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to the plow; they must go forward. To recede would be worse than ignominy. Better meet war in its deadliest shape than cringe before an enemy whose wrath we have invoked. I make no pretensions as to myself. I have yielded up office and sought retirement to preserve peace among our people. My services, perhaps, are not important enough to be desired. Others are perhaps more competent to lead the people through this revolution. I have been with them through the fiery ordeal once, and I know that with prudence and discipline their courage will surmount all obstacles. Should the tocsin of war, calling forth the people to resist the invader, reach the retirement to which I shall go, will heed neither the denunciations of my enemies, nor the charms of my own fireside, but will join the ranks of my countrymen to defend Texas once again. Then I will ask those who have pursued me with malignity, and who have denounced me as a traitor to Texas and the South, to prove themselves more true, when the battle shock shall come. Old and worn as I am, I shall not be laggard. Though others may lead, I shall not scorn to follow; and though I may end life in the ranks, where I commenced it, I shall feel that the post of duty is the post of honor.
We have entered upon a conflict which will
demand all the energies of the people. Not only must they be united, but all the heroic virtues which characterize a free people must be brought into requisition. There must be that sacrificing spirit of patriotism which will yield the private desires for the public good. There must be that fortitude which will anticipate occasional reverses as the natural consequences of war, and meet them with becoming pride and resignation; but, above all, there must be discipline and subordination to law and order. Without this, armies will be raised in vain, and carnage will be wasted in hopeless enterprises. The South, chivalric, brave, and impetuous as it is, must add to these attributes of success thorough discipline, or disaster will come upon the country. The Northern people by their nature and occupation are subordinate to orders. They are capable of great endurance and a high state of discipline. A good motto for a soldier is, Never underrate the strength of your enemy. The South claims superiority over them in point of fearless courage. Equal them in point of discipline, and there will be no danger. Organize your forces; yield obedience to orders from headquarters. Do not waste your energies in unauthorized expeditions; but in all things conform to law and order, and it will be ten times better than running hither and thither, spend
ing money and time, without accomplishing any of the plans of a campaign which your leaders have marked out. Once organized, stay organized.
Do not be making companies to-day and unmaking them to-morrow. If you are dissatisfied with your captain, wait until the battle day comes, and he gets killed off, then you can get another. It is better to fight up to him and get rid of him in that way than to split off, and make a new company to be split up in the same way. I give this advice as an old soldier. I know the value of subordination and discipline. A good citizen, who has been obedient to law and civil authority, always makes a good soldier. I have ever been conservative, was conservative as long as the Union lasted—am a conservative citizen of the Southern Confederacy, and giving to the constituted authorities of the country, civil and military, and the Government which a majority of the people have approved and acquiesced in, an honest obedience, I feel that I should do less than my duty did I not press upon others the importance of regarding this the first duty of a good citizen.
SPEECH OF HOWELL COBB,
AT ATLANTA, GEORGIA, MAY 22.
FELLOW-CITIZENS: I feel that I cannot compensate you for the trouble you have taken to call me out. You, as citizens of Atlanta, know that there has been no instance of my being called upon by you, in which I failed to respond, unless for the very good reason that I had nothing to say; and this evening I must offer this excuse for failing to address you at length. I presume that a curiosity to know what we have been doing in the Congress recently assembled at Montgomery, has induced you to make this call upon me.
We have made all the necessary arrangements to meet the present crisis. Last night we adjourned to meet in Richmond on the 20th of July. I will tell you why we did this. The "Old Dominion," as you know, has at last shaken off the bonds of Lincoln, and joined her noble Southern sisters. Her
soil is to be the battle ground, and her streams are to be dyed with Southern blood. We felt that her cause was our cause, and that if she fell we wanted to die with her. (Cheers.) We have sent our soldiers on to the posts of danger, and we wanted to be there to aid and counsel our brave "boys." In the progress of the war, further legislation may be necessary, and we will be there, that when the hour of danger comes, we may lay aside the robes of legislation, buckle on the armor of the soldier, and do battle beside the brave ones who have volunteered for the defence of our beloved South. (Loud cheers.)
The people are coming up gallantly to the work. When the call was made for twelve months' volunteers, thousands were offered; but when it was changed to the full term of the war, the numbers increased! The anxiety among our citizens is not as to who shall go to the wars, but who shall stay at home? No man in the whole Confederate Statesthe gray haired sire down to the beardless youth—in whose veins was one drop of Southern blood, feared to plant his foot upon Virginia's soil, and die fighting for our rights.
In Congress, the other day, I told them that if no other arm was raised to defend Virginia, noble old Georgia-proud in her love of independence-would