The following is a transcribed speech version of my 1995 small book of the same title. This speech was given at a seminar held in Gulfport, Mississippi April 13, 2000. It is long so I will break it up into two parts…

Dispelling The Myths About Dixie

I am going to begin this evening by reading a text of Scripture from the Old Testament and then I’m going to bring you back to it at the end of this seminar. The text comes from the Book of Micah Chapter 2:1-2, “Woe to them that devise iniquity, and work evil upon their beds! when the morning is light, they practise it, because it is in the power of their hand. And they covet fields, and take them by violence; and houses, and take them away: so they oppress a man and his house, even a man and his heritage.” Again, we’ll come back to this text during our close.

We live in an age of guilt manipulation, and we are forced to endure politics of guilt and pity. In our generation you can no longer find leaders motivated by truth and principle…only expediency. This is an age of RIGHTS (plural) not RIGHT (singular). Nowadays if a small minority can stimulate enough guilt and pity through their whiny emotionalism, they can get just about anything they ask for…or get away with just about anything they choose to do. Just witness this past weekend at the Black Spring Break.

As we open up our study this evening, permit me to paint a picture for you. I would like for you to imagine just who it is that I describe (please listen very carefully). I come from a race who were oppressed for centuries. My people long suffered under the tyrannical rule of vicious despots. Our villages were overrun and sacked. Certain of my people were enslaved. Many of us were removed from our homeland to a nation far across the great ocean. The flag of our conqueror is therefore offensive to me. After all, we suffered greatly under that flag. We were forced to endure having our books burned and were forbidden to teach our history to our children. Our songs were banned along with our instruments. Some of us were even prohibited from using our family names. Our weapons were contraband. We were a people brought very low!

OK, who am I? Of what race do I belong?

The answer may surprise some of you. The person I describe is me! I am of the Scottish branch of the Celtic race. We are a people who have suffered great oppression through the annals of time. At one time the tyrants that sat on the throne of England banned our tartans, the playing of the bagpipes were outlawed, and many were forbidden to use their clan name. We had our monuments destroyed, our writings burned and my people were forbidden to teach our history to our children. The Stone of Scone, the stone from which our Scottish kings were received their coronation, was removed to London where it sat for centuries under the English throne to show to the world that my people were under the subjugation of the English crown.

Oh my goodness! Should I run down to the mayor’s office or go before the Board of Supervisors and demand that the Union Jack be removed from historical displays? I could claim that the English flag is offensive to me and all Mississippians of Scottish, Welsh or Irish descent. But would it be right for me to do so? After all it is an historical display. And there are no English monarchs seeking to enslave me now. There are currently no Englishmen seeking to oppress me. In short, there is no Englishman alive that I can blame for the atrocities committed against my people. Why should I wage war against their flag now? I won’t. I’ll mind my own business and concern myself with the symbols of my people. There is a principle here that could be applied in manifold ways, much to the consternation of the multitudes. I have Native American ancestry. Should I use that to have the US flag removed? After all, it was the flag that flew over the massacre of the Indian nations. It was the flag representing every treaty that the US government broke. You see, we could go on and on…it is ludicrous! But I am not here this evening to wage war on any flag. I am here to battle against the popular, yet false, view of history that is being taught to Southerners today.

The movie Braveheart opened with these words: “History is written by those who have hanged heroes.” Indeed it is the winners of a war; not the losers that set about telling a version of the story that tends to justify the victors while vilifying the conquered enemy. Anything that would contradict this synthesis of “truth” is quite naturally suppressed. We find this occurring throughout the annals of recorded history. We see it quite vividly in the Scottish Wars of Independence and elsewhere.

In the case of the War Between the States, the myth-management of history has really had its day. Perhaps no modern history has ever been more corrupted than our own, which is really odd considering the fact that we are only talking 135 years of time. Source documents are still available for anyone to peruse or study – that is, anyone left in this country who may have the least concern for the past: our heritage – our culture – our people – our connection: that which really, by God’s grace, makes us what we are.

As John Crowe Ransom wrote in 1930, “It is out of fashion in these days to look backward rather than forward. About the only American given to it is some unreconstructed Southerner, who persists in his regard for a certain terrain, a certain history, and a certain inherited way of living.” If it was “out of fashion” in 1930, what of it now?

We hear it often: “Why bring up the past?” Lately, we’ve heard it repeated over and over again in the Letters to the Editor, in news commentary, and in the words of politicians and elsewhere. Well, I’ll tell you why it is so important. As Pätrick Henry once said, “I know no way of judging the future but by the past” – the “lamp of experience” as he called it. The past, then, is a teacher. It teaches things tried and true – it chronicles the success and failure of various philosophies, theories and imaginations of men…unlike the future which is cloudy and uncertain.

It is odd that we are being conditioned in this day and age to forget the past. In former times, families recalled the stories of their ancestors and the noble causes for which they fought. Today, few people know anything of their ancestors and most people can not even tell you the name of any family member past their grandparents. They don’t know the history of their family name. They don’t know where their family originated, the roots of the family tree. They know nothing of the wars their ancestors fought or of the motivation behind the fighting. And what’s worse of all, most do not even care about such things.

Have you noticed how the movies have changed over the years? When I was young we watched Westerns or we watched movies about the World Wars. We watched movies about the Alamo, about Napoleon, about Genghis Khan – past historical figures and events. But what do we have today? Movies are future oriented and fantastical (rather than past and historical): all these apocalyptic scenarios – space movies – aliens, etc.

You see, the past is out. We have a new politically-correct agenda that we are told to embrace. This agenda would not have us to be students of history, where we might possibly learn something and see through the tyranny and injustice of our civil government today. We are quickly labeled an old-fashioned relic, one who is “living in the past” if we do not buy in to the new scheme of things. Worse yet, it is becoming even “dangerous” to not acknowledge the politically-correct god of the New World Order of things.

But not all of us are willing to be duped. In fact, it is a matter of great honor to me to say that I am an indigenous Mississippian – that I possess roots that run deep into the native soil of this land stained with the blood of my Confederate ancestors who fought to preserve: What – slavery? No! those poor ole Mississippi dirt farmers that I hail from didn’t own any. No, my forefathers, like yours, fought to preserve their culture and their liberties – not only for themselves and their dear ones, but also for their descendants – you and me, and our children and posterity.

You see they were more far-sighted than the self-centered myopic folks today who are only concerned with themselves and at most their very near relations. Our forefathers had a different worldview. They looked forward to succeeding generations yet unborn and they made decisions and took actions on things that would affect their future offspring. Today we are so present-oriented we ignore the past and we do not plan far into the future.

Because our people are so ignorant of their own history and heritage, and because they are so indifferent about it, they have allowed themselves to fall victim to the history revisionists. They do not know how to respond to the vicious vilification of their forebears, and the enemies of the Old South run roughshod right over them.

I am witnessing in my life somewhat of the struggle of my Scottish ancestors. It is like déjà vu. Our symbols are being eradicated, Our songs are being forbidden at public events. The names of our heroes are being removed from streets, cities, schools and other places. Our true history is not being taught to our children through the institution of public schools which, by the way, were set up in the South after the war with the sole desire to indoctrinate our children. Folks, what we are witnessing is ethnic cleansing – it is cultural genocide under the guise of “improving race relations.”

I have talked to public schools children who admit being taught to be ashamed of their Confederate ancestors, to be ashamed of the Confederate Flag and so forth. They are being made to believe that their ancestors were a rebellious, slave-whipping, sinful rabble who were not interested in preserving the wonderful country that their forefathers established. And that the symbols of the South are symbols of racism and hatred. And where are the parents stepping in to put a stop to this. Why, most don’t even care. They are too busy working toward that new bass boat than to worry about preserving their heritage and culture.

Let me tell you something. If last week’s “Spring Break” was horrifying to you, you better not sit still any longer. That uncontrolled “Sex Fest” was promoted by a small group of blacks that are fighting for the annihilation of our symbols. If they continue to get their way, you will see more and more of that sort of behavior in public. For three days the law was suspended for the benefit of the lawless. It was a great insult to the intelligent Black community – who, by the way overwhelmingly support the right for us to celebrate our heritage and display our symbols. Of course, this is contrary to what the Sun Herald Newspaper would like to portray.

Folks, if you think this controversy is all about a little flag flying on the beach among seven others – you are wrong, very wrong. The attack is about what the symbol represents. It is never about a piece of cloth, but what is exemplified in that cloth.

Just recently, the Highway Patrol chief called for the State flag symbols to be removed from all patrol vehicles. The Jackson city council has removed the State Flag from its chamber. In Richmond the General Lee mural was burned. Where does this end?

This evening we will attempt to show why knowledgeable Southerners will never concede to the eradication of our heritage and symbols. I am going to address in general terms many of the prevailing myths about the South. I don’t ask that you believe what I say. I only ask that you study these things and judge for yourselves. Your ancestors deserve nothing less!

Of course, we will only be able to scratch the surface of these myths this evening. My intention is to cause folks to think, and to question the trash we’ve all been taught by the media and in public schools with textbooks written by the victors.

As the Holy Scripture reads: we should, “Buy the truth and sell it not.” We should seek to know the truth and seek to preserve the truth. I believe Southerners have an obligation to their forebears to do just that. I believe we have a duty to preserve the honor of their names and their deeds. And, further, a duty to persevere in their cause of preserving liberty from the hands of tyrants.

So, let’s begin our journey through the myths about Dixie:

MYTH #1: This Country is Founded on Northern Principles

It’s incredible how people in other sections of America view Southerners. Many see us as a bunch of poor, ignorant, racist, peanut-raising bubbas who can’t speak right and, of course, we all have sheets hanging in our closets. They see us as uneducated and unable to exert any real influence in American society. They think that’s the way it is and that’s the way it’s always been.

But let’s open the pages of history and let the facts speak for themselves. Let me begin with a question: How many of the first nine presidential elections went to Northerners? You think – maybe 7 or 8? The answer is only one, John Adams. The 1st 8 out of 9 elections went to Southerners.

How about the next seven elections? We should certainly expect the reverse since the population had greatly shifted to the North’s favor. Well, four out of the next seven elections still went to Southerners.

Another interesting point is this: Every Northerner served one term only, all the way up to 1860 and the war, and every Southerner except Polk (and Taylor who died in office) served two terms (which was the Gentlemen’s limit). It’s as if the Northerner’s weren’t up to the task. They were always voted out after one term. Besides the presidents, up until the war, there were 23 of 36 Speakers of the House, 34 Presidents pro-tem of the Senate, 20 Supreme Court justices and the list goes on.

It is also interesting to note that almost every President after the War up until the year 1901 was a Yankee Military Officer. Of them, all were Generals except William McKinley who had been a Major. The point is: before the war, in the days of the constitutional republic, the South overwhelmingly provided the leadership. After the war, and the birth of the American Empire, the voice of the South was silenced – and with her the principles that the Republic was founded upon.

John S. Tilley speaks about the five great movements that ushered in the birth of the republic:

  • The First Continental Congress which sent to the English king a Declaration of Rights. The President of this Congress was Peyton Randolph, a Southerner.
  • The agitation for armed resistance against the British. It’s great orator and leader was Pätrick Henry, a Southerner.
  • The Declaration of Independence. Its author was Thomas Jefferson, a Southerner.
  • The War of Independence. Our Commander-in-Chief was George Washington, a Southerner.
  • The adoption of the Constitution. Its “father” was James Madison, a Southerner.

That’s right, we find the Southern influence stirring us up to resist tyranny and fight for liberty, we find the Southern influence giving us the Declaration of Independence, and we find the Southern influence on the pages of the Constitution. And, yes, it was a Southerner who led the seceding colonies to victory. Now, while we speak here in general terms and do not wish to belittle any influence of Northerners, the greatest influence was emphatically Southern. In fact, if it had not been for Southrons, we would still be an English possession.

There are numerous other great Southerners from this period of time. George Mason, who was instrumental in the Bill of Rights. Chief Justice John Marshall, James Monroe, John Randolph and many others. When the country began to expand westward, who were it’s leading forces? Thomas Jefferson promoted the Louisiana Purchase, which nearly doubled the size of the country. Then two Southerners, Lewis and Clark, were sent out to explore it. In fact, the westward expansion moved quicker in the Southern part of the country. We had pioneers moving into Tennessee and the surrounding areas before the Northerners had scarcely set foot out of New York and Boston!

Andrew Jackson, another Southron, led our armies to victory against the British at the Battle of New Orleans. James K. Polk guided our government during the War with Mexico and led to our securing about 1 Million square miles of new territory which included Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and California (we will try not to hold the latter against him). Our great Davy Crockett, Jim Bowie and others laid down their lives at The Alamo and saved Texas from Santa Ana’s massive army. If it were not for them, Texas would still be a province of Mexico (and if the Feds don’t leave that great State alone – it will one day again be a province of Mexico).

I’ll give you an example of Northern indoctrination. I often ask public school children where the first permanent settlement in this country was located. The answer is always the same, “Why Plymouth Rock, of course!” I have never heard a one of them say Jamestown in Virginia. Their eyes light up as they talk of the pilgrims who first settled the land and gave us Thanksgiving Day. That’s well and good but that is not the correct answer. Jamestown, in Virginia, was settled years before Plymouth. It seems as though the history taught today would rob the South of any “firsts” or any great contribution to the founding and growth of the old United States of America.

The Bottom Line: The South produced most of the men who we call the “father’s of our Nation.” They gave us a beautiful political environment in which to live and prosper. So we find it a myth to say: “This Country is founded on Northern principles.”

MYTH#2: It Was a War of Brother Against Brother

We are forever hearing that the War for Southern Independence was a war of brother against brother. While this was literally true in a few isolated instances, it was certainly false in the main.

The demographics bring this into view. There may have been a better balance in the colonial days, but by the 1860’s the people and culture of the Northern States (particularly New England) was significantly different from the Southern States. While there were many English early on in the South, the frontier was constantly being expanded and settled by Celtic people: Scottish, Irish, Scotch-Irish and the Welsh. There was also a sprinkling of the Calvinistic Huguenots of France. In the North there was a much greater diversity of people and a much greater percentage of continental Europeans.

You can look at the surnames of our ancestors who settled Mississippi and you can look at the names of the early towns. They were Celtic. At one time it was required of the postmaster in Waynesboro that he be bilingual. He was required to speak both English and Gaelic. You see, the South was agrarian and the Celts were a pastoral people.

Things were different above the Mason-Dixon Line. The North had become increasingly more industrial. The South favored free trade, while the North insisted on protective tariffs.

Politically, the South was conservative and a friend to Edmund Burke. The North had become increasingly radical and looked to Rousseau, Voltaire, and the Jacobins of France for their enlightenment. Keep in mind I’m speaking here in general terms! When it came to religion, the South was orthodox and believed in the inspiration of the Bible. The North had rejected the Bible and the “Old Paths” in favor of Transcendentalism, Unitarianism and other new-fangled forms of religion. They were rationalists. The South is called the “Bible Belt” today because we still have the remnants of that which had departed much earlier in the North. That’s why is extremely repulsive to see professing Christians participating today in the vilification of their ancestors. I am tired of reading about pastors in the newspaper whining about how the flag is so divisive and pleading for unity. Folks, there can only be unity in truth. Light and darkness doesn’t dwell together. These men are condemning many of the greatest Christians that have ever walked North American soil. However, it should not be surprising to us. The pulpits of our land are filled with spineless liberal capons, who are more concerned about not offending someone in the congregation than they are preaching the whole counsel of God. May God once more shine the light of his countenance upon this dry and thirsty land! That is a subject for another lecture.

You see, then, it wasn’t really a war of brother against brother. Even though there were warm sentiments at one time between the States, they had become an increasingly different people…they had different cultures, different dialects, and (thank the Lord) different foods. It was really two nations dwelling together all along.

MYTH#3: Economics had nothing to do with the War

Oh yes, we are told it was all fought over slavery. But before we look at the economics – let me give you some statistics that you may not be aware of:

There had become an imbalance of power. As you can see below the scale was fairly balanced when the nation was founded. The Constitution had this balance built into it:

Census of 1790:
North: 1,968,000
South: 1,963,000

Census of 1860:
North: 22,721,000
South:  8,722,400               (Whites 5,090,200 – Negroes 3,632,200)

CENSUS: 1790 1800 1810 1820 1830 1840 1850
NORTH 57 77 104 133 141 135 144
SOUTH 53 65 79 90 100 88 90
MAJORITY 4 12 25 43 41 47 54

 

The chart clearly shows the South’s declining power in Congress. This imbalance of power led to legislation that favored the North over the South. It was a double whammy. First of all, the Southern States had to shoulder a larger per capita share of the revenue generated for the operation of our country, over ¾. This money was then allocated mainly to the Northern States for internal improvements to aid the industrialists.

You see, during most of the antebellum period the main bone of contention was the tariff. It was the chief source of Federal revenue. Ludwell Johnson remarked: “The growth of Northern manufacturing during and after the War of 1812 created a demand for protection against competition from cheap foreign goods. The South, on the other hand, opposed a high tariff because it increased the planter’s cost of living and cost of production, restricted foreign markets for Southern commodities, and, through high profits and inequitable Federal expenditures, transferred wealth from South to North.” That’s right, the North was becoming wealthier at the South’s expense.

You see, the South was not always the poor section of the country. We were once prosperous and wealthy. In fact, according to the 1860 census, the per capita wealth of the South was twice that of the North. Over three hundred Southern counties were better off than the wealthiest county of the North. In the same census, the three most affluent States listed in order were: Mississippi, South Carolina, Louisiana, Alabama, and Georgia. As William Gilmore Simms wrote in 1850’s, “There is little or no poverty in the South.”

The South also opposed Federal subsidies for internal improvements and private business. These funds were being wildly disbursed in the North creating such a strain on the treasury that legislators were compelled to raise the tariff.

Listen to the words of Senator Benton, not a Southern man but a New Englander: “I feel for the sad changes which have taken place in the South during these last fifty years. Before the revolution, it was the seat of wealth as well as of hospitality. Money and all it commanded abounded there. But how now? All this is reversed. Wealth has fled from the South and settled in regions North of the Potomac; and this in the face of the fact that the South in four staples alone has exported produce since the Revolution, to the value of $800,000,000; and the North has exported comparatively nothing. Such an export would indicate unparalleled wealth, but what is the fact? In the place of wealth a universal pressure for money was felt – not enough for current expenses – the price of all property down – the country drooping and languishing – towns and cities decaying – and the frugal habits of the people pushed to the verge of universal self-denial for the preservation of their family estates.” He correctly identifies how wealth sucked out of South poured into Northern coffers.

This all began in 1828 when the tariff soared to around 50%. This led to John C. Calhoun’s doctrine of Nullification. He maintained that if the Federal Government legislated laws that were detrimental to a state, that state had a right to nullify it (that is, to reject it). This led to much tension in both sections.

The tariff had dropped to around 18-19% before the States began to secede. Lincoln’s platform had called for a rise in the tariff and the South expected the worse. Indeed it climbed to 47.56% on durable goods during the war. Even after the war it remained high. It was in excess of over 40% until 1914 (except 1873-1874 – 38%). In the Confederate States the tariff stayed around 10-12%.

So it is a horrible myth to say that economics had nothing to do with the war. As we shall see, these policies provoked the South to secede and the loss of tariff revenue led the Northerners to invade the South. The South knew things were coming to a head. Lincoln’s political party was a sectional party, he was not even on the ballot in 10 States.

MYTH#4: Secession Was Un-Constitutional

With the ascendancy of the Republican Party inevitable, the compromising, protective tariff-loving Kentucky Senator Henry Clay (no real friend of the Old South) yet had this to say, “When they get control of the Federal Government…the Southern States must elect between independence out of the Union or subordination within it. The principles of that party are not only hostile to the constitutional rights of those States, but to their political integrity and social organisation. They are not only unconstitutional and sectional, but radical and revolutionary.”

An editorial in the Charleston Mercury, printed 2 days before the election of Lincoln in November of 1860, stated: “The real causes for the dissatisfaction in the South with the North, are in the unjust taxation and expenditure of the taxes by the government of the United States, and in the revolution the North has effected in this government, from a confederated republic, to a national sectional despotism.”

The original thirteen States met in convention to form a compact, a federal government (federal from the Latin, fœdus, meaning “league” or “confederation”). Why could they not meet in convention to withdraw, particularly if their rights were threatened?

There was a famous man, who in 1847, stood on the floor of Congress and spoke these words: “Any people, anywhere, being inclined and having the power, have the right to rise up and shake off the existing government, and form a new one that suits them better. This is a most valuable, a most sacred right, a right which we hope and believe is to liberate the world.” Who was this eloquent speaker? His name was Abraham Lincoln…busted!

Remember our own Declaration of Independence from England – “Whenever any form of government becomes destructive to these ends, it is the right of the people to abolish it, and to institute a new government.”

In 1803, New England threatened to secede from the Union due to their disagreement over the Louisiana Purchase. Senator Pickering of Massachusetts wrote: “I rather anticipate a new Confederacy exempt from the corrupt influence of the aristocratic Democrats of the South…There will be a separation…The British provinces (of Canada), even with the consent of Great Britain, will become members of the Northern Confederacy.” It seems sad they didn’t follow through, action of this sort would have saved much grief.

In 1814, five New England States (Mass, RI, NH, Vermont, Connecticut) held its famous “Hartford Convention” – there they displayed a flag with five stripes, and “…secession was threatened in the loudest terms…” (James Spence). This was over Madison’s war policy. They published an address which reads in part, “If the Union be destined to dissolution…it should, if possible, be the work of peaceable times and deliberate consent…Whenever it shall appear that the causes are radical and permanent, a separation by equitable arrangement will be preferable to an alliance by constraint among nominal friends, but real enemies.” In 1845 John Quincy Adams and New Englanders openly urged withdrawal from the Union because of the admission of Texas.

Was secession Constitutional? The New Englanders of old thought so, and threatened it often. Old Abe thought so in 1847, but seemed to have a lapse of memory in 1861. Further, Some states ratifying the Constitution reserved the right of secession. Virginia was the most clear of the Original Thirteen: “should the powers granted to the Union be perverted to the injury or oppression of the Sovereign State...” [then they reserved right to secede]. Same proviso was insisted upon by other states.

Then there was “Rawle’s View of the Constitution” which was a textbook at West-Point that all the military leaders, both North and South, were taught from as they attended the Military School. It argued that secession was Constitutional. Horace Greely wrote in the New York Tribune, “If the Declaration of Independence justified the secession of 3,000,000 colonists in 1776, I do not see why the Constitution ratified by the same men should not justify the secession of 5,000,000 of the Southerners from the Federal Union in 1861.”

The New York Herald of 11 November 1860 had this to say: “The South has an undeniable right to secede from the Union. In the event of secession, the City of New York, and the State of New Jersey, and very likely Connecticut will separate from New England when the black man is put on a pinnacle above the white.” Keep in mind this is a New York newspaper!

Secession was a Constitutional right understood by most intelligent men. President Davis, held a prisoner under ignominious conditions after the War, was never tried for treason. Why? Because, had this gone through the court system at that time, he would have been acquitted.

And so, eleven Southern states lawfully seceded from the Union and started another Nation, with the consent of the people, and formed their own Constitution and democratically elected their own representatives. And by the way, the CSA Constitution was almost a word for word copy of the US. Though the alterations were few, they were remarkable. At our meeting next month we are going to talk about State Rights and the Confederate Constitution. Be sure to attend.

Buchanan was president when the first seven States seceded (including Mississippi). In his view, he believed the Constitution did not permit secession. However, he insisted: neither did it empower the Federal government to keep a state in the Union by armed force. Even if it did, he said, a Union kept together with bayonets would be worse than none at all. The State of Maryland felt the bayonet. That State would most likely have seceded if Lincoln had not called out the troops and had the Legislators arrested and thrown into prison, along with the Mayor of Baltimore and numerous other citizens.

Is it proper to call the war the “Civil War”? No, England had a civil war, but our was not. Ours was a war between two Constitutionally separate nations! However, there was a civil war in the North. Many people rebelled against Lincoln’s tyrannical government and troops were called out to fire on Northerners. There was a big uprising in New York City.

While many Northerners favored letting the South go in peace, the Industrialists saw secession as a deadly threat. As Ludwell Johnson points out, “The withdrawal of Southerners from Congress had allowed the Republicans to raise the tariff in March. Duties on goods entering the United States were now higher than on those imported by the Confederacy.” Remember this is after secession, when the Southern States were no longer in the US Congress. So the legislature passes these tariffs without Southern resistance. What did that mean? The North now had high tariffs and the South had low tariffs.

Continuing Johnson, [these Northern] “Manufacturers faced the loss of their Southern market to cheap foreign goods. Merchants who enjoyed a lucrative position as middleman between the South and the rest of the world feared the deflection of trans-Atlantic commerce to the low-tariff Confederacy. Southern dreams of direct trade with Europe were on the verge of realisation; Confederate independence had already ended the North’s time-honored monopoly of coastwide shipping….” and the list just continues on and on. You see, these things were immediately happening after secession. The Northern industrialists were outraged. They said we can’t allow this to happen. They knew they must have the Southern States under the tariff, otherwise it would ruin them. President Buchanan wasn’t going to do anything, but soon Abraham Lincoln would be inaugurated and he understood very clearly the predicament and what had to be done to protect the wealth of the North.

So our myth, “Secession was unconstitutional” is busted. Intelligent men knew that secession was lawful, but they also knew that the exodus of the South meant the exodus of wealth. The love of money is the root of all evil.

MYTH #5: The North had no Choice but to go to War

This is not true. There were several attempts made to avert war on the part of the South. First of all, in February 1861, after the first seven States had seceded, Virginia (who had not yet seceded) called the “Peace Conference.” The very next month the Confederate States government sent a commission in an attempt to arrange a peaceful settlement of the problems arising from secession and settle the issues peaceably. The US government disdained their presence. Why? These men came to Washington as ambassadors of peace and were held in utter contempt. Why?

US President Abraham Lincoln succinctly answers that question for us in his interview with Colonel Baldwin of Virginia. During their intercourse, Lincoln said he was fully aware that neither Constitution nor laws gave them (the US) any right to coerce a State to remain in the Union. I encourage you to read the story of Colonel Baldwin’s interview with Lincoln. It is found in Robert Lewis Dabney’s “Discussions Volume 4” (pages 87-100). There you will find in Lincoln’s own words…the true cause of the war. His concern was – “What is to become of my tariffs”? – It was a matter of Revenue. It was not to abolish the institution of slavery, as we shall see more clearly in just a moment. It was not really to preserve the Union, it was to change the Union. The radical Republican wanted the destruction of the old Union and a new one erected upon its ashes, and they were very vocal about their intentions. So in answer, the North could have avoided war but it was not in their plans.

Listen to the words of an impartial observer, the famous English novelist, Charles Dickens, “The Northern onslaught upon slavery was no more than a piece of specious humbug designed to conceal its desire for economic control of the Southern States…Union means so many millions a year lost to the South; secession means the loss of the same millions to the North. The love of money is the root of this as of many many other evils.”

Part 2 is now online here – Be Sure to read it cos it’s even better than Part 1!