June 19, 1863

Macomb Journal
June 19, 1863

The Latest News.

            The latest news from the East is of an exciting character.  It appears that Lee’s whole army is on the move northward, and there is no doubt that an extensive plan of invasion in intended. – Lee’s army is said to number 93,000, divided into three grand divisions moving upon different points North.  A rebel force of 20,000 cavalry are reported at Chambersburg, Pa.  The utmost excitement prevails in the States threatened by this invasion, and the people are rushing by thousands to the rescue.  Harper’s Ferry is invested by the rebels on the Virginia side, but it is thought the garrison can hold out against any force the rebels can raise.

The Governor of New York, is sending on new troops as fast as possible. – It is thought probable that the next great battle will be fought in Maryland, and perhaps on the old field of Antietam.

The latest news from Vicksburg represents the siege as progressing satisfactorily.  Gen. Grant still holds the city in his iron grip, and not many days can elapse before that stronghold will be in Federal possession.


Rebel Invasion.

            In our telegraph column we give the main particulars of the rebel invasion of Pennsylvania, from which it will be seen that Lee proposes to transfer the war from Southern to Northern soil. – The part of Pennsylvania invaded is thickly settled and forage and provisions are abundant.  The rebel General must be driven to desperation, or he would never risk his army by taking it into Pennsylvania.  We hope and trust that Hooker will so work the game that he will never get back to his old entrenchments, and we believe he will.  That the people of the States invaded will rise up en masse to drive out the rebels, we have no doubt, and Lee will be very likely to meet with an opposition he little expected by the militia of these States.  A bold stroke of Generalship now upon the part of Hooker will destroy the rebel army.


The Lying Whelps.

            The Copperheads who issued the call for the grand pow-wow at Springfield, among other things, state that as the Governor has refused to do anything for the relief of the soldiers, the Copperheads are expected to be prepared for a hat collection for the aid of the soldiers.  If lying was punished by imprisonment in tophel, the devil would have every soul of them.  No man in this nation has done more for the soldiers than has Governor Yates, and while he has been watching over sick bids and carrying comfort to thousands of our sick and wounded soldiers, his slanderers have been concocting treason, passing resolutions declaring them murderers – refusing to vote money to relieve their wants, and by aiding and comforting the enemy prolonging the war.  Let the traitors keep their dollars.  The soldiers, if they knew the source from whence they came, would scorn to touch a dollar of the money or partake of an article purchased by these slanderers, blacklegs and traitors.


Springfield Captured!

            The rebels have possession of Springfield, the Capital of Illinois.  The vanguard of the rebel host arrived and took possession on the 16th.  The rank and file were in possession on the 17th.  Of course they did not take possession by force of arms, but then they had treason in their hearts and on their tongues.  The occasion that called them together is to sympathize and praise the condemned traitor Vallandigham.  Its a pity that Jeff Davis could not make a swoop down on them and take his own to himself.


The Copperhead Legislature Adjourned

            The conspirators composing the Copperhead Legislature of this State, were brought up with a sudden jerk on Wednesday, of last week, by a message from Gov. Yates, adjourning the body to the month of January, 1865.  The treasonable crew were much surprised when the message was read, but the Senate immediately adjourned.  The members of the House, not satisfied with the mischief they had already done, denounced the message as unconstitutional, and threatened to proceed with business.  However, wiser counsels prevailed, and after considerable loud talk and harmless threats, the gang dispersed.  This act upon the part of Gov. Yates, will meet with the hearty approval of every man who feels an interest in the welfare of the State. – The majority had steadily refused to pass any act that was calculated to advance the interests of the people, but their whole time was spent in passing political resolutions and private bills, for the benefit of individuals.  The Governor had become fully satisfied that nothing good could come from so corrupt a set of demagogues, and he very wisely seized upon the first constitutional opportunity to break up the institution.  The Constitution provides that in case the two Houses disagree as to the time of adjournment, the Governor shall have the power to prorogue them.  The Senate on the 8th inst. passed a resolution to adjourn at 6 o’clock of that day.  The House amended by inserting the 22d day of June. – The Senate refused to concur, which placed the Legislature in the hands of the Governor, and thank fortune he had courage to strangle the traitorous thing.


Meeting at the Court House.

            Pursuant to a previous call made by the citizens of Macomb and vicinity, a meeting was held at the Court House in Macomb, on Monday, June 15th, 1863, for the purpose of making arrangements to celebrate in a becoming manner the next anniversary of American Independence.  The meeting was organized by appointing Loven Garrett, Esq., Chairman, and J. B. Cummings, Secretary.  The object of the meeting having been briefly stated by Alex. McLean, on motion, it was agreed that the celebration be gotten up as a general “Pic Nic,” and that all citizens of McDonough and adjoining counties be invited to participate.

On motion, the following Committees were appointed.

Committee of arrangements.

            Alex. McLean, J. P. Updegraff, Jos. Burton, C. M. Ray, N. J. Graves and J. H. Baker.

Committee to Procure Music.

            R. W. Smith, L. Sisker, A. McLean, Alex. Massey.

Committee to Solicit Funds to Defray Incidental Expenses.

            E. A. Floyd, W. E. Withrow, James H. Randolph.

On Motion, Jos. Burton, Esq., was appointed to confer with F. Chandler, Esq., and ascertain if the Fair Grounds could be procured in which to hold said celebration.  Said Committee, after conferring with Judge Chandler, reported to the meeting that the “Fair Grounds,” were at our disposal.

On motion, all benevolent and civic societies and associations in the county be invited to participate.

On motion, ordered that the proceedings of this meeting be published in the city papers.

On motion, meeting adjourned.


                                    J. B. Cummings, Sec’y.


Hot, Hotter, Hottest. – The weather for the past week has been hot in the extreme.  The thermometer standing at 96 in the shade several times.


Army Correspondence.

Hospital No. 21, Nashville, Tenn.,
May 9, 1863.

Dear Sister: I received your very welcome letter day before yesterday; I was glad to hear of the good health of yourself and family, also to hear from mother.

I am enjoying very good health at this time, and have been quite hearty ever since I have been in the service.  My wife is also here and well.

In your letter you have made so many suggestions and inquiries, that whether I shall be able to make satisfactory replies to all of them or not remains to be seen.  It is easy to answer all of these questions to the satisfaction of any one who disposed to see.  But as the old saw has it –

“Convince a man against his will,
And he’s of the same opinion still.”

            So the copperheads of the North are the determined allies of the traitors in the South, and no argument or evidence no matter how conclusive it may be, unless it is made of hemp, will convince them of the enormity of their sin.

You ask, “is this a war for the negro?”  I answer no! emphatically no !!  This war was begun by men who were no friends of the negro.  Men whose only object was to still more barbarously enslave the black race.  Mr. A. H. Stevens, the present vice-president of the so-called Southern Confederacy, has declared that slavery is the chief corner stone of Government.  Can it be that this is a war for the negro, if it was made by the most inveterate enemies of that race?  And for what purpose was this war begun?  Let Jeff. Davis and his whelps answer.  Davis in his speech in Montgomery, Alabama, after he was elected President of the Confederate States, said, “We want no compromise; we want no concessions.  What we do want is our independence of the Yankee Government, and any body that interferes with that independence shall small southern powder and feel southern steel.”

It is here unequivocally stated as one of objects of the war to break up the Government and divide the country, to establish an independent Government the chief corner stone of which is slavery.

I know that many lying copperheads are daily purjuring their souls in an attempt to make the people believe that this is a war, made by the North on the people of the South.  But I have shown you by the testimony of the president and vice-president, of the whole traitor clan, what the objects  of the war are, and let us see who begun it.  All sensible men know that at Fort Sumter, in Charleston harbor, the ball was opened before a single man had been called for to support the Government.  That Fort being reduced, the army of traitors took up their march for Washington, and rebel secretary of war declared that before thirty days, with the power of Divine Providence, the flag of the Confederate States should wave over the capital at Washington.  But Divine Providence did not favor, and the rebel flag did not wave.

Mr. Toombs, of Georgia, declared that before twelve months he expected to be able to count his slaves at the foot of Bunkerhill, near Boston.  By this time it became manifest that something must be done or all would be lost.  An army of 25,000 men was marching from Richmond with the declared intention of capturing Lincoln and his cabinet, or seizing the archives of the nation.  It was at this juncture that Mr. Lincoln made the call for 75,000 men.  Thus showing that he was not asking for men to make war on the South, but too suppress a rebellion, which he too confidently hoped would last but a few days.

All well informed men know that the South begun to erect batteries bearing on Fort Sumter, before Mr. Lincoln was inaugurated president.  And for four years the traitor Floyd, aided and abetted by other members of Congress, who had taken a solemn oath to support the Constitution and Government of the United States, had been stealing the arms and munitions of war, belonging to the Government, with the long cherished purpose of its overthrow.

In the face of all these facts, is it possible that there is yet an American citizen so hardened in falsehood as to face the record and say this is a war for the negro, made by the North? – Shame on the man who would degrade his humanity by stooping to such falsehood.

I do not pretend to deny that this war may result in good to the negro.  I think it will.  The necessities of war may be such as to make it necessary for the Government to deprive the rebels of their slaves as a war measure. – It is easy to see that while the rebels keep their slaves, their farms will be cultivated and food furnished to the army.  But if we take away their negroes, they will have to go home and till their own fields and raise their own bread.  Thus their armies will be weakened, and the war will soon end.  In this way the rebels are forcing us to free their slaves, a thing we never intended to do, until we have reluctantly been forced to it by their stubborn resistance and rebellion.  This being so, it does not follow that this is a war made by the North for the benefit of the negro, no more than it follows that because the army have to shoot away immence quantities of lead to conquer their enemies, that hence it is the object of the war to shoot away lead.  The reasoning is precisely the same.

We shoot leaden bullets to kill and wound our enemies, and thus weaken him, and we conquer.  So we take his negroes and stop the supply of food, and thus weaken our enemy, and likewise conquer him and save many lives.

Any school boy ought to be ashamed to argue as some of the northern copperheads do on this subject, and I am well convinced that nothing but a covert desire for the success of the rebellion can induce them to do so.  I think I have made it sufficiently plain that this war is waged on the part of the Government for no other purpose than to suppress the rebellion and maintain the Government of our fathers.

You say the copperheads call this a wicked war.  So do I.  No such iniquity as this was was ever perpetrated by any man or set of men not devoted soul and body to the service of the devil.

I have already shown you that the South begun it, and of course they must bear the guilt.  But the northern copperheads are equally guilty.  For this war would have ended long ago if it had not been for the encouragement the copperheads gave to the south to hope for help from the north.  This was the “fire-in-the-rear” that was threatened by the Chicago Times.

It is plain to every sensible man that those who are crying out against the war and against the Government, are doing it in hope that they may cause our army to relax its vigilance and energy that the rebels may triumph.

I have seen enough to convince me since I have been with the army in the south, that the actions of the copperheads have given the rebels more encouragement to hope for success than anything else that has ever happened has done.

There may be some excess for some of them on the score of ignorance, but that will not save them from the wrath to come.

You well know that I have always been a Democrat of the straitest kind.  But it is with great pleasure I now assert that whenever to follow the Democratic party requires me to become a traitor to my country, or to give encouragement to one.  I would see the whole party with all its adherents in uttermost corner of the bottomless pit, before I would go with it one step farther.  This is the feeling of nine-tenths of the soldiers in the army, no matter want their politics were before they enlisted.  If this copperhead faction get control of the party, then the party itself will be a hissing and by-word for all time to come, just as the name “tory” is applied to the domestic enemies of our country, at the time of the great revolution.

The people of the south know that their cause is hopeless under the present Administration, but seeing that so many men professing to belong to the Democratic party are in deep sympathy with them, they are encouraged to hold out, if possible, till after the next president election, in the hope that so many loyal voters may be absent in the army that these copperheads may be able to elect the next president, and thus throw the whole Government at once into their hands.

It is for these reasons that I say the copperheads are responsible for every day this war lasts.  And herein lies the answer to your question of “how long this war is to last.”  If you will ask these northern traitors how long they intend to give the dastardly and cowardly encouragement to the rebels in our front, the answer will tell you how long the war will last, for we can put this rebellion down in one month if it receives no help from behind.  But a time of retribution is coming.  When this army goes back home these lying traitors will have to hide their heads and stop their blatant mouths or it will go hard with them.

It is said there are as many Democrats in the army as Republicans.  This is not so, and nineteen-twentieths of those that are here are either violently opposed to the copperheads or ultra abolitionists.  In beginning this war, the south and pro-slavery men did more to abolish slavery and have freed more slaves than all the abolitionists have ever done, or could have done in a thousand years to come.  Verily the slaveholders have reason to pray for deliverance from their friends.

To go into the army and see these butternuts at home will soon cure any copperhead of whatever sympathy for the rebels he may have started out with.  On the contrary, to stay at home and fully endorse the copperheads, soon deprives a man of his own self-respect, and prepares him for every extent of perfidity.  In short, it is the devil’s pit that he has dug, into which he casts men that they may be deprived of all virtue, and they immediately resort to every kind of lies and deception to hide the enormity of their position from the world.  They have shown that murder and riots are the congenial elements of their nature, and the law alone restrains them from further showing their sympathy with the enemies of this country.

I believe the war will end in despite  of the copperheads, before Lincoln’s Administration at an end.  That is will end, and end right I have unbounded confidence.  I believe that God is on the side of the right, and although we may be made to pass through fire to purify us, we shall ultimately succeed.  Just now we hear of the junction of Grant’s and Banks’ armies or the Mississippi, and occupation of Jackson, the capital of that State.  Richmond is closely besieged and on short rations.  In this department we are steadily clearing the way for a stroke when the proper moment comes.

The rebels in this region, in pursuit of their rights, ever remind me of “Jafhat in pursuit of a father.”  They seek in every place but the right one.

I know that many noble fellows will have to lay down their lives on the gory battle field ere this war is ended.  Poor fellows, innocent of any crime, yet in defence of their country and homes, in defence of the Government which protects “the loved ones at home,” they have bravely faced the cannon’s mouth.  Does not the blood of the slaughtered thousands of our brothers cry from the ground for vengeance on those who have begun this war, and the copperheads that are encouraging them to keep it up?  But we must remember for national sins, the nation must suffer the innocent with the guilty.  In this however, there is no great evil without its counterbalancing good.  As did our fathers in the war of the revolution, we suffer now that the nation shall enjoy the blessings of innocence and peace hereafter.

I hope to see the principal fighting of this war finished up this summer, and perhaps we can go home next spring.  Before returning home we will have to see the civil authorities well established, and the guerillas thoroughly cleaned out, so that peace will remain here as well as at home.

I want you to give my best wishes and love to all my friends, and my everlasting defiance and detestation to all copperheads and cowardly sympathizers with treason.  Tell them I can admire a brave and manly foe, that will come out and face me, and take the responsibility of and defend his position in the eyes of the world.  But I spit upon the cowardly thieves that skulk in the rear and urge on their more honorable allies in the front.

I must now close, good bye now.  I may be up to see you if I live till fall, and perhaps I may then have a chance to see many of our friends and talk more on this question.  In the meantime write to me as often as you can.

Yours affectionately,
M. M. Houton,
Surgeon, 86th Illinois Volunteers.



            The Colchester M. E. Church will be dedicated on the 21st of this month, at 10 ½ o’clock A. M., by Rev. W. H. Hunter, probably assisted by Rev. R. Hart.  Ministers and laity of contiguous charges are invited to attend.

W. B. Cariters.

Macomb, June 8th, 1863.



            Holders of City and School Orders can present the same for payment at the store of C. M. Ray.                                                                                                   W. W. PROVINE,
Treasurer and School Agent.


4th of July Celebration.

            We understand that arrangements are being made to have a regular old fashioned 4th of July Celebration in this city.  We are also informed that different Lodges of Good Templars in this county propose to meet here and join in celebrating the day.  This is good.  Let us once more drop the [?] and vexations of business – the [?]tion to party and the scramble after place and power, and unite as partners in celebrating the anniversary of [?] National Independence.  The programe of arrangement will be published next week.


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