The Future Virginia

April 25, 1868


Virginia awaits a bright future once reconstruction ceases. The state's potential can only be brought about by the white citizens. While the end of slavery left Virginia in a delicate state Virginia will need to recover. New technology such as steamboats and telegraphs will expedite this process and Virginia's plentiful natural resources will give rise to a better a new and improved agriculture and economy than even before the war.


The Future Virginia. As soon as the present troubles are over by the solution of the question of reconstruction, Virginia will begin her new career. We shall not undertake to predict how that solution is to be effected, but as surely as we live, the white Virginian, inferior to no pattern of man on the globe, will govern this State and work out her bright destiny. It is only through him that it can be done. It is only through him that the general happiness and thrift of the community, including the negro, can be secured. The sooner he resumes sway, the better for our own people-the better for the nation. Occupying, as Virginia does, the most favored belt of the globe-that producing the largest amount and variety of the necessaries of life ; that in which prevails the most grateful temperature, the most favorable for health and the highest exertions of man, and the largest reward or his labors; that in which the intellect finds its greatest stimulus-she, must become the point of diffusion of literature, science, art, and improvement in every branch of industry. Her inexhaustible earthly treasures are at hand, whose development will strengthen and cherish the institutions of learning and the plans and enterprises which are to constitute her the nursery of all that tends to elevate men and make the State great. Slavery has heretofore been a barrier to the demonstration of her advantages. That is ended. And although it will take time to recover from the prostration which the violent abolition of that institution has caused, yet, in these days of steam and telegraphs, ages become as years, and years as months, in the cycles of a nation's history. We shall soon recover-soon triumph over the consequences of the war, and of that abolition which should have been the work of years, but which was accomplished is a single day ! With the new order of things, the growth of the State will perhaps exceed anything known on this Continent save the magic prosperity of California. The embarrassments and complications of landed property will be solved very rapidly. It is impossible that they can be continued for a long, period of time. Death and bankruptcy will, like the axe laid at the root of the tree, soon banish this wilderness of complications. A new life will spring from the old, which will pass away naturally and speedily. The devoted Virginian, contemplating this, may feel his heart beat with anxiety, and his wounded pride may bow his head in sorrow. Yet he should not give way to vain regret and idle mortification. If he but have faith as a grain of mustard seed in his noble State--in her sir, her earth, and her waters he will be strengthened and consoled by the assurance that whatever happens, whoever comes, Virginia will be Virginia still. Like Rome conquering the Goth, and converting the savages, her conquerors, into men, Virginia will make Virginians of those who come to east their lots in her delighted homes. Her spirit lives. Her grand physical constitution remains, and will continue to survive all the reverses, all the convulsions, growing out of the political hostilities and sectional strifes of the land.
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Mallory Haskins




“The Future Virginia,” Reconstructing Virginia, accessed May 20, 2022,