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“ [128] it be prudent, safe, or manly in the South to submit to the domination of a party whose declared purpose is to destroy such an amount of property and subvert our whole social and industrial policy?”

In a subsequent part of your letter you call my attention to certain grievances endured by the South, and conclude your commentary thereon as follows, viz.:

Is it wise, if we do not intend to submit to such consequences, to allow a black republican President to be inaugurated, and put him in possession of the army, the navy, the treasury, the armories and arsenals, the public property — in fact, the whole machinery of the Government, with its appendants and appurtenances? If the South should think upon this subject as I do, no black republican President should ever execute any law within her borders, unless at the point of the bayonet, and over the dead bodies of her slain sons.

I shudder at such sentiments coming from one whose sincerity I cannot doubt. The time was when 150,000 men tendered their services to the President to aid him, if necessary, in executing the laws of the United States; the time will be when 200,000 will volunteer for a like purpose, should resistance be made to his legitimate authority, no matter by what party he may be elected.

There seems to me to be, in the course recommended to the South, in the event of Mr. Lincoln's election to the presidency, a fatuity little short of madness. Would you pull down the canopy of heaven because wrong and crime exist beneath it? Would you break up the earth on which we tread because earthquakes sometimes heave it and pestilence walks its surface? This Union, sir, is too precious to the people it protects, North and South, East and West, to be broken up, even should a black republican be elected President next November. Should the attempt be made, a united North, and three-fourths of a divided South, would spring to the rescue. No, no, the remedy for the evils of which you justly complain are to be found within the Union, and not among its bloody ruins.

I admit that the grievances which you enumerate are hard to be borne; but a few Southern men are not without responsibility for their existence. The general sentiment of the country, North and South, at the close of the Revolutionary War was anti-slavery. It has changed in the South, but remains unchanged in the North. There, however, it has been roused to unwonted activity by the preachings of fanatics and the denunciations of political demagogues, aided not a little by the arts, the language, and the violence of Southern disunionists.

It is needless to give in detail all the causes which have brought the politics of the country to their present deplorable condition. Suffice it to say that you have long had in the South a small party of able men whose aim has been to destroy the Union; that, as a preliminary to their main design, they have sought to break up the democratic party; that their means for accomplishing this end were to act with it, and force upon it every possible issue obnoxious to the general sentiment of the North; that they have dragged after then the true Union men of the South, partly through their fears of being considered laggard in their devotion to Southern interests, and partly through ambition for political distinction; to make the democratic party as odious as possible at the North, they became the advocates of slavery on principle, justified the African slave trade, and denounced the laws prohibiting it. By these acts, and frequent threats of disunion, they enabled the enemies of democracy in the North to denounce them as pro-slavery men, and to all this they added occasional taunts that they were no more to be relied upon for the protection of Southern rights than their opponents. By these means the democratic party was reduced before the last presidential election to a minority in most of the Northern states, and in the residue had the utmost difficulty in maintaining their ascendency. In the mean time, the union men in the South had measurably ceased to consider the democratic party as friendly to the Union; and the union sentiment in the border slave States, whose interest in its preservation is preeminent, sought expression through the American party. To such an extent had the democratic party been weakened by the insidious policy of their disunion allies, that they had the utmost difficulty in electing an old practical statesman over a young man who had nothing to recomend him beyond a few successful explorations of our wilderness territory.

There were those who foresaw that longer affiliation with Southern disunionists would inevitably destroy the ascendency of the democratic party, and a feeble and fruitless effort was made to induce the President to lay the foundations of his administration on the rock of the Union, and cut loose from those who were seeking to destroy it. For reasons, no doubt patriotic, but to me inexplicable, the reverse of that policy was pursued. The support of the Lecompton constitution, which the country generally believed to be a fraud, was made the test of democracy; one leading democrat after another was proscribed because they would not submit to the test, and, as if to deprive Northern democrats of the last hope of successfully vindicating the rights of the South, an act of Congress was passed for the admission of Kansas into the Union at once, provided she would consent to become a slaveholding State, but postponing her admission indefinitely if she refused.

In your published letter you justly condemn the seceders from the Charleston convention, who, you think, ought to have remained, and prevented the nomination of a candidate who is obnoxious to the South. Do you not perceive, sir, that the secession was a part of the programme for breaking up the democratic

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