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General Orders, No. 141 (U.S. War Department)

September 25, 1862

On September 25, 1862, the U.S. War Department issued General Orders, No. 141, announcing President Abraham Lincoln's proclamation suspending the writ of habeas corpus for people in rebellion against the United States.

General Orders, No. 141

War Dep't, Adjutant General's Office

Washington, September 25, 1862

The following Proclamation by the President is published for the information and government of the Army and all concerned:



"Whereas it has become necessary to call into service not only Volunteers but also portions of the Militia of the States by draft, in order to suppress the insurrection existing in the United States, and disloyal persons are not adequately restrained by the ordinary processes of law from hindering this measure and from giving aid and comfort in various ways to the insurrection:

Now, therefore, be it ordered —

First. That during the existing insurrection, and as a necessary measure for suppressing the same, all rebels and insurgents, their aiders and abettors, within the United States, and all persons discouraging volunteer enlistments, resisting militia drafts, or guilty of any disloyal practice, affording aid and comfort to rebels against the authority of the United States, shall be subject to martial law, and liable to trial and punishment by courts-martial or military commission.

Second. That the writ of habeas corpus is suspended in respect to all persons arrested, or who are now, or hereafter during the rebellion shall be, imprisoned in any fort, camp, arsenal, military prison, or other place of confinement by any military authority, or by the sentence of any court-martial or military commission.

In witness whereof, I have hereunto set my hand, and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed.

Done at the city of Washington, this twenty-fourth day of September, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-two, [L. S.]and of the Independence of the United States the eighty-seventh.


By the President:

William H. Seward,

Secretary of State.

By Order Of The Secretary Of War:


Adjutant General


Assistant Adjutant General


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