always shield themselves behind the example of the papers they quote, the freedom of speech in Congress and at public meetings, and the publication of the Southern arguments under the sanction even of Congress. Besides unlimited abuse of public men has always been the first resource of papers of small circulation edited by hot-brained partisans with more zeal than discretion or integrity of purpose, and this seems to have passed from the times of the Aurora and the Citizen down to the present as a species of editorial heirloom.
This German quotes freely from the Tribune, Times, Journal of Commerce and Evening Post whenever an article in either of them can subserve his purposes and sustain him in expressing his opinions more obtrusively and obnoxiously without additional risk of Fort Warren; but perhaps nothing can have worse effect than the republication of Jefferson's letter to Giles; yet under the circumstances that can scarcely be objected to, but is so much the worse that he is regarded by the Germans as the soundest teacher of American liberty, &c., and surest exponent of American democracy.
You invite my opinion whether the tone of these papers is of character so treasonable as to call for prohibition of circulation through the mails. My fingers itch to write yes, but yet second thought suggests that the result would probably only increase circulation and influence. The surest counteraction would come from the columns of an ably conducted German paper from the now very gratifying progress of events, and of the earliest possible inoculation of our German citizens with a passable knowledge of our language.
Yours, very truly,
Case of Pierce Butler.
Pierce Butler, a citizen of Philadelphia, was arrested by order of the Secretary of War, but at what time or on what charge the Department of State has no information. He was sent to Fort Lafayette and there confined August 20, 1861. On the 24th day of September, 1861, he was released from confinement on his solemn pledge that during the present troubles he would do no act hostile to the United States and would not visit South Carolina without a passport from the Secretary of State. - From Record Book, State Department, "Arrests for Disloyalty. "
WAR DEPARTMENT, Washington, August 15, 1861.
Honorable WILLIAM MILLWARD, U. S. Marshal, Philadelphia:
Arrest Pierce Butler, of Philadelphia; make careful examination for commission from the Southern Confederacy. Send him at once under guard to Fort Hamilton.
Secretary of War.
PHILADELPHIA, September 18, 1861.
General CAMERON, Secretary of War.
MY DEAR SIR: I have a letter from William Roche Wister* this morning stating he had handed you my letter of the 16th* about Pierce
* Not found.