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Diary of Charles Francis Adams, 1865

Monday 10th

10 April 1865

Wednesday 12th

12 April 1865
11 April 1865
Tuesday 11th

Among the letters this morning came a short one from Charles, saying that he had just got his orders to take his regiment to Grant, and was busily engaged in starting them off. At the same time the later news today gives accounts of a general movement of Grant, indicating final operations to hem in his opponent within the lines of Richmond. This sobered me all day, as it brought back so wildly the sensations of the year 1863. I can only hope that this struggle will soon inspire General Lee with a conviction that no benefit can be expected from the slaughter of more men. It is plain that the decision now rests exclusively with him. Yet for the same time to come I must await with anxiety the arrival of the Steamers. Very busy in small matters. Went to the city partly to draw money, and partly to execute a commission for Edward Brooks. At three went by appointment to see Lord Russell. He had just come to town and had mislaid the Despatches, so that we could not talk of them. I had however received others which I showed him. Especially the return of the copy of the note to the three emissaries, which I had sent out, on the ground that it was not properly authenticated and had been seen by our government. Certainly I did not understand at the time that Lord Russell had designed to pursue that course. My idea was that he could send out a separate letter through the British representation, perhaps by a special messenger to the lines. His Lordship said nothing, but asked252 me to send him copies together with the paper itself—i e copies of the letters between Grant and Lee. We talked somewhat of the movements of the rebel vessells here and in the other points which they frequent, such as Melbourne and Bermuda, but without any conclusion. He wondered they did not give it up as a bad business, for it certainly produced no good to them. The only hope they could have, would be, to bring about a misunderstanding, between the two countries. I read to him one or two short Despatches from Mr Seward which where very amicable. and had a good effect. He alluded to my last long note to him, only as having received it, but it was so grave a matter that he could not reply without first consulting the Cabinet. And they would not meet for some days. I took my leave, upon which he remarked that as the Senate had adjourned, and no nomination had been made to fill my place, he hoped that my stay was probable. I thanked him, and added that I had been left without information as yet of any action upon my application to be relieved. He then repeated his favorable wish. Considering the very unpleasant nature of my duty at times since I have been here, I think I may regard this testimony with satisfaction. Perhaps by this policy I may have contributed almost as much to the rescue of my country from its recent perils, as many who have made more bloody demonstration in the field. Returned home after leaving cards on Mr Schleiden, Mr Barreda, and Count Lavradio. Walk around Regent’s park—and quiet evening, reading Mr Mill.

Cite web page as:

Charles Francis Adams, Sr., [date of entry], diary, in Charles Francis Adams, Sr.: The Civil War Diaries (Unverified Transcriptions). Boston: Massachusetts Historical Society, 2015. http://www.masshist.org/publications/cfa-civil-war/view?id=DCA65d101