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would not be a difficult task for McClellan's

army to capture Manassas, march upon Richmond, and enter that capital, “ but,” he added, emphatically, as if naming a conclusive objection,“ it would cost ten thousand men to do it.” McClellan's fear, however, was not of the great loss, but of defeat. He had the most exaggerated idea of the strength of the armies opposed to him. Lincoln bitterly said that if the commander had no use for his army, he would like to “borrow" it. "If McClellan can't fish,” he observed, “he ought to cut bait at a time like this.” Finally, he positively ordered a forward movement not later than February 22, which was to be made on a plan approved by him and some of his generals, and opposed by McClellan, who had one of his own; and the result was that McClellan had his way. The general opinion is that Lincoln showed remarkable intelligence in grasping the art of war on short notice, and that in his differences with some of his generals he was usually right on purely strategic matters, and always right on political grounds. There are some who think he interfered in too much detail, but they are few. His differences with McClellan on the purely military advantages of opposite plans are of interest mainly to military men. Some conclusions they reach about the President's character are: that he put an immense value on the safety of his capital; that he was able to see very clearly all kinds of military arguments; and that he felt the one absolutely certain thing was that indefinite delay wearied the North and gained nothing. McClellan would not move, however, and on March 9 came the news that the Confederates had retired from their position on the Potomac, feeling unable to hold it. This proof of the needlessness of McClellan's caution enraged the North. Lincoln removed him from the command of the armies of the United States March II, after the general had personally taken the field on hearing of the Confederate retreat. He retained command of the Army of the Potomac. For a time Stanton was practically the Commander-in-Chief, and a very bad one he is agreed to have been. Just as McClellan was about finally to meet the enemy, he heard that Lincoln, believing that Washington was unsafe, had retained for the defence of the capital a corps under McDowell which had been promised to McClellan for a particular purpose in the campaign. The excuse for the President's action is that McClellan had failed to carry out his agreement to leave Washington properly protected, and opinion is divided on the question of whether the President's act was justifiable. McClellan continued his tactics. May 3 the Confederates again withdrew just before he was ready to attack, and then the Northern army continued its advance. Lincoln's next interference was unfortunate. He forbade McDowell, who had finally been allowed to act under McClellan, to advance on the day he thought wisest, because, as one of McDowell's staff officers told Mr. Morse, it was Sunday, the day on which Bull Run had been fought, and he dreaded the omen.

Immediately after, he, perhaps influenced by Stanton's panic, withdrew McDowell from McClellan altogether, frightened by Stonewall Jackson's feint at the capital. McDowell protested in vain against being duped by Jackson's trick, but Lincoln was firm, and Jackson, having accomplished his purpose,

withdrew. The one thing that seemed able to make the President lose his head was a possible attack on Washington. It is also true, as Mr. Morse says, that although almost infallible in judgment, given time, he was slow, and this decision, like the one with which he spoiled the Sumter expedition, had to be made in haste. With this excuse of needless weakening, McClellan remained almost quiet until the Confederates forced him south to the James River. Some battles were fought, but not enough to count for anything, and the North, although not the army, was as indignant at McClellan as he was at the administration. The general's language of reproach was such that Lincoln's keeping him in command so long and answering him only with mild reason is another proof of rare patience.

Meantime no political step of immediate effect followed for some time after the appointment of Stanton. In March the President sent to Congress a resolution that the United States ought to give pecuniary aid to any state which might adopt gradual abolishment of slavery. . In his December message he had already suggested colonization of negroes freed under the act of August 6 in some “climate congenial to them.” He had always feared the race problems which would result from emancipation, and it was part of his slight grasp of certain mathematical truths that he believed colonization possible. Slavery was abolished in the District of Columbia, the President signing the bill April 16. In March, Representative Arnold, of Illinois, introduced a bill prohibiting slavery wherever Congress could prohibit it, in the territories and on all national property, such as forts and vessels; the bill passed, and Lincoln signed it, as he did another bill going far in the direction of freeing slaves whose owners had rebelled.

In many ways, however, he held back. In May he revoked an order of emancipation issued in the South by General Hunter, as he had already revoked that of General

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