The order of Gen. Halleck referred to in an article yesterday — the order in regard to the exclusion of fugitive slaves from the camps and lines of the army — is in substance identical with the recent proclamation of Gen. Dix to the peo[ple] of Accomac and Northampton counties, Virginia. Gen. Dix used the following language:
"The military forces of the United States are about to enter your countries as a part of the Union. They will go among you as friends, and with the earnest hope that they may not by your own acts, by forced to become your enemies. They will invade no rights of person or property: on the contrary, your laws, your institutions, your usages, will be scrupulously respected. There need be no fear that the quietude of any fireside will be disturbed, unless the disturbance is caused by yourselves. Special directions have been given not to interfere with the condition of any persons held to domestic service, and in order that there may be no ground for mistake or pretext for misrepresentation, commanders of regiments and corps have been instructed not to permit any such persons to come within their lines."
Here is a simple plan to avoid all trouble on the vexed question of fugitive slaves. It means that the war is not waged to interfere with the domestic institutions of the south, or to irritate and alarm the people who are interested in a certain kind of property. Herein it conforms to the spirit of the policy adopted by congress, and to every authoritative exposition of the wishes of the president. It says that the purpose of this war is not to break up relations grounded in custom or recognized by the laws, but merely to restore peace under the dignity and sovereignty of the federal government, and to renew a common intercourse between the whole people of the country. Such a policy, ignores the entire question of the right or wrong of slavery, and holds all disputes thereon in abeyance. It is a policy in which all loyal people can conscientiously unite, if disposed to banish partisanship in the overshadowing struggle for national existence.
There are men who have gone into this bitter and unfortunate contest with the sole impulse and motive of seeing the Union re-instated and perpetuated. We rest in the belief that these constitute a very large majority of professedly loyal men. But there are others who care nothing for the Union unless emancipation goes with it. In a speech delivered this month by General James S. Lane he said: "So far as I am concerned, I hope the Almighty will so direct the hearts of the rebels that, like Pharaoh, they will persist in their crimes, and then we will invade them, and strike the shackles from every limb" The insincerity of such Union principles is apparent, but we rejoice that doctrines like this find no echo in the breasts of the mass of the American people. — St. Louis Republican.