LINCOLN, ABRAHAM, President. Partly printed document signed ("Abraham Lincoln") as President, Washington, D.C., 7 July 1863. 1 page, 4to, integral blank, accomplished in manuscript, large papered Great Seal of the United States at left, small spot (partly affecting "L" of signature), minor fold wear.
THE DRAFT CALL WHICH SET OFF THE NEW YORK CITY DRAFT RIOTS
The first draft call on the state of New York under the new conscription act of Congress: "I, Abraham Lincoln...having taken into consideration the number of volunteers and militia since the commencement of the present rebellion...do hereby assign [1,767] as the first proportional part of the quota of troops to be furnished by the 29th District of the State of New York under this, the first call made by me on the State of New York..."
In July, when New York City's provost marshall began to select names in response to the government's draft call, resistance sparked the worst civil disorder of the war. Unruly mobs of young men terrorized the city, "...killing, looting and burning. Negroes and Horace Greeley were the special objects of their hatred; they burned a Negro orphan asylum and stoned the offices of the New York Tribune. Federal troops, militia, police, naval personnel, and a company from West Point quelled the disturbances. About 117 people were killed" (Neely, The Abraham Lincoln Encyclopedia, New York: McGraw-Hill, 1982, pp. 69-70). Although New York Governor Horatio Seymour urged Lincoln to suspend the draft in New York, Lincoln refused and the calls resumed in August without incident.