of the State
, and good Southern men in the country districts.
They dwelt upon the danger that would result from secession and pleaded for delay, conciliation and compromise.
They were successful.
When the convention met the most remarkable thing about it was that there was not an avowed Secessionist among its members.
When the campaign opened Frank Blair
's Wide-awakes in St. Louis
were rapidly augmented in numbers—Eastern men supplying Blair
with money to organize and arm them—and assumed such an arrogant and threatening demeanor that Governor Jackson
was appealed to by quiet citizens for protection.
He had no authority to call out the militia when the legislature was in session, and referred the matter to that body.
The senate promptly, by a vote of 18 to 4, authorized him to call out the militia, but the house, notwithstanding the appeals of Vest
, refused to concur, and St. Louis
was terrorized into giving the combined Unconditional and Constitutional Union ticket a majority of 5,000.
Through the policy of violence and fraud in the larger towns, and of promises and false pretenses in the country districts, the State
declared against secession by a majority of 80,oo.
Nor was this all. The showing made by the unholy combination overthrew the secession majority in the lower house of the legislature, and blocked all legislation for putting the State
in a condition to protect herself.
The bill for organizing, arming and equipping the militia was under discussion in the house on the day of the election, and its advocates were confident of securing its passage, but the next day a number of members who had been clamorous for arming the State
refused to support the bill, claiming that the people had declared they did not want it to pass, and that in obedience to the wishes of their constituents they were constrained to oppose it.