War of the Rebellion: Serial 118 Page 0724 PRISONERS OF WAR AND STATE, ETC.

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the Ohio within your department is liable to be increased by the presence of an indiscreet military officer, who will unnecessarily interfere with the political condition of the State and produce irritation by assuming military powers not essential to the preservation of the public peace. Great care is to be exercised in those States not to excite the apprehensions of the State Executives who are loyal and diligent in maintaining the authority of the Government.

Governor Morton has been distinguished for the zeal, ability and patriotism which he has on every occasion manifested during this war, and the necessity for a good understanding with him and with the Executives of Ohio and Illinois the President feels sure will not be understated by you. So far as it can be done with safety to the Government it is well to leave the administration within those States to their respective Governors and to consult them in regard to any coercive measures in respect to persons not in the military service or not engaged in actual hostility. Their familiarity with the temper of the people will enable you to judge to what extent such measures may or may not be advisable. It is not designed by the President to restrict you in the powers exercised by the commanders of other military departments but only to make such suggestions as are thought to be expedient for the public service. The natural aversion of our people to the exercise of military powers without necessity will be greatly stimulated by any feeling in the State Executives that the General Government is disposed to interfere in matters of administration which properly belong to them or which they are able to manage. The proper limit of military power in such cases is at their request to aid and not supersede the State authority.

No one can understand better than yourself what harm may be done by an indiscreet or foolish military officer, who is constantly issuing military proclamations and enter controversies upon questions that agitate the public mind. For this reason it is thought by the President that General Hascall is not adapted to the service in which he is engaged in the State of Indiana, and that if there be a necessity for a military officer in that State his place can be supplied by one of more prudence and discretion than he manifest.

The subject is commended by the President to your considerate judgment as one requiring immediate attention. It is not expected that with the arduous and responsible duties of your office you will be able under any circumstances to satisfy every one. The utmost that can be expected is to avoid unnecessary irritation.

Yours, truly,

EDWIN M. STANTON,

Secretary of War.

P. S. - Since writing the above letter the President has been informed that you have suppressed the publication or circulation of the Chicago Times in your department. He directs me to say that in his judgment it would be better for you to take an early occasion to revoke that order. The irritation produced by such acts is in his opinion likely to do more harm that the publication would do. The Government approves of your motives and desires to give you cordial and efficient support. But while military movements are left to your judgment, upon administrative questions such as the arrest of civilians and the suppression of newspapers not requiring immediate action the President desires to be previously consulted.

EDWIN M. STANTON,

Secretary of War.