It is now universally known that, on the twentieth day of last December, the people of South Carolina, in Convention assembled, solemnly annulled the ordinance by which they became members of the Federal Union, entitled the United States of America, and resumed to themselves the exercise of all the powers which they had delegated to the Federal Congress. South Carolina has now become a separate and independent State. She takes her place as an equal among the other nations of the earth. This is certainly one of the most grave and important events of modern times. It involves the destiny of a continent, and through that continent, the fortunes of the human race. As it is a matter of the utmost moment that the rest of the world, and especially that the people of the United States, should understand the causes which have brought about this astounding result, we propose, in a short article, and in a candid and dispassionate spirit, to explain them, and to make an appeal, both to the slave-holding and non-slave-holding States, touching their duty in the new and extraordinary aspect which affairs have assumed.