The Salmon P. Chase Papers - Vol. 3

By John Niven; James P. McClure et al. | Go to book overview

authorised under existing laws to to take the responsibility of paying it in coin, you will ask congress to authorise you to do so. If they should fail to do so, the censure, if there should be any, as I apprehend there would, must then fall on Congress instead of the Dept.

I write in the frankness of real friendship, without other interest in the question than that which belongs to a friend of his country and its financial head, and in this light I know you will regard what I have said.

Faithfully yours GEORGE OPDYKE

Hon. S. P. Chase

Chase had sent the report on December 6. "I shall be much gratified if it receives the approval of one who has brought to the consideration of these topics so strong and clear a judgment as you have," he wrote. Chase to Opdyke, Dec. 6, 1862 ( Chase Papers, Hist. Soc. of Pa.).
Opdyke failed to complete the word after hyphenating it at the end of a line.

TO ABRAHAM LINCOLN

Autograph letter. Abraham Lincoln Papers, Library of Congress (micro 24:0302).

Washington, Decr. 20. 1862.1

My dear Sir,

I intended going to Philadelphia this afternoon; but shall, of course, observe your directions "not to leave town"

Will you allow me to say that something you said or looked, when I handed you my resignation this morning, made on my mind the impression, that, having received the resignations both of Gov. Seward and myself, you felt you could relieve yourself from trouble by declining to accept either and that the feeling was one of gratification.2

Let me assure you few things could give me so much satisfaction as to promote in any way your comfort, especially if I might promote at the same time the success of your administration, and the good of the country which is so near your heart.

But I am very far from desiring you to decline accepting my resignation--very far from thinking, indeed, that its non-acceptance and my continuance in the Treasury Department will be most for your comfort or for the benefit of the country.

On the contrary I could not if I would conceal from myself that recent events have too rudely jostled the unity of your cabinet and disclosed an opinion too deeply seated and too generally received in Congress & the Country to be safely disregarded that the concord in judgment and action essential to successful administration does not prevail among its members.

By some the embarrassment of administration is attributed to me; by others to Mr. Seward; by others, still to other Heads of Departments.

-340-

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