Page:Confederate Military History - 1899 - Volume 7.djvu/487

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be deemed necessary. The threatened invasion of Mississippi soil, the assailment of their right of property and its possible ultimate destruction, caused Whig and Democrat to stand shoulder to shoulder and hand to hand in support of a common cause. The report of the auditor of public accounts of Mississippi for the year 1860, shows that there were 60,001 free white polls between 21 and 50 years of age in the State, and 415,689 slaves under 60 years of age. In a memorial of the legislature to the Provisional Congress of the Confederate States, adopted July 29, 1861, it is stated that fully one-fifth of the entire cotton crop, averaging $40 per bale, was gathered from the soil of Mississippi, and that at the time of separation the people were in a prosperous condition.

The Democratic party of the State, representing "an overwhelming majority of the people," says Governor McWillie in his message to the legislature, November, 1859, had "adopted the following resolutions:"

"Resolved, That in the event of the election of a Black Republican candidate to the Presidency by the suffrages of one portion of the Union only, to rule over the whole United States upon the avowed purpose of that organization, Mississippi will regard it as a declaration of hostility, and will hold herself in readiness to co-operate with her sister States of the South in whatever measures they may deem necessary for the maintenance of their rights as co-equal members of the confederacy."

Official returns of the vote for governor of the State of Mississippi, at an election held on the first Monday of October, 1859, as opened and counted by a joint convention of the two houses of the legislature on Thursday, the 10th day of November, 1859, show that the total vote cast was 44,882. Of this number, John J. Pettus received 34.559; H. W. Walter, 10,306; scattering 15. Pettus' Majority, 24,253.

Mr. Lincoln and Mr. Hamlin having been elected, Governor Pettus convened the legislature in extraordinary session, saying in his message that he had assembled them