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[9] aggression, a calculating, comprehensive treason, which Northern optimists were at first reluctant to admit. He saw that the laws of population and the irresistible opinion of the world forbade them from delaying an enterprise which their mad ambition had long before planned, and that all temporizing measures on our part would be idiotic and pusillanimous.

Accordingly, in that comedie larmoyante, created by crafty Virginia politicians, and misnamed the Peace Conference, upon whose doors should have been written Claudian's words,

Mars gravior sub pace latet,

Under the show of peace a sterner war lies hidden,

in that assembly, in which he took his seat on the 8th of February, 1861, he wasted no time in speeches, but constantly voted against all measures that seemed to jeopard the honor and independence of the loyal States. On the 17th of February, upon his motion, the delegation of New York virtually resolved to vote ‘No’ upon the chief sections of the report of the committee which summed up the action of the Conference; and the State of New York was spared the mortification of assenting to overtures which weakened the position of the North, while they failed to propitiate the Southern conspirators.

For the time was now at hand when the action of deliberative bodies was to be of no account, and the safety of the nation to depend upon military measures alone. Fort Sumter was attacked and captured. The soldiers of Massachusetts were assaulted in the streets of Baltimore. The railroad communication with the capital was interrupted, and the supplies for the troops there were nearly cut off. In respect to this latter danger, the clear, practical mind of Wadsworth seized at once the difficulties of the situation, and devised the remedy. With great promptness and energy, he caused two vessels to be loaded at New York, on his own account, with provisions for the army, and accompanied them to Annapolis, attending personally to their delivery. During that interval of great

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