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 in the American Union. When conquered they become provinces. If we had come back by compulsion as conquered States, the Union of States could not have been restored. It was a result of the war, as binding on the Federal Government as on the seceding States, that when they returned to the Union they should come back to the same position they had attempted to resign. When this result was achieved, and the Union was re-established by war, and was found to be perfect in every respect, as it had been before the war, without a State missing or destroyed, or impaired in its rights, a great pledge was maintained, a great victory had been gained. A restoration had been accomplished which aroused the triumphant enthusiasm of those who believed that they had saved the Union, and left a lighter burden of regret upon the hearts of the vanquished. The States came forth from the hideous night of civil war, as the stars appear after the storms have swept the heavens. The admiration of the civilized nations of the world was excited to the highest degree at the inherent power and indestructibilty of our free constitutional Government. When it was rent with the secession of nearly half of its entire territory, strained to the uttermost in every possible resource, with more dead and wounded fallen from the ranks of its armies than the entire number of its armed foes, the monarchical powers recalled a jeering prophecy of a hundred years ago. But when peace was restored, and they saw it readjusting the nice and delicate relations between States and people, so that not a flaw or blemish or imperfection was discernible, not a scar was seen on the body politic, they felt that their prophecy had been unjust towards the millions of our race, who have for so many centuries aspired to the blessings of liberty regulated by constitutional law. And when they saw it at last rising proudly from the struggle, strengthened by its trials and ennobled and purified by its efforts to preserve its organism in the exact form and proportions in which our fathers had given it to the people, they realized a fact, that was not too dearly established even through the horrors of civil war, that constitutional liberty based on the sovereignty of the people, is a stronger and more enduring power than any royal dynasty, or any form of monarchical government. Those who were vanquished had always believed that this form of government was the best. When they separated from the other States they adopted the Constitution of the United States, without any essential change of its form or principles, as their plan of government. Although they had seceded from the Union they proved, by their adoption of this form of government, that their quarrel had not been with the Constitution or the form of our Government, but with a system of constructions which they believed were subversive of them. Measures had
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