War of the Rebellion: Serial 127 Page 0159 CONFEDERATE AUTHORITIES.

Search Civil War Official Records

We have determined to listen to no more compromises with the Northern States. They have proved faithless in all their pledges heretofore given, and we can have no assurance from such a people that they would carry out any offer or settlement which may through their fears be now extorted from them. Georgia warms Maryland against any patched-up adjustment of existing difficulties. While Maryland would feel bound in honor to abide such adjustment in good faith if made, her Northern confederates would, upon the first occasion which promised advantage to their cupidity, entirely disregard and violate their compact.

Even of the slavery were now settled to the entire satisfaction of her people, Georgia would be unwilling again to confederate with a people whose views of the power of the Federal Government are so entirely different from her own. While a member of the late confederacy, she did not yield her sovereignty as a free and independent State except so far as was granted by the express letter of the Constitution.

The power of the Federal Government, she has always contended, was restricted, limited, and confined within the letter of that instrument. In the opinion of our people, the framers of the Constitution rested its support and power upon the consent of the people of the different confederated States, and never contemplated the employment of force against a sovereign State to coerce its submission to or continuance in a confederation deemed by its people oppressive and tyrannical. Our fathers had but too recently felt the necessity which forced a loyal and true people to throw off a government which proudly claimed to be the only power on the globe whose citizens were secured in the enjoyment of constitutional liberty. With the experience of the then recent past the statesmen of 1788-'89 looked with far-seeing sagacity to the possibility of the loss of their liberties so dearly won, unless the new government about to be adopted for their protection should be so limited and confined in its powers and so arranged in its details as to receive its entire force, efficacy, and power from the enlightened public sentiment of the country; the full, free, and cordial assent of the governed. This has always been the view entertained at the South in regard to the powers of the Federal Government. Indeed, one of the New England States, one which now denies the sovereignty of the several States, and is urging the Government at Washington to use the power of the Army and Navy to reduce to subjection the seceding Southern States, on no less than two occasions in its past history has claimed for itself the right to judge of the infractions of the Federal Constitution, and to assert its right and duty to dissolve all further connection with the Federal Union. The doctrine of State rights and State sovereignty, as enunciated and declared in the "Virginia-Kentucky" resolutions of '79, we have held to be the chief safeguards of the liberties of the American people. For the first time in our national history this doctrine has been ignored and denied by a commanding majority of the States of the Union.

Our safety requires that we should look now alone to our own efforts and resources for the protection of our liberties and property so emphatically denied to us by our Northern associates.

Maryland, in the opinion of Georgia, cannot with safety to her citizens continue longer in confederation with the States of the North. And while we would not attempt to advise a people of such known intelligence and patriotism as to their duty in this trying emergency,