Former Ohio Governor William Dennison Takes Oath as Postmaster General

October 4, 1864

Secretary of the Navy Gideon Welles writes in his diary: “But little at the Cabinet of special importance. Governor Dennison, the new PostmasterGeneral, for the first time took his seat.”

Presidential secretary John G. Nicolay writes home: “Quite unexpectedly to myself, the President this morning asked me to go out to St. Louis to attend to some matters there for him….” Nicolay writes New York Tribune editor Horace Greeley: “I brought to the President’s notice your suggestion about the matter of exchange of prisoners, and learned from him the reason why nothing can be done about it at present. The reason is conclusive as you would at once appreciate and admit if I could see and tell you. All our political news continues good.”

In late afternoon President Lincoln visits Secretary of the Navy Gideon Welles: “Late in the afternoon the President called upon me to inquire respecting arrangements for a proposed exchange of naval prisoners which was making some disturbance at the War Department and with General Butler. For some fifteen months our naval officers and men who had been captured remained in Rebel prisons. Their number was not large, but the omission to exchange, whether from neglect or design, was justly causing dissatisfaction. For more than a year I had, at various times, made inquiry of the Secretary of War and at the War Department, generally oral, but sometimes by letter, and received evasive answers,—of difficulties on account of remoteness, of unusual prisoners, of refusal by the Rebels to exchange negroes, — but with assurances that matters would be soon adjusted. Some of our men we had learned were in irons and in close confinement, with slight prospect of relief. I gave the President briefly the facts, — that there had been no exchange of naval prisoners for fourteen or fifteen months, that in the exchanges going on no naval prisoners were embraced, that appeals earnest and touching had been made to me by our prisoners and by theirs, but I had been able to afford no relief.”

Former Illinois Senator Orville H. Browning writes in his diary“At Presidents in P.M. He at war Dept & did not see him.”

Supreme Court Justice David Davis writes President Lincoln regarding the recent death of Indiana District Judge Albert White: “I congratulate you upon the appointment of Govr Denison–

He is an honorable, highminded pure, & dignified– Few public men have won on me as he has– He is a wise & safe counsellor, & I do not believe that you will ever have cause to regret calling him to the place–

Is there any use of making an appointment for District Judge in Indiana, until after the Novr election? I think not. There is no court there until the first Tuesday in Novr. which I hold–

I am more & more impressed with the conviction that Judge {David] McDonald ought to be appointed– He has been a Lawyer all his life — & not a politicial– He is an admirable Lawyer & a pure upright man. He is poor, with 3 daughters & 5 grand children, dependent on him for support– I learn from Indiana, that some politicians have reported agt his soundness– Depend upon it — it is malicious– I know him to be a devoted friend of your administration

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Published in: on October 4, 2014 at 9:00 am  Leave a Comment  

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