22 April 1864: “. . . the principles enunciated by him, accord with the true spirit of our institutions, and constitute, in fact, the very ‘foundation stone’ of all liberty.”

Item Description: “Speech of Hon. A. H. Brown” (editorial), The Daily Conservative (Raleigh, N. C.), 22 April 1864, page 2, column 1.



Citation: “Speech of Hon. A. H. Stephens,” The Daily Conservative (Raleigh, N. C.), 22 April 1864, page 2, column 1. North Carolina Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; call number call number C071 Z.


RALEIGH, N. C., APRIL 22, 1864
JOHN D. HYMAN, Editor.


Speech of Hon. A. H. Stephens.

At the earliest practicable moment we hasten to republish the speech of the Hon. A H  STEPHENS, of Georgia, on the subject of habeas corpus.

It will be found an able and patriotic production, breathing the most unwavering devotion to the cause of Southern independence, and replete with true conservative sentiments.

While all loyal men deplore the slightest variance between those in authority, and deeply regret the circumstances which have placed the Vice-President in a position of open antagonism to the government ; but few in this State will deny that the principles enunciated by him, accord with the true spirit of our institutions, and constitute, in fact, the very “foundation stone” of all real liberty.

In a mode less calculated perhaps, to produce popular excitement, and to publish our internal dissentions to the world, GOV. VANCE anticipated Mr. Stephens in the expression of the very sentiments which now find such ardent advocates in those who oppose him and favor the election of another.

Long in advance of Mr. STEPHENS or GOV. BROWN, it is a matter of official record, and no man can deny the fact, that GOV. VANCE, in the name of liberty, law and the chartered rights of our people, protested against the suspension of the writ of habeas corpus, as a [measure] fraught with the most direful results to the country ; and that he subsequently insisted that the President should not exercise the dangerous power so unwisely placed in his hands, within the limits of this State, or to the detriment of its citizens, because neither justice, necessity nor the interest of the Confederacy demanded such a course of conduct.

It is incontestably true, also, that he has always favored the speedy repeal of this obnoxious law; and that his personal and official influence have been freely and constantly exerted to the attainment of that most desirable end.

His whole administration has been devoted to the patriotic task of maintaining the supremacy of civil law, and in opposing the encroachments of military authority, as can be established by the records of the Executive department, which constitute a portion of the history of the State, and are public property.

In a word, hating despotism in all its forms, and sincerely desirous of preserving the institutions of his country in their purity and perfection, even amid the contaminations of a revolutionary era, he has never [failed] to resist the slightest aggression on the part of those in authority, or faltered in his advocacy of that independence of thought, liberty of speech, freedom of the press, and jealousy of chartered rights which constitute the chief glory and attraction of a Republican form of government.

[All the] praise, therefore, which has been so freely lavished upon the positions assumed by Mr STEPHENS in his recent speech, belongs, as a matter of right, to GOV. VANCE, since he had taken them—though in a less ostentatious manner—months in advance, and has persistently adhered to them ever since.

Let the people remember, then, that our excellent Governor is the pioneer in that honored path which others are now attempting to appropriate—that the platform upon which his political opponents are endeavoring to stand for partisan ends, was first constructed by him in an honest effort to serve his country; and that the commendations that certain parties have so liberally bestowed upon Mr. STEPHENS are really tributes to the wisdom, the patriotism and the true conservatism of GOV. VANCE, since the principles of these two great statesmen are identical.


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