Our enemies in the Northwest.
We trust that the day is not far distant when the traitors in Northwestern Virginia
will receive their merited punishment.
If they are dissatisfied with the Ordinance of Secession passed by the Convention
, they were estopped from all complaint when that Ordinance had received the overwhelming majority of the popular vote.
They took their chances in the Convention
, and, through their champion, Carlile
, waged a steady warfare for the Union
, gaining repeated victories in the votes of that body, to which the Secessionists submitted like loyal citizens and honorable gentlemen.
They at last defeated, by a large majority, the Secession Ordinance
, and to that the Secessionists submitted, without raising a finger of resistance; nor, if the Convention
had adjourned immediately upon that anti-secession vote, would there have been any resistance from any quarter to the execution of its will.
Not only this, but, having taken their chances in the Convention
, the Northwest
also took its chances at the polls, voting in heavy masses against secession, to say nothing of the foreign votes which were imported for the occasion.
If they had succeeded in defeating the Ordinance at the polls, would they not have expected the rest of the State
to submit to the supreme voice of the people?
What regard for the law, for the popular will, for personal honor, must men have, who having thus appealed to the decision of the Convention
, and afterwards to the decision of the people, refuse to be bound by the decision of either, and deliberately carve out an independent domain and set up a new Government on the soil of Virginia
It would have been bad enough if, under such circumstances, they had imitated the ‘"dignified neutrality"’ of Kentucky
, and the least they could have done would have been to forbid Federal troops from crossing their territory.
But they became at once our most active, audacious, uncompromising enemies.
They invoked the Government
to prostitute their soil by the Federal
troops, they gravely enacted the mockery of electing a Governor and Legislature and sending representatives to Congress; they murdered and drove from their houses, and aided in sending as prisoners to Ohio
, every faithful son of Virginia
who could be found within their limits; their citizens would profess friendship to deceive our troops, and lead them into ambushes where their blood could be shed by the mercenary hirelings of Lincoln
. Was ever such baseness heard since the beginning of time?
Yet, these very Northwester Unionists
have been hanging for years like regular bloodhounds upon the public treasury; they have been horse-leeches, ever crying ‘"Give, Give;"’ and the pet town, Wheeling
, has been a yearly mendicant and a yearly recipient of the most liberal legislative favors for many years.
It is impossible to find a parallel in all history to the ingratitude and baseness of the Union
faction in Northwestern Virginia