The Constitution was a weekly newspaper in Middletown, Connecticut, published by Abner Newton.  The paper was solidly Republican, although the city was largely Democratic.

In honor of the 150th anniversary of the American Civil War, we have created this blog with excerpts fromThe Constitution to give a taste of the concerns and preoccupations of Middletown residents during this critical period in history.  Square brackets indicate additions that we have made.  ‘This city’ refers to Middletown.

From The Constitution, Wednesday, May 31, 1865 (volume 28, number 1431)

The War Ended.

It is hardly possible to feel, but nevertheless it is true, that the war is over. The last rebel force which was deemed of any account has at last surrendered to the national forces. This comprises the army under the command of Gen. Kirby Smith in Texas, including the remnant of the rebel navy. Nothing remains now but the guerillas, and it is impossible for them to exist long. Our brave boys will soon be homeward bound, and mingle again in civil pursuits. They have fought terrible battles and accomplished forced marches. It has not been for naught.—They have established the principles for which they contended, and have a government strong and powerful. For years to come, we hope to enjoy the blessings with which our labors have been awarded.


Washington specials state that Jeff. Davis will be indicted for treason, and that Hon. Francis P. Blair, is among the witnesses summoned to testify against him. It is also stated that Gen. Lee will be indicted.


Sixty days have not elapsed since the existence of a so-called Confederate Government. The heads of this pretended government ruled with despotic power over the masses. For four years they had waged a cruel and relentless war against a government whose only fault was that it had been too liberal and given of its treasures too munificently. These men, before they had committed the crimes which now place them before the country as felons and traitors, had been supported for years from the public treasury. They then claimed to be leaders of a party whose watchword was “equal rights to all men,” and that the “majority should rule.” Where the first corner was reached which placed them on different ground it is not necessary here to say. The political troubles from ’56 to ’61 needs no repetition. It was during those troubles that theories were advanced which were antagonistic to our prosperity. Used to having their own way, they attempted to force upon a free and enlightened people doctrines tinctured strongly of despotism and dismemberment of the national Union. As they were about to contest the point with the sword they declared that the “minority should rule.” Years of desperate fighting have ensued. As has been stated, sixty days have not elapsed since the government which they were in hopes of establishing, maintained the field a large army. The valor of their troops had been tested on many bloody fields. Diplomatic ability had been exerted that foreign countries might recognize and aid them. The end however proved that their traitorous schemes were destined to recoil back upon them. To-day there is not a rebel army in the field east of the Mississippi. Every town and city claimed by them acknowledges the national government at Washington and respects the American flag, the emblem of our strength. But where are the leaders? Some are inmates of cells and dungeons, while others are fugitives on the earth. Their glory has departed never to return. Their frail fabric crumbled in an hour. Our national government emerges from the conflict, strong. It is hoped that the experience of the past will unite us more firmly, and years of prosperity will be vouchsafed to us.


The rebel general Forrest, after being killed (on paper) about forty times, at last emerges into positive entity as a living reality. A few days ago he publicly gave up the hopeless cause of the rebellion, and issued an address of that purport to his troops, closing by advising them to accept the decrees of fate with good grace and behave with becoming loyalty.


The Review of the Soldiers.—The imposing military pageant at Washington on Wednesday and Thursday last, in which an army of over 200,000 comprised of those who had voluntarily offered their services and lives in defense of their country, passed in review before the executive and other dignitaries, was one of the grandest sights ever witnessed. It is estimated that over one hundred thousand spectators were present, the review occupying the best part of two days. At the head of their respective corps were the noble officers who had led in many a bloody fray. Then followed the rank and file, with their battle flags and trophies of war. Such a sight, showing the strength and power of this government to subdue its foes at home or abroad, was one never to be forgotten. May the choicest favors of our country be showered upon its brave defenders, and to the memory of those who lie beneath the soil. Their work is done and victory theirs.


Connecticut Soldiers.—At the great review of Sherman’s armies on Wednesday, the column of the Army of Georgia, under Gen. Slocum, was led by the gallant Fifth Connecticut, the first regiment of the first brigade, first division, Twentieth corps. The commander of this corps, who rode at the head of the column, was Major Gen. Mower, of New London, in whose honor, resolutions of thanks were passed by the Legislature last week. The Twentieth Conn. regiment was also in the column, attached to the third brigade of the third division, Twentieth corps. The company raised in Portland and Cromwell belonged to this regiment.


Connecticut Soldiers Orphan House.—At a meeting recently held in Hartford, the directors of the benevolent institution named above, decided to enter at once upon the work assigned them in their act of incorporation. They appointed the Rev. E. B. Huntington of Stamford, their agent, with authority to raise funds and prepare the way for opening, as soon as possible, a suitable room for the needy and deserving children of our soldiers. We commend this good and timely move to the confidence and support of our readers. There can be no doubt as to the need of such a home. The names of the officers of the corporation, of whom Gov. Buckingham is president, is ample guarantee that neither vigor nor wisdom will be wanting in its management.


Negro Suffrage.—The resolution in favor of striking out the word “white” from the suffrage clause of the State Constitution was passed by the House on Thursday last.

Connecticut Legislature.

… The following are extracts from Mr. Douglas’ speech on negro suffrage.

Mr. Speaker, I am aware that a strong party exists to-day who are hostile in the extreme to this measure. What ground they occupy or upon what principle they attempt to justify their position I am not fully advised. Some of them have declared in former days that as certain states in the Union tolerate slavery and consequently placed the black man below the whites, therefore it would not be well for us to elevate him in the free states, as difficulties would arise which might endanger the peace and security of the nation. However this argument might have been considered before war came upon us, it has no weight at this time, for the peace of the government has been destroyed by slavery, and to place us back to peaceful days, by one grand edict of the general government slavery has been forever abolished.

Right of equality has been producing revolution and civil commotion ever since the world began. It is this right which has been contested on every battle field from Marathon, where the power of a mighty empire to enslave mankind was broken, to Saratoga which established the right of America to rule herself and forced its recognition upon the world. To maintain equality has been the great motive which has prompted our people to such Herculean effort to crush down the rebellion whose leaders have arrogantly asserted their superiority. When we reflect upon the record of bravery and sacrifice in the struggle from which we are now emerging, let us not forget what the black soldier has done. He, not entitled to the privilege of a citizen let us remember, and with no solemn oath resting upon him to maintain and support the constitution and government, has taken upon himself the armor of battle and gone forth, under much less inducement and pay than his comrades in arms, and through the same perilous night kept watch on the outposts, sharing the same hardships, making the same tedious marches, forded the same cold streams, built bridges under the same deadly fire, camped on the same field, and whether he rested his weary head on the hard stone, or pillowed it on a clump in the damp miasmatic swamp, they were soldiers together, the white and black—when the order “forward” was given, his attention was arrested at the same instant as the white, and at the word “march” he went to meet the same fate.

When the evening was approached, and the contest raged in its fiercest fury, the blue coat, covering a black man’s breast, shielded it no more than the white man’s, and often when an assault was made, the black ensign, clasping the starry banner what has floated in victory over many a rampart, might be seen in the last agonies of death, mingling his life’s blood in the same pool that was red with the marks of white soldiers fallen. These are the services he has rendered his country. The only monument built to perpetuate the record of them are those, imperishable and beautiful, which his bayonet have made.

Mr. Speaker, the constitutional amendment does not contemplate special privileges for one class of men but simply removing the barriers upon their path and allowing them to commence the race with us. We do not desire by special legislation to uphold the black man, or do anything with him. We contend that, standing in the eyes of the constitution and laws once equal, he will maintain himself; when he proves, by certain action, that he is incapable taking part in government, then it will be time to legislate for him.—And if he is guilty of treason—if he violates the obligations resting upon him, if he steals the public property or runs up, in place of the stars and stripes the secession flag, then we will favor shooting him exactly as we have been doing with the white rebels these four years past.

When the cloud of rebellion, which had been gathering for thirty years, burst in such wild fury, it echoed but the sentiment of a class of people who were determined to establish slavery on a sure foundation. They meant that the states that seceded should become a slave empire, based upon the rights of white men alone. The people of the North would not allow the territory constituting the United States to be encroached upon, or the Union to be dismembered, so from our great leader was given the word “To arms! The constitution and the Union must be preserved.”

The citizens from mountain and valley, from city and hamlet, came metamorphosed speedily to true and hardy soldiers. Time moved on apace—victory came not as all hearts prayed, but darkness brooded over the land. The hand of power behind the scene was moving our armies like dioramic figures, still victory would not cheer us. The great plan of civilization and liberty was not yet completed. Suddenly our ruler grasped the idea, and in January, 1863, sent forth a proclamation of freedom, declaring slaves forever free. From that hour Heaven’s benignant smiles came upon us, and our gallant armies moved steadily forward to the complete destruction of southern tyranny and the establishment of the authority of government. But now we have a greater work to perform, such as we are contemplating to-day. Equality, equality, is the word which sounds out from every humble lip, and those who make the laws and hold brief power must heed it or the state and nation will go back and lose the proud eminence it has gained in abolishing forever the institution of slavery.

Local News.

National Fast.—Services in this city will be held as follows: The Methodist, Baptist and South Cong. societies unite holding service in the Methodist church in the morning, sermon by Rev. J. L. Dudley. Services in the Episcopal church at the usual hour in the morning. Prayer meeting at the Lecture room in Broad Street in the morning.


Young Men’s Christian Association.—We rejoice to learn that one of these excellent societies is to be organized in this city. A meeting to consider the subject is to be held at the Lecture Room of the North Church in Broad st., on Thursday evening, June 1st at 7 o’clock. Ladies are admitted to membership in these Associations in many of the large cities, and the same arrangement will probably be adopted here. We hope the attendance will be such as to leave no doubt of the earnest practical interest of our citizens in this admirable method of organizing christian effort.


Insure.—Dr. G. L. Pratt of Waterbury was severely injured last week by being thrown from his carriage. He held a number one policy in the Traveller’s Insurance Co., of Hartford, and draws $25 per week, during his disability. O. Vincent Coffin is agent for this vicinity. Persons intending to travel can procure tickets at the office of Adam’s Express Co.


Accident.—An explosion of cartridges occurred on Thursday morning last, at the Sage Ammunition Works, in South Farms. Four boys were employed in a detached building in removing the balls from some condemned metallic cartridges, when one exploded, which exploded the rest. The inmates of the building escaped with severe burns.


The weather has not yet become settled. The past week has been a mixture of heat and cold with plenty of rain. Vegetation is coming forward slowly. The prospect of a heavy crop of grass is good, it being well advanced on the first crop.


A large number of laborers are at work on the line of the Western Pacific railroad, which is the connecting link of the California and Pacific railroad between Sacramento and San Francisco.


Over eight thousand steam engines are now employed in pumping oil in Pennsylvania, and Oil City, which four years ago contained one hundred inhabitants, now has a population of about ten thousand.


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From The Constitution, Wednesday, May 24, 1865 (volume 28, number 1430)

Trial of the Assassins.

The evidence taken before the military court, now in session at Washington, for the trial of the assassins is reported for the press. It conclusively shows that it was premeditated. It had been talked about and planned months before. The statement by Geo. N. Sanders that he was not acquainted with Booth, and had not seen to know him was destroyed by one of the witnesses who testified that he had been the two in conversation in Montreal, Canada. The testimony is strong on the complicity of the Richmond authorities, although conclusive evidence, said to be in the hands of the authorities, has not been given. The plan first proposed, was to capture the President and members of the cabinet and carry them to Richmond. This was abandoned and assassination agreed upon. The most determined and desperate of the characters on trial is acceded to Payne. His antecedents are not known. He is said to be villainous looking, tall and of huge proportions, neck bare with face smoothly shaven. Harrold appears like a harmless and easily led person, one to be made the dupe of designing persons. O’Laughlin is charged with intending the murder of Gen. Grant. It is stated that he resembles Booth, and bears the marks of dissipation. The evidence of the complicity of Atzerodt, who was to assassinate Andrew Johnson, of Samuel Arnold, Mrs. Mary Surratt, and her son John Surratt, is convincing. The part allotted to Dr. Mudd is being brought out, showing him to have knowledge of the whole affair. The plot is a fit sequel to the closing career of rebels and traitors.


Reliable information has been received that the rebel Gen. Forrest was killed at Parkville, Ala., on the 16th by four of his own men, to avenge the death of six of their comrades, ordered shot by Forrest, the day before.


A dispatch from Nashville says it was expected that Jeff. Davis would be sent through that city; but this being deemed injudicious the arch traitor was sent East. He arrived at Macon on Monday, and, with a strong guard, was sent to Augusta. From that point he will be sent to Savannah, where he will take vessel for Fortress Monroe. An officer of Johnston’s army, who has arrived at Nashville, says that Davis gave up nearly all his specie as payment for services of officers and men of his own escort.


The Review of the Army.—The grand review of our armies has been ordered to take place on Tuesday and Wednesday of this week at Washington. As the veterans march through the streets of that city, on this their last review for the war, they can look back with pride and satisfaction upon the record of their noble exploits during the past four years. Through every southern state they have borne in triumph our honored flag, and won an imperishable name in American history.

Local News.

At Home.–Col. F. E. Camp of the 29th colored U. S. regiment, arrived in this city last week on furlough. He has been commissioned by his regiment to procure instruments for a regimental band. He appears in good health, and is none the worse for having assisted in the pursuit and capture of Gen. Lee and the rebel army. We acknowledge, through him, the receipt of late Richmond papers.


Town and City.—The adj. town meeting on Saturday afternoon reconsidered the vote passed at a former meeting, appropriating $1,060 to defray expenses of petitioning the Legislature in favor of the N. Y. and Boston Railroad (Air Line.) The whole subject was postponed three weeks, to which time the special meeting was adj.; when it is hoped that a full attendance of the residents of the town may be had. At the city meeting in the evening, the laying out for public highways, Cherry street, Center street, and Bailey avenue, were ordered.


Fair.—The ladies of Zion’s A. M. E. Church of this city, will hold a fair and festival at McDonough Hall, on Wednesday afternoon and evening, the 24th inst. Proceeds to be applied for the benefit of the society.


A New Enterprise—Omnibus Line.—J. A. Turner, of the late firm of J. & J. A. Turner, in this city, and now of the “Swathel House,” in Durham, has engaged in an enterprise deserving the support of our merchants and citizens, being a daily omnibus line through the city. It is also an accommodation to the residence of the town of Durham and Cromwell, leaving the former place at 6-15, a. m., and returning at 6-15, p. m. It starts from Pameacha Bridge at 7-30, a. m., and arrives at the Railroad Depot upon the departure and arrival of each train, returning again to Pameacha Bridge. Twice a day, both morning and afternoon, it runs to Cromwell, stopping at the Post Office. For time table, see advt. The residents of these towns will find it decidedly a ‘public institution,’ and should give a liberal support. Commutation tickets will be furnished on liberal terms.


The Long Island Route.—The steamer Sunshine will commence running on the Long Island Route on Thursday of this week. The popular commander Capt. Bates will be found at his post, and as attentive as ever to the wants of the traveling public. The “Sunshine” is a new boat, in complete order, commodious and always “on time,” besides running on one of the most pleasant routes in New England.


Andrew Knowles, who shot J. C. Eggleston of Guilford, it is supposed passed through St. Albans, a few days since, on his way to Canada.


The River, owing to the late heavy rains, has been at high water mark, submerging all the low wharves, and suspending business operations general along the river.


Gardening.—The late rains have retarded the usual spring work in gardens. We hear complaints now and then from those who had hopes of enjoying an early dish of peas or nice potatoes, that nothing had as yet appeared above ground. We offer them our condolence, and can say that we are in the same carriage. But we can enjoy a good sight even if it is that of looking at a neighbor’s garden, and see vegetables of all kinds growing must luxuriantly, and to our disappointed friends, if they are of even temper, we would mention the garden of C. F. Collins, as one well worth admiring at this season of the year. It is neither a hot house or hot bed, but a well kept common garden, which exceeds in forwardness anything which we have yet seen.


For the Constitution.

A Visit to Washington.

Interview with President Johnson and General Grant—Impression produced by them—Booth’s capture—End of the Rebellion.

Friend Constitution: A trip to Washington is by no means a rare thing now-a-days nor to judge from appearances is it likely to be for some time to come, and we cannot therefore claim for ourselves anything of extraordinary merit from the fact that we have but just returned from a short sojourn in that city; nor would it probably interest your readers to hear for the forty-second time a rehearsal of “First Impressions of Washington, Beautiful City, etc., etc.,” but it might interest them to hear something about those men who are figuring so extensively in the history of our country, from the pen of one, whom unusual advantages perhaps, have to a certain extent qualified, to speak of. I will therefore as briefly as possible give you a short account of an interview it was my pleasure to enjoy with our chief Magistrate. The day immediately succeeding my arrival in the capital, I was asked if I would like to be introduced to President Johnson in company with a few ladies and gentlemen who were to have that honor. I eagerly accepted the invitation and at an early hour on Saturday morning, led by Thurlow Weed, and Capt. Percival Drayton, U. S. N., we left “Willards,” en route, for the residence of Mr. Hooper, the present abode of the President. The house is a very handsome light brown stone building, large and well built and surrounded entirely by a strong guard from the Veteran Reserve Corps. Ringing the bell we were immediately confronted by two soldiers, who, upon statement of our intention and the discovery of no alarming or suspicious appearances admitted us into the house where we were severally introduced to Hon. Preston King, the great friend of the President. We were by him ushered into a large parlor where we were informed the President would soon be present, he being at that time busy with a gentleman. After a short detention which gave us the chance to become mutually acquainted in our party, the doors were thrown open and Andrew Johnson quietly stepped into the room. He bowed courteously around and welcomed us, after which he was introduced to each in turn by Mr. Prince of Albany. The President spoke a few words as he shook hands, passing quietly on to the next. As he passed from one to the other he would cast his eyes down upon the floor raising them suddenly to your face as he confronted you.

In appearance he is of medium height, strongly-built, and with a large and well-developed head. His eyes are not very large, but sharp and piercing. He is very dignified in his manner, speaks in a low tone and seems to deeply feel the responsibilities of his position. His whole appearance is such as to inspire unqualified confidence and Abraham Lincoln leaves no unworthy successor in Andrew Johnson. Stepping into the next room at his invitation we saw on the table, a very handsome china locomotive and tender, which the President said was a coffee-pot presented to Jefferson Davis by Messrs. Mason and Slidell, and sold by him at auction, previous to his hasty flight from Richmond. It was given to President Johnson by the buyer. A music box is located within the tender, which plays while the coffee boils, which latter fact is announced by the blowing of a whistle located on the locomotive, when the music ceases. After spending about half an hour thus agreeably we took leave of the President, all well satisfied despite the croakings of northern rebels and copperheads, that Andrew Johnson is a firm, conscientious and honest man, and will prove too much of a man for them, we hope.

Returning to “Willards” after a short rest a portion of us started out again to visit that beautiful structure, the Capitol. Of the magnificence of that building one who has not seen it has no idea. It is really the handsomest building I have ever seen. I have visited the Tuilleries, Louvre, Fontainebleau and St. Germain in France; the Ducal and Grand Ducal Palaces of Germany; the Kings Palace in Brussells; the Emperor’s in Austria; and the Kings in Berlin, but of real noble grandeur and magnificence I had no idea until I visited the Capitol of the United States. Old England herself can boast of no finer structure and on its completion we may almost challenge the world to equal it. There is nothing gaudy about it, nor do gold and silver promiscuously scattered, shock the taste. The gardens are finely laid out and well taken care of.

On returning to the Hotel, I perceived a short, broad-shouldered, plain-looking, little man in civilian’s dress, standing in the center of a group of officers, smoking a cigar, and taking part in the conversation. This was Maj.-Gen. Phil. Sheridan, the gallant and dashing cavalry officer, and staff. Contrary to his pictures he has only a moustache and imperial. It was impossible to believe that the little man before me was one of that gallant trio, whose names are in every mouth and praises on every tongue. But he it was, and the conclusion was forced upon us that “truth is stranger than fiction.” The next day in walking around I passed by the residence of Secretaries Seward, Stanton and McCulloch. I also, in company with others visited as much as was possible of Ford’s Theatre, the scene of the tragedy of the 14th of April. All the above mentioned residences are strongly guarded both in front and rear. Secretary Seward is much better and rides out every day. He is hardly recognizable, however, and his face swollen as it is resembles a large pumpkin as much as anything. He talks quite freely, however, and suffers but little pain. His son is but very slowly improving and great fears are still entertained for his safety. No one is allowed to enter ‘Ford’s Theatre’ though we went all around it. I saw the small door at the back of the stage where Booth made his hasty exit, also the stable where he kept his horse and the place where his horse stood. A guard prevents anyone from approaching within a rod of the door.

On returning to the Hotel I was introduced to Capt. Dougherty, the leader of the small party that tracked out and captured Booth. He is a very handsome and intelligent young man, and gave me a very interesting account of the capture of Booth, even down to the minutest details. It was very interesting and may be worth communicating at another time. But to me the pleasantest feature of my visit to Washington was the interview enjoyed with General Grant, with which I will close this already lengthy communication. On Tuesday morning I was sitting in the parlor of the Hotel with two or three young ladies and Mr. Brady, the eminent photographer. Happening to glance at the door, I noticed a military looking man appear, and then turn away again, pretty soon he returned and took a step into the parlor when Mr. Brady, then for the first time perceiving him, jumped up exclaiming: “Why, Gen. Grant, how do you do?” “Why,” said the General, “are you here; I looked in a moment ago, and did not see anybody I knew.” The General walked into the parlor and after being introduced to us, gave a hearty shake of the hand and took his seat upon the sofa. Of course, we deemed ourselves the most lucky of mortals, in being admitted to the privilege of an interview with the capturer of armies, and the greatest General of the age. In appearance the General is far from looking the mighty man that he is. His pictures are for the most part very accurate. His forehead is large, and his eyes deep set, but his head inclines forward so much as to give him the appearance of stooping. He is broad-shouldered, and says he has gained ten pounds within the last six months. His appearance is prepossessing, but plain and unassuming. He speaks slowly and distinctly, and will suffer his eyes to wander around until the last few words when he looks straight at you. He is very pleasant and courteous, yet dignified. He talked very freely and seemed very willing to answer all questions, which fact, however, we must attribute to the presence of the ladies, as he is usually rather inclined to taciturnity. He said in the course of the conversation that his oldest boy had been in five battles and the siege of Vicksburgh, before he was fourteen. He spoke a great deal about his children, and is evidently an affectionate and indulgent father. He takes great pride in his horses, of which he has eight. Two of them, “Cincinnati” and “Egypt” he considers almost matchless.—He intends sending the former to N. Y., and said that he thought he would made a stir in the Central Park. The General said that he intended going to New York himself the next month. He said that he considered Jeff Davis’ chance of escape very slim indeed. He talked with us for about half an hour and then left. We were all very favorably impressed with him, and only regretted the shortness of time at his disposal. But it is on horseback that he is seen to best advantage, for he is a magnificent horseman.

While sitting in front of the Hotel, two fellows passed by who were pointed out as the Garrett boys, notorious in connection with Booth. They were on parole. In the patent office I noticed what I have never seen any mention made of before, viz, a patent by Abraham Lincoln, for a machine to raise boats over shallow water.

H. W. R.


1865 bus schedule

From The Constitution, Wednesday, May 17, 1865 (volume 28, number 1429)

War News.

A dispatch from Gen. Canby says that Dick Taylor surrendered on the 6th inst., with the forces under his command, on substantially the same terms as those accepted by Gen. Lee.

Says the Louisville Journal: “At almost every point along the river in Kentucky and Tennessee, and even in the interior towns, we learn that the rebels are coming in and taking the oath. They express themselves satisfied that the Confederacy is gone up, and are anxious to be considered as citizens of the United States.”

Gen. Thomas has issued an order to Gen. Rousseau to send a summons under a flag of truce to every body of armed men in his vicinity calling upon them to surrender, and if they refuse to treat them as outlaws.

Maj. Gen. Hancock has issued a general order, under date of March 8, announcing that all citizens employed in the Middle Military Division, who can be replaced by enlisted men without detriment to the interests of the service, will be discharged as soon as possible.

A dispatch from Washington says that Gen. Sherman is at present in Richmond. He rode at the head of the line of his troops on Wednesday, as the Fourteenth Army Corps passed through the streets of that city.

A dispatch from Des Moines, Iowa, says the guerrillas who robbed the passengers of the Great Western Stage Company have been captured, “and their bodies left in the woods.”


The arch traitor, who for many years has plotted treason against the best government on earth, has at last reached nearly the end of the rope. But a step more and it is accomplished. The news of his capture which came to us Sunday morning, was welcomed like the beautiful day itself. Davis the commander-in-chief of the late rebel army, the head and front of rebels and desperadoes, was captured in petticoats. What a picture for a comic publication. How pleasing the thought must be to his partizans in foreign countries. A dagger in one hand the other grasping his uncouth apparel, and his lips protesting against the “energy with which the government hunted down women and children.” It is refreshing to turn from such thoughts and bring to mind the words of our President, that “treason is a crime, and deserves the severest penalty.”


Anniversaries.—Last week was anniversary week in New York. The anti-slavery society which in former years attracted but little notice was in the ascendant. William Lloyd Garrison, the President, introduced resolutions for dissolving the society on the ground that the object for which it was formed was accomplished. The resolutions were rejected. Mr. Garrison thereupon tendered his resignation and dissolved all connection with it. Wendell Phillips was then chosen President. Speeches were made in favor of negro suffrage.


The Trial.—The military commission for the trial of the assassins commenced its session last week.

The Advancement of the Negro.

In the situation of the black man in this country a great change has been made during the last few years. The great social evil which formerly existed at the south was made the occasion for feuds and quarrels between the two sections. Evils real or imaginary were protested against. To such an extent was this warfare carried, at least on the part of the south, that they declared that the black man was made to be the slave of the white. Three things they boldly asserted: 1st, that what they did not know about the character of the black man was not worth knowing: 2d, that one southerner could whip three yankees; 3d, that they would call the roll of their slaves on Bunker Hill. The war which followed brought into existence a new order of things directly opposite to the pronunciations of the south. The proposition of the national government to arm the blacks was received by the south as the latest joke of the season. Make a good fighting soldier of a “n*****” when the mere sight of a whip handle would make his knees tremble and turn into a coward? The thing could not be done. They knew and their authority was good the world over. What they claimed as an impossibility, was accomplished, and the black men have shown before the cannon’s mouth that they can make as good soldiers as ever handled a gun stock. Thus much for assertion number one; the boastful character of the second has been brought low on many battle fields; the last, if ever fulfilled, will not be in our time. Thus the south has found, to its cost, that in some things they were greatly mistaken, and in nothing more than in the character of the negro. The war has brought out the character and abilities of the black race. It is now proposed to place the blacks of the south in a new position. Make them free men, or paid laborers. This plan, however, does not receive the favor of those who have heretofore asserted their knowledge of the ability of the race. In lieu of a better plan for conducting the plantations at the south, it is suggested that these croakers wait a little before they venture their opinion. The old system has been abolished, never to be restored. Good soldiers cannot be made slaves again. They have taken one important step in the right path, and it now remains with them to continue in the path now open to them.

Local News.

The Enrolment.—The Provost Marshal of this district has received an order from the War department to stop the work of taking the enrolment in this district. Consequently about forty agents engaged in the work have been discharged.


A meeting of the ex-officers of the 14th Reg’t, Conn. Volunteers, will be held at the Tremont House in New Haven on Saturday of this week, to take measures to welcome home the returning regiment and to organize an association of the officers.


City Matters.—The Common Council has instructed the Chief Engineer of the Fire Department to purchase two hose carriages for the use of the fire department.

The Common Council have also drawn up a petition and presented to the Legislature now in session, for a charter incorporating a company to bring pure water into the city. Estimates and surveys have been made, and it is thought that the cost will not exceed $125,000. It is thought that by uniting two or three streams in the north west part of the town, a sufficient amount of water can be procured.

An ordinance has been passed closing drinking saloons during each hour belonging to the Sabbath.


City and Town.—A special city meeting will be held on Saturday evening of this week at 8 o’clock, to consider the layout of public streets. An adj. town meeting will be held next Saturday afternoon at 2 o’clock. A special town meeting, to consider the expediency of issuing bonds to cover the floating debt of the town, will be held at 3 o’clock of the same day.


Business Change.—H. C. Ransom, the famous dry goods man, has disposed of his stock of Dry Goods in this city, to Mr. J. H. Bunce, for many years in his employ, and well known to the trading public of this vicinity. Mr. Bunce will continue the business at the old stand. He proposes to offer an unusual large assortment of goods in a week or two; meanwhile his present stock is being rushed off at remarkably low figures. Mr. Bunce is a gentleman of strict integrity, possessing good business qualities. Success attend him.


Approaching.—The warm sun reminds one of the hot days fast approaching. It also brings to mind the cool and refreshing luxuries, in the shape of ice cream, strawberries, soda water with any flavor desired, which are its accompanyments. One of the most quiet and pleasant places where the above luxuries may be found may be mentioned as No. 62 west Court street. Try it and see if we are mistaken.


Westward.—Mr. Benj. Keyes, of this city, and for nearly twenty years in the employ of W. & B. Douglas as engineer, left for the west on Monday morning.—His fellow workmen presented him with a handsome testimonial on the morning of his departure.


Commencement.—The appointments for commencement at the Wesleyan University, are as follows: valedictory, Wm. N. Rice, Springfield; salutatory, George L. Westgate, Fall River; philosophical oration, James Mudge, South Harwich; ancient classical oration, Wilbur O. Atwater, Vergennes, Vt.; metaphysical oration, W. H. H. Phillips, Loughboro, C. W.; modern classical orations, J. N. Perkins, Hartford, Vt., and C. W. Wilder, Lowell, Ms.


Murder in Guilford.—Mr. E. C. Eggleston, a store keeper in the town of Guilford, was shot on Monday evening, while standing in his store door, by a young man named Andrew Knowles. There had been some difficulty between them by Eggleston refusing to allow Knowles to pay attention to his sister. After committing the deed, Knowles made his escape going towards Saybrook. Latest accounts say that Eggleston is improving and will probably recover. Knowles is still at large. The affair has caused great excitement in the town of Guilford.


Jeff. Davis.—A little over four years ago, says the Lewiston Journal, Jeff. Davis took leave of the United States Senate in a most arrogant, insolent and defiant speech, in which he informed the North that if they opposed secession with war, their rich fields and populous cities would become the prey of the Confederate soldiers. Sunday evening week, as he sneaked out of his capital city, the most contemptible of fugitives, his mind must have recurred to this old threat with feelings of peculiar bitterness and humiliation.


Ice cream at Putnam's!


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From The Constitution, Wednesday, May 10, 1865 (volume 28, number 1428)

War News.

An order from Gen. Halleck, issued at Richmond, allows all persons, without regard to rank or employment, in the civil or military service of the late rebel government, to take the amnesty oath, and will receive the corresponding certificate. Those excluded from the benefit of such oath can make application for pardon and restoration to civil rights, which applications will be received and forwarded to proper channels for the action of the President of the United States.—The fact that such persons have voluntarily come forward and taken the oath of allegiance will be evidence of their intention to resume the status of loyal citizens, and constitutes a claim for Executive clemency. Gen. Meade had arrived in Richmond. The van of the Army of the Potomac reached Manchester on the 3d, from City Point, en route for Washington. The heavy equipments and paraphernalia go by water.

It was thought that both Bragg and Hampton accompanied Jeff. Davis for parts unknown, the latter in command of the escort.

The Richmond Whig, of the 4th, states that Robert Ould, late rebel Commissioner of Exchange, and Wm. H. Hatch, his assistant and several other attaches of the Bureau, had been arrested on an order from Washington upon a charge connected with the administration of affairs devolving upon them.

Two of our paroled prisoners have arrived at Raleigh, bring news that Jeff. Davis was at Charlotte, N. C., on the 25th of April but that he left on that day bound for the West. He had a train of twenty wagons, escorted by 3,000 cavalry under Gen. Echols and Basil Duke. These men were mostly of Morgan’s old command, and were committing all sorts of outrages upon the people. Davis had the impudence to make a speech to the people, in which he assured them that he would soon be again on the field with an army larger than ever before.

Dispatches from Memphis confirm the report of the surrender of Jeff. Thompson. He surrendered his entire force to Commander Mitchell, of the United States service, with whom he has been in negotiation for some time. The terms are understood to be the same as were accorded to Gens. Lee and Johnston.

Gen. Meredith, commanding Western Kentucky, has summoned all bands of armed men acting in open hostility against the government, to surrender before May 20, on terms granted to Lee, or be treated as outlaws.


An order has been issued by Gen. Augur, prohibiting the disinterment of deceased soldiers in the department of Washington between May 1st, and October 1st.


The Rebel Loan in England.—The cotton loan in England has tended in a great measure to uphold the cause of the South in foreign countries, and cause attention and respect to be paid to southern emissaries. The only thing, however, which gave security to the loans, was the existence of Lee’s army. Upon the receipt of the news in England of its surrender we can imagine the flutter and consternation which its holders will be thrown into. It is a pity that there was not more of it, it being limited to fifteen millions. The biter has once again been bitten, and no sympathy will be extended this side of the Atlantic. If they would go in bad company, let them suffer the consequences.


President Lincoln’s remains were deposited in their last resting place at Springfield, Ill., on Thursday, with the most solemn ceremonies. A vast concourse of people were present. Bishop Simpeon delivered the funeral oration.


By The President of the United States of America.

A Proclamation.

Whereas, it appears from evidence in the bureau of military justice, that the atrocious murder of the late President, Abraham Lincoln, and the attempted assassination of Hon. W. H. Seward, Secretary of State, were incited, concerted and procured by and between Jefferson Davis, late of Richmond, Va., and Jacob Thompson, Clement C. Clay, Beverly Tucker, George N. Sanders, W. C. Cleary, and other rebels and traitors against the government of the United States, harbored in Canada.

Now, therefore, to the end that justice may be done, I, Andrew Johnson, President of the United States, do offer and promise for the arrest of said persons, or either of them within the limits of the United States, so that they can be brought to trial, the following rewards: One hundred thousand dollars for the arrest of Jefferson Davis, twenty-five thousand dollars for the arrest of Jacob Thompson, late of Mississippi; twenty-five thousand dollars for the arrest of George N. Sanders; twenty-five thousand dollars for the arrest of Beverly Tucker; and ten thousand dollars for the arrest of William C. Cleary, late clerk of Clement C. Clay.

The Provost Marshal General of the United States is directed to cause a description of said persons, with notice of the above rewards to be published.

In testimony whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed. Done at the city of Washington, the second day of May, in the year of our Lord, 1865, and of independence of the United States of America the eighty-ninth. (Signed) ANDREW JOHNSON.

By the President:

W. Hunter, Acting Secretary of State.


Taking the Bull By the Horns.—The life of Booth, the assassin, has been taken. Mallory, the secretary of the rebel navy, has given himself up. The notorious Kirby Smith has surrendered his army, and upon a few of the remaining leaders of the rebellion, a price is set which will place them in our hands, or make them fugitives and outlaws in the land.


Secretary Seward and his son Frederick are recovering slowly from their wounds. The Secretary took his usual ride on Friday. A successful surgical operation was performed on his jaw the same day, in presence of several eminent surgeons.


The Message

Of Gov. Buckingham, its important parts, will be found on the first page. It is an able document. State matters are treated in a practical manner. The funded debt of the State is represented at $3,000,000, unfunded $2,523,113.47. A new issue of State Bonds is recommended and no diminution of State Taxes. The school fund exceeds $2,000,000, and the condition of the schools is satisfactory. The State Reform School is self-supporting; the number of boys now there is 257. The expenses of the State Prison were $5,770 above its earnings. There have been in the State the past year 9,734 births, 9,109 deaths and 4,107 marriages. The railroad companies have been prosperous, the net earnings having increased 25 per cent. Twenty-three banks have changed to the national system; forty-nine still remain under the State laws. Deposits in savings banks have increased $2,160,066.27. The constitutional amendment is recommended; also an amendment allowing soldiers to vote. Of the quotas furnished, this State with Iowa, were the only loyal states specially exempted from the operations of the last draft. The state has been credited by the war department with 54,448 men, mustered in for a total service of 132,715 years. The assassination of President Lincoln, state rights, and other matters of public interest are appropriately discussed.

Local News.

Alert Club.—The regular meetings of the “Club” will be discontinued until further notice. The usual quarterly collections will be made in June.


Launched at Essex, on the 6th inst., from the yard of David Mack, Esq., a superior built schooner of 250 tons burthen, called the “Gen. Sheridan,” owned by parties in this place and Portland, and commanded by Capt. Samuel J. Buell of this city.

The schr. Wm. Boardman, of Hartford, has been chartered and has sailed with a cargo for Richmond.


Fruit.—Pineapples and bananas, ripe and delicious, can be found at the store of C. E. Putnam.


New Music.—“Funeral March, to the memory of Abraham Lincoln the Martyr President of the United States,” is the title of a new piece by Mrs. E. A. Parkhurst, just issued from the establishment of Horace Waters, 481 Broadway, N. Y.; also from the same establishment. “Lullaby,” by Wm. F. Muller, and a serio-comic ballad, entitled, “Famous Oil Firms.”

Reducing Expenses.

The expenses of the government have at last reached high water mark. For four years the debtor side of the account has increased, until it has reached figures which in former years would appal us. It was “live or die,” and we shrank from nothing which would aid in accomplishing our object. But the happy hour when retrenchment is the order of the day, has come, and it is hoped, the last of the rebellion. Hereafter, for numberless years, the demand for young men to increase our armies will not be made. Their energies will now be turned to the arts of industry. Peace shall again pervade the land. It has been feared that should we defeat the armies in the field, we should be engaged for years in a guerilla warfare. But there are hopes that it will not be so. The chief of guerillas, Mosby, has voluntarily broken up his band, and taken flight with Jeff. Davis. Our brave boys are already on the homeward march, and six hundred thousand blank discharges have been ordered to be printed by the war department. Many of the barracks in the different loyal states have been torn down, and the soil put under the plow and harrow. In the navy department, the word for retrenchment has been passed. Contracts have been withdrawn, and vessels are coming into our harbors to be discharged from the service. Our expenses during the past few months have been nearly three millions a day. They will be reduced at once more than a third. Should the rebel leaders leave the country, and Texas remain quiet, a much larger reduction of the military force than is now intended will be made. We have been engaged in a terrible war, raised large armies and been successful. We shall now prove to those who have asserted that we were drifting to a military despotism, that we can disband our armies and resume the peaceful vocations of life. Thus we move on. Powerful in peace, terrible in war.


The Hartford Press states that Henry Hegeman, the pedestrian, who agreed to walk from Boston to Washington, whenever Gen. Lee surrendered, was in that city on Saturday. He left Boston on Monday, at 11 o’clock, and travels at the rate of twenty-five miles per day. He says that he is warmly received at some places. He is a small German, dresses in black, with a linen duster, carries a haversack and a small American flag which was presented him in Boston.


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From The Constitution, Wednesday, May 3, 1865 (volume 28, number 1427)

War News.

Gen. Halleck, under date April 26, writes that Gens. Meade, Sheridan and Wright are acting under orders to pay no regard to any truce or orders of Gen. Sherman respecting hostilities, on the ground that Sherman’s agreement could bind his own command only and no other. They are directed to push forward regardless of orders from any one except Gen. Grant and cut off Johnston’s retreat.

Beauregard has telegraphed to Danville that a new arrangement has been made with General Sherman, and that the advance of the Sixth Corps was to be suspended until further orders. I have telegraphed back to obey no orders of Sherman’s, but to push forward as rapidly as possible.

Bankers here have information to-day, that Jeff. Davis’ specie is moving south from Goldsboro, in wagons, as fast as possible. I suggest that orders be telegraphed through Gen. Thomas that Gen. Wilson obey no orders from Gen. Sherman, and notifying him and Canby, and all commanders on the Mississippi to take measures to intercept the rebel chiefs and their plunder. The specie taken with them is estimated here at from six to thirteen million dollars.

The steamer from Morehead City, brings advices from Newburn that Grant effectively put an end to the armistice. It is reported in Newbern that Grant had given Johnston to six, yesterday morning, to surrender his army, conditions unknown. Grant announcing that after that hour hostilities would be at once resumed. Johnston is said to have replied that if Davis and the leading general officers of the confederacy were pardoned and permitted to leave the country free and unmolested, he would be authorized to accept the terms proposed.

A dispatch from Gen. Grant dated Raleigh, 10 P. M., April 26, states that Johnston surrendered the forces in his command, embracing all from here to Chattachoochie, to Gen. Sherman, on the basis agreed upon between Lee and Grant for the army of Northern Virginia.

The rebel ram Webb, which escaped from Red River on the 22d and rushed down the Mississippi at high speed, apparent on a raid against our shipping in that river, has gone the way of nearly all such vessels. She passed New Orleans, hoisted the rebel flag, and in a short time afterward her machinery got out of order, and she was at once deserted and blown up. Some of her crew got back to New Orleans.

The Louisville Journal has information that the rebel Gen. Gideon J. Pillow has requested to be allowed to return to his home in Tennessee under the amnesty oath and giving bonds.

Nine hundred rebels at Cumberland Gap surrendered on Friday, and were paroled.


A Steamer Blown Up.—The steamer Sultana from New Orleans the evening of the 21st arrived at Vicksburg with boilers leaking badly. She remained thirty hours repairing and took on board 1996 federal soldiers, and 35 officers, lately released from Cahawba and Andersonville prisons. She arrived at Memphis Thursday evening, and after coaling proceeded until about 2 A. M. Friday, when she blew up and immediately took fire and burned to the water’s edge. Of 2106 souls on board, not more than 700 will be recovered. Five hundred were rescued and are now in hospital. Two or three hundred uninjured are at the Soldiers’ House at Cairo. Capt. Mason, of the Sultana, is supposed to be lost. At 4 o’clock Friday morning the river in front of Memphis was covered with soldiers struggling for life, many of them badly scalded.—Boats immediately went to the rescue and are still engaged in picking them up. Gen. Washburne immediately organized a board of officers to investigate the affair.


This afternoon, April 27th, Chas. Ingersoll, brother of Edward Ingersoll, and a notorious sympathizer with the rebellion went to Spring Garden Hall, Philadelphia, for the purpose of giving bail for his brother. On descending from his carriage he was set upon by the populace and badly beaten. He took refuge in the hall and was subsequently conveyed home. Several prominent secessionists proposed to visit the hall this afternoon to consult with Ingersoll, but they were warned not to do so and desisted. The excitement on the subject runs high.

Booth, The Assassin.

The detachment of the 16th New York cavalry obtained the first news of Booth at Port Royal, Tuesday evening, from an old man who stated that four men in company with a rebel captain, had crossed the Rappahannock a short time previous, going in the direction of Bowling Green, and he added that the captain would probably be found in that place, as he was courting a lady there.—Pushing on to Bowling Green, the captain was found at a hotel and taken in custody.—From him it was ascertained that Booth and Harrold were at the house of John and William Garrett, three miles back toward Port Royal, and about a quarter of a mile from the road passed over by the cavalry. In the meantime it appears that Booth and Harrold applied Garrett for horses to ride to Louisia Court House, but the latter fearing the horses would not be returned, refused to hire them notwithstanding large sums were offered.—These circumstances, together with the recriminations of Booth and Harrold each charging the other with the responsibility of their difficulties, had aroused the suspicions of the Garrett brothers, who urged Booth and Harrold to leave lest they (Garretts) should get into trouble with our cavalry. This Booth refused to do without a horse, and the men retired to a barn, the door of which, after they entered, Garrett locked and remained himself on guard in a neighboring corncrib, as he alleges, to prevent the horses being taken and ridden off in the night by Booth and Harrold.

Upon the approach of our cavalry from Bowling Green, about three o’clock Wednesday morning, the Garretts came out of the corn crib to meet them, and in answer to their inquiries, directed them to the barn.—Some further particulars are here given, not varying from what has already been stated. After the barn had been burning three-quarters of an hour, and when the roof was about falling, Booth, who had been standing with a revolver in one hand and a carbine resting on the floor, made a demonstration as if to break through the guard and escape. To prevent this, Serg. Corbett fired, intending to hit Booth in the shoulder, so as to cripple him. The ball, however, struck a little too high, and entered the neck, resulting fatally.

Booth wore, besides his suit of grey, an ordinary cloth cap, heavy high topped cavalry boot on his right foot, with the top turned down, and a government shoe on his left foot. No clue could be obtained of the other two men. Taking the two Garretts into custody, the command immediately set out for Washington, after releasing the captain. Serg. Corbett was baptized in Boston about seven years ago, at which time he assumed the name of Boston Corbett. To-day he was greatly lionized, and on the street was repeatedly surrounded by citizens. The two Garretts are dressed in rebel grey, having belonged to Lee’s army and just returned home on parole. They profess to have been entirely ignorant of the character of Booth and Harrold and manifest great uneasiness concerning their connection with the affair.

Booth and Harrold narrowly escaped capture on this side of the Potomac. Marshal Murray and a posse of New York detectives, tracked them to within a short distance of Swan Point, but the marshal being unacquainted with the country, and without a guide, during the night took the wrong road, and before he could regain the trail, Booth and Harrold succeeded in crossing the river to Virginia. The report that Booth attempted to shoot himself while in the barn, is incorrect. He, however, in his parley with his besiegers, indicated that he would not be taken alive. His manner throughout was that of hardened desperation, knowing his doom to be sealed, and preferring to meet it there in that shape, to the more ignominious death awaiting him if captured. He appeared to pay little attention to the fire raging about him, until the roof fell in, when he made a movement indicating a purpose to make a desperate attempt to cut his way out. The pistol used by Corbett was a regular large sized cavalry pistol. He was offered $1000 this morning for the pistol with its five undischarged loads.

This afternoon Surgeon-General Barnes, with an assistant, held an autopsy on the body of Booth. It now appears that Booth and Harrold had on clothes which were originally of some other color than confederate grey, but being faded and dirty, presented that appearance.


The Body of Booth.—On the 27th of April, the secretary of war, committed to Col. L. C. Baker, of the secret service, the stark corpse of J. Wilkes Booth. On the same night, a small row boat received the carcass of the murderer; two men were in it; they carried the body off into the darkness, and out of that darkness it will never return. The secret service never fulfilled its volition more secretively.


Junius Brutus Booth, an elder brother of J. Wilkes the assassin, was arrested at Philadelphia, on the morning of the 26th, taken to Washington and placed in the old capital prison. His letter to J. Wilkes about the “oil business,” has led to the suspicion that he knew that Wilkes intended to assassinate the president, and hence his arrest.

Local News.

In our article last week, on the obsequies of President Lincoln, in mentioning the names of those who draped their residences or places of business, we should have added that of Wm. A. Hedge, who had his residence and store on Main street most appropriately draped; likewise the store of F. Brewer. We will also mention that the residence of M. H. Griffin, Esq., on Prospect Hill, in the northwest part of the city, was heavily draped. Mr. Griffin was at considerable expense in procuring material from abroad, and like thousands of his countrymen, showed in a becoming manner, his respect to the memory of our late chief magistrate. We stated at the time that the list of names was incomplete. Most of the residences of the town and city paid proper respect to the departed.


New Train.—An afternoon train has commenced running between this city and Berlin depot. This will be quite an accommodation to those, who, having transacted their business by noon, in either New Haven or Hartford, wish to arrive in this city before dark. The train leaves at 3.20 p. m., returning to this city a few minutes before 5 p. m.


Fire.—The large wooden building, foot of Green st., known as the “Old Mill” or “Tanney place” was destroyed by fire Monday afternoon. The building has not been used for many years. The boys in the neighborhood have been in the habit of gathering there, and they were to have a “show” on the premises that afternoon. It was without doubt more of a show and had more spectators, than they calculated for. The property belonged to the estate of the late Chas. R. Alsop. No insurance.


Anecdote of Sherman.—While Senator Sherman was here on a visit, about a week ago, he was presented by Frank Blair with a very fine horse, captured during the South Carolina campaign. He was told that he must get a pass from his brother, the general, before he could ship the animal to the North, but thought this would be a very small matter. So he went to “Cump’s” headquarters to tell him of his luck and get the necessary document. “It’s a splendid horse, Cump,” said the honorable Senator, “and if you’ll just sign a permit I’ll take him up in the boat with me.”

Cump replied, adjusting his shirt-collar with both hands, “I’m very glad he’s a good horse. We are very much in need of good horses, for the army. I have some orderlies around headquarters that are badly mounted.”

The grave and reverend senator was taken aback by this, and again reminded the general that the horse had been presented to him, and was not government property.

“Can’t let you have him, John. All the horses here belong to Uncle Sam. Individual titles ain’t worth a cent,” said Cump, and so the senator was cheated out of his present.

Let brotherly love continue.—Correspondence Cincinnati Commercial.


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From The Constitution, Wednesday, April 26, 1865 (volume 28, number 1426)

War News.

The rumors which have been circulating for some days about negotiations between Sherman and Johnston have at length taken definite shape. A courier from Gen. Sherman arrived at Washington last Friday, with the intelligence that that General had assumed the responsibility of arranging terms of peace with Gen. Johnston, and had agreed upon a temporary suspension of hostilities. At a Cabinet meeting held Friday night, the action of Gen. Sherman was disapproved by the President, by the Secretary of War, by Gen. Grant, and by every member of the Cabinet, and he was ordered to resume hostilities immediately. Lieut.-Gen. Grant left immediately, by a special steamer, to take supervision in person. A dispatch from Fortress Monroe announces his arrival at that place on Saturday. It is to be apprehended that these operations have given Jeff. Davis time to make good his escape, with the plunder of the Richmond banks.

Maj.-Gen. Canby reports that there were over 150 pieces of artillery found in the works around Mobile, with large quantities of ammunition and War supplies. The prisoners taken number about 1,000, and the cotton secured is about 3,000 bales.

All of Mosby’s gang have surrendered except himself; he has fled, and some of his late soldiers are in search of him, prompted by the offer, by Gen. Hancock, of $2,000 reward for the great guerrilla.

The Funeral Ceremonies on Wednesday.

From the information received from all parts of the country, it is safe to say nothing that has occurred since the organization of the government, has so moved the hearts of all the people, as the death of President Lincoln. The day fixed upon for the funeral ceremonies was universally observed, and in no part of the land with more apparent sincerity and unanimity than in Middletown—be it said to the honor of the heads and hearts of all our citizens. On Wednesday morning the whole city appeared in the habiliments of woe, and we are not of those who insist that any displayed, through fear of public sentiment, the outward symbols of sorrow which had not touched their hearts. It is one of those mighty afflictions in the presence of which prejudice, bigotry, partizan malignity and sectarian hate are awed into silence, and the soul, assuming its true dignity, is moved by those kindly sentiments and feelings which tell of the real nobility of human nature.

The day was one of the fairest that the season brings. At 10 a. m., the stores and other places throughout the city were closed; the church bells tolled from 11 to 12. One hundred minute guns were fired by the Douglas and Alsop Batteries commencing at 12 m. One of the largest meetings we have ever attended in this city, was held at the North Cong. Church, beginning at noon and lasting three hours. The house was crowded in every part, and hundreds went away unable even to get within sight of the exercises. The order of exercise was as follows:

Voluntary on Organ, and Singing.—Solo and Chorus, “Almighty Lord, before thy throne.”

Invocation and Reading of the Scriptures, Rev. Jeremiah Taylor.

Reading of Hymn—Rev. John Pegg.—“Why do ye mourn.”

Prayer—Rev. J. H. Gilbert.

Music—Solo and Quartette.—“Bow down thine ear.”

Address—Rev. Joseph Cummings, D. D.

Address—Rev. J. E. Bruce.

Music—Solo and Quartette.—“Rest, Spirit, rest.”

Address—Prof. F. H. Newhall.

Address—Rev. J. L. Dudley.

Hymn.—“God moves in a mysterious way.”


His Honor Mayor Warner, in opening the exercises, said:

The event which calls us together to-day is more momentous than any since the formation of our government, or any in the progress in the last decade of centuries. The personal embodiment of our nationality; of its power, sovereignty and dignity, the chief executive of the will of this people; the constitutional guardian of their rights, liberties and destinies; and as such the living symbol of constitutional form of governments, of human progress, of social and political equality; of civil and religious liberty, and of the high hopes of struggling humanity throughout the world, in the discharge and exercise of these sublime and almost divine functions and characteristics is struck down and at this hour lies straightened for the grave.

We have come to contemplate our dead President in the light, and through the gory shades of his tragic martyrdom,–we are gathered to contemplate those elements of his character which in their purity, simplicity and greatness have already silenced the voice of partizan malignity and hate; which has palsied the tongue of his defamers, and which have alike defied the scarcely less malignant and deadly touch of the assassin’s bullet; elements of character which defy any vicissitudes of time or eternity—which to-day can look Jehovah face to face and live, and which for all coming time, will command and receive the benediction of his countrymen and all future generations of men.

We are here under the shadows of a great affliction whilst the heart of the nation throbs its unutterable anguish at the tomb of its twice chosen chieftain; and apprehension, doubt and despondency seem to shut out and encurtain the future. Here, under the sanctions of our religion, around the altar and before the God of our fathers, we seem to see their martyrdoms walking in the gloom of their conflict; and they point to us the cheering, God-trusting motto which they inscribed upon the banners and which still beams upon us. We are here for invocation to that God to again place His bow of promise and peace in our political skies, and to indicate to this people the paths they can safely tread.

It is not my purpose to point out the moral of this calamity, and my poor common words would be mockery should I attempt to give utterance to the nation’s grief. But I cannot and will not forego the reflection,–almost a religious one—which steals over me and which seems also to have possessed the mind of our people, that the clotted shroud of this our dead, yet more than a living Cæsar, will be more powerful in impressing his virtues, his spotless example of political integrity upon the nation’s mind, more grand in its operations and effect in human events, more significant in the cause of liberty and justice, more weighty in the scale of human destiny, and more potent in moving the car of human progress, than he could have been had he moved in the sphere and accomplished the work which the partiality and choice of our people had assigned him to do.

Rev. Jeremiah Taylor, read numerous selections of Scripture. Mr. Pegg and Mr. Gilbert being absent, the hymn was read by Prof. Newhall and a lengthy and earnest prayer was offered by Rev. J. Taylor.

A Solo and Quartette was then given by a choir consisting of Miss Condon, Miss Ingham, Mrs. P. M. Wright, Mrs. Dr. Baker, Prof. Harrington, Messrs. J. N. Camp, Charles Stearns, and M. C. Elliott, under the direction of M. B. Copeland, Esq., who presided at the organ.

Rev. Dr. Cummings spoke with evident emotion. He referred in a touching manner to the sufferings of our soldiers in Southern prisons, and at the close of his remarks there were few dry eyes in all the vast audience. Dr. Cummings is always heard with pleasure by our citizens, but never have we seen his audience more interested than on this occasion.

Rev. Mr. Bruce spoke of the assassin, whose name, he said, is Slavery. He gave a number of facts and arguments to prove the correctness of the statement.

The address of Prof. Newhall was in every sense an excellent one. In closing he called upon all to swear by the Eternal God that no traitor shall press the soil or breathe the air of this land of Liberty—the home of Abraham Lincoln. The words were so well spoken and the sentiment was so acceptable that the audience, almost involuntarily loudly applauded.

Rev. Mr. Dudley said he had thought that the Rebellion had never done anything worthy of itself; and he had often wondered what dark and damnable thing would yet be disclosed. He wondered no longer—the deed was done. Then there was joy in Hell, and in some hearts not yet there. He spoke for nearly half an hour and the address was characterized by great earnestness and force,–at times by great beauty of thought and expression. The closing hymn was sung by the Choir and the benediction pronounced by Dr. Cummings.

The buildings throughout the city were with few exceptions, draped in mourning. Among which we will mention the Custom House and Post Office, which was heavily decorated, a full-length portrait of the late President being displayed in the porch; the Middletown and the First National Bank; the buildings of the fire companies with their flags at half mast; the store and windows of S. Stearns & Son, G. N. Ward, Wm. H. Ford, J. B. Southmayd, Chas. W. Hills, Foster & Vinal, H. C. Ransom, J. Bacon, N. V. Fagan, the rooms of the “Eurodelphians,” Bradley & Treadwell, Levy & Mooney, F. Brewer, J. S. Fairchild, J. Dessauer, H. D. Hall, Geo. Prior, J. D. Neale, E. Rockwell, Strauss & Schwartz, Benham and Boardman, H. Woodward, Miss Spaulding, E. Ackley, Mrs. Brooks, Misses Greenfield, F. D. Marvin, A. R. Parshley, Wm. Southmayd & Son, A. Kelsey, Adams Express and Telegraph offices. Among the residences were those of Mrs. J. K. F. Mansfield, Benj. Douglas, Dr. J. Ellis Blake, Mrs. Dyson, Miss Alsop, D. H. Chase, E. H. Roberts, Curtiss Bacon, Mrs. Woodward, Rev. M. Smith, J. W. Baldwin, D. Glover, Edwin Stearns, Wm. S. Camp, Misses Robertson, Mrs. Tobey, C. C. Hubbard, E. Loveland, H. Rutty, H. Boardman, S. G. Hurlburt, C. F. Collins, Beach, C. A. Boardman, N. Smith, J. S. Bailey, H. Cooley, J. W. Hayes, C. E. Putnam, H. Stancliff, A. Putnam, Miss M. Payne, A. Newton, J. G. Baldwin, Wm. J. Trench, J. W. Douglas, H. Ward, E. & F. Chaffee, M. Culver, C. C. Tyler, Mrs. Tompkins, Elijah Hubbard, D. J. Neale, J. Danforth, Mrs. M. Bradley, W. W. Wilcox, F. Comstock, Prof. Huber, E. Penfield, J. H. Sumner, Wm. Woodward, Dr. Gilman, H. G. Hubbard, J. H. Watkinson, A. B. Calef, G. M. Smith and B. C. Bacon. The flag of the Russell Manf’g Co., was trimmed in black and displayed at half mast. Several private dwellings in South Farms were appropriately draped including the store of Messrs. G. & J. Hubbard.


Wes students' tribute to Lincoln 1865


The Granite State was crowded with passengers on Monday, anxious to attend the funeral ceremonies of the President in New York. The body arrived there Monday afternoon.


Returned From the War.—George Loveland, eldest son of Elijah Loveland, Esq., of this city, returned to his home in this city last week, with an honorable discharge from three years service, in company A. 1st Conn. Heavy Artillery. He enlisted with Joseph Tobey, whose death we recorded a few months ago, a short time after the regiment had been in the field, and has remained faithful to his duty, without as much as a furlough, until his time of service expired. We acknowledge the receipt of a late Richmond paper.


Gov. Buckingham has issued a proclamation, withdrawing the State bounty of $300 to volunteer, or any person who may be mustered in the service of the United States, after the 17th inst.


A. S. Hotchkiss, (formerly of this city,) local editor of the Courant, was elected last week, clerk of the Board of Common Council, in Hartford. Good for Albert.


Editor of the Constitution:

Sir: I notice in your last paper that Samuel Birdsey, who once lived here, but now a traitor and rebel soldier, had returned (having lost his property south,) to receive and enjoy an ample property here, which his friend and agent had carefully managed for him, while engaged with his two substitutes in a warfare against the government. This fellow, after the battle of Bull Run, came here to look after his property, boasted of the masses of the south, sneeringly alluding to our defeat. Finding all safe, and leaving his property with his friend, he again started for his post in the confederate army, to assist in his cherished object of destroying the government. The war now being about closed, having done all he could to destroy our country, losing every penny south, returns to his native place to receive, from his faithful friend and agent, the property committed to his trust. The question seems to arrive, shall this rebel and avowed enemy be allowed to remain in this community, an eye-sore to every loyal soul, and living curse among us! Very tender and kind-hearted, indeed to their enemies, are the citizens of Middletown, if they allow it.



Messrs. Newtons: I am sorry to trouble you again, and should not, had not the Sentinel man (!) repeated his falsehood respecting repairs on the Turnpike. His motto probably is, “That a lie well stuck to is as good as the Truth.” In answer to my last communication he says, “That he certainly saw them [that is the City repairers and teams] at work at the point named.”

Now this is a repetition of his barefaced, unmitigated falsehood! and he knows it to be such. If he wishes light on the subject let him go to the archives of the Town; he will find there a written contract between the Town of Middletown and the Turnpike Company, made soon after it was chartered, conditioned that the Town shall keep the Turnpike in repair from where the Catholic Church now stands to Sumner’s Creek, for the consideration of Twenty five dollars per annum, and that from that time to the present, the Turnpike Co., have yearly paid the amount into the Town Treasury. We repeat, that the city have never, since the contract was made, worked at the point where the sharp vision of the Sentinel blunderhead says he saw them. I do not propose to notice any more of his malicious slanders. If it is any enjoyment to him let him go on, it hurts no one.



1865 peacetime


1865 ad - peacetime low prices!

From The Constitution, Wednesday, April 19, 1865 (volume 28, number 1425)


“He stood upon an eminence and glory covered him.”

The American nation to-day is bowed down with a great sorrow. Millions of sad hearts lift up their cry of mourning to Heaven. It is but a few days since that great joy of glad tidings lit up every hearth-stone in the land, every roof tree was hung with the garlands of rejoicing, and heartfelt thanksgiving smiled at every board. These were gala days, for the dawning of the great era of peace and national grandeur, the compact sealed with patriot blood and written with the sword of justice, had come. But of a sudden like a thunder cloud in a bright day came a great bereavement to the people. Their joy was turned to sadness. Every heart in the city, town, hamlet and highway of this broad land was stricken with sadness as if a father had been taken from every household. Abraham Lincoln is dead. The great emancipator, and thus the most notable name that history will have the honor of writing for the nineteenth century, he who with one trenchant blow struck down the evil that the ages had contended with, Abraham Lincoln is dead. Dead by the cowardly hand of assassination. Why or wherefore we do not know – the great sad fact of these days for all the world is, though his good works still live and are invulnerable to the bullet and dagger of the murderer, he is dead—the saddest words that have been spoken to the American people since the birth of the republic. Stricken down in his and the nation’s prime. The well earned glory of this great internecine struggle had just begun to gather around this beloved leader and his people, after struggling through four dark years of wilderness just as the light had begun to break, like Moses of old, he was fated to die with a far off glimpse of the promised land. We can draw no parallel for this great and good man’s character in the whole; it is its own parallel; it stands out before the centuries unique, incomparable. It would be a work of superrogation to recapitulate the events that have transpired during the Executive career of our beloved President. They are familiar in all of their prominent points as household words to every loyal man and woman, and history will take care of the details. Already a monument has grown up in the hearts of the people in memoriam of this wise and good man that all coming generations will be glad and proud to add to in humble romance. History furnishes us no ruler that ever had such a deep abiding hold upon the hearts and confidence of a nation. He was hedged about by no kingly divinity born of superstition and royal heritage; but his fascinating power over this mighty and incongruous people consisted of the same elements of character, that distinguished Washington; his incorruptible integrity, his wonderful honesty, his unfaltering patience, his large hearted leniency and total lack of vindictiveness. And that too, in a time, every day of which developed events, startling and potent, unparalleled in the worlds past, unthought of by philosophers, undreamed of by reformers. Surrounded by ambitious advisers, he was deaf to temptation, goaded by hungry place seekers, he was unflinching in his settled policy. The scepter he swayed was not made of the stern material of haughty magistracy, but was simply the strong arm of a great people who loved him and confided in him. He was a patriot of the present type, when to be a patriot was a dangerous thing; his unalterable policy was simple, grand and enduring. All his dealings with halter deserving traitors have been tinctured with the christian spirit of “forgive and forget.” The great love of country mingled with conciliation that flowed from his first message has tempered his whole Executive career, and the motto “Sic semper tyrannis,” whether the deed was of a diseased mind of a Judas bargain, as uttered by the wretched dastard who did it, was simply absurd as applied to this generous man, and history and the divinity in history that never dies, will retract no comfort from this motto for the bloody wretch and those who sympathize with him. Whatever pretext the assassin might have assumed, he signally failed here. But repinings are useless, the arrow is sped and the blow cannot be recalled. Though the noble head is bowed low, the name of the good man shall remain forever a tower of strength, for “Virtue alone outbuilds the pyramids; her ornaments shall last, when Egypt’s fall.”

But we can make his memory hallowed, by cherishing his example, and applying his principles to the institutions of his beloved country. Now while his goodness is fragrant in our hearts, let us strike hands over his grave with the unflinching resolve to maintain the Union and the integrity of the nation at all hazards. Now that the traitors at the South, are nearly disposed of, let us maintain eternal vigilance among us at the North, in these delicate days of reconstruction. Let us hope and pray that the goodness and wisdom of our dear departed President may inspire and strengthen his successor. Let us remember in our bereavement that Right is still, through much blood and sacrifice, triumphant and lives.

Local News.

How the news was received in this City.

The news of the assassination of President Lincoln was received in this city with sadness and sorrow on Saturday morning last. Hon. Benj. Douglas received the news first, and at once made it public by tolling his bell, and displaying his flags at half mast. Business generally was suspended, and the citizens gathered in crowds, anxious to learn the particulars of the terrible tragedy. The arrival of daily papers fell short of the demands, and an extra was immediately issued from this office. The bells of the city commenced tolling at 10 o’clock. Strong men were seen weeping and the general expression was that a great calamity had befallen the people. One or two persons were fool-hardy enough to express joy at the event, and they at once met their desserts. Many private dwellings and stores were draped in mourning, while the same was done to all public building. All of the churches were appropriately draped in mourning, and appropriate sermons delivered on Sunday.

The South Church was draped in mourning. A flag covered with crape hung over the desk, and flags were festooned in front of the singers’ gallery and upon the organ. The vase before the pulpit contained a cross of white flowers. The exercises commenced with singing a hymn of trust in God. Mr. Dudley’s text was in Isaiah 24:11; “All joy is darkened, the mirth of the land is gone.” It was not the first time, he said, that the chief magistrate had died in office. Harrison and Taylor so died and the men to succeed them ruled quietly in their place. For the first time a President’s life has gone down suddenly by an assassin’s weapon. It destroys the tissues of official plans and gives us all things to fear and to doubt. Abraham Lincoln died in the height of his fame. He has accomplished a work, perhaps all that he was fitted to do.—He saw the soul of his adversary die before it took his bodily life. He was the mildest and meekest of men, offending even by his leniency. One lesson this deed makes emphatic, and we need stronger moral muscle to stand for it: that treason is the end of all honor, and that treason defeated is treason still. It is useless to kiss infamy into high places, or trying to love a dastard into a saint.

The sermon in the Methodist Church, in memory of our late President, was delivered by Dr. Cummings. He evinced much feeling over the sad event, and spoke of Mr. Lincoln as a man of the highest endowments; that he had been a father indeed to the American people, in whom they could confide their hope and trust inviolate. He attributed the fearful deed to a class of men who had neither the manly courage to go and take up arms with their southern brethren against us, nor openly to declare their purpose to destroy our national life, but that while our brave men stood like a wall of steel in battle defense and nobly died, they were drinking the life blood of the nation. That in this deed they have shown their total depravity. Yet, he thanked God that our noble President was permitted to lead us through the darkest hours of our trials; that he was permitted to see the signs of peace.

Rev. Mr. Gilbert delivered and impressive sermon from Deut. 34:5, “And Moses the servant of the Lord died there in the land of Moab, by the commandment of the Lord.”

Rev. Mr. Bruce preached from the 46th Psalm, 10th verse, “Be still, and know that I am God.” We shall give extracts from his sermon next week.

At the North Cong. Church, the text of the pastor was from Psalms 82; 6th and 7th verses. In the concluding portion of the sermon, Mr. Taylor spoke of the President being in a theatre at the time of the assassination, would have desired it should have been different. Alluded to the first inauguration and to escape the assassin’s dagger—he travelled from Baltimore to Washington in disguise. He concluded by remarking that the tragedy on Friday night, in his opinion, was not the work of any combination of persons—but simply that of the tragedian, to add interest to the drama.

In the Church of the Holy Trinity in this city, a prayer for a sick person was offered in behalf of the Secretary of State, also the prayer for persons under affliction adapting it to the sorrowing family and relatives and the sorrows of a whole people. The sermon was dispensed with, only a few brief remarks being made, appropriate for the occasion. The officiating clergyman, the rector of the Church, reminded the congregation of the day, as the joyous festival of Easter. We commemorate, he observed, to-day the all glorious resurrection of our Saviour from the dead, and the certainty of our own resurrection also. It is a day ever associated in our minds with feelings of the deepest interest and the most heartfelt thankfulness, gladness and rejoicing. It is a day identified with our highest interests and our brightest hopes. These beautiful flowers, so appropriately laid here upon the morning of this festival season and so tastefully arranged, are fit emblems of the pure, the delightful, the life inspiring, the glorious associations connected with a day like this.—But we evince our gladness and our rejoicings to-day mid the deepest gloom and sadness, gloom and sadness pervading the thoughts, the minds and the hearts of all alike, irrespective of everything like party or political feeling and hence it is we have these indications of mourning and sorrow, which have so long been before us, in the very midst of this happy festival, still continued, still kept up. We are sorrowing at the terrible calamity that has befallen us as a people, at the awful crime that has been perpetrated at our national capital, and the possible, most fearful future results that yet may follow. Our Chief Magistrate has been stricken down by the hand of an assassin and is now no more. Abraham Lincoln is dead. He has died a martyr to his country. We feel ourselves unsuited and utterly unequal to the task of saying another word, and we proceed at once to the administration of the holy communion.”

At a meeting of the citizens of Middletown at Town Hall, Monday, to take into consideration the subject of having some appropriate exercises on the occasion of the Funeral of President Lincoln, Hon. Benj. Douglas was appointed Chairman, and A. Putnam and B. Bent, Jr. were appointed Secretaries. …


Returned from Dixie.—Samuel Birdsey who was a resident of this town some years before the breaking out of the war, but who removed to Wilmington, N. C. some five years since, returned to this city Saturday before last. After the breaking out of the war he visited here, and it was well known that he was then a strong sympathizer with the south. After his return he entered the rebel service, and remained there three years.—During the war his father died at Wilmington, the owner of property both at the north and the south. The son now returns without a farthing, while the property at the north has remained safe and increasing in value under the protection of the government which for three years he has sought to destroy.


We are gratified to learn that there is now a certainty that a public institution of great value, is to be established in this city, and, by the liberality of various friends, placed on a firm basis. We refer to the plan in contemplation of establishing a “Home for aged and destitute women,” to be known as “St. Luke’s Home”; and to be connected with the Church of the Holy Trinity, of this city. We are informed that although the management of the institution will be under the control of the Episcopal Church, the charity will include persons from all religious denominations, others than Episcopalians, having generously and with true christian philanthropy, contributed to the institution. It is also intended to offer the benefit and shelter of the Home to those who, desirous of its privileges may yet be enabled, in whole, or in part, to defray the expenses of their residence. We understand that the committee, having the matter in hand, have purchased from Mr. Peck, for the sum of $3,350, the large house, corner of Court and Pearl street, now in part occupied by the “Widows Home”; it being intended that this last institution shall be merged in “St. Lukes Home.” Among the liberal contributions and pledges to this noble charity are the following: One subscription of $1000; three of $500; four of $300; one of $250; one of $200; six of $100; and several of $50. The names of the contributors thus far, are: Mrs. Margaret DeKoven; Mrs. Henry DeKoven; Mrs. Mutter; Mrs. Jane Huntington; the Misses Sebor; Mrs. Elizabeth S. Dyer; Mrs. Frances Russell; Mrs. H. G. Hubbard; Mrs. F. B. S. Smith; Miss Oliver; Mrs. Oliver; Mrs. Joseph Alsop; Mrs. C. S. Watkinson; Aaron Pease, Esq.; Clinton Sage, Esq.; C. R. Sebor, Esq.; Dr. J. W. Alsop and S. W. Russell, Esq.; &c, &c. We trust that others of our citizens may become interested in this excellent object and subscribe liberally to the permanent endowment and efficacy of so important a charity in our midst.


It has been supposed that the genius who conducts the Sentinel, could occasionally tell the truth; but perhaps being in the constant habit of publishing political falsehoods, his disease has become chronic. He says in his last paper, “That he saw last summer, the City Street Repairers and Teams at work on a portion of the Road between the Ferry and Cromwell.

The fact is, he never saw any such thing. No City Street Repairers or Teams have ever worked on said road since the Turnpike was chartered. The next time you repeat your attacks upon the Street Commissioner, we beg of you to keep as near the truth as your habits will admit of.



Middletown obituaries, April 1865Obituary poem, 1865

Washington, April 15th, 3 A. M.

Major Gen. Dix: The President still breathes, but is quite insensible, as he has been ever since he was shot. He evidently did not see the person who shot him, but was looking on the stage, as he was approached behind.

Mr. Seward has rallied, and it is hoped he may live.

Frederick Seward’s condition is very critical. The attendant who was present was stabbed through the lungs and is not expected to live. The wounds of Major Seward are not serious.

Investigation strongly indicates J. Wilkes Booth as the assassin of the President. Whether the same or a different person that attempted to murder Mr. Seward remains in doubt.

Justice Carter is engaged in taking the evidence. Every exertion has been made to prevent the escape of the murderer. His horse has been found on the road near Washington.

E. M. Stanton, Secretary of War.

Laura Keene says J. Wilkes Booth is the assassin. She also says that she saw him and knew him.

Senator Sumner is at the President’s bedside weeping like a child. His cabinet and Vice President Johnson are also with him.

At twenty minutes past seven o’clock Saturday morning, the President breathed his last—closing his eyes as if falling to sleep, and his countenance assuming an expression of perfect serenity. There were no indications of pain, and it was not known that he was dead until the gradually decreasing respiration ceased altogether.

Dr. Gurley then proceeded to the front parlor, where Mrs. Lincoln. Mrs. John Hay, the Private Secretary and others were waiting where he offered a prayer for the consolation of the family.

Immediately after the President’s death, a Cabinet meeting was called by Secretary Stanton, and held in the room in which the corpse lay.

Secretaries Stanton, Welles, and Usher; Postmaster General Dennison; and Attorney-General Speed were present.

On Saturday, 12 m. Andrew Johnson was sworn into office as President of the United States by Chief Justice Chase. Secretary McCullough and Attorney General Speed and others were present. He remarked: “The duties are mine. I will perform them trusting in God.”

The President’s body was removed from the private residence opposite Ford’s theatre, to the Executive Mansion, at half past 9 o’clock in a hearse, and wrapped in flags. A dense crowd accompanied the remains to the house, where a military guard excluded the crowd, allowing none but the persons of the household and friends of the President to enter. Senator Yates and Representative Farnsworth were among the number admitted.

It is believed that the assassins of the President and of Secretary Seward are attempting to escape to Canada.


President Lincoln assassinated


Washington, April 14—President Lincoln and wife, with other friends, this evening visited Ford’s Theatre for the purpose of witnessing the performance of the “American Cousin.” It was announced in the papers that General Grant would also be present, but that gentleman took the late train of cars for New Jersey.

The theatre was densely crowded, and everybody seemed delighted with the scene before them. During the third act, and while there was a temporary pause for one of the actors to enter, a sharp report of a pistol was heard, which merely attracted attention, but suggesting nothing serious, until a man rushed to the front of the President’s box, waving a long dagger in his right hand, and exclaiming: “Sic Semper Tyrrannes,” and immediately leaped from the box, which was in the second tier, to the stage beneath and ran across to the opposite side, making his escape amid the bewilderment of the audience from the rear of the theatre, and mounting a horse fled.

The screams of Mrs. Lincoln first disclosed the fact to the audience that the President had been shot, when all present rose to their feet, rushing toward the stage, many exclaiming: “Hang him! hang him!” The excitement was of the wildest possible description, and of course there was an abrupt termination of the theatrical performance.

There was a rush toward the President’s box, when cries were heard, “Stand back and give him air,” “Has any one stimulants?”

General Grant and wife were advertised to be at the theatre, but he started for Burlington, N. J., at 6 o’clock. A cabinet meeting at which General Grant was present, the subject of the state of the country and the prospect of a speedy peace, was discussed. The President was very cheerful and hopeful, and spoke very kindly of General Lee and others of the confederacy, and of the establishment of a government in Virginia. All the members of the cabinet, except Mr. Seward, are now in attendance on the President.



From The Constitution, Wednesday, April 12, 1865 (volume 28, number 1424)

Eagle icon 1865

War News.

Lee telegraphed on Sunday that Grant had driven him a mile and a half, that he had suffered severely, held an untenable position, and requested that the city should be evacuated that night. The flight of the rebel leaders began at once—Jeff. Davis is said to have heard the news while in church. He had previously sold his furniture, and was ready to go at once. Leaving Mrs. Lee behind, he started for Charlotte, N. C. Other accounts say that he started with his family the previous Wednesday—the day Grant began his march—but subsequently returned to his capital. Gen. Weitzel now occupies his house, and Gen. Devins resides in the house Gov. Smith of Virginia. Our men approached the city very cautiously on Monday morning over ground, thick with torpedoes—so thick that our main body marched in single file, while pioneers pointed out the dangerous places.—No opposition was made to our approach; a small squadron of cavalry rode in, and Mayor Mayo handed over the keys at 7 A. M. Monday morning. Gen. Weitzel soon followed, and was greeted with enthusiastic cheers by citizens both white and black. The rebels set fire to many important buildings, in order to burn the tobacco on storage, and most of Main street is destroyed; but our men soon extinguished the fire. The State House, the Enquirer and Dispatch newspaper offices, and two or three bridges were burned. All the rebel magazines and gunboats were blown up. There were no Union prisoner found, all having been sent off for exchange the day before. Commissioner Ould handed to Gen. Mulford all the papers in his possession on the subject. The departure of the rebel army after Sheridan’s victory at Five Forks must have been very sudden, since they left all their tents behind. Our captures in Richmond amount to about one thousand rebel soldiers in health, and five thousand wounded, mainly in the hospitals, with 5,000 stands of small arms, and five hundred pieces of artillery. President Lincoln visited Richmond on Tuesday.

Official and general dispatches from Grant’s army and from Richmond continues to bring us good news. Our troops got possession of Burkesville, the place of junction of the Richmond and Danville, and Petersburgh and Lynchburgh Railroad, on Wednesday afternoon. Sheridan himself states that reinforcements were coming to him, and he feels confident of capturing Lee’s army. Grant was at last advices only a few miles east of Burkesville, and Sheridan was operating north of Grant. No junction between Lee and Johnson is possible, and the retreat of the rebel army of Virginia must be toward Lynchburg and the mountains.

Sheridan reports at 11 ¼ P. M. of Thursday, “The army made a stand at the intersection of the Burkes Station road with the road upon which they were retreating. I attacked them with divisions of the Sixth Army Corps and routed them handsomely, making a connection with the cavalry. I am still pressing on with both cavalry and infantry. Up to the present time we have captured Gens. Ewell, Kershaw, Burton, Corse, De Barre, Curtis, Lee, several thousand prisoners, fourteen pieces of artillery, with caissons and a large number of wagons. If the thing is pressed, I think Lee will surrender. As for the “pressing” we may safely leave Grant and Sheridan alone for that. Further dispatches from Gens. Meade, Humphreys and Wright give details of operations on Thursday, all of which were in every way favorable to our arms.—Meade says: “It is evident that to-day’s work is going to be one of the most important of the recent brilliant operations.” Humphreys says: “Our last fight, just before dark, at Sailor’s Creek, gave us two guns, three flags, considerable numbers of prisoners, 200 wagons, 70 ambulances, with mules and horses to about one half the wagons and ambulances.” Wright says: “The result has been a complete success.” And so the good work goes on.

There was great excitement on Friday by a report that Lee’s army had surrendered, but the joy was premature; it was Fitz Hugh Lee, and not the General in-chief, who had succumbed; at least such was the ultimate story—from Philadelphia. But there was enough of genuine news to keep up the joyful fever of patriotism which has marked every day and hour since Grant began his last glorious campaign. Our dispatches make it very clear if not already at the point of surrender, Lee will very soon be brought to that alternative; the unremitting blows of Sheridan’s avenging sword are too powerful to be endured; the rebels have not time to form an effective line of battle before our troops are upon them, and another disorderly rout is the result.


General Grant writes to General R. E. Lee, dated at Appomattox Court House, April 9th, 1865, in which he says: “In accordance with the substance of my letters to you of the 8th inst., I propose to receive the surrender of the Army of Northern Virginia on the following terms, to wit: Rolls of all the officers and men are to be made in duplicate, one copy to be given to an officer designated by me, the other to be retained by such officers as you may designate. The officers to give their individual paroles not to take arms against the Government of the United States until properly exchanged, and each company or regimental commander sign a like parole for the men of their commands. The arms, artillery and public property to be packed and stacked and turned over to the officers appointed by me to receive them. This will not embrace the side arms of the officers, nor their private horses or baggage. This done, each officer and man will be allowed to return to their homes, not to be disturbed by United States authority so long as they observe their paroles and the laws in force where they reside.”

General Lee replies: “I have received your letter of this date, containing the terms of surrender of the army of Northern Virginia, as proposed by you. As they are substantially the same as those express in your letter of the 8th inst., they are accepted. I will proceed to designate the proper officers, to carry the stipulations into effect.”


Richmond is taken and the rebel army completely routed—two things which the peace croakers have declared could not be done. They now turn their attention to the national debt, prophecying that it can never be paid. They might as well save their breath, if they wish to live to a good old age; for they will be as much mistaken in the last as in the first prediction. Every dollar of the government indebtedness will be paid. The people will remember the traitors who caused it.


The copperhead chairman of the town meeting in Milford on election day ordered the arrest of a man for hurrahing over the capture of Richmond. No constable was found willing to undertake the job, and cheers were given by the Union men to their hearts’ content.

Local News.

The news of the surrender of Lee’s army was received in this city early Monday morning, and caused great rejoicing. The fire bells were rung, steam whistles sounded, flags were displayed, and notwithstanding the rain, the firemen and citizens assembled and with drum and fife paraded the streets. At noon the procession visited Portland. The “little quaker” as usual was at work. At the factory of W. & B. Douglas, the bell which has rung for every union success during the war, was the first to ring out the welcome news. Work was immediately suspended for the day. The flag staff at the south park displayed bunting from top to bottom. At ten o’clock in the evening, the bells were again rung, bonfires burned, fire crackers set off, and for nearly an hour, 4th of July enacted over again.


If the Rip Van Winkle leather head who presides over the Sentinel & Witness, who I understand for some reason has taken up his abode in Cromwell, has not yet discovered that the city does not repair turnpike roads it is time he aroused himself from his sleepy state. Should he again get stuck in the mud on the south side of Sebethe bridge, I advise him to call on some other Hercules to extricate him than the Street Commissioner.



It is done, ‘Twere done quickly, and ‘tis well. A “political idiot” has been joyfully consigned to a political grave. The deed has inspired us all with new confidence in, and more respect for the old Second District. We take new courage. We understand our people now. They have shown us that their hearts are in the right place. They have become thoroughly awakened to their duties as citizens of the great Republic of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, James Madison, and all our illustrious fathers who solemnly declared that “all men are born free and equal.” We did not expect that things would go otherwise in this District, Mr. Editor. Considering the quality of the candidates on each side, it was a moral impossibility for our good people to vote their majority otherwise than they did. In the election just past so gloriously our people have acted like brave soldiers of right and truth. Like men they have vindicated principle, honor, and patriotism, and have given a death blow to duplicity, dishonor and treason. They have covered themselves with imperishable glory. This staunch old stronghold—‘the Second Congressional District”—shall henceforth and forever stand as the faithful exponent of the free principles of this great Republic.

Mr. Editor, what’s the matter with the little “Witness” man, or rather the ignorant booby who furnishes the twaddle and billingsgate for that dirty sheet? My article published in the Constitution previous to the late election worried the “Witness” editor (?) so much he had to trump up his ablest “knight of the quill,” (whom we suppose was none other than the man known as “Ed,”) and got him to write a long editorial for the Witness in reference to it, headed, “Hon. E. A. Russell.” In this remarkable production Ed says, “Mr. R. has always maintained for the Union and the Constitution !!!” Ed, we all know this to be an untruth, and for two reasons: 1st. Because we know that Russell hasn’t brains to maintain anything, else why did he try to enlist another man’s talent in the advocacy of his famous notion that “capital should own labor.” 2d. Because he has been long known to all as a self-acknowledged Disunionist. This can be proved, Ed, and the less you say about it the better. But what use is it to multiply words! The great statesman has fallen, and we shall hear of him no more forever. Peace be to his ashes, as for his memory it is not worth preserving.

Now, as Ed proceeds in a lengthy editorial, written for the soap-grease man who pretends to edit the “Witness,” he pays his respects to Mr. Warner—says Mr. W. opposed the war at its commencement, and that he “said openly on the street if Mr. Lincoln should insist on making war the people ought to go to Washington and hurl him from his place, &c.” Really, Ed, we are at a loss to know whether you meant this as a joke, or whether you was in earnest. However, after much effort to suppress our laughter sufficiently to enable us to write, we will endeavor to treat it as though we thought you serious. In the first place, if Mr. Warner opposed the war he did no more than every other good and true man ought to have done, and did do. What patriot in the land was not opposed to Sumpter’s being fired upon? Why, Ed, Mr. Warner would have been a monster not to have opposed the commencement of this war. We all opposed it, except those who said that the South was right, and that “they ought and would succeed!” But the cream of the joke comes in where you assert the Mr. Warner was for hurling President Lincoln from his place if he should make war! The idea is utterly preposterous. Such a remark, it is true would have been proper, about Mr. Lincoln or any other of our presidents, but as this war was commenced before Mr. Lincoln’s inauguration, it is not at all obvious that Mr. Warner ever made any such remark in regard to it.

Now, Ed, a parting word in your private ear! Let me advise you to post up a little on the elements of logic before you again write for Greasy’s paper.


April 8th, 1865.


Fast Day occurs on Friday of this week, the 14th. Public services will be held in several of the churches on the morning of that day.


Peace prices ad 1865 1Peace prices ad 1865 2


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January 2023

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Wordle: Middlesex County Historical Society - Civil War in Middletown, CT
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