Baptists and the American Civil War: April 19, 1861

Sam Houston, Texas GovernorFormer Texas Governor Sam Houston, since his removal from office a month ago as a result of his refusal to pledge an oath of allegiance to the Confederate Constitution, has often been asked why he refuses to support the Confederacy.

Today Houston, a Baptist, is in Galveston, where a crowd gathers outside his hotel. Leaning out his window, the former Governor listens to the shouts from the throng. Signaling for the crowd to quiet down, Houston speaks the following words that will prove prophetic:

“Let me tell you what is coming. After the sacrifice of countless millions of treasure and hundreds of thousands of lives, you may win Southern independence if God be not against you, but I doubt it. I tell you that, while I believe with you in the doctrine of states rights, the North is determined to preserve this Union. They are not a fiery, impulsive people as you are, for they live in colder climates. But when they begin to move in a given direction, they move with the steady momentum and perseverance of a mighty avalanche; and what I fear is, they will overwhelm the South.”

Source: James l. Haley, Sam Houston, University of Oklahoma Press, 2004, p. 397