Declarations of Causes of Seceding States
Civil War Mississippi


A Declaration of the Immediate Causes which Induce and Justify the Secession of the State of Mississippi from the Federal Union.


In the momentous step which our State has taken of dissolving its connection with the government of which we so long formed a part, it is but just that we should declare the prominent reasons which have induced our course.

Our position is thoroughly identified with the institution of slavery-- the greatest material interest of the world. Its labor supplies the product which constitutes by far the largest and most important portions of commerce of the earth. These products are peculiar to the climate verging on the tropical regions, and by an imperious law of nature, none but the black race can bear exposure to the tropical sun. These products have become necessities of the world, and a blow at slavery is a blow at commerce and civilization. That blow has been long aimed at the institution, and was at the point of reaching its consummation. There was no choice left us but submission to the mandates of abolition, or a dissolution of the Union, whose principles had been subverted to work out our ruin.

That we do not overstate the dangers to our institution, a reference to a few facts will sufficiently prove.

The hostility to this institution commenced before the adoption of the Constitution, and was manifested in the well-known Ordinance of 1787, in regard to the Northwestern Territory.

The feeling increased, until, in 1819-20, it deprived the South of more than half the vast territory acquired from France.

The same hostility dismembered Texas and seized upon all the territory acquired from Mexico.

It has grown until it denies the right of property in slaves, and refuses protection to that right on the high seas, in the Territories, and wherever the government of the United States had jurisdiction.

It refuses the admission of new slave States into the Union, and seeks to extinguish it by confining it within its present limits, denying the power of expansion.

It tramples the original equality of the South under foot.

It has nullified the Fugitive Slave Law in almost every free State in the Union, and has utterly broken the compact which our fathers pledged their faith to maintain.

It advocates negro equality, socially and politically, and promotes insurrection and incendiarism in our midst.

It has enlisted its press, its pulpit and its schools against us, until the whole popular mind of the North is excited and inflamed with prejudice.

It has made combinations and formed associations to carry out its schemes of emancipation in the States and wherever else slavery exists.

It seeks not to elevate or to support the slave, but to destroy his present condition without providing a better.

It has invaded a State, and invested with the honors of martyrdom the wretch whose purpose was to apply flames to our dwellings, and the weapons of destruction to our lives.

It has broken every compact into which it has entered for our security.

It has given indubitable evidence of its design to ruin our agriculture, to prostrate our industrial pursuits and to destroy our social system.

It knows no relenting or hesitation in its purposes; it stops not in its march of aggression, and leaves us no room to hope for cessation or for pause.

It has recently obtained control of the Government, by the prosecution of its unhallowed schemes, and destroyed the last expectation of living together in friendship and brotherhood.

Utter subjugation awaits us in the Union, if we should consent longer to remain in it. It is not a matter of choice, but of necessity. We must either submit to degradation, and to the loss of property worth four billions of money, or we must secede from the Union framed by our fathers, to secure this as well as every other species of property. For far less cause than this, our fathers separated from the Crown of England.

Our decision is made. We follow their footsteps. We embrace the alternative of separation; and for the reasons here stated, we resolve to maintain our rights with the full consciousness of the justice of our course, and the undoubting belief of our ability to maintain it.

Sources:
Library of Congress
"Journal of the State Convention", (Jackson, MS: E. Barksdale, State Printer, 1861), pp. 86-88

 

American Civil War Exhibits
Civil War Timeline
Documents of the Civil War
Civil War Picture Album
Book Title Top Civil War Picks
Young Reader Book Selections

Cavaliers in Dixie
Kentucky Cavaliers in Dixie
Reminiscences of a Confederate Cavalryman

Mosgrove was born in Kentucky, in 1844, and enlisted in the Fourth Kentucky Cavalry Regiment on September 10, 1862. His eyewitness account illuminates the western theater of the Civil War in Kentucky, east Tennessee, and southwest Virginia
Kindle Available

Patriotic Treason
John Brown and the Soul of America

The life of the first citizen committed to absolute racial equality. His friendships in defiance of the culture around him, He turned his twenty children into a dedicated militia. He collaborated with black leaders such as Frederick Douglass, Martin Delany, and Harriet Tubman to overthrow slavery.

The Camden Expedition of 1864 and the Opportunity Lost by the Confederacy to Change the Civil War
The Confederacy had a great opportunity to turn the Civil War in its favor in 1864, but squandered this chance when it failed to finish off a Union army cornered in Louisiana because of concerns about another Union army coming south from Arkansas. The Confederates were so confused that they could not agree on a course of action to contend with both threats, thus the Union offensive advancing from Arkansas saved the one in Louisiana and became known to history as the Camden Expedition.

A Stranger And a Sojourner: Peter Caulder, Free Black Frontiersman in Antebellum Arkansas
An illiterate free black man, defied all generalizations about race as he served with distinction as a marksman in the U.S. Army during the War of 1812, repeatedly crossed the color line, and became an Arkansas yeoman farmer, thriving and respected by white neighbors until he fell victim of new discriminatory legislation on the eve of the Civil War


Search
AmericanCivilWar.com
 
Enter the keywords you are looking for and the site will be searched and all occurances of your request will be displayed. You can also enter a date format, April 19,1862 or September 1864.

Share
Popular Pages