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organs of consistent and wholesome plans, digested by common councils, and modified by mutual interest.
“ However combinations or associations of the above description may now and then answer popular ends, they are likely, in the course of time and things, to become potent engines by which cunning, ambitious, and unprincipled men will be enabled to subvert the power of the people, and to usurp for themselves the reins of Government, destroying afterwards the very engines which had lifted them to unjust dominion.”
We feel that the best course to be pursued in this fatal controversy is to lay the arguments side by side for the opinion of any who may be left to hear the voice of reason amongst the passion and turmoil of civil strife. What is the actual state of things may be best seen by the following proclamation issued by Governor Jackson, explaining the relative position of the State and Federal Governments:
“ Jefferson City, June 12, 1861. “ To the People of Missouri:
“ A series of unprovoked and unparalleled outrages have been inflicted on the peace and dignity of this commonwealth, and upon the rights and liberties of its people, by wicked and unprincipled men, professing to act under the authority of the United States Government; the solemn enactments of your legislature have been nullified; your volunteer soldiers have been taken prisoners; your commerce with your sister States has been suspended; your trade with your own fellow-citizens has been and is subjected to increasing control of an armed soldiery ; peaceful citizens have been imprisoned without warrant or law; unoffending and defenceless men, women, and children have been ruthlessly shot down and murdered, and other unbearable indignities have been heaped upon your State and yourselves. To all these outrages and indignities you have submitted with patriotic forbearance, which has only encouraged the perpetrators of these grievous wrongs to attempt still bolder and more daring usurpations.
“ It has been my earnest endeavour, under all these embarrassing circumstances, to maintain the peace of the State, and avert, if possible, from our borders the desolating effects of civil war. With that object in view, I authorised Major-General Price, several weeks ago, to arrange with General Harney, commanding the Federal troops in this State, the terms of an agreement by which the
peace of the State might be preserved. They came, on the 21st of May, to an understanding which was made public. The State authorities have laboured faithfully to carry out the terms of that agreement. The Federal Government, on the other hand, not only manifested its strong disapprobation of it by the instant dismissal of that distinguished officer, who, on its part, entered into it, but it at once began and has unintermittingly carried out a system of hostile operation, in utter contempt of that agreement, and in reckless disregard of its own pledged faith. The acts have latterly portended revolution and civil war so unmistakeably that I resolved to make one further effort to avert these dangers from you.
“I therefore solicited an interview with Brigadier-General Lyon, commanding the Federal army in Missouri. It was granted on the 11th instant, and, waving all questions of personal and official dignity, I went to St. Louis, accompanied by Major-General Price. We had an interview on the 11th instant with General Lyon and Colonel F. P. Blair, jun., at which I submitted to them these propositions: -- " That I would disband the State guard and break up its organisation ; that I would disarm all the companies which had been ordered out by the State ; that I would pledge myself not to organise the militia under the military bill; that no arms or munitions of war should be brought into the State; that I would protect all citizens equally in all their rights, regardless of their political opinions; that I would repress all insurrectionary movements within the State; that I would repel all attempts made to invade it from whatever quarter, and by whomsoever made, and that I would thus maintain a strict neutrality in the present unhappy contest, and preserve the peace of the State; and I further proposed that I would, if necessary, invoke the assistance of the United States troops to carry out those pledges. All this I proposed to do upon condition that the Federal Government would undertake to disarm the home guard, which it has illegally organised and armed throughout the State, and pledged itself not occupy with its troops any localities in the State not occupied by them at this time. Nothing but the most earnest desire to avert. the horrors of civil war from our beloved State could have tempted me to propose these humiliating terms. They were rejected by the Federal officers. They demanded not only the disorganisation and disarming of the State militia and the nullification of the military bill, but they refused to disarm their own home guard, and insisted that the Federal
Government should enjoy the unrestricted right to move and station its troops throughout the State whenever and wherever that might, in the opinion of its officers, be necessary, either for the protection of loyal subjects of the Federal Government, or for repelling invasion; and they plainly announced that it was the intention of the administration to take military occupation, under these pretexts, of the whole State, and reduce it, as avowed by General Lyon himself, to the exact condition of Maryland.
“ The acceptance by me of those degrading terms would not only have sullied the honour of Missouri, but would have aroused the indignation of every brave citizen, and precipitated the very conflict which it has been my aim to prevent. We refused to accede to them, and the conference was broken up.
“ Fellow-citizens, all our efforts towards concession have failed. We can hope nothing from the justice or moderation of the agents of the Federal Government in this State. They are energetically hastening the execution of their bloody and revolutionary schemes for the inauguration of civil war in your midst; for the military occupation of your State by so many bands of lawless invaders; for