains cry,
Free! let ilie ocenn nnmc it.
Free! Wnt'i the sound on high,
Vain nre tho tyrant's powers.
They must hcml to our stern decree;
We have. fought, nnd the day is uiirs,
I Carolina is free! is free!
Jietween (he President >j' (he ( in'feit ?S'fates
anil the Cum in ixxiiwers of South Carolina
Washington, December 28, 1800.
Sir :?We have tho lienor to transmit to
you a copy of tlio full powers from tli<> Convention
of the people of South Carolina, under
which we are " authorized and empowered to
treat with thodoverninent of the United States
for tho delivery of the forts, nm^tizinef, lighthouses,
and otlier -eal estate, with tlieir ap
purtcnanees, within the limits of South Carolina,
and also for an apportionment of the
public d''ht and for a division of all the property
held by the Covernme.nt of the United
States, of which South Carolina was recently
n member, and generally to negotiate as to all
other measures and arrangements proper to be
made and adopted in the existing relation of
the pirties, and for the, continuance of peace
an?l amity between the Commonwealth and the
(lovernniout at Washington."
In the execution of this trust, it is our tint}'
to fll I'll !<li Villi IIU U'n nrnr il.i mitk n..
copy of the Ordinance of Secession, by wliicli
the State of South Carolina has resumed the
p nvers she delegated to the Government of
the I'nited States, and has declared her perfect
sovereignty and indepeiidohce.
It would also have been our duty to have
informed you that we were ready to negotiate
with you upon all such questions as are necessarily
raised by the adoption of this Ordinance,
and that we were prepared to enter upon
this negotiation with the earnest desire to avoid
r.ll ..n.w.nna.o^.. ^IIS^S .... 1 ? i
.... umuvomiouj iiiiu immiiiv; tlMII^IUII, illdl Ml 111
inaugurate our new relations as to secure mutual
respect, general advantage, and a future
of pood will and harmony, beneficial to all tlie
Hut the events of the last twenty-four hours
ronder sueh an assurance impossible. Wo
came here the representatives of Hit authority,
which could at any time within tlie past sixty
days have taken possession of tlie forts in
Charleston harbor, but upon pledges given in
n m.'llllliir i.lmfr wrt onnnnf /ImuK*
trust to your honor rather than toils own power.
Since our arrival :m officer of the United
States acting, as wo are assured, not only
without, hut against your orders, has dismantled
one fort and occupied another, thus altering
to a most important extent the condition
of affairs under which wo came.
Until these circumstances are explained in
a manner which relieves us of nil douht as to
the spirit in which those negotiations shall he
conducted, wc are forced to suspend all discussion
as to any arrangements by which our
mutual interest might he amior.bly adjusted.
And, in conclusion, we would urge upon
you the immediate withdrawal of the troops
from the harbor of Charleston. Under pres
ent circumstances, they are a standing menace
which renders negotiation impossible, and, as
our recent experience shows, threatens speedily
to bring to n bloody issue questions which
ought to bo settled with temperance and judgment.
We have the honor to be,
Your obedient servants,
11. W. Barnwkmj, "I
.T. H. Adams, [- Commissioners.
Jambs I?. Oku, )
h -To tho l'rftsiilent of t.lm IT n i ?orl
"Washington City, Doc. 80, 1800.
Qcntlemcn:?I have had the lionor to receivo
your communication of 28th instant., together
with a copy of "your full powers of
the Convention of the People of South Carolina,"
authorizing you to treat with tho (Government
of the United States on various important
HUbjocta therein mentioned, and also a
eopy of the Ordinance, Waring date on the
20th instant, declaring that " the Union now
subsisting between South Carolina and other
States, under tho name of " the United States
of America," in hereby dissolved.
I In answer to this communication, I have to
| way, that my position, as Presidentof tho Uni
Ited Stotes, was clearly defined iu tho Messago
to Congress on the 3d instant. In thnt I
stated that, " apart from tho execution of tho
l<iws, bo far ss this may bo praoSyablo, tho
Kxqcutivo has no authority to dcoido what
shall bo the relations between the. Kodoral
Government and South Carolina. Ila. has
boon invosied with no such discretion. lie
possesses ho poijref to change tho relations hore..
to fore existing betwoon thorn, umoh Toss to
ncloiowledgo the independence of thot State.
< This wonld bo to in vest a mere KkeotfnV^
? < oflloor with the power of rccogniting a disftol
lution of the. Confederacy AiViong our thirtythree
Sovcteign Stntea. tl bear* no regetabI
laooe to the recognition of a foreign <h facto
Government involving no mich roAponaibility.
Any attempt to do this would, ori hi? pnrt, bo
* * naked act of usurpation. It is, therefore,
I Jf my duty to submit to Oongrcwi fhe whole
question in all its bearings."
Sucli is my opinion still. I could therefore
i meet you only as private gentlouicn of the
j highest character, and was entirely willing to
j communicate to Congress any proposition you
j might have, to make to that body upon the
! subject. Of this you were well aware. It
| was my earnest desire that such a disposition
miirht be made of the wholi* xnlii(w?t. !>v
gross, who alone possess the power, as to prevent
tho inauguration of a civil war between
the parties in regard to the possession of tho
Federal forts in the harbor of Charleston ;
and I therefore deeply regret, that, in your
opinion " the events of the last twenty-four
hours render this impossible."
In conclusion you urge upon me the " ini
i - < " <
iovmi.iiv tTiiiiuiii?>11 ui uie troops 11*0111 the
harbor of Charleston," Htntinj^ that " under
present circumstances they arc a standing
menace which renders negotiation impossible,
and as our rccent experience show, threatens
speedily to bring to a bloody issue questions
which ought to be settled with tcnipcruucc
1 lie reason for this change in your position
is that since your arrival in Washington, " an
officer of tho United States, acting as we (you)
ar'assured not only Without, but against your
(my) orders, has dismantled one fort and occupied
another, thus altering to a most important
extent theeondition of affairs under which
we (you) onmc." You also allege that you
came here " the Representatives of an authority
which could at any time within the past
I sixty days, have taken possession of the forts
| in Charleston harbor, but which, upon pledges
! given in a manner that we (you) cannot doubt,
I ... iciiimini to hum ui jour U"}',) "?"or rather
] than to its power."
This brings ine to a consideration of the nature
of those alledged pledges, and in what
manner they have been observed. In my
Message of the 53d of December last, I stated,
i ui regara 10 me property ot t lie I'nited States
i in South Carolina, that it " lias been pur
chased for a fair equivalent by the consent of
j the Legislature of tiie State, for the erection
I of forts, maga/.ines, arsenals, &c., and over
these t!ie authority to exercise exclusive legislation.
has been expressly granted by the
(Constitution to Congress. It is not believed
that ail}' attempt will be made to expel the
: 1 ' ni?n/l .o r ~ A- 1? *
j u ii <iiu tiur> j i'11m 11 v "ty lorcu ;
] but if in tins I .should prove to he mistaken,
t the officer in comimd of the forts has received
| orders to net strictly on the defensive. In
| such :i contingency, the responsibility fot
c inse(jucncc8 would rightfully rest upon the
j heads of the assailants."
! Tills hftim* *l?o ?
wv...n ...v vuiKiuiuii wi tin; |mi IK'.^ u 11
j Saturday, Rth December, four of the Itepre
] sentatives from South Carolina called on ine,
j and requested an interview, We had an
earnest conversation on the subject of these
I torts, and the best means of preventing a col!
lisiun between the parties, for the purpose of
| sparing the effusion of blood. 1 suggested,
for prudential reasons, that it would he best
I to put in writing what they said to me verbalj
ly. They did so accordingly, and on Monday
! niorniii". the lOili iimhmf #lii-?n
! hoiitod to nio ;i paper, sicrnod by all the Representatives
from South Carolina with asin?rK;
exception, of which the following is a copy :
" To Ifts Hxcllviicy Ihtr/ianan,
l*rr.*itlent Utiita! State*:
In compliance with our statement to you
yesterday, wo now express to you our strong
convictions that neither the constituted authorities
nor any body of the people of the State
of South Carolina, will either attack or molest
the United States forts in the harbor of Charleston
previously to the action of the Convention,
and we hope and believe not until an of
tor has been wade through an accredited representative
to negotiate for an amicable arrangement
of all matters between the Htate
and the Federal Government, provided that
no reinforcements shall be Bent into those
forts, and their relative military sMtns shall
remain as at present.
M. Ij. Uoniiam.
W. W. 13oyck.
JiAURKNCE M. KKITT.
W'axhiiu/fOH, 0//i Dirambrr, 18(50."
And here 1 must, in justico to myself, remark
tluit, nt the time the paper was presented
to me, I objected to the word "provided,"
as it might be construed into an agreement on
my part which I never would make. They
Raid that nothing wis further from their intention?they
did not so understand it, and T
should not so eonsider it. It is evident that
thev could onter into no reciprocal agreement
with me on tho subject. They did not profess
to have authority to do this, nn. were acting
in their individual character. I considered
it as nothing nmrc in effect than tho
promiso of highly honorable gentlemen to exert
their influence for tho purpose expressed.
I The event has proven that they have faith
| fully kept their promise, although I havo nov
! crninco received a Iin? from any one of them,
or from nny member of the Convention, on the
subject. ft is well known it was my determutation,
and this I freely oxprosscd, not to
| reinforce the forts in the harbor and thus proI
duce n collision, until they hud been actually
attacked, or until I had certain evidence that
they Were about to be attacked. This paper
I received most cordially, and considered it
as a happy omen that peace might still bo preserved,
and that timo might bo thus given
for reflection. This is the whole foundation
for the allflfrod tdfidfro. lint. 1 nr>fnrl in flirt
o? * n*- """ * """ *"
game manner ns I would havo done had I entered
Into a positivo nnd formal agreement
with parties capable of constructing, although
! Mich an Birrr'AinCnt. Wnnlil lif?v? Konn nn ?nu
n - ? ?J
pnrt, from the nnturo of my officio! duties, imppsaibto.
Tho world knows tlint I have never
sent any reinforcement# to tho fort* in
(tharlenten harbor, and I have certainly never
authorized any ohange fw be made in their relative
military status. Hearing upon thin
awibject, I refer yon to an order issued by the
Secretary of War, oh tho 11th Inst., to Majofcj
Anderson, but not brought to my notioo i#nttl
the 21st ingt. It U u foNotoi:
!" M< mornmlum of Vvrbnl Instructions to
Major Antfrrsou 1>V Artillery, ('oinmawl-l
| in</ Fort Moultrie, South ('aroiinn :
" You arc aware of the groat anxiety of the !
Secretary of War that a collision of the j
troops with the people of thin State shall ho
; avoided, and of his studied determination to
pursue a course with reference to the military j
force and forts in this harbor which shall |
guard against such a collision. lie has, there- |
j fore, carefully abstained from increasing the
force at this point, or taking any measures
: which might add tv> the present cxcitcd state
of the public mind, or which would throw 1
any doubt on the confidence he feels that !
South Carolina will not attempt by violence
to obtain possession of the public works or
interfere with their occupancy.
' Hut as the counsel and acts of rash and |
impulsive persons may possibly disappoint
these, expectations of the Government, he 1
(b oms it propor that you should be prepared, '
with instructions, to meet so unhappy a con- !
tingeney. lie has, therefore, directed nic j
verb-illy to give you such instructions.
" Vou arc carefully to avoid every act which j
j would needlessly tend to provoke agression, |
i and for that reason you are not, without nc* 1
! eessitv, to t :ke up any position which could !
' ?.<> #1... ? ~e .. u??:i
I v wu^uu< <1 vuv; <I.VUIII|'IIWII Ul i? IIUM11U
' attitude; but you are to hold possession of i
j the forts in this lnrhor, and if attacked you
avo to defend yourself to the last extremity. J
J " The 8iuallnes? of your force will not permit
you, perhaps, to occupy more than one of j
the three forts, but an attack on, or attempt I
to take possession of either of them, will ho |
regarded as an not of hostility, and yon may '
then nut your command into either <?f tliom
j which you m:iy deem most proper, to increase i
j its power of resistance You aro also anI
thomed to take similar steps whenever you
I have, tangible evidence of a design to proceed
j to a hostile aet. 1). I'. lilJTI.KK,
" Assistant Adjutant (ieneral."
j "Four Mour/mm, S. Deo. 11, 1800."
Ijliiio 10 111 uwuiui mil y i" mjr iuntrue r iuhn U)
Major livwll. .John 15. Floyd,
j " Secretary of War."
j These were the hist instructions transmitted
i to Major Anderson before his removal to Fort
Sumter, with as?n?rle exception, in recard to
: ' a particular which does not in any degree nf|
feet the present (question. TTnder these cirI
eumstances, it is clear that Major Anderson
[ j acted upon his own responsibility and without
| authority, unless, indeed, he had " tangible
; evidence of a desitrn to proceed to a hostile
. I ?i ~i" .1 .1
, uvv Mil IUV |MU wi til*; (lUllKIUllt'H ??I colli 11
j Carolina, which h:is not been alleged. Still
i i lie is a brave ami honorable* officer, ami jus
j tioc requires that In? .should not be uondcinn,
j ed without a fair hearing.
He this as it may, when I learned that Ma^
jor Anderson had left Fort Moultrie and proceeded
to Fort Sumter, mv first promptings
were to command him to return to his former
position, a I'd there to await the contingencies
presented in his instructions. This would
only have been done, with any degree* of safety
to the command, by the concurrence of the
South Carolina authorities. But before any
steps could possibly have been taken in this
direction, we received information that the
" I'almetto Hag floated out to the breeze at
Castle I'inckncy? nnd a lsir<ro military force
went over last night (the 27th) to Fort Moultrie."
Thus, the authorities of South Carolina,
without waiting or asking fur any explanations,
and, doubtless, believing as you have expressed
it, that the officer had aeted not only without,
hut against my orders, on the very next
day after the night when the romoval was
made, seized by a military foree, two of the
three Federal forts in the harbor of Charleston,
and have covered them under their own
flag, instead of that of the United States.?
At tins gloomy period of our history, startling I
events succeed each other rapidly.
On the very day, the 27th instant, that possession
of these two forts was taken, the Palmetto
flag was raised over the Federal Custom
House and Postoflice in Charleston, and
on the same day every officer of the Customs
?Collector, Naval Officer, Surveyor and Appraiser?resigned
their offices. And this, although
it was well known from the language
of my M eqsage, that, as nn Executive officer, i
I felt myself bound to collect the revenue at
the port of Charleston under the existing
hilVS. In tho lmvhnr nf P.liMrlnslnn ?/< ? ttinv
find three forts confronting cnoh other, over
nil of which tho Fed or 1 flag floated only four
days ago; but now, over two of them this
flag has been supplanted, wd the Palmetto
flitff boon subslitiitcd in itnstond.
It is under all those circumstances that I
am urged immediately to withdraw tho troops
t'rom the harbor of Charleston, and am informed
without this, negotiation i:i impossible.?
This I cannot do; this 1 will not do. Such
an idea was never thought of by me in any
nofeiihi.t n.rrt,nu 'v.. Ull
I ^ **. i' I?IW ' II1IU
mado in anj' communication between myself
nu<l any human being. But the inference is,
that I am bound to withdraw the troops from
the only fort remaining it: tho possession of
tho I'nited States, in the harbor of Charleston,
because tho oflficor thore in command of
all the forts, thought proper, without instructions,
toohangohis position from one of them
At tliin point of tho writing I have received
information by tolcarraph, from Captain
Humphreys, mi command of the Arsenal at
Charleston, that " it has to day (Sunday, the
aakl. \ i i-i ? * m " w' *
ih'im,) uPBii uiKc.n uy lorcc or arms." It jh
estimated that the munitions of war belonging
to tho United States in this Arsenal ; re
worth a half a million of dollars.
Comment is needless After this information,
I havfc only to i?dd, thAt whilst it is
my duty to defond Fort Sumter, as a portion
of the publio property of tho United States,
Against hostile attacks from whatever quarter
they may come, by such moans as I may
Cess for this purpose, I do not peroeive
such a dofenco can be construed into a
menace against tho city oV Charleston.
With great peraonal regard, I remain youra
very respectfully, Jamks Buchanan.
To Honorable Roukut W. li.vuNWKM,,
Jamk3 II. Adams, Jamks L. Ohii.
Washington, 1). C., January 1, 1801.
Sir :?Wo liave t lie honor to acknowledge
the receipt of your letter of the 30th December,
in reply to a note addressed by us to you
on the 28th of the same month, as Commissioners
from South Carolina.
In reference to the declaration with which
vmir n?nlv pnmni^nnnu # 1 * ?# (i nnoS?!.M?
as President of tho United States was clearly
defined in the Message to Congress on the
8d instant that you possess " no power to
change the relations heretofore existing " between
South Carolina and the States, " much
less to acknowledge the independence of
that State," and that consequently you could
meet Us only as private gentlemen of the
highest character, with an entire willingness
to communicate to Congress any proposition
we might have to make," we deem it only
necessary to say that the State of South Carlinn
having, in the exercise of that great
right of self-government which underlies
all our political organizations, declared herself
sovereign and independent, we, as her
representatives, felt no special solicitude as
Satisfied that the State hail simply exercised
hor unquestionable ri?rht, we were prepared,
iu order to reach substantial good, to
waive the formal considerations which your
i constitutional .scruples might have prevented
you from extending. We came here, theref
>ro, expecting to be received as you did receive
us and perfectly content with that entire
willingness, of which you assured us, to
I submit any proposition to Congress, which
wo niignt nave to make upon the subject of
(lie Independence of the State. That willingness
was ample recojrnition of the condition
of public affairs which then rendered
i our presence necessary. In this position,!
i however, it is our duty, both to the State
I which we represent and to ourselves, to corI
reet several important misconceptions of our
letter, into which you have fallen.
| Von say " it was my earnest desire that
i such a disposition should be made of the
whole subject by Congress, who alone possess
the power, to prevent the inauguration
of a civil war between the parties in regard
to the possession of the Federal forts in the
harbor of Charleston, and I therefore, deeply
regret that, in your opinion, 4 the event:? of
the last twenty-four hours render this impossible.'"
Wo expressed no such opinio 1, and
the language which you <|Uote as ours is altered
in its sense by thcomision of a most important
part of the sentence. What we did say
was : " Hut the events of the last twenty-four
hours render such an assurance impossible."
I Mace that " assurance" ns contained in our
letter in the sentence, and we are prepared to
Again, professing to quote our language,
you say :
" Thus, the authorities of South Carolina,
without waiting or ashing for any explanation,
and, doubtless believing, as you have expressed
it, that the ollioer had acted not onlv without,
but against toy orders," &o. We expressed
no such opinion in reference to the belief
of the. people of South Carolina.
The language which you have quoted was
applied solely and entirely to our assurances,
obtained here, and based, as you well know,
linftt) vn'll' AWM '?
J w?. x/ii II uuviitiiiiKMi, a ur.iaoi Iiiiuil
wliieh. at tli.it time, it was impossible for the
authorities of South Carolina to have known.
1 >111, without following this letter into all its
details, we propose only to meet the chief
points of the argument.
Some weeks ago, the St.teof South Carolina
declared her intention, in the existing condition
of public affairs, to secede from the
I'uited States. She called a Convention of
her people to put. her declaration in force.?
The Convention met and passed the Ordinance
of Secession. All this you anticinated. and
your course of action was thoroughly considered.
Tn your annual Message you declared
you had no right, and would not attempt to
coerce a seceding State, but that you woro
bound by your constitutional oath, and would
defend the property of the United States within
the borders of South Carolina, if an attempt
was made to take it by force.
Seeing very early that this question of property
was a diHicult and delicate one, you manifested
u desire to settle it without collision.
You did not reinforcc the garrison in the harI
uwi ni V/IUUIUKIUII.
You removed a distinguished and vctcrnn
officer from tlic command of Fort Moultrie
because he attempted to increase his supply of
ammunition. You refused to send additional
troops to the same garrison, when applied for
by the officer appointed to succeed him. You
accepted tho resignation of the. oldest and
most eminent member of your Cabinet, rather
than allow the garrison to be strengthened.-?
You compelled an officer stationed at Fort
Sumter to return immediately to the Arsenal '
forty muskets, which lie had taken to arm his
mon. You expressed, not to one, but to many
of the most distinguished of our public characters,
whoso testimony will be placed upon
the record, whenever it is necessary, your anxiety
for a poacofu' termination of tins controversy,
and your unwillingness to disturb the
military status of the forts, if Commissioners
should bo sent to the (lovernment, whoso commu
mentions you promised to submit to Congross.
You received and noted on assurances
from the highest official authorities of South
Carolina that no attempt would be made to
disturb your possession of the forts and property
of tho United States if you would not
disturb their existing condition until tho
Commissioners had been sent, nnd theattompt
to ncorotiate had failed. Vmi frv.1r fmm
members of the House of Representatives a
written memorandum that no such attempt
should bo made, u provided that no reinforcements
shall be'sont into thrmo forts and their
I relative military status fthall remain as at prcsi
ont." And although you nttaoh no forco to
% & ' * * *
the acceptance of sucli a paper?although you
" considered it as nothing more in effect than
the promise of highly honorable gentlemen,"
as an obligation on one side without a corresponding
obligation on the other, it must be
remembered (if we are rightly informed) that
i you were pledged, if you ever did send rein|
forccmcnts, to return it to those from whom
I vou had received it before vim svivnfod vnnr
You sent orders to your officers commanding
them, strictly to follow a line of conduct in
conformity with such an understanding. J5csides
all this, you had rectived formal and
official noticc from the Governor of South
Carolina that we had been appointed Commissioners,
and were on our way to Washington.
| You knew the implied condition under which
! we came ; cur arrival was notified to you, and
an hour appointed for an interview. We arrived
in Washington on Wednesday, at three
o'eloek. and vnn nnrminfpil nil intnrvinoi \ci#l>
us sit one the next day. Karly on that day
(Thursday) the news was conununicutcd to
you immediately, and you postponed our meeting
until half-past 2 o'clock on Friday, in order
that you might consult your Cabinet. ()n
Friday we saw you, and we called upon you
then to redeem your pledge. You could not
deny it. With the facts we have stated, and
in the face of the crowning and conclusive
fact that your Secretary at War had. resigned
his seat in the Cabinet, upon the publicly
avowed ground that the action of Major Anderson
had violated the pledged faith of tho
government, and that unless the pledge was
instantly redeemed he was dishonored, denial
You do not deny it now, but you seek to
escape from its obligations on the grounds :
1st, That we terminated all negotiation by
demanding, as a preliminary, the withdrawal
of the United States troops from the harbor
of Charleston ; and 2d, That the authorities
of South Carolina, instead of asking explanation,
and giving you the opportunity to vindi- |
eat.e yourself, took possession of other property
of the United States. We will examine both.
In tlie first place, wo deny positively that
I we have ever, in any way, made any such de- '
I niand. Our letter is in your possession ; it
will stand by this on record. In it we inform
you of the objects of our mission. We say
that it would have been our duty to have assured
you of our readiness to commence ncgoj
tiations, with the most earnest desire to settle
all questions between us amicably and to our
mutual advantage, but that events had renj
dercd that assurance impossible. We stated
j the events, and we said that, until some satis
i factory explanation ot these events was given
i us, we eon Id not proceed, and then, having
I made this request for explanation, we added,
j " And, in conclusion, we would urge upon you
the immediate withdrawal of the troops from
I the harbor of Charleston. Under present eiri
cuinstances, they are a standing menace which
! renders negotiation impossible," &c. " Under
I present circumstances!" What circumstances?
Why, clearly the occupation of Fort
i Sumter and the dismantling of Fort Moultrie j
| by Major Anderson, in the face of your pledg- ]
es, and without explanation or practical disa- !
j vowal. And there is nothing in the letter
| which would or could have prevented you
i from declining to withdraw the troons and
offering the restoration of the status to wliieh
you were pledged, if such had been your desire.
It would have been wiser and better,
in our opinion, to have withdrawn the troops;
and this opinion we urged upon j'ou, but we
ilemantb.d nothing but such an explanation of
the events of the last twenty-four hours as
would restore our confidence in the spirit with
which the negotiations should be conducted.
In relation to this withdrawal of the troops
from the harbor, we are compelled, however,
to notice one passage of your letter. Referring
to it you say, " This I cannot do. This
1 will not do. Such an idea was never thought
of by me in any possible contingency. No
allusion to it had ever been made in any communication
between myself and any human
I 1 ! 9 9
Tn reply to this statement we are compelled to
say it, that your conversation with us left upon
our minds the distinct, impression that you did
seriously contemplate the withdrawal of the
troops from Charleston harbor. And in support
of this impression we would add, that we
have the positive assurance of gentlemen of i
the highest possible public reputation and the
most unsulhicd integrity?men whoso name
and fame, secured hv loni? Hervinft nnrl nntriof i<?
I # / ' / O - I
achievement, place their testimony beyond
cavil?that such suggestions had been made
^,,1 .... vy ..... L,, ! <%!? .v ,1 1.-J I
| iw una ui^cu iijmiii juu ujf liiCiu, ctuu littu
formed the subject of more than one earnest
discussion with you. And it was this knowlI
edge that induced us to urge upon you a policy
which had, to recommend it, its own wisdom
and the weight of such authority.
As to the second point, that the authorities
of South Carolina, instead of asking explana
Hons and giving you the opportunity to vindii
catc you re elf, took possession of other property
i of the United Suites, we would observe, first,
I that even if this were so, it does not avail you
I for defence, for the opportunity for decision
wits afforded you before these facts occurred.
We arvived in Washington on Wednesday.
The news from Major Anderson reached here
earlv on TlilllMilnv and wn?
to you. All that day men of the
highest consideration?men who had striven
successfully to lift you to your great office?
who had been your tried and true friends
through the troubles of your Administration,
sought you, and entreated you to act, to act at
They told you that every hour complicated
your position. They only asked you to givo
the aasurineo that if the facts woro so? that
if the Commander had acfed without and
against your orders, and in violation of. your
pledges?that you would restoro tho status
VOU had hlfldlfeH vnnr honnr ijn mainUU ^
Von refused to docido. Your 8<vorot*ry of
War?your immediate and prop?. ndvis?r in
this wholo matter?waited anxiously for your
decision until bo felt that delay was Homing
More than twelve hours passed, and two
Cabinet meetings had adjourned, before you
knew what the authorities of South Carolina
had done, and your prompt decision at any
moment of that time would have avoided the
| subsequent complications. Hut if you had
known the acts of the authorities of South
Carolina, should that have prevented your
keeping your faith ' What was the condition
of things? For the last sixty days you liavo
had in Charleston harbor not force enough to
hold the forts against an equal enemy. Two
of them were eirtpty; one of those, too, the
most important in the harbor. It could have
been taken any time. You ought to kuow
better than any man that it would have been
taken but for the efforts of those who put
their trust in your honor.
Relieving that they were threatened by
Fort Sumter especially, the people were with
difficulty restrained from securing, without
blood, the possession of this important fortress
After timtlV mill rpitpriltr><l noolirniinno
given on your behalf which we cannot believe
unauthorized, they (Jet or mined to forbear, and
in good faith sent on their Commissioners to
negotiate with you. Tlicy meant you no
harm; wished you no ill. They thought of
yihi kindly; believed you true; and were willing,
as far as was consistent, with duty, to
spare you unnecessary and hostile collision.?
Scarcely had their Commissioners left, than
Major Anderson waged war. No other words
will describe his action.
It was not a peaceful change from one fort
to another; it was a hostile net in the highest
| sense, and only justified in the nroscnce of a
superior enemy and in imminent peril. He
, abandoned bis position, spiked his puns,
burned his gun-carriages, made preparations
for the destruction of his post, and withdrew
under cover of the night to a safer position.
This was war. No man could have believed
I (without yourassurancc) that any officer could
hare taken such a step, " not only without
orders, but against orders." "What the State
did was in simple self-defence ; for this act,
with all its attending circumstances, was as
J much war as firing a volley ; and, war being
thus begun, until those commercing it explained
their action and disavowed their intention,
there was no room for delay, and
even at this moment, while we arc writing, it
is more than probable from the tenor of your
letter, re inforcements are burying into the
conflict, so that when the first gun shall bo
fired, there will have been on your part one
continuous consistent series of actions commencing
in a demonstration essentially war1
l_ _ .11 * '
i iikc, supported ny regular reinforcements,
| and terminating in defeat or victory. And
! all this without the slightest provocation ; for,
among the many things which you have said,
there is one thing you cannot say?you have
waited anxiously for news from the seat of
war, in hopes that delay would furnish some
excuse for this precipitation.
lint this " tangible evidence of a design to
proceed to a hostile act on the part of the au
j thorities of South Carolina," which is the
I only justification of Major Anderson, you are
forced to admit "has not yet been alleged."
Hut you have dccided. You have resolved to
hold by force what you have obtained through
our misplaced confidence, and, by refusing to
disavow tlie action of Major Anderson, have
converted his violation of orders into a legitimate
act of your Executive authority.
l>e the issue what it may, of this wc are
assured, that if Fort Moultrie has been rccord'
ed in history as a memorial of Carolina gallantry,
Fort Sumter will live upon the succeed'ng
page as an imperishable testimony of Caroli
liy your courso you have probably rendered
civil war inevitable. He it so. If you choose
to force this issue upon us the State of South
Carolina will accept it, and relying upon Ilitn
who is the God of .Justice as well as the OJod
of Hosts, will endeavor to perform the great
uuiy wiiicii lies ueiore nor, Hopefully, bravely
Our mission being one for negotiation and
peace, and your note leaving us without hope
of a withdrawal of the troops from Fort Sumter,
or of the restoration of the sto/us </uo existing
at the time of our arrival, and intimating,
as we think, your determination to reinforce
the garrison in the harbor of Charleston,
we respectfully inform you that we purpose
returning to Charleston to-morrow afternoon.
We have the honor to be, sir, very respectfully
J J ll. \\\TiARN WK\
J. H. Adams, ^ Commissioners.
Ja.mks L. Our. j
To his Excellency, the President of the United
The following was the endorsement on the
Executive M vnston, 3 o'clock.
Tliis p ipor just presented to the President,
is of Mich a character that ho declines to rai
! The Navy with Us.?The Montgomery
J (Ala.) Mail lias bf:cti shown a letter from a
j cadet at Annapolis, who offers his services to
[ the Governor. This letter states that the
officers attached to the Academy are all in
a.11 ? ~ a t .1" ' ' '
iu11 rjriujwiny wun inc ooutn ; una tlio writer
thinks that owing to resignations and reluct:mec
to serve against the South, it wilf
; bo very difficult to make the Navy ? party to
| coercion. Most of the officcrH in the Navy
and Army arc educated, bravo and honorablo
men. Such persons are rarely, if over, Black
[ Republicans. It requires a talent for stealing
I and fulso swearing to make a man anybody
iu the iMaek AUnks. Hence the sympathy in
tho army a?d navy fur the South.
A vot.rripciaw!^ Jok.k.?Diglor, of Penni
aylvar.ia, meeting John Cochrane casually in
the hall at Willard's LIoM? &?id : "What
about thin Hailey fraud, Cochrane, do ypu
Kcnranything hi addition ?" "Oh," replied
Cochrane, " there is nothing in addition, H'?
-??l Vi - - >>
till III BUUirUUliUtJ.
' fc vwiLL never speafet well or tas w?U,
rtj ' ** ""'."IM