Following the American Civil War Sesquicentennial with day by day writings of the time, currently 1863.

Post image for There would be no peace. Hurrah.

There would be no peace. Hurrah.

February 17, 2015

Adams Family Civil War letters; US Minister to the UK and his sons.

Charles Francis Adams, U.S. Minister to the U.K., to his son, Charles.

London, February 17, 1865

The Canada brought out the account of the peace commissioners from Richmond, and the coming out of Mr. Seward to meet them, with the President in the background. The effect was to create a general impression that peace was at once to follow. The consternation was extraordinary. The public funds fell. All sorts of securities, except the rebel loan and the United States stocks, went down. The price of cotton was lower by four cents a pound and hardly any could be bought even at that. You would have thought that a great calamity had befallen the good people of England. What would have happened, had the story lasted, I should not dare to say. Happily for the distressed nerves of our friends, the next day brought them a little relief. A steamer had come with three days later news. It was not so bad as they had feared. The conference had dispersed re infecta. There would be no peace. Hurrah. The papers of this morning are all congratulating the public that the war will go on indefinitely. The Times pathetically laments that it can foresee no end of it, excepting in the mutual exhaustion of the parties! i.e., the very end which it most desires to see! Such is the spectacle of alternations of hope and fear about our misfortunes, which this people is doomed to present to us for some months to come! I do not envy the figure it will make with posterity. . . .

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