Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 25.djvu/79

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he nnYivd the Confederate States no terms at all but laying down our arm* and trusting entirety to hi-. rlrmriirv and that of the United States. Mr. Anderson and I both said that we could only reach tlx>M trrms in any event, and we saw nothing to be accomplished by anticipating them. Mr. Stephens did not dissent from our expres- rions.

" I was told that Mr. Stephens had previous to this conversation, said ' we now only need stout hearts and strong arms. ' I did not lu-ar him say this; it was told me at breakfast on Sunday morning, February 5, 1865. My diary does not show who told me. I think it also came from Senator Orr.


"Some time after the war, between 1866 and 1870, a somewhat heated controversy arose between two gentlemen in St. Augustine county, where I then lived, as to the paragraphs above quoted from Colonel Watterson's address. One of them averred in the most unqualified terms that the administration and Congress of the Con- federate States were alone to blame for the loss of the negroes as slaves, because Mr. Lincoln offered $400,000,000 for them at the Monroe Conference, and his offer was flatly refused. The other as warmly contradicted this averment. The latter was my lifelong friend, Colonel S. W. Blount, one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence of Texas, deceased only a few years since. He appealed to me for information as to fact. I told him that the state- ment made by his adversary was completely untrue. But the other gentleman insisted that I was mistaken. Colonel Blount, who in his boyhood had been a schoolmate of Mr. Stephens, wrote to him on the subject. Mr. Stephens promptly replied that it was not true that Mr. Lincoln had ever offered to pay any sum for the negroes of the South, and added: ' I think (as I now state from memory) that the only element of truth in the reference to the slaves of the South was so much mixed up and infused with falsehood as to make the entire assertion false.' Colonel Blount showed me Mr. Stephen's letter, and it was published at his request, in the Texas Republican, at Marshall, and several other Texas newspapers.

"Colonel Blount's adversary, still not satisfied with the denial of Mr. Stephens, addressed a letter to Hon. John H. Reagan, stating that he (Reagan) being a member of President Davis's Cabinet, must know all about the facts, and telling him that it was his duty to