Our Collection

At the Institute’s core is the Gilder Lehrman Collection, one of the great archives in American history. More than 75,000 items cover five hundred years of American history, from Columbus’s 1493 letter describing the New World to soldiers’ letters from World War II and Vietnam. Explore primary sources, visit exhibitions in person or online, or bring your class on a field trip.

Davis, Jefferson (1808-1889) President's message

High-resolution images are available to schools and libraries via subscription to American History, 1493-1943. Check to see if your school or library already has a subscription. Or click here for more information. You may also order a pdf of the image from us here.

Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC08486 Author/Creator: Davis, Jefferson (1808-1889) Place Written: Richmond, Virginia Type: Pamphlet Date: 18 November 1861 Pagination: 8 p. ; 24.5 x 15.5 cm.

Summary of Content: Address to the Confederate Congress regarding the progress of the war, Southern production, international relations and the Trent Affair. Celebrates Southern success on the battlefield, proclaims Southern independence permanent and unstoppable, states production or war materiel is increasing. Attacks the North for violating international laws in various ways, most importantly by arresting two Confederate ambassadors aboard a British ship. These arrests would set off the Trent Affair, named after the boat that captured the diplomats. The British were just as upset as the Confederates over the boarding of their ship, and almost commenced hostilities against the United States over this affront to their sovereignty. But an American apology allowed war to be avoided, and in the end the event may have improved the relationship between Great Britain and the United States.

People: Davis, Jefferson, 1808-1889

Historical Era: Civil War and Reconstruction, 1861-1877

Subjects: Civil WarMilitary HistoryConfederate General or LeaderConfederate States of AmericaGovernment and CivicsGlobal History and CivicsForeign AffairsTrent AffairBattleNavyMaritimeDiplomacy

Sub Era: The American Civil War

Order a Copy Citation Guidelines for Online Resources