The Civil War in North Carolina



Reminiscences and Memoirs of North Carolina and Eminent North Carolinians

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by a cabinet appointment, but when it has it was the Navy Department.

        It is also singular that the cabinet of Pierce, which has had no superior in the history of the republic for integrity, ability, or usefulness, is the only cabinet that ever existed, in which there was, during its legal existence, perfect integrity, with our resignation or change. These distinguished men seemed to be as united in their social and official relations, as they were for the welfare and honor of their country.

        This terminated, the public life of Mr. Dobbin, a career so brilliant and yet so short.

        In private life his character exhibited itself still more lovely. As a son, he was obedient and docile; as a husband, tender; as a father, provident and affectionate, and as a friend sincere, frank, and unselfish.

        I trust it will not be deemed ostentatious when I say of Mr. Dobbin, as did Anthony of Csar: "He was my friend, faithful and just, to me" earnest and sincere. He sustained my course, when absent from the country under peculiar circumstances, when assailed by prejudice and sectional jealousy. I allude to the course pursued by me in Central America. To the last hour of his life he continued his kindly offices.

        As I was leaving the country, I received the following letter, which better expresses his friendship and generous, noble nature than any possible language of mine:

"WASHINGTON, October 3rd, 1854.

"DEAR WHEELER:

        "The beautiful painting has arrived, and shall conspicuously adorn my parlor.

        "I prize it highly. It is the picture of the beloved Washington. It is one of 'Sully's' paintings too. It comes to me from the warm heart of a true friend, and thereby seems to have borrowed a richer touch, which lends it additional beauty.

        "I shall remember you, when you are far, far away; and when you return, and see my little folks, tell them how warm was the friendship between yourself and their father, whose life was so hopeful and yet so short.

        "Should, however, the scene be changed and otherwise, let your better-half and your boys know that Mr. Dobbin is one that they may approach and find their steady friend. But perhaps we may meet in years to come, and then what friendly chats, Shakespeare, politics. Good-bye. God preserve and bless you,

"JAMES C. DOBBIN."


        But if the life of Mr. Dobbin was one continued exercise of the noblest functions of our nature, and his career as short as it was brilliant, it was eclipsed by the sublime manner of his death.

        His health never strong, was exhausted by his official labors at Washington, and he returned home only to die. We are informed by Rev. Mr. Gilchrist, who was with him in his last moments, that Mr. Dobbin was conscious for some time of his approaching dissolution, and when the icy hand of death touched his heart, he did not shrink from its approach but calmly bade his little children and his weeping friends adieu; and with fixed hands, composing himself in his bed, he was heard to whisper, "praise the Lord, oh my soul!" and with these words his spirit departed.


                         "----Sure the last end
                         Of the good man is peace! How calm his exit;
                         Night dews fall not more gently to the ground
                         Nor weary worn to winds expire more soft."

        Mr. Dobbin left three children; two sons, both since dead, and a daughter. The sad fate of his brother, John V. Dobbin, who perished at sea, in the steam ship Central America, has already been alluded to. (See Beaufort County.)

        Warren Winslow, born 1810, died 1862, was born, lived and died in Fayetteville. He was educated at the University of North Carolina, and graduated in 1827, in same class with Judge A. O. P. Nicholson, of Tennessee, Charles B. Shephard, Lewis Thompson and others.

        He studied law, and entered public life as senator in the state legislature the same year, (1854,) and was chosen speaker. In the election
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