Friday, February 4, 2011

The Confederate States of America was formed 150 Years Ago Today

Alabama State Capitol Building
On February 4, 1861, delegates from the seven Southern states that had declared their independence from the Union met in Montgomery, Alabama, and declared the existence of a new nation, the Confederate States of America.

The meeting took place at the historic Alabama State Capitol Building, which also would serve as the first capitol of the Confederacy. As the delegates convened in the magnificent old building, they declared themselves a provisional legislature for the new Southern nation and authorized a committee to begin work on drafting a Constitution that would unify the seceded states for their common defense and welfare.

First Capitol of the Confederacy
The move would set the stage for the largest conflict of arms ever to take place on the North American continent. The new Southern nation defied the will of the old Union and attempts at negotiation to resolve the difference between the two governments would fail. It would be from Montgomery, two months later, that President Jefferson Davis would issue the order for Confederate guns to open fire on Fort Sumter. That attack would officially open the War Between the States or Civil War. By the time the war came to an end, the history of the United States and its people would be forever changed.

The historic Alabama Capitol Building which served as the First Capitol of the Confederacy remains in use today. It stands atop Goat Hill at the end of Dexter Avenue and has looked out on an amazing array of monumental historical events, from the formation of the Confederacy and beginning of the Civil War to the end of the Selma to Montgomery March during the Civil Rights Movement.

To learn more about the building's role as the First Capitol of the Confederacy, please visit

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