Restine, esq., treasurer of this State; J. S. Athon, esq., State auditor; A. L. Roach, esq., and Thomas Dowling, esq., prominent and influential Democrats, to meet me at my office last evening.
They all responded to the invitation, and the Governor met with us. After informing them of the murders committed in Rush County and the indications of armed resistance at other points in the State, the Governor and myself both informed them that it was their duty as good citizens and as the representative men of their party to counsel obedience and submission to the laws, and to put forth all their influence to prevent resistance to the Government authorities.
They all professed an entire willingness to do this; said they would publish an address to the people to that effect, and expressed a willingness to visit the disaffected localities and address the people if it should become necessary. They at the same time said that the enrollment act was misapprehended, and that, owing to the n threatening that the Democrats would be drafted, great fears were entertained that the draft would not be fairly made, and that if I would make a statement of the main features of the enrollment act and of the manner in which the drawing would be conducted, it would do much to remove these apprehensions. I informed them that I had no objections to doing this, but I was satisfied that it would never reach the class of people sought to be influenced, and if it did reach them, would not be believed unless leading Democrats in opposition to the Administration would indorse my statements by expressing their confidence that the draft would be fairly and impartially made according to the requirements of the act.
They expressed a willingness to indorse my statements, and accordingly I this morning prepared a letter addressed to the leading Democrats before named, setting forth the main features of the enrolling act, explaining how the drawing was to be conducted, and telling them that they might assure the people not only that the drawing would be conducted with entire fairness, but in such a manner as to preclude all suspicion of dishonesty. I submitted the letter this morning to the gentlemen to whom it was addressed. They expressed themselves as entirely satisfied with the communication, desiring me to add, however, that I would, as far as practicable, be present at the drawings. I made the addition, and they are to publish in the Democratic papers my letter, with their address, indorsing my representations.
I suppose the letter and address will appear in the morning papers of to-morrow, and when it appears, I will send you a copy of both. In all this Governor Morton fully concurred.
Since writing the foregoing I have received information from Rush County (not official, however) that the provost-marshal of that district has arrested two men charged with the murder committed yesterday, and that the circumstantial evidence of their guilt is strong; also that the enrollment is quietly progressing in the sub-district in which the murder was committed, the people affording every facility in their power to insure it speedy completion. The military have orders to remain with the provost- marshal until the enrollment is completed in that sub-district.
I have the honor, colonel, to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Acting Assistant Provost-Marshal-General.