The Deed is Done

March 20, 1869

Summary

The proposition to prolonging the day of vacating the offices of Virginia was not passed. Virginians' say that "never was there such disproportion between the intelligence and virtue of a people and the men who fill the public places over them."

Transcription

The Deed is Done. The resolution for prolonging the day of emptying all the offices in Virginia of men who cannot take the iron clad oath, and filling them with men who can take that oath, as we predicted, Is dead. So now, in a few days, we shall have what reasonable men might set down as the climax in the degradation of this venerable State. We shall have a people governed by men as different from them in sentiment, opinion, and character, as those Russians who rule In Poland are from the people they govern. Worse than in Poland, the men here are not selected from the really educated and capable men in the public service ; but the commander of the district is driven to choose for the vacant offices from a very incompetent body of men from the floating population of adventurers, whose limited merits were not adequate to success in their native land. All unknown and unfitting as these people are, they will eagerly take charge of the public affairs of a people noted for their integrity and justice, their love of law, and their great familiarity with the science of government. Never was there such disproportion between the intelligence and virtue of a people and the men who fill the public places over them. General Schofield said the people of Virginia were the easiest governed people in the world. They were so orderly and lawabiding. He stated to the Government that no soldiers were needed by him to enforce his authority. General Stoneman has made a similar communication. He wanted only a few messengers all the soldiers might be removed if needed. And yet such a people are pronounced incapable of self government, and strangers from without are called to administer justice and disburse the public moneys ! Still, we can only be patient in passing through the valley of the shadow of political death.
About this article

Contributed By

Joseph McEachon

Identifier

McEachonJoseph-18690320-TheDeedisDone.pdf

Citation

“The Deed is Done,” Reconstructing Virginia, accessed December 5, 2022, https://reconstructingvirginia.richmond.edu/items/show/1294.