well for our cause if the policy of our Government was more bold and desperate. By the heavens above us, were I the director of public affairs I would have Northern cities fired and conspicuous Northern men slain, until the capitalist should feel that this war was not confined to the South, and that no spot escaped the deluge, and no head was safe, wherever it might rest. Maybe it is as well I have no control of anything in this revolution.
The inclosed letter is not for the prints.
Yours, truly, &c.,
LEBANON, VA., March 23, 1862.
That I now address you springs from a sincere desire for you to redeem yourself in the estimation of your friends; also from the fact that existing circumstances offer a new and favorable opportunity to appeal successfully to the people of Kentucky to pursue the only course remaining open to them consistent with a just pride or likely to promote their material interests.
It is scarcely necessary for me to refer to the circumstances which produced an estrangement between us. You cannot fail to remember the pertinacity with which I urged you not to call that extra session of the Legislature, which stripped you of power and actually usurped your constitutional functions of commander of the military force of the State; how, pointing out to you that the Federal power meant to concentrate troops at Cairo, I advised you to occupy and fortify Paducah, Smithland, and Columbus before a single Federal regiment had marched to its rendezvous, thus to secure the navigation of the Tennessee and Cumberland, which covered Nashville and the railway connection between Louisville and Memphis; how, even then, I preferred the service which would took to the maintenance of the sovereignty and the promotion of the interest of my native State to any other or more enlarged theater of action.
You must now concede that the chapter of military operations, as it has unfolded, was foretold to you with singular accuracy, and that the machinations of political adversaries, which have nearly culminated in your own ruin, were anticipated with a fidelity which has not fallen short of the reality.
I refer to these things to prove that I was then true to your fame and to the welfare of the State. When I saw that you were animated by other counsels I withdrew from intimate intercourse, for my confidence in your inclination to act was gone. I never lost confidence in your sentiments. I never have doubted that your heart was warm in the cause of the South, and I do not now doubt it, or I should not take the trouble to make this appeal to you in your own behalf-in behalf of Kentucky-in behalf of all the States now engaged in this fearful struggle for life and liberty.
Few men have ever lived to whom destiny has offered such opportunities as have been presented to you. Pardon me for saying few have so missed the chance of immortalizing their names by benefactions to their country and their race.
You have had the occasions when you could have taken the lead of a great revolution, waged for the conversation of the equality of the States and for the preservation of the constitutional liberties of the people. You failed to act, and the occasion passed away unimproved.