President Lincoln calls for 75,000 troops to suppress the Rebellion and enforce United States law

Abraham Lincoln, May 16, 1861, Brady image, detail
President Lincoln, responding to the firing on Fort Sumter, issued a proclamation calling for "the militia of the several States of the Union, to the aggregate number of seventy-five thousand ... to cause the laws to be duly executed." Their first duty would be to "re-possess the forts, places, and property which have been seized from the Union."  The statement also ordered a special session of both houses of congress to convene at noon on July 4, 1861.  (By John Osborne)
Source Citation
 
Abraham Lincoln, Abraham Lincoln Association, Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln, Volume 4 (New Brunswick, N.J: Rutgers University Press, 1953), 332-333