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The South and the Union—its battles.

Pause, now, upon the threshold, and geography and history will alike tell you that neither in its people nor in its leader was there lack of love for the Union, and that it was with sad hearts that they saw its ligaments torn asunder. Look at the Southern map. There may be read the name of Alamance, where in 1771 the first drop of American blood was shed against arbitrary taxation, and at Mecklenburg, where was sounded the first note of Independence. Before the Declaration at Philadelphia there had risen in the Southern sky what Bancroft termed ‘the bright morning star of American Independence,’ where, on the 28th of June, 1776, the guns of Moultrie at the Palmetto fort in front of Charleston announced the first victory of American arms. At King's Mountain is the spot where the rough-and-ready men of the Carolinas and the swift riders of Virginia and Tennessee had turned the tide of victory in our favor, and there at Yorktown is the true birth spot of the free nation. Right here I stand to-night on the soil of that State which first of all America stood alone free and independent? Beyond the confines of the South her sons had rendered yeoman service; and would not the step of the British conqueror have been scarce less than omnipotent had not Morgan's riflemen from the Valley of Virginia and the peerless commander of Mt. Vernon appeared on the plains of Boston? You may follow the tracks of the Continentals at Long Island, Trenton, Princeton, Brandywine, Germantown, Valley Forge, Monmouth and Morristown by the blood and the graves of the Southern men who died on Northern soil, far away from their homes, answering the question with their lives: Did the South love the Union?

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