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Official report of the history Committee of the Grand Camp C. V., Department of Virginia.

By Judge George L. Christian, Acting Chairman, October 11th, 1900.

I. The right of secession established by Northern testimony. II. the North the aggressor in bringing on the war established by their own testimony.

To the Grand Camp of Confederate Veterans of Virginia:
Some time in July last, Dr. Stuart McGuire, seeing that his father, Dr. Hunter McGuire, the able and distinguished Chairman of this Committee, was permanently disabled for longer discharging the duties devolving on him, sent his resignation to your Commander. A meeting of this Committee was promptly called, and it was the unanimous opinion of the members present that the resignation should not be accepted, but that some member of the Committee should be designated to write the Report for this meeting. I was designated by the Commander for the performance of this important task.

Fully recognizing then, as I do now, both my inability and the lack of time at my command, for the proper discharge of the duty thus assigned me, I earnestly asked to be excused from the undertaking, and nothing but my devotion, both to Dr. McGuire and the Confederate cause, could have induced me to consent to undertake a work for which I felt so poorly prepared.

Since that time, the hand that strikes no erring blow, has taken from us our able and beloved Chairman, and he now sleeps in beautiful Hollywood. I have no words to express the personal loss I feel at this calamity, and I know that you, and each of you, share with me in these feelings. Distinguished both in war and in peace, for ability and fidelity to every trust, there was nothing for which he was more distinguished than for his love and fidelity to our cause, and to those who fought to sustain it. He is lost to us as counsellor [170] and friend. He is lost to us as our leader in labor for the truth. I am here not to supply his place. No one can know, as I do, how unequal I am to such an undertaking; but I am about to try, as best I may, to carry out the plans he had formed, to obey his instructions, all unconsciously given. I persuade myself that in this attempt I shall have your kind indulgence.

South not the aggressors.

The evening before Dr. McGuire was stricken with the malady which forever incapacitated him for any earthly service, I was with him, and, as was frequently the case, we were talking of the Confederate war. In the course of the conversation, he alluded to the Report of last year, and feelingly expressed his just pride in the way you received it. He then said: ‘I am already making preparations for my next Report. I intend in that to vindicate the South from the oft-repeated charge that we were the aggressors in bringing on the war;’ and he then added: ‘This will be my last “labor of love” for the dear Southern people.’ Within less than twenty hours from the time that sentence was spoken, the splendid intellect that conceived it was a mournful wreck, and the tongue which gave it utterance was paralyzed.

My task, therefore, is to show that your Chairman was right in saying that the South was not the aggressor in bringing on the war; that, on the contrary, we did all that honorable men could do in the vain attempt to avert it—all that could be done without debasing the men and women of the South with conscious disgrace, and leaving to our children a heritage of shame; and I shall further prove that the Northern people with Abraham Lincoln at their head, brought on the war by provocation to war and by act of war; and that they were and are, therefore, directly responsible for all the multiplied woes which resulted therefrom. In doing this, I shall quote almost exclusively from Northern sources; and, whilst I cannot hope to bring to your attention at this late day anything that is new, I do hope that, by reiterating and repeating some of the old facts, I shall be able to revive impressions which may have faded from the minds of some; I shall hope, too, to reach the many, many others, especially the young, who have been the victims of false teaching with respect to these facts, or have had no opportunity, or perhaps, little disposition, to become familiar with them.


Reasons for such Papers.

It is well to set forth the reasons that actuate us in preparing such papers as these. These reasons were presented with great force in the Report of 1899. Now, as then, they are found in the fact that denials or perversions of the truth are sown broadcast all over the literature of the North. Not only does this characterize their permanent histories, as then shown with such clearness of criticism and cogency of reply, but their story-writings, their perodicals and transient newspaper publications—all, are vehicles, to a degree at least, of misrepresentation on these points. Their worthiest orators and writers have dared to tell the truth on important points, but the literature we have described is that which reaches the haphazard reader and permeates the South as well as the North. The Grand Army of the Republic contains many brave men. We have met them with arms in their hands. It contains others whose weapons of warfare are opprobrious epithets and denunciatory resolutions. This is a matter of annual display. Annually the Northern public is again misled, and its day of repentance is postponed. The men of the South are, therefore, constrained to make record of the truth. I, therefore, proceed to restate my purpose, which is to show that the South did not, and that the North did, inaugurate the war. Before proceeding to the direct discussion of this question, and because the right of a State to secede from the Union was the real issue involved in the conflict, and the proximate cause thereof, I think it pertinent to inquire particularly, in what special locality, if in any, this doctrine originated; by whom, if by either party rather than the other, it was most emphatically taught; and especially when, if in either section, the threat of the application for the dissolution of the Union was first, most frequently and most ominously heard! In pursuance of this inquiry, and adhering to our plan of calling the North to witness, let us ask first, What was the opinion of Northern and other unprejudiced writers on this question both prior to and since the war? Of course, we know that the right of a State to secede was commonly held by the statesmen of the South, and we venture the assertion that no unprejudiced mind can to-day read the history of the adoption of the Constitution and the formation of this government under it without being convinced that the right of secession as exercised by the South did exist.


The right of secession.

A distinguished English writer says:

I believe the right of secession is so clear, that if the South had wished to do so, for no better reason than that it could not bear to he beaten in an election, like a sulky school-boy out of temper at not winning a game, and had submitted the question of its right to withdraw from the Union to the decision of any court of law in Europe, she would have carried her point.

Indeed, the decision of this question might, with propriety, and doubtless would, have rested for all time on the principles enunciated in the Virginia and Kentucky resolutions of 1798 and ‘99, and the report of Mr. Madison on these resolutions. The Virginia resolutions and report were drawn by Mr. Madison, the ‘father of the Constitution;’ and those of Kentucky by Mr. Jefferson, the author of the Declaration of Independence.

These principles, emanating from these ‘master-builders,’ would, as we have said, have settled the rights of the States on this question forever, but for the fact, as Mr. Henry Cabot Lodge, of Massachusetts tells us that the North was controlled by expediency, and not by principle, in the consideration of them. These resolutions, when adopted by Virginia and Kentucky, were sent to the Northern Legislatures for their concurrence; and the distinguished Senator from Massachusetts, from whom we are quoting, says in terms, in his Life of Webster, that when the resolutions were thus submitted, ‘they were not opposed on constitutional grounds, but only on those of expediency, and hostility to the revolution they were considered to embody.’ That they did not, and could not, cite any constitutional principle as ground for their rejection, only they held that the revolution involved in their application was at that time inexpedient. In other words, it did not pay the New England States to endorse the principles of those resolutions then; but when they thought they were being oppressed by the Federal Government a few years later (as we shall presently see), they were not only ready to endorse these resolutions, but actually threatened to secede from the union.

Two pertinent questions.

But I wish to advance a step further in the argument, and to inquire–

(1)Where the doctrine of secession originated? and [173]

(2)What distinguished Northern statesmen have said of the right, both before and since the war?

Here we may properly add the clear statement of an able Northern writer, who declares his opinion (presently to be quoted in full) that at the time the Constitution was accepted by the States, there was not a man in the country who doubted the right of each and every State peaceably to withdraw, from the Union. In fact, we may at once answer our first inquiry by saying that the doctrine of secession originated in neither section, but was recognized at the first as underlying the Constitution and accepted by all parties. In confirmation of this view, but particularly with respect to the region of its earliest, most frequent, most emphatic and most threatening assertion, we proceed to show further that a recent Northern writer has used this language:

‘A popular notion is that the State-rights—secession or disunion doctrine—was originated by Calhoun, and was a South Carolina heresy. But that popular notion is wrong. According to the best information I have been able to acquire on the subject, the State-rights, or secession doctrine, was originated by Josiah Quincy, and was a Massachusetts heresy.’

This writer says Quincy first enunciated the doctrine in opposing the bill for the admission of what was then called the ‘Orleans Territory’ (now Louisiana) in 1811, when he declared, that ‘if the bill passed and that territory was admitted, the act would be subversive of the Union, and the several States would be freed from their federal bonds and obligations; and that, as it will be the right of all (the States), so it will be the duty of some, to prepare definitely for a separation, amicably if they can, violently if they must.’

Whilst this author may be right in characterizing the development of the doctrine, and fixing this right as a ‘Massachusetts heresy,’ he is wrong in fixing upon its first progenitor, and in saying that the date of its birth was as late as 1811; for in 1803, one Colonel Timothy Pickering, a Senator from Massachusetts, and Secretary of State in the Cabinet of John Adams, complaining of what he called ‘the oppressions of the aristocratic Democrats of the South,’ said, ‘I will not despair; I will rather anticipate a new Confederacy.’ * * * ‘That this can be accomplished without spilling one drop of blood I have little doubt.’ * * * ‘it must begin with Massachusetts. The proposition would be welcomed by Connecticut; and could we doubt of New Hampshire? But New York must be associated; and [174] how is her concurrence to be obtained? She must be made the center of the Confederacy. Vermont and New Jersey would follow, of course; and Rhode Island of necessity.’

The Hartford Convention.

In 1814, the Hartford Convention was called and met in consequence of the opposition of New England to the war then pending with Great Britain. Delegates were sent to this Convention by the Legislatures of Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut, and several counties and towns from other Northern States also sent representatives. This Convention, after deliberating with closed doors on the propriety of withdrawing the States represented in it from the Union, published an address, in which it said, among other things:

If the Union be destined to dissolution * * * it should, if possible, be the work of peaceable times and deliberate consent. * * * Whenever it shall appear that the causes are radical and permanent, a separation by equitable arrangement will be preferable to an alliance by constraint among nominal friends, but real enemies.

In 1839, Ex-President John Quincy Adams, in an address delivered by him in New York, said:

‘The indissoluble link of union between the people of the several States of this confederated 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, the bonds of political association will not long hold together parties no longer attracted by the magnetism of consolidated interests and kindly sympathies; and far better will it be for the people of the disunited States to part in friendship with each other than to be held together by, constraint.’

This same man presented to Congress the first petition ever presented in that body for a dissolution of the Union.

Mr. William Rawle, a distinguished lawyer and jurist of Pennsylvania, in his work on the Constitution, says this:

‘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 all our political systems are [175] founded, which is that the people have in all cases a right to determine how they will be governed.’

In the case of the Bank of Augusta against Earle, 13 Peters, 590-592, it was decided by the Supreme Court of the United States the same year in which Mr. John Quincy Adams made his speech above quoted from that—

‘They are sovereign States. * * We think it well settled that by the law of comity among nations a corporation created by one sovereign is permitted to make contracts in another, and to sue in its courts, and that the same law of comity prevails among the several sovereignties of this Union.’

Shortly after the nomination of General Taylor, a petition was actually presented in the Senate of the United States, ‘asking Congress to devise means for the dissolution of the Union.’ And the votes of Messrs. Seward, Chase and Hale were recorded in favor of its reception.

In 1844, the Legislature of Massachusetts attempted to coerce the President and Congress by the use of this language:

The project of the annexation of Texas, unless arrested on the threshold, may tend to drive these States (New England) into a dissolution of the Union.

The views of Webster.

Daniel Webster (the great ‘expounder of the Constitution,’ as he is called), notwithstanding his famous reply to Mr. Hayne, delivered in 1830, in which he so ingeniously denied the right of a State to determine for itself when its constitutional powers were infringed, and also that the Constitution was a compact between sovereign States, and contended that the power to determine the constitutionality of the laws of Congress was lodged only in the Federal Government, in a speech delivered at Capon Springs, Virginia, in 1851, used this language:

If the South were to violate any part of the Constitution intentionally and systematically, and persist in so doing from year to year, and no remedy could be had, would the North be any longer bound by the rest of it; and if the North were deliberately, habitually and of fixed purpose to disregard one part of it, would the South be bound any longer to observe its other obligations? * * * How [176] absurd is it 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! * * A bargain cannot be broken on one side and still bind the other.

He said in a speech delivered at Buffalo, N. Y., during the same year:

The question, fellow-citizens (and I put it to you 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 Union—will so enact and maintain laws to preserve that instrument—that you will not only remain in the Union yourselves, but permit your Southern brethren to remain in it and help perpetuate it.

How different is the language above quoted from Mr. Webster in his Capon Springs speech from the proposition as stated by Mr. Lincoln in his first inaugural, when he says:

One party to a contract may violate it—break it, so to speak—but does it not require all to lawfully rescind it?

But, what more could be expected of Mr. Lincoln, when it is well known that he held that the relation of the States to the Union was the same as that which the counties bear to the States of which they respectively form a part?

His reply to Hayne.

Those who deny the right of secession are fond of quoting as their authority extracts from Mr. Webster's reply to Mr. Hayne, made in 1830. It is worthy of note that the Capon Springs and Buffalo speeches were made in 1851; and these last are the product of his riper thinking—his profounder reflections. He had evidently learned much about the Constitution in the twenty-one years that had intervened, and in his maturer years, was indeed speaking as a statesman, and not only as an advocate, as he did in 1830.

But it is all important to remember that Mr. Webster nowhere ill this whole speech refers to the right of secession. His whole argument in this connection, is against the right of nullification, another and very different thing; but one which, as we will presently show, was actually being exercised by fourteen out of the sixteen Free States in 1861. [177]

In 1855, Senator Benjamin F. Wade of Ohio (afterwards, as we know one of the most notorious South-haters), said in a speech delivered in the United States Senate:

Who is the 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.

And he further said, on the 18th of December, 1860:

I do not so much blame the people of the South, because I think they have been led to believe that we to-day, the dominant party, who are about to take the reins of government, are their mortal foes, and stand ready to trample their institutions under foot.

And notwithstanding the expression of these sentiments, we know, as we say, that this man became one of the most ardent supporters of the ‘miserable despotism’ established by Abraham Lincoln, and became the second officer in that ‘despotism’ on the assassination of Mr. Lincoln.

Doctrine held Bv Greeley.

On the 9th of November, in 1860, Mr. Horace Greeley, the great apostle of the Republican party, and who was often referred to during Mr. Lincoln's administration as the ‘power behind the throne —greater than the throne itself’ —said in his paper, the New York Tribune.

‘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 alienable right of communities to alter or abolish forms of government that have become oppressive or injurious; and if Cotton States decide that they can do better out of the Union than in it, we insist on letting 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 can have a right to do what another party has a right to prevent.’

On the 17th of December, 1860, just three days before the secession of South Carolina, he again said in the Tribune: [178]

If it (the Declaration of Independence) justified the secession from the British Empire of three million of colonists in 1776, we do not see why it would not justify the secession of five millions of Southrons from the Federal Union in 1861. If we are mistaken on this point, why does not some one attempt to show wherein and why?

Again, on February the 23rd, 1861, five days after the inauguration of President Davis at Montgomery, he said:

We have repeatedly said, and we once more insist, that the great principle embodied by Jefferson in the Declaration of American Independence—that governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed—is sound and just, and that if the Slave States. the Cotton States or the Gulf States only, choose to form an independent nation, they have a clear moral right to do so.

And we know that this man was one of the foremost of our oppressors during the war, although his kindness to Mr. Davis and others after the war, we think, showed that he knew he had done wrong. And yet, he had the audacity (and may we not justly add mendacity, too?) to say, after the war, that he never at any moment of his life had ‘imagined that a single State, or a dozen States, could rightfully dissolve the Union.’ Comment is surely unnecessary.

On November the 9th, 1860, the New York Herald said:

Each State is organized as a complete government, holding the purse and wielding the sword; possessing the right to break the tie of the confederation as a nation might break a treaty, and to repel coercion as a nation might repel invasion. * * * Coercion, if it were possible, is out of the question.

Both President Buchanan and his Attorney-General, the afterwards famous Edwin M. Stanton, decided at the same time that there was no power under the Constitution to coerce a seceding State.

Sentiment in the North.

But this ‘Massachusetts heresy,’ as the writer before quoted from calls the right of secession, was not only entertained, as we have shown, at the North before the war, but has been expressed in the same section in no uncertain terms long since the war. In an article by Benjamin J. Williams, Esq., a distinguished writer of Massachusetts, entitled ‘Died for Their State,’ and published in the Lowell Sun on June 5th, 1886, he says, among other things: [179]

When the original thirteen Colonies threw off their allegiance to Great Britain, they became independent States, independent of her and of each other. * * * The recognition was of the States separately, each by name, in the treaty of peace which terminated the war of the Revolution. And that this separate recognition was deliberate and intentional, with the distinct object of recognizing the States as separate sovereignties, and not as one nation, will sufficiently appear by reference to the sixth volume of Bancroft's History of the United States. The Articles of Confederation between the States declared, that “each State retains its sovereignty, freedom and independence.” And the Constitution of the United States, which immediately followed, was first adopted by the States in convention, each State acting for itself, in its sovereign and independent capacity, through a convention of its people. And it was by this ratification that the Constitution was established, to use its own words, “between the States so ratifying the same.” It is, then, a compact between the States as sovereigns, and the Union created by it is a federal partnership of States, the Federal Government being their common agent for the transaction of the Federal business within the limits of the delegated powers.

Law of co-partnerships.

This able writer then illustrates the compact between the States by the principles of law governing ordinary co-partnerships, just as Mr. Webster did. And he then says:

Now, if a partnership between persons is purely voluntary, and subject to the will of its members severally, how much more so is one between sovereign States? and it follows that, just as each, separately, in the exercise of its sovereign will, entered the Union, so may it separately, in the exercise of that will, withdraw therefrom. And further, the Constitution being a compact, which the States are parties “having no common judge,” “ each party has an equal right to judge for itself, as well of infractions as of the mode and measure of redress,” as declared by Mr. Jefferson and Mr. Madison in the celebrated resolutions of ‘98, and the right of secession irresistibly follows.

But aside from the doctrine either of partnership or compact, upon the ground of State sovereignty pure and simple, does the right of State secession impregnably rest.


We have quoted thus fully from this writer not only because he is a Northern man, but because he has stated both the facts and the principles underlying the formation of the Union, and the rights of the States therein, with an accuracy, clearness and force, that cannot be surpassed.

But again: In his life of Webster, published in 1889, Mr. Henry Cabot Lodge, from whom we have before quoted, and at this time one of the distinguished senators from Massachusetts, uses this language in speaking of Mr. Webster's reply to Mr. Hayne. He says:

‘The weak places in his (Webster's) armor were historical in their nature. It was probably necessary (at all events Mr. Webster felt it to be so) to argue that the Constitution at the outset was not a compact between the States, but a national instrument, and to distinguish the cases of Virginia and Kentucky in 1799, and of New England in 1814, front that of South Carolina in 1830. The former point he touched upon lightly; the latter he discussed ably, eloquently and at length. Unfortunately the facts wear against him in both instances.’

And in this connection, Mr. Lodge then uses this language:

‘When the Constitution was adopted by the votes of the States at Philadelphia, and accepted by the votes of the States in popular convention, it is safe to say that there was not a man in the country, from Washington and Hamilton on the one side, to George Clinton and George Mason on the other, who regarded the new system as anything but an experiment entered into by the States, and from which each and every Stale had the right peaceably to withdraw.—a right which was very likely to be exercised.’

Mr. James C. Carter, now of New York, but a native of New England, and perhaps the most distinguished lawyer in this country to-day, in a speech delivered by him at the University of Virginia, in 1898, said:

I may hazard the opinion that if the question had been made, not in 1860, but in 1788, immediately after the adoption of the Constitution, whether the Union as formed by that instrument could lawfully treat the secession of a State as rebellion, and suppress it by force, few of those who participated in forming that instrument would have answered in the affirmative.


North's Attitude since the war.

And we should never forget this pregnant and, we think, conclusive fact in regard to this question, namely: the conduct of the North after the war in regard to Mr. Davis, General Lee, and others of our leaders. As is well known, Mr. Davis was indicted three times in their own courts upon charges which directly and necessarily involved a decision of the right of a State to secede from the Union. Immediately on the finding of these indictments, he (through his eminent Northern as well as Southern counsel), appeared at the bar of the court and demanded a speedy trial, in order that he might judicially vindicate his course and that of his people before the world. This right of trial was postponed by the Federal Government for nearly three years. During two of these years he was confined in a casemate at Fortress Monroe and subjected to indignities and tortures, by which it was attempted to break the spirit of the distinguished captive; and at the same time to degrade the people whom he represented, and for whom he was a vicarious sufferer. It is hardly necessary to say that this conduct is to-day universally regarded as not only unworthy of the representatives of the government which held Mr. Davis as its prisoner, but that it has made a page in its history of which it ought to be, and we believe is, ashamed.

When at last the Government consented to try the case, it declined to meet the real question involved, in its own chosen tribunal; and having been advised by the best lawyers and statesmen at the North, that the decision must be against the North and in favor of the South, in order to evade the issue, the Chief Justice himself suggested a technical bar to the prosecution, which was adopted and the cases dismissed. The South was entirely in the power of the North, and could do nothing but accept this, their own virtual confession that they were wrong and that we were right.

Cruel, wicked, relentless war.

And so we say, our comrades, that just because the States of the South did, in the most regular and deliberate way, exercise their constitutional and legal right to withdraw from a compact which they had never violated but which the Northern States had confessedly violated time and again, a right which, as we have seen, was not only recognized by the leading statesmen of the North, but which it had threatened on several occasions to put into execution—we say, [182] just because the Southern States did take this perfectly legal step in a perfectly legal way, these same people of the North, with Abraham Lincoln at their head, proceeded, as we shall presently show, without warrant of law or justice, to inaugurate and wage against the South one of the most cruel, wicked and relentless wars of which history furnishes any record or parallel. Is there any wonder, then, that the representatives of the Grand Army of the Republic would have us be silent about the facts which we have referred to, and not teach the truths of this history to our children, when we thus condemn them out of their own mouths.

But we come now to consider, who were the agressors who inaugurated this wicked war

We think it important to make this inquiry, for the reasons already given and because we apprehend, there is a common impression, that inasmuch as the South fired the first gun at Fort Sumter, it really thereby brought on the war, and was hence responsible for the direful consequences which followed the firing of that first shot. Nothing could be further from the truth. Mr. Hallam, in his Constitutional History of England, states a universally recognized principle, when he says:

‘The aggressor in a war (that is, he who begins it) is not the first who uses forces, but the first who renders force necessary.’

Now which side, according to this high authority, was the aggressor in this conflict? Which side was it that rendered the first blow necessary?

What Mr. Stephens says.

Says Mr. Stephens, in his ‘War Between the States:’ ‘I maintain that it (the war) was inaugurated and begun, though no blow had been struck, when the hostile fleet, styled the “ Relief Squadron,” with eleven ships carrying two hundred and eighty-five guns and two thousand four hundred men, was sent out from New York and Norfolk, with orders from the authorities at Washington to reinforce Fort Sumter, peaceably if permitted, but forciblely if they must.’

He further says:

‘The war was then and there inaugurated and begun by the authorities at Washington. General Beauregard did not open fire upon Fort Sumter until this fleet was to his knowledge, very near the Harbor of Charleston, and until he had enquired of Major Anderson, [183] in command of the Fort, whether he would engage to take no part in the expected blow, then coming down upon him from the approaching fleet?’

Governor Pickens and General Beauregard had been notified from Washington of the approach of this fleet, and the objects for which it was sent, but this notice did not reach them (owing to the treachery and duplicity of Mr. Lincoln and Mr. Seward, practiced on the Commissioners sent to Washington by the Confederate Government, which are enough to bring the blush of shame to the cheek of every American citizen), until the fleet had neared its destination. But Anderson refused to make any promise, and when he did this, it became necessary for Beauregard to reduce the fort as he did. Otherwise his command would have been exposed to two fires—one in front and the other in the rear.

Seward's treachery and duplicity.

I wish I had the time to give here the details of this miserable treachery and duplicity practiced on the Confederate Commissioners by Mr. Seward, with, as he says, the knowledge of Mr. Lincoln. These gentlemen had been sent to Washington, as they stated in their letter to Mr. Seward to treat with him, ‘with a view to a speedy adjustment of all questions growing out of this political separation, upon such terms of amity and good will as the respective interests, geographical contiguity and future welfare of the two nations may render necessary.’

I can only state that although Mr. Seward refused to treat with the Commissioners directly, he did so, through the medium of Justices Campbell and Nelson, of the Supreme Court of the United States; that through these intermediaries the Commissioners were given to understand that Fort Sumter would be evacuated within a few days, and they were kept under that impression up to the 7th of April, 1861, although during that interval of twenty-three days the ‘Relief Squadron’ was being put in readiness for reinforcing Sumter. And even on that date (the day after the Squadron was ordered to sail), Mr. Seward wrote Judge Campbell, ‘Faith as to Sumter full kept, wait and see,’ when he must have known that nothing was further from the truth, and as events then transpiring conclusively showed. Judge Campbell wrote two letters to Mr. Seward, setting out all the details of the deception practiced on the Commissioners through him and Justice Nelson, and asked an explanation of his conduct. But [184] no explanation was ever given, simply because there was none that could be given. And Mr. Seward's own memorandum, made by him at the time, shows that he was acting all through this matter with the knowledge and approval of Mr. Lincoln. History affords but few parallels, if any, to such base conduct on the part of those occupying the high and responsible positions then held by these men. The only excuse that can be given for this conduct, is that they regarded it as a legitimate deception to practice in at war which they had then already inaugurated.

Lincoln administration responsible.

Mr. George Lunt, of Massachusetts, in speaking of the occurences at Fort Sumter, uses this cautiously framed language, as the question of which side commenced the war is one about which the North is very sensitive. As we know, on the 7th of April, 1861, President Davis said:

With the Lincoln administration rests the responsibility of precipitating a collision and the fearful evils of protracted civil war.

And so Mr. Lunt says:

‘Whether the appearance of this fleet (the Relief Squadron), under the circumstances could be considered a pacific or hostile demonstration may be left to inference. Whether its total inaction during the fierce bombardment of the fort and its defence continued for days, and until its final surrender, justly bears the aspect of an intention to avoid the charge of aggression, and to give the whole affair the appearance of defence merely, may also be referred to the judgment of the reader.’

The question also occurs, he says—

‘Whether this sudden naval demonstration was not a palpable violation of the promised “faith as to Sumter fully kept,” as to be an unmistakable menace of aggression, if not absolute aggression itself.’

And he further says:

It should also be considered that when the fleet came to anchor off Charleston bar, it was well known that many other and larger vessels of war, attended by transports containing troops and surf boats, and all the necessary means of landing forces, had already sailed from Northern ports— “destination unknown” —and that very [185] considerable time must have been requisite to get this expedition ready for sea, during the period that assurances had been so repeatedly given of the evacuation of the fort.

It bore the aspect certainly of a manoeuvre, which military persons, and sometimes, metaphorically, politicians denominate “stealing a march.”

He says further on:

‘It was intended to “draw the fire” of the Confederates, and was a silent aggression, with the object of producing an active aggression from the other side.’

This very cautious statement, from this Northern writer, clearly makes the Lincoln Government the real. Aggressor, under the principle before enunciated by Mr. Hallam.

Mr. Williams, the Massachusetts writer before quoted from, says:

There was no need for war. The action of the Southern States was legal and constitutional, and history will attest that it was reluctantly taken in the last extremity, in the hope of thereby saving their whole constitutional rights and liberties from destruction by Northern aggression, which had just culminated in triumph at the Presidential election by the Union of the North against the South.

And he says further on:

‘The South was invaded, and a war of subjugation, destined to be the most gigantic which the world has ever seen, was begun by the Federal Government against the seceding States, in complete and amazing disregard of the foundation principle of its own existence. as affirmed in the Declaration of Independence, that “Government derive their just powers from the consent of the governed,” and as established by the war of the Revolution for the people of the States respectively. The South accepted the contest thus forced upon her, with the eager and resolute courage characteristic of her proud-spirited people.’

But I propose to show further that this war did not really begin with the sailing of that Northern fleet, and certainly not at Fort Sumter; and that the first blow was actually struck by John Brown and his followers, as the representatives of the abolitionists of the North, in October, 1859, at Harper's Ferriy , Va.

The John Brown raid.

A Northern writer says of the ‘John Brown Raid:’ [186]

‘Of course, a transaction so flagitious with its attendant circumstances affording such unmistakable proof of the spirit by which no small portion of the Northern population was actuated, could not but produce the profoundest impression upon the people of the South. Here was an open and armed aggression, whether clearly understood and encouraged beforehand, certainly exulted in afterwards, by persons of a very different standing from that of the chief actor in this bloody incursion in a peaceful State.’

John Brown and his associates did attempt insurrection, and did commit murder, in that attempt, upon the peaceful, harmless citizens of Virginia, and he expiated these, among the highest crimes known to the law, upon a felon's gallows. How was that execution received at the North? And in what way did the representatives of the Republican party endorse and adopt as their own the conduct of this felon in his outrages, his ‘first blow’ struck against the South? We will let the same Northern writer tell. He says:

In the tolling of bells and the firing of minute-guns upon the occasion of Brown's funeral; the meeting-houses were draped in mourning as for a hero; the prayers offered; the sermons and discourses pronounced in his honor as for a saint.

Two of Brown's accomplices were fugitives from justice, one in the State of Ohio, and the other in that of Iowa. Requisitions were issued for them by the Governor of Virginia; and the Governor of each of these Northern States refused to surrender the criminal, thus making themselves, and the people they represented, to a degree at least, particeps criminis. And the newspapers have recently informed us, that the present Chief Magistrate of this nation, and the head of the same party, which deified John Brown, and approved of his crimes, has visited and stood ‘uncovered’ at his grave, as if he still recognized him as the ‘forerunner’ of him whom they term the ‘Savior of the Country:’ so we regard, and rightly regard, his attempted insurrection, as the legitimate forerunner of the cruel, illegal and unjustifiable war inaugurated and waged by Mr. Lincoln against the South.

Aggressions of the North.

But we advance still a step further in the argument, to show from Northern authorities alone, still other aggressions of the North against the South, in bringing on this war. In his speech, entitled [187] ‘Under the flag,’ delivered in Boston, April 21st, 1861, Wendell Phillips used this language, which we are persuaded is the opinion of many misinformed people to-day, both at the North and at the South. He says:

“For thirty years the North has exhausted conciliation and compromise. They have tried every expedient; they have relinquished every right, they have sacrificed every interest, they have smothered keen sensibility to national honor, and Northern weight and supremacy in the Union; have forgotten they were the majority in numbers and in wealth, in education and in strength; have left the helm of government and the dictation of policy to the Southern States,” &c.

We propose to show, from the highest Northern sources, that so far from the above statement being true, it is exactly the opposite of the truth.

General John A. Logan, afterwards a Major-General in the Federal Army, a United States Senator and a candidate for the Vice-Presidency on the Republican ticket, in a speech delivered in the House of Representatives, on the 5th of February, 1861, uses this language:

The Abolitionists of the North have constantly warred upon Southern institutions, by incessant abuse from the pulpit, from the press, on the stump, and in the halls of Congress, denouncing them as a sin against God and man. * * * By these denunciations and lawless acts on the part of Abolition fanatics such results have been produced as to drive the people of the Southern States to a sleepless vigilance for the protection of their property and the preservation of their rights.

The Albany Argus of November 10th, 1800, said:

We sympathize with, and justify the South as far as this: their rights have been invaded to the extreme limit possible within the forms of the Constitution; and beyond this limit; their feelings have been insulted, and their interests and honor assailed by almost every possible form of denunciation and invective; and if we deemed it certain that the real animus of the Republican party could be carried into the administration of the Federal Government, and become the permanent policy of the nation, we should think that all the instincts of self preservation and of manhood, rightly impelled them to resort to revolution and a separation from the Union, and we [188] would applaud them, and wish them God-speed in the adoption of such a remedy.

The Rochester Union, two or three days later, said:

Restricting our remarks to actual violations of the Constitution, the North has led the way, and for a long period have been the sole offenders or aggressors. * * * Owing to their peculiar circumstances, the Southern States cannot retaliate upon the North without taking ground for secession,

Started by Mr. Seward

The New York Express said, on April 15th, 1861 (the day after the surrender of Sumter):

The “Irrepressible conflict” started by Mr. Seward, and endorsed by the Republican party, has at length attained to its logical foreseen result. That conflict undertaken for the sake of humanity culminates now in inhumanity itself. * * * The people of the United States, it must be borne in mind, petitioned, begged and implored these men (Lincoln, Seward. et id), who are become their accidental masters, to give them an opportunity to be heard before this unnatural strife was pushed to a bloody extreme, but their petitions were all spurned with contempt, &c.

Mr. George Lunt, a Boston lawyer, in an able work, published in 1866, entitled ‘The Origin of the Late War,’ from which we have before quoted, says of the action of the Northern people:

‘But by incessantly working on the popular mind, through every channel through which it could be possibly reached, a state of feeling was produced which led to the enactment of Personal Liberty bills by one after another of the Northern Legislative Assemblies. At length fourteen of the sixteen Free States had provided statutes which rendered any attempt to execute the fugitive slave act so difficult as to be practically impossible, and placed each of those States in an attitude of, virtual resistance to the laws of the united States.’

If these acts were not nullification, what were they?

Lincoln quoted as proof.

We propose to introduce as our last piece of evidence that, which it seems to us, should satisfy the mind of the most critical and exacting, [189] and which establishes, beyond all future cavil, which side was the aggressor in bringing on this conflict. We propose to introduce Mr. Lincoln himself. In the latest life of this remarkable man, written by Ida M. Tarbell, and published by Doubleday & McClure Co. in 1900, she introduces a statement made to her by the late Joseph Medill, editor of the Chicago Tribune, of what took place between Mr. Lincoln and a Committee of which he (Medill) was a member, sent from Chicago to Washington, to intercede with the authorities there to be relieved from sending more troops from Cook county, as was required by the new draft just then ordered, and which, as we know, produced riots in several parts of the North. The author makes Medill tell how his Committee first applied for relief to Mr. Stanton, and was refused, how they then went to Mr. Lincoln, who went with them to see Stanton again, and there listened to the reasons assigned pro and con for a change of the draft. He then says:

I shall never forget how he (lincoln) suddenly lifted his head and turned on us a black and frowning face:

“Gentlemen,” he said, in a voice full of bitterness, “After Boston, Chicago has been the chief instrument in bringing this war on the country. The Northwest has opposed the South, as New England has opposed the South. It is you who are largely responsible for making blood flow as it has. You called for war until we had it. You called for emancipation, and I have given it to you. Whatever you have asked, you have had. Now you come here begging to be let off. You ought to be ashamed of yourselves. I have a right to expect better things of you. Go home and raise your 6,000 extra men.”

And Medill adds that he was completely silenced by the truth of Lincoln's accusation, and that they went home and raised the 6,000 additional troops. We could multiply testimony of this kind almost indefinitely; but surely we have introduced enough not only to prove that the statement made by Mr. Phillips is utterly without foundation, but to show further, by the testimony of our quondam enemies themselves, that they were the aggressors from every point of view, and that the South only resisted when, as the New York Express said of it at the time, it had, ‘in self-preservation, been driven to the wall, and forced to proclaim its independence.’


Virginias efforts for peace.

We can only briefly allude to the noble efforts made by Virginia, through the ‘Peace Congress,’ to avert the conflict, and how these efforts were rejected almost with contempt by the North. Mr. Lunt, speaking of this noble action on the part of the ‘Mother of Presidents,’ as he calls Virginia, says:

It was like a firebrand suddenly presented at the portals of the Republican Magazine, and the whole energy of the radicals was at once enlisted to make it of no effect.

Several of the Northern States sent no Commissioners to this Congress at all; others, like Massachusetts, only sent them at the last moment, and then sent only such as were known to be opposed to any compromise or conciliation.

The following letter of Senator Chandler, of Michigan, indicates too clearly the feelings of the Republican party at that time to require comment. It is dated February 11th, 1861, a week after the Congress assembled, and addressed to the Governor of his State. He says:

Governor Bingham (the other Senator from Michigan) and myself telegraphed to you on Saturday, at the request of Massachusetts and New York, to send delegates to the Peace Compromise Congress. They admit that we were right and they were wrong, that no Republican State should have sent delegates, but they are here and can't get away. Ohio, Indiana and Rhode Island are caving in, and there is some danger of Illinois; and now they beg us, for God's sake to come to their rescue and save the Republican party from rupture. I hope you will send stiff-backed men or none. The whole thing was gotten up against my judgment and advice, and will end in thin smoke. Still I hope as a matter of courtesy to some of our erring brethren, that you will send the delegates.

Truly your friend,

P. S.—Some of the Manufacturing States think that a fight would be awful. Without a little blood-letting, this Union will not, in my estimation, be worth a curse.

Mr. Lunt says: [191]

If this truly eloquent and statesmanlike epistle does not express the views of the Republican managers at the time, it does at least indicate with sufficient clearness their relations towards the Peace conference and the determined purpose of the radicals to have “a fight,” and it furthermore foreshadows the actual direction given to future events.

Held out to the last.

But I cannot protract this discussion further. Suffice it to say, that Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee and Arkansas did not secede, until Mr. Lincoln had actually declared war against the seven Cotton and Gulf States, then forming the Southern Confederacy, and called on these four States to furnish their quota of the seventy-five thousand troops called for by him to coerce these States. This act, on Mr. Lincoln's part, was without any real authority of law, and nothing short of the most flagrant usurpation, Congress alone having the power to declare war under the Constitution. He refused to convene Congress to consider the grave issues then confronting the country. But when it did assemble, on the 4th of July, 1861, he tried to have his illegal usurpation validated; but Congress, although then having a Republican majority, refused to consider the resolution introduced for that purpose. The four States above named, led by Virginia, only left the Union then, after exhausting every honorable effort to remain in it, and only when they had to determine to fight with or against their sisters of the South. This was the dire alternative presented to them, and how could they hesitate longer what to do?

In the busy, bustling, practical times in which we live, it will doubtless be asked by many, and, with some show of plausibility, why we gather up, and present to the world, all this array of testimony concerning a cause, which is almost universally known as the ‘lost cause,’ and a conflict, which ended more than thirty-five years ago? Does it not, they ask, only tend to rekindle the embers of sectional strife, and can thus only do harm? You, our comrades, know that such is not our purpose or desire. Our reasons have been very briefly stated. It is the truth that constrains. The apologists for the North, using all the vehicles of falsehood, are insistent in spreading the poison; with it the antidote must go. If others attribute to us wrong motives in this matter, we are sorry, but we have no apologies to make to any such. We admit that the Confederate war is ended; that slavery and secession are forever dead, [192] and we have no desire to revive them. We recognize, too, that this whole country is one country and our country. We desire that, government and people doing that which is right, it may become in truth a glorious land, and may remain a glorious inheritance to our children and our children's children. But we believe the true way to preserve it as such an inheritance is to perpetuate in it the principles for which the Confederate soldier fought—the principles of Constitutional liberty, and of local self-government—or, as Mr. Davis puts it, ‘the rights of their sires won in the Revolution, the State sovereignty, freedom, and independence, which were left to us, as an inheritance to their posterity forever.’ This definition, a distinguished Massachusetts writer says, is ‘the whole case, and not only a statement, but a complete justification of the Confederate cause, to all who are acquainted with the origin and character of the American Union.’

Yes, we repeat, this is our country, and of it, we would say, with Virginia's dead Laureate at the Yorktown celebration:

Give us back the ties of Yorktown,
     Perish all the modern hates,
Let us stand together, brothers,
     In defiance of the Fates,
For the safety of the Union
     Is the safety of the States.

At Appomattox, the Confederate flag was furled, and we are content to let it stay so forever. There is enough of glory and sacrifice encircled in its folds, not only to enshrine it in our hearts forever; but the very trump of fame must be silenced when it ceases to proclaim the splendid achievements over which that flag floated.

Battle-field, not a forum.

But, Appomottox was not a judicial forum; it was only a battlefield, a test of physical force, where the starving remnant of the Army of Northern Virginia, ‘wearied with victory,’ surrendered to ‘overwhelming numbers and resources.’ We make no appeal from that judgment, on the issue of force. But when we see the victors in that contest, meeting year by year and using the superior means at their command, to publish to the world, that they were right and that we were wrong, in that contest, saying that we were ‘Rebels’ and ‘traitors,’ in defending our homes and firesides against their cruel invasion, that we had no legal right to withdraw from the Union, when we only asked to be let alone, and that we [193] brought on that war; we say when these, and other wicked and false charges are brought against us from year to year, and the attempt is systematically made to teach our children, that these things are true, and therefore, that we do not deserve their sympathy and respect, because of our alleged wicked and unjustifiable course in that war and in bringing it on—then it becomes our duty, not only to ourselves and our children, but to the thousands of brave men and women who gave their lives a ‘free — will offering,’ in defence of the principles for which we fought, to vindicate the justice of our cause, and to do this, we have to appeal only to the bar of truth and of justice

The truth will live.

We know the Muse of History may be, and often is, startled from her propriety for a time; but she will soon regain her equipoise. Our late enemy has unwittingly furnished the great reservoir from which the truth can be drawn, not only in what they have said about us and our cause, both before and since the war; but in the more than the one hundred volumes of the official records published under the authority of Congress. We are content to await, ‘with calm confidence,’ the results of the appeal to these sources.

We have, as already stated, in this report, attempted to vindicate our cause, by referring to testimony furnished almost entirely from the speeches and writings of our adversaries, both before and since the war. We believe we have succeeded in doing this. Nay, the judgment, both of the justice of our cause and the conduct of the war, on our part, has been written for us, and that too by the hand of a Massachusetts man. He says of us:

‘Such exalted character and achievement are not all in vain. Though the Confederacy fell as an actual physical power, she lives illustrated by them, eternally in her just cause—the cause of Constitutional liberty.’

Then, in the language of the Virginia Laureate again, we say:

Then stand up, oh my countrymen,
     And unto God give thanks
On mountains and on hillsides
     And by sloping river banks,
Thank God, that you were worthy
     Of the grand Confederate ranks.

[194] Since your last year's Report was mainly directed to the vindication of our people from the false charge that we went to war to perpetuate slavery, we have thought we could render no more valuable service in this Report, than to show—(1) That we were right on the real question involved in the contest; and (2) That notwithstanding this, and the further fact, that the South had never violated the Constitution, whilst the North had confessedly repeatedly done so; nay, that fourteen of the sixteen Free States had not only nullified, but had defied acts of Congress passed in pursuance of the Constitution, and the decisions of the Supreme Court sustaining those acts, and that the North, and not the South, had brought on the war. We believe we have established these propositions by evidence furnished by our late adversaries; and the last, by that of Mr. Lincoln himself. On this testimony, we think we can afford to rest our case. And we believe that the evidence furnished in our last Report, and in this, will establish the justice, both of our cause and of the conduct of our people in reference to the war.

Histories in our Schools.

The several histories, used in schools, were so fully discussed in our last Report, that we deem it unnecessary to add anything further on that subject. We are gratified to be able to report, that the two works, adversely criticised in our last Report, viz: Fiske's and Cooper, Estill & Lemon's Histories, respectively, have found but little favor with the School Boards of our State. This is shown by the fact, that out of the 18 counties and corporations in the State but one has adopted Fiske's, and that one has purchased a supply of Jones' History, to be used by the pupils in studying the history pertaining to the war. That Cooper, Estill & Lemon's History is now only used in six places; whilst all the other counties and corporations (with the exception of one, which uses Hansell's), use either Mrs. Lee's or Dr. Jones' Histories, or the two conjointly, the relative use of these being as follows: Lee's, 68; Jones', 25; Lee and Jones, conjointly, 17.

It will thus be seen, that the danger apprehended from the use of the two works criticised, is reduced to the minimum. But we must not be satisfied until that danger is entirely removed by the abolishment of these books from the list of those adopted for use, by our State Board of Education. We are informed by this Board, that it can do nothing in this direction pending the terms of the existing [195] contracts with the publishers of these works, which contracts expire on July 31st, 1902. But we are also informed, that under the provisions of a law passed prior to the making of these contracts, it is competent for County and City School Boards, to change the textbooks on the history of the United States whenever they deem it proper to do so. We would, therefore, urge these local boards to stop the use of the two works criticised in our last report at once.

Composed of good men.

It is also most gratifying to us to state, what you, perhaps, already know, that all three of the members of our State Board of Education, are not only native and true Virginians, but men devoted to the principles for which we fought, and that they, and each of them, stand ready to co-operate with us, as far as they can legally and properly do so, in having our children taught ‘the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth,’ in regard to the war, and the causes which led to it. We would ask for nothing more, and we should ask for nothing less, from any source.

We repeat the recommendation heretofore made, both to this Camp and to the United Confederate Veterans, that separate chairs of American history be established in all of our principal Southern Colleges, so that the youth of our land may be taught the truth as to the formation of this government, and of the principles for which their fathers fought for the establishment and maintenance of Constitutional liberty in our land.

Our attention has recently been called to the fact that in none of the histories used in our schools, is any mention made (certainly none compared with what it deserves) of the splendid services rendered our cause by the devoted and gallant band led by Colonel John S. Mosby. This organization, whilst forming a part of General Lee's Army, and at all times subject to his orders, was to all intents and purposes an independent command. We believe, that for its numbers and resources, it performed as gallant, faithful and efficient services as any other command in any part of our armies, and that no history of our cause is at all complete, that fails to give some general idea, at the least, of the deeds of devotion and daring performed by this gallant band and its intrepid leader.

Union of our fathers.

We sometimes hear (not often, it is true, but still too often) from [196] those who were once Confederate soldiers themselves, or from the children of Confederates, such expressions as—‘We are glad the South did not succeed in her struggle for independence.’ ‘We are glad that slavery is abolished,’ &c.

We wish to express our sincere sorrow and regret, that any of our people should so far forget themselves as to indulge in any such remarks. In the first place, we think they are utterly uncalled for, and in bad taste. In the second place, to some extent, they reflect upon the Confederate cause, and those who defended that cause; and in the third place, it seems to us, if our own self-respect does not forever seal our lips against such expressions, that the memories of a sacred past, the blood of the thousands and tens of thousands of those who died, the tears, the toils, the wounds, and the innumerable sacrifices of both the living and the dead, that were freely given for the success of that cause, would be an appeal against such expressions, that could not be resisted. If all that is meant by the first of these expressions is, that the speaker means to say, ‘He is glad that the ‘Union of our Fathers’ is preserved,’ then we can unite with him in rejoicing at this, if this is the ‘Union of our Fathers,’ as to which we have the gravest doubts. But be this as it may; we have never believed that the subjugation of the South or the success of the North, was either necessary, or the best way to preserve and perpetuate the ‘Union of our Fathers.’

On the secession of Mississippi, her Convention sent a Commissioner from that State to Maryland, who, at that time, it may be sure, expressed the real objects sought to be obtained by secession by the great body of the Southern people. He said:

Secession is not intended to break up the present Government, but to perpetuate it. We do not propose to go out by way of destroying the Union, as our fathers gave it to us, but we go out for the purpose of getting further guarantees and security for our rights, &c.

Might have been better.

And so we believe, that with the success of the South, the ‘Union of our Fathers,’ which the South was the principal factor in forming, and to which she was far more attached than the North, would have been restored and re-established; that in this Union the South would have been again the dominant people, the controlling power, and that its administration of the Government in that Union would have been [197] along constitutional and just lines, and not through Military Districts, attempted Confiscations, Force Bills, and other oppressive and illegal methods, such as characterized the conduct of the North for four years after the war in its alleged restoration of a Union which it denied had ever been dissolved.

As to the abolition of slavery: Whilst we know of no one in the South who does not rejoice, that this has been accomplished, we know of no one, anywhere, so lost to every sense of right and justice, as not to condemn the iniquitous way in which this was done. But we feel confident that no matter how the war had ended, it would have resulted in the freedom of slave, and as surely with the success of the South as with that of the North, although perhaps not so promptly.

We are warranted in this conclusion, from several considerations —(1) It was conclusively shown in our last Report, that we did not fight for the continuation of slavery, and that a large majority of our soldiers were non-slaveholders; (2) That our great leader, General Lee, had freed his slaves before the war, whilst General Grant held on to his until they were freed by the Emancipation Proclamation; and (3) Whilst Mr. Lincoln issued that proclamation, he said in his first inaugural:

‘I have no purpose directly or indirectly, to interfere with the institution of slavery in the States where it exists. I believe I have no lawful right to do so, and I have no inclination to do so.’

Emancipation of slaves.

With the success of the South, we believe emancipation would have followed by some method of compensation for the property rights in slaves, just as the North had received compensation for the same property, when held by it. Certainly it would not have been accomplished by putting the whites under the heel of the blacks, as was attempted by the North. In the contest between Lincoln and McClellan, in 1864, the people of the North were nearly equally divided on the issues involved in the war, Lincoln having received 2,200,000 votes in that contest, whilst McClellan received 1,800,000 (in round numbers). We know too, that Lincoln was not only a ‘minority’ President, but a big ‘minority’ President, his opponents having received a million more votes in 1860 than he received. So that, with a divided North, and a united South, on the principles for which we contended, if the South had been successful in the war, her people would have dominated and controlled this country for [198] the last thirty-five years, as they did the first seventy years of its existence, and, in our opinion, both the country and the South would have been benefited by that domination and control.

Again, think of the difference between the South being made to pay the war debt, and pensions of the North, and the latter having to pay those of the former. And again, we reason, that if the South, in all the serfdom and oppression in which she was left by the results of the war, has accomplished what she has—(she has made greater material advances in proportion than any other section)— what could she not have done, if she had been the conqueror instead of the conquered?

We simply allude to these material facts, with the hope that these, and every consideration dictated by self-respect, love of, and loyalty to, a sacred and glorious past, will prevent a repetition of the expressions of which we, as representatives of the Confederate cause and people, justly complain, and against which we earnestly protest.

Committee on Publishing a School History for Use in Our Public and Private Schools. Geo. L. Christian, Acting Chairman, R. T. Barton, Rev. B. D. Tucker, R. S. B. Smith, John W. Fulton, Carter R. Bishop, John W. Daniel, T. H. Edwards, M. W. Hazelwood, R. A. Brock, James Mann, W. H. Hurkamp, Micajah woods, Thomas Ellett, Secretary.

[199] [From the Richmond, Va., Dispatch, January 20th, 1901.]

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