Today in History:

130 Series I Volume LI-II Serial 108 - Supplements Part II

Page 130 MD., E. N. C. PA., VA., EXCEPT S. W., & W. VA. Chapter LXIII.

more consequence than Harper's Ferry. It would not probably be relieved from Washington, as an attack would be feared on that place from Virginia, nor from Baltimore, as they would fear a revolution there. So far let the movement on Hagerstown rest as a single operation. But why not, say in ten days, and before the election in Maryland, make a simultaneous movement on Baltimore and Washington and Hagerstown, and thus strike a decided blow, which would derange all Scott's operations and delay his advances several months, if not lead to peace?

Here are the details: The same day the force leaves Harper's Ferry for Hagertsown send a force of 2,000 to 3,000 men, with four pieces of light artillery, by two or three trains to Baltimore, the direction of the movement being kept secret at Harper's Ferry, and the troops thrown into Baltimore unexpectedly and carrying the U. S. flag where they would arrive early in the morning and attack the Northern troops on the edge of the city now occupying two positions, one mile apart, each being attacked in succession or at the same time, if each is not much superior to half the force sent to Baltimore. It could be given out at Harper's Ferry that these troops were going in cars to Cumberland to meet the Ohio forces, and thus make the surprise in Baltimore complete. This attack on Baltimore would revolutionize the State of Maryland and bring out in that State about 6,000 armed men and as many more imperfectly armed, who could delay the passage of troops from the North by again burning bridges, &c. These two movements being successful, the one on Washington would probably have the effect of driving Lincoln out of that city, and perhaps a retreat from Washington down the Potomac. Suppose a part or all of these movements to be unsuccessful we have the same means of defense left as now, or in fact relatively a better, because I think Southern troops are reaching Virginia faster now than Northern troops are coming to Washington and better drilled. But I am sure the attacwould be successful, and the one on Baltimore also, which would have to be followed up by the attack on Washington, or Baltimore and Maryland would be again reduced in place of operating with the South to check Northern re-enforcements. The problems of war are difficult of solution, but I fear if the South adopts altogether the defensive our troops may be discouraged, and the North be permitted deliberately to mass large forces at many points, who will improve in dril and discipline and become monthly more formidable. Against the policy of beginning fierce hostilities on a large scale is to be weighed the chances of a peaceful solution of the difficulties by a reaction of feeling in the North. I fear that cannot be counted on. The whole Northern mind seems hopelessly perverted and stultified, and has become desperate and willing to see the whole country ruined. Captain Bradley T. Johnson, of Maryland, now at Harper's Ferry, is familiar with that part of the country.


TUESDAY, June 4, 1861.*

* * * *

The Governor received a communication from His Excellency Jefferson Davis, President of the Confederate States, in answer to the several advices of the council of the 1st instant, which the Governor submitted to the council for advice and ordered the same to be also filed. There-upon the following was the action and advice of the council:

Resolved, That a committee of the council be appointed to wait upon President Davis and ascertain as far as they may the significance of


*From the Executive Journal of the State of Virginia.


Page 130 MD., E. N. C. PA., VA., EXCEPT S. W., & W. VA. Chapter LXIII.