which is eternal war. The United States does and must assert
its authority wherever it has power ; if it relaxes one bit to pres¬
sure it is gone, and I know that such is not the national feeling.
This feeling assumes various shapes, but always comes back to
that of Union. Once admit the Union, once more acknowledge
the authority of the national government, and instead of devot¬
ing your houses and streets and roads to the dread uses of war,
I, and this army, become at once your protectors and supporters,
shielding you from danger, let it come from what quarter it may.
I know that a few individuals cannot resist a torrent of error
and passion such as has swept the South into rebellion ; but you
can point out, so that we may know those who desire a govern¬
ment and those who insist on war and its desolation.
" You might as well appeal against the thunder-storm as
against these terrible hardships of war. They are inevitable,
and the only way the people of Atlanta can hope once more to
live in peace and quiet at home is to stop this war, which can
alone be done by admitting that it began in error and is per¬
petuated in pride. We don't want your negroes or your horses,
or your houses, or your land, or anything you have, but wre do
want and will have a just obedience to the laws of the "United
States. That we will have, and if it involves the destruction of
your improvements, we cannot help it. You have heretofore
read public sentiment in your newspapers, that live by falsehood
and excitement, and the quicker you seek for truth in other
quarters the better for you.
" I repeat, then, that by the original compact of government,
the United States had certain rights in Georgia which have
never been relinquished, and never will be ; that the South be¬
gan war by seizing forts, arsenals, mints, custom-houses, &c, &c.
long before Mr. Lincoln was installed, and before the South
had one jot or tittle of provocation. I myself have seen in Mis¬
souri, Kentucky, Tennesse and Mississippi, hundreds and thou¬
sands of women and childern fleeing from your armies and des¬
peradoes, hungry and with bleeding feet. In Memphis, Vicks¬
burg and Mississippi we fed thousands upon thousands of the
families of rebel soldiers left on our hands, and whom we could
not see starve. Now that war comes home to you, you feel very
different—you deprecate its horrors, but did not feel them when
you sent car-loads of soldiers and ammunition, and moulded
shell and shot to carry war into Kentucky and Tennessee, and
desolate the homes of hundreds and thousands of good people,
who only asked to live in peace at their old homes, and under
the government of their inheritance. But these comparisons are
idle. I want peace, and believe it can only be reached through
Union and war, and I will ever conduct war purely with a view
to perfect and early success.
" But. mv dp*"* RirR-Jsgh.eiL.that neace does come, you may call