Lincoln and the Bluegrass: Slavery and Civil War in Kentucky

By William H. Townsend | Go to book overview

EIGHTEEN
With Malice toward None

EARLY in January, 1864, the Union candidate for mayor of Lexington was defeated by Joseph Wingate. Z. Gibbons, candidate for city attorney, whose platform was "unfaltering devotion to the Union cause," was overwhelmingly beaten by Richard H. Prewitt.1

On the same day the storm broke on the floor of the Senate, when Garret Davis of Kentucky, protesting absolute loyalty to the Union, introduced a vicious resolution against "Abraham Lincoln, his office holders, contractors and other followers," and appealed to "all men who are for ejecting Lincoln and his party from office and power."2

The yoke of martial law was now galling the anti- Lincoln element of the Bluegrass almost beyond endurance. General Burbridge was a stern, harsh commanding officer. Criticism of the government was "treason" to him, and he dealt with it accordingly. "For every depradation committed upon Union men, I will retaliate threefold upon the Copperheads and Rebel sympathizers in the vicinity," he wrote Colonel Maxwell.3 "Have the men been shot that I ordered?" he wired General

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