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[235] required of us a different mode of life, and we have adapted ourselves to that change. Before the war there was but one South. It was an agricultural South. It was diverse in its agriculture, for the wheat and tobacco grower of Virginia was materially different from the cotton producer of the Mississippi Valley, and the raiser of stock in the blue-grass land was different from the tobacco grower and the cotton producer; but all were agricultural. The war changed all this. We have in the last year produced nine million bales of cotton, so that you may see that the agricultural South has not gone back; but we have also gone into new industries, and have shown that the ex-Confederate is competent for the discharge of any industrial duty. The great Appalachian range, whose bosom has been throbbing with eager and expectant yearning that we might obtain its riches, is now being turned into wealth by the ex-Confederates. You come to Richmond and you find a new Richmond, in the sense that her streets have lengthened, her buildings are more stately, and her bank accounts have grown larger; your sons are mining engineers, or chemists, or railroad kings. And so with Nashville, or Mobile, or Savannah.

The old South of Richmond and Charleston and Mobile in a certain sense has passed away. No longer do the men merely talk of crops or politics, but we are the same old South in the sense that we are the same men. It is not a new South in the idea that it is inhabited by a new race of men; no more is that true than that we are new men ourselves. Our sons, who will not own large plantations, but will manage great railroads and be masters of industrial occupations, will have liberty, and preserve its principles for their posterity as their fathers did. And today, if there were a necessity for it, Virginia would step to the front, not under new men in the sense that they came from the North or are foreigners, but only new men in the sense that they came from our loins fitted for the day in which they were born.

And this is what we have done in these twenty-seven years; we have preserved, in the form in which they were handed down to us, and as sacredly as our fathers ever did, the principles of constitutional liberty—principles not only of constitutional liberty, but principles which are a part of all constitutions. For liberty was before the constitution—it created the constitution and is its animating spirit. We are not the creatures of the law, but its creators, and this we must always bear in mind.

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