Virginia Memory, Library of Virginia

Union or Secession
  • "I am a Southern Rights man"
  • "I am a Southern Rights man"
  • "I am a Southern Rights man"
In a letter dated November 13, 1860, from Senatobia, Mississippi, Callie Anthony's cousin discussed family news and informed her of his secessionist leanings.
« Return to July 1860 to January 1861
My Dear Callie

"I am a Southern Rights man"

Unidentified cousin to Callie Anthony, November 13, 1860 [some pages are missing from end of letter], Anthony Family Papers, 1785–1952, Acc. 35647, 35648, Library of Virginia.

Callie Anthony says: My cousin in Senatobia, Mississippi, wrote me this letter. He answered a bunch of my questions about some of our cousins who live there. Though it sounds like they've been kind of poorly, it is always nice to keep up with everyone's doings.

Abraham Lincoln won the presidential election just last week, and my cousin was already up in arms and ready for Mississippi to secede. He says that he lost his trust in the Union during the campaigning. In fact he doesn't consider himself a Democrat any longer. I'm pretty sure he is itching to fight a war. Oh, I hope it doesn't come to that!

Unidentified cousin to Callie Anthony, November 13, 1860 [some pages are missing from end of letter], Anthony Family Papers, 1785–1952, Acc. 35647, 35648, Library of Virginia.

Senatobia Missi Nov 13th 1860
Miss Callie J Anthony
Dear Cousin Callie
Your long anticipated yet welcome favor of the 31st Inst, is just to hand and with equal precipitancy as you evinced tardiness, I now will attempt to write you and like yourself would apologize for so hastily obtruding its contents upon you, else it should find you so busily engaged that you might not find the time to over-look its meanderings &c. However, I would not write to night had I any conception of a weeks time but this I have not & knowing that some days will elapse after tomorrow before I can be at the Desk, it might place me categorically a procrastinationist whict does not do with me, especially in letter writing.
I was truly glad to hear from you & the family but sorry that uncles leg is stil (again) a part the cause of his suffering, I wish I was there to cure it for him if it can be done but time, space and occupation almost preclude even the wish, to be advantageous to the absent friends, but this accumulation species of anxiety for friends is soon learned to be or rather treated as a species of phantasmagora the equivalent of sympathy and forced to vanish by the objective circumstances surrounding us.
Had I been at all at leisure, I would have attended the Lbg fair myself; there was some stock on the ground I very "much liked to see" but duty forbade the pleasure and the anxiety vanished in lieu of pleasure much nearer home.
In answer the query of Mr. G & family: would say they are here and judge will remain in as much as the effort they made to move was futile. So much so that they only went 3 miles. What they will do I am at a loss to say, since I have only seen them 2ce in 2 months and then only a moment. I advised Cos A against a mushroom prospect of J.T.G & Co of entering the Tobacco business, since which time I have not been long enough with any of the family to learn their anticipations; only that they are uncomfortable situated; Sallie has a little school, not much pay in it—Susan anticipates taking the school she had near Looxahoma, after Ch.mas & I have no idea what Miss Nancy will do—She is at this time with Papa's family—I tried to assist them on several occasions but Bill being the proper man to consummate the business, let it fall though without an effort & I henceforth become neutral unless from necessity.
I am much afraid that they will not do well. John is a little more "Wish a Washy" than he used to be. Consequently can be of little material service to any one, besides wants to take to himself a wife to assist in the dessolation making the aphorism of "Misery loves company" too true. I rekon W.W.G. will "Go to the Depot" Cousin Ann with him & the girls get schools about if there be need of any.
Phil gained one of his suits over the life—it was dismissed to his cost & several others will go in the same road during the sitting of the present term of Court if they are reached before the close of the session of Court—I think he is a confirmed monomaniac upon the object (not subject) of money & soon he will go to the dogs, if he does not accept his mothers propositions this I believe finishes the notice of your letter except on Politics—I cant say what position I occupied in this sphere during the Canvas, only I feel from the great Union proclivities which pervaded my Whole System to the most Ultra States Rights man possible I almost detest the name of Union since it dissolves that principle of Equality, so ably & distinctly set forth in the Declaration of Rights & the federal Compact made and entered into by the wise and Holy fore Fathers of this once glorious Republic Rendered almost despicable by the leaders of Parties, in order to secure to themselves the greatest share in public plunder &c. I am a Southern rights man, I claim that we have been trampled upon long enough & that if ever I cast another vote it will be to secede from any people who openly declare an Irriparable conflict to exist in those privileges, principles, & Rights as delegated to us by the original Compact made and Entered into by the Citizens of this Republic. I am no longer a Democrat in its geographical since—but such a patriot as Emmet H. without the native intellect to govern it yet not a fanatic! I want justice meted to every section & if the equipoise ceases then the principles which cause the differences should be the great object of Every Man Every patriot who loves his Country & his God. Excuse me for this digression. I would like to say more but I forgot I was talking to a lady. I greatly fear we are on the eve of a convulsion in affairs and I cant say I regret it but on the Ladies & Childrens account, yet it must come & the sooner the better. I have none of either of my own to protect, but there is none more willing than your better cousin to stand by our own as long as life lasts
[remainder of letter is missing]