The surrender at Appomattox Court House, April 9, 1865, of our noble chieftain, Robert E. Lee
, the incorruptible patriot and brave defender of his country's rights, soon followed by the surrender of that faithful, devoted patriot and grand hero, Joseph E. Johnston
, was the death-knell to our long-cherished hopes and sealed the fate of the Southern Confederacy.
As a proud and honorable people we accepted the arbitration of our leaders and, as heaven willed, resigned ourselves to the inevitable.
When the banner of the Confederacy
was furled and the terms of peace had been accepted, the summons came for own heroic soldiers to assemble in their respective districts to be paroled.
It was a bitter trial to these dauntless men to accept a situation so hard to realize; but with proud consciousness of having done their duty they laid down their arms, received their parole, bade farewell to their brave companions in arms and returned to the enjoyment once more of the endearments of home, beguiled by the hope that peace was restored.
Alas! how evanescent so blissful a dream!
Owing to the lamentable death of our patriotic governor, John Milton
, Gen. A. K. Allison
, president of the senate, filled the executive chair for a short time.
The Hon. William Marvin
was made provisional governor, and held the office, by appointment of the president of the United States
, until the winter of 1865, when we were granted the privilege of an election by the people for our State officers.
One of our supreme judges, David S. Walker
, by the unanimous voice of a proud constituency, was made governor.
Not long, a little over two years, were we permitted to enjoy the blessings of his wise and peaceful administration.
The red planet Mars
was still in the ascendant, and eclipsed the pure lambent light of the beauteous star of peace.
Our courtly governor was deposed by order of a military satrap, and a new regime established, most destructive to our prosperity and inexpressibly galling to the proud spirit of our citizens ‘to the manor born.’