Cabinet Meeting Discusses Military Situation

May 10, 1864

Cabinet meeting. Gideon Welles writes in his diary: “At the Cabinet, the President read dispatches from General Grant, General Butler, General Sherman, and some others. I had previously seen some of these dispatches. They were all in good and encouraging tone. There have been some conflicting doubts in regard to General Wadsworth, who is undoubtedly slain, and his body is, I think, in the hands of the Rebels. Few nobler spirits have fallen in this war. He should, by good right and fair-dealing, have been at this moment Governor of New York, but the perfidy of Thurlow Weed and others defeated him. I have always believed that Seward was, if not implicated, a sympathizer in that business. No purer or more single-minded patriot than Wadsworth has shown himself in this war. He left home and comforts and wealth to fight the battles of the Union.”

A scout came in this P.m. with dispatches from General Grant. He brings information that General Sedgwick was killed yesterday by a sharpshooter. He was among the good and brave generals, though not of the class of dashing ing, I apprehend, than this, and his loss at this juncture will be felt by the army and country.

Journalist Noah Brooks write: “The past few days of suspense and intense anxiety have been succeeded by a relief of substantial good news; our most ardent hopes have been realized by the good tidings from the front of battle, and yesterday and last night the excitement over the glorious news was unparalleled, even in Washington. On every street corner and public place hundreds of men were gathered in knots, discussing or inquiring about the military situation, and last evening the entire city was ablaze with joy upon learning that Grant had pressed the rebels past their old battle ground of the Wilderness, and was driving them before him toward Richmond. About nine o’clock in the evening, the excitement of the populace having risen to a fever heat, an impromptu procession was formed in front of Willard’s and preceded by a band of music the crowd marched up to the White House, where a fine serenade was given the President, and he appeared at the door, stepping out among the sovereigns who were crowded around the entrance. Order being restored, he proceeded to thank the assemblage for the compliment, which he thought would not have been bestowed if they were not anxious to hear from his own lips the confirmation of the good news which was in circulation on the street.”

Former Illinois Senator Orville H. Browning writes in his diary: “At Presidents in morning with Mr Ewing about Adml Wilkes & Capt. Blacks cases. Genl Oglesby called and spent sometime in the afternoon.”

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Published in: on May 10, 2014 at 9:00 am  Leave a Comment  

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