Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln. Volume 8.
Lincoln, Abraham, 1809-1865.

To Winfield Scott and Others [1]

Gentlemen: March 1, 1865

I have received your address on the part of the Bureau for the employment of disabled and discharged soldiers which has recently been established in connection with the Protective War Claim Association of the Sanitary Commission.

It gives me pleasure to assure you of my hearty concurrence with the purposes you announce, and I shall at all times be ready to recognize the paramount claims of the soldiers of the nation, in the disposition of public trusts. I shall be glad also to make these suggestions to the several Heads of Departments. I am very truly Your Obt. Servt A. LINCOLN

Lt. Gen Winfield Scott Presdt

Howard Potter

W E Dodge Jr

Theodore Roosevelt

Annotation

[1]   Df, DLC-RTL. The draft is in John Hay's handwriting. On January 24, 1865, Theodore Roosevelt, Sr., wrote John G. Nicolay, enclosing a letter signed by General Winfield Scott and others, dated January 17:

``We address you on the part of the Bureau for the employment of disabled and discharged Soldiers which has recently been established in connection with this association

``The promise of employment which a large City is supposed to hold out, & other influences, have operated to congregate in this City many of that class, whose condition is such as to challenge immediate attention to their claims to employment & support, & it is our desire to find ways of satisfying those claims which shall not compromise the self-respect & independence of men who, having done and suffered so much for the country, should be considered by all her citizens as having a preferred claim to such employments as they are still fit for.

``This preference . . . cannot of course be secured to them by legislation, but we think much may be done towards educating public sentiment to that end ifPage  328 the Government would set the example of conferring upon these . . . veterans such offices within its gift, as they might be found qualified to fill, &, if your Excellency approve the plan, we would ask of you such instructions to the Heads of the Several Departments . . . as may serve that purpose. . . .'' (DLC-RTL).