It was soon found that perfect harmony could not be expected to prevail in that Convention. There were too many ambitious men there to promote serenity of thought and manner, and the sweetness of concord. They were nearly all aspirants for high positions in the new empire about to be formed; and each felt himself, like Bottom the Weaver, capable of sustaining any character, from that of a "Lion " to " Moonshine." The South Carolina politicians were particularly clamorous for honors and emoluments. Their State, they said, had taken the lead-struck the first blow-in the revolution, and they deserved the highest seats. Judge McGrath, who laid aside his official robes at Charleston, sent word that he would like to put them on again at Montgomery as Attorney-General. R. Barnwell Rhett, one of the most violent of the politicians, thought himself particularly fitted to be Secretary of War; and because his claims were not allowed, he wrote complaining letters to his son, the editor of the Charleston Mercury, some of the originals of which are now before me, and are rich in revelations of disappointed ambition. On the 16th of February, Rhett said in a letter, written at Montgomery: "They have not put me forward for office, it is true. I have two enemies in the [South Carolina] delegation. One friend, who, I believe, wants no office himself, and will probably act on the same principle for his friend-and the rest, personally, are indifferent to me, whilst some of them are not indifferent to themselves. There is no little jealousy of me by a part of them, and they will never agree to recommend me to any position whatever under the Confederacy. I expect nothing, therefore, from the delegation, lifting me to position. Goodbye, my dear son." Rhett and men of his way of thinking had counselled violence and outrage from the beginning, but they were restrained in the Convention by more sensible men like Stephens and Hill of Georgia, Brooks of Mississippi, and Perkins of Louisiana.
The sessions of the Convention were mostly held in secret. A committee of thirteen was appointed, with C. G. Memminger as chairman, to report a plan for a provisional Confederate government, and it was agreed to call the Convention a "Congress." The Legislature of Alabama voted a loan of half a million dollars to enable the Secessionists to set the new government in motion; and on the same day (February 7, 1861), the committee reported a plan, the basis of which was the National Constitution with some important modifications. They gave the name of the government organized under it the Confederate States of America. This was a misnomer; for no States as States were parties to the affair; it was only a confederation of politicians without the sanction of the people.
The constitution of the provisional government was adopted by the unanimous "vote of the States " on the 8th of February. On the following day, the members of the Convention took the oath of allegiance to the Confederate States of America; and then they proceeded to elect Jefferson Davis of Mississippi provisional president, and Alexander H. Stephens of Georgia vice-president of the Confederacy. The vast multitude who thronged the