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[20] against him, to have a compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the assistance of counsel for his defence.

He, and his Cabinet, have seized large numbers of our citizens; withdrawn them from their homes, their families and their business; cast them into loathsome prisons; refused to inform them of the cause and nature of the accusation against them; denied to them the right and opportunity of consultation with friends or counsel, and have withheld from them a speedy and public trial by an impartial jury. They would neither confront them with the witnesses against them, nor could they allow them to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in their favor.

The conduct of President Lincoln has been as oppressive and tyrannical, towards the Confederate States, as the acts of the King of Great Britain, which caused our first Revolution, were toward the colonies. The comparison cannot fail to make its impression upon the mind even of the casual observer.

President Lincoln has plundered the public treasury, and has delivered at least forty thousand dollars to Pierpoint, to enable him, and his traitorous associates in the Commonwealth of Virginia, to overthrow the State government, and to organize, within the limits of this State, a new government. He has thus been guilty of the unprincipled conduct of using the people's money to lavish upon traitors, and encourage them to perseverance in their work of treason.

“The history” of Abraham Lincoln “is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having for their object the establishment of an absolute tyranny over these” Confederate States.

To this end “he has affected to render the military independent of and superior to the civil power.”

He has combined with Pierpont, and other traitors in Virginia, “to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution and unacknowledged by our laws, giving his assent to their acts of pretended legislation.”

He is endeavoring to quarter “large bodies of armed troops amongst us.”

He is endeavoring to cut off “our trade with all parts of the world.”

He is endeavoring to impose “taxes upon us without our consent.”

He is endeavoring to deprive us, “in many cases, of the benefits of trial by jury.”

“ He has abdicated government here by declaring us out of his protection and waging war against us.”

“He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burned our towns and destroyed the lives of our people.”

“He is at this time transporting large bodies of mercenaries to complete the works of death, desolation and tyranny already begun with circumstances of cruelty and perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the head of a civilized nation.”

He has endeavored to excite domestic insurrections amongst us by proposing to put arms in the hands of our slaves, and thereby encouraging them to “an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.”

He has violated laws human and divine, to gratify his passions, to glut his prejudices, and to wreak his vengeance upon a people who ask only their rights, and who are struggling to preserve their liberties. Can a government, conducted upon such principles, endure?

In every stage of these oppressions, attempted or consummated, prior to the secession of the State, we warned President Lincoln, and the Northern people, of the inevitable consequences of their course, and admonished them that, if justice was not accorded to us, the Union must be dissolved. In every state of these oppressions, since the secession of the State, we have resisted them as became a free people asserting independence. Our admonitions and resistance have been answered by repeated injury and oppression, aggravated by war and bloodshed, and by the assumption and exercise of power, which even an autocrat would hesitate to assume and exercise. A President “whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a tyrant is unfit to be a ruler of a free people.”

I have thus presented:

1. The considerations that influenced and controlled the action of Virginia in separating herself from the government of the United States, and resuming her sovereignty.

2. The results which President Lincoln's policy gave us fearful reason to apprehend, and which are now matters of history stamped indelibly upon its pages. In these I enumerate its repeated violations of a constitution which he had solemnly sworn to support.

3. I have run a parallel between the conduct of President Lincoln and George the Third, and have demonstrated that the former has shown himself not less a tyrant and usurper than the latter.

The Constitution of the United States has had no binding efficacy upon us since the 17th day of April last. On that day we repudiated it, and declared to the world that we would not be longer bound by its provisions. From that day Virginia dates a new era. Her own constitution, her laws, and her ordinances constituted the rule for her guidance from that day forward, until her union with the Confederate States was consummated. While she occupied a position as an independent State, she deported herself with the grace and dignity that became “the Mother of States;” after her Union with the Confederate government, she fulfilled her obligations faithfully in her new relation.

The occurrences of the past nine months have demonstrated conclusively, that we cannot live together as equals under the Government of the United States; and the habitual violation of the provisions of the Constitution, and the open disregard of the laws by President Lincoln and his officials, render governmental association between us impossible. Mutual respect between the citizens of the Southern Confederacy and those of the


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