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Page 261 of Novels, stories, sketches, and poems of Thomas Nelson Page (vol. 18)

THE CONFEDERATE GOVERNMENT Davis's friends, and one of the historians of the time states that on the final passage of the bill fourteen of the President's friends voted against it, and that Mrs. Davis declared that had she been in the President's place, before she would have submitted to the humiliation of being de- prived of her rights in this matter she would have been hanged. Another difficulty, however, stood in the way. Lee himself had declared that he would not accept the position in opposition to Mr. Davis, but only at his hands. The phrase in his first general order to his armies is signifi- cant of his point of view: HEAD-QUARTERS CONFEDERATE ARMY, February 9, 1865. General Order No. 1. In obedience to General Order No. 3 . . . I assume command of the mili- tary forces of the Confederate States.... Longstreet declares his astonishment at Lee's failure to exercise the enormous powers now vested in him. But it was too late now for any exercise of power to have changed the issue. Fortunately for Lee, the relations between him and the President of the Confederacy were ever of the most cordial kind. They had known each McCabe's "Life of General Ri. E. Lee." 261

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