We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights; that amongst these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness; that to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed; that whenever any form of government becomes destructive to these ends, it is the right of the people to alter, or abolish it.
- Declaration of Independence (emphasis added)
His Britannic Majesty acknowledges the said United States, viz., New Hampshire, Massachusetts Bay, Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia, to be free sovereign and independent states, that he treats with them as such, and for himself, his heirs, and successors, relinquishes all claims to the government, propriety, and territorial rights of the same and every part thereof.
-Article One, Paris Peace Treaty (emphasis added)
A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.
- Second Amendment
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.
- Tenth Amendment
A Union of the States containing such an ingredient seemed to provide for its own destruction. The use of force against a State, would look more like a declaration of war, than an infliction of punishment, and would probably be considered by the party attacked as a dissolution of all previous compacts by which it might be bound.
When the sword is once drawn the passions of men observe no bounds of moderation. The suggestions of wounded pride, the instigations of resentment, would be apt to carry the States against which the arms of the Union were exerted, to any extreme to avenge the affront, or to avoid the disgrace of submission. The first war of this kind would probably terminate in a dissolution of the Union.
To coerce a State would be one of the maddest projects ever devised. No State would ever suffer itself to be used as the instrument of coercing another
The question fairly stated is, Has the Constitution delegated to Congress the power to coerce a State into submission which is attempting to withdraw or has actually withdrawn from the Confederacy? If answered in the affirmative, it must be on the principle that the power has been conferred upon Congress to declare and to make war against a State. After much serious reflection I have arrived at the conclusion that no such power has been delegated to Congress or to any other department of the Federal Government. It is manifest upon an inspection of the Constitution that this is not among the specific and enumerated powers granted to Congress, and it is equally apparent that its exercise is not necessary and proper for carrying into execution any one of these powers. So far from this power having been delegated to Congress, it was expressly refused by the Convention which framed the Constitution.
AN ORDINANCE to dissolve the union between the State of South Carolina and other States united with her under the compact entitled "The Constitution of the United States of America."
We, the people of the State of South Carolina, in convention assembled, do declare and ordain, and it is hereby declared and ordained, That the ordinance adopted by us in convention on the twenty-third day of May, in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and eighty-eight, whereby the Constitution of the United States of America was ratified, and also all acts and parts of acts of the General Assembly of this State ratifying amendments of the said Constitution, are hereby repealed; and that the union now subsisting between South Carolina and other States, under the name of the "United States of America," is hereby dissolved.
Done at Charleston the twentieth day of December, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty.
Ordinances of Secession
The people of the State of South Carolina, in Convention assembled, on the 26th day of April, A.D., 1852, declared that the frequent violations of the Constitution of the United States, by the Federal Government, and its encroachments upon the reserved rights of the States, fully justified this State in then withdrawing from the Federal Union; but in deference to the opinions and wishes of the other slaveholding States, she forbore at that time to exercise this right. Since that time, these encroachments have continued to increase, and further forbearance ceases to be a virtue.
And now the State of South Carolina having resumed her separate and equal place among nations, deems it due to herself, to the remaining United States of America, and to the nations of the world, that she should declare the immediate causes which have led to this act…
Declarations of Causes of Seceding States
Resignation of the South Carolina Delegation
The Speaker laid before the House on the 24th, a letter signed by Messrs. M'Queen, Bonham, Boyce, and Ashmore, of South Carolina, as follows:
SIR,- We avail ourselves of the earliest opportunity since the official communication of the intelligence, of making known to your honorable body that the people of the State of South Carolina, in their sovereign capacity, have resumed the powers heretofore delegated by them to the Federal Government of the United States, and have thereby dissolved our connection with the House of Representatives. In taking leave of those with whom we have been associated in a common agency, we, as well as the people of our Commonwealth, desire to do so with a feeling of mutual regard and respect for each other- cherishing the hope that, in our future relations, we may better enjoy that peace and harmony essential to the happiness of a free and enlightened people.
M. L. BONHAM,
W. W. BOYCE,
J. D. ASHMORE.
To the Speaker of the House of Representatives.
Harper’s Weekly (January 5, 1861)
BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES
Whereas the laws of the United States have been for some time past, and now are opposed, and the execution thereof obstructed, in the States of South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Florida, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas, by combinations too powerful to be suppressed by the ordinary course of judicial proceedings, or by the powers vested in the Marshals by law,
Now therefore, I, Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States, in virtue of the power in me vested by the Constitution, and the laws, have thought fit to call forth, and hereby do call forth, the militia of the several States of the Union, to the aggregate number of seventy-five thousand, in order to suppress said combinations, and to cause the laws to be duly executed. The details, for this object, will be immediately communicated to the State authorities through the War Department.
I appeal to all loyal citizens to favor, facilitate and aid this effort to maintain the honor, the integrity, and the existence of our National Union, and the perpetuity of popular government; and to redress wrongs already long enough endured.
I deem it proper to say that the first service assigned to the forces hereby called forth will probably be to re-possess the forts, places, and property which have been seized from the Union; and in every event, the utmost care will be observed, consistently with the objects aforesaid, to avoid any devastation, any destruction of, or interference with, property, or any disturbance of peaceful citizens in any part of the country.
And I hereby command the persons composing the combinations aforesaid to disperse, and retire peaceably to their respective abodes within twenty days from this date.
Deeming that the present condition of public affairs presents an extraordinary occasion, I do hereby, in virtue of the power in me vested by the Constitution, convene both Houses of Congress. Senators and Representatives are therefore summoned to assemble at their respective chambers, at 12 o'clock, noon, on Thursday, the fourth day of July, next, then and there to consider and determine, such measures, as, in their wisdom, the public safety, and interest may seem to demand.
In Witness Whereof I have hereunto set my hand, and caused the Seal of the United States to be affixed.
Done at the city of Washington this fifteenth day of April in the year of our Lord One thousand, Eight hundred and Sixtyone, and of the Independence the United States the Eightyfifth.
By the President:
WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.
The American Presidency Project
GENERAL ORDERS No. 100.
WAR DEPT., ADJT. GENERAL'S OFFICE,
Washington, April 24, 1863.
The following "Instructions for the Government of Armies of the United States in the Field," prepared by Francis Lieber, LL.D., and revised by a board of officers, of which Maj. Gen. E. A. Hitchcock is president, having been approved by the President of the United States, he commands that they be published for the information of all concerned.
By order of the Secretary of War:
E. D. TOWNSEND,
1. A place, district, or country occupied by an enemy stands, in consequence of the occupation, under the martial law of the invading or occupying army, whether any proclamation declaring martial law, or any public warning to the inhabitants, has been issued or not. Martial law is the immediate and direct effect and consequence of occupation or conquest.
The presence of a hostile army proclaims its martial law.
2. Martial law does not cease during the hostile occupation, except by special proclamation, ordered by the commander-in-chief, or by special mention in the treaty of peace concluding the war, when the occupation of a place or territory continues beyond the conclusion of peace as one of the conditions of the same.
3. Martial law in a hostile country consists in the suspension by the occupying military authority of the criminal and civil law, and of the domestic administration and government in the occupied place or territory, and in the substitution of military rule and force for the same, as well as in the dictation of general laws, as far as military necessity requires this suspension, substitution, or dictation.
The commander of the forces may proclaim that the administration of all civil and penal law shall continue either wholly or in part, as in times of peace, unless otherwise ordered by the military authority.
General Orders No. 100
At the close of the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia on September 18, 1787, a Mrs. Powel anxiously awaited the results, and as Benjamin Franklin emerged from the long task now finished, asked him directly:
"Well Doctor, what have we got, a republic or a monarchy?"
"A republic if you can keep it" responded Franklin.
And be it further enacted, That the commander of any district named in said act shall have power, subject to the disapproval of the General of the army of the United States, and to have effect till disapproved, whenever in the opinion of such commander the proper administration of said act shall require it, to suspend or remove from office, or from the performance of official duties and the exercise of official powers, any officer or person holding or exercising, or professing to hold or exercise, any civil or military office or duty in such district under any power, election, appointment or authority derived from, or granted by, or claimed under, any so-called State or the government thereof, or any municipal or other division thereof, and upon such suspension or removal such commander, subject to the disapproval of the General as aforesaid, shall have power to provide from time to time for the performance of the said duties of such officer or person so suspended or removed, by the detail of some competent officer or soldier of the army, or by the appointment of some other person, to perform the same, and to fill vacancies occasioned by death, resignation, or otherwise.
And be it further enacted, That the true intent and meaning of the oath prescribed in said supplementary act is, (among other things,) that no person who has been a member of the legislature of any State, or who has held any executive or judicial office in any State, whether he has taken an oath to support the Constitution of the United Sates or not, and whether he was holding such office at the commencement of the rebellion, or had held it before, and who has afterwards engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the United States, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof, is entitled to be registered or to vote; and the words "executive or judicial office in any State" in said oath mentioned shall be construed to include all civil offices created by law for the administration of any general law of a State, or for the administration of justice.
…and when said State, by a vote of its legislature elected under said constitution, shall have adopted the amendment to the Constitution of the United States, proposed by the Thirty-ninth Congress, and known as article fourteen, and when such article shall have become a part of the Constitution of the United States, said State shall be declared entitled to representation in Congress, and senators and representatives shall be admitted there from on their taking the oath prescribed by law…
-Reconstruction Acts(emphasis added)
(15) “United States” means—
(A) a Federal corporation;
(B) an agency, department, commission, board, or other entity of the United States; or
(C) an instrumentality of the United States.
TITLE 28 > PART VI > CHAPTER 176 > SUBCHAPTER A > § 3002
Army Regulation 840-10, 2.3(b) (1979) states:
b. National flags listed below are for indoor displays and for use in ceremonies and parades. For these purposes the United States flag will be rayon banner cloth, trimmed on three sides with golden yellow fringe, 2 1/2 inches wide.
Army Regulation 840-10, 2.3(c) states:
c. Authorization for indoor display. The flag of the United States is authorized for indoor display for:
(1) each office, headquarters, and organization authorized a positional color, distinguishing flag, or organizational color;
(2) each organization of battalion size or larger, temporary or permanent, not otherwise authorized a flag of the United States;
(3) each military installation not otherwise authorized an indoor flag of the United States, for the purpose of administering oaths of office;
(4) each military courtroom;
(5) each US Army element of joint commands, military groups, and missions. One flag is authorized for any one headquarters operating in a dual capacity;
(6) each subordinate element of the US Army Recruiting Command;
(7) each ROTC unit, including those at satellited schools;
(8) each reception station.
The Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union, also the Articles of Confederation, was the governing constitution of the alliance of thirteen independent and sovereign states styled "United States of America." The Article's ratification (proposed in 1777) was completed in 1781, legally uniting the states by compact into the "United States of America" as a union with a confederation government. Under the Articles (and the succeeding Constitution) the states retained sovereignty over all governmental functions not specifically deputed to the confederation
This tax was called a tariff. Southerners felt these tariffs were unfair and aimed toward them because they imported a wider variety of goods than most Northern people. Taxes were also placed on many Southern goods that were shipped to foreign countries, an expense that was not always applied to Northern goods of equal value. An awkward economic structure allowed states and private transportation companies to do this, which also affected Southern banks that found themselves paying higher interest rates on loans made with banks in the North. The situation grew worse after several "panics", including one in 1857 that affected more Northern banks than Southern. Southern financiers found themselves burdened with high payments just to save Northern banks that had suffered financial losses through poor investment.
I have two great enemies, the Southern Army in front of me & the financial institutions at the rear, the latter is my greatest foe. Corporations have been enthroned, and an era of corruption in high places will follow, and the money power of the country will endeavor to prolong its reign by working upon the prejudices of the people until the wealth is aggregated in the hands of a few, and the Republic is destroyed. I feel at this moment more anxiety for the safety of my country than ever before, even in the midst of war. God grant that my suspicions may prove groundless.----Abraham Lincoln 1864