Слике страница




610. The defiant tone assumed for several years by the Mormons in Utah, who would acknowledge no governor but Brigham Young and had even compelled a U. S. judge to adjourn his court at the point of the bowie-knife, led the president to send a force of 2,500 men to bring them to subjection. On the approach of this army in the fall of 1857, the Mormons prepared for resistance; but the following spring, while the U. S. forces were still in winter-quarters at some distance from Salt Lake City, commissioners arrived with offers of pardon to all who would submit to federal authority, and the Mormon chiefs deemed it wise to come to terms. The U. S. troops remained in the territory about two years, to maintain order and enforce the laws.

611. Paraguay [par-a-gwa'], a South American state, having given the U. S. government just cause of offence by firing on a national vessel while peaceably engaged in surveying the Paraguay River, and refusing satisfaction, a strong naval force was sent out to that country towards the close of 1858. A commissioner accompanied the fleet, to settle the difficulty, if possible, without recourse to violence. He succeeded in so doing, Paraguay agreeing to make reparation for the injury.

612. The summer of 1860 was signalized by the arrival of a magnificent embassy from the empire of Japan. It consisted of seventy-one persons, who were regarded with great interest and entertained as the guests of the nation. After delivering the treaty which they had brought from their

goyernment, and shrewdly examining the many inventions and improvements which they now saw for the first time, they returned to their own land with many specimens of American ingenuity and industry.

613. Three new members of the Union were admitted during this administration,-Minnesota in 1858, Oregon in 1859, and Kansas, the scene of such protracted struggles

fall after Buchanan's inauguration? 610. Give an account of the difficulty with the Mormons. How was it settled? 611. What was the cause, and what the result, of the Paraguay expedition ? 612. By what was the summer of 1860 signalized ? Of how many did the Japanese embassy consist? What did it accomplish What new states were admitted during Buchanan’s term, and in what years;

between the advocates and opponents of slavery, in 1861,all as free states.

614. The peace of the country was constantly disturbed, throughout Buchanan's term, by the agitation of the slavery question. The decision made by the Supreme Court in 1857 in the celebrated “Dred Scott case”, to the effect that negroes, whether slaves or free, are not, by the Constitution, citizens of the United States, provoked the most violent discussions. The excitement was increased by the passage in several of the free states of what were called “ Personal Liberty Bills”, intended to prevent the execution of the Fugitive Slave Act. It reached the highest pitch in the fall of 1859, in consequence of the seizure of the U. S. Arsenal at Harper's Ferry, in northern Virginia, by John Brown and twenty-one associates, with the view of exciting an insurrection among the slaves and establishing their freedom by force of arms. This movement totally failed; it was put down on the second day by U. S. marines. Thirteen of the party were killed in the struggle; all the rest but two were captured. Brown was delivered to the authorities of Virginia for trial, was found guilty, and with six of his companions hanged. This attempt was charged by the southern leaders on the whole people of the north, and greatly increased the bitterness of feeling

615. At the presidential election of 1860 four candidates were presented. Abraham Lincoln, of Illinois, was supported by the republicans; Stephen A. Douglas, of the same state, by one wing of the democracy-John C. Breckinridge, of Kentucky, by another; and John Bell, of Tennessee, by a new party styling themselves“ Constitutional Unionists". The contest resulted in the election of Mr. Lincoln as president, and Hannibal Hamlin, of Maine, as vicepresident.

614. By what was the country disturbed throughout this administration? What famous decision was made in 1857? How was the excitement increased ? Give an account of John Brown's raid. What was the fate of its author ? What was the consequence of this attempt ? 615. Name the candidates at the presidential election of 1860. Who were elected president and vice-president i 616. When




616. No sooner was the result of the election known, than the southern leaders, who had threatened to break up the Union if the republicans proved victorious, proceeded to carry out their threats. They alleged that Mr. Lincoln was a sectional candidate pledged to the overthrow of slavery, and, assuming the right of secession, declared that its exercise was necessary to protect them from aggression on the part of the Federal government. On the 20th of December, 1860, a convention, assembled in Charleston, declared that the union before existing between South Carolina and other states under the name of the United States of America was dissolved'. By the 1st of February, 1861, through the influence of the press and the devices of a few leaders, six other states, Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, and Texas, following the example of South Carolina, had passed ordinances of secession, and their senators and representatives left their seats in the Congress of the U.S. On the 4th of February, delegates from six of the seceded states met at Montgomery, Ala., and formed a union under the title of “the Confederate States of America”. For provisional president they selected Jefferson Davis, of Mississippi, who had been a colonel in the Mexican War, a member of Pierce's cabinet, and a prominent advocate of southern rights in the senate of the U. S.

617. Meanwhile the Federal government seemed para-lyzed. There was a great deal of talk in Congress, but no prompt or efficient action.

A Peace Conference, consisting of delegates from twenty-one states, assembled at Washington on the 4th of February, with the view of restoring harmony; it proposed certain amendments to the Constitution, but Congress failed to adopt them. Pres. Buchanan, surrounded mostly by advisers who sympa

the result of the election was known, what followed? What took place December 20th, 1860 ? Name the six states that next followed the example of South Carolina. What was done on the 4th of February, 1861 ? Who was temporarily chosen president of “the Confederate States ”' 617. Meanwhile, what was the Federal government doing? When and where did a Peace Conference assemble ? What did it effect? What did the president do? What became of the forts and

thized with the south, allowed events to take their course. The forts and arsenals in the seceded states, left at the mercy of the “Confederates” (the name assumed by those who attempted to secede, and therefore applied to them here), were seized one after another with their munitions of war.

The army, at best but small, was for the most part stationed at remote frontier posts, where for protecting the Union it was powerless. A large detachment under Gen. Twiggs in Texas was, with much valuable government property, treacherously surrendered by its commander to the state authorities, soon after the passage of the ordinance of secession. Such was the melancholy position of affairs when Buchanan's term drew to its close, and on the 4th of March, 1861, Abraham Lincoln was inaugurated.



618. ABRAHAM LINCOLN was born in Kentucky in 1809. In 1816 the family removed to Indiana, where for ten years Abraham was occupied in hard labor on his father's farm, with but few opportunities of attending school. At the age of 21 he went to Illinois, and there finally commenced the study of law. He rapidly attained distinction in his profession, and was several times elected to the legislature of his' adopted state. In 1846 he was sent to the lower house of Congress, and on the formation of the republican party became one of its prominent leaders. Mr. Lincoln appointed William H. Seward, of N. Y., secretary of state ; Salmon P. Chase, secretary of the treasury; Simon Cameron (succeeded Jan, 15th, 1862, by

arsenals in the seceded states? Where was the regular army at this time? What befell a large detachment in Texas ? When was Mr. Lincoln inaugurated ?

618. Give a sketch of President Lincoln's previous history. Name bis four




Edwin M. Stanton), secretary of war; and Gideon Welles, secretary of the navy.

619. While most of the government property in the seceded states had been seized by the Confederates, Fort Sumter, one of the defences of Charleston harbor, was still held by a little band of 79 men, commanded by Major Robert Anderson. President Buchanan had tried to reenforce this post, but without success, the vessel he sent having been fired upon and turned back by batteries commanding the approaches to the fort. A large body of southern troops had now assembled at Charleston, and fortifications of great strength had been erected in the harbor. An attempt made by the Confederate States, through commissioners (March 12th), to obtain their recognition as an independent government by the authorities at Washington, and to negotiate for the settlement of difficulties, proved unsuccessful; and, Pres. Lincoln having ordered several vessels to Sumter with supplies and reenforcements, Gen. Beauregard [bo're-gard], the Confederate commander, on the 11th of April summoned the fort to surrender. The demand was refused, and the first gun of the rebellion was fired by the Confederates at 30 minutes past 4, on the morning of Friday, April 12th. A terrific bombardment was kept up for thirty-four hours. Fort Sumter bravely replied; but, the hot shot of the enemy having set fire to the interior of the fort, and his provisions being almost exhausted, Major Anderson at length agreed to evacuate. The news of the fall of Sumter produced intense excitement throughout the north; and when, on the 15th of April, Pres. Lincoln issued a call for 75,000 men, to serve three months in putting down the rebellion, the loyal masses of the free states rose in one hearty and unanimous response.

620. The commencement of hostilities at Sumter decided

principal cabinet-officers. 619. What fort was still held by a national force ? Who commanded it? What attempt had been made by Pres. Buchanan? How was Fort Sumter now threatened? What led the Confederates to attack it? Give an account of the bombardment. What was the result? What call was issued by the president, April 15th ? How was it responded to ? 620. What was the effect of

[ocr errors]
« ПретходнаНастави »