Thursday, August 20, 1863

General Tuttle has gone home to Iowa to recover from the recent fighting. He has been nominated as governor of Iowa and I have urged him to accept:

HeadQuarters. 15th Army Corps
Camp on Big Black, August 20,1863

General J. W. Tuttle, Keokuk, Iowa

Dear General,
The receipt yesterday of a letter, you wrote me at Duckport, last April, when I was up at Haines Bluff, reminds me to write you a few words. General Buckland got here a few days after you left, and things move on quietly and well. So many Officers and men are still on furlough, that all we can attempt, is to keep our men in good health, and ready for the fall Campaign.

I see, you are nominated as a candidate for Governor of Iowa. Permit me to advise you to accept it. You will, I think pardon my frankness, when I say, that I regard you as a fine, honest and fearless man, but your body has received some shock, that makes it painful for you to move about rapidly, and to that extent impairs your usefulness as a Soldier, who must have impulse, activity and a body, that delights in violent exercise.

I believe, you will make a good State Governor and that you could be a most excellent link in the chain of change or revolution, through which we are now passing.

Our country has always been, and it may be, always will be divided into two great parties, one in power, claiming everything allowed by the constitution and Laws, and the other denying them.

Every Government, whether democratic, republican or monarchical or despotic, must to a certain extent be alike. Each must have power enough to defend its existence. Now it has heretofore happened that all our people were so satisfied with our Government, that a comparatively small executive force could keep down all open enemies; but this is changed, and now it needs all the people to be organised and even armed to keep the Government from being overwhelmed by open Rebellion. We all know and feel, that if the loyal people of our Country from force of habit will still keep up their party organisations, and divide into two, nearly equal parts, that they may be defeated by a minority of the whole—or in other words—if the people of the North still insist on dividing into Republicans and Democrats, that the people of the South, though in vast minority, may still prevail, and acquire a certain Kind of independence; the result of which would be, as you know, an eternal Border War.

The War is not yet over. Much has been done, but you know enough of the character of the South to see, that the young hot-bloods have lost their negros, their lands and their boasted powers, on which they built their dreams of power and conquest, and they cannot settle back in peace.

The farmers and mechanics of the South now would vote for Peace, but the young-bloods, who have the control, wont let them. Instead of being divided ourselves, we should unite, and sow dissension among our enemies.

As long as they have hopes of division among us, they will be united as one man, but let us show them, that Democrats and Whigs and Republicans and Knownothings, and whatever party our People in their exuberance of freedom may choose to divide themselves—will drop all their seeming differences, when the life and integrity of the nation are threatened, and any quantity of disaffection and differences will display themselves South. To have peace and prosperity in the valley of the Mississippi, we must prevail, and we now have the cards to win—if we don t relax our efforts, and drop back into a state of security and lethargy.

We must now pile on our elements of strength. Ranks should be filled to the maximum, and as soon as the sun goes a little further South, our Armies should be seen at Natchitoches, Little Rock, Mobile, Montgomery and Chattanooga at the same time. This we cannot do with equal forces. You have seen how great results are accomplished in War by the mere display of Force. It is more honorable to produce results by an exhibition of Power, than by slaying thousands. Still, we have not yet killed enough, we must make this War so fatal and horrible, that a Century will pass, before new demagogues and traitors will dare to resort to violence and war, to achieve their ends.

I hope, that you will be a candidate, and that you will take the bold ground, that the people of Iowa must drop all their intestine differences, till the integrity and manhood of the United States are established beyond hope of disturbance by any of the enemies of Social Order and National fame that have assailed us from every quarter.

Your friend
W.T. Sherman, Major General

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