They wore the Gray.—The Southern cause Vindicated. an Address by Hon. Peter Turney, Chief justice of the Supreme court of Tennessee, before the Tennessee Association of Confederate veterans, at Nashville, August 8th, 1888.
“The objects of this association being social, historical and benevolent, and its labors being directed to cultivating the ties of friendship between the survivors of the armies and navies of the late Confederate States, to keeping fresh the memories of our comrades who gave up their lives for the cause they deemed right, to the perpetuation of the records of their deeds of heroism, to the collection and disposition, in the manner it deems best, of all materials,” etc., we cannot and must not in anywise in the least sympathize with that spirit of seeming apology we sometimes meet. We retract nothing, and believe the cause in which our comrades fell was just; that they and we were not traitors or rebels against the authorized action of that government from which we seceded; otherwise it would be unlawful and immoral to attempt to keep alive and perpetuate the memories of those who fell, or to preserve for history the records of their deeds of heroism. Nothing unpatriotic, immoral, unlawful or treasonable should be the basis of any association. It would be unpardonable in us to perpetuate, by positive activity, that cause of ours which would brand us as rebels against law, and teach our children that we have violated morals, order and social and political obligation. We are proposing to do none of these things. A conviction of right and duty impelled us to enter the service of the Confederate States as soldiers; our comrades who gave up their lives, did so in obedience to love of country and its constitutional foundation. The Confederate States were not and are not responsible, morally, legally or politically, for any drop of blood spilled in the late war between the States. Under the principles of the Union, as it then existed, the right of secession was clear. In support of this right, I will say but little else than cite authority. The agitation of the slavery question in its several aspects, with centralization for its great purpose, was a main cause of trouble and separation. The words of the Constitution were: ‘No person held to service or labor in one State under the laws thereof, escaping into another, shall in consequence of any law or regulation therein, be discharged from such service or labor, but shall be delivered up on claim of the party to whom such service or labor is due.’  Of this clause Judge Story, in delivering the opinion of the Supreme Court in Prigg v. Pennsylvania, said: ‘It cannot be doubted that it constituted a fundamental article, without the adoption of which the Union could not have been formed.’ 16 Peters. It must, therefore, of course, have been a condition of the Union's continuance. We will see how this provision of the Constitution was observed and treated by the abolition or free States. Between the years 1810 and 1850 the losses to the South in fugitive slaves amounted to $22,000,000, an annual loss for that period of $550,000. The ratio of loss increased as the slave population increased. To what it amounted at the date of secession I am unable to state just now. The curious, however, may readily ascertain. The census for 1810 gave a slave population of 1,191,400; that of 1820, 1,538,100; that of 1830, 2,009,030; that of 1840, 2,487,500; that of 1850, 3,204,300; that of 1860, 3,979,700. Estimating the average value at $300, the South lost by the emancipation $1,193,910,000, exclusive of at least $6,500,000 in fugitives between the years 1850 and 1861. The claim of the party of coercion, that morality justified the infliction of that loss on the South, is met and fully answered by their head, President Lincoln, who said in the Hampton Roads' conference, ‘that the people of the North were as responsible for slavery as the people of the South.’ History shows the North to be equally responsible at the least, and I undertake to say more so, and I feel sure that I am able to prove it should it ever become necessary. About the first of May, 1850, the New York State Vigilance Anti-Slavery Committee, of which the famous Gerritt Smith was chairman, held its anniversary meeting in public in the city of New York. I give a single passage from its official report:
The committee have within the year, since the 1st of May, 1849, assisted one hundred and fifty-one fugitives (for that you know is our business) in escaping from servitude.I cite this as one of many specimens of the respect the anti-slavery people had for constitutional guaranties and protections. In speaking upon the clause of the Constitution just cited, Mr. Seward, of New York, said in the United States Senate on March 11, 1850: ‘The law of nations disavows such compacts, the law of Nature written on the hearts and consciences of freemen repudiates them. I know that there are laws of various sorts which regulate the conduct of men. There are constitutions and statutes, codes mercantile, and codes civil; but when we are legislating for States,  especially when we are founding States, all these laws must be brought to the standard of the law of God, must be tried by that standard, and must stand or fall by it. To conclude on this point, we are not slaveholders, we cannot in our judgment be true Christians or real freemen, if we impose on others a claim that we defy all human power to fasten on ourselves.’ He also said: ‘Wherein do the strength and security of slavery lie? You answer, that they lie in the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution and laws of the slaveholding States. Not at all. It is in the erroneous sentiments of the American people. Constitutions and laws can no more rise above the virtue of the people than the limpid stream can rise above its spring. Inculcate the love of freedom and the equal rights of man under the paternal roof; see to it that they are taught in the schools and in the churches. Reform your code. Extend a cordial welcome to the fugitive who lays his weary limbs at your door, and defend him as you would your paternal gods. Correct your error, that slavery has any constitutional guarantee which may not be released and ought not to be relinquished. Say to slavery, when it shows its bond and demands the pound of flesh, that if it draws one drop of blood its life shall pay the forfeit. Inculcate that free States can maintain the rights of hospitality and humanity; that executive authority can forbear to favor slavery.’ Thus it was urged, and attempted to be taught, that the Constitution was the embodiment of crime and oaths to support it of no effect or binding force. That we must regard such obligations as baubles, as things to deceive, as snares to entrap. We were asked to make such doctrines a part of our education and a controlling feature of our religion. To make perjury a pillar of Church and State, and the crime of larceny a commendable virtue. The seeds so sown bore fruit. Article IV, section 2, of the United States Constitution, ordains: ‘A person charged in any State with treason, felony, or other crime, who shall flee from justice and be found in another State, shall, on demand of the executive authority of the State from which he fled, be delivered up to be removed to the State having jurisdiction of the crime.’ In two instances, Kent and Fairfield, Governors of Maine, refused to comply with this provision on requisitions by the Governor of Georgia for negro thieves. Governor Seward (afterwards Senator), of New York, made a similar refusal to the same State, saying it was not against the laws of New York to steal a negro. He made a similar refusal to Virginia.  These Governors were sworn to support the Constitution of the United States, and certainly understood its plain command. In 1793, while Washington was President, an act was passed to carry out the provision for the return of fugitive slaves. It was adopted unanimously in the Senate, and nearly so in the House. The Federal and State courts held it to be constitutional, and yet these Governors refused to execute it. On the 7th of January, 1861, more than two weeks after South Carolina had passed her ordinance of secession, Mr. Toombs, of Georgia, in a speech in the Senate, said: ‘The Supreme Court has decided that by the Constitution we have a right to go to the territories and be protected with our property. Mr. Lincoln says he does not care what the Supreme Court decides, he will turn us out anyhow. He says this in his debate with the Honorable Senator from Illinois, Mr. Dunlap. I have it before me. He said he would vote against the decision of the Supreme Court.’ This charge against Mr. Lincoln was never denied by himself or friends. Instances of disregard of the Constitution by those sworn to observe it, might be readily multiplied, but I only want to make prominent the principles moving the South to its course Having seen our rights under and by the Constitution, I will turn attention to that course. The Southern States claimed they were sovereign, having all powers except such as were specially delegated to Congress. They demanded that property in slaves should be entitled to the same protection from the Government of the United States, in all its departments everywhere, which the Constitution confers upon it the power to extend to any other property; provided, nothing shall be construed to limit or restrain the right now belonging to every State to prohibit, abolish, or establish and protect slavery within its limits. That persons committing crimes against slave property in one State and fleeing to another, shall be delivered up in the same manner as persons committing crimes against other property, and that the laws of the State from which such person fled shall be the test of criminality. That Congress should pass efficient laws for the punishment of all persons in any of the States who shall, in any manner, aid and abet invasion or insurrection in any other State, or commit any other act against the laws of nations, tending to disturb the tranquility of the people or government of any other State. That the people of the United States should have an equal right to emigrate to and settle in the present or any future acquired territories,  with whatever property they might possess, and be protected in its peaceable enjoyment until such territory may be admitted into the Union, with or without slavery, as she may determine, on an equality with all existing States. As the Supreme Court has decided, and as the ‘originally small party’ now decides in principle, when in its June platform of 1888 it declares: ‘The government by Congress of the territories is based upon necessity, only to the end that they become States in the Union; therefore, whenever the conditions of population, material resources, public intelligence and morality are such as to insure stable government therein, the people of such territories should be permitted to form for themselves constitutions on State government and be admitted into the Union.’ Time and circumstances work wonderful changes. What howls were raised by that party a few decades back, and now with what deafening cheers it greets them! How many of you, my friends, even hoped to see the day when the party of coercion would not only endorse, but actually adopt a chief article of your faith in the right and act of secession? I answer, not one. Nevertheless, you have seen it. Wonder of wonders! All our demands were reasonable and conformable to the Constitution, still they were stubbornly refused by those high in authority who had sworn to support the Constitution, and who were followed in their course by the people they represented. After all this and after South Carolina had seceded, the other States of the South were so anxious to continue the Union under the Constitution and to stand by and perpetuate its principles, a peace congress was called. Virginia, taking the lead, called that congress which met in Washington city in February, 1861. Judge Chase, a leader of the anti-slavery movement, afterwards Mr. Lincoln's Secretary of State and later Chief Justice of the United States, was a delegate to that congress. As such delegate, he, on the 6th of March, made a speech, in which he said:
The result of the national canvass which recently terminated in the election of Mr. Lincoln has been spoken of by some as the effect of sudden impulse or of some singular excitement of the popular mind, and it has been somewhat confidently asserted that, upon reflection and consideration, the hastily formed opinions which brought about the election will be changed. It has been said also that subordinate questions of local and temporary character have augmented the Republican vote, and secured a majority which could not have been obtained upon the national questions involved in the respective platforms of the parties which divide the country. I cannot  take this view of the presidential election. I believe, and the belief amounts to absolute conviction, that the election must be regarded as a triumph of principles cherished in the hearts of the people of the free States. These principles, it is true, were originally asserted by a small party only, but after years of discussion they have by their own value, their own intrinsic soundness, obtained the deliberate and unalterable sanction of the people's judgment. Chief among these principles is the restriction of slavery within State limits; not war upon slavery within those limits, but fixed opposition to its extension beyond them. Mr. Lincoln was the candidate of the people opposed to the extension of slavery. We have elected him. After many years of earnest advocacy and severe trial we have achieved the triumph of that principle. By a fair and unquestionable majority we have obtained that triumph. Do you think we who represent this majority will throw it away? Do you think the people would sustain us if we undertook to throw it away? I must speak to you plainly, gentlemen of the South. It is not in my heart to deceive you. I therefore tell you explicitly that if we of the North and West would consent to throw away all that has been gained in the recent triumph of our principles, the people would not sustain us, and so the consent would avail you nothing. And I must tell you, further, that under no circumstances whatever will we consent to surrender a principle which we believe to be sound and so important as that of restricting slavery within State limits.Here was a positive assertion that Lincoln and the party which elected him would not respect the decision of the Supreme Court. Then, if the Constitution, as construed by that court, a tribunal constituted for the purpose, was to be so emphatically disregarded and ignored, what remedy was left for the South? If that organic law, by the terms and assurances of which the States became parts of the Union, is repudiated, was the South required in morals or good faith to quietly submit? I answer, No. Mr. Chase proceeds: ‘Aside from the territorial question, the question of slavery outside of the slave States, I know of but one serious difficulty. I refer to the question concerning fugitives from service. The clause in the Constitution concerning this class of persons is regarded by almost all men, North and South, as a stipulation for the surrender to their masters of slaves escaping into free States. The people of the free States, however, who believe that slave-holding is wrong, cannot and will not aid in the reclamation, and the stipulation, therefore, becomes  a dead letter. * * * You, thinking slavery right, claim the fulfillment of the stipulation; we, thinking slavery wrong, cannot fulfill the stipulation without consciousness of participation in wrong.’ This leaves no room to question the policy marked out by Mr. Lincoln. The speech of Mr. Chase, his chief adviser, distinctly announced that, in two essentials, the Constitution should not be observed and executed. He avows that the Constitution shall not be the law of the land, but that the will of the party coming into power shall be that law, a declaration in words that the Constitution is a dead letter. The course to be pursued was the usurpation of the powers of government and their absorption in centralization. It is admitted that that party understood the Constitution as we did, but that for years it had been its settled and fixed determination not to execute it. That while it would solemnly swear to execute it, it would not do so. That it had triumphed on its purpose and principle of disobedience, and it would avail itself of that triumph and subvert and overthrow the principles of the government and obliterate the Constitution it must swear to maintain, and by virtue of which only it could take control and management. Try the questions by the rules laid down by Mr. Chase for his party, and who are the rebels, the traitors, the conspirators against the government? The assertion that the Southern States are is the cap, the climax of deliberate and criminal impudence or inexcusable ignorance. The entire speech of Mr. Chase is interesting as part of the history of its time and the spirit of the party about to take control of the government. All Southerners, especially those of Confederate blood and extraction, should read it. They will find in it much to defend us against the charges of treason, conspiracy and rebellion, and much to shift these charges to the shoulders of others. It proves, as was said by Hon. C. J. Ingersoll, of Pennsylvania, in the House of Representatives on the 9th of June, 1841, that ‘The abolition agitation is’ (was) ‘a conspiracy in the true definition of that offense. It is the combination of many to break law, which is the definition of conspiracy; none the better that the conspirators are, many of them, persons of fair character and perhaps pious designs.’ The South was left without protection of constitutional guaranties and without hope in the decisions of the court of last resort, it must therefore resort to its only remedy, secession. It was outlawed. The Constitution denounced as ‘a dead letter.’ The evils likely and almost certain to flow from the teaching of Judge Chase's ‘originally small party’ were seen and dreaded by the best and most  patriotic minds of the North. Daniel Webster, who had no superior as a statesman, who was regarded the best constitutional lawyer in the land, and whose patriotism embraced the whole country, was alarmed, and gave the best efforts of his life to check and paralyze the lawlessness of the ‘originally small party.’ In a reception speech made in New York on the 15th of March, 1837, he said:
We have slavery already amongst us. The Constitution found it in the Union, recognized it, and gave it solemn guaranties. So the full extent of these guaranties we are bound in honor, in justice, and by the Constitution. All the stipulations contained in the Constitution in favor of the slaveholding States which are already in the Union ought to be fulfilled, and, so far as depends on me, shall be fulfilled in the fullness of their spirit and to the exactness of their letter. Slavery as it exists in the States is beyond the reach of Congress. It is a concern of the States themselves; they have never submitted it to Congress, and Congress has no rightful power over it. I shall concur therefore in no act, no measure, no menace, no indication of purpose which shall interfere with the exclusive authority of the States over the subject of slavery as it exists within their respective limits. All this appears to me to be matter of plain and imperative duty.At Buffalo, on the 22d of May, 1851, he said: ‘There is but one question in this country now, or, if there be others, they are but secondary, and so subordinate that they are all absorbed in that great and leading question, and that is nothing more nor less than this: “Can we preserve the union of the States, not by coercion, not by military power, not by angry controversies, but can we of this generation—you and I, your friends and my friend—scan we so preserve the union of these States by such administration of the powers of the Constitution as shall give content and satisfaction to all who live under it, and draw us together, not by military power, but by the silken cords of mutual, paternal, patriotic affection? That is the question, and no other.” Gentlemen, I believe in party distinctions; I am a party man. These are questions belonging to party, in which I take an interest, and there are opinions entertained by others which I repudiate. But what of all that? If a house be divided against itself it will fall and crush everybody in it. We must see that we maintain the government which is over us; we must see that we uphold the Constitution, and we must do so without regard to party. The question, fellow-citizens (and I put it to you now as the real question), the question is, whether you and the rest of the people of the great State of New York and of all the  States will so adhere to the Constitution, will so enact and maintain laws to preserve that instrument, that you will not only remain in the Union yourselves, but permit your brethren to remain in it? That is the question. Will you concur in measures necessary to maintain the Union, or will you oppose such measures? That is the whole point of the case.’ After giving a history of the formation of the Union, Mr. Webster proceeds:
Now, I am aware that all these things are well known; that they have been stated a thousand times; but in these days of perpetual discontent and misrepresentation, to state things a thousand times is not enough, for there are persons whose consciences, it would seem, lead them to consider it their duty to deny, misrepresent, and cover up truths. Now, these are the words of the Constitution, fellow-citizens, which I have taken the pains to transcribe therefrom, so that he who runs may read:At Capon Springs, Virginia, June 28, 1851, Mr. Webster said:No person held to service or labor in one State under the laws thereof escaping into another, shall, in consequence of any law or regulation therein, be discharged from such service or labor, but shall be delivered up on claim of the party to whom such service or labor may be due.Is there any mistake about that? Is there any forty shilling attorney here to make a question of it? No; I will not disgrace my profession by supposing such a thing. There is not in or out of an attorney's office in the county of Erie, or elsewhere, one who could raise a doubt, or particle of doubt, about the meaning of this provision of the Constitution. He may act as witnesses do sometimes on the stand. He may wriggle and twist, and say he cannot tell or cannot remember. I have seen many such efforts in my time on the part of witnesses to falsify and deny the truth. But there is no man who can read these words of the Constitution of the United States and say they are not clear and imperative. “No person,” the Constitution says, “held to labor or service in one State under the laws thereof, escaping into another, shall, in consequence of any law or regulation therein, be discharged from such service or labor, but shall be delivered up on claim of the party to whom such service or labor may be due.” Why, you may be told by forty conventions in Massachusetts, in Ohio, in New York, or elsewhere, that if a colored man comes here he comes as a freeman, that is non sequitur. It is not so. If he comes as a fugitive from labor, the Constitution says he is not a freeman, and that he shall be delivered up to those who are entitled to his service. Gentlemen, that is the Constitution. Do  we or do we not mean to conform to it and to execute that part of the Constitution as well as the rest of it? I believe there are before me here members of Congress. I suppose there may be here members of the State Legislature or executive offices under the State government. I suppose there may be judicial magistrates of New York, executive officers, assessors, supervisors, justices of the peace, and constables before me. Allow me to say, gentlemen, that there is not, there cannot be, any one of these officers in this assemblage or elsewhere who has not, according to the form of the usual obligation, bound himself by solemn oath to support the Constitution. They have taken their oaths on the Holy Evangelists of Almighty God, or by uplifted hands, as the case may be, or by solemn affirmation as is the practice in some cases; but among all of them there is not a man who holds, nor is there any man who can hold, any office in the gift of the United States, or of this State, or of any other State, who does not bind himself by the solemn obligation of an oath to support the Constitution of the United States. Well, is he to tamper with that? Is he to palter? Gentlemen, our political duties are as much matters of conscience as any other duties. Our sacred domestic duties—our most endearing social relations—are not more the subjects for conscientious consideration or a conscientious discharge than the duties we enter upon under the Constitution of the United States. The bonds of political brotherhood, which hold us together from Maine to Georgia, rest upon the same principles of obligation as those of social and domestic life.
The leading sentiment in the toast from the Chair is, “The Union of the States.” The Union of the States; what mind can comprehend the consequences of that union, past, present, and to come. The union of these States is the all-absorbing topic of the day. On it all men speak, write, think, and dilate from the rising of the sun to the going down thereof. And yet, gentlemen, I fear that its importance has been but insufficiently appreciated. How absurd it is to suppose that when different parties enter into a compact for certain purposes, either can disregard any one provision, and expect, nevertheless, the other to observe the rest. I intend, for one, to regard and maintain and carry out to the fullest extent the Constitution of the United States, which I have sworn to support in all its parts and provisions. It is written in the Constitution: “No person held to service or labor in one State under the laws thereof, escaping into another shall, in consequence of any law or regulations  therein, be discharged from such service or labor, but shall be delivered up on claim of the party to whom such service or labor may be due.” That is as much a part of the Constitution as any other, and as equally binding and obligatory as any other on all men, public or private. And who denies this? None but the abolitionists of the North. And, pray, what is it they will not deny? They have but the one idea, and it would seem that these fanatics at the North and the secessionists at the South are putting their heads together to defeat the good designs of honest and patriotic men. They act to the same end and the same object, and the Constitution has to take the fire from both sides. I have not hesitated to say, and I repeat, that if the Northern States refuse, wilfully and deliberately, to carry into effect that part of the Constitution which respects the restoration of fugitive slaves, and Congress provides no remedy, the South would no longer be bound to observe the compact A bargain cannot be broken on one side and still bind the other side. I say to you, gentlemen, as I said on the shores of Lake Erie and in the city of Boston, and as I may say again in that city, or elsewhere in the North, that you of the South have as much right to receive your fugitive slaves as the North has to any of its rights and privileges of navigation and commerce. I am as ready to fight and to fall for the constitutional rights of Virginia as I am for those of Massachusetts.Now if Daniel Webster, whose greatness of mind and nobility of soul are better and more impressively and significantly expressed by the isolated name ‘Daniel Webster,’ than they would be by the use of any or all the adjectives of our language defining those virtues, and whose patriotism was as broad as the land; who loved the Union for its constitutional ties and guaranties, and who hated slavery in every form, and was willing to use all lawful means for its abolition—if he, with his universally known character and convictions, was ready to fight and to fall for the constitutional rights of the South, where was the wrong or even the slightest mistake on the part of the Southern man who had been reared in the education that the institutions of the South were sound in law and in morals? He told us we had the constitutional right to the property. That if the North disregarded the contract in any one particular we were released from all obligation to observe the rest. Trying the principles of the ‘originally small party’ of Mr. Chase, Mr. Lincoln and Mr. Seward by the plain and incontrovertible  rules of constitutional law as laid down by Daniel Webster, we find they can only exist in the palpable and gross violation of the Constitution as it then was. Mr. Webster's argument is so full, clear and exhaustive that I will not be guilty of the folly of attempting to add to or elucidate it. I commend it to the attention and perusal of all Southern men and women. Its teachings should be transferred to our school-books to supersede and paralyze the false and poisonous manufacture of history that has found its way into so many of the books that have been introduced into the schools of the South, with the purpose to mislead and disease the minds of our children as to the purpose, policy and good faith of our separation from the government of that ‘originally small party’ so much condemned, if not despised, by Mr. Webster, and to which he administered such rebukes as to induce us to believe he could and would keep it in check, and perhaps obliterate it. If Daniel Webster could have been spared to the Union there would not, in my opinion, have arisen cause for separation. His death in October, 1852, unbridled the fanaticism of that ‘originally small party’ and brought it into power eight years later, when it proposed to conduct the Government on its peculiar sentiments of morality regardless of the constitutional limitations and restrictions which had been upholden and enforced by the Supreme Court for more than seventy-five years. It was the ‘higher law party’ acting without warrant of authority, and in violation of that compact of which Mr. Webster said one party could not disregard any one provision and expect the other to observe the rest. That great man loved law, system, order; had great respect for the ability, patriotism and integrity of the Supreme Court of the United States, and would certainly, I think, have acquiesced in its decision made at December term, 1856, that Congress had no power to exclude slavery from the territories. His course through life warrants the conclusion that be would have urged it as a settlement of that agitation. Our affairs having reached the crisis indicated, the work of secession began. The question is: Did we have that right which we exercised in the hope that war would not follow. We proposed to quit in peace. The first authority I rely on in support of the right is a speech of Mr. Lincoln (head and leader of coercion) made in the House of Representatives on the 12th of January, 1848. He said:
Any people, anywhere, being inclined, and having the power, have the right to rise up and shake off the existing government and form a new one  that suits them better. This is a most valuable, a sacred right; a right which we hope and believe is to liberate the world. Nor is it confined to cases in which the whole people of an existing government may choose to exercise it. Any portion of such people that can may revolutionize and make their own of so much of the territory as they inhabit. More than this, a majority of any portion of such people may revolutionize, putting down a minority intermingled with or near them, who may oppose their movements. Such minority was precisely the case of the Tories of our own Revolution. It is a quality of revolutions not to go by old times or old laws, but to break up both and make new ones.There is no room for enlargement, expansion or extension of this view of Mr. Lincoln on the right of revolution in any form it may take. Mr. Rawle, an eminent jurist of Pennsylvania, who had been United States District Attorney under President Washington and had been offered by him the Attorney-Generalship of the United States, and who was a firm supporter of the administration of the elder Adams, wrote in 1825:
Having thus endeavored to delineate the general features of this peculiar and invaluable form of government, we shall conclude by adverting to the principles of its cohesion, and to the provisions it contains for its own duration and extension. The subject cannot, perhaps, be better introduced than by presenting in its own words an emphatical clause in the Constitution: “The United States shall guarantee to every State in the Union a republican form of government, shall protect each of them against invasion, and on application of the Legislature, or of the Executive when the Legislature cannot be convened, against domestic violence.” The Union is an association of the people of republics: its preservation is calculated to depend on the preservation of these republics. The principle of preservation, although certainly the wisest and best, is not essential to the being of a republic, but to continue a member of the Union it must be so presumed, and therefore the guarantee must be so construed. It depends on the State itself to retain or abolish the principle of representation, because it depends on itself whether it will continue a member of the Union. To deny this right would be inconsistent with the principles on which our political systems are founded, which is that the people have in all cases to determine how they will be governed. This right must be considered as an ingredient in the  original composition of the general government, which though not expressed, was understood, and the doctrine heretofore presented to the reader in regard to the indefeasible nature of personal allegiance, is so far qualified in respect to allegiance to the United States. It was observed that it was competent for a State to make a compact with its citizens, that the reciprocal obligations of protection and allegiance might cease on certain events; and it was further observed that allegiance would necessarily cease on the dissolution of the society to which it was due. The secession of a State from the Union depends on the will of the people of such State. The people alone, as we have seen, hold the power to alter the Constitution. The Constitution of the United States is, to a certain extent, incorporated into the Constitutions of the several States by the act of the people. The State Legislatures have only to perform certain organical operations in respect to it. To withdraw from the Union comes not within the general scope of their delegated authority. There must be an express provision to that effect inserted in the State Constitutions. This is not at present the case with any of them, and it would perhaps be impolitic to confide it to them. A matter so momentous ought not to be entrusted to those who would have it in their power to exercise it lightly and precipitately, upon sudden dissatisfaction or causeless jealousy, perhaps against the interests and wishes of a majority of their constituents. In the present Constitution there is no specifications of number after the first formation. It was foreseen that there would be a natural tendency to increase the number of States with the increase of population then anticipated and now so fully verified. It was also known, though it was not avowed, that a State might withdraw itself.This comes from one who was an officer under the first Administration, and familiar with the interpretation of the Constitution by its framers. Senator Wade, of Ohio (afterwards Vice President of the United States), in the United States Senate on February 23d, 1855, said: ‘Who is to be judge in the last resort of the violation of the Constitution of the United States by the enactment of a law? Who is the final arbiter, the general government or the States in their sovereignty? Why, sir, to yield that point is to yield up all the rights of the States to protect their own citizens, and to consolidate this government into a miserable despotism. I tell you, sir, whatever you may think of it, if this bill pass collision will arise between the State and Federal jurisdiction-conflicts more dangerous than all the wordy  wars which are got up in Congress. Conflicts in which the State will never yield; for the more you undertake to load them with acts like this, the greater will be their resistance.’
I said there were States in this Union whose highest tribunals had adjudged that bill to be unconstitutional, and I was one of those who believed it unconstitutional, and that under the old resolutions of 1798 and 1799 a State must not only be the judge of that, but of the remedy in such case.There was no menacing there, no stringing together of words for sound's sake, but a solid shot straight to the mark from anti-slavery quarters. In his address in 1839 before the Historical Society of New York, Mr. John Quincy Adams said: ‘With these qualifications we may admit the same right as vested in the people of every State in the Union with reference to the general government, which was exercised by the people of the united colonies with reference to the supreme head of the British Empire, of which they formed a part, and under these limitations have the people of each State in the Union a right to secede from the Confederate Union itself. Here stands the right. But the indissoluble union between the several States of this confederate nation is, after all, not in the right but in the heart. If the day should ever come (may Heaven avert it) when the affections of the people of these States shall be alienated from each other; when the paternal spirit shall give way to cold indifference, or collision of interest shall fester into hatred, the bonds of political association will not long hold together parties no longer attached by the magnetism of conciliated interest and kindly sympathies; and far better would it be for the people of these dis-United States to part in friendship than to be held together by constraint. Then will be time for reverting to the precedents which occurred at the formation and adoption of the Constitution, to form a more perfect union by dissolving that which could no longer bind, and to leave the separated parts to be reunited by the law of political gravitation to the centre.’ Acting upon this principle, the Legislature of Massachusetts, the home of Mr. Adams, in 1844, resolved ‘that the project of the annexation of Texas, unless arrested on the threshold, may drive these States into a dissolution of the Union.’ On the same subject on February 22, 1845, it resolved, * * * ‘and as the powers of legislation granted in the Constitution of the United States to Congress do not embrace the case of the admission of a foreign State or foreign territory by legislation into the Union, such  act of admission would have no binding force whatever on the people of Massachusetts.’ Here we have the unequivocal assertion of the right to secede. In 1814, on the call of Massachusetts, several of the New England States met in convention in Hartford and promulgated the following:
It is as much the duty of State authorities to watch over the rights reserved, as of the United States to exercise the powers which are delegated. In cases of deliberate, dangerous and palpable infraction of the constitutions affecting the sovereignty of the people, it is not only the right but the duty of such State to interpose its authority for their protection in the manner best calculated to secure that end. When emergencies occur, which are either beyond the reach of the judicial tribunals, or too pressing to admit of the delay incident to their forms, States which have no common umpire must be their own judges and execute their own decisions.We, of the South, were watching over not only our reserved rights, but also those guaranteed to us as well. We had the deliberate, dangerous and palpable infraction of the Constitution. Emergencies had reached beyond the cure of judicial tribunals, for the ‘originally small party’ positively refused to recognize and obey the courts, and the time had come when we might, as the Hartford convention said we had the right to do, become our own judges and execute our own decisions. The principles set forth by that convention were signed by a number of the leading men of that day, and amongst them Nathan Dane, founder of the professorship of law in the Cambridge University, and who was author of the ordinance for the government of the Northwestern Territory in 1787. He, like Rawle, understood what was meant by the powers of the Constitution. He lived in their day and with them, and we may regard his utterances as an authoritative construction of the instrument. On the 9th of November, 1860, Horace Greeley wrote: ‘The telegraph informs us that most of the cotton States are meditating a withdrawal from the Union because of Lincoln's election. Very well, they have a right to meditate, and meditation is a profitable employment of leisure. We have a chronic, invincible disbelief in disunion as a remedy for either Northern or Southern grievances. We cannot see any necessary connection between the alleged disease and the ultra heroic remedy. Still we say, if any one meditates disunion  let him do so unmolested. That was a base and hypocritic row that was raised at Southern dictation about the ears of John Quincy Adams, because he presented a petition for the dissolution of the Union. The petitioner had a right to make the request, it was the member's duty to present it, and now if the Cotton States consider the value of the Union debatable, we maintain their perfect right to discuss it. Nay, we hold with Jefferson to the inalienable right of communities to alter or abolish forms of government that have become oppressive or injurious, and if the Cotton States decide that they can do better out of the Union than in it, we insist on telling them go in peace. The right to secede may be a revolutionary one, but it exists nevertheless, and we do not see how one party has a right to do what another party has a right to prevent. We must ever resist the asserted right of any State to remain in the Union and nullify or defy the laws thereof. To withdraw from the Union is quite another matter. And whenever a considerable section of our Union shall deliberately resolve to go out, we shall resist all coercive measures designed to keep it in. We hope never to live in a Republic whereof one section is pinned to the residue by bayonets. * * * Let the people reflect, deliberate, then vote, and let the act of secession be the echo of an unmistakable popular fiat. A judgment thus rendered, a demand for separation so backed, would either be acquiesced in without the effusion of blood, or those who rushed upon the carnage to defy and defeat it would place themselves clearly in the wrong.’ Judge Story, in his commentaries on the Constitution, says: ‘The obvious deductions which may be, and indeed have been drawn from considering the Constitution as a compact between the States, are that it operates as a mere treaty or convention between them, and has an obligatory force upon each State no longer than it suits its pleasure or its consent continues; that each State has a right to judge for itself in relation to the nature, extent and obligations of this instrument, without being at all bound by the interpretation of the Federal government or by that of any other State, and that each retains the power to withdraw from the confederacy and dissolve the connection, when such shall be its choice, and may suspend the operations of the Federal government and nullify its acts within its own territorial limits whenever, in its own opinion, the exigency of the case may require. These conclusions may not always be avowed, but they flow naturally from the doctrines which we have under consideration.’  Judge Tucker, professor of law in the University of William and Mary in Virginia, and one of the earliest commentators on the Constitution, in 1803, wrote ‘the Constitution of the United States, then, being that instrument by which the Federal government hath been created, its powers defined and limited, and the duties and functions of its several departments prescribed, the government thus established may be pronounced to be a confederate republic, composed of several independent and sovereign democratic States united for their common defense and security against foreign nations, and for purposes of harmony and mutual intercourse between each other, each State retaining an entire liberty of exercising, as it thinks proper, all those parts of its sovereignty which are not mentioned in the Constitution or act of union as parts that ought to be exercised in common. In becoming a member of the Federal alliance, established between the American States by the articles of confederation, she expressly retained her sovereignty and independence. The constraint put upon the exercise of that sovereignty by these articles did not destroy its existence.’
The Federal government, then, appears to be the organ through which the united republics communicate with foreign nations and with each other. Their submission to its operation is voluntary; its councils, its engagements, its authority are theirs, modified and united. Its authority is an emanation from theirs, not a flame in which they have been consumed, nor a vortex in which they are swallowed up. Each is still a perfect State, still sovereign, still independent and still capable, should occasion require, to resume the exercise of its functions as such in the most unlimited extent.In speaking of our separation from Great Britain, Chancellor Kent says: ‘The principle of self-preservation and the right of every community to freedom and happiness gave sanction to this separation. When the government established over any people becomes incompetent to fulfill its purposes, or destructive to the essential ends for which it was instituted, it is the right of the people, founded on the law of nature and the reason of mankind, and supported by the soundest authority and some illustrious precedents, to throw off such government, and provide new guards for their future safety.’ With a single exception I have confined my citations of authority to the Northern anti-slavery States, the home of the ‘originally small party.’ No Southern man, no slaveholder, ever more clearly announced and advocated the sovereignty of the States, or that the Constitution was a compact between the States, or that one party  could not violate it in one or more particulars, and require or expect the other to observe the residue. No stronger argument can be made that the Constitution is a whole, and, to be binding on one side, must be obeyed as a whole by the other. The Constitution was the chain that linked the States in union; the breaking of one link dissolved the tie. The authorities all tend to the one inevitable conclusion, that the Union exists alone by the Constitution, and its observance in every particular. Being the terms of union, one party may not be permitted to violate it in any particular, and insist on its observance by the other as to any of its terms, whatever they may be. The right to its enforcement as a whole, or its rejection as such, is inalienable and indestructible. In the investigation of the question, my trouble has not been in finding authority of the highest and clearest and most convincing character. It has been in avoiding its multiplicity. I have relied on testimony of those not at all in sympathy with the institution of slavery, passing by the opinions and utterances of Southern statesmen and jurists. Under the condition of things, as slightly, and but slightly, portrayed in this address, the Southern States began the work of secession and organizing a new government; they hoped, as they rightfully might, that they would not be interfered with, that there would be no war. In this they were mistaken, the ‘originally small party,’ which had then come into power, ordered the relief squadron with eleven ships, carrying 285 guns and 2,400 men, from New York and Norfolk to reinforce Fort Sumpter, peaceably if permitted, forcibly if they must. This was of itself an act of war. After several attempts and failures on the part of General Beauregard to have some understanding with Major Anderson, seeing that unless he took action his forces would be exposed in front and rear and perhaps destroyed for usefulness, he fired the first gun of the war. This he did in self-defence. He was in command of forces of a government foreign to that of the United States. The harbor of Charleston belonged to the Confederate States, or rather to the independent government of South Carolina. Being then the property of another government, there was no authority vesting with or in the government at Washington to interfere with it. It was that government's duty to withdraw its troops, at least when demand was made by General Beauregard. Failing to do so, it became his imperative duty to take the necessary steps to remove them, and  to resort to such force, mild or violent, as would bring about that removal. It became necessary to strike the first blow—that blow was in self-defence. The overt act on the part of the United States justified it. Neither nation nor individual is required to wait until stricken after the assailant has ussumed the attitude of offence with the present ability to strike. The squadron was ordered to Fort Sumter to attack; the order will bear no other interpretation. There can be no authority to order the reinforcement of a foreign port in times of peace and with hostile demonstrations. That was an act of war; was the first assault, the inauguration of the war by the United States. If ever there was a case of pure, unmitigated, unmixed and positive justification and self-defence, the law and the testimony mark that case for the Confederate government and Confederate soldier. We yielded to the logic of force. The right still lives. A new government has been built upon the downfall of the old ones. We have promised our allegiance to it. We will keep the faith plighted ‘at all hazards to the last extremity so long as the Constitution is respected.’ The element of evil and discord has been removed. Old things have passed away, and there will be, we venture to hope, no other cause for sectional jealousy. Our devotion to the Constitution at all times; our conduct as soldiers for four years, battling from field to field, from time to time holding in check one million five hundred thousand soldiers with six hundred thousand give assurance that we will always be worthy citizens of a constitutional Union, and may be confidently relied on in times of need. I know that in many things I have repeated an often told story, but, in the language of Mr. Webster, ‘to state things a thousand times is not enough in these days of misrepresentation, for there are persons whose consciences, it would seem, lead them to consider it their duty to deny, misrepresent, and cover up truths.’ In this effort, my purpose and desire have been to awaken the Southern man and woman to the importance of having their children study our lost cause from constitutional, legal and historical standpoints, that they be not misled. It is time we were seeing after their school-books ourselves, and not trusting too much to others. Our cause was worth all we sacrificed to it. Though lost, it deserves vindication. Its defence by our arms at least checked centralization. Understanding the principle of self-government, for which  our comrades battled and died, our children will stand at their graves with love, admiration and approval of their course, and offer up the prayer, ‘God bless and perpetuate their memories.’ I am thankful for this opportunity and this occasion to defend the right.
The blue and the gray United. The Chickamauga Memorial Association.In December last a patriotic movement, which is enlisting warm and general interest, was inaugurated in Washington, D. C., to organize a joint memorial association of Union and Confederate veterans, to acquire and preserve the battlefield of Chickamauga and mark it with suitable tablets and monuments. Its claims were earnestly pressed in a communication (which is herewith reproduced) to the Cincinnati Commercial Gazette of December 8th last, from General H. V. Boynton, of Washington, D. C., whose efforts towards organization have since been untiring: The idea originated at the recent reunion of the Society of the Army of the Cumberland at Chicago. A committee was appointed to take the matter into consideration and report to the Society next September at its meeting at Chattanooga. A conference will soon be held at Washington between representatives of that committee and ex-Confederate officers who served on that field, with a view of considering a plan and taking immediate preliminary steps toward its accomplishment. Some of the most distinguished of these officers are now in Congress or the Departments. Those who have thus far considered the matter have in mind an organization formed after the general plan of the Gettysburg Memorial Association, only differing from it in any essential feature in its being a joint association of both Union and Confederate veterans, and in having all States, North and South, concerned in the project that had troops engaged on that field, provided they make appropriations to mark the positions of their soldiers with appropriate monuments or tablets. There is no other great battlefield of the war where Northern and Southern veterans could meet harmoniously and with equal satisfaction to preserve the field of their magnificent fighting. The Union army fought there for Chattanooga and won it. The Confederate  army held the field. Its preservation as one of the great historical fields of the war would signify for both sides, more than anything else, the indelible marking of the theater upon which each of the two armies engaged performed as stubborn, brilliant, and bloody fighting as was done upon any of the great battlefields of the war. The project is based upon the belief that the time has fully come when the participants in the great battles of our civil war can, while retaining and freely expressing their own views of all questions connected with the war, still study its notable battles purely as military movements. There is no other general enagagement in which the percentage of losses for each army was so great. There was no engagement in the great battles of modern Europe where the proportionate losses were as great as those of both sides at Chickamauga. The total loss of each army was over twenty-five per cent. of all engaged. General Longstreet's loss, chiefly incurred in four hours of one day's fighting, was thirty-six per cent. To illustrate this feature of the project, a brief recapitulation of facts heretofore stated in this correspondence will amply suffice:
The casualties in Jackson's brigade of Cleburne's division, which assaulted on Baird's front, was thirty-five per cent., while the Fifth Georgia of that brigade lost fifty-five per cent., and the First Confederate Regulars forty-three per cent. Gregg's brigade, of Buckner's corps, lost 653 out of 1,425. Helm's Kentucky brigade, on the Union left, lost seventy-five per cent. of its strength. Bate's brigade lost seven officers killed and sixty-one officers wounded, and the total casualties were 607 out of 1,316. All his field officers except three were killed or wounded. The losses in Govan's brigade, of Walker's corps, exceeded fifty per cent. Deas, who fought in front of Steadman's assault, lost 745 out of 1,942. Walthall, of Walker, lost 705 out of 1,727. On the Union side, Steadman in four hours lost 1,787 out of 3,700, and all were killed and wounded but one. Brannan's division had 4,998 engaged. Its casualties were 2,174, or thirty-eight per cent. The loss in Van DerVeer's brigade, of this division, in four regiments and one battery, was 840 out of 1,788 engaged, or forty-nine per cent. Croxton's brigade, of the same division, made up of five regiments, lost 938. Of Van DerVeer's regiments, the Ninth Ohio lost fifty per cent., the Thirty-fifth Ohio a small fraction less than fifty per cent., the Second Minnesota 192, or exactly fifty per cent., and the Eighty-seventh Indiana about half of its number. General Wood lost 1,070 in two brigades.These figures become the more significant when compared with  the statement of losses in the world's noted battles. General Wheeler, the distinguished Confederate cavalry commander, thus vividly presented this question at the gathering of the Society of the Army of the Cumberland and Confederates at Chattanooga in 1881:
Waterloo was one of the most desperate and bloody fields chronicled in European history, yet Wellington's casualties were less than twelve per cent., his losses being 2,432 killed and 9,528 wounded out of 90,000 men; while at Shiloh, the first great battle in which General Grant was engaged, one side lost in killed and wounded 9,740 out of 33,000, while their opponents reported their killed and wounded 9,616, making the casualties about thirty per cent. At the great battle of Wagram Napoleon lost but about five per cent. At Wurzburg the French lost but three and a half per cent., and yet the army gave up the field and retreated to the Rhine. At Racour Marshal Saxe lost but two and a half per cent. At Zurich Massena lost but eight per cent. At Lagriz Frederick lost but six and a half per cent. At Malplaquet Marlborough lost but ten per cent., and at Ramillies the same intrepid commander lost but six per cent. At Contras Henry of Navarre was reported as cut to pieces, yet his loss was less than ten per cent. At Lodi Napoleon lost one and one-fourth per cent. At Valmy Frederick lost but three per cent., and at the great battles of Marengo and Austerlitz, sanguinary as they were, Napoleon lost an average of less than fourteen and a half per cent. At Magenta and Solferino, in 1859, the average loss of both armies was less than nine per cent. At Koniggratz, in 1866, it was six per cent. At Worth, Specheran, Mars la Tour, Gravelotte and Sedan, in 1870, the average loss was twelve per cent. At Linden General Moreau lost but four per cent., and the Archduke John lost but seven per cent. in killed and wounded. Americans can scarcely call this a lively skirmish. At Perryville, Murfreesboro, Chickamauga, Atlanta, Gettysburg, Missionary Ridge, the Wilderness, and Spotsylvania, the loss frequently reached and sometimes exceeded forty per cent., and the average of killed and wounded, on one side or the other, was over thirty per cent.And when it is considered that this degree of bitter fighting was persistently maintained by both sides throughout the two entire days without any defensive works deserving of the name, and for the most part without any at all, except as the natural features of the ground supplied them in part to the Union side, it is readily seen that there is no other field of the war which more fully illustrates the indomitable courage and all the varied fighting qualities of the American  veteran. A large number of organizations on both sides in that battle came out of it with a loss of every other man who entered it killed or wounded. The assaults on the Confederate side were without parallel in the war. Longstreet's charge at Gettysburg was a single effort. But Longstreet's entire wing at Chickamauga assaulted time and again on far more difficult ground than the slopes of Cemetery Hill. There were three general assaults which each deserve to rank with Pickett's charge, while the Union defence of Horseshoe Ridge is without parallel in the war. So thin a line of heroes never before successfully withstood such tremendous assaults. Of the whole battle, from opening to close, there was never truer thing written than General Hindman's words in regard to his conflict with Granger's troops: ‘I have never known Federal troops to fight so well. It is just to say, also, that I never saw Confederate soldiers fight better.’ And Kershaw, of Longstreet's Virginia troops, who had seen all the fighting in the Army of Northern Virginia, said of one of the Confederate assaults which Brannan repulsed: ‘This was one of the heaviest attacks of the war on a single point.’ Surely the ground of such fighting deserves to be preserved for pilgrimages and historic study. To illustrate the attainments of soldierly endeavor with which the veterans of each army distinguished themselves in our war, there is no spot of fighting ground in which each can take a greater pride. It is a field where no material changes have occurred since the battle. The roads and farm clearings, the wood and the farm-houses remain almost the same. The necessary work of restoration would consist only in clearing out underbrush at a few points. A brief statement of the organization and purposes of the Gettysburg Memorial Association will aid in indicating the general outlines of a plan which will apply, with modifications to be mentioned, to the field of Chickamauga: The Gettysburg Battlefield Memorial Association was formed for the purpose of holding and preserving the battle-grounds of Gettysburg, with their natural and artificial defences, and perpetuate the same, with such memorial structures as might be erected thereon in commemoration of the heroic deeds and achievements of the actors in that great contest. It was incorporated by act of the General Assembly of Pennsylvania, approved April 30, 1864, by which act, and a supplement thereto, approved April 24, 1866, ample powers and authority are conferred for the accomplishment of its purposes, including the purchase of  lands, laying out of roads and avenues, the erection of suitable memorial structures, etc. The property of the Association ‘shall not be subject to attachment or execution, and the lands acquired for the purpose of said Association, with its personal property and the improvements and appurtenances, shall be forever exempt from taxation and also from the payment of an enrollment tax.’ The Association is managed by a President and Board of twenty-one Directors, elected annually by the members, together with the ex-officio Directors from States contributing to its support. The membership fee is ten dollars, entitling the party to a handsome steel-plated engraved certificate, a vote in person or by proxy in the election of officers of the Association, and participation in its general management. A large majority of the certificates of membership are now held by veterans and Posts of the Grand Army of the Republic, who thereby control the franchises of the Association. Its aims and purposes are national, with a membership widely scattered over different States. By the charter the Governor of Pennsylvania is made ex-officio President of the Association, and the Governors of such States as shall, by legislative appropriation, contribute funds for its support are made ex-officio members of the Board of Directors, with power (if unable to be present) to substitute, under the official seal of the State, some one of its citizens to represent the State in the meetings of this Board. In furtherance of its design, the Association, from time to time, as funds in the treasury justified, has purchased land, and now holds in fee simple nearly five hundred acres, embracing the grove where General Reynolds fell, the two Round Tops, the Wheat Field, East Cemetery Hill, Culp's Hill, the entire Union line of battle from Cemetery Hill to Round Top, the Union line of battle from Fairfield road to Mummasburg road, etc. It has also the care and custody of about forty acres of land owned by General Crawford, including the ‘Devil's Den’ and the ground lying between the Wheat Field and the Round Tops. About thirteen miles of driveway along the Union lines, reaching various points of interest, have been constructed, a large portion of which is substantially inclosed with wire fence. In the case of Chickamauga the incorporation of the Association would be under the laws of Georgia. The Governors of each State that might co-operate would be members of the Board of Directors. In the Union army eleven States had troops in the battle, besides the forces of the regular army. In the Confederate army every Confederate State and Kentucky and Missouri were represented.  The Union army had one hundred and ninety-five separate organizations on the field, of which thirty-six were batteries. The Confederate army had two hundred and seventy-four organizations, of which fifty were batteries. The Confederate regulars were also represented by six organizations. These were divided among the States as follows: Union—Illinois, 36; Indiana, 42; Kansas, 2; Kentucky, 18; Michigan, 8; Minnesota, 2; Missouri, 3; Ohio, 56; Pennsylvania, 7; Wisconsin, 9; Tennessee, 2; United States regulars, 9. Confederate—Alabama, 43; Arkansas, 17; Florida, 7; Georgia, 35; Kentucky, 7; Louisiana, 13; Mississippi, 21; Missouri, 2; North Carolina, 4; South Carolina, 18; Tennessee, 68; Texas, 18; Virginia, 7; Confederate regulars, 6. The Directors of the Gettysburg Association include the Governors of the contributing Northern States and the officers of those Grand Army Posts and other like military societies which have taken part in the work. The Chickamauga Association would be a much more comprehensive organization. The incorporators would probably include two or three veterans, who were distinguished on the field, from each of the States which had troops there. If it were thought best to purchase the whole field, or such portions of it as could be obtained, the first cost to each State interested would be a trifle. The general government is also a party in interest. If the ground should be purchased, there would be no need of the present occupants changing either residence or their farm operations. It would in every sense be better to have them remain on the field. There might be remission of taxes, or proper slight annual payments as return for the limitations upon materially changing the natural features which might be necessary. But all these will be matters of discussion at the forthcoming conference. In any view, the movement cannot but prove of great advantage to all present owners. Once established, and taken in connection with the scenes of deepest military interest about Chattanooga—where the grandest spectacular battles of the war raged for three days—these fields would soon become a point of national resort; and no better place to study the fighting powers of American soldiers, or to become possessed with a comprehensive knowledge of some of the most brilliant deeds of arms in the story of wars, can anywhere be found.
H. V. B.
The preceding plan, which is copied after the organization for the  battlefield of Gettysburg, is meeting with general favor with numerous prominent Union and ex-Confederate officers. The following are among the letters of commendation received by General Boynton: Senator Walthall, of Mississippi, commanded a brigade in Liddell's division of Walker's corps, and fought brilliantly with the forces which opened the battle on the Union left on Saturday, and with those who were engaged to the last on the Union left on Sunday. He writes as follows:
Letter from General Walthall.
U. S. Senate, Washington, D. C., December 19, 1888.my dear Sir,—I have received your note, inclosing the outline of an organization proposed for the purpose of acquiring and preserving the battlefield of Chickamauga, and asking some expression from me on the subject. I agree with you that it is most desirable to preserve and mark this historic field, and approve the general features of the plan proposed. If I can contribute in any way to the success of the project I will be glad to do so. There were twenty-one Mississippi regiments engaged at Chickamauga, five of them under my command, and I am anxious that all these troops, as indeed all others, should occupy their proper place in the history of this great battle. Very truly yours,
General H. V. Boynton:
General H. V. Boynton:
Letter from Senator Gibson.Senator Randall Gibson was first in command of two regiments of Louisiana troops, but after the wounding of General Adams, commanded the latter's brigade of Breckinridge's division in the brilliant charge around the Union left on Sunday, which, for a time, until met by Van DerVeer, seriously threatened the overthrow of that wing of the Union army. General Gibson says:
United States Senate, Washington, D. C., December 15, 1888.my dear General—I am in receipt of your favor of the 10th instant, inclosing a printed letter proposing the organization of an  association of the officers of the two armies, who were engaged in the battle of Chickamauga, for preserving the battle lines and marking the main points on the field with suitable monuments. I will be very glad to aid you so far as I can in this work, and to furnish whatever information I may possess of the position of the division (Breckinridge's) to which I belonged. I return the newspaper slip. Yours faithfully,
Letter from representative Wheeler.No one in the Army of the Cumberland need be told who General Wheeler is, for either in fact or in rumor, and generally the former, he was always around. He commanded Bragg's cavalry corps at Chickamauga. He writes:
House of Representatives, U. S., Washington, D. C., December 12, 1888.my dear General,—Pray accept my acknowledgements of the compliment involved in your implied suggestion that I might add to or improve in any way your admirable plan for the organization of a Chickamauga Memorial Association. I think the design most desirable, and concur most heartily and cordially with your views as to why it should be carried into effect, and the plan proposed seems to me to be so perfect that I could not presume to suggest any alteration. I shall be most happy to co-operate with you in the execution of the project in any way in my power. Sincerely yours,
General H. V. Boynton:
General H. V. Boynton:
Communication from General Wright.General Marcus J. Wright has long been the agent of the War Records office for the collection of Confederate records. He commanded a brigade in Cheatham's noted division, and did hard work throughout the fight. He thus approves the plan: 
Washington, D. C., December 18, 1888.I have read with a great deal of interest General Boynton's letters suggesting an organization of Union and Confederate officers, who were engaged in the battle of Chickamauga, for the purpose of preserving the battle lines, securing a charter from the State of Georgia, and erecting historic monuments on the field. I have conversed with a number of my Confederate comrades on the subject, and it seems to meet with general approval. I fully agree with General Boynton that ‘there is no other battlefield of the war where the Northern and Southern veterans could meet so harmoniously and with equal satisfaction to preserve the field of their magnificent fighting. * * * Its preservation as one of the great historical fields of the war signify for both sides, more than anything else, the indelible marking of the theater upon which each of the two armies engaged performed as stubborn, brilliant and bloody fighting as was done upon any of the great battlefields of the war.’ General Boynton's suggestions in a general way, for a plan of co-operation between Union and Confederates, will doubtless be adopted. I am quite sure that the ex-Confederates will enter heartily into the movement.
Editor Cincinnati Commercial Gazette:
Editor Cincinnati Commercial Gazette:
Doubtless ‘the military order of America,’ a bill to incorporate which was introduced in the House of Representatives by General Joseph Wheeler, was the natural outgrowth of the preceding movement. The bill names forty-three incorporators. Thirty-seven of these are well-known citizens of the District of Columbia, one of Maine, one of New York, two of Maryland, one of Tennessee, and one commanding the United States troops at Denver, Colorado. Thirty-eight are ex-Union soldiers and five ex-Confederates. Thirty-five are members of the Loyal Legion. Eleven served as privates during the war of the rebellion, and every rank in the army, from sergeant to major-general, is represented. Section 2 of the bill provides:
That in view of the great truths that Almighty God, the ruler of nations, has cemented the United States of America in the blood of more than a hundred battles, made of enemies in war friends in  peace, and that all the participants in the late war of the rebellion will soon be mustered on the far shores of the infinite— The object, purposes and powers of said corporation shall be, and the same are hereby, limited to the erection and provision of a memorial building at the national capital that shall be a suitable monument to the valor, patriotism and fidelity of the American soldiers and sailors in the days of George Washington, and the establishment therein of a war-museum and library; to perfect the fraternization of Appomattox; perpetuate the memories of the heroic dead; strengthen the renewed bonds of union between the States; to educate their children, so as to forever insure the nation from the perils of another civil war from any cause, and to promote purposes fraternal, charitable, loyal and historical, in no sense partisan.The order, it is said, will consist first of the men who were regularly enlisted or mustered in either of the contending armies during the war; second, of the citizens who have reached a required age; third, of such patriotic citizens as desire to contribute to its success. One-half of all admission fees and fixed dues from members to go to a building fund, to be used first for the erection of the memorial building until completed, and then for the erection of the war-museum and library. It is not proposed to ask Congress for anything more than a perpetual charter, permission to erect the building upon one of the public reservations, and copies of the books sent by the publishers to the Congressional library. It is anticipated that every State in the Union will, in behalf of the men each sent to the armies, contribute liberally. The interest so just, grows more widely pervading, and is happily crystallizing into definite measures for durable and effective organization. A joint meeting of the Union and Confederate veterans, who were engaged at Chickamauga, was held in the room of the Senate Committee on Military Affairs in Washington on February 14th. The object was to devise a plan for preserving that field and marking the positions of all the forces that participated in the fight. General Henry M. Cist, of Cincinnati, chairman of the committee of the Society of the Army of the Cumberland charged with this subject, called his committee here last night. It organized and invited co-operation from the ex Confederates present. The meeting  here noticed was the result. There were present Generals Rosecrans, Baird, Reynolds, Cist, Manderson and Boykin, and Colonel Kellogg, of the Union officers, and Generals Bate of Tennessee, Colquitt of Georgia, Walthall of Mississippi, Wheeler of Alabama, Wright of Tennessee, and Colonels Bankhead of Alabama, and Morgan of Mississippi. The plan of preserving and marking the field of Chickamauga under the auspices of the joint memorial corporation representing all the States that had troops there, patterned in general after the Gettysburg Association, was cordially approved. Generals Cist and Colquitt were appointed a committee, with power to add four to their number, to prepare an act of incorporation and correspond with the leading officers from each State whose troops fought at Chickamauga, with the view of securing the proper list of incorporators. The committee met again the following day when General Cist and Senator Colquitt completed their sub-committee by adding Generals Baird, Walthall, Wheeler, Wright, Boynton, and Colonel Kellogg. It was agreed that each side should name fifty of the leading veterans of that field and some civilians, North and South, who have prominently identified themselves with the project as corporators of a joint Chickamauga Memorial Association for preserving and marking the battlefield. Senator Colquitt will then draw up articles of incorporation and obtain a charter under the laws of Georgia. Fervently is a God-speed invoked on this patriotic quickening so invested with balm and healing.
B. F. Cheatham, Major-General C. S. A.