The facts and opinions herein
communicated you are at liberty to
make known to those with whom you may choose to confer, but they
are not to be published in the newspapers.
I have had a full and free conversation with General Gist, the substance of which is contained in this letter. He will, however, give it to you more in detail. It is my opinion that all the States that may determine to take action upon the election of Lincoln should call a convention as soon as practicable after the result is known.
With great respect, your ob’t serv’t,
[Sidenote] MS. Confederate Archives.
EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT, Nov.
His EXCELLENCY GOVERNOR GIST.
DEAR SIR: Your communication of the 5th ultimo reached me per last mail under cover from General States Rights Gist, with an explanatory note from that gentleman in relation to the subject-matters thereof.
The mode employed by your Excellency to collect authoritatively the views of several of the Executives of the Southern States as to their plan of action in the event of the election of Lincoln, commends itself warmly to my judgment. Concert of action can alone be arrived at by a full and free interchange of opinion between the Executives of the Cotton States, by whom it is confidently expected that the ball will be put in motion.
We are in the midst of grave events, and I have industriously sought to learn the public mind in this State in the event of the election of Lincoln, and am proud to say Florida is ready to wheel into line with the gallant Palmetto State, or any other Cotton State or States, in any course which she or they may in their judgment think proper to adopt, looking to the vindication and maintenance of the rights, interest, honor, and safety of the