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1865 September 2: Dead Andersonville Prisoners Given “Decent” Burials

September 2, 2015

The following appeared in The Prescott Journal’s normal “By Telegraph” column on September 2, 1865.  The two inside pages of The Polk County Press are identical to the Journal’s inside pages for September 2, 1865.  No explanation is given in either newspaper; it may have happened during microfilming.

Today Andersonville Prison is a National Historic Site and and the cemetery is a National Cemetery, both run by the U.S. National Park Service.  On their website for Andersonville, they state:  “Andersonville National Cemetery was established to provide a permanent place of honor for those who died in military service to our country. The initial interments, beginning in February 1864, were trench burials of the prisoners who died in the nearby military prison. In fourteen months, nearly 13,000 soldiers were buried here. … Burial locations can be located online using the Nationwide Graveside Locator” and limiting your search to Andersonville National Cemetery, Ga.

B Y   T E L E G R A P H

NEW YORK, Aug. 25.—Tribune’s special says Capt. James M. Moore,¹ A. Q. M., who left here on the 8th of July last, for Andersonville, Ga., for the purpose of decently burying the remains of our murdered heroes, returned to this city this morning, having accomplished the object of his visit.  The captain records that he arrived at Andersonville on the 25th ult., after having experienced considerable difficulty in procuring transportation for himself, his party of mechanics and clerks.  The work of painting and lettering the head boards for the graves was immediately commenced and finished, occu-[pying] nearly the whole time of the party’s stay.

There were 13,000 head boards set up, all appropriately lettered, giving the names, and as far as known, the regiment and company of the deceased.  The Captain found the graves nearly all marked with a neatly painted stake, numbered—the numbers on the stakes corresponding with a record kept in the hospital of the prison, giving the names of those buried.  The cemetery is about fifty acres in extent, and nearly 300 yards from the stockade.  The dead were buried in trenches—in many cases over 100 in a trench.  Mounds were created over each body, thus forming graves.  A neat white fence has been erected around the cemetery, and the place made to look as well as possible.  Pleasant walks are being laid out which are to be shaded by trees.


Grounds at Andersonville, from “Harper’s Weekly”²

1.  James Miles Moore (1837-1905) was, at this time, a captain, Assistant Quartermaster General, U. S. Army, as of July 2, 1864. His obituary states, “General Moore was among the first to enlist in the Civil War, joining the Nineteenth Pennsylvania Infantry on April 18, 1861.  He served two years in the line and was then transferred to the Quartermaster’s Department in which he remained until his promotion to colonel in 1901.  He was promoted to brigadier general on the retired list in 1904.”
In 1866 the U.S. Government Printing Office published Moore’s official
report of this expedition and his list of the dead buried at Andersonville, entitled The Martyrs Who For Our Country Gave Up Their Lives In the Prison Pens In Andersonville, Ga; it is available digitally on the HathiTrust Digital Library. Moore’s list of dead was published by the government to compete with Dorence Atwater’s list of the Andersonville dead. Atwater was a Union soldier in Andersonville who was one of several prisoners charged with maintaining the death register, which he secretly copied. He worked with Clara Barton, who helped get it published by the New York Tribune in 1866 as A List of the Union Soldiers Buried at Andersonville; it is available digitally on the Internet Library.
2.  “Grounds at Andersonville, Georgia, Where Are Buried Fourteen Thousand Union Soldiers, Who Died in Andersonville Prison,” from the October 7, 1865, issue of Harper’s Weekly. The picture includes Clara Barton raising the national flag, in far background, which happened on August 17, 1865. The University of Wisconsin-River Falls’ Chalmer Davee Library has microfilm copies of Harper’s Weekly for 1858-1865 (UWRF online catalog).

1865 August 26: Applications for Confederate Pardons Pour In; Will Henry Wirz Escape Trial?; and News of the Indians from General Pope and Sully

September 1, 2015

The following news items come from the August 26, 1865, issue of The Prescott Journal.

B Y   T E L E G R A P H

NEW YORK, Aug. 19.—The property of Shoyer and Ludwig of this city, has been libelled for confiscation.  These men are immensely rich, and did the entire engraving of bank notes, bonds, and checks for the late rebel government.  This one righteous act points quite plainly the intent of the government.

The Time’s Washington special says :  Applications for pardon still pour in by the hundreds.  Every day about four hundred received.  To-day, Governor Sharky [sic]¹ sends them up from Mississippi, Governor Pierpont [Francis H. Pierpont] from Virginia, Governor Parsons² from Alabama, and Governor Holden [W. W. Holden] from North Carolina.

From Georgia come fewer than from any other of the southern States.

Gov. Johnson [James Johnson] does not believe in the efficacy of pardons as strongly as some of his brethren.  He thinks reflection, meditation and true repentance better than amnesty oaths and lip service loyalty.  Neither does he believe that the appointment of provisional Governors confers sovereignty powers, nor that if at all authorizes them to usurp the functions conferred only by the constitutions of the State.

A number more of the $20,000 claims of rebels were pardoned to-day.

Maj. John B. Castleman and Lieut. Wm. Mumford, of the rebel army, who were arrested last winter as spies within our lines and confined at Indianapolis, have been pardoned by the President, to leave the country immediately.

Lafayette McMullen³ of Virginia, a member of the rebel congress, arrived here yesterday, armed with a letter from Gov. Pierpont to the Secretary of War, recommending the withdrawal of the colored troops from that state because they are obnoxious.  Mr. McMullen had an interview with Sec. Stanton to-day [Edwin M. Stanton].  The order for the withdrawal of the black troops has not been issued.

WASHINGTON, Aug. 18.—An opinion  has been confidently expressed to-day by parties competent to judge, that the Government will not undertake the trial of Wertz [sic],4 but will cause that person to turn state’s evidence in the approaching trial of Jeff. Davis [Jefferson Davis], whereby it will be proved that the rebel President was the direct and prime instrument of cruelties practiced upon Union prisoners, and the numberless other atrocities which were from time to time committed in defiance to the usages of warfare.  It is known that Wertz [sic] has expressed his desire to make some important revelations as to the extent that Davis was implicated in the outrages of the Southern prisoners.

Telegrams were received from Major General Pope [John Pope], to-day, at the Indian Bureau, containing a communication from General Sully [Alfred Sully], now conducting the military expedition in Dakota, announcing that there is no doubt but a permanent peace can now be secured by the Government, with the Sioux and Cheyenne tribes, on the Upper Missouri River.  Endorsing this intelligence, and referring it to Secretary Harlan [James Harlan], Gen. Pope suggests that no civil or military person in the section resided in by these Indians, should be appointed a commissioner for treating with them.

In addition to the above, Gen. Sully remarks, that in that quarter, the inhabitants are apprehensive that the coming winter will be one of great severity, and it is feared that the troops will suffer even more than they did last season, and that all efforts, the present season to raise garden vegetables for the use of the camps, were futile, by reason of  the ravages of insects.

General News.

— A soldier who was guilty of gross cowardice at the battle of the Wilderness, was tried by court martial at New York for the offense and sentenced to be shot.  He was taken to Broome Street Barracks, but had not been there half an hour when he sent a polite note down to the officer below for a pass.  Those in charge of the office failing to keep a correct account of their prisoners, gave the pass, and the result was the fellow walked out and has not been seen since.

1.  William Lewis Sharkey (1797-1873) was the 25th governor of Mississippi, appointed by President Andrew Johnson on June 13, 1865, as the provisional governor. Before the Civil War, Sharkey was a highly successful lawyer in Vicksburg, served briefly in the state legislature, and was elected chief justice of the Mississippi High Court of Errors and Appeals, a position he held for eighteen years. After leaving the bench, Sharkey served briefly as the American counsel to Cuba and compiled the Mississippi Code of 1857. He was a strong unionist and one of the few Mississippi political leaders who did not support the Confederate States of America. Governor Sharkey did not take an active role in the Reconstruction of Mississippi after he left office in December 1865. He continued his law practice in Jackson until his death.
2.  Lewis Eliphalet Parsons (1817-1895) was the appointed provisional, and 19th governor of Alabama, serving from June to December of 1865. He had been a member of the Alabama House of Representatives (1859 and 1865). In April 1865, Parsons fought as a Confederate lieutenant at the brief Battle of Munford near Talladega (Alabama). President Andrew Johnson appointed Parsons provisional governor of Alabama on June 21, 1865. He ordered the election of delegates to a constitutional convention that met September 12, 1865. The convention repealed the ordinance of secession, renounced the state’s war debts, abolished slavery, and scheduled elections to choose state officials and representatives to Congress. Parsons attempted to purchase the panhandle of Florida for Alabama, which sparked rumors that he had access to unclaimed confederate gold. Parsons’s term ended on December 13, 1865, with the inauguration of Robert M. Patton. Parsons was elected to the U.S. Senate, but was refused his seat by the Republicans.
3.  LaFayette “Fayette” McMullan (1805-1880) was a member of the Virginia state house of delegates, a member of the Virginia state senate (1839-49), a member of the U.S. House of Representatives (1849-57), the second governor of Washington Territory (1857-61), a representative from Virginia in the Second Confederate Congress (1864-65), and ran unsuccessfully for governor of Virginia in 1878.
4.  Heinrich Hartmann Wirz, better known as Henry Wirz (1823-1865), was a Swiss-born Confederate officer best known for his command of Andersonville Prison (aka Camp Sumter), the Confederate prisoner-of-war camp in Georgia. He was tried after the War for conspiracy and murder relating to his command of the camp, was convicted, and was executed on November 10, 1865.

1865 August 26: Lincoln Conspirators Sent to the Dry Tortugas

August 31, 2015

This article on the four Lincoln conspirators not hanged—Dr. Samuel A. Mudd,¹ Michael O’Lauglen, Jr.,² Samuel Arnold,³ and Edman Spangler4—comes from the August 26, 1865, issue of The P.

The full set of conspirators—John Wilkes Booth, David E. Herold, Lewis Powell, Michael O’Laughlen, Jr.,² and John H. Surratt, Jr.—planned to kidnap President Abraham Lincoln and hold him to exchange for Confederate prisoners. This was attempted twice, but failed, because Lincoln was not where they thought he would be.  Arnold and O’Laughlen dropped out of the conspiracy when the prisoner-exchange program started.

The four conspirators listed here were sentenced to prison at Fort Jefferson (in the Dry Tortugas, Florida). You may remember the Torgugas from Frank D. Harding’s letter of January 28, 1865.  Tortuga is the Spanish word for turtle or tortoise, and the Dry Torgugas is a group of islands in the Florida Keys, about 70 miles west of Key West, Florida. Fort Jefferson is located there.

Michael O’Laughlen died in the prison at Fort Jefferson in 1867, and in 1869, Mudd, Arnold, and Spangler were released after being pardoned by President Andrew Johnson.

Mudd, O’Laughlin [sic], Arnold and Spangler on their way to the Dry Tortugas. 

During the voyage, all the prisoners were more or less afflicted with seasickness, and at one time half of the guards were unfit for duty.  Dr. Mudd and Arnold were particularly wretched.

Spangler, though quite sick, was given to practical joking.  Finding that while sick, he could get from the Surgeon, Dr. Porter, a modicum of French brandy, he concluded to take sick at various times, always with pains for which vini galliei spiritus is supposed to be a sovereign cure ;  but his trick was discovered, and he was, much to his chagrin, compelled to quaff Jamaica ginger in place of the more palatable beverage.

He was generally quite talkative, and expressed himself satisfied with the action of the Military Commission, but continued to assert his innocence of participation in the crime of assassination.

In a conversation with Captain Dutton, he remarked that he knew nothing of Booth’s designs, and that even after the murder, while Booth was passing through the theatre, he was unaware of the foul deed that had been committed.

“The fact is, Captain,” said he, “Booth was a privileged character at Ford’s.  He had the run of the house at all times, day and night ;  had access to the dressing-rooms, and frequently came to the rehearsals unannounced, and always by the rear entrance.  He was a great favorite, and spent money freely.  Whenever he came with his horse he always called for me to groom the animal, and I have many a time blacked his boots, and done other menial work for him.  I did not close the door behind Booth.  It was a spring door, which you can see when you get back to Washington, and closed of itself unless you held it open. There was nothing unusual in my holding Booth’s horse on the night of the murder, for I had done it twenty times before.  I didn’t see how the Commission which tried me could have decided otherwise in my case, considering the evidence ;  but I am not guilty of having anything to do with the crime.”

Spangler was very lively during the voyage, and several times ran up the ladder from the hold, three steps at a time, heavily ironed as he was.  He was quite jubilant over the idea that he would not be a prisoner for life.  “I’ll come out all right—six years is not such a long time after all,” said he.  “You need not felicitate yourself on having a short time to stay, Spangler,” said Dr. Mudd.  “I don’t know where they are taking us, but if it is to the Dry Tortugas, there is no more chance for you than for me.  None of us will live more than two years.”

Up to this time, not a word had been dropped in references to the ultimate destination of the conspirators, but they had occupied themselves in discussing the probabilities of a residence at Albany, a trip to some port on the Gulf, or a sudden death by drowning.  O’Laughlin [sic] was very reticent, rarely entering into conversation even with his fellow-prisoners.

Mudd carried with him a printed copy of the evidence educed during his trial, and took great pleasure in tearing it to pieces.  He is described, by our informant, as a man of good education, considerable shrewdness, and strong rebel proclivities.  He was never off his guard, always pondered a question well before returning an answer, and invariably spoke of Mrs. Surratt as having been unjustly executed.  It will be remembered that on his trial, Mudd denied all knowledge of Booth previous to the visit of the lame assassin to the Doctor’s house, but to Captain Dutton he confessed that he was acquainted with Booth for some time before the murder.  In regard to that deplorable crime he did not know of it until after Booth’s departure.

Mudd was very gloomy during the voyage, and fears were entertained by his guard that he contemplated suicide.  He was accordingly closely watched, very much to his indignation.

“Why do you keep me so closely guarded ?”  Said he to the officer in charge of him.

“Because,” said Capt. D., “I am afraid I may lose you.”

“How lose me ?  There is surely no chance for me to escape here, and you do not suspect that I would kill myself ?”

“That it just what I fear, and until I get my receipt for your body from the commandant of the post to which you are consigned, I deem it my duty to have your every step strictly watched.”

“Well, Captain, you need have no fear on my account.  I would put an end to my miserable existence, but for the thought of eternity.  I am afraid to die, although I can bear this terrible life, which is so much worse than death.”

When off the coast of Florida, the weather being so warm, the prisoners were allowed to sleep on deck, and during the day their irons were removed.  They were very grateful for this unmerited kindness, and showed their appreciation by giving as little trouble as possible to those who had charge of them.

When the steamer came in sight of the Dry Tortugas, on the 24th, and it was made known to the criminals that this treeless, lifeless place was to be their prison, their emotion could not be checked.  They cried like children, Mudd and Arnold in particular, evincing the most poignant grief.  The former paced the deck, wringing his hands, and exclaiming time and time again, “there is no hope for me.”  Arnold bewailed his fate in piteous tones.  He said, “if this were Albany, or any other place where my mother and sisters could sometimes see me, I might bear my imprisonment, but here I shall have no one to live for.”  Mudd declared, when his paroxism of grief had subsided, that he should lose no opportunity to effect his escape.  When asked where he would go if he succeeded in eluding the vigilance of the garrison, he cried out, “Home !  Government would not touch me there.  It could not hunt me down in the midst of my wife and children.”

1.  The conviction of Dr. Samuel Mudd proved to be—along with the death sentence for Mary Surratt—the most controversial action of the Military Commission that tried the Lincoln assassination conspirators. Samuel Alexander Mudd (1833-1883) was a doctor in southern Maryland, who also used slaves on his tobacco-farm, believing slavery was a God-given institution. The Civil War seriously damaged his business, especially when Maryland abolished slavery in 1864. At this time, he first met Booth, who was planning to kidnap Lincoln, and Mudd was seen in company with three of the conspirators. But his part in the plot, if any, remains unclear. After assassinating Lincoln on April 14, 1865, Booth and co-conspirator David Herold rode to Mudd’s home in the early hours of the 15th for surgery on his fractured leg. Some time that day, Mudd must have learned of the assassination, but did not report Booth’s visit to the authorities for another 24 hours; this appeared to link him to the crime and he was sentenced to life imprisonment.
2.  Michael O’Laughlen, Jr. (1840-1867) was one of John Wilkes Booth’s earliest friends as the Booth family lived across the street from the O’Laughlens. When the Civil War started, O’Laughlen joined the Confederate Army and was discharged in June 1862. In the fall of 1864 O’Laughlen agreed to become a co-conspirator in the plot to kidnap President Lincoln, becoming one of Booth’s earliest recruits. The government attempted to prove he had stalked Ulysses S. Grant on the nights of April 13 and April 14 with the intent to kill and murder. This was not proven, but there was no doubt O’Laughlen was a willing conspirator through late March. He was found guilty and sentenced to life in prison. He died in Fort Jefferson in the Dry Tortugas from yellow fever on September 23, 1867.
3.  Samuel Bland Arnold (1834-1906) was a classmate of Booth at St. Timothy’s Military Academy. Booth recruited him in the late summer of 1864 to join the conspiracy to kidnap Lincoln.  Arnold dropped out of the conspiracy around the middle of March, but was arrested on suspicion of complicity after the assassination of Lincoln. After his release from prison, Arnold wrote a detailed confession of his role in the plot to kidnap Lincoln.  His statement was published in Samuel Bland Arnold: Memoirs of a Lincoln Conspirator, by Michael W. Kauffman. In 1902 Arnold wrote a series of newspaper articles for the Baltimore American describing his imprisonment at Fort Jefferson.
4.  Edman/Edmund “Ned” Spangler (1825-1875) was an American carpenter and stagehand who was employed at Ford’s Theatre at the time of President Lincoln’s assassination. In the early 1850s, Spangler helped build the summer home of the Booth family, and it was during this time that Spangler met future stage actor John Wilkes Booth, who was then a child. In 1861, he relocated to Washington, D.C., and began working as a carpenter and scene shifter at Ford’s Theatre. It was while working at Ford’s Theatre that Spangler became reacquainted John Wilkes Booth, and was dazzled by Booth’s fame and charm. After the assassination, Spangler was arrested on April 15, 1865, and released. He was arrested a second time on April 17 and booked as an accomplice to John Wilkes Booth. Although the evidence against him was questionable, Spangler was found guilty and sentenced to six years in prison.

1865 August 26: A New Proposed Tomb for Lincoln; Jubal Early in Washington

August 30, 2015

These two smaller articles come from The Prescott Journal of August 26, 1865.

Proposed Tomb for the Remains of the Late President Lincoln.
(From the Springfield, Ill., Journal.)

We had the opportunity, a few days since of examining the plan and drawings made by L. D. Cleveland, Esq., architect of the tomb proposed to be built at Oak Ridge Cemetery, to receive the remains of the late President Lincoln.—The mausoleum, if built in accordance with the plan furnished by Mr. Cleveland, will be a beautiful structure, and is to be placed a short distance from the proposed monument.  In size, it will be twenty and one-half feet, by fifteen and one-half feet on the ground, nine feet in height to the cornice, and twenty feet to the apex of the roof, finished with four winged buttresses, surmounted with Gothic pinnacles, which  are connected with the roof by “flying” buttresses.  A room, eight by ten, on the ground, and thirteen and a half feet high, is to be finished with “grained” arches, in the front part of the structure, for a chapel.  In the rear of this room will be twelve catacombs for depositing the dead.  The door will be of iron, with open pannels [sic] at the top for ventilation.  The walls of the structure are to be finished with stone, and the floor with polished marble.  We understand that the above plan has been presented for the consideration of the Directors of the Monument Association, but has not yet been acted upon.¹

Jubal Early turns up at Washington.—Ex-General Jubal Early, who was up in this neighborhood last summer, and left on account of the bad air, has been, and I believe still is, in the city.  He swaggers along the avenue as large as a Dutch General.  On last Friday evening he was out with a number of resident friends on the street talking arrogantly and loudly of “the humiliation of asking pardon of the President” and swearing that, “he would scorn to do such a thing,” that he had “lots of money in Europe to live on,” &c.  Shortly afterwards he visited a low theatre—the Canterbury, and became rather beery.  The President, he said, was welcome to take all the property of Jubal Early he could find “and go to hell with it,” &c.  All of which sounds remarkably well, coming from one of our erring brethren.

Lincoln Tomb1.  The actual Lincoln Tomb in Oak Ridge Cemetery (Springfield, Illinois) was designed by American sculptor Larkin Goldsmith Mead, Jr. (1835-1910). Early in the Civil War, Mead worked as an illustrator for Harper’s Weekly and was at the front with the Army of the Potomac for six months. He moved to Florence, Italy, returning briefly in 1865. His brother William Rutherford Mead (1846-1928) was a well-known architect with the firm McKim, Mead, and White.

1865 August 27: Jerry Flint Writes, “there is not much prospect of the Regt. being Discharged this fall”

August 27, 2015

Jerry Flint, with the 4th Wisconsin Cavalry, complains that he hasn’t had any letters since June, but we have not had a letter from him since then, either.  The original of this letter is in the Jerry E. Flint Papers (River Falls Mss BN) at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls, University Archives and Area Research Center.

New Orleans  La
August 27th  1865

Dear Brother;

                           I dropped you a few lines the other day in reference to the money I expressed to you, but was in to [sic] big a hurry to write more at that time.  I shall start for Indianolia [sic: Indianola, Mississippi] tomorrow provided I can get a Steamer that suits me.  I might have gone last night but accidentally got left because I did not like the Boat.

After I got to the above mentioned point I shall have 160 miles to go by stage to get to San Antonio where the Regt. is now located.  As near as I can learn there is not much prospect of the Regt. being Discharged this fall.  I have not had a letter from the north for so long I have almost forgotten where to direct a letter to find my friends.  I have not had a letter from that country since June.  That is the honest truth.

My health so very fine now and as we will soon commence having cooler weather I am in hopes to be bunkum again.  I might have got a furlough while in Hospital but was afraid that you would laugh at me for coming home so often.  How are all the folks and what do they find to do this awful hot weather ?

Do you hear anything from Helen.  Let me know where she is now, and what Dean is doing.¹

Tell all my good friends that if they want to see me to Go to Texas.

Business is quite lively here since the close of the war.  Jeff. Thompson the Rebel Gen. has a store only three doors from where I am writing.  I see him every day.  The famous Semmes [Raphael Semmes] of the Alabama is also here.

If that money does not arrive by the twentieth of Sept., write and let me know.  Have the money so disposed of that I can get it at any time.

Write Soon Direct to San Antonio,

From Your Brother,
.              .J. E. Flint

1.  Jerry’s sister, Helen Flint Dean, and her husband, Royal L. Dean.

Jerry Flint letter of August 27, 1865, from the Jerry E. Flint Papers (River Falls Mss BN) at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls University Archives & Area Research Center

Jerry Flint letter of August 27, 1865, from the Jerry E. Flint Papers (River Falls Mss BN) at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls University Archives & Area Research Center

1865 August 26: General Grant Visits Prescott

August 26, 2015

The Prescott Journal of August 26, 1865, covered the visit of General Ulysses S. Grant.

G E N.   G R A N T !


Great Enthusiasm Manifested

Remarks by the General, Incidents, &c.

Yielding to the solicitations of the patriotic people of Prescott and St. Paul, Gen. U.S. GRANT, who it will be remembered has been somewhat prominent in connection with the late war, has taken a trip “up the river.”

His reception here was brilliant beyond anything in the previous history of this city, and must have been flattering to the great chief, as it was creditable to ourselves.  We can give but a brief outline of the reception, which occurred about 12 o’clock last night.

A scandalous rumor having been put in circulation that the great strategist would attempt to flank this town by going up the channel on the other side of the island, Mr. Mecham [Edgar A. Meacham] was detailed to occupy that channel with a barge.  The sagacious soldier did not attempt to flank him, and so the noble Itasca moved straight for our levee.

As the boat came in sight, the blocks on the levee were brilliantly illuminated, bonfires were kindled, and the cannon thundered a welcome.  The Democratic levee did itself honor.  Nessel had out two rows of Chinese lanterns the whole length of his Hotel, with appropriate mottoes.  Beardsley [Joseph W. Beardsley] and Lyford each held aloft a torch, formerly owned by the McClellan club ;  while Charley Barnes, his face radiant with joy, had his office gaily illuminated, and stood on the sidewalk with a kerosene lamp in each hand.

As the boat neared the levee, the Glee Club under the lead of Prof. Billings sang,

“Lo, the conquering Hero comes.”¹

Music has charms, in fact it is “the pla_ spel of the sole,” and the music brought Gen. Grant to the bow of the boat.  As the boat landed and the plank was run out, he was greeted with three rousing cheers.  He attempted to come ashore, but had lost his ticket, and Clerk LEWIS would not let him off without paying his fare, so he leaned against the capstan while the


was delivered, by Mr. J. M. McKEE, Esq., formerly a prominent officer in the Home Guards.  Mr. McKEE stroked his manly beard with becoming dignity and said he felt proud to welcome this great chief to Prescott.  He had never before had the pleasure of seeing the victorious leader, as imperative business had kept him from visiting the sunny South during our recent trouble.  He made some further appropriate remarks, and closed by telling the General that he could get cigars of excellent flavor at the Book & Variety Store.

Gen. Grant made no speech in response, but easily and gracefully leaning against the capstan,² he indulged in a running talk, the substance of a portion of which we give.  He thanked Mr. McKee for the pleasant remarks he had made, especially about the cigars, and told him he might send him a box as a sample.  He said that he had heard of many of McKee’s suggestions about the war, and they had been of great service to him.  Though he had never before seen but a few of the manly faces before him, yet he had been a careful reader of the “Family Paper,” and felt well acquainted with us all.  He asked to be introduced to Dr. Beardsley, and told the Dr. that those Co. Seat resolutions of his, were a very wrong and wicked thing, but he supposed his heart was nearer right than his head, and no doubt he repudiated them now.  He forgave him, since he had taken Richmond, (O. T.)

The Gen. was then introduced by his request, to Chas. L. Barnes.  Said he, “Squire Barnes, is it true, as I hear that you are going for negro suffrage !”  Chas. replied that it was.  The Gen. congratulated him, and advised him to fight it out on that line.  Said he, “Esq. Barnes, you are young yet, and can still do a great deal to elevate an oppressed race.”

The Gen. then enquired for Barnard, and was told that he had gone to St. Paul, when he replied, “all right, I shall see him there.  I understand he was powerful on recruiting.”

The General evidently wished to talk with several others, but just at this time Capt. Webb rang the bell, and said that boat was going to St. Paul, so the General broke of [off?] his remarks, and retired to his room, which was C, ladies’ cabin.

The demonstration was an imposing one, and well calculated to flatter the General, and impress him with a sense of the grandeur of the Northwest.



1.  From George Frederic Handel’s Judas Maccabaeus.
A capstan is a vertical-axled rotating machine developed for use on sailing ships to apply force to ropes, cables, and hawsers.

1865 August 19: 7th Minnesota Infantry Boys Home, Grand Welcome Planned at Taylor’s Falls

August 25, 2015

Following are the smaller items from The Polk County Press of August 19, 1865.

— The Enterprise brought up a party of the 7th [Minn.] regiment boys, who enlisted from Chisago County Minnesota, last Thursday evening.  Many of them were sick with the ague.  The boat was loaded to the guards with freight and passengers.

— Adjutant General Thomas made a speech at Elmira, N. Y., last week, in response to a serenade, in which he said Maximillian would have to get out of Mexico or we would hurry him out.  The Monroe doctrine must be enforced.  [Lorenzo Thomas]

— Gen. Butler has sent a letter to the convention of colored men at Alexandria, Va., in which he advises the colored men of East Virginia to do no violence, as all eyes are upon them.  As to the grievances complained of by the colored men of Norfolk and Portsmouth, the General says the blacks will certainly receive all they ask, as sure as two and two make four.  [Benjamin F. Butler]

— Hon. Geo. H. Pendleton, of Ohio, Democratic candidate for Vice President at the last election, had a cordial interview, in Washington, last Friday, with his antagonist on that occasion, President Johnson [Andrew Johnson].

— We have noticed on our streets many times a rather soldierly looking individual whom, on inquiry we found to be a brother of Casper Hauser and old soldier having served in different armies for the past thirty years.¹  He has fought in Asia, Egypt, Russia, Italy, Prussia, Spain and finally has served for three years in the Third Minnesota Infantry.—Taylor’s Fall Reporter.

Jacob Thompson, rebel agent in Canada, lately abandoned his friends and associates, taking all that remained of the rebel spoils, and his fellow adventurers are avenging themselves by wishing that the United States government may catch and hang Thompson.

R. M. T. Hunter asks to be released from Fort Pulaski, on condition that he leaves the country forever.

— The citizens of Chisago County are going to give their returned soldiers a grand welcome at Taylor’s Falls, sometime next week.  All soldiers are invited to be present.  Hon. L. K. STANNARD is orator of the day.

1.  Gottfried Hauser (1819-1888) was a private in Company F, 3rd Minnesota Infantry, from January 1864 to June 1865. He was 43 years old when he mustered in, and was born in Switzerland. He died in June of 1888 and is buried in the Kahbakong Cemetery in Taylors Falls, Minnesota.



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