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ed the bill to provide an armed military force without opposition, Dec. 4th. It authorized the Government to call into service 10,000 volunteers.
undertake to garrison the forts with soldiers, | and 5 divisions. Mr. McGowan said the total South Carolina would act first; her young military force was 65,000. The House passmen, eager for the time to come, would be there before the Federal Government, prepared to bid defiance to it. Mr. Buchanan, he thought, would not interfere offensively; his term of office was so nearly expired that he would not assume the responsibility. The General Government was, therefore, taken at great disadvantage, and, for that reason, the time was very favorable for the State. Mr. Lincoln, he contended, would be powerless for a while. The Force bill was spent by limitation: Congress would not pass another; the incoming President would experience great difficulty in organizing the Government in all its departments, in finding men who would do his will or execute the laws; and much time would consequently elapse before the Government, even if the purpose existed, would be in a situation to attempt coercion on South Carolina. By that time, her sister Cotton States would be alongside of her. Of that he was quite confident. South Carolina would not be left to fight her battles alone. Mr. Meminger concluded his address by exhorting the people to be prepared for the inevitable change. The Legislature, at that very moment, was preparing the sinews of war, and success was certain, if the people were united in heart and hand.
December 2d another large meeting assembled in front of the Charleston Hotel. In the course of his remarks the Mayor made important announcements. Among other things he said: "I congratulate you that everything looks so cheering. We have news from Georgia that she has bound her emblem with ours across the Savannah River. We have news from Florida that her Governor has said that, at every hazard, she must sever her connection with her faithless confederates. Mississippi and Alabama are ready. And we have bright hopes from the old State of North Carolina. Fellow-citizens, the Aborigines of this country of ours used to worship the rising sun. I tell you that we, too, have a rising sun to venerate, and that is the rising sun of a Southern Confederacy. I think I see the gray of the morning of the rising of that sun. With this Union of our sister States, it is certain to rise."
The election for delegates to the Convention was held December 5th. It passed off quietly, as the people were unanimous in feeling the only contest being the preferences expressed for particular persons—all of whom were, of course, committed to secession. December 7th, Governor Gist sent in his last MesHe exhorted to immediate and separate action.
What is notable in regard to this speech is the quiet air of authority which it assumed; and the fact that the steps prescribed by the speaker were taken almost to the letter, demonstrates how fully the movement was un-sage. der the control of very few sagacious leaders. The State Legislature, as Mr. M. stated, was maturing the ways and means for the change, even to the perfection of an independant postal and telegraph system, which was expected to produce an immediate revenue to the State. In the course of remarks made in the Legislature by Mr. Rhett, on the establishment of an Ordnance Bureau, (Dec. 4th,) he stated that there had been, for several years, in Charleston, eight of the largest size Paixhan guns, which might, perhaps, be used in taking the forts. Mr. Marshall said the State had 382 infantry companies, 50 cavalry, 19 artillery, and 62 rifle companies, making 121 battalions, 56 regiments, 14 brigades,
"The delay of the Convention for a single week to pass the Ordinance of Secession will have a blighting and chilling influence upon the action of the other Southern States. The opponents of the movement everywhere will be encouraged to make another effort to rally their now disorganized and scattered forces to defeat our action and stay our onward march. Fabius conquered by delay, and there are those of bis school, though with a more unmanly attack, use this vail to hide their deformity, worthy purpose, who, shrinking from open and
and from a masked battery to discharge their mis
siles. But I trust they will strike the armor of truth
and fall harmless at our feet, and that by the 28th of December no flag but the Palmetto will float over any part of South Carolina."
THE ACTION OF THE SOUTHERN STATES.
The total vote in Charleston City on Delegates was 3,721, given to twenty-two candidates. The vote, being a very full one, showed that the number of persons in the city of lawful age, subject to military duty, was but little over three thousand.
Matters did not remain in a quiet state, during the last week of November and the first week of December, throughout the Cotton States. The volcano of public opinion was rumbling everywhere in their borders, indicative of the coming explosion. The Governor of Florida, in his message to the Legislature of that State, November 26th, assumed the right and necessity of immediate secession. Among other things, he said:— "I will not insult your intelligence or trespass on your patience by recounting the aggressions already perpetrated, or by referring to those that must follow our submission. For myself, in full view of the responsibility of my position, I most decidedly declare that, in my opinion, the only hope the Southern States have for domestic peace and safely, or for future respectability and prosperity, is dependent on their action now; and that the proper action is-Secession from our faithless, perjured con
Florida for Precipita
"But some Southern men, it is said, object to secession until some overt act of unconstitutional power shall have been committed by the General Government; that we ought not to secede until the President and Congress unite in passing an act unequivocally hostile to our institutions, and fraught with immediate danger to our rights of property and to our domestic safety. My countrymen! if we wait for such an overt act, our fate will be that of the white inhabitants of St. Domingo.
"But why wait for this overt act of the General Government? What is that Government? It is but the trustee, the common agent of all the States, appointed by them to manage their affairs according to a written constitution or power of attorney. Should the sovereign States, then-the principals and the partners in the association-for a moment tolerate the idea that their action must be graduated by the will of their agents? The idea is preposterous."
United States Senator Yulee, of Florida, communicated from Washington, under date of November 29th, to the Legislature of his State, his desire to "promptly and joyously return home to support the banner of the State" when the day should be named for her secession,
In Alabama, among other features of the time, may be mentioned the formation of "Committees of Public Safety," similar to the "Vigilance Associations" of South Carolina, viz. :—“To take care that the public peace and safety be not endangered; to arrest or remove from the county all dangerous and suspicious persons; to bring them before the proper officers of law, as the public interest may require; to organize and sustain an efficient patrol." A meeting of the citizens of Baldwin County, November 24th, to organize one of these Committees, passed a unanimous resolution against secession, "unless a majority of the Slaveholding States concur; but, if the State does secede, we will heartily go with her."
United States Senator Clay, of Alabama, tendered his resignation December 10th, to take effect March 4th, unless Alabama should sooner secede-in which case he would with
draw upon the announcement of the act.
The Mississippi Legislature, on the 29th of November, adopted resolutions appointing Commissioners to visit the Slave States to insure cooperation and uniformity of action. [The names of gentlemen appointed are given in the Summary.]
On the 29th of November, a large meeting was held in Vicksburg, Miss., which, after a protracted session, adopted resolutions of a somewhat novel character, from which we extract the following :—
"Resolved, That we have yet remedies within the Union, so far untried, but fully adequate to defeat for the present the sectional aggressive combination now made in the North against the South; that by the control of the Senate and the House-the one body representing the sovereignty of the coequal States, and the other the popular will-the conservative members of these bodies can, using the undoubted power granted in the Constitution, and in maintenance of its spirit prevent all appointments to office-Cabinet or otherwise-stop all supplies, and check the wheels of Government for two years-at least from March 4, 1861; that, however violent the remedy, the Constitution warrants it, and the exi
gency will have arisen on that day when the remedy should be applied.
"Resolved, That a suspension of the active powers of Government for two or four years would not be
so great an evil as the utter extinguishment of the | Mr. Bell took strong Union grounds. Constitution. The former affords a time and place did not consider that the election of Mr. for repentance;' the latter abandons all hope. We yet trust that the North will recede from its position, and grant such other and fuller guarantees as may be found necessary and sufficient for our protection." Further resolves were adopted, approving the call for a Convention, regretting the brevity of the time allowed for the reelection of the delegates, and insisting "that any active measures that Convention may recommend shall be submitted to the people of the whole State for ratification."
A Convention of Southern States was recommended, and separate secession "would be an act of precipitation not justified by existing circumstances."
Lincoln afforded any just cause for a dissolu-
This meeting was said to represent the might result from secession. The disunion "conservative" feeling of the State.
feeling was represented as on the daily increase. The certainty of the seccssion of South Carolina and Alabama gave certainty to the movement in Georgia. Gov. Brown, Dec. 9th, published a long letter favoring early secession. The State Senate, Dec. 4th, voted to indefinitely postpone the resolutions in favor of calling a Convention of Southern States. The vote stood 58 to 45. This nonacceptance was construed as highly favorable to the cause of separate and decisive action on the part of Georgia, without any reference to the action of any other State. The rejec
A very exciting assemblage of the citizens of Memphis, Tennessee, took place on the evening of November 30th. It was called for cementing and organizing the secession sentiment, but the Unionists were so numerous that the meeting was everything else than harmonious. A gathering of the citizens of Davidson County, Tenn., on the 1st of December, requested the Governor to summon the Legislature, that it " may provide for a State Convention, to be elected by the people, the object of which shall be to bring about a conference of Southern States, to consider existing political troubles, and, up Slavery agitation, Madison, in 1833, thus wrote if possible, to compose our sectional strifes." It is certain that, up to December 3d, the Union feeling was largely in the ascendant, even in Western Tennessee. In Central and Eastern Tennessee it was then, and continued to be, the prevailing sentiment—shining | of our Northern brethren. Their good faith is sufout of the darkness of revolution like a beacon-light.
Governor Harris (of Tennessee) called an extra session of the Legislature to meet Jan. 7th, "to consider the present state of the country." It was quite generally understood that the Governor was in the league of cooperationists.
On the 6th of Dec. Hon. John Bell published in Nashville an elaborate letter, in reply to an invitation to address the mass conven tion at Vicksburg, above referred to. In it
* Regarding the sin of the Slave States in keeping
to Henry Clay :
"It is painful to see the unceasing efforts to alarm the South by imputations against the North, of unconstitutional designs on the subject of Slavery. You are right, I have no doubt, in believing that no such intermeddling disposition exists in the body
ficiently guaranteed by the interest they have as merchants, as ship-owners, and as manufacturers, in preserving a union with the Slaveholding States. On the other hand what madness in the South to look for greater safety in disunion! It would be worse than jumping into the fire for fear of the fry ing-pan. The danger from the alarm is, that the pride and resentment exerted by them may be an overmatch for the dictates of prudence, and favor the projects of a Southern Convention, insidiously revived, as promising by its counsels the best securities against grievances of every sort from the North."
ACTION OF THE SOUTHERN
tion of the resolution demonstrated the influ- | ber 28th, inclosing a resolution adopted.
In Texas the secessionists found a stumbling block in Governor Houston, who refused to convene the Legislature. Not to be thwarted, the member for Gonzales issued a circular to the members, inviting them to meet, at Austin, at an early day, to consider what action was necessary. As an evidence of the small strength of the executive or judicial authority to enforce regularity, we may advert to the proceedings of Judge Perkins, Chief Justice of Brazoria county, who issued an official notice of an election to be held on December 3d, to select five delegates to a State Convention which was to be held at Galveston, or elsewhere, January 8th. The call said:
"Recognizing the right of the people-particularly such a number as convened to-day-to command me to perform any laudable duty for them, I obey this request promptly and with a hearty good will."
It was announced, December 8th, that there is an understanding between the members of the Legislature of Texas that the Legislature should meet at Austin, on the 17th of December, without a formal call from the Governor, and it is understood that the Legislature will call a State Convention, on the 8th of January."
The scheme embraced, as in South Carolina, a repudiation of the obligations of their own State Constitution. It was a revolution against their own constituted authority, as well as against the General Government.
Governor Houston, evidently anticipating these efforts at revolution, issued a circular to the governors of the Southern States, Novem
The Democrats of Maryland assembled in State Convention in Baltimore, December 6th, passing, among other resolutions, the following:
"Resolved, That we deplore the action taken by our sister State of South Carolina, and earnestly protest against an ordinance of secession on her part as being unconstitutional, disorganizing and precipitate, and unfriendly, if not arrogant, toward the counsels and situations of the other Slaveholding States; and
we believe that such act of secession will weaken
and must divide their ultimate position; and while we declare for cooperation, we will firmly resist being dragged into secession. Maryland will not stand as a sentinel at the bidding of South Carolina, and we remind her, by the memories of the Revolution, that such purpose cannot be justified; and, in conclusion, in a fraternal spirit, we entreat South Carolina to suspend all further action until such measures of peaceful adjustment have first been tried and havə failed."
This, conjoined to the firm attitude of Governor Hicks, seemed to place the State beyond reach of the Secessionists. It was reported, however, that a secret organization existed in Baltimore, composed of some of the worst elements of society, whose purpose was to aid in carrying the State out of the Union, against the Governor's resistance. It was announced to number twenty-two hundred men, on the 9th of December.
The Union sentiment in Virginia had emphatic public expression, on the evening of December 5th, when a complimentary dinner was given to the Bell-Everett electors. The gathering embraced eminent and leading men, and the speeches made were of a strongly Union character. Among the toasts presented and warmly responded to, were: "The Constitutional Union party of Virginia ;” “Virgi. nia in the Union;" "The Union;" "The Conservative Men of all the States," &c., &c. The people and the press of the State remained, during the early part of December,
The State Legislature, convened in extra session, provided for a Convention
widely divided in feeling, though the majority appeared opposed not only to precipitate action, but favored schemes of compromise. Even John Tyler, Mr. Hunter, Judge to assemble January 23d. The feeling in the Mason, and ex-Governor Wise were under-State was rapidly becoming as unanimous as stood to favor compromise, though the latter in the adjoining States. The Legislature apwas so imperative in his radical demands as to render his terms simply impracticable. His campaign against John Brown seemed to have left the impression on his mind that the entire Republican and Douglas parties were to be treated to the rope as the only hope of Virginia.
propriated five hundred thousand dollars for arming the State. A Commissioner was named by the Governor to confer with the authorities of the States. The Legislature adjourned, sine die, Dec. 12. The position assumed by Mr. Benjamin, in the U. S. Senate, reflected the feeling and purposes of his State.
PROCEEDINGS OF CONGRESS CONTINUED. SECOND WEEK. IMPORTANT PRELIMINARY PROCEEDINGS. THE FUTILITY
O F COMPROMISE FORESHADOWED.
Caucus of Southern
A CAUCUS of Southern During the recess, (DeSenators was held Saturday cember 7th, 8th, 9th,) many evening, December 8th, to schemes of adjustment were exchange views and concert action. No doubt proposed. It would appear, indeed, that was expressed by Senators from Georgia, almost every member had some balm for the Alabama, Mississippi, Florida, and South disunion sore. One scheme, announced as Carolina, but that their States would secede having obtained much favor, provided, first: by ordinances. Senators present from those ---The territory shall not be acquired otherStates represented that no interposition now wise than by treaty. Second: the whole incould arrest that first step, though their ulti-habitants of any territory numbering 20,000 mate relation to the Union might be affected shall have the right to elect all officers necesby future developments. Messrs. Bayard, sary for its government under the rules prePearce, Nicholson, Powell, and Crittenden scribed by an act of Congress; and the Legiswere in favor of making every effort to pro-lature thereof may determine whether to tect the rights of the South in the Union. recognize Slavery or not during its TerritoMr. Mason also favored the same view, while rial existence. Third: whenever any Terrirequiring guarantees and expressing misgiv-tory, preparatory to its assuming a State ings as to the result. Mr. Hunter was willing sovereignty, having white inhabitants equal to go farther for conciliation than his recent to the number required for a representative letter indicated. Mr. Brown advocated im- in Congress, and having submitted its Conmediate secession as the only remedy. Mr. stitution to a vote of the people, applies for Davis thought other means should be ex-admission, it shall be admitted into the hausted before proceeding to that extremity. Mr. Slidell was among the most ultra, and declared that Louisiana could not be restrained from taking position with the Seceding States, even if her Representatives in Congress were opposed to that policy. Mr. Iverson was not present.
Union, whatever may be its provisions in regard to Slavery, upon an equal footing with the original States. Fourth: that Congress shall not interfere with Slavery where it exists under the sanction of law, nor shall it prohibit the transportation of slaves from one Slave State to another. We give this one of