President Lincoln Visits Army Hospital in Washington

May 18, 1862

First Lady Mary Todd Lincoln attends New York Avenue Presbyterian Church, a few blocks from the White House,  with Illinois Senator Orville H. Browning and his daughter.  “Mrs Lincoln called in the morning, and I and Emma went with her to Dr Gurleys Church,” writes  Browning in his diary.  “At 3 P M the President sent for me, and he and I rode out to the Hospital at Columbia College — Went all through it, and shook hands with and talked to all the sick and wounded.”  Such visits to the numerous army hospitals in the Washington area were often made by President Lincoln and more often by his wife.

During the Afternoon, president Lincoln met with Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton regarding General George M. McClellan’s persistent requests for more troops.  They continues to be concerned about the safety of Washington from Confederate attack.  Historian Kenneth Williams wrote: “The order was an important one, and in its preparation Stanton consulted not only with the President but with Generals Meigs, Joseph G. Totten, and James W. Ripley and Colonel Joseph P. Taylor.  The two civilians who were conducting the war were by no means trying to play things alone; nor were they seeking advice only from the elderly [General Ethan Allen] Hitchcock.”

Published in: on May 18, 2012 at 9:00 am  Leave a Comment  

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