Congress is Gone but War Worries Continue

July 18, 1862

On a rainy day, presidential aide John G. Nicolay writes that “the adjournment of Congress took place, and which kept me on the run all the morning.  The President always goes to the Capitol on the day of adjournment in order to be at hand to sign the bills that are hurried through at the end of the session.  However as the Congressmen are getting away from the City as fast as possible I shall have a little more leisure in a few days.”  He adds: “I am heartily glad that Congress is at last gone, and am sure I shall enjoy the relief from the constant strain of petty cares and troubles which their presence imports.  They always have a multitude of trivial requirements, which keep me constantly vexed and anxious and constantly busy…”  Some congressmen linger in Washington with the kinds of requests that bother Nicolay.   Illinois Senator Lyman Trumbull and Wisconsin Senator James R. Doolittle meet with President Lincoln regarding patronage appointments.  After their meeting, President Lincoln writes Secretary of the Treasury Salmon P. Chase regarding Treasury tax assessors being recommended by the Wisconsin congressional delegation: “I am in favor of adopting their ‘slate’’ at once, and so disposing of one State.”

General George B. McClellan writes his wife: “I am inclined now to think that the Presdt will make Halleck comdr of the Army & that the first pretext will be seized to supersede me in command of this army — their game seems to be to withhold reinforcements & then to relieve me for not advancing — well knowing that I have not the means to do so. If they supersede me in command of the Army of the Potomac I will resign my commission at once; if they appoint Halleck Comg Genl I will remain in command of this army as long as they will allow me to.”

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

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