"The people of the South may be divided into two classes. There is the industrious class, laboring earnestly to build up what has been broken down, striving to restore prosperity to the country, and interested mainly in the great question of providing food and clothing for themselves and families. These form the great majority of the people. Then there is another class, an utterly irresponsible class, composed mainly of young men who were the "bucks" of Southern society before the war, and chiefly spent their time in lounging round the courtrooms and bars, in chicken fighting and gambling. These have been greatly broken up by the war; many of them have been killed; but those who remain are still disturbing elements in the community, and are doing much mischief. It is this class of men, and a number of the poor whites, who have formed gangs for horse-stealing. It is they who in some instances have made attacks on officers of the Freedmen's Bureau, and have ill-treated the freedmen. It is they who afford the main pretext for saying that there is among the people of the South a feeling of hostility toward the United States Government. But they are not the representatives of the Southern people. They form but an insignificant minority in the community, and even they are actuated not so much by a feeling of opposition to the Government as by a reluctance to earn their own livelihood by honest labor and individual exertion."
"We write under a deep sense of responsibility. The fate of our country is suspended on the events of a few short months. By virtue of prompt, earnest, faithful efforts, we may be redeemed from a fate worse than death, and our country may be blessed with peace and free government. If we sleep, or if we meanly and ignobly refuse to listen to the calls of our struggling, bleeding land, we may plunge into a yawning abyss of degradation, ruin and misery, and fall like the darkened star to rise no more."
"On June 19, 1865, Major General Gordon Granger landed at the port of Galveston to extend Union military and civil authority over Texas. The most controversial and far-reaching of his civil edicts, General Order No. 3, enforced the terms of the Emancipation Proclamation and liberated more than 200,000 Black slaves. That event is commemorated today as Juneteenth."