War of the Rebellion: Serial 124 Page 0064 CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.

Search Civil War Official Records

command, and also give to him such information as you may deem beneficial to the service. He is specially recommended to your courtesy and protection.

Yours, truly,

EDWIN M. STANTON,

Secretary of War.

(Same to Major-Generals GRant and Summer.)

SARATOGA, N. Y.,

March 12, 1863.

To the PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, ABRAHAM LINCOLN:

The memorial of the religious society of Friends of Saratoga County respectfully represent and petition that:

In view of the late law of Congress compelling a compliance with military service, be all irrespective of conscientious objections, a law as yet ineffective until signed by the President, we, thy petitioners, respectfully yet earnestly call the attention to the sufficerings which such a law must necessarily subject a portion of the most loyal and law-abiding citizens of these United States. For we as a society entertain no factions opposition to our laws, but cheerfully comply therewith so far as their religious convictions will allow, but when the laws of our country contravene what they believe to he laws of God, a quiet submission to the former and a steadfast obedience to the latter have been the uniform practice of our society from its rise, a period of more than 200 years.

As it respects disloyalty it cannot exist in the conduct of any trues Friends. They do not allow themselves the use of any carnal weapons, even in self-defense, and cannot therefore use them even in redress of civil wrong. We in common with our fellow-citizens are now suffering the trials inseparable from a state of civil war, and a law requiring us to bear arms would subject us to trial to which our friends in the so-called "Confederate States" are not subjected, and to which neither they nor we could comply, let the consequence be what they might For though we love our country, and have no sympathy with rebellion, yet we love our blessed Lord more, and consider His commands more binding upon us than any that man can make, and His are, "My kingdom is not of this world, else would my servants fight," cannot fight.

We would therefore respectfully suggest, way may not our society in the North and South be permitted to pair off, for by so doing would not we aid our country as much as though all fought, admitting that we were equally represented? My petitioners would therefore respectfully by earnestly petition that our society be excused from military requisitions, not exclusively our society, but all who are with us restrained from compliance therewith from conscientious reasons. And we will continue to pray that whatever may befall, our suffering and bleeding country may soon be restored to peace and prosperity, and tat our beloved President may be endued with wisdom from heaven in the discharge of his arduous duties.

On behalf of the society.

JONA. DEVOL.

GEO. B. ADDY.