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ted to the "Confederate" Congress a message met at Montgomery, Alabama, February concerning the secession of Missouri. It was 4th, 1861, to organize a Southern Confederaccompanied by a letter from Governor acy. Each State had a representation equal Jackson, and also by an act dissolving the to the number of members of the Thirtyunion with the United States, and an sixth Congress. The members were: act ratifying the Constitution of the Provisional Government of the Confederate States; also, the Convention between the Commissioners of Missouri and the Commissioners of the Confederate States. Congress unanimously ratified the Convention entered into between the Hon. R. M. T. Hunter for the rebel Government and the Commissioners for Missouri.

Inter-State Commissioners.

The seceding States, as part of their plan of operation, appointed Commissioners to visit other slaveholding States. They were as follows, as announced in the newspapers:


To Alabama, A. P. Calhoun.

To Georgia, James L. Orr, Ex-M.C.

To Florida, L. W. Spratt.

To Mississippi, M. L. Bonham, Ex-M. C.

To Louisiana, J. L. Manning.

To Arkansas, A. C. Spain.

To Texas, J. B. Kershaw.

To Virginia, John S. Preston.


To North Carolina, Isham W. Garrett.
To Mississippi, E. W. Pettus.
To South Carolina, J. A. Elmore.
To Maryland, A. F. Hopkins.
To Virginia, Frank Gilmer.
To Tennessee, L. Pope Walker.
To Kentucky, Stephen F. Hale.
To Arkansas, John Anthony Winston.

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Robert W. Barnwell, Ex-U. S. Senator.
R. Barnwell Rhett,
James Chesnut, Jr.,
Lawrence M. Keitt, Ex-M. C.
William W. Boyce,
Wm. Porcher Miles,
C. G. Memminger.
Thomas J. Withers.




W. P. Chilton.
Stephen F. Hale.
David P. Lewis.
Thomas Fearn.
Richard W. Walker.
Robert H. Smith.

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Colin J. McRae.

John Gill Shorter.

J. L. M. Curry, Ex-M. C.


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W. S. Wilson.

Wiley P. Harris, Ex-M. C.

James T. Harrison.

J. Patten Anderson, Ex-Delegate from
Washington Territory.

Jackson Morton, Ex-U. S. Senator.
James Powers.

Walter Brooke, Ex-U. S. Senator.
William S. Barry, Ex-M. C.
A. M. Clayton.

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Duncan F. Kenner.

Charles M. Conrad, Ex-U. S. Senator.

Henry Marshall.

John Perkins, Jr.




TEXAS. (Admitted March 2d, 1861.)
Louis T. Wigfall, Ex-U. S. Senator.
John Hemphill,
John H. Reagan, Ex-M. C
T. N. Waul.
John Gregg.

W. S. Oldham.

W. B. Ochiltree.

Proceedings of the Southern Congress.

February 4th, 1861. Howell Cobb of Georgia elected President, Johnson J. Hooper of Alabama, Secretary. Mr. Cobb announced that secession "is now a fixed and irrevocable fact, and the separation is perfect, complete and perpetual.”

6th. David L. Swain, M. W. Ransom and John L. Bridgers, were admitted as Commissioners from North Carolina, under resolutions of the General Assembly of that State, passed January 29, 1861, "to effect an honorable and amicable adjustment of all the difficulties that disturb the country, upon the basis of the Crittenden resolutions, as modified by the Legislature of Virginia," and to consult with the delegates to the Southern Congress for their " common peace, honor and safety."

7th. Congress notified that the State of Alabama had placed $500,000 at its disposal, as a loan to the provisional government of the Confederacy of Seceding States.

8th. The Constitution of the Provisional Government adopted.*

The Provisional Constitution adopted by the Seceded States differs from the Constitution of the United States

in several important particulars. The alterations and additions are as follows:


1st. The Provisional Constitution differs from the other

In this: That the legislative powers of the Provisional Government are vested in the Congress now assembled, and this body exercises all the functions that are exercised by

either or both branches of the United States Government. 2d. The Provisional President holds his office for one year, unless sooner superseded by the establishment of a permanent Government

3d. Each State is erected into a distinct judicial district, the judge having all the powers heretofore vested in the district and circuit courts; and the several district judges together compose the supreme bench-a majority of them constituting a quorum.

4th Wherever the word "Union" occurs in the United States Constitution the word "Confederacy" is substituted.

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1st. There is no prohibition on members of Congress holding other offices of honor and emolument under the Provisional Government.

2d. There is no provision for a neutral spot for the location of a seat of government, or for sites for forts, arsenals, and dock-yards; consequently there is no reference made to the territorial powers of the Provisional Government.

3d. The section in the old Constitution in reference to capitation and other direct tax is omitted; also, the section providing that no tax or duty shall be laid on any exports.

4th. The prohibition on States keeping troops or ships of war in time of peace is omitted.

5th. The Constitution being provisional merely, no provision is made for its ratification.


1st. The fugitive slave clause of the old Constitution is eo amended as to contain the word "slave," and to provide for fall compensation in cases of abduction or forciole rescue on the part of the State in which such abduction or rescue may take place.

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9th. Jefferson Davis of Mississippi, ele Provisional President of the Confede States of America, and Alexander H. phens of Georgia, Vice President. question of attacking Fort Sumter been referred to the Congress.

11th. Mr. Stephens announced his ac Committee appointed to prepa permanent Constitution.


12th. The Congress assumed "charg all questions and difficulties now exis between the sovereign States of this Cor eracy and the Government of the Un States, relating to the occupation of f arsenals, navy yards, custom-houses, an tion was directed to be communicated to other public establishments." The res Governors of the respective States of Confederacy.

15th. Official copy of the Texas Ordina of Secession presented.

16th. President Davis arrived and recei with salute, etc.

18th. President Davis inaugurated. 19th. Tariff law passed.

21st. Robert Toombs appointed Secret of State; C. G. Memminger, Secretary of Treasury; L. Pope Walker of Alaba Secretary of War; Stephen R. Malle Secretary of the Navy; Judah P. Benjan Attorney-General, and John H. Reag Postmaster-General; Philip Clayton Georgia appointed Assistant Secretary the Treasury, and Wm. M. Browne, late the Washington Constitution, Assista Secretary of State.

March 2d. The Texas Deputies receiv

The Justifying Causes of Secessio

In justification of the passage of an or Carolina adopted two papers, one report nance of Secession, the Convention of Sou by Mr. R. B. Rhett, being styled "The A dress of the people of South Carolina, asser bled in Convention, to the people of th Slaveholding States of the United States and the other, reported by Mr. C. G. Mer minger, being styled "Declaration of th causes which justify the Secession of Sout Carolina from the Federal Union." A these official papers have historic value, the are inserted in full.

The former of these two papers is as fo lows:

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United States. During this period their advance in wealth, prosperity, and power, has been with scarcely a parallel in the history of the world. The great object of their union was external defence from the aggressions of more powerful nations; now complete, from their mere progress in power, thirty-one millions of people, with a commerce and navigation which explores every sea, and of agricultural productions which are necessary to every civilized people, command the friendship of the world. But, unfortunately, our internal peace has not grown with our external prosperity. Discontent and contention has moved in the bosom of the Confederacy for the last thirty-five years. During this time South Carolina has twice called her people together in solemn Couvention, to take into consideration the aggressions and unconstitutional wrongs perpetrated by the people of the North on the people of the South. These wrongs were submitted to by the people of the South, under the hope and expectation that they would be final. But these hopes and expectations have proved to be void. Instead of being incentives to forbearance, our submis sion has only instigated to new forms of aggressions and outrage, and South Carolina, again assembling her people in convention, has this day dissolved her connection with the States constituting the United States.

The one great evil from which all other evils have flowed, is the overthrow of the Constitution of the United States. The Government of the United States is no longer the government of a confederate republic, but of a consolidated democracy. It is no longer a free government, but a despotism. It is, in fact, such a government as Great Britain attempted to set over our fathers, and which was resisted and defeated by a seven years struggle for independence.

ation without a representation adequate to protection, there was no difference. By neither would the colonies tax themselves. Hence they refused to pay the taxes laid by the British Parliament.

The Southern States now stand in the same relation toward the Northern States, in the vital matter of taxation, that our ancestors stood toward the people of Great Britain. They are in a minority in Congress. Their representation in Congress is useless to protect them against unjust taxation, and they are taxed by the people of the North for their benefit exactly as the people of Great Britain taxed our ancestors in the British Parliament for their benefit. For the last forty years the taxes laid by the Congress of the United States have been laid with a view of subserving the interests of the North. The people of the South have been taxed by duties on imports not for revenue, but for an object inconsistent with revenue to promote, by prohibitions, Northern interests in the productions of their mines and manufactures.

There is another evil in the condition of the Southern toward the Northern States, which our ancestors refused to bear toward Great Britian. Our ancestors not only taxed themselves, but all the taxes collected from them were expended among them. Had they submitted to the pretensions of the British Government, the taxes collected from them would have been expended on other parts of the British Empire. They were fully aware of the effect of such a policy in impoverishing the people from whom taxes are collected, and in enriching those who receive the benefit of their expenditure. To prevent the evils of such a policy was one of the motives which drove them on to revolution. Yet this British policy has been fully realized toward The revolution of 1776 turned upon one great princi- the Southern States by the Northern States. The people, self-government, and self-taxation the criterion of ple of the Southern States are not only taxed for the self-government. Where the interests of two people benefit of the Northern States, but after the taxes are united together under one Government are different, collected three-fourths of them are expended at the each must have the power to protect its interests by North. This cause, with others connected with the the organization of the Government, or they cannot be operation of the General Government, has provincialfree. The interests of Great Britain and of the colo-ized the cities of the South. Their growth is paralyzed, nies were different and antagonistic. Great Britain while they are the mere suburbs of Northern cities. was desirous of carrying out the policy of all nations The bases of the foreign commerce of the United States toward their colonies of making them tributary to their are the agricultural productions of the South; yet wealth and power. She had vast and complicated rela- Southern cities do not carry it on. Our foreign trade tions with the whole world. Her policy toward her is almost annihilated. In 1740 there were five shipNorth American colonies was to identify them with yards in South Carolina to build ships to carry on our ber in all these complicated relations, and to make direct trade with Europe. Between 1740 and 1779 them bear, in common with the rest of the empire, the there were built in these yards twenty-five squarefall burden of her obligations and necessities. She had rigged vessels, beside a great number of sloops and a vast public debt; she had a European policy and an schooners to carry on our coast and West India trade. Asiatic policy, which had occasioned the accumulation In the half century immediately preceding the Revoluof her public debt, and which kept her in continual tion, from 1725 to 1775, the population of South Carowars. The North American colonies saw their inter- lina increased seven-fold. ests, political and commercial, sacrificed by such a policy. Their interests required that they should not be identified with the burdens and wars of the mother country. They had been settled under charters which gave them self-government, at least so far as their property was concerned. They had taxed themselves, and had never been taxed by the Government of Great Britain. To make them a part of a consolidated empire the Parliament of Great Britain determined to assume the power of legislating for the colonies in all cases whatsoever. Our ancestors resisted the pretension. They refused to be a part of the consolidated Government of Great Britain.

The Southern States now stand exactly in the same position toward the Northern States that our ancestors in the colonies did toward Great Britain. The Northern States, having the majority in Congress, claim the same power of omnipotence in legislation as the British Parliament. "The general welfare" is the only limit to the legislation of either; and the majority in Congress, as in the British Parliament, are the sole judges of the expediency of the legislation this "general welfare" requires. Thus the Government of the United States has become a consolidated Government, and the people of the Southern States are compelled to meet the very despotism their fathers threw off in the Revolution of 1776.

The consolidation of the Government of Great Britain over the colonies was attempted to be carried out by the taxes. The British Parliament undertook to tax the colonies to promote British interests. Our fathers resisted this pretension. They claimed the right of self-taxation through their Colonial Legislatures. They were not represented in the British Parliament, and therefore could not rightfully be taxed by its Legislature. The British Government, however, offered them a representation in the British Parlament; but it was not sufficient to enable them to protect themselves from the majority, and they refused it. Between taxation without any representation, and tax

No man can for a moment believe that our ancestors intended to establish over their posterity exactly the same sort of Government they had overthrown. The great object of the Constitution of the United States, in its internal operation, was, doubtless, to secure the great end of the Revolution-a limited free Government-a Government limited to those matters only which were general and common to all portions of the United States. All sectional or local interests were to be left to the States. By no other arrangement would they obtain free government by a Constitution common to so vast a Confederacy. Yet, by gradual and steady encroachments on the part of the North, and submission on the part of the South, the limitations in the Constitution have been swept away, and the Government of the United States has become consolidated, with a claim of limitless powers in its operations

It is not at all surprising, while such is the character of the Government of the United States, that it should assume to possess power over all the institutions of the country. The agitations on the subject of Slavery in the South are the natural results of the consolidation of the Government. Responsibility follows power; and if the people of the North have the power by Congress "to promote the general welfare of the United States,' by any means they deem expedient, why should they not assail and overthrow the institution of Slavery in the South? They are responsible for its continuance or existence, in proportion to their power. A majority in Congress, according to their interested and perverted views, is omnipotent. The inducements to act upon the subject of Slavery, under such circumstances, were so imperious as to amount almost to a moral necessity. To make, however, their numerical power available to rule the Union, the North must consolidate their power. It would not be united on any matter common to the whole Union-in other words, on any constitution al subject-for on such subjects divisions are as likely to exist in the North as in the South. Slavery was strictly a secitonal interest. If this could be made the

criterion of parties at the North, the North could be united in its power, and thus carry out its measures of sectional ambition, encroachment, and aggrandizement. To build up their sectional predominance in the Union, the Constitution must be first abolished by constructions; but that being done, the consolidation of the North to rule the South, by the tariff and Slavery issues, was in the obvious course of things.

their imaginations. The Union of the Constitution was a Union of slaveholding States. It rests on Slavery, by prescribing a representation in Congress for three-fifths of our slaves. There is nothing in the proceedings of the Convention which framed the Constitution to show that the Southern States would have formed any other union; and still less that they would have formed a union with more powerful non-slaveholding States, having a majority in both branches of the Legislature of the Government. They were guilty of no such folly. Time and the procli-gress of things have totally altered the relations between the Northern and Southern States since the Union was first established. That identity of feeling, interests, and institutions which once existed is gone. They are now divided between agricultural and manufactur ing and commercial States-between slaveholding and non-slaveholding States. Their institutions and industrial pursuits have made them totally different peoples. That equality in the Government between the two sections of the Union which once existed, no longer exists. We but imitate the policy of our fathers in dissolving a union with non-slaveholding confederates, and seeking a confederation with slave-holding States.

The Constitution of the ited States was an experiment. The experiment consisted in uniting under one Government different peoples, living in different mates, and having different pursuits of industry and institutions. It matters not how earefully the limitations of such a government be laid down in the constitution-its success must at least depend upon the good faith of the parties to the constitutional compact in enforcing them. It is not in the power of human language to exclude false inferences, constructions, and perversions, in any constitution; and when vast sectional interests are to be subserved involving the appropriation of countless millions of money, it has not been the usual experience of mankind that words on parchment can arrest power. The Constitution of the United States, irrespective of the interposition of the Experience has proved that slaveholding States canStates, rested on the assumption that power would not be safe in subjection to non-slaveholding States. yield to faith-that integrity would be stronger than Indeed, no people ever expect to preserve their rights interest, and that thus the limitations of the Constitu- and liberties unless they are in their own custody. To tion would be observed. The experiment has been plunder and oppress where plunder and oppression can fairly made. The Southern States, from the commence- be practiced with impunity, seems to be the natural ment of the Government, have striven to keep it with order of things. The fairest portions of the world have in the orbit prescribed by the Constitution. The ex- been turned into wildernesses, and the most civilized periment has failed. The whole Constitution, by the and prosperous communities have been impoverished constructions of the Northern people, has been swal- and ruined by Anti-Slavery fanaticism. The people of lowed up by a few words in its preamble. In their the North have not left us in doubt as to their designs reckless lust for power they seem unable to compre- and policy. United as a section in the late Presidential hend that seeming paradox, that the more power is election, they have elected as the exponent of their given to the General Government the weaker it be policy one who has openly declared that all the States comes. Its strength consists in its generality and of the United States must be made Free States or Slave limitations. To extend the scope of its power over States. It is true that among those who aided in this sectional or local interests is to raise up against it op- election, there are various shades of Anti-Slavery hosposition and resistance. In all such matters the Gen-tility. But if African Slavery in the Southern States eral Government must necessarily be a despotism, be- be the evil their political combinations affirm it to be, cause all sectional or local interests must ever be rep- the requisitions of an inexorable logic must lead them resented by a minority in the councils of the General to emancipation. If it is right to preclude or abolish Government-having no power to protect itself against Slavery in a territory, why should it be allowed to the rule of the majority. The majority, constituted remain in the States? The one is not at all more unfrom those who do not represent these sectional or constitutional than the other, according to the decisions local interests, will control and govern them. A free of the Supreme Court of the United States. And when people cannot submit to such a Government; and the it is considered that the Northern States will soon have more it enlarges the sphere of its power the greater the power to make that Court what they please, and must be the dissatisfaction it must produce, and the that the Constitution never has been any barrier whatweaker it must become. On the contrary, the more it ever to their exercise of power, what check can there abstains from usurped powers, and the more faithfully be in the unrestrained councils of the North to emanit adheres to the limitations of the Constitution, the cipation? There is sympathy in association, which stronger it is made. The Northern people have had carries men along without principle; but when there neither the wisdom nor the faith to perceive that to ob- is principle, and that principle is fortified by long exserve the limitation of the Constitution was the only isting prejudices and feelings, association is omnipotent way to its perpetuity. in party influences. In spite of all disclaimers and proUnder such a Government there must, of course, be fessions there can be but one end to the submission by many and endless "irrepressible conflicts," between the South to the rule of a sectional Anti-Slavery Govthe two great sections of the Union. The same faith- ernment at Washington; and that end, directly or lessness which has abolished the Constitution of the indirectly, must be the emancipation of the slaves of United States, will not fail to carry out the sectional the South. The hypocrisy of thirty years-the faithpurposes for which it has been abolished. There must lessness of their whole course from the commencement be conflict; and the weaker section of the Union can of our union with them-show that the people of the only find peace and liberty in an independence of the non-slaveholding North are not and cannot be safe North. The repeated efforts made by South Carolina, associates of the slaveholding South under a comin a wise conservatism, to arrest the progress of the mon Government. Not only their fanaticism, but General Government in its fatal progress to consoli- their erroneous views of the principles of free govdation, have been unsupported and denounced as faith- eruments, render it doubtful whether, separated from less to the obligations of the Constitution by the very the South, they can maintain a free Government among men and States who were destroying it by their usurpa- themselves. Brute numbers with them is the great eletions. It is now too late to reform or restore the Government of free Government. A majority is infallible and ment of the United States. All confidence in the North omnipotent. "The right divine to rule in kings" is only is lost in the South. The faithlessness of half a century transferred to their majority. The very object of all conhas opened a gulf of separation between them which no stitutions, in free, popular Governments, is to restrain the promises or engagements can fill. majority. Constitutions, therefore, according to their theory, must be most unrighteous inventions, restricting liberty. None ought to exist, but the body politic ought simply to have a political organization, to bring out and enforce the will of a majority. This theory may be harmless in a small community, having an identity of interests and pursuits, but over a vast State-still more, over a vast Confederacy, having various and conflicting interests and pursuits-it is a remorseless despotism. In resisting it, as applicable to ourselves, we are vindicating the great cause of free government, more important, perhaps, to the world than the existence of the United States. Nor in resisting it, do we intend to depart from the safe instrumentality the system of government we have established with them requires. In separating from them we invade no rights-no interest of theirs. We violate no obligation of duty to them. As separate, independent States in Convention, we made the Constitu

It cannot be believed that our ancestors would have assented to any union whatever with the people of the North if the feelings and opinions now existing among them had existed when the Constitution was framed. There was then no tariff-no negro fanaticism. It was the delegates from New England who proposed in the Convention which framed the Constitution, to the delegates from South Carolina and Georgia, that if they would agree to give Congress the power of regulating commerce by a majority, that they would support the extension of the African slave-trade for twenty years. African Slavery existed in all the States but one. The dea that they would be made to pay that tribute to their Northern confederates which they had refused to pay to Great Britain, or that the institution of African Slavery would be made the grand basis of a sectional organization of the North to rule the South, never crossed

tion of the United States with them; and as separate, independent States, each State acting for itself, we adopted it. South Carolina, acting in her sovereign capacity, now thinks proper to secede from the Union. She did not part with her sovereignty in adopting the Constitution. The last thing a State can be presumed to have surrendered is her sovereignty. Her sovereignty is her life. Nothing but a clear, express grant, can alienate it. Inference should be dumb. Yet it is not at all surprising that those who have construed away all the limitations of the Constitution, should also by construction claim the annihilation of the sovereignty of the States. Having abolished all barriers to their omnipotence by their faithless constructions in the operations of the General Government, it is most natural that they should endeavor to do the same toward us in the States. The truth is, they having violated the express provisions of the Constitution, it is at an end as a compact. It is morally obligatory only on those who choose to accept its perverted terms. South Carolina, deeming the compact not only violated in particular features, but virtually abolished by her Northern confederates, withdraws herself as a party from its obligatious. The right to do so is denied by her Northern confederates. They desire to establish a despotism, not only omnipotent in Congress, but omnipotent over the States; and as if to manifest the imperions necessity of our secession, they threaten us with the sword, to coerce submission to their rule.

ized world, and pass down, we trust, to the remotest ages. We ask you to join us in forming a confederacy of Slaveholding States.

The latter paper is as follows:

Citizens of the slaveholding States of the United States, circumstances beyond our control have placed us in the van of the great controversy between the Northern and Southern States. We would have preferred that other States should have assumed the position we now occupy. Independent ourselves, we disclaim any design or desire to lead the councils of the other Southern States. Providence has cast our lot together, by extending over us an identity of pursuits, interests, and institutions. South Carolina desires no destiny separated from yours. To be one of a great slaveholding confederacy, stretching its arms over a territory larger than any Power in Europe possesses-with population four times greater than that of the whole United States when they achieved their independence of the British Empire-with productions which make our existence more important to the world than that of any other people inhabiting it-with common institutions to defend, and common dangers to encounter-we ask your sympathy and confederation. While constituting a portion of the United States, it has been your statesmanship which has guided it in its mighty strides to power and expansion. In the field, as in the Cabinet, you have led the way to its renown and grandeur. You have loved the Union, in whose service your great statesmen have labored, and your great soldiers have fought and conquered -not for the material benefits it conferred, but with the faith of a generous and devoted chivalry. You have long lingered and hoped over the shattered remains of a broken Constitution. Compromise after compromise, formed by your concessions, has been trampled under foot by your Northern confederates. All fraternity of feeling between the North and the South is lost, or has been converted into hate; and we of the South are at last driven together by the stern destiny which controls the existence of nations. Your bitter experience of the faithlessness and rapacity of your Northern confederates may have been necessary to evolve those great principles of free government, upon which the liberties of the world depend, and to prepare you for the grand mission of vindicating and re-establishlishing them. We rejoice that other nations should be satisfied with their institutions, Self-complacency is a great element of happiness, with nations as with individuals. We are satisfied with ours. If they prefer a system of industry in which capital and labor are in perpetual conflict-and chronic starvation keeps down the natural increase of population-and a man is worked out in eight years-and the law ordains that children shall be worked only ten hours a day-and the sabre and bayonet are the instruments of order-be it so. It is their affair, not ours. We prefer, however, our system of industry, by which labor and capital are identified in interest, and capital, therefore, protects labor; by which our population doubles every twenty years; by which starvation is unknown, and abundance crowns the land; by which order is preserved by an unpaid police, and the Dost fertile regions of the world where the Caucasian cannot labor are brought into usefulness by the labor of the African, and the whole world is blessed by our own productions. All we demand of other peoples is to be let alone to work out our own high destinies. United together, and we must be the most independent, as we are the most important among the nations of the world. United together, and we require no other instrument to conquer peace than our beneficent productions. United together, and we must be a great, free and prosperous people, whose renown must spread throughout the civil

DECLARATION OF INDEPENdence of soUTH CAROLINA, DONE IN CONVENTION, DECEMBER 24, 1860. The State of South Carolina having determined to resume her separate and equal place among nations, deems it due to herself, to the remaining United States of North America, and to the nations of the world, that she should declare the causes which have led to this act.

In the year 1765, that portion of the British Empire embracing Great Britain undertook to make laws for the government of that portion composed of the thirteen American Colonies. A struggle for the right of self-government ensued, which resulted on the 4th of July, 1776, in a Declaration by the Colonies "that they are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States, and that as free and independent States they have full power to levy war, conclude peace, contract alliances, establish commerce, and to do all other acts and things which independent States may of right do."

They further solemnly declared that whenever any "form of government becomes destructive of the ends for which it was established, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it, and to institute a new government." Deeming the Government of Great Britain to have become destructive of these ends, they declared that the Colonies "are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the States of Great Britain is, and ought to be totally dis solved."

In pursuance of this Declaration of Independence, each of the thirteen States proceeded to exercise its separate sovereignty; adopted for itself a Constitution and appointed officers for the administration of government in all its departments-legislative, executive, and judicial. For purposes of defence, they united their arms and their counsels; and, in 1778, they entered into a league known as the Articles of Confederation, whereby they agreed to intrust the administration of their external relations to a common agent, known as the Congress of the United tates, expressly declaring, in the first article, "that each State retains its sovereignty, freedom, and independence, and every power, jurisdiction, and right which is not, by this confederation, expressly delegated to the United States in Congress assembled.

Under this confederation the war of the Revolution was carried on, and on the 3d of September, 1783, the contest ended, and a definite treaty was signed by Great Britain, in which she acknowledged the independence of the Colonies in the following terms:

"Article 1. His Britannic Majesty acknowledges the said United States, viz.: New Hampshire, Massachusetts Bay, Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Caro lina, and Georgia, to be free, sovereign, and independent his heirs and successors, relinquishes all claims to the States; that he treats with them as such; and for himself, government, proprietary, and territorial rights of the same and every part thereof."

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In 1787. deputies were appointed by the States to revise the Articles of Confederation, and on 17th of September, 1787, these deputies recommended for the adoption of the States the articles of union known as the Constitution of the United States.

The parties to whom this Constitution was submitted were the several sovereign States. They were to agree or disagree; and when nine of them agreed, the compact was to take effect among those concurring, and the General Government, as the common agent, was then to be invested with their authority.

If only nine of the thirteen States had concurred, the other four would have remained as they then wereseparate, sovereign States, independent of any of the provisions of the Constitution. In fact, two of the States did not accede to the Constitution until long after it had gone into operation among the other eleven, and during that interval they exercised the functions of an independent nation.

By this Constitution, certain duties were charged on the several States, and the exercise of certain of their powers restrained, which necessarily implied their continued ex


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