Excerpts from The Constitution, April 31 [i.e., May 1], 1861 (volume 24, number 1218)
Statement of R. P. Winn, Drum Major of the Sixth Regiment
When the Sixth Regiment arrived at Baltimore, there were evident signs of riot among the citizens ; there was a reversion of the troops, so that the right was placed on the extreme left, with the exception of the staff. The railroad company undertook to take from the lower depot in Baltimore to the Washington depot the troops in detached portions of the train by horse power ; when they had carried over all except Co. D, City Guards of Lowell, and Capt. Dyke’s command, of Stoneham, and Capt. Sampson’s Boston Company the next (after the horses came down to be attached to the cars) commenced tearing up the rails and laying big anchors on the railroad and piles of lumber, for the purpose of cutting off the above named companies.
These companies seeing the communication cut off from their comrades, left the cars and formed a line, commanded by Adjutant Farr, and the order for march was given. Then the mob, after they had marched twenty or thirty feet, proceeded in front with a secession flag and commenced cheering for Jeff Davis and South Carolina, and groaning for Lincoln and n—– stealers from the North—Massachusetts in particular; and at this point the crowd was so dense that the soldiers were temporarily stopped. –They then used all gentle efforts to pass through the mob. Their progress was slow through the mob, and at the first turning to the left from the depot the troops wheeled into that street. Immediately after entering this street, an iron missile was thrown from a building which instantly killed one of Capt. Dyke’s command, striking him on his head—don’t know his name. I saw the iron thrown, but the crowd was so dense that I did not see it strike, but afterwards conversed with a policeman who took care of the body.
At this point the mob began hooting and yelling frightfully, and loud threats were uttered against the military. The troops however, maintained a strict reserve, neither showing themselves nor replying to the insults so plentifully heaped upon them. The crowd finding that they could not thus exasperate the volunteers, commenced throwing stones, brickbats and other missiles and eventually tearing up the pavements ; and hurling them in a perfect shower against the cars, smashing the windows, and severely wounding many of the troops. However, the first nine cars succeeded in reaching the depot, and departed for Washington.
Immediately after this one of the soldier’s guns was snatched from his hand and he instantly shot with his own gun ; then (I think without an order) the troops began to fire upon the mob, and at the first fire many were killed ; the firing then became general, but from what troops, cannot say, the mob using pistols freely with all kinds of missiles, making frequent attempts to get away the guns from our men by overpowering them, and from this point I know but little more ; but it is well known that the soldiers behaved like men and fought their way through to the Washington depot. The Band was not ordered out of the car, and were left at the lower depot with six hundred volunteers from Philadelphia, who had very few arms. After the first shot into the mob by our men, the mob thought they would have better game by attacking the unarmed men who were in the cars. They accordingly attacked the Pennsylvania Volunteers and the Band by throwing all sorts of missiles, breaking the windows and doors. Many of the Volunteers rushed from the cars only to be worse treated in the streets.
The Band were then attacked furiously. Finding the cars no place for their safety they left the car, attempting to save their property in the move, but were more furiously attacked in the street, were stoned, maltreated and clothes torn off, instruments destroyed, and then driven in various directions, each one supposing that the others were killed, and were only saved by the kindness of a friendly policeman and some ladies. Through the kindness of the police a train of cars was furnished for the Band and such others as wished to return, all further Southern passage being prevented. We were then at seven o’clock, P.M. Friday, taken to the care previously provided for us, protected by a large police force in a very curious manner, and even that did not protect us from insolent language ; and a few stones were hurled at the cars while the police were protecting us. We then went to Havre de Grace, and there we laid without lights or fire until day-light. Saturday morning, suffering much from cold and bruises, having lost our overcoats and blankets, and all our provisions. We then proceeded to Philadelphia, where we received our orders from Gen. Butler to return home.–Boston Journal.
‘My youngest boy came to me in a great rage once,’ said Mr. Lincoln in one of these speeches which particularly shocked our Democratic contemporaries, ‘and complained that his big brother had his knife, and would not give it up. I found on inquiry that he had sold the knife to his big brother, getting a fair equivalent in candy ; having eaten which, he now insisted on having the knife returned. The little fellow hung on and insisted on my interference. Bob sat still with the knife in his pocket. At last, getting impatient at the row, I said, ‘O! Bob, give him the knife. He needs it to make him quiet.’ ‘Yes,’ replied Bob, ‘but I need it more, father, to keep me quiet.” It is a very apt illustration of the position of the country three months ago, and not inappropriate now. There are still men left who play into the hands of the Southern traitors by this plea : ‘Give them what they want, and they will be quiet,’ say these gentlemen. ‘Don’t disturb them—only let them have their will—just give them what they want, even if it is not right or constitutional—what does it matter ? they need it to make them quiet.’ But the loyal Union men North and South need something to keep them quiet, too, and they need it more than the traitors.
Gov. Letcher has given Col. Lee and other late U. S. military officers assurances that no attack will be made upon the capital of the United States by Virginia troops. On this ground and some others, Col. Lee accepts the command of the Virginians. He is willing to defend Virginia, but does not wish to attack the United States.
Twenty-three southern cadets have left West Point in consequence of their refusal to renew the oath of allegiance to the United States.
A gentleman in New York asked one of the Massachusetts volunteers how many were going from that state. “How many?” was the reply, “we are all going.”
Steamer Bostona, with Ohio troops on board, was fired into by secessionists at Maysville, Ky., on the 19th—no one injured.
The Franklin line of propellers are all chartered by the government.
George Law has written a letter to President Lincoln, demanding of government that it open the lines of communication between the North and Washington.
Gov. Hicks has issued a proclamation assembling the legislature of Maryland at Frederick City as Annapolis is occupied by federal troops.
The legislature of Vermont met in extra session on Tuesday. An appropriation bill of at least half a million dollars will probably be passed. Large numbers of visitors are at the capital, and the excitement throughout the State is intense.
Departure of the Middletown Volunteers
Wednesday last was a day to be long remembered. On that day the volunteers for the service of the General Government were to leave town. We have never on any occasion whatever seen our community so deeply moved as it was then. The time fixed for the departure of the company was 2 o’clock in the afternoon by special train to New Haven. As early as ten o’clock the military companies and firemen began to make their appearance. At eleven o’clock the volunteers came down from the armory and were greeted by the assembled crowd with enthusiastic cheers. After various marchings and countermarchings, a line was formed in the prescribed order, as follows : First came the Regimental Band ; then the two companies from Portland, the Washington guard, Capt. Ransom and the Ingersoll Guard, Capt. Merrick ; the McDonough Guard, Capt. Gibbons, of this city ; after them came the several fire companies, many of the members bearing small flags in their hands ; after them followed an independent corps of students from Wesleyan University ; then came as military looking a set of men as one often sees, the home and ex-members of the Mansfield Guard under the command of Gen. Starr ; after the Guard was the Volunteer Company, comprising about eighty men, under the command of Capt. Dickerson. A procession of citizens completed the line. It was after twelve o’clock when the procession had passed over its route, and arrived again in front of the Court House. It was then dismissed for dinner. Soon after one o’clock a line was again formed. At this time Main street was a perfect jam. The oldest inhabitant had never seen anything equal to it. From below College to far above Washington streets the side walks were crowded, while between the Post Office and Berkeley Divinity School there was a dense crowd from one side of the street to the other.
The procession, under the direction of Augustus Putnam, Esq., Chief Marshal of the day, marched to the residence of Bishop Williams, when the Bishop delivered a patriotic and soul stirring address to the volunteers. He told them that they were going at the call of the Government to maintain the constitution and the laws, and to protect the flag of their nation which has been insulted and assailed by those whose hands should have withered in death before they should have engaged in this unholy work. Bishop Williams has no sympathy with traitors, and he has, during the last week, taken occasion to express in a most decided manner his determination to have no fellowship with those who espouse the cause of treason against the Government. His address to the volunteers was in this spirit. It was full of pure patriotism, and hearty energetic determination to sustain the Government and the laws. After the address, the Bishop presented a sword to Capt. Dickerson. One or two other presentations were made, the Berkley students sung the “Star Spangled Banner,” and by that time it was time for the train to leave. The rush to the depot was immense. Five thousand people must have gathered in and about the building, and along the track to greet the volunteers as they passed. The train consisted of five cars, four of which were well filled. The Band and Gen. Starr’s company went with them to New Haven. At Berlin a Hartford company of volunteers joined them. On arriving at New Haven, they marched at once to the State House, where they were quartered and where they now remain.
arrived in Washington on Saturday, and was immediately placed in command of the military of the District.
A company of volunteers has been formed among the students of Wesleyan University. They were to meet last evening to organize and appoint their officers.
was circulated in town on Sunday that an armed vessel from the Confederate States was at the mouth of the river. It made some stir in some quarters, when enquiries were set on foot, and it was found to be no war vessel at all, but a very peaceable schooner from Baltimore loaded with coal.