"Forty-four years have passed away since the Civil War came to an end and we are now able to take a dispassionate view of the question in dispute. The people of the South are now generally agreed that the institution of slavery was a direful curse to both races. We of the North must confess that there was considerable foundation for the asserted right of States to secede. Although the Constitution did in distinct terms make the Federal Government supreme, it was not so understood at first by the people either North or South. Particularism prevailed everywhere at the beginning. Nationalism was an aftergrowth and a slow growth proceeding mainly from the habit into which people fell of finding their common centre of gravity at Washington City and of viewing it as the place whence the American name and fame were blazoned to the world. During the first half century of the Republic, the North and South were changing coats from time to time, on the subject of State Rights and the right to secede, but meanwhile the Constitution itself was working silently in the North to undermine the particularism of Jefferson and to strengthen the nationalism of Hamilton. It had accomplished its work in the early thirties, when it found its perfect expression in Webster's reply to Hayne. But the Southern people were just as firmly convinced that Hayne was the victor in that contest as the Northern people were that Webster was. The vast material interests bottomed on slavery offset and neutralised the unifying process in the South, while it continued its wholesome work in the North, and thus the clashing of ideas paved the way for the clash of arms. That the behaviour of the slaveholders resulted from the circumstances in which they were placed and not from any innate deviltry is a fact now conceded by all impartial men. It was conceded by Lincoln both before the War and during the War, and this fact accounts for the affection bestowed upon him by Southern hearts to-day."