Document from Apr. 14, 1881

Louisiana's tribute to Abraham Lincoln

  • Full Title

    Louisiana's tribute to the memory of Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States : public demonstration in the city of New Orleans, April 22, 1865 ; resolutions, speeches of Christian Roselius and others, etc., etc.

  • Description

    Printed in 1881, this book is a complication of reactions to Lincoln's Death from the city of New Orleans.

  • Transcription

    [cover:]
    Louisiana’s Tribute
    To the Memory of
    Abraham Lincoln,
    President of the United States
    Public Demonstration in the City of New Orleans
    April 22, 1865
    Resolutions, Speeches of Christian Roselius and Others, Etc., Etc.,
    Compiled by J. S. Whitaker, Chairman.
    New Orleans: Picayune Office Job Print, 66 Camp Street.
    1881.

    [page 3:]
    New Orleans, April 14, 1881
    Hon. William E. Shutt, Springfield Ills.:
    My Dear Sir, —
    When in the summer of 1878, I visited Springfield, one of the chief pleasures I experienced was in passing over places made to certain extent sacred as having been once the home of Abraham Lincoln. You remember how I was struck with the simplicity of his dwelling, and how the recital of many incidents of his noble and unostentatious life as a citizen of Illinois interested me.
    With you I finally visited the tomb in your beautiful cemetery, where repose his remains, and while the crypt or chamber in the monument I examined the various records commemorative of the life of our martyred President, and read the eulogiums pronounced upon him in every State and city of this vast nationality he so largely contributed to save.
    Among all of these I found no fitting memorial from the State of Louisiana where the news of his terrible taking off by the hands of an assassin produced as much of grief, and of horror, as in any other portion of the Union.
    In the following pages taken from “The New Orleans Times,” then conducted by my friend Thomas P. May, Esq., you will find the proceedings by which our people sought to demonstrate our sorrow and their appreciation of our national loss.
    By placing these memorials among others in the Monument you will, while conferring a favor on me personally, preserve, what I esteem, an earnest tribute to one of the greatest and noblest characters, that has adorned the annals of our Country
    Respectfully, Yours,
    J. S. Whitaker

    --
    We extract the following leading article of the N.O. Times of the morning of 19th, of April, from the pen of Thos. P. May
    Assassination of the President and Secretary of State.
    The astounding intelligence which it is our painful duty this morning to announce, will paralyze our readers with a sense of unutterable terror, as it must already have paralyzed the mass of the people of the United States. It is difficult to bring the mind to conceive of an atrocity so swift and terrible, unrelenting and devilish. The civilized world will stand shuddering and appalled at the contemplation of so black a deed, and try vainly for words to characterize its utter enormity. The blows struck at President Lincoln and Secretary Seward have gone to the core of the great heart of the nation. The poignant anguish of those fatal wounds penetrate the bosoms of the loyal millions of our country. It seems terrible that the great epoch of a nation’s redemption from a vast and prolonged conspiracy, must needs have been marked by a deed so foul, and a bereavement so afflictive; that the leader of the nation, through its terrible night of civil war, and his chief advisor, must needs have fallen by the hands of assassins before they could witness the fruition of what they have so long, so ardently and ably labored for.
    Our heart and hand fail us in the further contemplation of this inexpresibly painful tragedy, for which history furnishes no parallel of enormity.
    The country mourns a terrible bereavement. Let us bow in submission to this awful decree of Almighty God, and pray and trust that out of this great affliction good may come to the nation at last.

    --
    In this Evening’s issue of the Times of the 19th, appeared the following.
    The melancholy news of this morning struck every one with horror at the cowardly deed, which has bereaved the Nation of its head and afflicted the people that delighted to do him honor. Seconding the desire of the people the Mayor of the city that once took steps to declare all city business suspended, at the same time that the bells of the city be rung at twelve o’clock, and the official places hung with crape, and such testimonials as would show the sympathy of our people with the Nation in this calamity. The citizens met at Liberty Hall for the purpose of giving expression to their sentiment at this unholy and nefarious deed.

    --
    Called to Order
    Thos. J. Durant arose and stating that the Nation and our people stood aghast at the most appalling crime, suggested the propriety of taking immediate action and nominated Judge Howell, of the Supreme Court, as chairman.
    Before taking his seat the Chairman of the meeting confessed that words were inadequate to express his deep horror at this most atrocious and appalling crime. The deepest feelings were those that were inexpressible. The heart of the nation was now throbbing painfully at the misfortune which had befallen the people in the loss of Abraham Lincoln, the President of the United States. He could only hope that in the providence of God, even this calamity might work for good.
    The nomination of T.P. May as Secretary of the meeting was accepted unanimously.

    --
    The Sentiments.
    The sentiments of each one of the speakers, of every citizen present, whatever his occupation or his calling, was of the most unfeigned regret as well as horror at the atrocity of the crime. These sentiments were uttered as each one of speakers made suggestions as to the steps which should be taken in the matter. There was no difference of opinion, the only difference being as to the best mode of expressing the feeling of the people.
    --
    The Results of The Deliberations
    After many suggestions as to the place of meeting, after several motions were argued, it was finally concluded that a committee of five be appointed, on whom should devolve all arrangements necessary for the assembly of the citizens on Saturday next. The President appointed on this committee Judge Whitaker, W.T. Gilbert, D. Emely, J.G. Belden, B. Campbell —Judge J.S. Whitaker to act as Chairman.

    --
    The District Courts Closed
    The Judges of the District Courts held a joint session in the rooms of the Second Court, and proposed resolutions concerning the recent calamity. The following is an extract from the minutes of the meeting:
    Whereas, The nation is called upon to mourn a great national calamity which has befallen it, in the untimely death of Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States, and William H. Seward, Secretary of State:
    Be it resolved, That we, the Judges of the six District Courts of New Orleans, considering it eminently proper as a mark of the high respect and esteem in which the deceased were held, and recognize their many virtues, do adjourn until Monday, the 24th inst.

    --
    State Offices Ordered to be Closed.
    State of Louisiana, Executive Department,
    New Orleans, April 19, 1865
    owing to the mournful news of the death of the President of the United States and Secretary of State, under circumstances calculated to strike horror to the minds of all good citizens, it is hereby ordered that all offices connected with the State to be closed to-day and to-morrow, the 20th inst.
    J. Madison Wells, Governor of Louisiana

    --
    Action by the First District Court.
    At the opening of the First District Court this morning, on motion of the Attorney General, and on suggesting that a telegram announcing the appalling news that two great and illustrious citizens of this Republic—Abraham Lincoln, our honored and immortal President, and our world-renowned Secretary of State, Wm. H. Seward--- have fallen in the plentitude of their fame at the hands of diabolical assassins, on account of the devotion of the said President and Secretary to American liberty and the rights of man, it is ordered, that this court do now adjourn till Thursday (to-morrow) morning, at 10 o’clock, to enable all its officers and employees to take part in the ceremonies of mourning and woe.

    --
    Action of the Firemen’s Charitable Association.
    Fireman’s Charitable Association,
    New Orleans, April 19, 1865—12 o’clock
    The Fire Department of this city, in view of the sad calamity which has befallen the country in the death of the President of the United States and of the Secretary of State, are requested to suspend the national flag at half-mast from their respective Engine Houses immediately after the publication of this notice.
    I.N. Marks, President
    Alfred Belanger, Chief Engineer.

    --
    Action of the Firemen’s Charitable Association
    The Firemen’s Charitable Association, as will be noticed by the advertisement, have requested the Fire Department of New Orleans to raise the flag at half-mast over all the Engine Houses, as a mark of sorrow in view of the great national bereavement.

    --
    The Foreign Consuls
    The flags of the offices of the foreign consuls in this city are at half-mast to-day, in appropriate observance of the terrible affliction which has befallen the country.

    --
    The Customhouse
    The various offices of the Customhouse are draped in mourning, and business is suspended

    --
    The Postoffice
    The Postoffice is closed for the day, and preparations are making to drape the exterior of the building in mourning.

    --
    From the Times of April 20, 1865
    The Appearance of the City Yesterday.
    The history of New Orleans can furnish few instances of such wide-spread gloom and depression as that exhibited yesterday. The closing of places of business was almost universal, and altogether unprecedented. Considering the short time for preparation, the number of buildings draped with crape was little less than surprising. The display of flags and mourning drapery was too general to admit of particularization. There was scarcely a public office not thus mournfully adorned. Conspicuous among the private residences which were draped were those of Hon. J. Durant and Hon. T. P. May. The Catholic Church on Common Street, and the Charity Hospital, also displayed the emblems of mourning. Col. Saunders & Co., Camp Street, were not behind hand in the general display. The decorations at the National Bank and the United States Treasury Buildings were especially chaste and tasteful.
    The public schools were dismissed at an early hour, and thousands of children helped to make up the crowds which thronged the streets.

    [transcription by:
    Taylor Osborne]

  • Source

    Lincoln Financial Foundation Collection via The Internet Archive

  • Rights

    This item is in the public domain and may be reproduced and used for any purpose, including research, teaching, private study, publication, broadcast or commercial use, with proper citation and attribution.

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  • Cite this Item

    J.S. Whitaker. "Louisiana's tribute to the memory of Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States : public demonstration in the city of New Orleans, April 22, 1865 ; resolutions, speeches of Christian Roselius and others, etc., etc.". Picayune Office Job Print. Remembering Lincoln. Web. Accessed January 26, 2022. https://rememberinglincoln.fords.org/node/1192