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Instances of Outrage

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who arraigned Crawford in the presence of his little boys, and had borne him away from their sight to hang him. The jury took no steps, of course, to learn anything in regard to the murderers. Indeed, the act was not only justified, but, out of it, grew an organization which succeeded in whipping, banishing, and hanging over two hundred persons -three Methodist ministers included in the course of the succeeding three months, under plea of their being "Abolition emissaries," who had instigated the burning of property, and incited negroes to run away. The report of that meeting deserves repetition, in illustration of the manner in which the slave districts care for their morals and their safety:

"At a large and respectable meeting of the citi

zens of Tarrant County, convened at the Town Hall, at Fort Worth, on the 18th day of July, 1860, pursuant to previous notice, for the purpose of devising means for defending the lives and property of citizens of the county against the machinations of Abolition incendiaries, J. P. Alford was called to the chair, and J. C. Terrell was appointed Secretary. After the object of the meeting was explained by Colonel C. A. Harper, the following preamble and resolutions were unanimously adopted: "Whereas, The recent attempts made to destroy several neighboring towns by fire, the nearly total destruction of one of them, coupled with the conversation and acts of one W. H. Crawford, who was hung in this county on the 17th iust., prove conclusively to us the necessity of an organized effort to ferret out and punish Abolition incendiaries, some of whom are believed to be in our county. Therefore, to discover and punish said Abolitionists, and to secure the lives and property of our citizens, be it

"Resolved, That we endorse the action of those who hung W. H. Crawford in this county on the 17th inst., convinced as we are, from the evidence upon which he was hung, that he richly deserved his fate.

"Resolved, That a Central County Committee be appointed by the President, consisting of seven citizens, whose duty it shall be to appoint such Committees in every precinct in the county, which sub-Committees shall confer with and report to the Central ommittee the names of all suspected persons in their precincts, which persons shall be dealt with according to the pleasure of the Central Com mittee.

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It is probable that every one of the men persecuted were as innocent of offence as Crawford. "Abolition emissaries" were not necessary to instruct negroes how to firo houses. The "Abolitionists" were, without exception, men having a calling, and pursuing it peaceably; but, being Northerners, and living without holding Slaves, were proofs conclusive of their dangerous character to the "highly respectable citizens" of Texas.*

The case of Mrs. Catharine Bottsford, as published at length in the New York Tribune of March 22d, afforded the age with an evidence that even in the civilized city of Charleston, South Carolina, an intelligent, honorable, and unprotected lady could be thrown into prison and be made to suffer indignities because some person had said she had “ tampered with slaves."

Arthur Robinson, of New Orleans, publisher of the True Witness, a religious paper of the Old School Presbyterian denomination, was arrested, and thrown in prison without the usual forms of law. After laying there some time, he was taken into the criminal court for trial. The indictment, however, was so ignorantly drawn that he was set at liberty pending a second arrest. His friends managed to effect his escape up the river. He lost everything. His "crime" was, not in saying or publishing anything offensive, but a "committee" having searched his premises, found seditious" literature in his possession, and for that he was made to suffer. He would have been consigned, to State's Prison for having the Boston Liberator on his exchange list had it not been for the flaw in his first indictment, and his escape from another



* When Wigfall stated, on the floor of the United States Senate, that men were hanging from trees in

Resolved, That the members of this meeting hereby Texas for opinion's sake, he was known to tell the

pledge themselves to support said Central Committee in the discharge of their duty in dealing with Abolitionists and incendiaries.

"JAMES P. ALFORD, Chairman.

J. C. TERRELL, Secretary' "The Central Committee hereby notify all persons connected with or holding Abolition senti

truth, then, for a certainty. It will be remembered that Lovejoy, of Illinois, had in vain tried to get the case of the Methodist ministers, (one of whom was hung and others whipped) before Congress. [See Stanton's Defence of the Ministers from Reagan's Brutal Charges, pages 229-30.]

Instances of Outrage

and Suffering.

John Watt, a citizen of Michigan, was working near Vicksburg, Mississippi, in January. While under the influence of liquor a "committee" extracted from him "dangerous sentiments," and he was taken over the river into Louisiana and hung, and his body left hanging to the tree.

The first officer of the bark Indian Queen made a statement in the New York journals, March 16th, to the effect that the vessel put into St. Marks, Florida, in January-himself and his second officer both being ill of the Chagres fever. Both were sent ashore to the United States Marine Hospital at that place, for proper care, while the vessel anchored in the harbor below, to await their recovery. As soon as Florida seceded, (January 11th,) the Hospital was seized and the invalids turned out. The vessel lay at anchor about ten miles below the town. She had, as part of her crew, seven colored seamen--all able and trusty fellows. A plot was hatched to seize all these men and sell them into slavery-a judge of the Supreme (State) Court being one of the conspirators. The plot was revealed to the captain at two o'clock in the morning. He arose, hired a steamer, ran down to his vessel, and had her towed out to sea, beyond the jurisdiction of Florida. The discomfited citizens swore dreadfully over their disappointment.

The same officer stated that, a few days after the ordinance of secession was passed, a resident of St. Marks remarked that the South was wrong and the North right in the controversy. Whereupon, he was seized, stripped, whipped, and started “out of the country."

Mr. H. Turner, a New Hampshire man, had for several years, spent the winter on the plantation of Woodworth & Son, near Charleston, South Carolina. Before the Presidential election, in reply to the question of a fellow-workman, he had stated that, if he held the casting vote, it should be given for Lincoln. Two weeks after the election he was visited by two members of a "Vigilance Committee," and asked if what had been reported was true. He answered that he had made that single remark to a fellow- workman, but to no other person. A warrant for his arrest, as an incendiary and Abolitionist,

Instances of Outrage and Suffering.

was produced, and he was
taken to Charleston, to jail.
Around the jail a mob of
"citizens" gathered, demanding that the jailer
should give the prisoner up to them. It was
only dispersed by the horse patrol. He was
allowed neither food nor water. On the af
ternoon of the day succeeding his arrest, he
was taken before the "Vigilance Association
Tribunal," for examination. Confessing,
again, that he had said to the workman what
was reported, he was remanded back to jail,
to be passed over to the Criminal Court.
The "Judge" of the Tribunal treated the
prisoner with a choice lecture, chiefly com-
posed of oaths and imprecations.
He was
placed in a bare cell, where the night was
spent; and only on the morning of the sec-
ond day's confinement was he allowed food,
consisting of a small piece of black bread
and a pint of bad water. For fourteen weeks
this man lay in that wretched dungeon. At the
end of that time the son of his employer
came to the jail, and stated that his wages,
$248, still due, should be paid him, and his
release procured, if he would leave at once.
The promise was gladly given. He was ta-
ken to the steamer amid the hootings and
howlings of a mob, which made threats of
lynching. On the way to the steamer, he
called upon a watchmaker for a fine watch
and chain which he had left for repairs
before his arrest. The watchmaker bade
him, with an oath, to leave his premises.
Once on the steamer, he expected his wages,
as promised; but received nothing, and was
permitted to work his passage to New York,
where he arrived in a perfectly destitute

Captain E. W. Ryder, of the bark Julia E. Aery, and his son, James B. Ryder, as mate, were landing a cargo at Encero Mills, Camden County, Georgia, in November, 1860, when a negro came aboard the vessel with oars to sell. None being wanted, he was sent away. He paid a second visit, and some clothes were intrusted to him to wash, upon his telling that he belonged to a Dr. Nichols, living near. That afternoon five men came to the vessel, and demanded the right to search for the negro. The captain gave permission for the search, freely, but stated that


Instances of Outrage

and Suffrages.


the fellow had gone ashore, was deemed a lenient pun-
ishment-hanging was the
usual mode of treating


Instances of Outrage and Suffering.

"such scoundrels." The inhuman wretches took their prisoners to the front of the courthouse, where, both being stripped to the waist and tied to a tree, they were whippedtwenty-five blows with heavy leather thongs being administered to each. The elder Ryder, being an old man, was a terrible sufferer under the horrible infliction. After the "pun ishment" both were thrust into cells in the jail. The large crowd which witnessed the whipping enjoyed it, apparently with a real zest, as it jeered and laughed vociferously during the brutal punishment. The two men lay fourteen days in that jail, suffering exquisite tortures from their wounds. At the end of that time five men came, took them out, carried them to their vessel, and remained until the craft stood out to sea.

taking with him some clothes to wash. The five men completed the search which, it became evident to the captain, was but a cover for the "citizens" to examine his cargo, his means of resistance, &c., as well as to discover, if possible, some" Abolition literature" by which to to seize the entire crew and vessel as " dangerous to the peace of the community." The "Committee" returned on the following day, late in the evening. It had grown to fifteen in numbers, who proceeded to thoroughly ransack the vessel's hold. Every chest and bunker were overhauled. Nothing "dangerous" being found, the "Committee" passed on shore where, summoning the negroes who had been engaged in unloading the vessel, they examined them as to the conversations on the vessel. Six of them were finally most unmercifully whipped, to make them "confess." What they confessed, was not known to the captain; but, as they probably stated This instance of atrocious wrong was simanything required, the mob, it soon became ply one of several similar cases inflicted in evident, was ready for proceedings. The the same neighborhood. The civilized world captain and his son went before the "Commay be excused for doubting evidence so inmittee” and stated that, not only had no con-human; but, there is no room for disbelief versation been had, but that they had positively forbidden any unnecessary communication between his men and the negroes— that one or the other of the officers always was present, to see that orders were obeyed. This did not satisfy the "Committee," and the two were taken to the jail at Jefferson, fifteen miles away. There they were again arraigned before another "Vigilance Association," and charged with being Abolitionists -a charge which both men denied as unfounded in proof. No proof being produced, they were allowed to spend that night at a hotel. A cook (black) from another vessel, was produced on the succeeding morning, who stated that he had heard both white men say they were Republicans, and would have voted for Mr. Lincoln if an opportunity had offered. The black fellow who had taken the clothes to wash, was then brought forward, and re corroborated the statement of the other black man. This was deemed evidence conclusive to the "Committee" and the sentence of a public flogging was immediately decreed against both father and son. This

when an old man's scarred back is exhibited to the pitying eye.

We may close this revolting record with the following statement made by the Cincinnati Gazette, of May 18th:

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Nearly every day some fresh arrivals of refugees from the violence and ferocity of the New Da

homey bring to this city fresh and corroborative

proofs of the condition of affairs in the rebel States.

Many of these have come thence at the peril of their lives, and to avoid threatened death, have taken a hurried journey surrounded by thick dangers from

the madmen who now fill the South with deeds of

violence and bloodshed.


The people in that section seem to have been given up to a madness that is without parallel in the history of civilization-we had almost written barbarism. They are cut off from the news of the North, purposely blinded by their leaders as to the

movements and real power of the Government, and in their local presses receive and swallow the most outrageous falsehoods and misstatements.

"Yesterday, one William Silliman, a person of intelligence and reliability, reached this city, returning from a year's residence in Southern Mississippi. He was one of a party who, in 1860, went from this

Instances of Outrage

and Suffering.

city and engaged in the construction of the Mobile and Ohio Railroad.

Mr. Silliman, for several months past, has lived in Cupola, Itawamba County, one of the lower tier of counties, two hundred miles from New Orleans, and one hundred and sixty miles from Mobile. He says a more blood-thirsty community it would be difficult to conceive. Perfect terrorism prevails, and the wildest outrages are enacted openly by the rebels, who visit with their violence all suspected of loyalty, or withholding full adherenee to the kingdom of Jefferson Davis. Could the full history of these outrages be written, and that truthfully, many and most of its features would be deemed incredible and monstrous, belonging to another age, and certainly to another county than our own.

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The party who is suspected of hostility, or even light sympathy, with the rebellion, is at once seized. He is fortunate if he is allowed to leave in a given time, without flogging. He is still fortunate if only a flogging is added to the order to depart. Many have been hung or shot on the spot. Mr. Silliman details five instances of the latter as having occurred among the amiable people of Itawamba County, within the past ten weeks, of several of which he was the eye-witness, a mob wreaking their vengeance upon their victims under the approval of local authorities. These five men were Northerners, at different times assailed by the rebels. Three of them were strangers to all about them..

"On Saturday of last week a man was hung at Guntown, who refused to join the rebel army, and also refused to leave. He was taken to a tree in the outskirts of the village, and left hanging to a limb.

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a man was hung under similar circumstances, and still another at Vonona, where a traveller was seized in passing through the place. All these towns are within 20 miles circuit of Cupola, where Mr. Silliman resided. He says that he can recall twelve instances of killing, whipping, and other outrages thus visited upon the victims of the rebels in that vicinity, within the past two months. Many have been waiting in the hope that the storm would blow over,' but have, one after the other, been forced to submit or seek safety in flight."

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The instances herein given are such as seemed to us to be so verified as to admit of no doubt as to their entire truthfulness. Many others made public, and some of a most outrageous character, which have been repeated to us by refugees in person, we have refrained from referring to, since a suspicious public might question the authenticity of their unsupported statements. Enough has been given to throw an historical light upon the animus of the Southern people engaged in the revolution. The future historian of the great rebellion will not fail to discover in that spirit, not only a key to the social state of that section of the country, but will, if he be a disciple of Schlegel, find in it an effect of a cause-which cause had sedulously, and for generations, insensibly underminded the moral sentiments of the peeple.



THE Southern seceded States, notwith- | its leaders had, with entire reliance, counted standing their apparent confidence in their upon a strong defensive support in the North future, still were much alarmed at the attitude of the North, as well as at Mr. Lincoln's expressed determination to "retake and hold" the property of the Government seized by the revolutionists. From the preliminary stages of the secession movement,

which would restrain any attempts at coercion, should they be made by the Republicans and Douglas Democrats. New York City alone was regarded not only as ready to sustain the South in its secession, but, looking to the future through the medium of

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Mayor Wood's treasonable and preposterous manifesto regarding the independence of New York island, Southern men felt assured that the result would justify their most arrogant and precipitate steps in the formation of a Confederacy of Slave States. This rashness unquestionably was their ruin. Peaceable secession the administration Democracy stood ready to defend, as all their speeches in Congress during December, and the tone of the leading administration journals in the North, during the same month and the first half of January, will demonstrate. But, who ever knew the South, as a section, to treat any measure with calmness which affected their social or political status? The spirit which domineered at home was not one to play the courtier in the presence of its legislative equals; and when the serpent of the revolution began to uncoil-began to put forth, one by one, its hydra heads, its fangs were freely shown, and those who would have bade the monster depart in peace from the National Capital, were compelled to assume an attitude of defence against its malice and folly. The speech of Mr. Sickles, in the House, February 5th, sounded the alarum in these words of warning:

"In November it was peaceable secession. We could agree to that. I am for it. In January it was forcible secession; and then, sir, the friends of peaceable secession in the North were transformed into timid apologists. In February it is spoliation and war. Armies were raised under the guns of forts belonging to the United States, the ju

risdiction of which has been ceded to us by the solemn acts of the Seceding States. Measures of open war only yielded to Mexican spoliations, and I say, in the presence of this new and last phase of the secession movement, that it can have no friends in the North-it can have no apologists in the North; but there will soon be no exception to the general denunciation which it must meet from every loyal and patriotic citizen of this country."

Before such an issue, rashness and insolence would have given way at least to an outward show of kindness, in order to foster the

moral and material force of that Northern

sentiment in favor of peaceable secession; but, with a mountebank like Wigfall-with such a "tower of strength" as that embodiment of coarseness, James M. Mason-with the distempered and thwarted Robert M. T. Hunter-to defend and direct the cause of the rev

olutionists in the Senate; with equally distasteful men in the Lower House; with Toombs, Davis, Pickens, Brown, Slidell, Yancey, Rhett, Cobb, Benjamin-all plotting and counter-plotting for their own preeminence in the new nation: it is not remarkable that the secession movement should have resulted as it did-in driving the North, as a section, into an attitude of firm and determined resistance. Had the wiser counsels of Mr. Stephens, Judge Campbell, and other Southern conservatives" prevailed, it is highly probable that the history of the revolution would not have been written in blood-that diplomacy would have taken the place of the bayonet. Let the story of that reign of madmen remain, with its moral, as a warning to future malcontents!


In view of the apparently inevitable issue of a defence against their aggressions, the most extraordinary exertions were put forth by the Provisional Government to meet impending emergencies. As stated elsewhere, the levy of troops became general throughout the Seceded States. The forts in possession of the revolutionists were strengthened, and strongly garrisoned. Before Fort Pickens, off Pensacola, a powerful army gathered in February, under command of Braxton Bragg, late of the United States army. Before Fort Sumter the outlines of the lands around fairly bristled with guns. It was of the first necessity, in event of a conflict with the Federal Government, that both of these fortresses

should be in possession of the Confederates. They thus become, per consensum, the points of all interest to the people: around, and within their ramparts must the first blood be shed of a contest at which the civilized world should stand aghast.

In view of Mr. Lincoln's several declarations, on his route from Springfield to the Capital, regarding the forts and the property of the Government, the Charleston Mercury called, in these terms, for haste and extent of warlike preparations:

on, he will attempt to retake the forts now in the possession of the Confederate States and reenforce those now in the possession of the United States. That will be war-war in our bays and harbors. He will probably be willing to confine it to such localities. We have no idea that he will dare a campaign

"If his (Lincoln's) declarations are to be relied

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