Sunday, July 22, 2012

A Response to Lincoln's Call for 300,000 Troops

In response to Abraham Lincoln's July 1862 call for 300,000 more troops from the states for the Union army, the Adjutant General's Office, Headquarters Kentucky Volunteers, issued this directive, as published in the July 19, 1862 Covington Journal.

GENERAL ORDERS, No. 18
The President of the United States, acting upon a request from the Governors of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virgina, Michigan, Tennessee, Missouri, Indiana, Ohio, ,Minnesota Illinois, Wisconsin and the President of the Military Board of Kentucky, has called into the service an additional force of three-hundred thousand men. Of this force, Kentucky is expected to furnish, as early as practicable, four regiments of infantry, a part of her quota under the late call.

(Note: Kentucky Governor Beriah Magoffin sympathized with the South and when Lincoln's first call for 75,000 volunteers went out after the firing at Fort Sumter, Magoffin promised "I will send not a man nor a dollar for the wicked purpose of subduing my sister Southern States" so the President did not even pretend that Kentucky's governor belonged on this list. Instead, John Baylor Temple represented Kentucky on this list.)

It is enough for loyal Kentuckians to know that their country needs their aid. The State has already in the service thirty-four regiments, two battalions and two batteries, and her troops (illegible) in the field have distinguished themselves at Wild Cat, at Ivy Mountain, at Middle Creek, at Mill Springs, at Fort Donelson, and at Shiloh! The battles in which her soldiers have been engaged have all been victories.

Other battles have to be fought, and more laurels are to be won. The rebellion has to be put down and the national unity and authority maintained. Towards the accomplishment of that great end, let Kentucky so act her part, that she will vindicate her claim to be called "the military State of the Union."

Relying upon the love of country and the courage of the people, there is no fear, but these regiments will speedily report themselves with their full complement, and be ready to take up the line of march to whatever point they may be required to go.

Special instructions to recruiting officers will be issued without delay. 

By order: 
John W. Finnell
Adj. Gen. Ky. Vols. 

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The next post will give more details on the system of recruiting Finnell established and details on some army organization.

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