Tuesday, December 28, 2010

What Zeb Vance thought we should do?

Zebulon Baird Vance, still a representative in the US House, wrote local lawyer Walter W. Lenoir in Caldwell County on December 26, 1860. His letter outlines what Vance thought the states should do in regard to the dissolution of the Union:

“Many think we could do better, and the method is to form a great middle confederacy, composed of the border slave and border free states. In this way we could preserve this Capital, the public lands, the form and prestige of the old government, secure greater homogeneousness, and finally re-organize and reconstruct the whole Union around this grand and over-shadowing nucleus! … And I think the only way that the Union can be reconstructed and these cotton states be brought to treat us with proper respect, is this idea of a great Central Confederation. It could dictate terms of compromise which Georgia would be compelled to accept, and the withdrawal of Georgia would break the back bone of the whole seceding Kingdom. As for New England, we would kick it out if it refused to secede, and would never let it back unless as the single state of New England, with only two Sumners in the Senate to play the blackguard. What do you think of it?”

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