February 11

The weather has been clear and pleasant, but intensely cold for this latitude. Lieutenant C. F. Nye returned from Vermont this evening looking as rotund and hearty as ever; received a letter from home; all well; have got to start for a three-days' tour of picket to-morrow. Capt. H. R. Steele is officer of the day; wind blowing furiously to-night.

Thursday, February 11th.—We have spent most of the day at St Omer, and got a lovely walk in this morning, along the canal, watching the big barges which take 2000 tons of beetroots for sugar.

There is a scheme on foot for fitting up these big barges as transport for the sick (this one came from Furnes) as moving Clearing Hospitals. I've been over one, in Rouen. They are not yet in use, but might be rather jolly in the summer.

It is the warmest spring day we've had. I had my second French class this afternoon again at St Omer. We are now moving on, up to Bailleul. I expect we shall take patients on this evening, and have them all night.

February Eleventh

Equality does not exist between blacks and whites. The one race is inferior in many respects, physically and mentally, to the other. This should be received as a fixed invincible fact in all dealings with the subject.

Alexander H. Stephens
(Vice-President of the Confederacy )

 

I will say in addition to this that there is a physical difference between the white and black races which I believe will forever forbid the two races living together on terms of social and political equality.

Abraham Lincoln
(President of the United States )

 

Alexander H. Stephens born in Georgia, 1812

 

 

February 11

February 11, 1880.--Victor de Laprade [Footnote: Victor de Laprade, born 1812, first a disciple and imitator of Edgar Quinet, then the friend of Lamartine, Lamennais, George Sand, Victor Hugo; admitted to the Academy in 1857 in succession to Alfred de Musset. He wrote "Parfums de Madeleine," 1839; "Odes et Poèmes," 1843; "Poèmes Evangéliques," 1852; "Idylles Héroiques," 1858, etc. etc.] has elevation, grandeur, nobility, and harmony. What is it, then, that he lacks? Ease, and perhaps humor. Hence the monotonous solemnity, the excess of emphasis, the over-intensity, the inspired air, the statue-like gait, which annoy one in him. His is a muse which never lays aside the cothurnus, and a royalty which never puts off its crown, even in sleep. The total absence in him of playfulness, simplicity, familiarity, is a great defect. De Laprade is to the ancients as the French tragedy is to that of Euripides, or as the wig of Louis XIV. to the locks of Apollo. His majestic airs are wearisome and factitious. If there is not exactly affectation in them, there is at least a kind of theatrical and sacerdotal posing, a sort of professional attitudinizing. Truth is not as fine as this, but it is more living, more pathetic, more varied. Marble images are cold. Was it not Musset who said, "If De Laprade is a poet, then I am not one?"

February 11, 1863

JUST  at night, as I had finished the above, the Laurel Hill, the boat that brought us from quarantine to Chalmette, tied up in front of camp and down came our tents and on board we went. We came up the river past New Orleans and between that city and Algiers, which is quite a large place on the left hand shore. New Orleans seems a big city, but lies as low as the river. A high dock all along its front is built up with timber and is so high only the upper parts of the buildings show from the river. No streets are seen at all. We also passed a place called Carrolton and very soon after landed at what is said to be Camp Parapet. There are no tents near the river but there are thousands a short distance back. The outskirts of Carrolton come close up on the down-river side, while the up-river side has a high bank reaching from the river back as far as I can see. Beyond that is an unexplored country (to me), and away in the distance appears to be just such a forest as was in sight back of Camp Chalmette. A good-looking dwelling house and a few small buildings are near by and the ground is tramped bare of all vegetation, as if soldiers had just moved away. We came down the Levee and put up our tents and crawled in, for it was night by that time. We have had some rain and some sunshine, but the weather is warm and altogether I like our present place of abode the best of any we have yet had since we left Camp Millington. Another case of smallpox has developed, but he was hustled to a tent way back of camp and I suppose our arms will have to be pricked again. Mine looks as if a setting hen had picked it now. Miss Kate Douglass, from Amenia Union, came to camp yesterday and Captain Bostwick and several officers have gone to the city with her. Report says the captain and she are to be married to-night. Six months in the service and I have so far been only an expense to Uncle Sam. But I have seen something of the big farm the Rebs hope to rob him of and I hope I may yet do something to put him in full possession of it again. Letters from home, also one from Walter Loucks, who is in the hospital at New Orleans.

83. John Adams

Philadelphia, 11 February, 1776.

Here I am again. Arrived last Thursday, in good health, although I had a cold journey. The weather, a great part of the way, was very severe, which prevented our making very quick progress. My companion [124] Was agreeable and made the journey much less tedious than it would have been.

I can form no judgment of the state of public opinions and principles here, as yet, nor any conjectures of what an hour may bring forth.

Have been to meeting, and heard Mr. Duffield from Jeremiah ii. 17: "Hast thou not procured this unto thyself, in that thou hast forsaken the Lord thy God, when He led thee by the way?" He prayed very earnestly for Boston and New York, supposing the latter to be in danger of destruction. I, however, am not convinced that Vandeput will fire upon that town. It has too much Tory property to be destroyed by Tories. I hope it will be fortified and saved. If not, the question may be asked, "Hast thou not procured this?" etc.

To-morrow Dr. Smith is to deliver an oration in honor of the brave Montgomery. I will send it, as soon as it is out, to you. There is a deep anxiety, a kind of thoughtful melancholy, and in some, a lowness of spirits approaching to despondency, prevailing through the southern colonies, at present, very similar to what I have often observed in Boston, particularly on the first news of the Port Bill, and last year about this time, or a little later, when the bad news arrived which dashed their fond hopes, with which they had deluded themselves through the winter. In this or a similar condition we shall remain, I think, until late in the spring, when some critical event will take place, perhaps sooner. But the arbiter of events, the sovereign of the world, only knows which way the torrent will be turned. Judging by experience, by probabilities, and by all appearances, I conclude it will roll on to dominion and glory, though the circumstances and consequences may be bloody.

In such great changes and commotion, individuals are but atoms. It is scarcely worth while to consider what the consequences will be to us. What will be the effects upon present and future millions, and millions of millions, is a question very interesting to benevolence, natural and Christian. God grant they may, and I firmly believe they will, be happy.

Footnotes:

[124]Elbridge Gerry, who had been chosen a delegate in the place of Thomas Cushing, who had retired.