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their action was, beyond all doubt, not that present territory alone should be thus divided, but that the question should be removed from doubt and difficulty for all time, and to give us at the South a chance whatever change might come. Shall we be rewarded for all we give up, and find full compensation in a clause which itself prevents the acquisition of future territory ! The statement is in itself a sufficient answer to the question. But there was another element in the propositions of the Legislature of Virginia. That, was security against the principles of the North, and her great and now dominant party; it was intended to put an end to the discussions that have convulsed the country and jeopardized our institutions. It was the policy of our fathers to settle these questions. They determined to make a final and decisive line of demarkation, and to let that be conclusive. But this young people could not be restrained, and when new territory was acquired the same question arose again. It now comes up once more. Virginia early saw the seeds of trouble in it, because she saw that the tide of emigration would continue to press toward the fertile lands of the South. She saw and she acted. In consequence of her action we are here. Would it not be wise and well as statesmen and as patriots, that you should do what you can for adjustment? do what you can to bring back your sisters of the South who have departed? It is the part of wisdom to settle. Virginia was wise to ask it. There is another thing. A great and mighty party has arisen at the North that is determined to exclude the institution of slavery, not only from all future, but from all present territory. We know that in all ways this party has declared that it would not consent to let slavery go where it does not now exist. More heated zealots, also animated and sustained by this same party, have determined that this natural and patriarchal institution of the South should be surrounded by a cordon of free States, and in the end be extinguished altogether. Is it not wise in Virginia, that she should see that this project of surrounding the South with free States should be guarded against—most effectually guarded against now and in time to come, and so preserve her dignity and power? This amendment adopted, and the proposition to Virginia will be a farce. Gentlemen, we hold that as the soulistoman, soishonor to anation. Honor is the soul of nations. Withoutit, no nation can have a place in history or among the nations. We of Virginia must have in this Confederation the position of an equal. Equal in dignity—equal in right. In the Congress of the States of this Union, we insist on this as our right. We must have the same protection as the States of the North. Otherwise we are a dishonored people. We might live for a time otherwise, but we should be unworthy aplace among the nations. We hold our property, yes, our property in slaves, as rightful and as honorable as any property to be found in the broad expansebetween ocean and ocean. We feel that in the existence, the perpetuity, the protection of the African race, we have a mission to perform, and not a mission only, but a right and a duty. Upon this subject I have a word to say in all seriousness. Think not, gentlemen of the North, that we propose to deceive or mislead you. We of the South are earnest in what we say. This is a question which we answer to ourselves. We hold that these colored barbarians have been withdrawn from a country of native barbarism, and under the benignant influence of a Christian rule, of a Christian civilization, have been elevated, yes, elevated to a standing and position which they could never have otherwise secured. In respect to the colored race we challenge comparison with San Domingo, with the freed regions of Jamaica, with those who have been transferred to the coast of Africa. Ask the travellers who have visited those distant shores to contrast the condition of the colored people there with that of those on our Southern plantations, and they will give you but one answer—. they will say, we have redeemed and kept well our high and our holy trust. But this is a matter with our own consciences, not with yours. We appeal to you to leave it where it is, to leave the colored people where they are. Why should you undertake to interfere with the policy of a neighboring State concerning a people about which you know nothing? We feel, we know that we have done that race no wrong. Deep into the Southern heart has this feeling penetrated. For scores of years we have been laboring earnestly in our mission. In all this time we have contributed far more to the greatness of the North than to our own. Yet all this

time we have been assailed, attacked, vilified and defamed, by the people of the North, from the cradle to the grave, and you have educated your children to believe us monsters of brutality, lust and iniquity. I tell you, that from the time the abolition societies aroused the latent anti-slavery spirit of the North until now, nothing but evil has come of the excitement and discussion. It has spread a horrid influence far and wide; it has for years distilled, and is now distilling its poison and venom all over the land. It was under English, yes, British, Anglo-Saxon instigation that it first commenced. By this instigation it has been fed, been given life, continuity and power. Think you the English authors of this instigation had any purpose but to disrupt this Republic : They professed to regard slavery as an evil and a sin. The fruits of their action were first manifested in religious societies—first in the largest churches in New England, in the Presbyterian or Congregational churches, next the Methodist, then the Baptist, and finally, the venom spread so widely, its influence separated other churches. What has the moral influence of this power done? It has made the abstraction of our slaves a virtue. Societies have been formed for that very purpose, inciting their members and others, by the vilest motives, to steal our slaves, to destroy our property. Nor have they been sufficiently modest to cloak their designs under the veil of secrecy. These people advocated their pernicious doctrines openly in your leading cities, even within the consecrated walls of Fanueil Hall. Openly among your people, in the very light of day, these efforts were carried on for the destruction of your sister States. There has not been an effort of the law nor an exertion of public opinion to put them down. These efforts culminated in the actual invasion of my own old honored State, and your people thought they were doing GOD service in signing a petition to our authorities for mercy to John Brown and his ruffian invaders of our soil. And when these men met the just reward of their crime, there was, throughout the North, in your meetings and your public prints, expressions of sympathy for these robbers and murderers. They were looked upon as the victims of oppression, as martyrs to a holy and righteous cause. Gentlemen, consider these things, and tell me, is there not to-day reason for suspicion; on the part of the South for grave apprehension? But the half is yet to be told; I have looked only at the moral aspect of the question. Dangerous enough hitherto, it becomes far more dangerous when it culminates on the arena of politics, and asks, with the powerful aid of a majority, the interference and the aid of the Government. As soon as it became the party of one idea it began to draw to it, first the support of one, then another political party. It went on securing the assistance of one after another until it demoralized, until it brought each to ruin. It destroyed the grand old Whig party. Fanatic enough before, when it had brought that party to its grave, it thrust upon the arena of politics this question of slavery in the territories. Then for the first time it raised the cry of “Free Soil,” and brought to its support the hearts of a majority of the people of the northern States. The people of the North and Northwest have long been noted for their acquisitive disposition, especially for the acquisition of lands. This has been manifested in every form. Carried into effect it has made them powerful, until, not long since, they thought they might get entire dominion at no distant day. Then arose in their hearts a desire greater than the greed of land—the greed of office and power. They then saw that perhaps the North alone might control the national government, and with it the South. Then, too, the great class of protected interests at the North—always greater at the North than at the South—joined with them. All these protected classes, whose advantages had been diverted from other classes to which they belonged, joined with landseekers to secure power. Influence after influence of this sort combined, until it produced your great Republican party; in other words, your great Sectional party, which has at length come to majority and power. I do not wish to dwell upon the principles of that party, or to discuss them; I simply assert that their principles involve all the sentiments of abolitionism. They may be summed up in this: you determine to oppose the admission of slave States in the future. You say that the whole power of the country, the whole

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power of the administration, shall be used in future for the final
extinction of slavery.
This, now, is the ruling idea of your great sectional party.
It is simply the rule of one portion of the country over another.
There is no difference between attacking slavery in the States
and keeping it out of the territories. It is only drawing a
parallel around the citadel at a more remote point.
Now, see how the South is placed. The South has forborne
as long as it can, just as long as party organization existed, and as
long as the South could keep it in existence. It was only when
we saw that the whole united Government was to be turned
against us, that we began to think of taking the subject into our
own hands.
What are we to expect now, when the power, direct and in-
direct, of this great Government is to be used in the most ef.
fective manner against us? A power which claims that we shall
not exercise the rights of States even, a power which seeks to
coerce us, when we propose to protect ourselves against this
lowering and impending danger. You of the North are descend-
ed from men who honored the scaffold for the very rights we
now seek to exercise. So are we. You would deserve to be
spurned by the maids and matrons among you, if you refused to
protect yourselves against the dangers thus drawing around you.
Can you expect less of us?
Do you tell me that this is an artificial crisis? Would seven
States have abandoned all the grand interest they possessed in a
glorious and happy Confederacy like ours, but for more serious
and vital interests, the interests of safety, security, and honor?
Think well of these things, gentlemen!
I have hastily endeavored to show you where I conceive we
of the South stand. The feelings which I express are entertained
likewise by the border States, by all the citizens of the South, by
every householder of my State in a greater or less degree.
The State to which I refer, Virginia, is now met in solemn
convocation to consider whether she shall remain in the Union or
go out of it; and with the most earnest desire to secure to herself
alonger connection with the American Union, a Union of so much
honor and pride, and with an equally earnest desire to bring back
the wandering States of the South which have already left us, she,

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