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 narration, let us sum up the hostile acts and usurpations committed during the first year. Our people had been declared to be combinations of insurrectionists, and more than one hundred fifty thousand men had been called to arms to invade our territory; our ports were blockaded for the destruction of our regular commerce, and we had been threatened with denunciation as pirates if we molested a vessel of the United States, and some of our citizens had been confined in cells to await the punishment of piracy; one of our states was rent asunder and a new state constructed out of the fragment; every proposition for a peaceful solution of pending issues had been spurned. An indiscriminate warfare had been waged upon our peaceful citizens, their dwellings burned and their crops destroyed; a law had been passed imposing a penalty of forfeiture on the owner of any faithful slave who gave military or naval service to the Confederacy, and forbidding military commanders to interfere for the restoration of fugitives; the United States government had refused to agree to an exchange of prisoners, and suffered those we had captured to languish in captivity; it had falsely represented us in every court of Europe, to defeat our efforts to obtain a recognition from foreign powers; it had seized a portion of the members of the legislature of one state and confined them in a distant military prison, because they were thought merely to sympathize with us, though they had not committed an overt act; it had refused all the propositions of another state for a peaceful neutrality, invaded her and seized important positions, where not even a disturbance of the peace had occurred, and perpetrated the most despotic outrages on her people; it rejected the most conciliatory terms offered for the sake of peace by the governor of another state, claimed for itself an unrestricted right to move and station its troops whenever and wherever its officers might think it to be desirable, and persisted in its aggressions until the people were involved in conflicts and a provisional government became necessary for their protection. Within the Northern states, which professed to be struggling to maintain the Union, the Constitution, its only bond, and the laws made in pursuance of it, were in peaceful, undisputed existence; yet even there the government ruled with the tyrant's hand, and the provisions for the freedom of speech, freedom of the press, and the personal liberty of the citizen were daily violated, and these sacred rights of man suppressed by military force. But some of these hostile actions require here a more specific consideration. They were the antecedents of oppressive measures which the enemy strove to enforce upon us during the entire war.
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