Which Records how the general got his commission, and returned to new York, with several other things common to politicians.
Several days had elapsed, the general’s letter was before the cabinet, and many were the speculations as to what sort of a mission a man with such strange intellect was capable of filling. It must be confessed that his letter afforded the cabinet no little diversion; indeed, many were the members who marvelled at the queer mixture of sense and nonsense it contained. And the more they amused themselves in pondering over it, the more did they seem to find veins of good sense concealed in it. If, then, one agreed he was fool enough to be harmless in his associations with the people to whom he might be accredited, certainly if sent to some obscure and remote part of the earth, he had sense enough for the small service that would be required of him as a diplomatist. And as a dumb man could perform some excellent parts when left to himself, and was sure not to get into mischief from the too free use of his tongue, so also would there be peace between nations, the representatives of which would not understand each other. Another agreed that it were strange indeed that a man who had been so feted by the authorities of New York, and was represented by the newspapers as having rendered such important services to his party should apply for a mission so obscure. But on further consideration this was set down to his credit; for it was held that though he might be wild and extravagant in some things, he had at least the virtue of being modest in his demands, which was rare in office-seekers at this day. Further, there could not be a doubt but that he was one of those persevering gentlemen who would give the department much annoyance with his importunities, and the shortest method of getting rid of him would be to give him the mission. It was, therefore, jocularly agreed to grant his prayer; and the Secretary was forthwith charged to prepare his instructions and provide him with the necessary credentials.