Report of the Committee of the General Assembly of the State of Delaware, together with the Journal of the Committee, and the Testimony taken before Them, in regard to the Interference by United States Troops with the General Election held in the State on the Fourth Day of November, 1862.
Election interference, Civil War-era Delaware legislative committee report investigating “actual interference by the Federal Government with the most sacred right of the people of the State, the right to the free expression of their opinion at the ballot-box, in the choice of State and local officers.” (p. [iii]) A slaveholding border state, Delaware remained loyal to the Union. Its southernmost county Sussex, however, skewed Democratic and many there were sympathetic to the Confederate cause.
The committee was particularly concerned that, in 1861 and 1862, federal troops under Brig. General Henry Hayes Lockwood (a Delaware native) and troops of the Maryland Home Guard allegedly entered the state and disarmed volunteer militia companies commanded by Democrats. The companies commanded by Republicans were permitted to retain their arms, the invading troops even attending Republican political meetings.
Further concerns of alleged harassment, election tampering, the forced taking of unconstitutional test-oaths, and illegal arrests and imprisonments had the committee asking who gave the orders, under what circumstances the troops were commanded to enter the state, and “whether their presence was necessary to preserve the public peace, and insure a fair and impartial election”. (p. iv)
The Report includes testimony from over 125 persons including three past Democratic governors from southern Delaware. Former Democratic Governor of Delaware Gove Saulsbury led the joint legislative committee which concluded that there was “a deliberate design and purpose on the part of the leading Republican politicians of the State, and an unscrupulous and despotic administration at Washington to invade the sovereignty of Delaware, and trample under foot the most sacred right of her citizens. ... [and condemning those who] sought to defeat the fair expression of the popular will at the polls by potent influence of Federal bayonets.” (pp. xxix–xxx)
Very scarce in original printed wrappers.
Description: Report of the Committee of the General Assembly of the State of Delaware, together with the Journal of the Committee, and the Testimony taken before Them, in regard to the Interference by United States Troops with the General Election held in the State on the Fourth Day of November, 1862.
Dover, Del.: Printed by James Kirk, 1863. xxx, 358, ii (index)pp. 8vo. Original printed wrappers with expert tissue mends; very good.