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Innate force of the South.

It is amusing to hear the surprise constantly manifested by Northern visitors at the development and progress of the South, and more amusing to hear it so complacently attributed to Northern energy and enterprise. They are wrong and they are right. They are wrong, for it is Southern brains and muscle, energy and enterprise, which is building up the South. They are right, because they themselves developed and made necessary the qualities in the South which are accomplishing these results. Their war, their reconstruction, their effort to subvert society and put the bottom rail on top, have welded us into a solid mass and aroused energies unknown that will beat them in the struggle for material development and ideas that will govern this Republic as long as it lasts.

But we are in greater danger now than we ever were from McClellan or Hooker, Pope or Grant.

Material development is progressing with constantly accelerating force. Wealth is accumulating. Booms, plutocracy, worship of money, are all impressing the doctrine that the end justifies the means, and that success is the highest duty, and our danger is that the very civilization of industrialism which we spent so much blood and so many lives to resist may at last overwhelm the institutions of our ancestors and the principles which we have inherited.

But I have no fear. Institutions are stronger than constitutions; race instincts and the law of heredity prevail over social and political revolutions. The institution of the Confederates—respect for honor and veracity in man, love and purity in woman—are more deeply planted to-day than they have ever been. They withstand the strain of wealth and luxury, self-indulgence and selfishness longer than any other society. Whether they can always survive the progress of the civilization of industrialism no man can foresee; but this civilization may itself be crushed out and overthrown as those which have preceded it have been. The societies organized on the ideas of Brahma and of the Pharaohs have long since disintegrated, and no one can believe that the present condition is permanent.

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B. A. Pope (1)
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