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greater to Grant's army of the final Virginia campaign. The cohesion, mobility, and co-ordination of all its parts, which makes an army like a beautiful machine, is only slowly attained. "Not until after Vicksburg did the armies begin to assume the form and consistency of real armies; not until after that can their generals be held to a closer criticism." Halleck's campaign, ending in the breaking of the Memphis and Charleston Railroad, is the transition to the great campaigns of Grant and Sherman, which were conducted with purely military intentions, and on purely military principles.
The possibility of putting the Confederacy in a state of siege demonstrated, in the most unmis takable manner, the predominating power of the North; but that predominance was not to be measured by the relative population of the two sections. It was commonly said that the population of the insurgent states was twelve millions; that of the loyal states eighteen; but the disparity between them was vastly greater than is indicated by those numbers. The machine power of the South bore no appreciable proportion to the machine power of the North; and more particularly was this true of marine machinery; but it was upon that form that the capability of maintaining an ef fective blockade depended.
Predominating power of the North.
POWER OF THE NORTH.
Sorties of the
The South was thus thrown upon the defensive from the beginning of the struggle, and very soon effectually beleaguered. Her four great military movements, culminating at Antietam, Murfreesborough, Gettysburg, and Nashville, present the aspect of sorties.
There was another fact which manifestly and seriously diminished the intrinsic power of the South. of the slave force. Of the estimated twelve millions of her population, one third was negro slaves. As long as her an
INFLUENCE OF THE SLAVE FORCE.
tagonist, from political motives, refrained from touching this element, it added a delusive strength to the Confederacy. The slave prepared food and forage in the fields while the master and his sons were in the army. It was, however, impossible that such a condition of things should continue long. Legitimately as a measure of war, the government might detach that dangerous class from the side of the South-a measure which, under the cir cumstances, could not fail to be decisive of the strife.
ACTS OF THE PROVISIONAL AND PERMANENT CONFEDERATE
The important measures of the Confederate Congresses were transacted in secret sessions.
At the meeting specially summoned by Davis for the 29th of April, 1861, he gave an exposition of the causes which had led to secession.
The provisional Congress ended its sessions on the 15th of February, 1862, and was succeeded by the permanent Congress. The chief public acts of each related. The government of the Confederacy became so despotic in its conduct, and secret in its proceedings, as to give rise to great dissatisfaction.
THE public acts of the Confederate Congress present a very imperfect view of the measures adopted by the Confederate government.
Before hostilities commenced, it was found expedient that all the more important of those meas ures should be matured in secrecy. During
the war the necessity of this course became more and more urgent. A standing resolution required that all war business should be transacted in secret session, and by degrees this included every thing of general interest. Attempts were repeatedly made by different members of Congress to bring about a change; but they were unavailing. The war operations controlled all oth er movements; they were determined, perhaps too often, by the Confederate President himself. The secret history of the Confederacy is not to be looked for in the secret sessions of its Congress-not even in the councils of the cabinet. On the President rests the responsibility of what was done.
The important sessions of Congress secret.
The President controls all military operations.
ACTS OF THE CONFEDERATE CONGRESS.
In vain all over the South a cry was raised against this secret despotism. Even thoughtful men were constrained to submit because they saw it was unavoidable.
In the Confederate Congress, after the inauguration of Various Congres- a provisional President (February 18th, 1861), a resolution was offered touching the expediency of laying a duty on exported cotton, there being a very general opinion that such a course would aid very much in compelling the powers of Europe to ac knowledge the independence of the Confederacy. It was one of the delusions of the South that the great military monarchies of Europe could be coerced by trade consid erations. Her politicians, who had so often succeeded in carrying their point in domestic legislation by the exer cise of pressure, persuaded themselves that similar princi ples might with impunity be resorted to in foreign affairs. When financial provision was made for the war by authorizing the borrowing of fifteen millions of dollars, an export duty was at length laid on cotton, but it was with the intention of creating a fund to liquidate the principal and interest.
An act was passed in reference to the navigation of the Mississippi, declaring it free, and one defining the punishment of persons engaged in the African slave-trade. The postal system was organized, and the privilege of franking abolished, except so far as concerned the business of the post-office itself. Breadstuffs, provisions, munitions of war, and merchandise imported from the United States before the 14th of March, were admitted duty free.
With a view of exerting a salutary pressure upon Northern creditors, a bill was reported to the effect that, so long as the United States refused to acknowledge the independence of the Confederate States, no court of the latter should have cognizance of civil cases in which citi zens of the former were concerned. To conciliate the lit
CHAP. XLII.] ABSTRACT OF MR. DAVIS'S MESSAGE.
to the President.
Authority conceded erary influence of Europe, the President was authorized to negotiate international copyright treaties. Four days before the inauguration of Lincoln, the provisional Congress authorized Davis to assume control of the military operations in every Confederate state. Subsequently (March 6th) he was authorized to accept the services of one hundred thousand volunteers for twelve months. Anticipating but little difficulty in obtaining European recognition, commissioners were appointed to various foreign governments. On the 11th of March the permanent Constitution was adopted, and the Congress adjourned.
When it became obvious that the administration of Lincoln was about to take a more resolute action than that of Buchanan, Davis summoned (April 12th) the Congress to meet on the 29th of April. In the interval between its summons and its session Lincoln had called for 75,000 militia (April 15th), and had announced the blockade of the Southern ports (April 19th).
The message sent by Davis to the Congress on this ocThe message of the casion is perhaps the ablest of his state papers. He began by congratulating that body on the ratification of the permanent Constitution by Conventions of the states concerned, and expressed his belief that at no distant day the other Slave States would join the Confederacy.
It was not, however, for the purpose of making this announcement that he had summoned the mem
Extra session of
He affirms that the
United States have bers together, but because the President of the United States had made a declaration of war against the Confederacy, and thereby had render ed it necessary to devise measures for the defense of the country. That mankind might pass an impartial judg ment on the motives and objects of the Confederates, he