Abraham Lincoln, Volume II eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 377 pages of information about Abraham Lincoln, Volume II.
have been stigmatized even as a cabal.  Plenty of people were ready to tell him stories innumerable of Chase’s hostility to him, and contemptuous remarks about him; but to all such communications he quietly refused to give ear.  What Mr. Chase thought or felt concerning him was not pertinent to the question whether or no Chase would make a good chief justice.  Yet it was true that Montgomery Blair would have liked the place, and the President had many personal reasons for wishing to do a favor to Blair.  It was also true that the opposition to Mr. Chase was so bitter and came from so many quarters, and was based on so many alleged reasons, that had the President chosen to prefer another to him, it would have been impossible to attribute the preference to personal prejudice.  In his own mind, however, Mr. Lincoln really believed that, in spite of all the objections which could be made, Mr. Chase was the best man for the position; and his only anxiety was that one so restless and ambitious might still scheme for the presidency to the inevitable prejudice of his judicial duties.  He had some thought of speaking frankly with Chase on this subject, perhaps seeking something like a pledge from him; but he was deterred from this by fear of misconstruction.  Finally having, after his usual fashion, reached his own conclusion, and communicated it to no one, he sent the nomination to the Senate, and it received the honor of immediate confirmation without reference to a committee.


[73] The rank had been held by Washington; also, but by brevet only, by Scott.

[74] For curious account of his interview with Mr. Lincoln, see N. and H. viii. 340-342.

[75] In this connection, see story of General Richard Taylor, and contradiction thereof, concerning choice of route to Richmond, N. and H. viii. 343.

[76] This was the rule which provided that if, at the count, any question should arise as to counting any vote offered, the Senate and House should separate, and each should vote on the question of receiving or not receiving the vote; and it should not be received and counted except by concurrent assent.



When Congress came together in December, 1864, the doom of the Confederacy was in plain view of all men, at the North and at the South.  If General Grant had sustained frightful losses without having won any signal victory, yet the losses could be afforded; and the nature of the man and his methods in warfare were now understood.  It was seen that, with or without victory, and at whatever cost, he had moved relentlessly forward.  His grim, irresistible persistence oppressed, as with a sense of destiny, those who tried to confront it; every one felt that he was going to “end the job.”  He was now beleaguering Petersburg,

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