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‘  of the great Southern States into small freeholds will effect a complete social revolution in the South, and this is probably one of the objects which Mr. Johnson has most at heart, and in which he will be fully supported by the new Congress.’ President Johnson himself, in a speech delivered shortly after his inauguration, said: ‘But if the assassin of the President is not to escape deserved punishment, what shall be done to those who have attempted the assassination of the Republic—who have compassed the life of the nation? The lesson must be taught beyond the possibility of ever being unlearned, that treason is a crime—the greatest of human crimes.’ Expressions from high authority, of which these are samples, seemed to foreshadow unrelenting and vindictive persecution, to what limit none could surmise. Jefferson Davis was a prisoner in Fortress Monroe, ignominiously ironed like a common felon; John H. Reagan, late Confederate postmaster-general, was likewise confined in Fort Warren. Other late officials had escaped by flight in disguise and found safety in foreign lands. What future was reserved for the South, prostrate and helpless, wholly subject to the will of the victorious North, appeared to be beyond the scope of prophetic vision.
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