Secession "is the only alternative now left"
Resolutions adopted by 52 men in Grayson County, March 22, 1861, Executive Papers of Governor John Letcher, Acc. 36787, State Government Records Collection, Record Group 3, Library of Virginia.
On March 22, 1861, a group of 52 men in Grayson County, in the mountains of southwestern Virginia, petitioned the Virginia Convention asking for immediate secession of the state and denouncing proposals for a compromise or a convention of border slave states. The petitioners sent their demand to the governor, and it was later presented to the Convention on April 13, 1861. Another and longer set of resolutions in favor of secession that was adopted in the county was read to the Convention on March 29. Although the petitioners on March 22 described the residents of the county as almost unanimously in favor of secession, the voters there had been deeply divided on the question on February 4, when they elected an opponent of secession to represent them in the convention.