February 4 - 1861 - The Government of the Confederate States of America is Formed
When a large number of states had seceded from the Union after the election of Abraham Lincoln, they quickly realized they needed to band together in a larger government. So delegates from South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Texas met in Montgomery, Alabama, they knew they had to work fast. Although they were working a month before Lincoln's inauguration, they wanted to make sure they were ready to go. They had two advantages in working quickly, namely that they knew the United States Constitution well and that they were united on the issue of protecting slavery. Therefore, the provisional government could be formed almost immediately, with Jefferson Davis as President and Alexander Stephens as Vice President. It would be Stephens, in a speech one month later, who would clearly elucidate the reason for forming a government, that they were built on the "cornerstone" of white supremacy and the defense of slavery.