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This Day in Georgia Civil War History

May 15, 1861

Speech in Atlanta Praised Georgia Volunteers

The Richmond Times Dispatch printed a speech which had been given in Atlanta, praising the Georgia soldiers volunteering for service, and urging all to be ready for action to defend the South.

The Uprising of the South. –Hon. R. M. T. Hunter, while in Atlanta, Ga., on his way to Montgomery, complied with the desire of a large crowd of citizens, and made a speech.–After some preliminary remarks, he said: ‘But this is no time for talk. The enemy approaches us. They have gathered a large force along our border, and threaten to invade our soil for the purpose of subjugating us. But we are ready and able to receive them. We wage no aggressive war on any one. We stand on our own soil; and, by the help of God, we will defend it to the last, against the invading hordes of Abolitionists which now threaten us with destruction.–When I left Virginia, I was informed of their gathering on our borders. Our own brave sons were up in arms, going forth to meet them. As I came along, I met the South Carolina Regiment going forth to shed their blood, if need be, in our defence. I also saw the gallant Georgia soldiers which have rallied to the defence of Portsmouth and Norfolk. As I passed through Lynchburg, I saw two splendid Regiments of Alabama soldiers on their way to the point of our country’s danger; and still, as I came on, I met the brave soldiers from Mississippi coming to our rescue. I also noticed that a most cordial and hearty greeting and welcome was everywhere extended to all those soldiers who have so patriotically, and with such alacrity, stepped forth to defend our country in this her hour of danger. The men met them with shouts and cheers. The women and children, from the windows, waved their handkerchiefs, and threw their bouquets. ‘But, as I said before, this is no time for speaking. Events are rapidly hastening upon each other and upon us. Now is the time for action. The South is prepared and ready for it. When we have fought through this war - this unnatural war which the fiendishness of Abolition bigotry and fanaticism is waging on us; when we have achieved a glorious victory, and triumphed over all our foes; when our liberties have been secured, and peace shall spread her gentle wings and return to us from her banishment, to take up her abode with us around our altars and our hearth-stones - then we can speak to all the world and tell of our goodly heritage, our superior Government, the liberties of our people, and the rich blessings we shall enjoy.