Secession movement at the South.
letter from Ex-Gov. Wise
--"Fighting in the Union
"--the resignation of Secretary Cobb
, &c., &c.
, of Va.
, having been written to by a gentleman of Columbus, Ga.
, to define what he means by "fighting in the Union
," replies as follows:
Rolliston, near Norfolk, Va., December 1, 1860.
Yours of the 22d ult. Was late coming to hand.
I now thank you for it. As to my doctrine of "fighting in the Union
," it is one of true policy:
If a sovereign State is judge of the infraction as well as of the mode and measure of redress, she may remain in the Union to resent or resist wrongs as well as do so out of the Union.
If other States have infracted the Union, not she, the State wronged, is bound to defend the Constitution and Union against those who have infracted the one and threatened the other.
Logically the Union belongs to those who have kept, not to those who have broken its covenants.
The Union is not an abstraction; it is a real, substantial thing, embracing many essential and vital political rights and properties.
It has nationality, lands, treasury, organization of army, navy, ships, dock yards, arsenals, &c., &c, &c. Shall we renounce these rights and possessions because wrong-doers attempt to deprive us of other rights?
Is it not cowardly to renounce one right to save another?
Are these rights not as precious as the mere right of property in negroes?
It you secede, you not only renounce the Union and its professions, but you fail to unite your own people, because you do renounce these rights.
Wake a man up to destroy the Union and Constitution, and he will stare at you and turn away.
But tell him that the Constitution is infracted and the Union threatened by Black Republicans, and call him to aid you in defending both against these who would destroy both, and he will act heartily with you.
Then how is this to be done?
The 3d clause of the 10th Section of the 1st Art. of the Constitution of the United States permits a State to keep troops and ships of war in time of peace, and to engage in war, when actually invaded, or when in such imminent danger as will not admit of delay.
Now, are we not actually invaded?
Is our danger not imminent?
Does it admit of delay?
May not a sovereign State so decide?
And what is the difference?
Will it not be revolution and war in either event?
I say, then, stick to all your rights, renounce none, fight for all and save all!
Correspondence between Secretary Cobb and the President.
The following is Secretary Cobb
's letter tendering his resignation, and the President
Washington City, Dec. 8.
My Dear Sir:
A sense of duty to the State of Georgia
requires me to take a step which makes it proper that I should no longer continue to be a member of your Cabinet.
In the troubles of the country consequent upon the late Presidential election, the honor and safety of my State are involved.
Her people so regard it, and in their opinion I fully concur.
They are engaged in a struggle where the issue is life or death.
My friends ask for my views and counsel.
Not to respond would be degrading to myself and unjust to them.
I have accordingly prepared, and must now issue to them, an address which contains the calm and solemn convictions of my heart and judgment.
The views which I sincerely entertain, and which, therefore, I am bound to express, differ in some respects from your own. The existence of this difference would expose me, if I should remain in my present place, to unjust suspicions, and put you in a false position.--The first of these consequences I could bear well enough, but I will not subject you to the last.
My withdrawal has not been occasioned by anything you have said or done.
Whilst differing from your Message upon some of its theoretical doctrines, as well as from the hope so earnestly expressed that the Union
can yet be preserved, there was no practical result likely to follow which required me to retire from your administration.
That necessity is created by what I feel it my duty to do; and the responsibility of the act, therefore, rests alone upon myself.
To say that I regret — deeply regret — this necessity, but feebly expresses the feeling with which I pen this communication.
For nearly four years I have been associated with you as one of your Cabinet officers
, and during that period nothing has occurred to mar, even for a moment, our personal and official relations.--In the policy and measures of your administration I have cordially concurred, and shall ever feel proud of the bumble place which my name may occupy in its history.
If your wise counsels and patriotic warnings had been heeded by your countrymen, the fourth of March next would have found our country happy, prosperous and united.
That it will not be so, is no fault of yours.
The evil has now passed beyond control, and must be met by each and all of us under our responsibility to God and our country.
If, as as I believe, history will have to record yours as the last administration of our present Union, it will also place it side by side with the purest and ablest of these that preceded it.
With the kindest regards for yourself and the members of your Cabinet, with whom I have been so pleasantly associated, I am most truly and sincerely your friend,
Washington, Dec. 10, 1860.
My Dear Sir:
I have received your communication of Saturday evening, resigning the position of Secretary of the Treasury
, which you have held since the commencement of my administration.
Whilst I deeply regret that you have determined to separate yourself from us at the present critical moment, yet I admit that the question was one for your own decision.
I could have wished you had arrived at a different conclusion, because our relations, both official and personal, have ever been of the most friendly and confidential character.
I may add that I have been entirely satisfied with the ability and zeal which you have displayed in performing the duties of your important office.
The Warrenton (Va.)
We learn that the Governor
of South Carolina
has accepted the tender of the services of Capt. Scott
's Black Horse company of Fauquier
Such is the reputation of this company abroad that in the event of its going to South Carolina
an officer in the regular army has volunteered to go along as a private in the ranks.
New York as a free Port.
A letter in the Philadelphia Ledger, from New York, says:
The declaration of Mr. Sickles
, yesterday, that if the Union
is broken up, New York city will not consent to be an appendage of a Puritan (New England) province, but will assert her own independence, means much more, under the surface of things, than most people may imagine.
The moment secession takes place, you may rely upon it, a movement will take place here which will astonish the natives.
The train is already laid, and the explosion only awaits the culmination of events elsewhere to bring about the explosion.
On the whole, however, the feeling on all hands to-day is a little more hopeful.
Much is expected of the Committee
of Thirty-three, and much also from the compromise Lieut. General Scott
is said to be anxious to offer.