“They had made up their minds that under a given contingency they would secede from the Union and thus dismember the Republic. That contingency had happened, and they should execute their threat. Mr. Ireson of Georgia, expressed the ruling sentiment of his section when he told the northern peacemakers that if the people of the South were given a blank sheet of paper upon which to write their own terms on which they would remain in the Union, they would not stay. They had come to hate everything which had the prefix “Free”—free soil, free states, free territories, free schools, free speech, and freedom generally, and they would have no more such prefixes.”
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