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[469] should at least expect Virginia to say, “Form your Confederacy, and we will see that you are not molested by a foe that should reach you across our territory.” Cradle of the Confederacy, p. 390. During the summer he agitated for a ‘League of United Southerners,’ and publicly discussed the probable course of the1 movement for a Confederacy when once initiated. On November 11, at Jackson, Miss., Jefferson Davis—disregarding the lines of demarcation which Union-saving2 Republicans ostentatiously drew between themselves and the Garrisonians—said the question of disunion would arise ‘if an Abolitionist be chosen President of the United States.’ He entreated Mississippi to make ready for the contest, and alter over its old arms. He reported having heard President Pierce say that when a Northern army should go to subjugate the South, its first fighting would be done on Northern soil.3

Davis took for his text the famous speech of Senator Seward at Rochester, N. Y., on October 25, 1858; in which4 the latter foretold the supplanting of the Democratic Party in power by the Republican, and gave universal currency in a happy phrase to the old abolition view of5 the existing ‘Union’:

Shall I tell you what this collision [of two antagonistic6 systeams continually coming into closer contact] means? They who think that it is accidental, unnecessary, the work of interested or fanatical agitators, and therefore ephemeral, mistake the case altogether. It is an irrepressible conflict between opposing and enduring forces, and it means that the United States must and will, sooner or later, become either entirely a slaveholding nation, or entirely a free-labor nation. Either the cotton and rice fields of South Carolina and the sugar plantations of Louisiana will ultimately be tilled by free labor, and Charleston and New Orleans become marts for legitimate merchandise alone, or else the rye-fields and wheat-fields of Massachusetts and New York must again be surrendered by their farmers to slave culture and to the production of slaves, and Boston and

1 Ibid., p. 395.

2 Lib. 28.193; 30.17.

3 Compare a like warning on the part of Pierce's Attorney-General, Caleb Cushing, in Faneuil Hall, Dec. 9, 1859, in case his fellow-citizens of Massachusetts embarked in ‘a war of invasion [of the South] for the destruction of the Union and the Government of the Union’ (Lib. 29: 197).

4 Lib. 28.177.

5 Ante, 2.338.

6 Lib. 28.177.

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