The Yankee nation, elevated by the recent victories of its hireling armies, is entirely certain of the speedy and thorough subjugation of the South
It laughs to scorn any idea of any other possibility, and exults in delicious day-dreams of the degradation to which its enemy will be reduced.
It glories in the consciousness of its brute strength, and intends to exercise it in the spirit of a brute.
All the enormous self-complacency and self-concept which for a while were humbled by the battle of Manassas
have renewed their ancient exaltation, and they fancy themselves the masters of the Universe, and the predestined conquerors of all mankind.
But the work of subjugation is as distant now as ever — more distant, more impracticable than it was before the shadow of disaster had been cast upon our flag.
If our early victories had been followed up, and a blow struck which would have paralyzed the North
and compelled a peace, it would have been a temporary paralysis, and a peace which would have subjugated the South
more completely than she is ever likely to be by the hands of her enemies.
The inevitable consequence of a speedy peace would have been the restoration of the old commercial and manufacturing dependency of the South
upon the North
, with no her results of her nominal independence a temporary exemption from abolition legislation, and the heavy expense of a separate Government, with none of those urces of wealth to support it which commerce, manufactures, and trade supply.
Such condition, call it by what name we may, be essentially subjugation; and if the North
had taken counsel of wisdom instead of pride, malignity, and revenge, it would in the first instance never have permitted the to be waged, or, when it had begun, have brought it to a termination as speedily as possible.
When we say that the subjugation of the is now more remote than it would have after an early peace, we have no reference to that small minority which, in the , as well as every community, is willing to purchase peace at any price.
There are tories in the South
as there were tories in the Revolution, whose only sympathies are with the enemies of their country, who lament its histories and rejoice over its defeats.
The subjugation of these is not the question, for of the tyrants who threaten to oppress us, , in the event of an opportunity, would the most revengeful and inexorable.
The in the Revolution committed atrocities which far surpassed the most cruel oppressors of the British
invaders, and we are pressured to expect from Southern tories — happily so many in number nor so capable of mischief as their illustrious predecessors — the exhibition of a similar spirit.
There is another more numerous class who may be subjugated, because they are already subjugated by their apprehensions of the evils and calamities which are incident to a state of war.--Whilst generally honest and patriotic, they took upon national honor as an abstraction, to be weighed against personal comfort security and material gain.
‘"Dying for one's country,"’ they consider a very pretty poetical sentiment, much to be admired in novels and tragedies; but, like many other poetical sentiments, nonsensical and Quixotic when reduced to practice.
Self-indulgence is the rule of life with many men who are patriotic, honest, virtuous, and moral as long as the exercise of those qualities costs them no sacrifice.
But of any higher life than the life of the flesh they have not the faintest conception, nor can they imagine any greater evil than the loss of money, the deprivation of physical comforts, and, above all, the loss of life.
No one will deny that the subjugation of this class is practicable, even with a moiety of the immense forces which Lincoln
has brought into the field.
But such is not the spirit of the great majority of the Southern
They are devotedly attached to their country, to its institutions, to its habits and modes of life, and they have an innate and ineradicable antagonism to the political and social system of the invading race, to their character and habits, and their very modes of speech, which the present cruel war has intensified into such passionate and profound detestation that sooner than acknowledge the Yankees
as masters they would rather see the whole Southern country sink to the bottom of the ocean.
As a whole, the South
is proud, sensitive to the last degree to a stain upon her honor, and holding death an inferior evil to degradation.
Such men may be overrun, may be exterminated, but they cannot be subjugated.
They will resist as long as resistance is possible, and, if conquered, they will not stay conquered.--When the spirits of a people are indomitable,
they can never be enslaved; and so long as the South
is true to herself, she will maintain her freedom and independence.
What can the enemy do with such a people?
If driven from the cities they will retire to the country, and their cities all together could not mob a town half the size of New York.--To follow them to the country, in the vast territory of the South
, would require an army more numerous than that of Xerxes
They will retire to the country and take their arms with them, each man his trusty rifle, and be prepared to seize the first opportunity to reassert their rights.
They will at once destroy the cotton and other staples which the North
is endeavoring to force from them by the sword, and will never cultivate them again till they can do so for their own benefit.
Every bale of cotton in the Southern States
will be burned, and the proprietors will raise wheat and corn and other articles which they have hitherto purchased of the North
They will return to the simple and frugal ways of their forefathers, in dress, furniture, and all the comforts of life, manufacturing for themselves such slain and useful articles as their simple wants and absolute necessities require.
If the Yankees
choose to hold their cities, and be masters of the only spots where their armies are quartered, these will be but islands in the midst of a vast ocean, and will not affect the freedom and independence of the people so long as they are constant to their cause and true to themselves.
In the very worst aspect of the Southern
cause, this is the extreme limit which Yankee subjugation can reach, even if our armies could be driven from every battle-field, and every Southern city and fort fall into the enemy's hands.
But the accomplishment even of that result, with all their superiority of numbers, is an achievement beyond their power.
They have taught us by the perseverance with which they contrived to fight us after their signal reverses at Bethel
, Bull Run
, Carnifax Ferry, Leesburg
, Greenbrier River
, and others, not to be dismayed and disheartened by reverses, but to make them incentives to new energy and fresh determination.
We shall rise, like Antaeus
, refreshed by every fall.
The farther the enemy penetrates into the interior and extends his line of march, the more costly and perilous will be his means of aggression, and the more economical and practicable our means of defence.
Everywhere he will be met by desperate and prolonged resistance, until the foreign world, dependent as it is upon Southern commerce, would become impatient of the eternal contest, and itself interpose to put an end to the mad dreams of Southern subjugation.