The events of the 21st instant and the retreat of the U. S. Army from the field near Manassas Junction demonstrate the necessity of a greatly increased national force; and although no formal requisition has been made upon me by the Secretary of War, nor any apportionment of troops as the quota for this State communicated, yet the events referred to indicate clearly the necessity of exercising the discretionary power conferred on me by the aforesaid act for raising and organizing additional regiments. Orders will therefore be issued immediately to the adjutant and inspector general for enlisting the Fourth and Fifth Regiments of Volunteers for three years, or during the war, to be tendered to the General Government so soon as it may be practicable to arm, equip, and discipline the troops for service.
By His Excellency the Governor:
GEORGE A. MERRILL,
[AUGUST 11, 1861. - For Thomas A. Scott to T. W. Sherman, in regard to the preparation of an expedition to rendezvous on Long Island Sound, see Series I, Vol. VI, p. 168.]
BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA:
Whereas a joint committee of both Houses of Congress has waited on the President of the United States and requested him to "recommend a day of public humiliation, prayer, and fasting, to be observed by the people of the United States with religious solemnities, and the offering of fervent supplications to Almighty God for the safety and welfare of these States, His blessings on their arms, and a speedy restoration of peace;"
And whereas it is fit and becoming in all people, at all times, to acknowledge and revere the supreme government of God; to bow in humble submission to His chastisement; to confess and deplore their sins and transgressions, in the full conviction that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and to pray, with all fervency and contrition, for the pardon of their past offenses, and for a blessing upon their present and prospective action;
And whereas when our own beloved country, once, by the blessing of God, united, prosperous, and happy, is now afflicted with faction and civil war, it is peculiarly fit for us to recognize the hand of God in this terrible visitation, and in sorrowful remembrance of our own faults and crimes as a nation, and as individuals, to humble ourselves before him, and to pray for His mercy - to pray that we may be spared further punishment, though most justly deserved; that our arms may be blessed, and made effectual for the re-establishment of law, order, and peace throughout the wide extent of our country; and that the inestimable boon of civil and religious liberty, earned under His guidance and blessing, by the labors and sufferings of our fathers, may be restored in all its original excellence:
Therefore I, Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States, do appoint the last Thursday in September next as a day of humiliation,