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‘ [55] breadth of patriotism for which no words of praise can be too strong.’

‘In the making of the government under which we live,’ says the same writer, ‘these five names—Washington, Madison, Hamilton, Jefferson and Marshall—stand before all others.’ Four out of the five, as it is hardly necessary to remind the reader, were Virginians.

But why accumulate testimony? The warmest of partisans could not desire, could not select himself, stronger terms of admiration and gratitude than have been bestowed by those at whose hands this flagrant wrong was suffered, upon the State which was first dismembered, and then—the torn and bleeding fragment that remained—stripped of every vestige of rights, every shadow of freedom, reduced to a ‘geographical expression,’ ticketed like a galley-slave as District No. 1, and placed under absolute military rule, as no other English-speaking community had been for centuries. Judged by what they themselves have admitted, nay, loudly proclaimed, no plea in mitigation is to be found here.

Was she then, lastly, peculiarly responsible for the occurrence of the late war between the States? On the contrary, as is known to all, at every crisis in the country's history her voice had been consistently and earnestly raised for peace. In 1832, when the ground of quarrel was not even nominally slavery, but, as in 1776, purely a question of taxation, she had stood as mediator between the exasperated parties which hung suspended on the verge of strife, and solemnly protested, not then in vain, against an appeal to the bloody arbitrament of arms. In 1850, for the sake of that Union which she had been foremost in founding and preserving, she had acquiesced, though reluctantly and with the gravest misgivings, in measures which were, in her deliberate judgment, not only wrongful, and oppressive in themselves, but in the highest degree injurious to her interests and menacing to her safety. What was her course in 1861? As long as a shadow of hope remained, even indeed, after the last shadow might well have been thought, by an impartial observer, to have vanished, she did not cease, by every means in her power, to ‘seek peace and ensue it.’ She inaugurated a ‘Peace Conference,’ invoking ‘the spirit in which the Constitution was originally formed’ to settle ‘the present unhappy controversy;’ patiently, unweariedly, she labored to avert the impending conflict. The last great effort of her most distinguished contemporary statesman, speaking, as her ambassador and representative, on the floor of the United States' Senate, was an eloquent and forcible appeal


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