WASHINGTON, May 6, 1865.
Major General W. T. SHERMAN,
Commanding Military Division of the Mississippi:
Your letters to Rawlins and myself written but the day after army departure from Raleigh have but just reached [me]. I answered them immediately, but concluded not to mail to Petersburg thinking it doubtful whether, now that it is so late, it would reach you before you would be starting back. I will not furnish copies of your letters to the Secretary of Wr and ask the publicationof them until I see you. I do not know how to answer your dipsatch asking whether you should submit to Halleck's insult contained in a dispatch published in the New York Herald of the 28th. I never say that dispatch except as published in the papers. I question whether it was not an answer, in Halleck's style, to directions from the Secretary of War, giving him instructions to do as he did. I do not know this to be the case, although I have spoken to Mr. Stanton on the subject. Your correspondence with Johnston has not yet been published. I have been absent from the city four or five days, and returning to-day and finding this to be the case, I requested its publication. It is promised for to-morrow. Although I did not agree with your in the advisability of adopting your agreement with Johnston of the 18th of April, yet it made nochange in my estimate of the services you have rendered, or of the services you can still render, and will on all proper occasions. I know very well it is a difference of opinion which time alone will decide who was right.
U. S. GRANT,
HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION OF THE MISSISSIPPI.
Steamer Russia, Beaufort Harbor, May 6, 1865-6 a. m.
Honorable S. P. CHASE,
Chief Justice United States, Steamer Wayanda:
DEAR SIR: On reaching this ship late last night I found your valued letter, with the printed sheet, which I have also read, but not yet fully matured. * I am not yet prepared to receive the negro on terms of political equality for the reasons that it will arouse passions and prejudices at the North, which superadded to the causes yet dormant at the South, might rekindle the war whose fires are now dying out, and by skillful management might be kept down. As you must observe, I prefer to work with known facts that to reason ahead to remote conclusions that by slower and natural laws may be reached without shock. By way of illustration, we are now weather bound; is it not better to lay quiet at anchor till these white-cap breakers look less angry and the southwest wind shifts? I think all old sailors will answer yes, whilst we impatient to reach our goal, are tempted to dash through, at risk of life and property. I am, wiling to admit that the conclusions you reach by pure mental process may be all correct, but don't you think it better first to get the ship of state in some order, that it may be handled and guided? Now at the South all is pure anarchy. The military power of the United States cannot reach the people who are spread over a vast surface of country. We can control the local State capitals, and it may be slowly shape political thoughts, but we cannot com-
*Chase to Sherman not found, but for "printed sheet" referred to, see Chase to Lincoln, April 11 and 12, pp. 427, 428.