I SHALL now resume the story of Mississippi. The interference of the President, through Sheridan after the conflict at Vicksburg, obscured the gleam of light from the Democratic victory in the general congressional elections of 1874, drawing even from Lamar these despairing words: "I think the future of Mississippi is very dark. Ames has it dead. There can be no escape from his rule. His negro regiments are nothing. He will get them killed up and then Grant will take possession for him. May God help us!"1 But as the months wore on, confidence was regained and the men representing the intelligence and property of the State determined to carry the fall election of 1875 and get a legislature of their own choice. On August 3, the Democratic convention met and listened at the outset to a speech from Lamar. "If any one thing is true," he said, "the people of Mississippi have pledged themselves to maintain the three amendments to the Constitution [XIII, XIV, XV] and have no power or desire to change them." He urged that the sacred rights of "the newly enfranchised race" be respected and in a private letter he told of his labouring with his fellow Democrats: "I have just emerged," he wrote, "from a struggle to keep our people from a race conflict."2 Later in the month the Republicans held their convention and then began the most exciting canvass which Mississippi had____________________
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Publication information: Book title: History of the United States from the Compromise of 1850 to the McKinley-Bryan Campaign of 1896. Volume: 7. Contributors: James Ford Rhodes - Author. Publisher: Macmillan. Place of publication: New York. Publication year: 1920. Page number: 192.