Abraham Lincoln, Volume I eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 338 pages of information about Abraham Lincoln, Volume I.

[126] For accounts of this journey and statements of the evidence of a plot, see Schouler, Hist. of Mass. in Civil War, i. 59-65 (account by Samuel M. Felton, Prest.  P.W. & B.R.R.  Co.); N. and H. iii. ch. 19 and 20; Chittenden, Recoll. of Lincoln, x.; Holland, 275; Arnold, 183-187; Lamon, ch. xx. (this account ought to be, and doubtless is, the most trustworthy); Herndon, 492 (a bit of gossip which sounds improbable); Pinkerton, Spy of the Rebellion, 45-103.  On the anti-plot side of the question the most important evidence is the little volume, Baltimore and the Nineteenth of April, 1861, by George William Brown.  This witness, whose strict veracity is beyond question, was mayor of the city.  One of his statements, especially, is of the greatest importance.  It is obvious that, if the plot existed, one of two things ought to occur on the morning of February 23, viz.:  either the plotters and the mobsmen should know that Mr. Lincoln had escaped them, or else they should be at the station at the hour set for his arrival.  In fact they were not at the station; there was no sudden assault on the cars, nor other indication of assassins and a mob.  Had they, then, received knowledge of what had occurred?  Those who sustain the plot-theory say that the news had spread through the city, so that all the assassins and the gangs of the “Plug Uglies” knew that their game was up.  This was possible, for Mr. Lincoln had arrived in the Washington station a few minutes after six o’clock in the morning, and the train which was expected to bring him to Baltimore did not arrive in Baltimore until half after eleven o’clock.  But, on the other hand, the news was not dispatched from Washington immediately upon his arrival; somewhat later, though still early in the morning, the detectives telegraphed to the friends of Mr. Lincoln, but in cipher.  Just at what time intelligible telegrams, which would inform the public, were sent out cannot be learned; but upon any arrangement of hours it is obvious that the time was exceedingly short for distributing the news throughout the lower quarters of Baltimore by word of mouth, and there is no pretense of any publication.  But while the believers in the plot say, nevertheless, that this had been done and that the story of the journey had spread through the city so that all the assassins and “Plug Uglies” knew it in time to avoid assembling at the railway station about eleven o’clock, yet it appears that Mr. Brown, the mayor, knew nothing about it.  On the contrary, he tells us that in anticipation of Mr. Lincoln’s arrival he, “as mayor of the city, accompanied by the police commissioners and supported by a strong force of police, was at the Calvert Street station on Saturday morning, February 23, at 11.30 o’clock ... ready to receive with due respect the incoming President.  An open carriage was in waiting, in which I was to have the honor of escorting Mr. Lincoln through the city to the Washington

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Abraham Lincoln, Volume I from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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