On February 8, 1861, the provisional constitution of the Confederates States of America was approved at the congress held in Montgomery, Alabama. The constitution was approved by seven states– South Carolina, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Texas, Florida and Louisiana. It was formally adopted on March 11, 1861. (Virginia, North Carolina, Arkansas, and Tennessee joined later when they individually seceded.)
The Preamble of the constitution stated as follows: “We, the people of the Confederate States, each State acting in its sovereign and independent character, in order to form a permanent federal government, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity — invoking the favor and guidance of Almighty God — do ordain and establish this Constitution for the Confederate States of America.”
The following day, the President and Vice-President of the Confederacy were chosen. Those two leaders were Jefferson Davis (Mississippi) and Alexander Stephens (Georgia). Stephens spoke saying emphatically that the basic principle of the new government “rest(ed) upon the great truth that the Negro is not equal to the white many; that slavery – subordination to the superior race – is his natural and normal condition. This, our new government, is the first, in the history of the world, based upon this great physical, philosophical and moral truth.”
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