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[40] their own colors—distorting it with their calumnies, their prejudices, and their passions, and it is this one-sided version of the conquerors that the world at large accept as the truth, for in history as in the present, ‘Voe Victis!’—woe to the conquered!

It is true that when we, the actors in the late contest, shall be sleeping in our graves little will it matter to us what the world may think of us or our motives. But methinks that we could hardly rest in peace, even in the tomb, should our descendants misjudge or condemn us. And yet, is there no possibility of this? They will be told that their fathers were oligarchs, aristocrats, slave drivers, rebels, traitors, who, to perpetuate the monstrous sin of human slavery, tried to throttle out the life of the nation, and to rend asunder the government founded by Washington; that they raised parricidal hands against the sacred ark of the Constitution; that they were the unprovoked aggressors, and struck the first sacrilegious blow against the Union and the flag of their country.

What if this be but false cant and calumny? Constant repetition will give it something of the authority of truth. We cannot doubt it. Our descendants will see these slanders repeated in Northern and probably in European publications—perhaps even in the very text-books of their schools (for unfortunately we Southerners write too little), and they may be compelled, like ourselves, to look abroad for their intellectual nutriment. It is true that our own immediate sons and daughters will not believe these falsifications of history, but perchance their children or grandchildren may believe them. And those who are still our enemies after five years of peace, rely confidently upon this result. A so-called minister of the Prince of Peace, but whose early and persistent advocacy of war and bloodshed prove that he obtained his commission from a very opposite quarter, has dared to say that ‘in a few years the relatives of those Southern men who fell in our struggle will be ashamed to be seen standing by the side of their dishonored graves.’ And he who said this, mark you, is no obscure driveller, but, on the contrary, one of the highest representative men of the North; one whom they delight to honor. No less a personage than the Rev. Henry Ward Beecher, who tendered his church as a shooting-gallery for bandits to acquire skill to murder Southern men in Kansas—Beecher, the abettor and panegyrist of John Brown, the chief of those bandits—Beecher, the burning and shining light of the Northern Church, whose utterances attract thousands every Sabbath. He says that in a few years the Southern

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