Ways to Stem Army Desertions Discussed by Lincoln Cabinet

February 3, 1863

At regular Tuesday Cabinet meeting, there is a discussion of whether an army deserter should be executed as a way to discourage desertion.

Responding to a visit by former Mississippi Senator Henry Foote, President Lincoln

writes: “To-day Senator Foote calls and asks that William H. Hodges, of Mass. 17 next June, and nephew of Mrs. Foote, may be sent to West-Point. He says the boy is a fine scholar, and of uncommonly fine physical development.”

Ellen Ewing Sherman, wife of General William T. Sherman, writes President Lincoln.  This time, instead of making about her husband, she writes about her brother: “It has been a long time since I addressed you, but when I had that honor I beleive you knew me to be sincere. Subsequent events very soon proved my husband’s sanity ability and honor. On the grounds of all that I, personally, have endured for the great cause, during the long absence and perilous duties of my husband, in bearing alone, the cares and sorrows of my young family; and still more, on the grounds of my unwavering devotion to the Administration, and to you, Mr. Lincoln, as its head, I now presume to ask you for a favor and to add that I shall be warmly grateful to you for it.  It is simply the promotion to the rank of Brig. General of my brother Col. Charles Ewing. At my earnest persuasion my brother Thomas Ewing Jr. will present to you his claims with reasons that explain why his name has not been sent to you long since by Gen’l. Sherman. He will also hand you a copy of a letter from Gen’l [John]Schofield the original of which has been sent by mistake to my brother Charles at Savannah. I am confident you will grant my request but I will reserve to myself the pleasure of writing you a letter of thanks when you have conferred the honor.”   The Ewings were a prominent Ohio political family.

Published in: on February 3, 2013 at 9:00 am  Leave a Comment  

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