s members were elected as Union men.
And they and their constituents continued to be so, until the determination to coerce the seceded States was proclaimed by the President of the United States, and Virginia required to furnish her quota of the troops to be organized for the purpose.
War being then inevitable, and the convention compelled to decide whether the State should aid in the subjugation of the other Southern States, or join them in the defense of principles it had professed since 1789 --belong to the invading party, or to that standing on the defensive — it chose the latter, and passed its ordinance of secession.
The people confirmed that choice by an overwhelming vote.
The passage of that ordinance, in secret session on the 17th of April, was not known in Washington, where, as Quartermaster-General of the United States Army, I was then stationed, until the 19th.
I believed, like most others, that the division of the country would be permanent; and that, apart from a