Skip Maine state header navigation

Agencies | Online Services | Help

Skip First Level Navigation | Skip All Navigation

Home > Civil War Sesquicentennial > John A. Peters Transcript

John A. Peters Transcript

Bangor, April 13, 1864

Bro. John,

Yours of the 11th is received.  The question you ask shows the folly of that bounty bill.  I told them so and they wouldn’t listen. The rumor about the small & poor towns did it. Demagogueism did it. But I didn’t suppose you would pay a vast attention to it.  The military is superior to the civil.  Inter arma leges silent.

About a soldier’s residence, where is it? It is any where he pleases. Any man can make his own residence where he pleases, and it takes only a moment to make it, if it is actual. He can reside in Brewer today & tomorrow in Bangor.  Residence is not settlement. Five years residence is a settlement. A man can make a new residence for the purpose of enlisting, just as much as he can make a residence in a new town for the purpose of practicing law, selling merchandise, or the like. A town has no hold on a man because he has residence in such town, and does not now reside there.

Your question answers itself:  a man living in a town where its Octo. quota is not full, if the town won’t have him, cannot be enlisted under the $300 bounty.  You must see the quota full; or you must reside him somewhere else; or you cannot have him. Towns should fill their old quotas, but it would have been well to have left some discretion with your department. Not having done so, I would take some discretion in cases the most imperative.

Yours truly,
J.A. Peters