February 12

Clear and cold but no wind; started for picket at 9 a. m.; arrived on the line at 1 p. m. A part of our detail having through mistake to go to Pony Mountain, has returned this evening, and consequently I have had to move my headquarters up the line; am near Mrs. Battles, historic because of Union officers' escapades there. The house being between the lines the women connived in trying to get them captured; countersign is "Perth."

February Twelfth

Those who would shiver into fragments the Union of these States, tear to tatters its now venerated constitution, and even burn the last copy of the Bible, rather than slavery should continue a single hour, together with all their more halting sympathizers, have received, and are receiving their just execration; and the name and opinion and influence of Mr. Clay are fully and, as I trust, effectually and enduringly arrayed against them.

Abraham Lincoln
(Eulogy on Clay, 1852 )


The abolitionists were always the fiercest opponents of colonization. The practical improvement of the negro, in his native country, did not suit them so well as the impracticable idea of equalizing black men with white in a strange land.

George Lunt


Abraham Lincoln born in Kentucky, 1809

Gradual emancipation of slaves discussed at Maysville, Ky., 1849



Friday, February 12th, 6 a.m.—We did a record loading up in fifty minutes last night, chiefly medical cases, and took eight hours to crawl to Boulogne. Now we are on the way for Havre, but shall not get there till about 10 p.m. to-night, so they will have a long day in the train.

A good many of the lying-downs are influenza, with high temperatures and no voice. It is a bore getting to B. in the night, as we miss our mails and the 'Daily Mail.'

p.m.—This is an interminable journey. Have not yet reached Rouen, and shan't get to Havre till perhaps 2 a.m. The patients are getting very weary, especially the sitting-ups. The wards of acute liers you can run like a hospital. Some of the orderlies are now getting quite keen on having their wards clean and swept, and the meals and feeds up to time, and the washings done, but it has taken weeks to bring them up to it. When they do all that well I can get on with the diets, temperatures, treatments, and dressings, &c. On the long journeys we take round at intervals smokes, chocolate, papers, hankies, &c., when we have them. The Victoria League has done me well in bales of hankies. They simply love the affectionate and admiring messages pinned on from New Zealand, and one of them always volunteers to answer them.

We shall be up in shifts again to-night.

We are all hoping to have a day in Rouen on the way back, for baths, hair-washing, shopping, seeing the Paymaster, and showing the new Sister the sights. For sheer beauty and interestingness it is the most endearing town; you don't know which you love best—its setting with the hills, river, and bridge, or its beautiful spires and towers and marvellous old streets and houses.

158. Abigail Adams

12 February, 1777.

Mr. Bromfield was so obliging as to write me word that he designed a journey to the Southern States and would take particular care of a letter to you. I rejoice in so good an opportunity of letting you know that I am well as usual, but that I have not yet got reconciled to the great distance between us. I have many melancholy hours, when the best company is tiresome to me and solitude the greatest happiness I can enjoy.

I wait most earnestly for a letter to bring me the welcome tidings of your safe arrival. I hope you will be very particular and let me know how you are, after your fatiguing journey; how you are accommodated; how you like Maryland; what state of mind you find the Congress in. You know how little intelligence we received during your stay here with regard to what was passing there or in the army. We know no better now. All communication seems to be embarrassed. I got more knowledge from a letter written to you from your namesake, which I received since you left me, than I had before obtained since you left Philadelphia. I find by that letter that six Hessian officers, together with Colonel Campbell, had been offered in exchange for General Lee. I fear he receives very ill treatment. The terms were not complied with, as poor Campbell finds. He was much surprised when the officers went to take him and begged to know what he had been guilty of. They told him it was no crime of his own, but they were obliged, though reluctantly, to commit him to Concord Jail, in consequence of the ill treatment of General Lee. He then begged to know how long his confinement was to last. They told him that was impossible for them to say, since it laid wholly in the power of General Howe to determine it.

By a vessel from Bilbao, we have accounts of the safe arrival of Dr. Franklin in France, ten days before she sailed. A French gentleman who came passenger says we may rely upon it that two hundred thousand Russians will be here in the spring.

A lethargy seems to have seized our countrymen. I hear no more of molesting Great Britain. We just begin to talk of raising men for the standing army. I wish to know whether the reports may be credited of the Southern regiments being full.

You will write me by the bearer of this letter, to whose care you may venture to commit anything you have liberty to communicate. I have wrote to you twice before this; hope you have received them.

The children all desire to be remembered. So does your