Sunday, December 16, 2007

ON THIS DAY: Monday, Dec. 16, 1861

“Love You Much”

Lt. Col. Rutherford B. Hayes, whiling away the winter with his 23rd Ohio Volunteer Infantry in Fayetteville, western Virginia, writes a loving note to Lucy, his very pregnant wife, who is expecting to give birth any day now at their home in Cincinnati.

“Dearest,” Rud writes. “I think of you constantly now. Let me know all about you all the time. I will send you a dispatch a dispatch from as here as soon as our [telegraph] operator is at work just to show you that we are not far apart…Kisses for all the boys and 'love you much.'


ELSEWHERE IN THE NEWS: The ever-perplexing Clement L. Vallandigham (pictured above), Congressman from Ohio, offers the House a resolution commending Capt. Charles Wilkes, captain of the Navy warship San Jacinto for capturing Confederate envoys Mason and Slidell. The Trent affair (named for the British ship from which the commissioners were forcibly removed, has infuriated the English and turned into a huge embarrassment for the United States. Right now, the U.S. government is discussing “at the highest level” (meaning Lincoln and his cabinet) how to get out of this mess. What on earth was Vallandigham thinking? Was he trying to cause mischief for the U.S.? Or was he, a bitter opponent of the war who nonetheless considered himself a patriot and opposed secession, sincere? In any case, the House quickly buries the resolution in committee.

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