President Lincoln Dismisses Weather Crank

April 25, 1863

Francis L. Capen writes President Lincoln, pressing the government to use his alleged meteorological skills and guarantees “to furnish Meteorological information that will save many a serious sacrifice.” On his attached card, he writes: “Thousands of lives & millions of dollars may be saved by the application of Science to War. Francis L. Capen. Certified Practical Meteorologist & Expert in Computing the Changes of the Weather.” The letter requests a favorable reference to the War Department and concludes, “I will guarantee

Three days later, President Lincoln writes on the letter: “It seems to me Mr. Capen knows nothing about the weather, in advance. He told me three days ago that it would not rain again till the 30th. of April or 1st. of May. It is raining now & has been for ten hours. I can not spare any more time to Mr. Capen.”

President Lincoln tries to clarify the author  of Tennessee War Governor Andrew Johnson: “Gov. Johnson thinks it would be well to have the within added to his letter of instruction. If the Secretary of War sees no objection, I see none.

“In fine he is hereby [As a general instruction to guide your administration you are] authorized to exercise any and all [such] powers [as may be] necessary and proper to carry into full and fair effect the 4th. Section of the 4th. Article of the Constitution of the United States which declares `The United States shall guarantee to every state in this Union a republican form of Government, and further all [whatever] power necessary [may be necessary] in restoring to the people of Tennessee their civil and political rights under the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of Tennessee and the laws made in pursuance thereof.”

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Published in: on April 25, 2013 at 9:00 am  Leave a Comment  

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