Notes: One of the earliest Florida Confederate imprints, on the press before and completed after the state voted to secede from the Union. This is a nicely-bound volume of the daily log of this legislative session in the Florida House, with the message of Governor Madison S. Perry and the accompanying state office reports. The session ran from November 26, 1860, to February 14, 1861.
This was a momentous period in Florida's history. The governor's message, at the front of the volume, urged the legislature to call a convention to discuss seceding from the Union, a recommendation that was followed in January 1861. A formal ordinance of seccession was adopted on January 10, 1861. The legislature's work continued much as before in the days immediately following, until Gov. Perry sent a second message to the legislature, encouraging appropriations for a militia to defend the state and the soon-to-be-formed Confederacy.
The rhetoric in Perry's messages could almost have been written today, with its implication that the recent presidential election had been fraudulent, that the federal government was fixated on destroying the South, and that the freedoms of the people were under threat. He "foresaw" ruin "in the impending ascendancy of the Black Republican party" and in his claim that "no lover of human liberty" in the North protested when the Republicans announced plans to "compel millions of their fellow men... to submit to a government under which they honestly believed they could not enjoy their admitted and just rights." Of course, those "just rights" were the legal right to enslave men, women, and children of African descent. The contradictions between the South's claim to "liberty" and the right to enslave has seldom been made more plain (see pp. 251–255).
390 pages. Unlike previous volumes in this series, the documents supporting the governor's message are inserted following the adjournment of the legislature for Christmas, rather than at the end of the session. The 1860 date on the title page probably refers to when the printing began. It is likely that the Journal was printed in stages during the legislative session and completed soon after it ended. This is therefore one of the first Florida Confederate imprints, on the press before secession and completed after.
Parrish and Willingham, Confederate Imprints, 2744.
Edition + Condition: Contents generally very good; title page laid down on paper; some loss to the lower margin of the first few leaves (no separate wrappers, as issued). Finely bound in three-quarter's leather and marbled paper-covered boards. The spine has raised bands and is stamped in gilt. A truly lovely period-style binding.
Publication: Tallahassee, FL: Office of the Floridian & Journal, Printed by Dyke & Carlisle, 1860 (completed 1861).
Item No: #308255