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In a letter to Governor Pratt, he declined at that time to convene the legislature, because he was in correspondence with the governors of Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia, and North Carolina, as to the best means of preserving the rights of the South, and at the same time most solemnly asseverated his entire devotion to the South, calling God to witness that he would be first to shoulder his musket to protect the South from invasion.

A large body of the people believed his professions, and indeed it was difficult to make them appreciate treachery so great. He was a slaveholder himself, born and living in a slaveholding county, and in old party times had always acted with that wing of the Whig party, which had been intensely Southern in its views and acts. But the revolution moved on, and the people became impatient at his inaction.

They insisted that their representatives should meet, so as to act for them as occasion might require. If Virginia seceded, then to join Maryland to Virginia in one common destiny, for weal or for woe. If the Middle States submitted, then to place Maryland side by side with them in protecting the Gulf States from war.

With this view, St. Mary's and Charles counties provided for elections of delegates to a sovereign convention to take place in January. Frederick held a meeting on the 8th, issued an address, calling the convention for the 22d February, and elected delegates to it.

The lead was followed, and on the 22d February that body met in Baltimore city, composed of the best men of the State--without regard to old party lines. But its action was trammelled. Hicks was out in another publication, most solemnly avowing his devotion to the South, and his fixed determination never to allow the soil of Maryland to be polluted by the tread of northern soldiers marching against the South.

The Middle States had not moved. Indeed, so far as Virginia had expressed an opinion or taken a position, through her convention then in session at Richmond, it had been against the acts of the Cotton States. Nothing could be done but to watch and wait. The convention therefore appointed commissioners to proceed to Richmond to learn, if possible, the probable action of Virginia and report to an adjourned meeting to be held in Baltimore on the 15th March, proximo.

On that day the body convened again, but the conference with Virginia had led to nothing. No one in Richmond was able to indicate the future action of the State, but as far as could be gathered it seemed probable that the convention would submit to Lincoln, while the people would resist, and thus involve the State at once in revolution and civil

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