should shrink from the reconstruction of a union that will fasten its coils around us as the loathsome reptile would around its doomed victim? Oh, no, the Union cannot be reconstructed-no, never. It then being a fixed fact that the Union cannot be reconstructed, and that henceforth the two sections must work out their own respective forms of civilization under separate governments, what should the North do? Can coercion reconstruct a Union which was a compact founded upon mutual sympthy and good will between independent confederate States? I am sure every thinking man at the North will answer no; a forced union would be a curse to both sections.
Can anything be gained by civil war? The Democracy and conservative men at the North must answer this question. The issues of such a war would be fearful indeed. It would inevitably bring the North in conflict with England and France. We have little or no shipping to care for. England and France would carry our cotton under their flags and bring us wares and merchandise in return, and while the North was waging a bootless war on land letters of marque and reprisal would be sweeping her commerce from the ocean. But let it be the privilege of the Democracy and conservative men of the North and Northwest to roll back this tide of threatened civil war. They can do it, and under a Northern confederacy strangle the Black Republican monster that has robbed them of the rich inheritance of their fathers. Let theSouth alone and suffer her to form her government in peace. Then such a commercial treaty and compact can be entered into by both nations as will secure the uninterrupted march of each in its onward progress. These are my views plainly and frankly expressed, and I feel satisfied that your judgment will assent to their correctness.
A word now about Fort Sumter and I will not inflict you further. We are all ready for the attack of that fortification. No movement will be made, however, until the action of the Southern Congress is known. If when it is demanded with other Southern forts by the commission from the Southern Confederacy it is not given up it will then be attacked and I can assure you it will be no child's play. The men who haire into the Star of the West with an armed force on board of her with the guns of Fort Sumter frowning upon them with threatening destruction can be trusted in times of danger. Our people are quiet, coold and determined. We can bombard it simultaneously from seven different points. It cannot be re-enforced.
I trust, however, it will not come to this. When it is evident that a Southern confederacy will be formed and recognized by foreign powers I hope there will be good sense enough at least among the leaders of the Republican party if not in the rank and file to see the wisdom of withdrawing the troops and arranging the terms of separation in an amicable manner and on the principles of justice and equality. * * *
I remain, as ever, yours, sincerely,
F. M. ROBERTSON.
CHARLESTON, S. C., February 15, 1861.
S. J. ANDERSON, Esq., New York.
DEAR ANDERSON: Yours with the inclosed slip was received this morning. I am inclined to think that there is not another man in the city of New York who has the moral courage to do what you did on the reception of the news of the organization of the Confederate States of America. I gave the slip to the Mercury and it will appear in the