Recognize the independence of the Confederate States
Speech of John Echols, of Monroe County, in the Virginia Convention, March 1, 1861, printed in George H. Reese and William H. Gaines, Jr., eds., Proceedings of the Virginia State Convention of 1861 (Richmond: Virginia State Library, 1965), 1:275–276.
On March 1, 1861, four days before Abraham Lincoln was inaugurated as president of the United States, John Echols introduced a resolution in the Virginia Convention urging the United States government to recognize the independence of the Confederate States of America. Elected to the convention as an opponent of secession from the western mountain county of Monroe, Echols was one of several delegates who hoped that allowing the lower South slave states to secede peacefully would preserve peace. He voted against secession on April 4, 1861, when a motion to secede failed to pass, but voted for secession when the motion passed on April 17.