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no new fact or principle The Northern people, including all parties, secretly appreciated the value of the Union to themselves; they knew that they would be ruined by a permanent secession of the Southern States; many of them had sought to bring the dissatisfied States back into the Union by the old resource of artful speeches and fine promises; and finding, at last, that the South was in earnest, and was no longer to be seduced by cheap professions, they quickly and sharply determined to coerce what they could not cozen. This is the whole explanation of the wonderful reaction. The North discovered, by the fiery dénouement in Charleston harbor, that the South was in earnest, and itself became as instantly in earnest. The sadden display of Northern rancor was no reaction; it was no new fact; it revealed what was already historical, and had been concealed only for purposes of policy—the distinct and sharp antipathy between the two sections, of which war or separation, at soine time, was bound to be the logical conclusion.
The crusade against the South mvolved all parties, and anited every interest in the North by the common bond of attachment to the Union. That attachment had its own reasons. The idea of the restoration of the Union was conceived in no historical enthusiasm for restoring past glories; it was animated by no patriotic desires contemplating the good of the whole country; the South was to be “whipped back into the Union,” to gratify either the selfishness of the North, or its worse lusts of revenge and fanaticism. The holiness of the erusade against the South was preached alike from the hustings and the pulpit. The Northern Democratic party, which had 89 long professed regard for the rights of the Southern States, and even sympathy with the first movements of their secession, rivalled the Abolitionists in their expressions of fury and reTenge ; their leaders followed the tide of public opinion : Mr. Edward Everett, of Massachusetts, who some months before had declared in a public speech that if the seceded States were “ determined to separate, we had better part in peace,” Lecamo a rhetorical advocate of the war; Daniel S. Dickinson, of New York, rivalled the Abolition leaders in his State in in. Haining the public mind; and in the city of New York, where but a few months before it had been said that the Southern
Confederacy would be able to recruit several regiments for its military service, demagogues in the ranks of the “National Democracy,” such as John Cochrane, harangued the multitude, advising them to “crush the rebellion,” and, if need be. to drown the whole So ith in one indiscriminate sea of blood Old contentions and present animosities were forgotten; Democrats associated with recreants and fanatics in one grand league for one grand purpose; foreigners from Europe were induced into the belief that they were called upon to fight for the “liberty" for which they had crossed the ocean, or for the “ free homesteads” which were to be the rewards of the war ; and all conceivable and reckless artifices were resorted to to swell the tide of numbers against the South. New England, which had been too conscientious to defend the national honor in the war with Great Britain, poured out almost her whole population to aid in the extermination of a people who liad given to the nation all the military glory it had achieved.*
* In the war of 1812, the North furnished 58,552 soldiers; the South, 96,812—making a majority of 37,030 in favor of the South. Of the number furnished by the NorthMassachusetts furnished....
.3,110 New Hampshire
387 Rhode Island
While the little State of South Carolina furnished 5,696.
1,048 The whole number of troops contributed by the North to the Mexican war was 23,054; while the South contributed 43,630, very nearly double, and, in proportion to her population, four times as many soldiers as the North.
When a resolution was introduced into the Legislature of Massachusetts, tendering a vote of thinks to the heroic Lawrence for his capture of the Pea cock, that pious State refused to adopt it, and declared
"That in a war like the present, waged without justifiable cause, and prog ecuted in a manner indicating that conquest and ambition are its real motives it is not becoming a moral and religious people to express any approbation or military and naval exploits not directly connected with the defence of our sta coast and our soil."
The effect of Mr. Lincoln's proclamation at the South was 10 less decisive than at the North. It remains a problem, which facts were never permitted to decide, but the solution of which may at least be approached by the logical considerations of history, to what extent the Border Slave States might have been secured to the Union by the policy of peace, and the simple energy of patience on the part of the government at Washington. As it was, the proclamation presented a new issne; it superseded that of the simple policy of secession; and it inaugurated the second secessionary movement of the Southern States on a basis infinitely higher and firmer, in all its moral and constitutional aspects, than that of the first movement of the Cotton States.
The proclamation was received at Montgomery with derisive laughter; the newspapers were refreshed with the Lincolniana of styling sovereign States "unlawful combinations," and warning a people standing on their own soil to return within twenty days to their "homes;" and, in Virginia, the Secessionists were hugely delighted at the strength Mr. Lincoln had unwittingly or perversely contributed to their cause. One after the other of the Border States refused the demands for their quotas in terms of scorn and defiance. Governor Rector, of Arkansas, repudiated the proclamation with an expression of concentrated defiance; Governor Magoffin, of Kentucky, replied, that that State would "furnish no troops for the wicked purpose of subduing her sister Southern States:" Governor Ellis, of North Carolina, telegraphed to Washington, "I can be no party to this wicked violation of the laws of
Subsequently the famous Hartford Convention was called. It assembled In the city of Hartford, on the 15th of December, 1814, and remained in ses sion twenty days. It made a report accompanied by a series of resolutions The following is a part of the report, as adopted:
"In cases of deliberate, dangerous, and palpable infractions of the Consti tution, affecting the sovereignty of a State and the liberties of the people, it is not only the right, but the duty, of each 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 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.”
This is the doctrine which the South had always held from the beginning, and for which the South is now pouring out her blood and treasure
this country, and especially to this war which is being waged apon a free and independent pecple ;” Governor Jackson, of Missouri, replied directly to Mr. Lincoln, “Your requisition in my judgment, is illegal, nnconstitutional, and revolutionary and, in its objects, inhuman and diabolical ;" and even the unspirited governor of Virginia, John Letcher, constrained by the policy of the time-server to reflect the changes which had become apparent to him in the uprising indignation of the people, ventured upon a remonstrance to President Lincoln, reminding him that his proclamation was “not within the purview of the Constitution or the act of 1795.” The only Southern governor that signified any degree of submission to the proclamation was the notorious Thomas Holladay Hicks, of Maryland; he gave verbal assurances to Mr. Lincoln that that State would supply her quota and give him military support; but, at the same time, with an art and effrontery that only a demagogue could attain, he published a proclamation to the people of Maryland, assuring them of his nentrality, and promising that an opportunity would be given them, iu the election of congressmen, to determine, of their own free will, whether they would sustain the old Union, or assist the South ern Confederacy.
On the 17th day of April, the Virginia Convention passed an ordinance of secession. It was an important era in the history of the times. It gave the eighth State to the Southern Confederacy. The position of Virginia was a commanding one with the other Border States; she started, by her act of secession, the second important movement of the revolution ; and she added to the moral influence of the event by the fact, that she had not seceded on an issue of policy, but on one of distinct and practical constitutional right, and that too in the face of a war, which had become absolutely inevitable and was frowning upon her own borders.
Virginia had been chided for her delay in following the Cotton States out of the Union, and, on the other hand, when she did secede, she was charged by the Northern politicians with being incrasistent and having kept bad faith in her relations with the Federal governinent. Both complaints were equally withont foundation. The record of the State was singularly explicit and clear.
The Virginia Resolutions of '98 and '99 had for sixty yeary constituted the text-book of the State Rights politicians of the Sonth. The doctrine of State sovereignty was therein vindieated and maintained, and the right and duty of States, suffering grievances from unjust and unconstitutional Federal leyislation, to judge of the wrongs, as well as of “the mode and measure of redress,” were made clear. The Virginia platform, as thus laid down in the elder Adams' time, was adopted by the “Strict Constructionist" party of that day, and has been reasserted ever since. Mr. Jefferson, the founder of the Democratic party in this country, was elected upon this platform, and his State Rights successors all acknowledged its orthodoxy. Whenever there arose a conflict between Federal and State authority, the voice of Virginia was the first to be heard in behalf of State Rights. In 1832–33, when the Tariff and Nullification controversy arose, Virginia, though not agreeing with South Carolina as to the particular remedy to which she resorted, yet assured that gallant State of her sympathy, and, at the same time, reasserted her old doctrines of State Rights. Her gallant and patriotic governor, John Floyd, the elder, declared that Federal troops should not pass the banks of the Potomac to coerce South Carolina into obedience to the tariff laws, unless over his dead body. Her Legislature was almost unanimously opposed to the coercion policy, and a majority of that body indicated their recognition of the right of a State to secede from the Union. The voice of Virginia Fas potential in settling this controversy upon conditions to which the Palmetto State could agree with both honor and consistency. At every stage of the agitation of the slavery question in Congress and in the Northern States, Virginia declared her sentiments and her purposes in a manner not to le misunderstood by friend or foe. Again and again did she enter upon her legislative records, in ineffable characters, the declaration that she would resist the aggressive spirit of the Northern majority, even to the disruption of the ties that tound her to the Union.
With almost entire unanimity, Virginia had resolved in gislative council, in 1848, that she would not submit to the passage of the Wilmot proviso, or any kindred measure. From the date of the organization of the Anti-Slavery party, her