Page:Confederate Military History - 1899 - Volume 1.djvu/538

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permitted Lee to send Longstreet to Chickamauga, and in the last days of November, 1863, produced the abortion of Mine Run.

The United States Congress assembled at this juncture, December 8, 1863, and received the President's congratulations on the favorable aspect of affairs. The message announced that by the complete opening of the Mississippi river the Confederacy was divided into two distinct parts. Tennessee and Arkansas had been cleared of insurgent control; emancipation was accepted in Maryland and missouri; one hundred thousand negro slaves were in the United States military service, and "the annual elections of 1863 are highly encouraging." The President pronounced the period as "the new reckoning—the crisis which threatened to divide the friends of the Union is past." Mr. Lincoln had sufficient grounds for the exult ant tone of his message.

The President of the Confederate States addressed the Southern Congress which assembled December 7, 1863, in his annual message admitting the "grave reverses," but called attention to the victories won by the gallant troops so ably commanded in the States beyond the Mississippi over the invaders of Louisiana and Texas, and to the successful defense of Charleston against the joint land and naval operations of the enemy, while on more than one occasion the army in Virginia had forced the invaders to retreat precipitately to their entrenched lines. "If we are forced," says the Confederate President, "to regret losses in Tennessee and Arkansas, we are not without ground for congratulation on successes in Louisiana and Texas." And to further encourage the South in its struggle for independence the message earnestly insisted that "whatever obstinacy may be displayed by the enemy in his desperate sacrifices of money, life and liberty in the hope of enslaving us, the experience of mankind has too conclusively shown the superior endurance of those