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[242] does not expire until March, 1863. I view, however, the relation of constituent and representative as one of confidence, and when I am satisfied that civil war cannot be averted, and find that the public sentiment of my State prefers such a result to the peaceful separation of those States which have withdrawn from the Union, I shall cheerfully and gladly resign into your hands an office which I obtained without solicitation, and which neither my sense of duty nor my self-respect would permit me to hold, when I ascertain that I differ in opinion with you on so momentous and vital a question as peace or war. It can require but few days after Congress has assembled to determine whether the last hope of peace has fled, if, indeed, the hope can linger until then; and before that time I shall become fully satisfied as to your will. Do not fear that I will betray the confidence you have reposed in me, or be capable of misrepresenting that will. If I cannot conscientiously obey your mandate, I will not use the position I occupy as your representative, to prevent its performance by another agent. But the right of private opinion and its expression, is a personal right, beyond public control. It is secured to every freeman under a government of laws, and a Republic must be a government of laws alone, or it will end in anarchy or despotism. I have no faith either in the government of the sword or the mob, and shall resist the establishment of either.

James A. Bayard. Wilmington, May 13, 1861.

--N. Y. Tribune, May 20.

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