From the N. O. Times Picayune issue of Dec. 30, 1860.
St. Mary Parish, Louisiana
A large meeting of the citizens of the parish of St. Mary was held at the courthouse in Franklin, on Saturday, the 23rd., inst., in answer to a call, numerously signed and published in the Planters’ Banner of the 15th., inst., to express the sentiments of the people upon the issues between the North and the South, and the best method to be adopted by the people of our State, and the South, to protect their honor and secure their rights.
The Hon. J. W. Walker was called to the chair and D. Dennett and Seth W. Lewis, were appointed secretaries. Upon taking the chair the president offered some appropriate remarks on the present condition of the country, setting forth the disadvantage of hasty state action, and the benefits of the calm deliberation of a united South.
The following is a list of the vice presidents: Hon. T. W. Palfrey, John m. Bateman, Dr. H. J. Saunders, Theo Alexander, R. Stout, Dr. J. S. Grout, Richard Duke, Thomas Eilcoxen, Esq., Hon. P. C. Bethel, Dr. Ethan Allen, J. L. Cowan, Wm. Garrett, Hon. Joshua Baker, Benjamin Hudson, Esq., David Berwick, Jesse E. Lacy, Nathan Berwick, Julius A. Johnson, Davidson Bell, W. F. Weeks, Ursin Perrett, T. M. Johnson, Joseph A. Frere, John B. Murphy, Louis Grevemberg, Donelson Caffery, Euphrosis Carlin, Andrew Smith, Samuel L. Randlet, Joseph Olivier.
The following persons were appointed a committee to draft resolutions expressive of the sense of the meeting; Hon. W. T. Palfrey, J. B. Price, Hon. P. C. Bethel, H. C. Wilson, Esq., A. McWilliams, Esq., and Hon. Joshua Baker.
The following are the preamble and resolutions reported by the committee:
Preamble. Whereas, a political party in the Northern States of this confederacy, brought into existence by the efforts of an English Lecturer, George Thompson, about thirty years ago, activated by a spirit and governed by principles which are hostile to the people and institutions of the South, has gradually increased in numbers, in influence, in power and violence, until now its controls and overshadows the whole North, reigns supreme in all their legislatures and in nearly every Northern Pulpit, has elected an avowed enemy of the South president of the United States, and threatens to crush the South beneath its vandal tread; and
Whereas, the members of that deluded party, bidding defiance to all moral, political and religious restraints, have stolen Southern property to the amount of millions of dollars, insulted our citizens, enacted in thirteen state legislatures, laws defying the constitution of their country; and
Whereas, they have just given the crowning proof of hostility to us by electing to the chief magistracy of this country over national conservative and honorable competitors of unquestionable statesmanship a man whose chief merits in the estimation of nearly two million of the supporters consisted in his hostility to us and in his ability to afford them powerful aid in their efforts to overthrow and ruin us; therefore,
- Resolved, that the time has at length arrived when the dire necessities of the Southern people call upon them to unite, and prepare promptly to sustain their rights and protect themselves against the future aggressions of their Northern foes.
- Resolved, That we deem a convention of all the slaveholding states, according to the expressed wishes of twelve out of fifteen Southern governors, including the governor of Louisiana, to decided upon and recommend to the several states some uniform plan of action in this crisis, an imperious necessity at the present time, in order to prevent anarchy and dissatisfaction among our own people, and to secure ultimate success.
- Resolved, That we decidedly oppose the precipitate unconditional secession of the state of Louisiana from the confederacy and can see no safety for her in the future, but in her united action with her sister slaveholding states.
- Resolved, That we are utterly opposed to the secession of all or any of the Southern states from the Confederacy, until they are prepared to defend themselves, and have fully completed their arrangements for governing themselves wisely after secession.
- Resolved, That in voting for members of the state convention to meet at Baton Rouge, on the 23rd of January next, we will ignore all old party ties, names and influences, and vote for the men in whose hands this convention believes the honor and the interests of the state and the South can most safely be trusted.
- Resolved, That the action of the state convention ought not to be final, until ratified by the people at the ballot box.
- Resolved, That in the event of secession, we regard the Lamar plan of action as the best that has yet been proposed, and until a better is presented, that will be our choice.