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[227]

Now we know that the cause for which we fought, in a sense, is a lost cause. The formation of a separate Confederacy, bounded by the geographical boundaries of those States which attempted to establish it, has forever passed away. It would now be an anomaly; it would not receive the support of those who survive that war—the causes which made that geographical boundary important having passed away. When the surrender took place at Appomattox—when the greatest of modern soldiers laid down the noblest of modern swords—the hope of the South for a separate independence was forever ended. How far the matters involved in that controversy passed away in that surrender may become a matter of dispute. What loss was involved in it, what was the permanent element therein, are matters to which we may revert for discussion.

All of us will admit that the problem of African slavery changed its form as a result of that war. The equality of man was derived from that fundamental principle enunciated by Jefferson, that all men were created free and equal by the Almighty Jehovah; free, because the Son of God could not be a slave to any one; equal, because there could be no superior to the Son of God. That the problem of the African race, in accordance with constitutional amendments founded upon this great truth, has changed its form, no one will undertake to deny or dispute. The problem has not passed away; the race is still here; the essence of the problem remains with us and our children. It is still with us—on our consciences and patriotism and philanthropy. The permanent element of the problem cannot in our generation cease to be of the utmost importance.

The relation of the States to the general government—that delicate adjustment of the right of local self-government with the broader powers of the Federal government—can never cease to be prominent in our country, How it is that States can be united under a form of government so flexible that all local matters can be determined by those living within the territorial boundaries of each State, and yet all dwell together within the same union, is a problem that had not known solution in the world. Our children will have their questions to solve and their duties to perform, as our fathers had and as we have had; and with the Dominion of Canada on the north and and the Republic of Mexico on the south, all of which is to be ours, and with four hundred millions of Orientals across the ocean, there will have to be a delicate readjustment of that great problem of all the ages, as to how we can retain local self-government absolutely, and yet give to

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