Troy Daily Times, December 19, 1860
Among the numerous plans proposed for changing the character of our institutions by a dissolution of the Union, is one for the organization of a central confederacy, to be composed of the border slave, and the border free States, united upon the basis of mutual benefit. If the present Government should ever be dissolved, such an one would eventually grow out of the necessities of the communities named. The danger of servile insurrection and emancipation by force, would be one of the greatest hazards of a Southern Republic. It would be but a step across the border from Illinois, Indiana, Ohio or Pennsylvania, for abolition emissaries who might provoke conspiracies or invite escapes, and returning back into the State whence they emanated, they would be under a foreign government, and beyond reach of punishment. When Slavery dissolves the Union, free States will be unlikely to make laws for the protection of slave property. On the other hand commercial considerations would disincline the border free States to severance from their Southern neighbors.—Pennsylvania is particularly and vitally interested in the Virginia trade;—Ohio, and Indiana, by their great water and railroad routes, have built up important. traffic with Kentucky and Tennessee. By means of the Missouri and Mississippi the vast seaboard interests of the Gulf are to be reached, and these would all be involved. The Southern Republic would undoubtedly be free trade. The interests of the Northwest are in the same direction. They would naturally, therefore, prefer affiliation with the States from which they would obtain their goods at least duty.—These and various other considerations of interest, might bring about an organization on the plan proposed. The strong points of repulsion presented by the differences on the question of Slavery, would become matters of arbitration, diminishing in strength as other features of interest attracted attention. As between the border States, free and slave, these questions are less controlling than in reference to those more remote. If the day ever comes when our Union is dissolved, and Governments of rival and conflicting characters and interests established in its stead, we may look forward to an organization of numerous petty confederacies, based upon mercenary considerations, and coalesced by sordid impulses—re-producing in their careers the history of the Mexican and South American Republics. Therefore it is the duty of every patriot, by all considerations of love to his country, to stand firmly and irrevocably opposed to such a radical change of its institutions.