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Title: Expansion and Conflict
Author: Dodd, William E.
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Expansion and Conflict" ***

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[Illustration: Copyright, 1891, by M. B. Rice.

(signature) Abraham Lincoln]

                                EXPANSION AND


                               WILLIAM E. DODD


                            HOUGHTON MIFFLIN COMPANY
                            BOSTON NEW YORK CHICAGO
                              The Riverside Press

                      COPYRIGHT, 1915, BY WILLIAM E. DODD
                             ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

                            The Riverside Press
                         CAMBRIDGE · MASSACHUSETTS
                                  U. S. A.


The purpose of this volume is to show the action and reaction of the
most important social, economic, political, and personal forces that
have entered into the make-up of the United States as a nation. The
primary assumption of the author is that the people of this country did
not compose a nation until after the close of the Civil War in 1865. Of
scarcely less importance is the fact that the decisive motive behind the
different groups in Congress at every great crisis of the period under
discussion was sectional advantage or even sectional aggrandizement. If
Webster ceased to be a particularist after 1824 and became a nationalist
before 1830, it was because the interests of New England had undergone a
similar change; or, if Calhoun deserted about the same time the cause of
nationalism and became the most ardent of sectionalists, it was also
because the interests of his constituents, the cotton and tobacco
planters of the South, had become identified with particularism, that
is, States rights.

And corollary to these assumptions is the further fact that public men
usually determine what line of procedure is best for their constituents,
or for what are supposed to be the interests of those constituents, and
then seek for "powers" or clauses in State or Federal Constitutions
which justify the predetermined course. This being, as a rule, true, the
business of the historian is to understand the influences which led to
the first, not the second, decision of the Representative or Senator or
President or even Justice of the Supreme Court. Hence long-winded
speeches or tortuous decisions of courts have not been studied so
closely as the statistics of the cotton or tobacco crops, the reports of
manufacturers, and the conditions of the frontier, which determined more
of the votes of members of Congress than the most eloquent persuasion of
great orators.

Thus the following pages utterly fail of their purpose if they do not
picture the background of congressional and sectional conflicts during
the period from Andrew Jackson to Abraham Lincoln. But, to be sure, in
so brief a book all the contributing elements of the growing national
life cannot be fully described or even be mentioned. Still, it is the
hope of the author that all the greater subjects have been treated. What
has been omitted was omitted in order to devote more space to what
seemed to be more important, not in order to suppress what some may
consider to be of primary significance. Three hundred short pages for
the story of the great conflict which raged from 1828 to 1865 do not
offer much latitude for explanations and diversions along the way. Nor
is it possible for any one to describe this conflict satisfactorily even
to all historians, to say nothing of the participants who still live and
entertain the most positive and contradictory convictions. Hence one
must present one's own narrative and be content if open-mindedness and
honesty of purpose be acknowledged.

The book is intended for the maturer students in American colleges and
universities and for readers who may be desirous of knowing why things
happened as they did as well as how they happened. And by the employment
of collateral readings suggested in the short bibliographies at the
close of each chapter, both the college student and the more general
reader may find his way through the labyrinth of conflicting opinion and
opposing authorities which make up the body of our written history.

To make this task easier some twenty-five maps have been prepared and
inserted at the appropriate places in the text. These maps, perhaps one
might say photographs of social or economic conditions, attempt to
present the greater sectional and industrial groups of "interests" which
entered into the common life of _ante-bellum_ times. They treat party
evolution, economic development, and social antagonisms in a way which,
it seems to the author, should help the reader to a better understanding
of things than would be possible by the simple narrative.

For permission to use the maps on pages 291, 313, and 327 the author
expresses his thanks to the publishers of _The Encyclopedia Americana_.

In this connection cordial thanks are extended to Professor J. F.
Jameson and Dr. C. O. Paullin, of the Carnegie Institution of
Washington, for the privilege of using the data which they collected on
the election of 1828 and the vote in Congress on the Tariff of 1832.
Likewise Mr. P. L. Phillips, of the Division of Maps of the Library of
Congress, has given the author much assistance. Nor must I fail to say
that many of my students have rendered practical aid in working out the
details of several of the maps. Mr. Edward J. Woodhouse, of Yale
University, very kindly read all the proof and prepared the index. And
Professors A. C. McLaughlin and M. W. Jernegan, of the University of
Chicago; Allen Johnson, of Yale; Carl Becker, of Kansas; and Frederic L.
Paxson, of Wisconsin, have all given counsel and criticism on certain
chapters which have been of great practical benefit.

But in making these acknowledgments for assistance rendered, it is not
intended to shift to other shoulders any of the responsibility for
statements or manner of treatment which may arouse criticism. The book
is intended to be helpful, interpretative, and beyond any sectional
bias. If the author has not been successful, it is not the fault of
others, nor because of any sparing of personal efforts.

_William E. Dodd._


   I. _Andrew Jackson_                                               1

  II. _The West_                                                    20

 III. _The East_                                                    39

  IV. _Conflict and Compromise_                                     58

   V. _The Triumph of Jackson_                                      77

  VI. _Distress and Reaction_                                       96

 VII. _The Militant South_                                         114

VIII. _War and Conquest_                                           147

  IX. _The Abolitionists_                                          161

   X. _Prosperity_                                                 184

  XI. _American Culture_                                           208

 XII. _Stephen A. Douglas_                                         231

XIII. _Abraham Lincoln_                                            251

 XIV. _The Appeal to Arms_                                         268

  XV. _One Nation or Two?_                                         289

 XVI. _The Collapse of the Confederacy_                            309

      _Index_                                                        i


_The Presidential Election of_ 1828              _between_ 18 _and_ 19

_Distribution of Indians and Location of Indian
Lands and Unorganized Territory of
the United States or the States_                                    26

_The Distribution of Industrial Plants in_ 1833                     49

_The Vote in the House of Representatives on
the Tariff of_ 1832 _in Eastern and Western
States_                                          _between_ 66 _and_ 67

_Growth of the West and Removal of Indians
from Cotton, Tobacco, and First Western
Grain Belts_                                                        88

_The Presidential Election of_ 1836              _between_ 92 _and_ 93

_Tobacco Areas in_ 1840                                            133

_Cotton Areas in_ 1840                                             134

_Wheat Areas in_ 1840                                              139

_The Presidential Election of_ 1844            _between_ 148 _and_ 149

_Annexations of_ 1845-53                                           159

_Location of Abolition Societies in_ 1847                          169

_The Presidential Election of_ 1852            _between_ 180 _and_ 181

_The Industrial Belt of_ 1860                                      188

_Railroads in Operation_, 1850                                     190

_Railroads in Operation_, 1860                                     191

_The Black Belt of_ 1860                                           193

_The Cotton Belt of_ 1860                                          196

_Tobacco Areas in_ 1860                                            197

_Wheat Areas in_ 1860                                              200

_The Presidential Election of_ 1860            _between_ 264 _and_ 265

_Conflicting Sectional Interests_, 1850-60                         237

_One Nation or Two_?                                               291

_The Confederacy in_ 1863                                          313

_Regions which surrendered with Lee and
Johnston, April, 1865_                                             327

                             EXPANSION AND CONFLICT

                                   CHAPTER I

                                ANDREW JACKSON

"Let the people rule"--such was the reply that Andrew Jackson made to
the coalition of Henry Clay and John Quincy Adams which made the latter
President. And Andrew Jackson was an interesting man in 1825. He was to
be the leader of the great party of the West which was forming for the
overthrow of the old political and social order. Born in a cabin on the
southern frontier in 1767 and reared in the midst of poverty during the
"hard times" of the Revolution, Jackson had had little opportunity to
acquire the education and polish which so distinguished the leaders of
the old Jeffersonian party. After a season of teaching school and
studying law in Salisbury, North Carolina, he emigrated, in 1788, to
Tennessee, where he soon became a successful attorney, and a few years
later a United States Senator. But public life in Philadelphia proved as
unattractive as school-teaching had been; he returned to the frontier
life of his adopted State and was speedily made a judge, and as such he
sometimes led _posses_ to enforce his decrees. During the second war
with England he made a brilliant campaign against the Creek Indians, who
had sided with the British, and gained the reputation of being the
mortal enemy of the aborigines, a reputation which added greatly to his
popularity in a community which believed that the "only good Indian is a
dead Indian."

At the close of the war, when most men were expecting news that the
British had conquered the lower Mississippi Valley and that the Union
was breaking to pieces, he proved to be the one American general who
could "whip the troops who had beaten Napoleon." The battle of New
Orleans made Jackson an international character, and the West was ready
to crown him a hero and a savior of the nation. Nor did his arbitrary
conduct in the Seminole War, or later, when he was Governor of Florida,
injure him in a region where Indians, Spaniards, and Englishmen had few
rights which an American need respect. The attacks of Henry Clay in the
House of Representatives, and of William H. Crawford in the Cabinet,
were regarded as political maneuvers. When, therefore, Jackson offered
himself in 1823 as a candidate for the Presidency, most Western men
welcomed him, fearing only that his age and his delicate health, of
which he had said too much in public, might cut him off before he could
render his country the great service of which they considered him
capable. The politicians, especially those who followed Henry Clay, did
their utmost to defeat him, and the votes of the West were divided
almost evenly between the two backwoods rivals. But when it became clear
in 1825 that Speaker Clay of the House of Representatives had added his
influence to that of John Quincy Adams in order to prevent Jackson from
winning, Western men everywhere made his cause their cause. "Let the
people rule" became a battle-cry which was taken up in every frontier
State from Georgia to Illinois.

It was time that the people devoted more attention to public affairs;
they had in fact well-nigh abdicated. In Virginia, with a white
population of 625,000, only 15,000 had voted in the election of 1824; in
Pennsylvania, whose population was over a million, only some 47,000 had
taken the trouble to go to the polls; while in Massachusetts, where the
"favorite son" motive operated, just one man in nineteen exercised the
right of suffrage. Government had become the business of "gentlemen" and
of those who made a specialty of politics. The old Jeffersonian machine,
organized as a popular protest against aristocracy and the "money
power," had itself become aristocratic, and it had ceased to represent
the democracy of the United States; and the democracy had lost interest
in its own affairs.

When Clay, the Westerner and long-time opponent of Adams and the New
England element in politics, executed his surprising somersault in
February, 1825, and thus made the eastern leader President and then
himself became Secretary of State, occasion was given to a second
Jefferson to arouse the people to a sense of their responsibility.
Jackson, a very different man from the former man of the people, seized
the opportunity. Thus the campaign of 1828 began in 1825, and in the
course of the bitter struggle which ensued men divided into social
classes much as they had done in 1800. The small farmers of the country
districts and the artisan classes in the towns of the East accepted the
leadership of the West and waged relentless war on behalf of the "old
hero," as Jackson came to be called. The Southern gentry who had
followed Crawford, the Calhoun men, and certain remnants of ancient
Federalism were now compelled to choose between the so-called radicalism
of the West and John Quincy Adams, the Conservative. Two parties thus
took the place of the four Republican factions which had contended for
the control of the Government and especially the offices in 1824.

But contemporary with this larger national conflict there were important
state and local struggles on which the success of Jackson and the West
depended, and which we must survey and estimate, else the real
significance of the campaign of 1828 is apt to be overlooked.

Beginning with the South, where Jackson's lieutenants were expecting
their greatest gains, South Carolina was rent in twain by a conflict of
social and economic forces which was soon to overshadow national issues.
According to the constitutional bargain of 1809, the low country and the
black belt, that is, the region of the historic river plantations and
the newer cotton country, were always to have a majority in both houses
of the legislature, which chose the governor, the judges, and other
important officials. The reason of this was that the great majority of
the slaves were held in this section, and without complete control of
the Government the masters felt that their interests would be
sacrificed to the democracy of the up-country. The hill and mountain
region, on the other hand, had a large majority of the white population.
But by the arrangement of 1809 the people of this section must content
themselves with remaining in the minority in the state legislature, and
suppress whatever of opposition they felt toward the institution of
slavery, the cause of their effacement.

It was, however, this up-country which had been the mainstay of the
Jeffersonian party. Calhoun was a son of this region, and he had grown
up in the midst of the bitterest opposition to the eastern aristocracy.
But gradually, under the influence of cotton-growing, he and some of his
fellows yielded to the old order of the Pinckneys and the Butlers, and
the older order yielded a little to the democratic group in the State.
This produced the united South Carolina which gave to the country
Calhoun, Lowndes, and Hayne, nationalists of the most ardent type in
1816; and for a few years it seemed that these astute leaders would play
the rôle of the old Virginia dynasty.

But when Calhoun, with the aid of high protectionist Pennsylvania, was
bending all his energies, in 1824, to winning the Presidency, there
broke out an insurgency in the former Federalist section of his State
which boded ill for the future. The burden of its complaint was the
national tariff, which bore heavily on the cotton and rice planters.
Between 1824 and 1828 the lower Carolinians developed a vindictive
hostility toward the leaders of nationalism in the State and especially
toward Calhoun, who was considered responsible for the oppressions of
the tariff. Robert Barnwell Rhett and William Smith, two perfect
representatives of aristocratic South Carolina, led the fight. Senator
Hayne was among the first to yield; George McDuffie, an up-country
leader, next surrendered; finally most Southern members of the National
House of Representatives took up the cry against the tariff and extreme
nationalism. Nothing was more certain in 1826 than that Calhoun and his
nationalist party would be driven to the wall.

Vice-President Calhoun had taken note of the coming storm, and in 1827,
when the woolens bill, a highly protectionist measure, was before
Congress, a measure in which all the Middle States' interests were
greatly concerned, he took pains to have his vote recorded against the
bill. Thus he publicly announced his change of heart. A year later he
was even more outspoken in his opposition to the famous "Tariff of
Abominations." However, he had already made an alliance with Jackson,
whose attitude on the tariff no one knew, and who was very popular with
the protectionists of Pennsylvania. It was clearly understood that
Jackson would serve only one term as President and that Calhoun should
succeed him. The leaders of the older section of South Carolina, urging
secession, were now confronted with a peculiar dilemma. A conference
with Calhoun led in 1828 to a reversal of the secession movement, and
culminated in the proposition that South Carolina should suspend the
tariff law of the country and ask a referendum of the various States on
the subject. If this failed, then secession was to be the remedy.
"Nullification" was the name which this referendum soon acquired.

The attitude of South Carolina was that of every other Southern State
from Virginia to Mississippi, and everywhere it was the older and more
important groups of counties which so bitterly opposed the protective
policy. In Virginia college boys met in formal session and resolved to
wear "homespun" rather than submit to the "yoke" of the Northern
manufacturers; in North Carolina the legislature declared the tariff law
unconstitutional. At the commencement of the University of Georgia the
orator of the occasion appeared in a suit of white cotton cloth, while
his valet wore the cast-off suit of shining broadcloth. The "Tariff of
Abominations," passed in 1828, was producing revolutionary results in
all the region where tobacco, cotton, and rice were grown, and this was
the governing section of the South.[1]

[Footnote 1: See maps on pp. 133, 134.]

Nor was this all; Georgia was still at the point of making actual war
upon the United States because the President and Congress did not remove
the Creek and Cherokee Indians as rapidly as the cotton planters
desired. The Cherokees had declared themselves a State within the
boundaries of Georgia, defied both local and national authority, and
applied to the United States Supreme Court for recognition and support.
The Government of Georgia had formally spread her laws over the Indian
lands and imprisoned those who resisted her sway.

This Indian problem which Jackson would have to solve was of the utmost
importance to all the region from Georgia to northwestern Louisiana, for
in that region lived the ambitious and prosperous cotton planters, who
were bent on getting possession of all the fertile lands of their
section, and the legislatures of Alabama and Mississippi followed the
example of Georgia in assuming jurisdiction over all Indians within
their boundaries. Jackson entertained no tender scruples about
dispossessing the natives, a fact which was well known and widely
advertised. When, therefore, Crawford, who had been very popular with
the planters of all the South, gave up his antagonism to the Tennessee
candidate, and joined with the friends of Calhoun, whom Crawford hated
only a little more than he had disliked Jackson, there was no
substantial resistance in any of the States, from South Carolina to
Louisiana. The way was preparing for a united South and West.

If the Crawford men of the lower South gave up their hostility to
Jackson and the extreme anti-nationalists of South Carolina submitted
once more to "Calhoun and Jackson," it was by no means certain what the
gentry of the eastern counties of North Carolina would do. They had
supported Crawford in the last campaign, and there was neither Indian
nor land question to compel them to support the Western candidate.
Moreover, there was a bitter struggle between the east and the west of
North Carolina which resembled very much the secession movement in South
Carolina. The eastern men owned most of the slaves and produced the
large staple crops; controlled the lawmaking and the other departments
of the State Government; and its leaders were generally, if not always,
the spokesmen of the State in national affairs. This position and these
advantages were legacies of the constitution of 1776. The fact that they
were in the minority in point of population served only to whet their
appetites for more power. On the other hand, the leaders of the western
section of the State had fought for twenty-five years to reform the
constitution and the laws, to create new counties in order to secure
proportionate representation, and to expand the suffrage in order that
their majorities might be properly counted.

The bitterness of the two sections threatened to result in civil war or
at least a division of the State. But the eastern men yielded and in
1835 a convention met in Raleigh. The planters were in the majority.
They made concessions, however, in the matter of representation and in
the popular election of the governors, which tended to reconcile the
up-country people. But the control of taxation, suffrage, and
representation remained securely in the hands of the legislative
majority of the low-country counties. Slavery and the allied social
system were henceforth immune, and the distinctions, forms, and
realities of a growing aristocracy made steady encroachments upon the
life of the State until the outbreak of the Civil War.

Contrary as it may seem to the ordinary political interests of such men,
the North Carolina gentry accepted Jackson and the Western party in
1828, and the State was almost a unit in support of the more democratic
element in the nation at the very time it was at the point of breaking
to pieces locally because one section of the State was unwilling to
grant the other a fair chance in the common life.

Nor was it different in Virginia. There the small counties of the east,
with a minority of the white population, controlled both houses of the
assembly, the governorship, the courts, and the majority of the State's
representatives in Congress. This advantage, as in North Carolina, had
been guaranteed by the constitution of 1776. The motive for this
one-sided arrangement was the protection of slave property which, it
must be said, paid the larger share of the taxes. In western Virginia,
extending then to the Ohio River, there was a teeming population whose
ablest leaders constantly resisted this system and demanded their
rights. As elsewhere in the West the program was manhood suffrage, equal
representation, and the popular election of important state officials.

After twenty-five years of agitation, a constitutional convention met in
Richmond in the autumn of 1829. Reformers everywhere looked to this body
in the hope that something might be done to "put slavery in a way to
final extinction." Madison, Monroe, Chief Justice Marshall, and John
Randolph were members. All of these favored eastern Virginia and
defended the privileged minority. Thomas Jefferson Randolph, grandson of
Jefferson, Philip Doddridge, and Alexander Campbell represented the
western section of the State and democracy. After months of debate
which covered every subject in government, and especially slavery and
its possible abolition, the convention decided, in the face of serious
threats of secession on the part of the up country, to grant to the more
populous section only a slight increase in the number of
representatives. The power of property in government was once again
confirmed, and so hopeless was the outlook that prominent anti-slavery
men deserted their own cause and joined the other side during the next

It was not an easy thing for John Randolph, and the other champions of
the eastern Virginia oligarchy to commit their cause to the democratic
party of the Mississippi Valley, whose leader was the "lawless" Jackson.
Yet this is what they did. Nowhere outside of South Carolina was the
influence of Calhoun more effective than in Virginia, and it must have
been this which turned the balance in favor of "the General."

From northern Virginia, even from eastern Maryland, to middle Georgia
the case of democracy seemed doomed. John Randolph had denounced it as a
monstrous "tyranny of King Numbers"; Judge Gaston, one of the purest and
best men of North Carolina, declared that the cry, "let the people
rule," was fallacious, and asked with great concern, "What is then to
become of our system of checks and balances?" While the radical
spokesmen of the South Carolina aristocracy declared that they would
never submit to that "dangerous principle of majority rule."

The growth of the cotton industry between 1800 and 1830 had done much to
retard the growth of democracy, so urgently advocated by Jefferson;
while the interests of the cotton planters and the fears of the tobacco
growers had served to "swing the leaders" of the aristocratic South into
the Jackson columns. Though the price of raw cotton had declined from
forty-four cents per pound in the former year to ten cents in the
latter, the annual increase in the value of the total output between
1820 and 1830 was $1,000,000 and from 1830 to 1840 the value of this
staple crop increased from $29,000,000 to $63,000,000, while all other
items of the national export amounted only to $50,000,000 per year.
Cotton was grown in a comparatively narrow belt of country extending
from lower North Carolina to the Red River counties of Louisiana and
Arkansas, with a total population in 1830 of little more than 1,500,000
people, of whom 500,000 were negro slaves. Yet their annual output was
worth in 1830, $29,000,000 and in 1840, $63,000,000.

In the older South the tobacco crop was not appreciably greater in 1830
than it had been in 1800, though in the succeeding decade the value of
the annual harvest rose from $5,000,000 to $9,000,000, and the
manufacturing of tobacco became an important industry in many
localities. Rice culture was at a standstill during these years, and
sugar was only making a beginning; but the total of these staples,
including cotton, reaches almost to two thirds of the national exports.
The annual _per capita_ income of the lower South ranged during the
Jacksonian era from thirty to forty dollars, while that of the older
Southern States like Virginia and Maryland was not half so great, and
the average for the country as a whole fell much below that of the
South. There was thus a marked contrast between the fortune of the
average Middle States man and that of the cotton planters.

The result was an extraordinary movement southwestward, especially from
the older South and Kentucky, where population was almost stationary
during a period of twenty years. In Virginia good lands sold for less
than the cost of the buildings on them. Jefferson's home, Monticello,
including two hundred acres of land, sold at public auction in 1829 for
$2500. Each autumn saw thousands of masters with their families and
slaves take up the march over the up-country road through Danville,
Virginia, and Charlotte, North Carolina, to Georgia and Alabama, or over
the mountains to the valley of Virginia, whence they followed the great
highland trough southwestward to the Tennessee and Tombigbee Valleys.
The population of Alabama alone increased from 300,000 in 1830 to
600,000 ten years later. Unimproved lands in the cotton country sold at
prices ranging from $2 to $100 per acre, and plantations spread rapidly
over the better parts of the lower South. Men could afford to give away
or abandon their homes in the old South in order to establish
plantations in the Gulf States, for in ten years thrifty men became
rich, as riches went in those days. The cotton country was a magnet
which drew upon the Middle and Atlantic States for their best citizens
during a period of twenty years.

While the Jackson leadership "captured" both the conservatives of
Virginia and the Carolinas and the radicals of the Gulf region, the
cause of democracy made great gains in the Middle States. Half of
Maryland favored Jackson, and strangely enough the conservative half.
Pennsylvania, the head and front of popular government since the days of
Benjamin Franklin, gave every evidence of joining the standard of
Jackson early in the contest. New York had held a constitutional
convention in 1821 and opened the way for universal suffrage and the
popular election of most state and county officers. So radical had been
the sweep of reform that Chancellor Kent and other conservatives spent
their energies in protest and prophecy of dire results to come. But it
was probably the work of Van Buren, a conservative "boss" of New York,
and of Samuel D. Ingham, a wealthy manufacturer of Pennsylvania and an
ally of Calhoun, that made sure the votes of these great States; for men
of the old Federalist party and extreme protectionists of both New York
and Pennsylvania ranged themselves behind Jackson and his Western

If we turn now to the chances of Clay and Adams, we must look to a part
of Maryland, to Delaware and New Jersey evenly divided, it seems,
between the "forward and the backward-looking" men, and to New England.
Connecticut abandoned her State Church in 1818 and extended the
electoral franchise to all who enrolled in the militia. Vermont, New
Hampshire, and Maine were border States and distinctly Western in their
ideals, though they were in no way inclined to desert the New England
leader. Massachusetts, the great State of the East, held firmly to her
conservative moorings. In the constitutional convention of 1820 the
liberals had failed at every point. Webster and Story had defeated the
proposition for abolishing the property qualification for membership in
the State Senate; and the more radical plan for overthrowing the
established Congregational Church, the bulwark of steady habits in
Massachusetts, was similarly voted down. Webster, like Randolph, of
Virginia, and Rhett, of South Carolina, urged that property should rule
in every well-ordered community, and what Webster, Randolph, and Rhett
urged, their respective States adopted. Even more reactionary was little
Rhode Island, where privilege and inequality were as firmly intrenched
as anywhere else in the country. The suffrage was limited to freeholders
and representation was denied the majority of the people. The control of
governor, legislature, and courts was in the hands of the minority. In
1821, 1822, and 1824 leaders of the majority endeavored to secure
reforms, but without success.

From Augusta, Maine, to Baltimore stretched the long strip of country
which could be relied on to vote for John Quincy Adams and to sustain
conservative ideals in government. Western New York was also inclined to
Adams, and Clay was confident that he could carry Ohio and Kentucky, the
conservative communities of the West, for his ally. In the main the men
who supported the Administration were those who feared the rough ways of
plain men, the ideals of equality and popular initiative so dear to the
American heart.

The managers of Jackson's campaign were members of the United States
Senate. Calhoun sat in the Vice-President's chair; Van Buren was the
leader of the Middle States group of the opposition; John Randolph was
there and ever ready to turn his wonderful gifts of ridicule and sarcasm
against the Puritan who sat in the "Mansion" and "wasted the money of
the people"; Nathaniel Macon, one of the most popular of all the
Senators, opposed the second Adams as earnestly as he had fought the
first; George Poindexter, of Mississippi, was one of the most powerful
politicians of the cotton kingdom, and he showed a never-failing
hostility to "Clay and his President"; but Thomas H. Benton, of
Missouri, was the most effective, perhaps, of all these men who were
bent on the overthrow of Adams and Clay.

They kept the "bargain and sale" charge alive till the very day of the
election. Benton urged on every possible occasion the adoption of
constitutional amendments forbidding the President to appoint members of
Congress to office, restricting the presidential term to four years
without possibility of reëlection, and limiting the powers and
jurisdiction of the Supreme Court. He also kept the Western squatters on
the public lands closely attached to him by promising that if he ever
came to power their rights to the farms they had taken without leave
should be confirmed by law. Nor did he forget to denounce Adams for
"wantonly giving away Texas" in the negotiations with Spain in 1819.
Every movement of the Government was combated at every point and
defeated if possible. Van Buren, Calhoun, and Benton were an able trio,
and they resorted for four years to every possible device to discredit
the President and his Secretary of State and at the same time to secure
the election of Andrew Jackson.

Duff Green, of Missouri, was brought to Washington to establish and edit
_The Telegraph_, the organ of the opposition which began operations in
1826. It gave currency to the campaign literature and educated the
people in the cause of the West. Adams was an aristocrat; he lived
sumptuously every day at the public expense; he did not associate with
the people; and he aped the courts of Europe, where he had spent so much
of his life. The people of the South and West reached the point where
they could believe anything against John Quincy Adams. No other
President of the United States has ever been so shamefully treated, save
one, and that one was Martin Van Buren, the man who was leading the
onslaughts of 1828.

Adams and Clay were helpless; it was difficult for them to secure
popular allies or get a fair hearing. Richard Rush, the son of the
Jeffersonian radical of 1800, was made candidate for the Vice-Presidency
in the hope of winning Pennsylvania; Clay did his utmost to stem the
tide in the West; Daniel Webster was, of course, on the side of Adams;
William Wirt and James Barbour stood up bravely in Virginia for a doomed
cause. But these earnest and patriotic men could not rally the normal
strength of the conservatives, for the Southern planters had accepted
Jackson and the Middle States conservatives were demoralized by the Van
Buren and Ingham activity.

The rough backwoods General had proved a politician too astute for the
oldest heads. He had been able to enlist the services of Northern men
who did not believe in democracy, and he had the loyal support of
Southern leaders who were just then breaking down the power of democracy
in all the older States of their section. He was not less fortunate in
the expression of his opinions on public questions. On the tariff, the
burning question of the time, he had no views; on internal improvements
he had even less to say. Even on the subject of the free distribution of
the public lands he was silent, though most Westerners took his
hostility to the Indians to mean that he would do what was desired.
Jackson was "all things to all men" in 1828, and this discreet attitude
seems to have been effective, though it was to bring trouble when he
became President.

When the vote was counted, it was found that the people had been aroused
as they had not been before since 1800. The cry, "Shall the people
rule?" was answered by Pennsylvania by a vote for Jackson of 100,000 as
against 50,000 for Adams. Virginia gave Jackson as many votes in 1828 as
had been cast for all parties in 1824. And the total vote of the country
for Jackson was 647,276 as against 508,064 for Adams. The General had
won every electoral vote of the South and the West; and both
Pennsylvania and New York had sustained him. New England was solid for
her candidate, and New Jersey, Delaware, and Maryland returned Adams
majorities. The lines were drawn, as had been foreseen, just as in the
contest between Jefferson and John Adams twenty-eight years before; and
in general the attitudes of the social classes were the same.

[Illustration: The Presidential Election of 1828]

The second alliance of South and West had been effected, and "the
people" had come to power a second time, only the West was now the
dominant element. How would the West and "the people" use their power?


J. S. Bassett's _Life of Andrew Jackson_ (1911) is the best work on that
subject, though James Parton's _Life of Jackson_ (ed. of 1887) is still
the best for a documentary account. The biographies of Henry Clay and
John Quincy Adams in the _American Statesmen_ series are the best for
these men. Of more importance for a view of social and political
conditions of the South and the East are: the _Debates_ of the
constitutional conventions of Massachusetts (1820), New York (1821),
Virginia (1829), and North Carolina (1835), and _The Memoir of John
Quincy Adams_, in twelve large volumes, which covers minutely the period
of 1825 to 1848. This work appeared in 1874-76. It is a remarkable
record of a remarkable man. J. B. McMaster's _History of the United
States_ (1900-13) is a life of the people which no library can afford to
be without, and J. Schouler's _History of the United States under the
Constitution_ (revised ed. 1894-99) is equally good, giving a fuller
account of the political and constitutional development of the country.
A. B. Hart's _The American Nation_ (1904-08) is a fuller coöperative
work by the leading scholars of the United States. The volumes which
bear upon the period in hand will be cited in succeeding chapters.
Special studies of importance are: C. H. Ambler's _Sectionalism in
Virginia_ (1910); D. F. Houston's _Critical Study of Nullification in
South Carolina_ (1896); W. A. Schaper's _Sectionalism in South Carolina_
(1900); and H. M. Wagstaff's _States Rights and Political Parties in
North Carolina_ (1906).

                                  CHAPTER II

                                   THE WEST

Tens of thousands of eager people witnessed the inauguration of Andrew
Jackson on March 4, 1829; they crowded the streets, stood upon the
house-tops, and peered out from every open window; they jostled the
attendants at the White House and overturned the bowls and jars which
contained the ices and wines intended for the entertainment of the new
President and his friends. "The people have come to power," said a
chastened admirer of Henry Clay as she watched sadly the wreckage of the
dainties which dainty hands had prepared, and as she looked with dismay
upon the wearers of rough and dirty boots striding over costly carpets
where hitherto only gentlemen and ladies had trod. It was a happy
occasion to the unthinking but honest democrats[2] who gloried in the
success of their "hero," but a sad warning to the more refined who had
been accustomed to see things done in due form and stateliness.

[Footnote 2: This term is used to indicate those who believed in
democracy, not those who called themselves Democrats. The distinction
will be observed throughout the book.]

But neither the uninformed masses who looked on with delight that bright
day nor the cultured people whose hearts sank within them as they saw
the old order pass away recked aught of what was to come during the next
four years. Possibly the old man, whom everybody called "the General,"
and who many feared could not live out his term, or the solemn-visaged
Vice-President, who had been filling half the cabinet positions with his
own partisans, saw dimly what was to follow these joyous opening days of
a new régime, for he knew how unstable was the base upon which the new
structure rested.

The people who composed this new régime, the men who voted for Andrew
Jackson and who shouted at and derided sturdy John Quincy Adams as he
retired from the Presidency that 4th of March, were the rank and file of
the United States. But the nucleus of the party of Jackson was the West.
In the region which extends from Georgia to the Sabine, save in New
Orleans alone, no name equaled that of the man who had driven the
Indians like chaff before the wind at the battle of Horseshoe Bend, and
who a year later had defeated the regiments of Great Britain near New
Orleans. "The General" was known and admired all over the great valley
of the Mississippi as the friend of the people, while John Quincy Adams
had resisted the demands of the frontier and had actually sent a
regiment of the United States Army into Georgia to defeat the purposes
of a popular governor, who was driving the hated Indians from coveted
cotton lands. Jackson met, therefore, with little or no opposition in
this region, and the Southwestern politicians who had fought for Adams
and Clay in the campaign of 1828 had signed their political

In the older West, Tennessee, Kentucky, Missouri, and Ohio, Henry Clay
had been the natural leader; and until about 1820, when he had
championed the cause of the National Bank as against local interests and
local banks, he had been the most popular man west of the Alleghanies.
From the beginning of the Adams Administration he had lost steadily till
in 1828 he tasted for the first time the gall of political defeat. In
these older Western communities it was still a reproach to a public man
to ally himself with New England and the United States Bank, though he
might favor the protective tariff, and he must support internal
improvements. In addition to supporting John Quincy Adams after 1825,
Clay led a "fast and extravagant" life in Washington, which only added
to his unpopularity in the West. In 1831 it was with much difficulty,
and after a close contest with Richard M. Johnson, that he was returned
to the United States Senate. General Jackson had completely won the
leadership of the Clay territory and the affections of the plain

In the Northwest there were other large areas of fertile lands in the
possession of the hated Indians, and there, as in the Southwest, the
most popular leader was he who believed and taught that the quickest way
to build up the country was to take immediate possession of these lands.
In Michigan, Indiana, and Illinois the small farmers and the pioneers
were almost as enthusiastic followers of Jackson as were their economic
kinsmen of the Gulf region.

With these backwoods States thus devoted to the man to whom Chief
Justice Marshall had sorrowfully administered the oath of office, it was
easy for the leaders of the new régime to make strong appeal to the
mountain counties of the Middle States and South, whose political idol
had been Thomas Jefferson and whose people were only a generation
removed from the pioneer stage of development. With the exception of
some of the New England _émigrés_ of western New York, the peasant
proprietors of all the up-country counties of the Middle States gave
Jackson their allegiance; while south of Maryland, except in a few
counties of western Virginia, almost every man in the hill country was a
stanch defender of the first Western President. Thus in the West and in
the interior of the States which bordered upon the Alleghany Mountains,
Jackson had a great compact following which for years to come was to
give him the advantage over all his opponents.

The radical and enthusiastic wing of the new party was the Southwest,
closely followed by the Northwest; the older West and the up-country of
the Middle States and South composed the "solid" element; while the
low-country men, the planters of Virginia and the Carolinas, regarded
askance the democratic leader whom they had reluctantly helped to the
Presidency. Of real organization and party discipline there was little,
and the beliefs and principles of the various groups of the party were
sometimes antagonistic. On one thing only were most of these men united:
on the necessity of keeping New England out of the control of the
Government. Surely any one who knew the actual conditions of 1829, the
ambitions and the smouldering animosities of the Jackson lieutenants,
must have faced the future with more than ordinary doubt and anxiety.

But the people who shouted at the inauguration and who had voted "the
ticket" the preceding November did not know the feelings of their
leaders. They thought that this country was a democracy and that a
majority of the electorate was entitled to rule. Their ideals were those
of the Declaration of Independence, which were not very popular in New
England, and which were just then being repudiated in the planter
sections of the South. They lived the lives of simple farmers and daily
practiced the doctrine of social equality, and hence they could not
understand why others should not do the same, or why there should be
anything difficult or complex in the work of the incoming President.

In all the Western States almost every office was filled by popular
election. Legislatures met annually and unpopular men or measures could
be promptly recalled, to employ a modern term. Even the judges of the
courts were subject to frequent election and were quite attentive to
popular opinion; while United States Senators must canvass for votes in
ardent campaigns which strongly resembled the primary contests of the
South and West to-day. But this democracy of the larger section of the
country which supported Jackson was counterbalanced by the prestige and
experience of its allies of the South, where, by reason of the
three-fifths rule of representation for the slaves, which gave the
master of slaves a privileged position, and of long political habit, a
few planters exercised power out of all proportion to their numbers.

Still the history of the country after 1812 indicated that the Western
voters and not the Eastern leaders would control the Government while
Jackson was President. These voters were nationalists and their position
made them look to the Federal Government for better roads and improved
markets; they were expansionists who not only coveted the lands of the
Indians, but wanted also to seize the territory of their neighbors. They
were already taking possession of Texas, and Thomas H. Benton and Lewis
Cass, of Michigan, their most popular leaders after Jackson, were
already the exponents of an early imperialism which would never rest
until the shores of the Pacific became the western frontier of the
United States. In every State that bordered on the Mississippi this
sentiment was ardent, and many good men were ready to make war upon
Mexico for Texas or upon England for Oregon, whose boundaries no one
knew and whose title had been held jointly by the United States and
Great Britain since 1818.

Moreover, the Western men occupied a peculiar position in the country
because of the fact that a large number of them had bought their lands
from the Federal Government on easy terms, at two dollars or even a
dollar and a quarter an acre, and were still in debt for them to the
Government or the banks or other creditors. This indebtedness still
further stimulated their restlessness of character. The land laws of the
United States were apparently liberal, but unless the settler could
obtain land near a navigable stream, it was a most difficult matter to
buy even a quarter section and make the improvements necessary to
successful farming. And since all the river area had long since been
occupied, the Westerners of 1830 had bought their land in the remote
districts and begun the hard struggle of "paying out." The distance to
markets made this an almost hopeless task, and the holders of the
frontier farms came to think their lot a peculiarly hard one. They
resisted always; and in hard years, after driving a herd of cattle or a
drove of hogs to the distant market and receiving therefor barely the
cost of production, they were angry and resentful.

[Illustration: Distribution of Indians and Location of Indian Lands and
Unorganized Territory of the United States or the States]

The frontier remedy for these ills was an "easier" currency or high
prices for commodities, or stay laws against creditors who pressed for
their money. And since a great number of the Western farmers had simply
taken up their lands, before they were thrown open to sale, and made
improvements on them without procuring titles, they feared the
enforcement of the federal law against them and clamored for a
preëmption system which would secure them their land, when the day of
sales did come, at the minimum price, $1.25 per acre. A still better
plan was already strongly urged, the free gift of small tracts of land
to all who would go West and build homes. Not only would this be good
for the home-seeker, but it would result in the rapid upbuilding of the
great wastes of the country. Animated by such purposes as these, Benton
and his colleagues in Congress were constantly gaining strength as their
constituents increased in number.

Thus the restless but devoted followers of Jackson were developing a
program: the removal of the Indians in order that more cotton and corn
might be grown; the seizure of the territory contiguous to the western
frontier, even at the cost of war with Mexico and England; the giving of
free homesteads to all who would go West and join in the upbuilding of
the Mississippi Commonwealths; and the improvement of roadways at
national expense in order that Western products might find better
markets. These were the things which the Westerners ardently desired and
which it was hoped the new President would be able to obtain for them.
Incidentally, he was expected to set up the rule of the people in the
national capital, and to substitute a more simple life and etiquette for
the formal and fashionable manners which had come into vogue with Monroe
and his Cabinet.

The strength of the Western people was great, and to the East it
appeared ominous. They numbered in 1830 nearly 4,000,000 souls as
compared with 12,500,000 for the country as a whole, and their increase
in the preceding decade had run from 22 per cent in Kentucky to 185 per
cent in Illinois. In the National House of Representatives the West cast
47 votes in a total of 213; in the Senate their strength was 18 in a
total of 48. But this does not fairly represent their influence. In
western New York, Pennsylvania, and Virginia there were more than a
million people who counted themselves Westerners, while in the Carolinas
and Georgia a majority, or more than another half-million, must be
reckoned as adherents of the cause of the "Trans-alleghany." Thus about
6,000,000 of the total 12,500,000 were Western in character and ideals,
to say nothing of the large frontier element in New England.

In economic strength, however, these Jackson States and communities were
much weaker. They were isolated. Their surplus crops had no value save
as they were produced within reach of navigable rivers. Of these the
5,500,000 people living in the region drained by the Mississippi and the
other streams which fall into the Gulf of Mexico, exported about
$17,800,000 worth of commodities in 1830, a _per capita_ value of less
than $4. And most of this surplus output came from the cotton counties
of the lower South, where only a small proportion of the population of
the West dwelt. Still, the herds of cattle and droves of swine that were
driven southward to the cotton communities or over the mountains to
Eastern cities, and the large quantities of grain which, after 1825,
found its way to market through the Erie Canal, added greatly to and
perhaps doubled the income of the West from exports down the
Mississippi. When all is told, however, these isolated people were in
the main very poor, as the narratives of travelers and the journals of
preachers attest on every page.

Yet every year added thousands to the numbers of Eastern men who
migrated West to enjoy some of the liberty of a region where lands were
cheap and the social life unconventional; every decade added new voices
and able leaders to the Western group in Congress, who clamored
unceasingly for the enactment of laws aimed at the rapid development of
that section. New England, where the rise of industrial towns
necessitated an increasing number of laborers, took fright, or had never
ceased to be alarmed, at the westward movement of population; and
Eastern members of Congress, under one pretext or another, opposed every
demand which came up from the West, every petition of the "squatters" on
the public domain. In the Middle States the building of numerous
canals, turnpikes, and railways called for both skilled and unskilled
laborers. But if everybody ran off to the West when wages were
unsatisfactory, these improvements could not be made and the old
communities would languish and decay.

Virginia and the South were less disturbed at the growth of the West,
because of their system of slavery, and because the votes of the new
States could be relied on to support Virginian and Southern policies in
Congress--a legacy of the old Jeffersonian alliance of the South with
the early West; and also because of the similar economic and social life
of the two sections. But even the Old Dominion in the sore economic
distress of the late twenties, due in the main to the desertion of her
tobacco-fields and workshops by thousands of her most energetic sons,
who went to the rich cotton country, wavered in her loyalty to the
younger States of the West. John Randolph ridiculed in merciless fashion
the "sharp-witted" Westerners, whom he would avoid in the highway as
"one would a pickpocket"; and in both the Carolinas there was a fear and
a dread of the growing West, whose ideals were too Jeffersonian and
whose power waxed greater with the passing years. Yet Calhoun, Hayne,
and other able Southerners remained true to the new region and supported
Benton in his debates with Foote and Webster in 1830, perhaps because
the whole Jackson program of 1829 was based upon the alliance of these
forces in the national life.

If the political plans of the Western men of 1830 were ambitious and
far-reaching, the lives of the shrewd pioneers were simple, hard, and
narrow. The men wore coats when the weather was cold, and found shoes
more of a nuisance than a comfort during half the year; and the women
rejoiced if they received a "store" bonnet once in two years. Wants were
few and the annual _per capita_ expense beyond what was produced at home
was seldom as great as $10. Peter Cartwright counted himself rich when
he learned that the Methodist annual conference to which he belonged had
added $12 to his regular stipend of $100 a year.

Most men, including the clergy, owned or rented farms and followed the
plow in season, while wives and children did outdoor work from morning
till night. Houses were built by the aid of neighbors in a single day,
and extra rooms were improvised by the judicious hanging of quilts and
curtains. A door in front and another in the rear allowed plenty of
fresh air, though the large crevices between the logs usually rendered
this superfluous. Floors were made of logs split in halves and laid
"with backs downward." Beds and chairs were home-made and especially
intended for the use of the older members of the family, boys and girls
accommodating themselves with stools or blocks of wood sawed for the
purpose. Meals were prepared in a few moments at the broad fireside,
where a huge crane aided the mother in swinging her kettles on or off
the blazing fire. In every pretentious home there was a loom for the
weaving of cotton and woolen cloth for family or neighborhood
consumption; and late at night the steady thump of the beam proclaimed
the industry of the busy housewife as she put in the last threads of her
"fifth" or "sixth yard." Few were so wealthy that they could afford the
broadcloth which came up the rivers from New Orleans or over the Erie
Canal from New York; and when some migrating Virginia squire or Kentucky
colonel, master of a thousand acres of land, did so disport himself on
Sundays or at the races, he appeared in his glossy suit, made by the
hand of his devoted spouse, wrinkled and fretted in a hundred places,
not unlike Lincoln when he first spoke at Cooper Institute, New York.

Life was simple on the Western farm or distant frontier, but pleasure,
too, had its place, English sports of Angevin times serving the place of
baseball or golf of to-day. In the older West, Kentucky, Tennessee, and
Missouri, the race-course was the common playground where horses and men
ran their rounds and won their prizes. To drink deeply of the strong
"corn" or "rye" was as common as is the drinking of wine in France; and
races, corn-huskings, or weddings were seldom closed without
drunkenness, and oftentimes fisticuffs or the more fatal duel with knife
or pistol. Jackson had "killed his man," and Benton had been knocked
through a trapdoor into the basement of a Nashville bar-room; Clay and
Poindexter, the Mississippi Governor and Senator, had had more than one
encounter in which life was set against life.

If men held human life cheap, they held woman's honor more than dear,
and to give currency to a tale of slander was tantamount to half a dozen
challenges. Women were in the minority in the West, and although they
did not vote, they were still of utmost importance in homes where
clothing was handmade and the needs of numerous children increased
daily. Henry Clay was one of thirteen or fourteen brothers and sisters,
while Thomas Marshall, the father of the Chief Justice, carried ten or
twelve children with him to his Western home about the year 1781. But
the sorrows of the pioneer women and the waste of human material were
extraordinary. In those days of hardship and ignorance of the most
rudimentary rules of sanitation, few knew how to save their children
from death due to the simplest diseases, and the student to-day reads
the sad story in the many tiny tombstones of the old family cemeteries,
knowing well that the great majority rest in unmarked graves. Many were
born and many died without a fair chance at normal existence.

Western men were seldom members of organized churches, though the fear
of the Deity, natural to those who witnessed the great "freshets" and
the storms and cyclones which swept over the plains, carrying entire
villages with them or cutting wide swaths through the primeval forests,
was a powerful influence upon everyday conduct. Presbyterians, Baptists,
and Methodists, with their strict and hard Calvinism, penetrated first
the wilderness beyond the mountains and built their rude log churches,
in which stern preachers, like Samuel Doak, of Tennessee, or Jonathan
Going, of Ohio, warned men against the wrath to come and the fiery
furnace below, whose surging flames were ever ready to swallow up and
consume stiff-necked, yet never-dying sinners. The simple and
superstitious minds of the neglected West flocked to these little
churches or to great camps where revivalists, like James McCreary, of
Kentucky, or the later Bishop Soule, of Ohio, preached for weeks in
succession and seemed to work miracles hardly less wonderful than those
of New Testament times. Hundreds were "stricken" on a single day and
were later gathered into the church clothed and in their right minds.
Before 1830 the greater denominations of the East and South realized the
importance of the West as a semi-destitute land to which missionaries
should be sent, though by this time the churches of the older border and
of most of the great valley were self-supporting and the population
could no longer complain that the Gospel had never been preached to

While the civilizing hand of the churches was being spread over the
West, schools and colleges were built and opened to students. The
liberal land grants of the Federal Government were made to serve the
cause of common schools, while institutions of higher learning
flourished at Lexington, Natchez, Granville (Ohio), and Hanover
(Indiana),--schools where many of the statesmen of the Civil War period
were trained and where preachers prepared themselves for their strenuous
labors in a poor country. The civilizing forces of religion and
education were rapidly leavening the lump of hard Western life and
preparing it for the great days and the awful struggle that were so soon
to come. Books found their way into the Athens of the West, as Lexington
was called, and gradually, under the fostering care of Henry Clay, the
Mechanics' Library came to play an important part. St. Louis, too,
boasted of its Mercantile Library; and there were numerous other
collections of religious writings, history, and the English poets,
mostly in private hands like those of John M. Peck, of Illinois.
Newspapers, such as the _Republican_ of St. Louis, the Maysville
_Eagle_, or the Louisville _Advertiser_, carried their weekly or
semi-weekly burden of neighborhood gossip and political news to near-by
villages and distant settlements.

The roads were also improving and steadily expanding the area of
productive farming, though all, or nearly all, led to the river ports or
the old fort towns like La Porte, Indiana, or Detroit and Cleveland on
the Lakes. The Erie and the Ohio Canals were already turning exports and
communication northeastward, while the Lake steamers were adding their
share to the development of the Western frontier; but the great river
steamers, the City of New Orleans and the Crescent, which the preachers
compared to ancient Babylon, as centers of vice and lewd fashion, were
the marvels of the West, and they carried the burden of grain, tobacco,
and cotton which crowded the wharves of New Orleans. Cincinnati was the
pork-packing and manufacturing center of the West, sending its salted
meats and farm implements to the plantations of the lower South in
ever-increasing volume. St. Louis was the home of the most important
commercial monopoly of the time, the American Fur Company, which had an
undue influence in national politics, and of which John Jacob Astor was
the millionaire head, to whom all Americans looked up as one of the
great figures of his generation. From the old half-French, half-American
town caravans of explorers, trappers, and traders set out each spring
for the Far Northwest, whence they returned annually with their loads of
furs and their tales of the wonderful Oregon country. But New Orleans,
with its population of 50,000, its European life and rather easy morals,
its slave marts and miles of cotton wharves, was the wonder of the world
to Western eyes like those of young Abraham Lincoln, who visited the
city about this time. There, rich men lived in splendid mansions, served
by scores of negro slaves; there, great newspapers were published and
shrewd speculators from all parts of the world bought cotton and
imported luxuries for the newly rich of the Southwest.

It was this great West, pulsating with life and vigor, filled with hope
for the future, restless and eager, at once democratic and
imperialistic, which put the resolute and dictatorial Andrew Jackson in
the President's chair in 1829. And never was constituency more truly
represented than was that of the West in the wiry old man whom they
called "Old Hickory." Accustomed to the hardships of the poor in his
youth and to the responsibility of the well-to-do merchant and cotton
planter in middle life, he had experienced most that was common to his
fellows and had gained a prestige which in their admiring eyes surpassed
that of all other men since Thomas Jefferson. Brave and generous,
plain-spoken and sometimes boisterous, he embodied most of the
qualities that compelled admiration throughout the Mississippi Valley.
No matter what Webster or Calhoun or even Clay said of "Old Hickory," it
was not believed in the back-country until the President himself had
confirmed the story. Jackson was the second American President who so
understood "his people" that he could interpret them and by intuition
scent the course the popular mind would take--particularly in the West.

To be sure, there were small groups of Westerners who opposed him and
whom he did not represent: some of the counties of Ohio, a part of the
Blue-Grass region of Kentucky, and a narrow strip of Mississippi which
lay in the southwestern part of the State, and finally the French and
mercantile elements of New Orleans; but these were never strong enough
to deprive him of any object at which he aimed. It was well-nigh "King
Andrew I," as some Eastern papers were accustomed to term him in a weak
attempt at ridicule.

Thus appeared the new régime in 1829, in so far as its Western majority
and base of support were concerned. How the conservative East, with its
serious doubts about democracy, and the older Southern leaders, uneasy
lest slavery should be undermined, would find themselves in the new
system is a problem which our next chapters must seek to disclose.


F. J. Turner's _The Rise of the New West_ (1906) is the best brief
account of social and economic conditions in the United States just
prior to 1830. J. B. McMaster's _History of the United States_, vol.
_IV_, chap. _XXXIII_, and vol. _V_, chap. _XLV_; T. H. Clay's _Henry
Clay_, in _American Crises_ biographies, Theodore Roosevelt's _Life of
Thomas H. Benton_, in _American Statesmen_ series, and Bassett's _Life
of Andrew Jackson_, already cited, give the principal facts about their
subjects. T. Flint's _History and Geography of the Mississippi Valley_
(1832); J. Hall's _Letters from the West_ (1828) and _Statistics of the
West_ (1836); early numbers of the _American Almanacs_; Peter
Cartwright's _The Backwoods Preacher_ (1860); Alfred Brunson's _A
Western Pioneer_ (1858); and the various denominational histories supply
the needful social background for an understanding of the West. Margaret
Bayard Smith's _The First Forty Years of Washington Society_ (edited by
Gaillard Hunt, 1906) and K. W. Colgrove's _Attitude of Congress toward
the Pioneers of the West_, in _Iowa Journal of History and Politics_
(1910), give good reports of Eastern opinion of the West. And _American
State Papers_, on _Public Lands_ and _Indian Affairs_, are excellent for
treatment of land and Indian problems.

                                  CHAPTER III

                                    THE EAST

When the West under the guidance and tutelage of Jackson, Calhoun, and
Benton took possession of the national administration in 1829, the older
and more cultured elements and classes of the East trembled for their
country and for the institutions they held dear. The day was dark to
John Quincy Adams and his followers, not only because they had been
deprived of power, but because the rural sections of the East, the towns
and villages which had been active and prosperous from 1783 to 1807,
showed almost as many signs of stagnation and premature decay as did the
Old Dominion, where public men were in a state of alarm and dismay. For
fifteen years the highways of New York and Pennsylvania had borne their
burden of New England emigrants, laden with their meager belongings, as
they journeyed westward to the Mohawk country, western Pennsylvania,
Ohio, and other rising communities of the West. Between 1820 and 1830
the population of New England as a whole increased but slightly, while
in many counties of New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Connecticut there
was an actual decline. Ambitious young men or discouraged heads of
families moved northeastward to the freer lands of Maine or to the Far
West, without seeming love for the older haunts or thought for the
fortunes of the Commonwealths which had given them birth. And New York,
whose population increased from 1,400,000 in 1820 to 2,400,000 in 1840,
drew heavily upon her eastern neighbors; Pennsylvania, of more steady
habits, drew less from New England than her immediate neighbors, though
both New York and Pennsylvania gave freely to the West. There was thus a
steady drift of the people from their Eastern homes to the better
opportunities of the Middle States, while from these, in turn, large
numbers joined the more courageous who were never content until they
built their cabins along the river borders or on the prairies of the

The total population of the country in 1830 was nearly 13,000,000, while
that of the East, including New England, the Middle States, and
Maryland, was a little more than 6,000,000. Between 1820 and 1840 the
population of the country increased from 9,654,000 to 17,669,000; that
of the East increased from 4,850,000 to 7,350,000, of which 650,000 had
come from Europe. This represented a growth of only fifty per cent in
twenty years. But the rival South, as a whole, and this includes
Kentucky and Missouri, had increased her population during the same
period from 4,009,000 to 7,748,000, a growth of ninety per cent; while
the West, as a whole, including Tennessee, Kentucky, and Missouri, had
grown from less than 1,000,000 to nearly 4,000,000. These facts were
significant and really distressing to conservative politicians; they
explain the jealous rivalry of the sections, and the alliance of the
South and West foreboded the day when the more cultivated and the
better settled region of the young nation, if it may be called a nation,
would find itself in a hopeless minority.

If we add to this the fact that the lands of the East were the poorest
in the Union and that their total area was less than 175,000 square
miles, while those of the South were counted rich and embraced an area
of 880,000 square miles, we shall understand how statesmen who listened
to the jubilations of the Jackson men felt and envisaged the future--a
future which the South alone might command; but which she would
certainly dominate if she could only succeed in keeping the West true to
her present allegiance.

But economic and social changes were taking place which gave the
darkening cloud a silver lining. On an irregular but narrow belt of land
stretching from southeastern Maine to the Chesapeake Bay manufacturing
establishments had been erected, towns and cities had sprung into
existence as if by magic, and migration from the poor farms and the hard
conditions of New England country life was also turning to the mill
centers, and thus giving promise of a new East, whose life should be
industrial and urban like that of smoky, grimy Lancashire, England. The
older commercial and seafaring interests, which had given the
Federalists their power and made the American flag known on every sea,
were now giving way to the vigorous young captains of industry whose
mills at Lowell, Providence, New Haven, New York, Philadelphia, and
Baltimore gave employment to thousands of people. Much of the money
which had made the New Englanders go down to the sea in ships was now
invested in manufactures. The woolen mills of the East produced in 1820
a little more than $4,000,000 worth of cloth, the cotton mills,
$4,834,000; but in 1830 the yearly manufactures of wool, cotton, and
iron were estimated by the Government as worth $58,500,000. Yet the
total investment in these enterprises was not much in excess of
$100,000,000. In Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, and Pennsylvania
the growth had been miraculous, and the profits were enormous, if we
except one or two years for the woolen interests.

So that while the total annual crop value of Southern plantations
amounted to $40,000,000, and the _per capita_ wealth of the white people
of the so-called black belt was very large, the returns from three
industries located in a much narrower industrial belt of the East were
more than a third greater. The taxable value of the slaves who produced
most of the cotton and tobacco was not less than $1,000,000,000; the
total investments of the East in manufactures of all kinds was certainly
not more than a fourth as great as that in slaves. And what made this
development the more significant was the fact that nearly all that the
black belt produced was sold in Europe, while nearly all that the
industrial belt produced was sold to the people of the United States,
mostly to States which were not engaged in manufacturing at all.

A portentous revolution was taking place. Before 1820 nearly all the
wool of the country had been made into cloth by hand in the homes of the
people, and the ratio of home manufactures to population was about the
same in most of the States. Now the sheep-raisers sold their wool to
the mill men, who sold the country the finished product and whose
factories were concentrated in a small district. The cotton mills had
been a negligible economic factor in 1812; now their owners employed a
capital of $30,000,000 to $35,000,000 and supplied work for 70,000
laborers. From the farms of the interior, where life was in the open,
the poorer and less ambitious elements of the population, who were not
attracted to the West, were drawn to the growing industrial towns, where
they lived, a family in a room, worked twelve to fourteen hours a day,
amidst unsanitary and even immoral surroundings, for wages which ranged
from one dollar to six dollars per week. The cost of living was, to be
sure, correspondingly low; but when the year of toil for men, women, and
children of all ages was told, there was usually an unpaid account at
the company's store, and the chance of bettering one's worldly fortunes
appeared almost hopeless. Emigration to the West was the only escape,
and the difficulties of such an escape, the cost of sustenance for the
long journey, on foot, the greater cost of building a cabin in the
forest and maintaining one's family till a crop could be harvested, and
the necessity of buying the land on which the cabin was to be raised,
made the undertaking heroic. Thus, when the mill life was once begun it
was seldom deserted.

Without educational advantages, save in the most rudimentary way,
without any fair prospect of ever becoming independent or of materially
improving their status, these mill workers kept up the daily round of
labor, earning the millions which were laying the foundations of a new
and greater East, eventually a new United States, and voting, in so far
as they exercised the right of suffrage at all, for the cause of their
masters, against the "slave-drivers" of the South and for protection to
manufactures as a means of defending themselves against their poorer
brethren of Europe. As to their total number, we have no more reliable
estimate than that of McMaster, who says there were not less than two
million operatives in all lines of industry in 1825. Nobody thought of
these people as slaves; and most people thought they must be happy to
escape the dull life of the country, and that fourteen hours' work was a
normal human exercise. A worthless father who lived on the labor of
little children of his own begetting was counted lucky to have children
to work for him; and the girl who entered the primrose path as a
possible way of escape from her hard surroundings was then as now
promptly ruled out of the pale of human sympathy and consigned to the
lake of everlasting fire and brimstone.

Another great interest had grown to immense proportions in the East of
1830--the financial. Beginning with the flush times of Hamilton's
leadership, the financier had grown in power and influence, sometimes
purposely organizing a monopolistic control over the money of the
public, as in the case of the Suffolk Bank of Boston, sometimes
mercilessly robbing depositors, as in the notorious defalcation of the
Derby Bank of Connecticut in 1825, until it had become a serious
national problem not merely to regulate the currency of the country, but
to curb the rapacity of those who, under one pretense or another,
violated the laws of all the States in order to heap up hasty fortunes.
In 1815 there had been 208 banks in the country, mainly in the Middle
States and New England, with a capital of $82,000,000; at the end of the
year 1833 there were 502 banks with a capital of $168,829,000. At the
end of the second war with England, there were $17,000,000 of specie in
the banks; eighteen years later, when the capital had doubled, loans had
greatly increased, and notes in circulation were $61,000,000, there were
still just $17,000,000 of gold and silver in all the banks.

The business of the East naturally tended to the concentration of the
financial resources of the country within her towns, but the location of
414 of the 502 banks of the country in the narrow section under
consideration would seem to indicate something more than a natural
tendency. The six million people of the East enjoyed three times as many
banking facilities, when we consider the amount of money in circulation,
as the seven million Southerners and Westerners. New York alone had a
banking capital of $28,000,000, Massachusetts $21,000,000, and the _per
capita_ circulation of money in the East was nearly $9, while that of
the West was $2. To him that hath shall be given is a familiar axiom
which seemed doubly true of the United States at the time of Jackson's
accession to power.

All signs pointed to a congestion of the financial resources of the
whole country in Philadelphia, New York, and Boston. The great National
Bank, with its $35,000,000 capital and loans of $40,000,000, was
located in Philadelphia; New York City had not so strong a banking
system, but the growth of her real estate values was $40,000,000 in the
five years preceding 1831; and the tax valuation of the property of
Suffolk County, Massachusetts, in which Boston was located, was
$86,000,000 as against $208,000,000 for the whole State.

The masters of this region were reaching out for the commerce of the
West through the Erie Canal, which made northern and central Ohio the
hinterland of New York; through the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad and the
Chesapeake and Ohio Canal, which were aimed at western Virginia and the
Ohio Valley. The shipping interests of New England and New York did the
same for the South, whose millions of bales of cotton all went north or
to Europe in eastern-made and eastern-owned vessels. And while these
enterprising leaders sought to control the commerce of the country, they
also knitted together their own towns and river valleys by canals and
turnpikes. Boston and New Haven were almost united by canals and
railroads in 1830; the Delaware and the Susquehanna were paralleled far
into the interior in order to bring the produce of the country to the
manufacturing centers. And a railway connected Philadelphia with the
rich Susquehanna Basin, whose commerce had hitherto been controlled by
Baltimore. Pittsburg was actually tied to the East before 1835 by water
and railroad routes. Trade, manufactures, and finance; railways, canals,
and home markets were the great subjects of conversation in the East,
just as cotton, slaves, and land formed the trinity of Southern

The men who owned the industrial plants and managed the large banks and
projected the ambitious railway and canal systems, the stockholders and
the officers, the factors and storekeepers, were drawn from the same
sturdy New England and Middle States stock, the small farmers and little
merchants who had composed the democracy which had fought the
Revolution. Retired sea-captains and owners of sailing-vessels joined
the new régime as profits came in and the art of watering stock was
understood. Throughout the East, from Chesapeake Bay to Augusta, Maine,
wherever there were good waterfalls, great brick buildings were rising
story upon story, proclaiming the new prosperity and enticing the hordes
of workers so necessary to the new system. The old-fashioned mansions of
retired traders or prosperous shipbuilders, which had so long adorned
the hills of the coast towns, were giving way to the larger houses of
the captains of industry who built up the inland towns or created the
suburbs of the greater cities.

Like the planters of the South, with their two million slaves, these
able and prosperous makers of a new era in the East had their two
million operatives, and as in the planting districts, the working day
was from sun to sun. Carrying the comparison further, the industrial and
financial region was relatively small, embracing much less of the area
of the country than did that of the black belt.[3]

[Footnote 3: See maps of tobacco and cotton belts on pp. 133, 134.]

From southeastern Maine to Boston, Providence, New Haven, New York City,
and on to Baltimore, with a Western extension to Pittsburg, this
irregular, now widening, now contracting, strip of country extended. It
embraced the strategic positions, the falls of the rivers, the places
whence ships could sail laden with the products of the industries or
return with the raw materials necessary to their operation; it included
the old commercial towns where the surplus capital of the East had been
collected and where now gathered the populations which composed the
districts whose spokesmen exerted the real strength of the North in the
National Congress. It was this articulate East, the growing power of
industry and finance, the promise of greater prosperity to come, which
drew to it, like iron filings to a magnet, the talented and the
ambitious men of the time, just as the black belt was the articulate
part of the South for which men of ability and influence spoke in the
national assemblies which gathered from year to year in Washington.

But the older mercantile and seafaring interests sometimes resisted the
industrial movement and made precarious alliances with the South on the
basis of a national free-trade policy. The great Boston merchants
actually turned to Hayne, of South Carolina, in 1827, to represent them
and their cause in Congress. The Winslows, Goddards, and Lees who thus
appealed to a Southern Senator were representatives of the older order,
of the same declining class in New York and Philadelphia which had in
years past controlled affairs in the East and made alliances with the
aristocratic leaders of the South. In a hopeless minority in their own
States before 1830, they looked to the South for relief, and at least
understood the politics of the planters. Their successors composed the
nucleus of the party of Cushing, Everett, and Winthrop in 1860. It is
difficult for us in our day of great things to understand the industrial
and social revolution of the decade which preceded the inauguration of
the first Western President, and it was difficult for men to make the
transition from the small farmer system of Jefferson's day to the
industrial régime of 1830; many good people were broken in the process,
while whole classes of the population exchanged the life of the open
country for that of the crowded and unsanitary towns, exchanged a rude
and hard independence for a semi-servile subjection.

[Illustration: The Distribution of Industrial Plants in 1833

Miss Maud Hulse drew this map from data in House Documents, 22nd. Cong.,
1st. Sess. No. 303.]

The new Eastern régime readily enlisted the support of the old
professional classes. The clergy and the votaries of the law, always
doing the bidding of the strongest in society, promptly took their
places in the system. When dignitaries of an Eastern town gradually laid
aside their rough farmers' clothes and put on the smooth garbs of
directors of corporations or financial magnates, the legal briefs and
sermons underwent a similar change. Social amenities displaced
Calvinistic theology; dancing, which had been a crime against the
Church, became mere frivolity and finally an innocent pastime. Leading
lawyers ceased to plead in petit courts to inferior magistrates, and
learned to devise forms of contracts, to lobby in legislatures, or
appear with the great Maryland and Virginia practitioners before the
Federal Supreme Court.

The legal profession of the East naturally made common cause with their
clients. The state courts, already accustomed to curb the democracy of
the time and declare public enactments unconstitutional, when the
interests of property required, as readily joined the new standards. The
careers of Justice Parsons of Massachusetts and Chancellor Kent of New
York, to whom all judges and lawyers of the time looked up as sources of
inspiration, illustrate admirably the common tendency. Everywhere in the
East as in the South "independent" judges asserted the power to declare
laws unconstitutional.

The national courts had undergone the same evolution, except that they
had met with violent opposition in the South and West. In many decisions
from 1792 to 1830 the Federal Supreme Court asserted its authority over
Congress, the President, and the States. In almost all of these
instances the federal judges found the heartiest support from the East.
The great institution over which Chief Justice Marshall presided with
such perfect dignity, and which was not paralleled anywhere else in the
world, lent its support to the interests of the East. If the
constitutionality of the tariff were denied by irate planters, Eastern
men pointed to decisions of the Federal Supreme Court; if the powers of
the General Government under which the industrial or financial interests
of the East operated were questioned, it was easy to find a decision of
Chief Justice Marshall to cover the case. Nothing proved more fortunate
for the leaders of the industrial revolution than the almost constant
support of the federal courts and of the legal profession as a whole.

The compact social life of the industrial towns was still further
reinforced by the clergy. In the shift from a stern theology to an
easy-going religious philosophy, William Ellery Channing was a
conspicuous leader. Harvard had already become a Unitarian center, and
in 1836 the Transcendental Club was organized in Boston with Ralph Waldo
Emerson, a preacher in revolt against the old theology, as one of its
leaders; high-toned men, whose minds revolted alike against the old
Puritanism, the grosser talk of rates of exchange and the building of
common roadways, found consolation in speculative philosophy and
romantic literature. The _North American Review_ was already fifteen
years old, and the best minds of the country were happy to have their
thought and inspirations printed in its staid columns. Boston was a
state of mind in 1830, and a good Methodist preacher who visited the
city a little later lamented the lapse from the great virtues and the
great theology of the Mathers.

But outside of Boston and its university suburb, there was little
patience with a new religion or with a theology which did not teach the
world the total depravity of man and the vengeance of an angry Deity
consigning his wayward children to everlasting perdition. Southern
gentlemen like Calhoun or Hayne might accept the mild and humane God of
Channing, but not the farmers of the rural districts or the business men
of the small towns.

If Boston cultivated philosophy and religious reform, New York was the
seat of a literature that was read. Washington Irving, the author of
the _Sketch-Book_ and _Tales of a Traveller_, was just returning from a
long and triumphant literary sojourn in Europe to make his home on the
Hudson. James Fenimore Cooper was publishing his _Leather Stocking
Tales_, which have made the hair on so many boys' heads stand on end.
William Cullen Bryant was making the _New York Evening Post_ the organ
of American culture and setting the pace for the better element of the
press. In Philadelphia, Carey and Lea were alternately publishing the
writings of struggling literary lights and fiery pamphlets on the tariff
and internal improvements. In 1832 John Pendleton Kennedy, of Maryland,
published his _Swallow Barn_, a novel which portrayed the easy-going
life of the Virginia planters; and in Richmond, William Wirt, disgusted
with Western politics, rested on his laurels as the author of the
_British Spy_ and the _Life of Patrick Henry_. To match the _North
American Review_ the Charleston lovers of literature were publishing
their excellent _Southern Review_. Even history was not without her
muses. Reverend Jared Sparks was editing all the crudities of grammar
and errors of spelling out of Washington's fourteen volumes of
correspondence; George Ticknor, a young professor at Harvard, was
beginning the work which was to culminate in his famous _History of
Spanish Literature_; and George Bancroft was writing a _History of the
United States_ which was to win him international fame and ultimately to
secure him a seat in the Cabinet of President Polk.

If literature and history were beginning to thrive in New England and
the Middle States, painting and sculpture also had their devotees.
Allston and Greenough had won laurels in Boston; Inman and Sully were
making portraits in Philadelphia which well-to-do Middle States lawyers
and Southern planters liked well enough to pay for in good banknotes;
even in far-off Kentucky Joel T. Hart was making the busts of great
American politicians on which his title to distinction was to rest. And
Charleston, never outdone in _ante-bellum_ times, encouraged a real
genius in James de Veaux, the painter, so soon to fall a victim to
tuberculosis. That was a promising religious, literary, and artistic
life, which kept time to the looms of the industrial belt or idealized
the nascent feudalism of the South. But we must turn to the fierce
economic and political struggles about to be reopened in
Washington--struggles in which Americans of that day as well as of this
always take supreme interest.

The change in Massachusetts and Connecticut from a defiant particularism
and an uncompromising free-trade policy, during the short years of 1815
to 1830, to a positive nationalism and emphatic protective program
parallels exactly the change at the same time in South Carolina from
nationalism and a protective tariff to a strict states-rights and an
unbending free-trade system. If Calhoun turned sharp corners in those
years, Webster proved equally agile. The whole life of the East was
being reconstructed, and all classes were adapting themselves to the new
organization. The small farmers, allies in 1804 of Thomas Jefferson and
his up-country democracy, became ancillary to the industrial towns
where they found markets for their products; and the new river and canal
and railroad towns were but the recent creations of the new order. With
the exception of a few remote counties and certain old-fashioned
merchants, all New England and the Middle States ranged themselves
around the dominant industrial masters and presented an almost solid
front to the Southern and Western combination which had swept the
country in 1828. There was no doubt that Adams, Webster, and Clay would
renew the fight in time to make an issue in 1832.

And their case was by no means hopeless. In the electoral college of
1832 these Northeastern States would cast 131 of the total 286 votes. If
the industrial forces could hold their communities together as the West
had learned to do, and regain their former hold on Ohio, their candidate
would again be successful. Losing the Presidency, they would still have,
after the apportionment of 1831, a majority of 10 in the Federal House
of Representatives, which would guarantee the protective policy against
serious modification. And the moral support of the Supreme Court was not
without value. Thus if the new President and the Senate be conceded, the
popular branch of Congress and the national judiciary would make steady

If there were sections of New England, like Maine, or of the Middle
States, like western Pennsylvania, whose people would not support the
industrial program, there were dominant sections of the old South, like
eastern Virginia and all South Carolina, where the leaders either
feared or hated Jackson. Nor did all the West love the South. In the
States which bordered the Ohio River most men demanded internal
improvements at national expense, which all knew the South could not
grant. With the ablest New England and Middle States leaders in the
Senate and House, why might not the arrangement of 1825 be renewed? It
was, then, with every expectation of victory in 1832 that the sanguine
Clay came back to Congress in December, 1831; even John Quincy Adams,
who now became a member of the House, was not without hope that the
ill-selected Cabinet of Jackson would go to pieces and that a
"restoration" would follow in due time. Washington was to be the scene
of still another conflict of the sections that would threaten the very
existence of the Union, not yet accustomed to the idea of a compact


The best sources for the growth of the various industries before 1830
are government documents. _The Report on Manufactures, Executive
Documents_, 22d Cong., 1st Sess., 2 vols., is a rare and valuable work;
and _Executive Documents_, 34th Cong., 1st Sess., vol. 4, gives the
statistics of manufactures down to 1850 by States. Darby and Dwight's
_New Gazetteer of the United States_ (1833), and J. L. Bishop's _History
of American Manufactures_ (1868), are useful if sometimes exasperating.
Miss Katharine Coman's _The Industrial History of the United States_
(1910) is the best account for general use. J. B. McMaster's _History of
the United States_, vol. v (1900), and F. J. Turner's _The Rise of the
New West_ already cited (1906), are always serviceable. For a
cross-section of the industrial revolution in New England, read C. F.
Adams's _Three Episodes of Massachusetts History_ (1903). Davis R.
Dewey's _Financial History of the United States_ (1903) is standard; and
A. C. McLaughlin's _The Court, the Constitution and Parties_ (1912),
gives the best account of the beginnings of judicial supremacy, while
W. G. Sumner's _History of American Banking_ (1896) tells the story of
the banks by sections. The _American Commonwealth_ histories are
serviceable for the individual States. For the biographies of leading
statesmen, the _American Statesmen_ and _American Crises_ series are
satisfying. Intellectual life is well treated in W. P. Trent's _History
of American Literature_ (1903), G. W. Sheldon's _American Painters_
(1899), and Lorado Taft's _History of American Sculpture_ (1903).

                                  CHAPTER IV

                            CONFLICT AND COMPROMISE

The man against whom these powerful leaders were directing all their
energies was still counted an amateur in politics, irascible and
indiscreet. He was laughed at in the cities as a boor and condemned in
New England as an ignoramus, though Harvard College, under some strange
inspiration, was soon to award him the doctorate of laws. Having come to
power by means of a combination of South and West, Jackson had found his
followers divided and somewhat unmanageable. Half the members of his
Cabinet, S. D. Ingham, Secretary of the Treasury; John Branch, Secretary
of the Navy; and John M. Berrien, Attorney-General, looked to Calhoun as
their chief, while the others, Martin Van Buren; Secretary of State,
John H. Eaton, Secretary of War, and William T. Barry, the
Postmaster-General, distrusted their colleagues and clung to the
President. It was natural, therefore, that cabinet meetings should be
embarrassing and that a nondescript group of clerks and newspaper
editors, William B. Lewis, Frank P. Blair, and Amos Kendall, all from
the West, should become a sort of closet cabinet with whom Jackson
should take council.

Moreover, Jackson increased his difficulties by gratifying the Western
demand that a clean sweep in the offices should be made. New and untried
men and hot-headed partisans were placed in the thousands of vacancies
created by removals. Such a change in the civil and subordinate offices
of the Government had never before been made, and Washington society,
which always takes a hearty interest in the offices, was not slow to
manifest its contempt for "the man of the people" and his "hungry"
followers. But there was still another trouble. Secretary Eaton had
married the daughter of a tavern-keeper; her reputation was unsavory and
notorious. She now proposed to enter Washington social life as a leader,
and Jackson gave her his blessing. The wives of the members of the
Cabinet refused to recognize Mrs. Eaton, and a social war followed, in
which President, preachers to the various local churches, and newspaper
editors had their say. Division in the Cabinet, bitter enmity between
certain leaders of the party, and the greater war between the powerful
industrial and agricultural sections of the country gave every assurance
that a storm was approaching.

To postpone the evil day Jackson resorted to evasions and oracular
utterances on the tariff and the other serious problems in all his
public papers and speeches. But the South pressed every day its
free-trade program; the East demanded at least a continuation of the
measure of protection already accorded to its interests; and the West,
really needing roadways and canals, insisted on the building of these
improvements and on the opening of the public lands to settlement on
easier terms. If the President yielded to any of these groups, his
administration was likely to fail. He naturally sought to shift the
issue and felt the public pulse on the question of a renewal of the
charter of the National Bank, which was not to expire till 1836. This
was looking to the future; but on this subject it was possible to
continue the union of South and West. The first annual message, in which
the Bank was discussed, aroused at once the great financial interests,
and they set in motion influences which speedily isolated the President
and secured to the Bank the enthusiastic support of a Cabinet, divided
on everything else, and of a majority of both houses of Congress.
Instead of preventing a disruption of his party, Jackson had only
hastened the event.

The people of South Carolina, supported as they hoped by most of the
South, pressed through Calhoun, during the winter of 1828-29 and again
in 1829-30, for some assurance that the President would aid them in
their attack upon the protective policy of the Government, threatening
state intervention in case of refusal. The East was no less insistent
that nothing should be done. Congress seemed to be completely
deadlocked. Under these circumstances Senator Foote, of Connecticut,
voicing the fears of his section, introduced December 29, 1829, his
famous resolution which contemplated the discontinuance of the federal
land sales and the substantial curbing of the growing West. It was a
blow at Benton and Jackson which was at once accepted by all the West as
a challenge. The representatives of all three sections were deeply
interested. Benton took the lead in the discussion which followed, and
he urged once more his preëmption and graduation bills. In the former
he would guarantee the prior claims of squatters on lands they had
already unlawfully taken up; in the latter he meant to regulate the
price of public lands according to quality and location. In both the
object was to make the way of the pioneer easy; and the West supported
him solidly. Whether the South would keep its tacit pledges in the face
of Jackson's non-committal attitude on the tariff was the query of all
until Hayne, an intimate friend of Calhoun and the recognized spokesman
of his section, arose on January 19, 1830, and took the strongest ground
on behalf of Benton and the West, and attacked the East for its
long-continued resistance to westward expansion. The next day Webster
made reply, and the debate between the two representative men continued
to the end of the month. The importance to the present-day reader of
this discussion consists in the revelation of the directly opposing and
hostile attitudes of South and East on the great problems then before
the country: (1) the South would support the West in its policy of easy
lands and rapid development; the East would resist that policy; (2) the
East would appeal to the nationalist sentiment of the interior and the
West on behalf of its program of protection to industry, while the South
would resist that program even to the extent of declaring national
tariff laws null and void. Hayne and Benton showed in their speeches the
substantial solidarity of the alliance of South and West. Webster
undertook to break that alliance by his powerful appeal to the feelings
of Western men who loved the Union, which the New Englander sought to
show to be in especial danger. What was really on trial was the American
system, the Tariff of 1828. It was a serious national crisis, as Calhoun
wrote in May following: "The times are perilous beyond any that I have
ever witnessed; all the great interests of the country are coming into
conflict." The protectionists thought they must control the country or
the Union would be worth little to them; the Southern free traders
insisted upon the mastery of the Government or else they would have a
quiet dissolution of the Confederation; while the Western men must have
freer control of the public lands and more immigrants or their sturdy
nationalism would rapidly disappear.

Having failed for the moment to rally the leaders of his disintegrating
party on the Bank issue, Jackson and his intimate advisers decided that
above all things it was necessary for the old hero to stand again for
the Presidency in the next election. Van Buren, who had been steadily
growing in the estimation of Jackson, while Calhoun had been losing
ground, was the foremost to urge a second term despite the understanding
and the public promises that Jackson was to hold office only one term.
Amos Kendall and William B. Lewis supported his view heartily, fearing
as they did that Henry Clay would otherwise be the next President. At
the dinner on Jefferson Day, April 13, 1830, for which elaborate
preparations had been made, the President chose to give expression to
more decided opinions than had been customary during his first year in
office. His toast, "The Union, it must be preserved," was akin to the
utterances of Webster in the debate with Hayne. It was plain to the
South that he would not longer support their contentions, that he would
appeal to the same nationalist sentiment which had been shown to exist
by the speeches of the great New England orator. The cause of the
Southern radicals was lost in so far as it depended on the President,
and, moreover, the arrangement whereby Calhoun was to succeed Jackson
was dissolved. South Carolina, so long a leader in public life, was

Meanwhile the friends of Clay and the devotees of the tariff had
prepared an internal improvements measure which was drawn so that the
appropriation would apply to purposes wholly within the State of
Kentucky. The Maysville Road Bill proposed to build a national highway
from Maysville on the Ohio to Lexington, Clay's home, and it was drawn
in order to compel the President to exercise his right of veto on a
proposition in which the West was interested, and thus break down his
popularity in that region. The proposed law came to him in May. Van
Buren had been sounding public opinion in the Middle States, and with
some hesitation he advised a veto. The President was of the same mind,
and a vigorous veto message was sent to Congress. To the dismay of the
tariff men, the country approved heartily, the West giving every
evidence of its continued faith in the Executive. The atmosphere in
Washington began to clear up; it was plain that a reorganization of the
Cabinet must ensue, and that the lower South, as yet in sympathy with
the stern anti-tariff policy of Calhoun, must be won away from the
South Carolinian. It seemed that the West would support the President
even if it were called upon to give up something that was held to be
very important.

In due time William B. Lewis produced a letter from William H. Crawford
which showed, what Jackson must have known since the summer of 1828,
that Calhoun had not been the President's defender in 1818, when he was
threatened with court-martial for his conduct during the Seminole War.
Jackson now made an issue of this, and welcomed a controversy with the
man who had done most to elevate him to the Presidency. Mrs. Eaton also
became a more important character, and the attitude of the families of
other members of the Cabinet were made subjects of official discussion
and displeasure. Calhoun's friends were commanded to receive her into
their circle or take the consequences. When these refused, it seemed
that this tempest in a teapot was about to become a grave matter of
state. None knew better than Jackson and Calhoun that other and deeper
causes were forcing the disruption of the party of 1828, the alliance
which had driven Adams and Clay from office.

Convinced that Van Buren had been the marplot of the Administration,
Calhoun attacked him publicly, and all the world saw what some astute
minds had long seen, that the two wings of the party in power were
irreconcilable enemies. Congress adjourned in March, 1831, and in April
the President demanded the resignations of all the friends of the
Vice-President in the Cabinet. Calhoun and Hayne returned sadly to
their constituents to advise actual resistance to the tariff, since both
the President--"an ungrateful son of Carolina"--and Congress had, during
two years, refused all relief to the suffering planters. Not one of the
problems, the solution of which had been the purpose of Jackson's
election, had been settled or seriously attacked. The East had defeated
Benton's land program; the President had refused to take up the tariff;
and internal improvements as a national policy had only been toyed with
in the Maysville Bill. As Calhoun had said, all the great interests of
the country had come into conflict, and even the most resolute of men
knew not how to proceed.

But Jackson gathered about him a new official family who were supposed
to owe no double allegiance. Edward Livingston, of Louisiana,
protectionist, became Secretary of State in place of Van Buren, who had
resigned for appearance' sake; Louis McLane, of Delaware, a conservative
party leader of protectionist views, was made Secretary of the Treasury
while Roger B. Taney, a former Federalist of Maryland, became
Attorney-General. Lewis Cass, Secretary of War, was the only distinctly
Western man in this new body. Jackson seems to have expected to make the
Bank question the great issue between his party and that of Clay, but
the new Cabinet soon proved as strongly pro-Bank as the old one had
been, and he must still rely on the "kitchen council" for support in
that direction.

The initiative in the great sectional struggle which all foresaw was
left to South Carolina, but the men of that planter Commonwealth refused
to throw discretion to the winds. The price of cotton was falling and
the tribute to the manufacturer under the law of 1828 seemed to be more
burdensome than ever; yet it might be well to try Congress again. The
new Congress, which would assemble in December, 1831, might give relief.
This was Calhoun's last recourse; if it failed nullification must

When the next Congress assembled, Clay was in the Senate and John Quincy
Adams, his former ally, was just beginning his long career as a member
of the House. Webster and the other New England tariff advocates were
there, and as unbending as the Southerners themselves. The President
sent in a non-committal message on the burning question, and even on his
favorite Bank problem he showed signs of yielding. Clay took the message
as preliminary to surrender, and his proverbial boldness rapidly grew to
arrogance. On the tariff, on the Bank, and on the proposed nullification
problems, he would give the deciding word and that word was defiance.

When, therefore, the cotton and tobacco interests presented once more
their demand for immediate downward revision of the tariff, Clay and his
more ardent protectionists brushed aside the cautious Adams and defied
"the South, the Democratic party, and the Devil." The revision of the
tariff which was made in 1832 was no revision, save in a few unimportant
schedules in which the planters were not interested; but the vote on
this measure showed a curious combination of the Jackson and the Clay
politicians in the West and considerable indifference in New
England, as the accompanying map shows. Having challenged Calhoun to do
his worst, Clay now pressed upon Jackson the question of renewing the
Bank charter. Under his instructions the president of the Bank, Nicholas
Biddle, a very able man, hitherto inclining to settle matters with
Jackson and his friendly advisers, offered a memorial for a re-charter.
That is, the Bank men thought the President of the United States was
losing ground and they would take their chances with the party of the
future. The Maysville veto was thought to have weakened Jackson; he had
lost the support of Calhoun and had been compelled to reorganize his
Cabinet; on the tariff he had no opinions, and he had done nothing to
weld to him the Westerners. It seemed a very simple matter, with the
East behind the brilliant Kentucky leader, to make the American System
the law of the land and to drive the Goths and Vandals from the capital.

[Illustration: The Vote in the House of Representatives on the Tariff of
1832, In Eastern and Western States]

Mr. Clay had been nominated for the Presidency by an enthusiastic
convention of his followers in December, 1831; and his friend William
Wirt had also been nominated three months earlier by the Anti-Masons,
who, it was supposed, would draw supporters from the Democrats,
especially in Virginia, where Jackson had never won the approval of the
ablest leaders. Never did the outlook of a political party seem so
bright as when the plans of the tariff and Bank men were being laid in
the spring of 1832. John Sargent, one of the directors of the Bank and
brother-in-law of Henry A. Wise, a shrewd politician of Virginia, was
made candidate for the Vice-Presidency; a large majority of the Senate
was committed to the renewal of the charter,--even the Calhoun men
agreed as to this,--and in the House John Quincy Adams and George
McDuffie led a decided majority in the same direction. All the
industrial forces of the country were enlisted and well organized. If
there was any doubt that the old hero would be reëlected, there was none
that the Bank and the tariff groups would retain control of Congress.

If Jackson was less confident than his opponents, he was not afraid. The
effects of his "Union, it-must-be-preserved" speech were becoming
evident; he gradually came to stand for the budding nationality among
the self-seeking groups who would have their way or break up the
Confederation. With the large majority of the up-country of the Middle
States and South in favor of a tariff, even a high tariff, he promptly
accepted the proposed revision. Already nominated by many of the States,
his friends had no difficulty in securing him a unanimous renomination
from the Democratic National Convention which met in Baltimore late in
May, 1832. Meanwhile Van Buren had been appointed Minister to England.
After reaching his post, the Senate, to gratify Calhoun as well as
strike at the President, rejected the nomination. The humiliated
minister was now nominated Vice-President and plainly marked by Jackson
as his successor.

When the votes of both houses were shown to be decidedly for a
continuation of the protective system as enacted in 1828, Calhoun and
the planter party gave every assurance that South Carolina, at least,
would resist. The President gave out no indications of what his attitude
would be, but the extreme Southerners could not expect that Jackson
would support their contentions; nor could they think Clay, if elected,
would yield the very base of the system on which he proposed to stand as
President. But as the tariff bill came to its final reading, it was seen
that even New England hesitated, and many voted against the measure;
many districts of the Southern up-country gave their votes for the
proposed law. In the West most men favored the bill. The tariff was,
therefore, a local issue, and the test must come on the Bank. The bill
for a re-charter of the National Bank reached the President on July 4.
It was considered most carefully, and doubtless the desperate situation
of the Administration was duly canvassed. With every evidence of a
strong Southern secession from his party, with Clay and Webster leading
the solid ranks of the East, it did seem that Jackson would fail if he
vetoed the bill passed by great majorities in both Senate and House.

On July 10 the veto message went to Congress. Its contention about the
constitutionality of the Bank was not important, for it was not a
question of what was constitutional, but of sheer power. The majority of
the votes in the coming election was what each side sought. Jackson
appealed to the West and South, urging that the Bank was a sectional
institution constantly drawing money to the big cities of the East, or
worse still, sending it to England; that it was a monopoly which had
given millions of the people's money to a few men, and that it was then
proposed to continue that monopoly. So certain were Clay and Biddle that
they would defeat the President that they circulated at the expense of
the Bank thirty thousand copies of this remarkable document. Biddle
declared that Jackson was like "a chained panther, biting the bars of
his cage." Webster and John Quincy Adams, taking counsel of their hopes,
declared that the old man in the White House was in his dotage and at
the end of his career.

A remarkable campaign ensued. While South Carolina prepared to put into
effect its remedy of state intervention, the West and the lower South
united, as in 1828, against the East. The gubernatorial contest in
Kentucky, which came in August, showed that Clay had not regained his
former hold on that State. From midsummer to November every effort was
made to break the power of Jackson, but to no avail. Without the planter
support of the older South the President proved stronger than he had
been four years before with it; the plain people were now more of a unit
than they had ever been before, though many of their number still voted
for the industrial or planter interests. The outcome surprised all
parties. Jackson received 219 electoral votes, while Clay received only
49. The popular majority over all other candidates, including William
Wirt and John Floyd, for whom the Calhoun party of South Carolina cast
its vote, was more than 125,000. No President has since received such a
large proportion of the suffrages of the people. Only one Western State,
Kentucky, supported Henry Clay; while Ohio, Pennsylvania, and New York
gave Jackson larger majorities than ever. The alliance of the West and
the up-country held together in spite of the untoward circumstances.

The significance of the election was that the President could rely upon
the people in a fight with Congress; it was the first appeal to the
country made over the heads of the national legislature. To this
triumphant President, Calhoun and his ardent nullifiers must refer their
case; the Bank would also have to reckon with a much stronger man than
its spokesmen had contemplated.

Without awaiting the results of the election, Calhoun, Hayne, and their
allies called South Carolina into special convention to consider the
state of the Union. The nullification program was carried by safe
majorities, despite the most strenuous resistance on the part of the
minority who called themselves Unionists. South Carolina now formally
declared the tariff laws of the United States suspended after February
1, 1833, unless the Federal Government gave some relief; and it was
further declared that in case no relief were accorded, and the national
authority should be enforced within the boundaries of their State, war
would immediately ensue. The new governor, James Hamilton, and the
legislature, which might be called into extra session at any time, were
authorized to call out the militia, purchase arms, and organize for the

Meanwhile Jackson had been preparing for the contest in the Southwest.
In 1827-28 all the legislatures of that region had declared the
protective tariff unconstitutional and some had threatened secession.
But after the election of 1828 these same legislatures refused to concur
in the doctrines of nullification which South Carolina submitted to
them. The situation had changed. John Quincy Adams, the New Englander,
was President in 1828; Andrew Jackson, the Westerner and the most
popular man in the country, was at the head of the Union in 1832.
Besides, Jackson was already moving the Indians from the cotton lands,
going so far as to acquiesce in the flagrant nullification of the
federal law by the Georgia governor and legislature. The decision of the
Supreme Court in favor of the Cherokees, who refused to surrender their
lands, was publicly flouted by the President. It was plain that the
planters of the Southwest would get what they wanted even if they had to
violate treaties of the Federal Government. They refused to sustain
South Carolina. Had not the President carried every county in Alabama
and Mississippi in the recent election?

And in the older South the anti-national feeling had wonderfully cooled
since 1828. North Carolina reversed her attitude; Tennessee would not
consider Calhoun's plan of bringing the Union to terms. In Virginia the
tobacco counties of the Piedmont section united with the tidewater
counties and made a show of supporting South Carolina. New England men
who had as recently as 1820 declared the protective system
unconstitutional had no thought of maintaining such a doctrine when
advocated by Calhoun.

Thus, instead of a solid group of planter States, South Carolina's
proposed national referendum met with almost unanimous opposition.
Jackson had undermined the party of Calhoun, which at the time of the
break-up of the Cabinet in 1831 seemed more powerful in the South than
any other. Jackson and Van Buren had proved to be master politicians,
and when Congress met for the short session in December, 1832, it was
plain that Calhoun was practically alone and that the President would
have to deal with only one recalcitrant State.

From this vantage-ground, Jackson issued his proclamation of December
10, in which he plainly told South Carolina that the federal laws would
be enforced at the point of the bayonet, and that, furthermore, the
Union was an indissoluble nation, as Webster and himself had declared;
and he at the same time urged upon Congress the so-called "Force Bill,"
granting him full power to punish all infractions of the national
revenue laws. And now for the first time he expressed his real view that
the tariff was unjust. The Verplanck Bill to reduce the tariff to a
twenty-five per cent basis was the President's confession that Calhoun
had been right. The two measures were pressed by the Administration, the
one strongly national and supported by a strong majority, the other
strongly Jacksonian and opposed by most of the leaders who desired to
see Calhoun humiliated. It seemed almost certain, early in 1833, that
this program would be carried out to the letter.

Such a victory for the Union forces and especially for Jackson was too
much for the opposition. Henry Clay stopped in Philadelphia on his way
to Washington and held a conference there with the industrial leaders of
the Middle States. He went on to the capital with a plan of his own. Its
purpose was to keep the control of things in the hands of the friends of
the American System and to deprive the President of the prestige of
settling the tariff and the nullification problems at the same time. He
held a _carte blanche_ from the leading protected interests to do what
he thought best. Webster and John Quincy Adams hesitated. They urged the
passage of the "Force Bill" at once; but hoped to defeat the Verplanck
measure, its counterpart. Clay made overtures to Calhoun, and Washington
was surprised to see the two great antagonists associating and planning
together, apparently in concert as of old when they forced the War of
1812 upon an unwilling President.

The "Force Bill" was to be accepted by the Calhoun men; but a new and
final tariff measure was to take the place of the one upon which Jackson
had set his heart. The famous compromise law of 1833 was the result.
This gave the planters a reduction to twenty per cent, a lower rate than
Jackson had offered, but the reductions were to be made gradually during
a period of ten years, thus giving time for the industrial men to
readjust their affairs without great losses. There was one joker in the
scheme which the Southerners seem to have winked at: that which exempted
the wool-growers of the Middle States and the West from the reductions.
The author of the American System now hotly urged the men who a year
ago would defy the "South, the Democratic party, and the Devil" to undo
all their work. On March 1, three days before the close of the session,
both the President's "Force Bill" and Clay's compromise tariff passed.

Meanwhile South Carolina, acting on Calhoun's advice, had postponed the
enforcement of her nullifying ordinance, and now, as Congress adjourned,
the former Vice-President, ill and greatly discouraged, hurried by rapid
stages to Columbia to make sure that the crisis should be brought to a
peaceful close. The convention was reassembled; an embassy from Virginia
was on the ground urging peace, and, as was natural, the ordinance was
repealed. The planters had really won a victory and the rising
industrial groups understood this both at the time and later, when they
clamored for the restoration of their privileges. The cotton and tobacco
men, producing the larger part of the national exports, had shown their
strength. Their opponents, the manufacturers and the bankers of the
East, with a much greater income, were as yet not so strong as the
planters. The West and the South were their markets, and concessions
must be made; the Union was to them essential, while to the South,
selling its huge crops in European markets, it was less important. As
yet the West, with its hero the master in Washington, had obtained none
of the reforms for which it had so long striven. Benton and his friends
looked to the next Congress for results. Would they be disappointed?


_The Messages and Papers of the Presidents_ (1900), vol. _II_, gives
Jackson's official statements. Bassett's and Parton's biographies,
already mentioned, are still very serviceable. There is no full
biography of Clay, but C. Colton's _The Private Life of Henry Clay_
contains some of Clay's letters. Carl Schurz's _Henry Clay_ and T. H.
Clay's _Henry Clay_, already noted, offer some good information. The
best source for Calhoun is J. F. Jameson's _The Correspondence of John
C. Calhoun_ (1899). G. Hunt's _Life of Calhoun_ (1908), in _American
Crises_ series, is excellent, while D. F. Houston's _Critical Study of
Nullification_, already referred to, and W. E. Dodd's _Calhoun_, in
_Statesmen of the Old South_ (1911), offer still further information as
to Calhoun and nullification. C. H. Van Tyne's _Letters of Daniel
Webster_ (1902) supplies information about Webster which is lacking in
the older _Works_ by Everett (1851) or F. Webster (1857). H. C. Lodge's
_Daniel Webster_, in _American Statesmen_ series and J. B. McMaster's
_Daniel Webster_ (1902) are the standard biographies. Thomas H. Benton
has told his own story in his _Thirty Years' View_ (1854), though
Roosevelt's _Thomas Hart Benton_, in the _American Statesmen_, and W. M.
Meigs's _Thomas Hart Benton_, in the _American Crises_ series, are good
brief portraits. William McDonald's _The Jacksonian Democracy_ (1906),
in the _American Nation_ series, is an excellent general survey, while
E. Stanwood's _American Tariff Controversies_ (1903) is the best account
of the tariff disputes.

                                   CHAPTER V

                            THE TRIUMPH OF JACKSON

Before the great conflict between the manufacturers and the planters had
been brought to a lame conclusion in the force bill and the tariff
compromise of 1833, so unsatisfactory to everybody, Jackson had taken up
the Bank problem, in which the West was particularly interested. The
annual message of 1832 indicated his intention to close up the business
in accordance with what seemed to him to be the decree of the people.
But while the President regarded an election as settling the matter, it
soon became clear that Nicholas Biddle and the leaders of the United
States Senate were far from that opinion. Having combined to defeat the
"old Indian scalper," as Biddle was wont to term Jackson, in his plan to
bring South Carolina to terms, these able men continued their operations
to balk him on the Bank question.

The Bank of the United States had a capital stock of $35,000,000, its
twenty-nine branches ramified the commerce of the country, and its total
volume of business was about $70,000,000, or more than the amount of the
national exports each year. It practically controlled the currency, and
it could increase or diminish the amount of money in circulation by
about one third at any time. Nicholas Biddle, a trained financier and
strong-willed aristocrat, who put little faith in popular elections and
plebiscites, was the head of the Bank, and all the presidents and
directorates of the subordinate banks were his appointees; he controlled
absolutely all the departments and all the directors of the parent bank
in Philadelphia, going so far in 1833 as to deny the government
directors their lawful right to attend the board meetings. There has
never been another financial leader in the United States who was so
powerful or so much feared as was Nicholas Biddle in 1833.

Both sides prepared for a renewal of the struggle for or against a new
charter. Jackson sent Secretary of State Livingston as Minister to
France early in 1833, and transferred Secretary McLane from the Treasury
to the State Department. It was known that both Livingston and McLane
opposed the President in his plan of overthrowing the Bank, and this
shift was made to avoid another break-up of the Cabinet and to enable
Jackson to get a Secretary of the Treasury who would support him.
William J. Duane, of Pennsylvania, accepted the vacant portfolio in
January, 1833, knowing well the President's purpose, which was to
withhold from the Bank the federal deposits. Agents were sent out to
ascertain what state banks were in a condition to receive the proposed
government funds, and of course a strong banking support was thus
secured for the contemplated policy.

Biddle laughed at Jackson's message of 1832 which denounced the Bank. He
expected to receive from Congress in due time the charter which the
President had denied. More than fifty members of that body, including
Clay, Webster, George McDuffie,--Calhoun's ally and the chairman of the
House Committee on Ways and Means,--and the famous Davy Crockett, were
borrowers from the Bank on the easiest of terms. The greater newspaper
editors of New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Washington, and Richmond
were either opposed to the President or on Biddle's list of
beneficiaries; while scores of hack writers all over the country
received their stipends from the "Monster," as Jackson designated the
Bank. It might have been an easy matter for Biddle and Clay to secure
their charter from the Congress which sat in its closing session in the
winter of 1833. But the great thing before them at that time was the
nullification-tariff problem, which threatened civil war, and the
friends of the Bank joined the protectionists and, under Clay's deft
leadership, as we have seen, defeated Jackson's plan for tariff reform.
The short session drew to a close, and Biddle, Clay, and Webster
prepared for renewing their fight when Congress came together in

When the lines began to tighten in the summer of 1833, Duane weakened
and finally refused to withhold the government deposits from the Bank.
He was dismissed from office and Roger B. Taney, the Attorney-General,
took the vacant place and agreed to do Jackson's bidding. From October
1, 1833, the income of the Treasury was placed as it accrued in the
custody of the state banks which had been made ready for the new policy.
Jackson declared that the National Bank had become unsafe and therefore
an unfit place for the keeping of $10,000,000 of the people's money,
the amount then on deposit. But the real reason of the change was social
and political. The President desired to weaken the Bank, lest its
representatives, its masterful lobbyists, and the financial pressure it
was bringing to bear should wrest from Congress a charter which the
people had repudiated.

Meanwhile Biddle had begun his campaign to compel both Jackson and the
people to yield. On August 1, two months before the Treasury began to
place its receipts in the state banks, Biddle ordered a curtailment of
the loans of the National Bank and its branches. In the South and West,
where large sums were needed at that moment to move the cotton and grain
crops, the curtailment was double that of the East. This led to
immediate financial stringency; National Bank notes, the standard money
of the time, became scarce; and gold or silver was absolutely wanting.
The state banks were naturally forced to withhold their accustomed loans
and the anticipated government deposits could not be drawn upon.
Business failures became frequent and laborers were discharged. It was a
panic in the midst of prosperity. The program was executed with callous
heartlessness by Biddle, and with the approval of men like Clay and
Webster, till Congress met in December.

The people were beginning to see what a power they had attacked. Rates
of interest rose from six to fifteen per cent; farms and crops were sold
under the sheriff's hammer at absurdly low prices. The outlook was
anything but bright when the next annual message of the President called
upon the national legislature to aid him in his struggle. Petitions
were pouring into Washington by the thousand, and delegations of
business men appeared almost daily at the White House, asking Jackson to
restore the deposits and surrender to the great corporation, thus
acknowledging the subordination of the country to one of its interests.

Under these circumstances and awaiting confidently the effect of the
Bank's drastic pressure upon public opinion, Clay began in January,
1834, the work of compelling the President to restore the deposits. For
weeks and even months the Senate was the scene of the most extraordinary
denunciations, and the press of the country was burdened with the
attacks and counter-attacks of the parties to this fierce and
unrelenting struggle. In the East business failures, the closing of the
doors of manufacturing establishments, and the discharge of small armies
of employees furnished all the proof necessary that the distress was
real. From all sections of the country cries of distress, memorials, and
petitions came up to Washington. Biddle and his friends had no thought
of relenting, but continued the curtailment of the financial business of
the country far beyond what might have seemed necessary on account of
the removal of deposits; they were certain that only a few months more
of pressure and of increased suffering on the part of the people would
compel Jackson to yield or Congress to grant the desired charter over
the head of the President.

But the Congress which was elected in 1832 and which sat from December,
1833, to March, 1835, was not so pliable as that which arranged the
peace with South Carolina. Still, the Senate sustained the Bank by a
decided majority, and in March it formally censured Jackson for his
removal of the deposits. In this Clay was conspicuous, and Webster and
Calhoun were his sympathetic allies. On the other hand, Benton, Silas
Wright, of New York, and John Forsyth, of Georgia, made a most spirited
defense of Jackson and of the cause of the people, as they insisted. In
the House the situation was reversed, and all Biddle's energy and
resolute lobbying failed to secure a favorable vote. It became clear
early in the spring that the President could not be moved, and that
impeachment, which had been the hope and talk of many, would be
impossible. When the weight of public opinion inclined visibly to the
side of Jackson at the end of spring, Clay, who had for some time
doubted the loyalty of Biddle, and who was especially anxious to regain
his former popularity in the West, refused to continue the fight;
Webster, too, lost interest and advised the directors of the Bank that
the cause was lost. Calhoun, who had supported Clay and Webster to
humiliate Jackson, could not retreat; he was again isolated, and he felt
his position bitterly. McDuffie resigned his seat and his chairmanship
in the House in utter disgust. To all but the president of the United
States Bank the case seemed hopeless when Congress adjourned in early
summer without passing any act bearing on the situation. Biddle's remark
in a letter to a friend in Baltimore, "If the Bank charter were renewed
or prolonged, I believe the pecuniary difficulties of the country would
be immediately healed," shows his attitude; and by this time the people
seem to have come to the conclusion that it was not a war of Jackson
upon the Bank so much as a war of the Bank upon the country to compel
the reissue of a charter which was about to expire. Petitions now poured
into Biddle's office and delegations from Middle States cities urged a
change of the Bank's policy; even Albert Gallatin, long a defender and
ardent friend, deserted Biddle. And at last, after the nation's currency
of some hundred millions had been reduced by one third, and when money
rates in New York were running as high as twenty-four per cent, the
order went out to the branch banks to suspend the stringent punitive
measures in order that "We may save our beloved country from the curse
of Van Burenism," as one of the directors described it.

The decline of the power of the Bank was now rapid. In the state and
congressional elections of 1834 the President of the United States was
everywhere sustained, even the Whigs quietly taking the same ground. The
friendship of the Bank was now enough to damn any party; Biddle realized
the danger of his situation, and on election day sent his family out of
town and barricaded his house and office. The legislatures of
Pennsylvania and New York, where his flag had flown triumphantly for
years, denounced him and planned to issue bonds for the relief of the
people. The autumn saw a complete reversal of policy on the part of the
Bank, and business at once resumed its normal course. Money became
easy, prices rose to the former level, and the wheels of industry began
to turn. Nothing seemed more conclusively shown than that most of the
trouble had been due to the demand on the part of a few men for a
continuation of financial privileges.

Jackson's first great victory was won, and he would have been more than
human not to have shown his sense of triumph on the reassembling of
Congress at the end of the momentous year. The Monster had been crushed;
and all his great enemies--Clay, Webster, Adams, and Calhoun--had been

Before the first break in the Cabinet Jackson had proved the value of
direct and simple methods in diplomacy. In colonial times and during the
operation of the Jay Treaty the West India trade was most important.
From New England and the Middle States fish, lumber, grain, and other
plantation supplies had been sold to the West India planters in great
quantities. The war of the Revolution curtailed this trade; that of 1812
practically destroyed it, and England thereafter refused to allow
American shipping any rights in these possessions, though Adams and Clay
had urged the reciprocal benefits of such a commerce.

The Jackson Administration succeeded in securing almost immediately the
desired trade arrangements, and the shipping of the Chesapeake Bay, of
Boston and New York, took its wonted course. This victory was hardly
scored before the new President secured from France formal treaty
recognition of the old spoliation claims arising from the depredations
of Napoleon I, which no former administration had been able to collect.
In 1831 the Government of Louis Philippe agreed to pay these damages to
the amount of 25,000,000 francs. But the French legislature delayed to
vote the necessary appropriations. Jackson, assuming that the
obligations would be met promptly, drew upon the French treasury for the
first installment and asked the National Bank to collect the
bills--somewhat over $900,000. The papers were duly presented in Paris,
but they were dishonored. This happened in 1833, when the Bank was in
the midst of the fight on the President. Biddle, without hesitation,
charged the Government $15,000 for the damage to the reputation of the
Bank because the draft had been dishonored in Paris. The Government
refused to pay the claim, and a lawsuit of ten years followed which was
finally decided against the Bank.

It was at this juncture that Jackson, preparing for the removal of the
deposits, sent Secretary Livingston to France to urge the execution of
the treaty of 1831. Livingston failed to convince the French assembly
that it was necessary either to pay the overdue claims or to execute
certain reciprocity clauses of the treaty. In December, 1834, when the
Bank crisis had passed, the President sent to Congress a message which
asked for the passage of an act authorizing reprisals on French shipping
or other property. Such a warlike proposition, with the explanation
which accompanied it, aroused the country. In commercial centers there
was great excitement, and insurance companies changed their contracts
in expectation of war.

Once more the President was opposed and denounced in the Senate as a
reckless Executive who would rush headlong into war. But the treaty with
France authorized just such procedure as had been suggested, and only
recently France had taken the same course with other countries. It soon
became so clear that Jackson was within his rights and that the country
was behind him, that resolutions were suffered to pass the Senate
virtually approving this part of the message. In the House the vote
indorsing the Executive was unanimous, though it was not thought
advisable to do more than this until there had been ample time for
reconsideration of the subject in France.

The strong language of the President aroused a storm of criticism in
France, and for a time war was threatened. The French Minister in
Washington was recalled, and of course the diplomatic representative of
the United States in Paris was withdrawn. The conservative press of
Europe made this another occasion for ridiculing the Yankee Republic,
whose money-making propensities should be curtailed and whose gaudy
wares and vulgar rocking-chairs should be tabooed everywhere. "Let the
French navy sweep the Atlantic Ocean of their ships and again take
possession of Louisiana" was the unfriendly advice of certain English
journals. Before the summer of 1835 closed, all relations between France
and the United States had ceased, though actual war was not expected.
When Congress met, Jackson reviewed the situation in a calm manner and
gave every opportunity for the reopening of negotiations, though warlike
preparations were recommended to meet those of France. But England
tendered her friendly offices, and the difficulty was promptly brought
to a satisfactory conclusion by the payment of the indemnity so long

More interesting and more important to the West and South was the stern
and persistent policy of Jackson in removing the Indians from their
fertile lands. From Michigan the natives were pushed into Wisconsin and
Illinois, where they rested a few short years, only to be driven in 1833
beyond the Mississippi to the western parts of Iowa and Minnesota,
against the heroic struggles of Black Hawk and a handful of followers.
From the lower South the Creeks, Cherokees, Choctaws, and Chickasaws
were gradually removed during the years 1830 to 1838, sometimes after
the most shameless and brutal treatment by the representatives of both
the States and the Nation. Before Jackson came to office the Creeks of
western Georgia had been browbeaten into sales of their lands and then
removed to the region beyond Arkansas, to be known thereafter as the
Indian Territory. In 1833 to 1835 the Choctaws and Chickasaws of
Mississippi were defrauded of their best lands and carried forcibly to
the new Indian country; but the most arbitrary part of the governmental
policy was the expulsion of the Cherokees from their beautiful hills in
northern Georgia. Thirteen thousand in number, civilized and devotedly
attached to their homes, these people insisted on remaining and
becoming a State to themselves. Under the leadership of John Ross, they
presented the case to the United States Supreme Court, which decided in
1830 that they composed a nation and that they could not lawfully be
compelled to submit to Georgia. The people of Georgia would not for a
moment consider such a proposition, and moreover they had made up their
minds that the Cherokees must likewise give up their lands and migrate
to the Far West. Jackson took this view, and in December, 1835, he made
a treaty with some of the chiefs whereby the Cherokees were to receive
new lands in the Indian Territory and more than five millions in money.
This treaty was at once denounced and repudiated by the majority of the
Indians, but the government agents executed it, and during the next
three years the helpless natives were hunted down and carried, all save
a small remnant, to the new region. Thus President Monroe's plan of
settling the natives beyond the western frontier in Minnesota, Iowa,
Kansas, and what is now Oklahoma, was worked out, and the land-hungry
Western settlers were fast following them into their distant homes; but
practically all the lands east of the great river were open to
settlement, and Wisconsin, Illinois, Alabama, and Mississippi rapidly
became populous communities.[4] No measure of Jackson's Administration
won him greater popularity than that of the removal of the Indians.

[Footnote 4: Compare maps showing Indian lands of 1830 and 1840 on pp.
26 and 88.]

[Illustration: Growth of the West and removal of Indians from Cotton,
Tobacco and First "Western" Grain Belts.

Reproduction of part of Tanner's Map of 1840]

With the tariff question "definitely" settled, the internal improvements
demands temporarily in abeyance, the Bank "out of the way," and with a
growing prestige both at home and abroad, Jackson might now have
formulated the other Western ideals, free homesteads, the re-claiming of
Texas, and the occupation of Oregon. But this was all left to Van Buren,
the man already practically chosen to carry forward the policies of the
"old hero." However, without a free homestead law or even a preëmption
system, on which Benton had long insisted, the West was filling up with
people in an unprecedented manner. The population of Alabama was only a
little more than a hundred thousand in 1820; in 1835, it was not less
than half a million. Mississippi counted seventy-five thousand in 1820;
in 1840, its population had increased sixfold. The same story was told
by the statistics of Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Iowa.
There was life, vigor, and rapid growth in all the accessible parts of
the region which worshiped the President. Jackson's election was an
advertisement of the West; the long debates in Congress about checking
emigration to the Mississippi Valley increased the desire to go to the
new and happy country; and the hard times of 1833-34 set thousands of
men upon the highways leading to the promised land. And in the Western
States every effort was made to attract people. Ohio, Indiana, and
Illinois built waterways which should feed the Mississippi or Erie Canal
commerce, and thus make Western life profitable as well as free and
unconventional. Where canals could not be constructed would go the great
government road, passing through Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois, and its
state-built branches. Even railroads were projected in that far-off
country. In the Southwest the network of rivers offered transportation
facilities to the increasing crops of cotton, and ambitious men flocked
there to "make fortunes in a day." Sargent Prentiss, the poor New
England cripple, went to Mississippi about 1830, and in six years he
was both rich and famous; John A. Quitman, the preacher's son, of New
York, worked his way about the same time to the lower Mississippi
country, and in a few years was receiving an annual income of forty
thousand dollars. John Slidell left New York City a bankrupt in 1819,
but soon became a great lawyer and slave-owner in New Orleans.

The yearly migration of thousands of Eastern men to the valley of the
Mississippi was still further augmented by streams of refugees from the
unsettled and distressed conditions of Germany. In Ohio, Kentucky,
southern Illinois, and Missouri these idealistic emigrants from Europe
found new homes and substantial encouragement. They sent glowing
accounts of the new world to their friends at home, and the tide of
immigration which was destined to enrich American life steadily
increased. All this stimulated speculation in Western lands, in canal
and banking ventures. The Government sales of lands rose from $4,837,000
in 1834 to $24,000,000 in 1836. And the canal schemes of Ohio, Indiana,
and Illinois found financial support in New York and in London. No
wonder the eastern manufacturers sometimes desired to close the roads
that crossed the Alleghanies.

"Nothing succeeds like success" is an American saying which applies
admirably to Jackson's second administration. The Western President had
won all his great contests; Calhoun and the radical South had been
tamed; Clay and Webster were dragged behind his car of state; the
National Bank was rapidly passing from the political stage; and the
tariff was no longer a troublesome factor in public life. The receipts
of the Treasury had steadily outrun the expenses, and in 1834 the last
of the national debt was paid. Since the income was almost certain to
continue great, Jackson was at a loss what to do. Henry Clay urged a
simple distribution among the States. The President feared the effect of
this, and vetoed a bill to that effect; he even proposed that the
Federal Government should buy stock in all the railway corporations in
order that these growing monopolies be duly restrained. After two years
of disagreement a law was enacted which offered to deposit the surplus
with the States without interest charges, but subject to recall. The
States hastened to make the necessary arrangements, and during the
second half of 1836 and the first quarter of 1837 more than $18,000,000
were thus deposited.

The land speculations, already at fever heat in the West, the building
of railways and canals, and the prospective distribution of millions of
the public money warned the wise that sail must be taken in, else
disaster would ensue. Jackson, therefore, issued an executive order in
July, 1836, requiring the land offices to accept only specie in payment
for lands; but it was not thought that this would occasion any great
distress. The people seemed to be satisfied with the "reign" of Andrew
Jackson, and it might have been expected that he would have little
difficulty in placing his friend Van Buren in the high office so soon to
be vacated.

[Illustration: The Presidential Election of 1836, the Popular
Vote by Counties]

It did not prove so easy as it seemed. Calhoun and his followers
were still hostile. In Tennessee, Hugh Lawson White was heading a
serious revolt against Jackson and all his party, and of course New
England was still dissatisfied. Since the great fight between the
President and the Bank in 1833-34, Henry Clay had been welding together
all the forces of the opposition. States-rights men in the South, like
John Tyler, of Virginia, and William C. Preston, of South Carolina, the
conservative forces in the Middle States who were connected with banking
and "big business," and the internal improvements forces of the West
that were still discontented, were all united in a more or less cohesive
party of opposition. A platform they could not risk; in fact, platforms
were not as yet necessary for election, nor was it thought best to
nominate a single pair of candidates and submit their case to the
country. The Whigs, as the opposition now came to be called, arranged a
ticket which Daniel Webster led in the East, which William Henry
Harrison, a popular military hero of the Northwest, headed in that
section, and which Hugh Lawson White, a Jackson man till 1834,
championed in the Southwest. There followed a four-cornered contest
which resulted in the choice of Van Buren by a popular majority of less
than 30,000. Van Buren carried more of the New England States than did
Webster and more of the South than did White, but he lost most of the
West, even Tennessee, which had been the stronghold of his party. The
counties of the old South where Jackson had been most feared gave their
votes to Van Buren, the "safe and sane"; and many New England and
Middle States manufacturers preferred to take their chances with a
masterful organizer of conservative temper, who had been the balance
wheel of the Jackson Administration, to risking all in an election in
the House of Representatives, where the sections would be fighting
fiercely for political and party advantages. The new régime of 1829 was
thus about to be turned into a reaction. There was a common feeling that
Van Buren would do nothing "radical." Even Calhoun thought better of the
President-elect than he thought of the "old hero," and the first six
months of the new Administration had not passed before he gave the
President his support.

The political sun of Jackson went down brightly, not a cloud on the
horizon; and his chosen successor declared openly in his inaugural that
he would gladly follow in "the footsteps of his illustrious
predecessor." The country was still prosperous and the wheels of
industry were running at full speed. Foreign Governments looked on with
envy as the young Western Republic stretched her limbs and rose to
gigantic proportions.


The most important book on the bank question is R. C. H. Catterall's
_The Second Bank of the United States_ (1903). The biographies referred
to at the close of chapter _IV_ of this volume are all serviceable in
general till about 1840. James Schouler's _History of the United States_
(1894-99), vol. _IV_, and H. von Holst's _Constitutional and Political
History of the United States_ (new ed., 1899), vol. _II_, give full
narratives of the "war on the bank." J. Q. Adams's _Memoirs_ are ever
ready with the spice of personality to make its pages readable. _The
Register of Debates_, the official publication of Congress which
succeeded the former _Annals of Congress_ and _Niles's Weekly Register_,
published in Baltimore from 1811 to 1849, give the various phases of
public opinion as it was expressed in Congress and in the newspapers of
the time. _House Reports_, 22d Cong., 1st Sess., no. 460, and _House
Executive Documents_, 23d Cong., 1st Sess., no. 523, will satisfy those
who seek to know the two sides as viewed by the parties to the conflict.
There is no satisfactory biography of Nicholas Biddle, though his papers
may be consulted in the Pennsylvania Historical Society Library. R. G.
Wellington's _The Political and Sectional Influence of the Public Lands,
1828-1842_ (1914) tends to show how much of the controversies of these
years was due to sectional jealousy.

                                   CHAPTER VI

                              DISTRESS AND REACTION

Martin Van Buren came to office without the enthusiastic support of any
large segment of public opinion. The machine forces of the time and the
hearty recommendation of Andrew Jackson had been responsible for his
elevation. His position was very much like that of John Quincy Adams in
1825. If the East had preferred him to his predecessor, it was not
because the East proposed to surrender any of her interests; and if the
West liked him less than she had liked her hero, it was just because his
feelings and interests were suspected.

He had supported Jackson in the breaking-down of a stable civil service
in 1829, in order to ruin their common opponents, Adams and Clay. Now
Van Buren was to inherit the evils of the spoils system, and Adams,
Clay, and Webster were leading the attack upon him both in Congress and
in the country. Jackson's collector of the customs in New York defaulted
in the sum of $1,250,000 during the first year of Van Buren's term; and
to make matters worse the new appointee behaved quite as scandalously
the next year. Out of sixty-seven land officers in the West and South,
sixty-four were reported in 1837 as defaulters, and the United States
Treasury lost nearly a million dollars on their account. The Jacksonian
Democracy was certainly putting its worst foot foremost, and the great
leaders of the opposition held up their hands in horror at a system
which "reeked with corruption from center to circumference."

Van Buren had begun badly. But worse was to follow. The receipts from
federal land sales dropped from $24,000,000 in 1836 to $6,000,000 in
1837, and the total income of the Government declined from $50,000,000
to $24,000,000 in the same year; and the expenditures of the Treasury
outran the receipts during 1837 and 1838 by more than $21,000,000. A
deficit of $300,000,000 for two successive years in our time would not
be worse than the deficit of the unpopular successor of Andrew Jackson.
From 1833 to 1836 there had been an annual surplus equal sometimes to
the total expense of the Government. The national debt had been paid in
full and money had been loaned to the States without interest or
security. There was to be no more national debt and no more paying of
interest to hard-driving capitalists; but Van Buren borrowed $34,000,000
in two years to meet the ordinary expenses of his Administration.

The honors of the time were, and have since been, bestowed upon Jackson,
and all the blame of things was, and has since been, laid upon the
shoulders of Van Buren. But the fault was not Van Buren's. A number of
causes had produced this surprising and distressing state of affairs.
After the great success of the Erie and other canals in the East,
Western States entered upon an era of canal building which the richest
of communities could ill have borne. Railroads were beginning to create
markets for Eastern farmers. The Westerners, therefore, sunk millions of
their hard earnings in railways which paralleled their canals or
projected into wildernesses. Between 1830 and 1840 these ventures of the
West, from Michigan to Louisiana, absorbed hundreds of millions of
capital. Illinois borrowed $14,000,000 when her total annual income was
hardly more than $250,000; Mississippi borrowed $12,000,000 on a yearly
income a little less than that of Illinois. The States had mortgaged
their futures for decades to come. This was especially true of Western
communities; but Eastern States like Pennsylvania, Virginia, and South
Carolina were also in debt for similar amounts. Everybody thought the
resources of the United States were inexhaustible; and everybody seemed
willing to tax future generations beyond all precedent in order to
develop these resources.

The depositing of the federal funds in state banks by Jackson had
greatly stimulated speculation. Public interest in banks, already great,
increased enormously. Forty new banks were created in Pennsylvania in a
single year. State banks increased their capital and extended their
operations. In two years the bank notes in circulation increased from
$95,000,000 to $140,000,000; loans and discounts rose from $324,000,000
to $457,000,000. The National Bank, which had curtailed business in
order to embarrass the country and particularly President Jackson,
quickly changed its tactics, and, sailing under a charter from the State
of Pennsylvania, kept pace with its five hundred rivals. To be sure the
Federal Constitution forbade the States to issue bills of credit. But
the States incorporated banking companies which issued the forbidden
notes by the million, and the Supreme Court of the United States, now
that Marshall was dead and the personnel of its membership had undergone
a change, declared the practice lawful.

States indorsed or participated in the proceedings of the banks, the
banks loaned to other corporations or to private individuals on such
security as land, slaves, improvements already made, or the personal
credit of men otherwise deeply in debt. The flood of money was thus,
before 1837, invested in lands and houses or railroads and canals which
could neither pay dividends nor return the principal for several years.
It seemed that when the Federal Government paid the last of its debt,
the States eagerly pursued the opposite principle and created the
greatest debts possible.

Though the people of the United States joined in all these wild
ventures, they were not solely responsible. Europe, especially England,
had been anxious to lend. The Erie Canal had been built upon borrowed
capital, and it had paid good dividends. The old National Bank, now
going out of business, had placed $25,000,000 of its stock in Europe,
and the holders had received most liberal returns. American investments
were quoted as "excellent" by the Baring Brothers of London to their
thousands of customers. And why not? The Federal Government had recently
paid the last dollar of its two huge debts, more than $80,000,000 for
the cost of the Revolution and $110,000,000 for the cost of the War of
1812, and the rate of interest had often been as high as eight per cent.
Was there a similar example in all history? The bad reputation of
1783-1800 for debt-paying had been lived down.

Van Buren estimated the amount of money due by States and corporations
to English creditors at $200,000,000. His estimate was probably not
greatly exaggerated. Certainly as much as $12,000,000 in interest was
due each year to English creditors. The merchants of the great towns
regularly bought their goods on long time, sold them on time to the
shopkeepers of the villages and hamlets, and these in turn sold on
credit to their customers. Not less than $100,000,000 was thus
distributed over the country. It was due any day in London or Liverpool.
The world seemed to "take stock" in the new Republic, particularly when
the returns were large and prompt in appearing. And now that the Federal
Government was not a borrower, the States became the heirs of the
confidence of the capitalists who, not comprehending the difference
between the National and the State Governments in the United States,
expected that the authorities in Washington would bring due pressure to
bear on local authorities that might turn indifferent when crops were

All these things led to an inflated state of things. Jackson had seen
the dangerous tendency, and his specie circular had been applied in 1836
in the hope of mending matters. But the people who bought lands had no
gold or silver. The effect of the circular was to compel Western bankers
to call on their Eastern correspondents for metallic money. All the
specie in the Eastern vaults amounted to only $19,000,000, a sum not in
excess of what it had been twenty years before, when the paper money in
circulation was not half so great. Just as the West asked for more hard
money English bankers and other business men called sharply for payment
of outstanding debts due by leading business men in the East. Both
demands could not be met at the same time. The bubble had been pricked.

To make matters worse, the wheat crop of the Middle States and of the
South failed utterly, and the farmers were compelled to import grain on
credit for the next year's seeding. The cotton output was large, but the
price fell from twenty to ten cents a pound. Corn and meat were
plentiful in the West; the means of transportation were, however,
lacking. There was famine and plenty in the land at the same time.
Business came to a standstill, all forward movements stopped, and the
banks closed their doors.

From a winter of greatest plenty and most amazing expectations the
people, particularly the poor of the cities and mill towns, passed into
a summer and autumn of positive want and starvation. With flour at
twelve dollars a barrel, the New York price, and with wages declining
every day or industrial operations suspended altogether, the lot of the
worker was hard. Riots were of weekly occurrence, and the greatest
business houses of New York, Philadelphia, and even New Orleans, where
cotton was expected to save men, declared themselves bankrupt and closed
their doors. Men who had clamored against Jackson or Biddle in the time
of distress three years before now looked upon that crisis as only a
flurry. Everything seemed out of joint and the future gave no assurance
of speedy recovery. The East, which had condemned the West for their
stay laws against the panic of 1819, now clamored for a federal stay law
and urged Van Buren to suspend the specie circular. The President
refused to offer any relief, and other failures and other risks
followed. Before the summer had well begun every bank in the country
suspended specie payment, and a little later local business men's
associations issued notes or due bills in small denominations which were
accepted as money. East, South, and West the commercial and financial
panic held the country fast in its grip. Speculations fell flat,
obligations were void, and men turned to the simpler forms of life to
regain their equilibrium. Barter took the place of former methods of

People blamed the banks; some cried out that the monopolistic methods of
business had been the cause. The Whigs maintained that the panic and
distress were due to the blunders and crimes of the party in power.
Benton in reply declared that the paper money and stock-jobbing systems
of the last few years had been the cause. Van Buren called Congress
together in extra session in September, 1837, in order, as he said, to
devise means of saving the Government itself from bankruptcy. But he
could not place the blame on the preceding Administration, as his
opponents delighted to do; he only said it was all because of
"over-action in all departments of business." Congress suspended the
distribution of the surplus revenue among the States, issued notes to
the amount of ten million dollars to meet the obligations of the
Government, and took measures for the safety of the public funds in
banks which could not pay their debts. Gradually during the next year
the signs of recovery appeared. Rise of prices in Europe, a good cotton
crop, and the passing of the panicky state of mind enabled the banks to
resume specie payments, and the mills of the East to open their doors.
But the public was in doubt whether the ruin of the National Bank, the
issuing of the specie circular by Jackson, or the lack of ability on the
part of Van Buren had been the cause of the calamities of the year 1837.
And as it took years for men and business houses to regain their former
mutual confidence, there was soreness and hesitation everywhere until
after 1840.

The financial situation was, therefore, the one thing with which Van
Buren had to deal during most of his term. After the emergency measures
had passed, he gave earnest attention to the enacting of a law which
would create responsible agencies in the larger cities for the receipt
and expenditure of the public moneys. The purpose was to avoid
concentration and monopoly such as the National Bank had maintained, and
to keep the control of the finances in the hands of the Government. It
was called the Independent Treasury system. The President pressed the
measure before a divided Congress and without the support of any
concerted or strong public opinion. To the surprise of many, Calhoun,
the bitterest of his enemies, came to his assistance. This meant the
support of most of the cotton and tobacco planters. Yet the measure
failed of passage during the sessions of 1837-38 and 1838-39.

Van Buren did not know how to appeal to the popular heart when powerful
congressional leaders and shrewd business men pressed too hard. He
simply adhered to his Independent Treasury Bill against all opposition,
fair and unfair. A group of conservative Democrats broke away from his
leadership in 1838 and deprived him of a majority; in the next Congress
he was no stronger, and the one measure of reform which he urged failed
to pass before June, 1840. Another legacy of Jackson, his "illustrious
predecessor," was a war with the Seminole Indians, who resisted removal
to the western frontier; and before 1842 the suppression of these
desperate natives and their slave allies, runaways from the Georgia
plantations, cost the Government $40,000,000, most of which had to be
borrowed at high rates of interest.

Even more threatening than the Seminole troubles was the Texas problem.
The last act of Jackson's official life was to recognize the
independence of that aspiring State. But this was only preliminary to
the real purposes of Texas and her agents, who pressed Van Buren in the
summer of 1837 for annexation to the United States; though these same
agents wrote home that if annexation did not succeed, the South would
break away from the Union, and that if it did succeed, the North would
withdraw from the federal compact. So that while Calhoun and his friends
aided the President in his financial measures, they at the same time
importuned him to help the South by adding another pro-slavery State to
the Union. This was not the first time this question had embarrassed a
president. As already seen, Clay had denounced Monroe for giving away
that princely domain; Benton and Van Buren had warred upon Adams and
Clay in 1826-28 for not compelling a restoration, and under this
pressure and that of the South in general, Adams had sought in vain to
purchase Texas; under Jackson the problem was several times taken up,
and as much as $5,000,000 was offered. Still the astute General had
steered clear of trouble when annexation "with war" was offered in 1836.

Van Buren likewise delayed and risked his Southern popularity. Meanwhile
a revolt against the British Government broke out in Canada, and
thousands of Americans along the border, from Maine to Wisconsin, lent
open assistance to their "oppressed" neighbors. Van Buren remained
strictly neutral. With much difficulty was the peace maintained, and at
the expense of many savage attacks upon the Administration for its
un-American policy and lack of sympathy with men who fought for

While the President was seeking to reform the national currency and
restrain the imperialistic tendencies of his countrymen, one great
State, New York, under the leadership of Silas Wright, was showing the
country what could be done locally to make banking safe. In 1829 a law
was enacted compelling every newly chartered bank to contribute a
certain percentage of its income to a common safety fund. The disasters
of 1837 showed these reserves to be too small, and in 1839 every bank in
the State was required to deposit with the Treasury securities enough to
protect all notes to be put into circulation. At the same time any group
of capitalists who would conform to the law might open a bank without
let or hindrance, which had the effect of putting financial operations
on simple business principles, removing the political motive which had
wrought so much damage to innocent depositors. During the next decade
the New York example had great influence, and Massachusetts, Maryland,
South Carolina, and other older States instituted safe and conservative
banking systems.

But while these communities learned slowly the lesson of careful
finance, Michigan, Mississippi, and other States, East and West, hard
pressed by their circumstances and the overwhelming debts which they
piled up till about 1840, repudiated or failed to meet their
obligations. And when suits were brought by domestic or foreign
creditors, state legislatures simply declined to pay and claimed
immunity from federal pressure under the Eleventh Amendment to the
National Constitution. Nor were the resources of the Western communities
equal to the discharge of their onerous burdens. To have attempted to
force upon the people the payment of the debts their leaders had fixed
upon them would have caused wholesale migrations to Wisconsin, Iowa, and
Texas. The people of the West, of the country as a whole, perhaps, were
still in the position of frontiersmen as compared to Europeans. They
needed all the time more capital than they could repay in many years,
and they were not as yet disciplined to the point of bearing heavy

With so much distress in the country and with the Administration
overburdened with problems, Clay, Adams, and Webster organized the
opposition in Congress and throughout the country very much as Van
Buren, Calhoun, and Jackson had done in 1826-28. The President, they
said, was no friend of the people; he had not so much as mentioned their
case in his messages to Congress. He was likened to a sea captain who
seizes the lifeboats on a distressed ship in midocean and, saving
himself and crew, leaves the passengers to the mercies of the angry
waves. Clay said the panic had been due entirely to the ungodly Jackson
and his foolish successor; Webster saw the sole cause of the ills of the
time in the foolhardy policy of the last half-dozen years. John Quincy
Adams never tired of ridiculing the puerile maneuvers of backwoods
politicians whose ignorance amounted almost to high crime. To him the
Independent Treasury Bill was an attempt to separate the Government from
business, as futile as to try to divorce the law from the judges in the
administration of justice.

Business men were appealed to to help avert the further catastrophes
which a Democratic Administration would surely inflict. Distressed
planters were reminded of the low price of cotton, all the friends of
the former National Bank were told to remember the war on the Bank
which had ruined them and the country at the same time. Indignation
meetings were held in the East to denounce Van Buren and the
"Loco-focos," a term of reproach applied generally to the party in
power; Henry Clay made a tour of the Eastern States thanking God that he
had been spared to help in undoing the work of Jackson; Webster
canvassed the West in the hope of restoring the minds of the people to
their wonted sanity and a renewal of the alliance of West and East, on
which alone depended the prospect of good government in the United
States. The Whig party was now a powerful machine, and its leaders would
take the people into their confidence. "The honesty of plain men" became
a favorite expression of the time; and Adams, Clay, and Webster repeated
the experiment of Jackson, Calhoun, and Benton in 1828, in a four-year
campaign against Van Buren. A disinterested philosopher might have said
that it was poetic justice for the persecuted Adams of 1828 to appear in
the rôle of persecutor in 1840.

Though the President was an abler politician than Adams had been in the
former struggle, he was hardly able to parry the blows of Clay and his
Eastern allies, especially after the elections of 1838, when both houses
of Congress were lost to the Administration. Calhoun, Benton, and Silas
Wright made a strong fight on behalf of the Democrats. To the
Independent Treasury measure they added the preëmption and graduation
bills, which commanded almost unanimous support in the West, and at last
secured the passage of all three in June, 1840. Though Clay and his
party waged a powerful opposition through four full years, they had no
definite program to offer. The groups of their organization were as yet
poorly knit together. Their popular appeal was "to drive the Goths and
Vandals" from the capital. The "new Napoleon and his minions," according
to another historical comparison, must give way to the old régime, to
gentlemen "who knew how to govern." And consequently the new alignments
were much the same as those which had supported Adams and Clay in 1828,
the South and West uniting on the "reform" Treasury system and Benton's
land bills, while the East and certain conservative elements of the West
and South indorsed, tentatively, at least, the "American System," or at
least lent willing ears to the eloquence of Clay.

Still the people hardly knew whom to believe, and they grouped
themselves in the different States in a way which seemed unlike the
earlier combinations. Thick-and-thin followers of Van Buren called
themselves Democrats and insisted that they were the disciples of Thomas
Jefferson; the organizers of the opposition to Jackson in his war on the
Bank had claimed to be National Republicans, though they accepted with
pride the name of Whigs after 1836. They asserted also that they were
the followers of the great Virginia democrat; perhaps the historian
would be compelled to deny that either faction was democratic.

As the Democrats were almost unanimously in favor of the renomination of
Van Buren, it was not difficult to manage their convention of that
year. Nor was the platform the occasion of any serious disagreement. It
stated for the first time that the party was opposed to internal
improvements, a protective tariff, and the assumption of the debts of
bankrupt States. In all these the West was much interested. But on the
subject of slavery it was definitely declared that the Federal
Government had no power of interference. For the last time in the
history of the _ante-bellum_ Democracy, the Declaration of Independence
was declared to be an item of the party faith. Van Buren took many risks
in this un-Western program; though the panic of 1837 was doubtless his
heaviest burden, as the Whigs never tired of asserting and repeating.

The Whigs met in convention at Harrisburg in December, 1839. Divided on
the great questions of the day, they feared to nominate their one
masterful leader, and in weak imitation of the Jackson men of 1828
turned to William Henry Harrison, a frontier general of no great ability
or reputation. John Tyler, a Virginia politician of the Calhoun school,
was made the candidate for the Vice-Presidency. On the matter of a
program it was impossible for the Whig groups to agree, and consequently
they offered no platform at all. But the West received notice from the
leaders that in the event of success, the debts of their States would be
laid upon the broad shoulders of the Union and that internal
improvements would be resumed. In the East the restoration of the
National Bank and the renewal of the high tariff schedules of 1832 were
the assurances of men like Webster and Clay. With differences so great
dividing the opposition it was impossible to make a campaign on the
issues of the time, serious as these were acknowledged to be.

The contest which followed was unlike any other in the history of the
Union. "Hard cider," "coon skins," and "log cabins" became the slogans
of the campaign, because once in his life General Harrison had lived in
a cabin and "drunk the beverage of the common people." Van Buren could
not meet such cries. His canvass became a defense, and his followers
half acknowledged their defeat when it was seen that the West rallied to
Harrison. The plain citizen was carried off his feet, and he voted
against the man in the White House who was said to use gold and silver
on his table and dress himself before costly French mirrors. Nor was he
certain in his more serious vein whether after all Jackson had not made
a sad blunder in choosing the New York politician to carry out his
policies. Without real argument or any serious presentation of the
issues the Whigs, appealing to what were considered Western prejudices,
built log cabins on the public squares, wore coonskin caps, and sang Van
Buren out of office to the tune of "Typ and Ty," "Little Van is a
used-up man," and other like vanities.

The result was an overwhelming victory for Harrison and Tyler, the
President carrying only one New England State and Virginia, South
Carolina, Alabama, Arkansas, Missouri, and Illinois, and receiving only
sixty electoral votes out of a total of 294. The popular vote was
2,400,000, almost twice as great as in any previous election. The people
were learning to vote if nothing more. Van Buren and his lieutenants,
including Calhoun, were chagrined and humiliated. The West had returned
the enemies of Jackson to power and, perhaps unintentionally, had
written failure across the work of their "hero." Thus Clay had turned
the backwoodsmen and their methods against the original backwoods
statesman, and brought about a restoration of the old régime. Nicholas
Biddle and all his financial friends rejoiced. Webster and New England
looked once again to a new era of protection; and the internal
improvements men of the West and the up-country, having been overwhelmed
by the panic in their various State undertakings, turned their
expectations once more toward the National Treasury. The manufacturing
and the financial interests had in reality come into control again, and
with the assistance of the plain people of the back-country. Clay had
been the architect of the new structure, while Jackson and Calhoun
mourned alike the defeat of Van Buren.


Edwin M. Shepard's _Life of Martin Van Buren_, in _American Statesmen_
series is the best study of the Van Buren Administration. J. Schouler's
_History of the United Slates_, vol. _IV_; G. S. Callender's _Selections
from the Economic History of the United States_ (1909); G. S.
Callender's _Early Transportation and Banking Enterprises_, in
_Quarterly Journal of Economics_, vol. 17; W. A. Scott's _Repudiation of
State Debts_ (1893), and the biographies and other works cited at the
close of the last chapter will give the reader material for further

Robert Mayo's _Political Sketches of Eight Years in Washington_ (1839);
Mrs. M. B. Smith's _First Forty Years of Washington Society_ (Hunt,
1906); and J. F. H. Claiborne's _The Life and Times of General Sam Dale_
(1860) present most interesting pictures of men and manners. For
railroad, canal, and banking ventures, J. L. Ringwalt, _Development of
Transportation Systems_; W. F. Gephart, _Transportation and Industrial
Development in the Middle West_; J. P. Dunn, _Indiana_, Rufus King,
_Ohio_, T. M. Cooley, _Michigan_, in _American Commonwealths_ series;
Thomas Ford, _History of Illinois_ (1854); J. F. H. Claiborne, _History
of Mississippi_ (1880); W. C. Brewer, _Alabama, Her History, Resources_,
etc. (1872); and J. G. Baldwin, _The Flush Times in Alabama and
Mississippi_ (1853).

                                  CHAPTER VII

                              THE MILITANT SOUTH

William Henry Harrison and the Whig party came to power in 1841 without
a program. The men who had driven Martin Van Buren from office in 1840
were in as much doubt what to do for the country as the Jackson men had
been in 1829. Clay had said during the campaign that he might restore
the United States Bank, and he had said he might not do so; the Eastern
Whigs had declared for a higher tariff in 1842, when the compromise of
1833 would expire, while the Southern Whigs had denied that such a move
would be made; the Western men who had deserted Van Buren for a
log-cabin leader demanded now as ever internal improvements, though
their Southern allies bitterly opposed all such propositions. With
counsels so divided Harrison turned readily to Henry Clay, who shaped
the inaugural and filled the Cabinet with his political friends.
Congress was called in extra session for the last of May, 1841, when an
improvised plan of action would be offered and perhaps enacted into law.
The main items were to be a new National Bank, a higher tariff, and the
distribution among the States of the proceeds of the public land sales.
This would enable States to construct their own public improvements and
at the same time avoid a rupture between Southern and Western Whigs.
Thus the chief items of the old Clay and Adams "American System" was to
be reënacted by a Congress whose majority was none too large and more
than heterogeneous in character.

But before the national legislature met, the President had died and John
Tyler had become the head of the Administration. Virginia politics were
at that time and long after dominated by a state banking system, and
both Virginia and the lower South opposed all forms of tariff
protection. The new President had been nominated by the Whigs in spite
of his political views, and only in the hope that he might carry his
State, in which they had been disappointed. Clay thought, however, that
he could control the Administration, and undertook with the assistance
of the Cabinet to bring all into a harmonious support of his "system."
The law creating the Independent Treasury, for which Jackson and Van
Buren had labored industriously for six years before its final passage,
was promptly repealed. In place of the Independent Treasury there was to
be a National Bank, but the President was reported to be hostile to such
a bank unless it should be located in the District of Columbia, and the
consent of the States should be made necessary before branches could be
established anywhere. Aware of Tyler's scruples on this and other
measures, Clay marshaled his followers in both houses, held his friends
in the Cabinet in his firm grasp, and was reported to have declared:
"Tyler dares not resist me; I will drive him before me." Tyler was not
the man to be driven, and meanwhile Calhoun, Benton, and their friends
were rallying around him in the hope of breaking down once again the
program of Clay.

A bank law was passed. On the 16th of August it was vetoed, and there
ensued another party break very much like that which Calhoun led in
1831. Many Southern Whigs supported the President; Eastern Whigs burned
Tyler in effigy as "the traitor." A second bank bill was passed only to
meet another veto; and the Clay scheme for the distribution of the
proceeds of the land sales, on which he had set his heart, was so
mutilated by amendments that it could not serve the purpose of its
friends. Anger and denunciation were the order of the day in Washington.
Clay called a conference of the members of Tyler's Cabinet early in
September, and advised all to resign at once in order to isolate their
chief. The advice was followed by all save Webster, who retained his
post and otherwise refused to accept the dictation of the Kentucky
leader. Calhoun, Henry A. Wise, William C. Rives, and other leaders of
Congress applauded the President and Webster. Congress adjourned on
September 13 in the worst possible humor. Excitement now ran high
throughout the country. Whig meetings were held everywhere, some to
denounce, some to defend the Virginian President. The congressional
elections came on and the voters divided sharply. But the Democrats won,
which meant that the next Congress would be deadlocked--the Senate Whig,
and the House Democratic. Under these circumstances Tyler gathered about
him a Cabinet to his own liking and planned a forward step in the
national policy. At the regular session of Congress a protective tariff
law which restored many of the high duties of 1832 was enacted. Tyler
gave his assent, perhaps in the hope of holding his New England friends
like Webster. In view of the fact that the next Congress would be at
least half anti-tariff, this move on the part of the Whigs was resented
in the South, where leaders like Robert Barnwell Rhett still spoke
openly of secession in case the old protectionist policy should be

The lines were being drawn for the next presidential race. Clay came
back to Congress in December, 1841, deeply resentful toward the
President and displeased at Webster. Having carried through Congress the
tariff bill already mentioned, he rose on March 31 to offer "the last
motion I shall ever make in this body," and to read his farewell address
after the manner of his great antagonist Jackson, who had sent to
Congress a similar message on his retirement in March, 1837. It was an
affecting scene as the able and dramatic orator prayed "the most
precious blessings upon the Senate," even upon Calhoun, who at the close
extended his hand for the first time in several years. "Sober old
Senators as well as ladies in the galleries shed tears at the scene";
yet it was known that Clay would seek the Presidency two years later.
Calhoun, likewise, retired "forever" from the august legislative
assembly, twelve months later, the better to lay his plans for the
Democratic nomination in 1844. Though the South was not ready to unite
in support of its greatest statesman, its leaders were ready to adopt
his views and carry out his policy. The South, with its cotton, tobacco,
and sugar plantations yielding their increasing annual returns, was
preparing for another effort at getting control of the National
Government. And changes of sentiment as well as economic development
favored her in the struggle.

In Virginia the reforms of 1829 had been inadequate. The slavery problem
was still a burning question, and the Nat Turner insurrection of 1831,
in which a few slaves rose against their masters and killed many men,
women, and children, forced a reconsideration. Again the difficult
problem was declared insoluble. Thomas R. Dew, a professor of political
science in William and Mary College, gave the deciding counsel in
elaborate testimony before a committee of the legislature, which was
enlarged and published in book form in May, 1832. He contended that
slavery was a positive good; that negroes could not live in the South
except in a state of bondage; and that for the State of Virginia, at
least, it was a most profitable institution. The time had passed, he
contended, for men to believe or teach the fallacies of the Declaration
of Independence. Society, certainly Southern society, was taking on a
stratified form in which all men had their definite places; and the
North, too, was fast drifting in the same direction, because of the
influence of their growing industries, in which it was essential that
some should be masters of great plants and direct the labor of thousands
of people. Few books ever influenced Southern life so much as did this
little word of clear reasoning and convincing statistics.

A year later Calhoun was offering the same arguments in the United
States Senate; South Carolina had already come in a practical way to the
same conclusion. North Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, and
Louisiana accepted the teaching that slavery was a beneficent social
arrangement. In Kentucky and Tennessee, where James G. Birney and John
Rankin had long worked for gradual emancipation, sentiment rapidly
crystallized about the same dogma. Southern anti-slavery leaders
emigrated to Ohio during the next few years, "leaving Ephraim joined to
his idols"; and Southern men in Congress now replied with increasing
earnestness to the petitions which came from Northern abolitionists. In
1837 it was decided not to receive such petitions, and John Quincy Adams
was given his great theme for agitation; the United States mails were
also closed to abolitionist literature intended for Southern
distribution. The representatives of the great region which stretched
from Baltimore to New Orleans and extended from the coast to the
mountains, united almost to a man in defense of "the institutions of the
South," and he who offered argument or example to the contrary was then
unwelcome and later compelled to hold his tongue or emigrate.

Calhoun now became the undisputed leader of the plantation interests of
the South, and few men were better fitted for the great commission. A
keen and able debater and an enthusiastic Southerner, a combination in
himself of the up-country ideals and the low-country purposes, he had
become the idol of South Carolina. Conciliatory in manner and pure in
all his public and private life, he won the respect and friendship of
the best men in the North, like the Lowells and Winthrops of
Massachusetts, and of Senators Allen, Hannegan, Breese, and the Dodges
of the Northwest. Devoted to the ideal of a great American Union which
he had made strong at the close of the second war with England, he was
willing always to yield something to the West if only his "one
institution" be left alone. Badly treated by Jackson and Van Buren, he
had yet forgiven and joined hands with them both in 1840, in the hope
that the power of Clay and his Eastern allies might be broken. In
Congress and out he was the leader of the South as that section began to
gird her loins for the fight over tariff, slavery, and expansion in

While the South was coming to one opinion on the great question of
slavery, the West had been reviving her old ambitions and claims for
more lands. So long as there was plenty of free lands and wide
wildernesses, the Westerner felt that the American Republic was a free
country; but when these began to fail he imagined himself hemmed in and
stifled. In 1812 he had demanded Canada and Florida. He secured only the
latter in 1819, and that after giving up Texas. The ink was hardly dry
on the parchment of the treaty of that year before leading Westerners
began their campaign for the "reannexation" of Texas. Stephen Austin,
who settled in Texas, and Sam Houston, who deserted his wife for a home
on the distant Southwestern frontier, kept the question alive. Thousands
of Southerners and Westerners poured into the new cotton region between
1828 and 1836, and in the latter year they fought with the Mexicans the
battle of San Jacinto, which gave Texas her freedom. A new American
Republic with a pro-slavery constitution was speedily organized. Though
Van Buren evaded the issue, Calhoun and the South urged immediate

There was thus a Southern call to the isolated President in 1842 to take
up the Texas problem. Moreover, Virginia under the apportionment of 1841
lost five Representatives in the National House; South Carolina's number
fell from nine to seven. North Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, and
Georgia barely held their own. The older South was distinctly losing in
the national race, despite the three-fifths rule on slavery. The
Southwest gained some members, but the Northwest was growing faster. It
was time for the South to act if she was to maintain her position in the
country. In making up his Cabinet in the autumn of 1841, and again in
filling the vacancies that occurred from time to time, the President
selected men who favored expansion in the Southwest. The leaders of the
Administration in the House of Representatives were ex-Governor Gilmer
and Henry A. Wise, of Virginia, and the spokesmen of the South generally
joined these in demanding the immediate annexation of Texas as a
Southern measure. Calhoun, though not speaking so often, was the real
leader of this cause in the Senate, and he constantly urged upon his
friends the necessity of this acquisition as a distinct aid to his

Nearly all the West favored this Southern proposition; but an equally
important matter to them was the occupation of Oregon. In Ohio,
Michigan, and northern Illinois there was some indifference as to Texas,
but none on the subject of Oregon. The vast region stretching from the
forty-second parallel of north latitude to Alaska, and embracing an
empire in itself, was held jointly with England, whose fur traders had
actually occupied the country on the northern side of the Columbia
River. England desired to hold the promising region. Under the agreement
of 1818, renewed in 1828, either country was to give one year's notice
of a purpose to abandon joint control, and, should the relation with
England be dissolved, the stronger party would doubtless obtain the
better part of the territory. The people of the Northwest under radical
leadership soon learned to demand all Oregon; English fur interests
understood the situation well, and they pressed their Government to
seize all the territory along the Pacific to the Bay of California. And
English relations with Mexico were such that Lower California was apt to
be added to Oregon in case of a break with the United States.

In the East there had been reason for increasing irritation between the
two Governments. British public opinion had been distinctly unfriendly
since the Canadian insurrection of 1837-38, when so many Americans gave
assistance to the insurgents. And this unfriendliness was fed by the
ill-concealed desire of the people of the West for the annexation of
Canada to the United States. When the American ship Caroline, which had
been assisting the Canadian insurrectionists, was seized and destroyed
by the English on Lake Erie, an American citizen was killed. This was
amicably arranged; but in 1840 a certain Alexander McLeod, then in New
York, avowed that he had killed the American and was promptly seized by
the state authorities and put on trial for his life. McLeod now claimed
that he had done the deed in obedience to orders, and the British
Minister came to his assistance. Officers of the American State
Department took the same view, but they were helpless, and for a time it
seemed that one of the States would put to death as a murderer a man
whom both England and the United States recognized to be innocent. War
seemed imminent, but as so often happens in Anglo-Saxon procedure, a way
out of the legal _impasse_ was found in a fictitious _alibi_, and McLeod
was acquitted.

When Sir Robert Peel became the head of the English Government in 1841
he sent, as Minister to Washington, Lord Ashburton, one of the Baring
Brothers who had had such large business relations with many of the
States and with the old National Bank. Ashburton and Webster were
personal friends, and they were likely to find a solution to other
important and pressing problems engaging the attention of both
countries. One of these disputes had to do with the suppression of the
nefarious African slave trade, which still flourished in spite of the
most stringent of laws, national and international. The difficulty lay
in the enforcement of law. The South did not regard slavery as an
unmixed evil, and hence Southern Presidents had not been overzealous of
invoking the severe law against the slave trade. England stood ready to
enforce her laws, but then the traders would raise the American flag.
This necessitated the exercise of the obsolete right of search of
suspected vessels, if anything was to be done. But the people of the
United States resented the exercise of the right, and Northern statesmen
were also loath to allow this. To obviate all difficulty the two
Governments agreed in 1842 to maintain a joint naval patrol of the
African coast. The South was not quite pleased, and a great many people
of the West were displeased that Webster had yielded the right of search
in disguise, as it was thought.

At the same time a matter of larger importance to the North, the
settlement of the long-disputed boundary between Maine and Nova Scotia,
was pending. Since 1838 there had been quarrels and actual encounters
along the northeastern boundary, which had won the name of "the
Aroostook War." Both Maine and the National Congress had appropriated
money to maintain American rights on the border, and here again there
was reason to fear war. Webster and Ashburton took up the problem and by
mutual concessions came to a fair but very unpopular agreement. They
also settled outstanding disputes concerning the long boundary between
the Great Lakes and the Rocky Mountains.

But the question of dividing Oregon was left untouched even by these
friendly diplomats. Nor could they do more than discuss the critical
Creole trouble, which just now came to complicate the relations of both
peoples, evidently desirous of avoiding war. The Creole was a vessel
engaged in the domestic slave trade. In 1841 this ship, bound for New
Orleans, was seized by the slaves on board, who killed its crew and
carried it into the port of Nassau. The local courts punished some of
the negroes as murderers and set the others free. Speaking for the
American Government, Webster demanded of England an apology and
compensation for the slaves. Ashburton defended his country stoutly and
refused satisfaction. Again public opinion, at least Southern opinion,
was greatly excited, but nothing was done about the Creole case until
1853, when it was submitted to arbitration, and compensation was allowed
the owners of the slaves.

Thus the Webster-Ashburton Treaty of 1842 was a settlement of some
threatening difficulties and a tacit compromise or ignoring of others.
It served the useful purpose of keeping the peace between kindred
peoples. The Oregon and Texas questions were left open, and these were
assuming more dangerous forms with the passage of time.

This served to direct attention to the Pacific Coast and even the Far
East, where New England merchants and shipowners had long driven a
profitable trade. President Tyler sent Commodore Jones to the Pacific to
protect American interests; he proposed to send a commissioner to China
in the hope of aiding American commerce there, and he began to consult
members of Congress about the possibility of obtaining Texas,
California, and Oregon all in treaties with Mexico and England. He
offered to send Webster to London to conduct the negotiations, and at
his instance John Quincy Adams wrote Edward Everett, the American
Minister to England, that he might resign and go to China to do pioneer
work for New England interests. The Webster-Ashburton Treaty was to be
followed by a greater one, securing to the United States the coveted
expansion southwest, west, and northwest. Thus Calhoun and his extreme
Southerners, Benton and his ardent imperialist followers, and the
radical Northwest were all to be satisfied at a single stroke of state,
and Webster, the New Englander, was to be the happy instrument and
perhaps become President in consequence.

Everett refused to resign, and Webster had promised his Whig friends to
leave the State Department. Tyler did not despair; when the great New
Englander retired in 1842, like Clay, to private life, he invited Hugh
S. Legaré, of Charleston, to the vacant place. A year later Abel P.
Upshur succeeded to the office. All the while the President was seeking
to guide the Administration into other channels than the old ones of
tariff, bank, and internal improvements.

The Texan envoys to Washington repeatedly urged unofficially the
annexation of their country, which had fallen into a state of
semi-bankruptcy, and whose governor, Sam Houston, was making overtures
for English protection as an alternative to failure to get a favorable
hearing in Washington. Southern States petitioned for annexation, while
Middle Westerners met in a convention at Cincinnati in August, 1843, and
demanded the immediate seizure of Texas and prompt occupation of Oregon.
Thousands of emigrants left Missouri during the summer of 1843 for the
Columbia Valley, under the encouragement of Senator Benton and for the
purpose of holding the country against English fur traders or more
permanent settlers. Under all this pressure the Administration let it be
known in Congress that at least Texas would be annexed. Upshur reopened
negotiations with the Texan envoy in Washington. Immediately John Quincy
Adams protested, declaring the "Confederacy" to be dissolved in case
Tyler's "nefarious" scheme should be consummated; but the President
continued to press the Texan negotiations.

When the treaty with the new republic was about concluded, Upshur was
accidentally killed by the explosion of a gun on the ship Princeton.
Calhoun, whose ardent candidacy for the Democratic nomination had
failed, was called to the State Department to take up the unfinished
work. Meanwhile the campaigns of the two great parties were already far
advanced. Clay was the acknowledged candidate of the Whigs, and Van
Buren had obtained the pledged support of two thirds of the delegations
to the next Democratic Convention, which was to meet in Baltimore in
May, 1844. Instinctively dreading new issues, Van Buren arranged a visit
to Jackson in the early spring, and on his return he called on Clay at
Lexington, Kentucky, where it seems to have been agreed that the two
candidates should eventually eliminate the Texas proposition from the
platforms of the two great parties. On April 20, when Clay was in
Raleigh, North Carolina, and Van Buren was at his home at Lindenwald,
New York, public letters were given out by both leaders. Both advised
against discussing the one thing everybody was discussing. The
simultaneous appearance of these formal statements, each advising the
same thing, caused a national sensation. Men thought that the two
candidates had agreed beforehand what the people should not do. In
Virginia, South Carolina, and Mississippi, where Texas feeling ran high,
Democratic opinion could not be restrained, and meetings were called to
reconsider the instructions of their delegations to the Baltimore
Convention; nor were the Southern Whigs less anxious about the outcome,
though the party as a whole acquiesced in Clay's wish that Texas should
be eliminated from their forthcoming platform.

At this point Robert J. Walker, Senator from Mississippi, a shrewd
little man who had gone to the Southwest eighteen years before to make
his fortune, assumed the management of the Democratic party. A bold land
speculator and an able lawyer, connected with the powerful Dallas and
Bache families in Pennsylvania, he quickly rose to a commanding position
in his State and was sent to the United States Senate, where he soon
made himself felt as the most radical representative of Southern and
Western interests, urging the rapid removal of the Indians beyond the
western frontiers, free homesteads for all who would go West, and the
immediate annexation of Texas. An intimate friend of Van Buren, a
persistent opponent of Calhoun, and a rival of Benton for national
honors, Walker published on Jackson Day, January 8, 1844, a letter to
the public which was immediately reprinted in the newspapers of the
South and West, and which in pamphlet form had a very wide circulation.
In this letter he came out boldly for the "reannexation of Texas and the
reoccupation of Oregon,"--all Oregon. His rhetorical language and his
defiance of England gained the public ear on both Texas and Oregon,
while his shrewd suggestions of commercial expansion in the Pacific won
powerful support in New York and Boston. But the greatest stroke of this
publication was the apparent Southern demand for all Oregon, and before
the Van Buren-Clay "self-denying ordinances" appeared, Walker was
forging the union of South and West on the proposition, reannexation of
Texas and reoccupation of Oregon, and maneuvering in Washington for what
was later called the "bargain of the Baltimore Convention." Walker's
relations with the Pennsylvania leaders gave him a strong position in
that great Democratic community, and he soon secured the support of
Thomas Ritchie, the master politician in Virginia. When the Democrats
met, late in May, the "little Senator" was in perfect control. He
renewed and vitalized the rule of the Democratic party whereby the
candidate must secure two thirds of all votes cast in order to receive
the nomination. He procured the passage of this resolution by a mere
majority vote, and thus Van Buren, who had a majority of the delegates
instructed to vote for him, was deprived of the leadership of the party.
The Walker slogan, "All of Texas, all of Oregon," was adopted by the
convention, and James K. Polk, formerly Speaker of the House of
Representatives, was nominated for the Presidency. Walker's
brother-in-law, George M. Dallas, a Pennsylvania protectionist, was
nominated for the Vice-Presidency. It was but a few days before the
Northwestern men indicated the trend of events by giving every assurance
of their support and adding to the campaign cry of Walker the
"fifty-four-forty-or-fight" slogan which was heard on every stump from
June till November.

Van Buren was humiliated and eliminated from the counsels of the party;
Clay laughed at his "dark-horse" competitor, of whom he affected never
to have heard; Calhoun, the legitimate beneficiary of the Texas
propaganda, joined Walker with heart and soul and aided greatly in the
management of the campaign. A new Democratic régime--the South and West
coöperating--had been founded. This second coalition aimed at Clay and
the East resembled very strikingly that of 1828. And new issues had been
injected into the national discussion. A rapid extension of the national
domain to the Rio Grande, to the Pacific, and to 54° 40' of north
latitude in the Far Northwest was opposed to Clay's well-worn program of
a protective tariff, national bank, and internal improvements.

Meanwhile Calhoun and Tyler completed their treaty with Texas and
submitted it to the Senate, where it was held in suspense until after
the meeting of the conventions. Tyler, after some hesitation, gave his
support to Polk and Dallas. Calhoun suppressed uprisings against the new
leadership in South Carolina, where strong doubt prevailed as to the
purposes of Walker and Dallas with reference to the tariff. The old
statesman, isolated though he was, thought that if the South and West
could be held together the future would be secure. He took pleasure in
the belief that "this is the end of Clay," who had so long troubled the
national waters, while the politicians of the new coalition assured him
that he would succeed Polk in 1848. Webster said little during the
campaign; New England was divided by the promises of a great commercial
expansion and the annexation of Oregon. The election of Polk and Dallas
justified the bold moves of the Baltimore Convention. The scheme of
Tyler, looking to the annexation of Texas, California, and Oregon, was
now to be put into effect, even at the risk of war with England, whence
serious warnings had been coming since the new national purpose became

After years of uncertainty and deadlock, the country was now prepared
for a forward movement, and though Polk was not her ideal statesman, the
people rallied with fair unanimity to his standard. The new
Administration would represent the new Democratic party--a resolute
South and an ardent West. And the President-elect, simple and direct in
all his ways, was determined to carry out the purposes of his
supporters, namely, set the country upon a career of expansion hitherto
unparalleled in its history.

In Illinois, Missouri, and throughout the South the demand was
well-nigh unanimous that the disputed region along the Rio Grande should
be held as against Mexico, and that California and Oregon should be
seized and colonized. Cass, the older, and Douglas, the younger leader
of the Northwest, were agreed in these extreme demands; even Benton, the
disappointed friend of Van Buren, found compensation in the proposed
Pacific frontier, while a powerful group of Southerners led by Governor
Gilmer, of Virginia, Robert Barnwell Rhett, of South Carolina, William
L. Yancey, of Alabama, and Jefferson Davis, of Mississippi, took up the
program of Calhoun and pressed it almost daily upon Congress and the
country. The South was about to resume control of the national fortunes.

In that region, where cotton was king, and tobacco, sugar, and rice were
powerful allies, a unique civilization had grown up. The plantation was
the model, and the patriarchal master of slaves the ideal character
which the ambitious poor imitated everywhere. The elegant life of the
colonial plantation houses, which adorned the banks of the winding
rivers of the old South in the days of the Revolution, had gradually
moved westward and southwestward until the larger tobacco area of the
Piedmont region extended from Petersburg, Virginia, to Greensboro, North
Carolina, and from the falls of the rivers to the slopes of the Blue
Ridge. Instead of running away from their slaves, as John Randolph had
feared Southern gentlemen would be compelled to do, the tobacco planters
found their business increasingly prosperous as the great cotton area
south of them opened larger markets for their crops and higher prices
for their surplus negroes. Even the wheat-growers of Virginia and
Maryland became again prosperous when the great canals and the improved
turnpikes reached the valley of Virginia and opened still wider areas of
rich lands to the Richmond and Baltimore markets. The plantation form of
life penetrated the high lands of Virginia almost to the Tennessee
border, and slavery was fastening its hold upon the up-country people
who had formerly been hostile.

[Illustration: Tobacco Areas in 1840]

[Illustration: Cotton Areas in 1840]

But the vast cotton region, embracing the better part of middle and
eastern North Carolina and the accessible lands of the lower South to
Eastern Texas, and extending over most of the Mississippi Valley to St.
Louis, was the heart of the South, which supported the Polk
Administration and waged the war upon Mexico soon to begin. In this fine
country, men of ability made fortunes in a few years and learned to
imitate the life of the old southern manor houses. Forests were cleared
away in winter by the sturdy hands of slaves, and new fields were opened
to cotton culture each spring to supply the places of those that had
been rapidly worn down by unscientific methods of agriculture. The
cabins which made the homes of well-to-do men in the Jeffersonian epoch
gave way to substantial frame houses with massive columns and wide
verandas, with great hallways and broad banquet-rooms, which so much
delighted the heart of the planter of Calhoun's day. In a warm climate
like that of the cotton region the object of the builder was always to
attain cool recesses and retired gardens, where the social life of the
time displayed itself.

The houses were built on hilltops covered with primeval oaks, which cast
a dense shade over all. Sometimes stone or brick walls protected the
premises against the outer world, and wide entrances, guarded on either
side by sculptured lions or tigers, gave a dignity and a splendor which
reminded one of the estates of English noblemen. In the rear of these
pretentious and sometimes beautiful houses were the rows of negro
cabins, with their little gardens for the raising of vegetables and the
ranges for chickens, as dear to the palates of negro slaves as to those
of visiting clergymen. The barns and carriage houses completed the
outfit. Where hundreds of bales of cotton and thousands of barrels of
corn were grown annually, there would be driving or saddle horses for
the master's family and many Kentucky mules for the work of the fields;
and a plantation took on the appearance of a busy colony in a new
country. Sixty to a hundred negroes were regarded as the best labor unit
for profitable agriculture. Of these there would be a few house servants
trained in all the intricacies of patriarchal hospitality and courtesy.
The carriage driver and keeper of the stables, sometimes clad in the
extra dignity of a special livery and a tall silk hat, a tyrant to all
the little negroes, but an obsequious flatterer to those who were
welcome at the master's house, was perhaps the most envied man of the
estate. To see this matchless son of Africa mounted on the high seat of
an old-fashioned English carriage, as he drove his prancing horses to
the front door of the "great house" and asked if all were ready for
church, was to get a glimpse of the old South itself. The boasted
freedom of "poor white trash" or of "impudent free issue negroes" had no
attractions to him who enjoyed these high prerogatives.

The master who was responsible for the multitudinous life of the
plantation, arbiter of the fortunes, sometimes, of a thousand men, was
usually conscious of his power and, when "times were good," kind to his
dependents. He liked to see his negroes fat and happy, for a "likely
slave" was as good as money in the bank. Accustomed to the exercise of
authority, he was apt to be a member of the county court, the actual
governing agency of the old South, and as such he was always "squire."
From the county court he went to the state legislature, where he and his
fellow planters made the laws of these sovereign States of the old
régime. From local magistrate to chief executive the Southern community
was governed by the owners of slaves, and the great men whom they chose
to speak for the South in Congress or to advise the President and his
Cabinet or to sit upon the benches of the federal courts were invariably
masters of plantations, trained from early youth to the exercise of
authority and accustomed to receive the homage of their neighbors. It
was a mighty social and economic organization which had grown up in and
spread over the richer lands of South and West, as far as the borders of
Mexico and the valleys of the Ohio and Missouri. The wheat and tobacco
growers, the rice and sugar planters were allied to the more powerful
cotton lords, and, though there were party differences, all spoke the
same voice in the national life. Of the five or six millions of southern
white people in 1845 only seven or eight thousand were great plantation
masters, though some three hundred thousand were either owners of slaves
or members of the privileged families--a larger proportion than usual
for a favored class, but still a small number when compared to the total
population of the country which was, from 1845 to 1860, controlled by

As was natural, the professional classes of the South, the lawyers,
clergymen, physicians, and teachers, were in close alliance with the
planters, their callings and their incomes being directly dependent on
them. A successful professional man soon became a master and usually
retired to a country seat. If a poor but capable young man gave promise
of power and leadership he was soon accepted by his dominant neighbors
and became a son-in-law of a privileged family; if a preacher rose to
fame doubting or even condemning the institutions of the South, he was
apt to find a way to change his views and to become a part of the system
before he reached his mature years. The articulate South was, therefore,
in economic and social life a unit in 1845, and this unit was the
strongest group in the country as a whole. Its demand for expansion
towards the southwest was based upon the common desire, the common law
of growth, and this growth was the only means of winning new votes in
Congress and in the electoral college. It was the same motive which
actuated the farmers of the Northwest and the commercial leaders of
New England when they demanded of the Federal Government the seizure of
Oregon or the protection of ships upon the ocean.

[Illustration: Wheat Areas in 1840]

If the planter and dominant element of the South urged Polk and Walker
onward in their course and gave power to Calhoun, the greater masses of
non-slaveholding Southerners were hardly less enthusiastic. The earlier
jealousy and fear of the planters had everywhere weakened as the new
lands of the South and West gave opportunity to the more ambitious to
rise in the social and economic scale. The sons of small farmers and
landless men in the old South had built the cotton kingdom of the lower
South, and were now drawing aristocratic Virginia and the Carolinas into
a close union with the new region. The widening of the area of slavery
was equivalent to the opening of a social safety valve to the older and
stratifying life of the South. Young men who had been hostile to slavery
at home became friendly allies in a new environment. Thus the small
farmers became enthusiastic supporters of the great machine of which
slavery was the base.

Not only so, the growers of corn and wheat in the remote hills and
mountains of the South, the men who distilled their grain into strong
drink, those who raised pigs or cotton a hundred or two hundred miles
west of the tobacco and cotton belts, could always find a market in the
plantation towns where calicos, "store-clothes," and trinkets could be
had for themselves and families. The long trains of quaint, covered
tobacco wagons which wound their way over rough roads from the
mountains to the black belt carried whiskey or other up-country products
to the plantations; the droves of mules, cattle, or hogs which poured
into the Carolinas and the Gulf region from East Tennessee and Kentucky
were bonds of attraction between the planters and the non-slaveholding
elements too powerful to be ignored. And as time passed the legislatures
under planter control built better highways and projected railways into
the richer sections of the interior, which invariably made allies of
these new economic communities, and gradually slavery followed in the
wake of the new channels of communication.

The most helpless of the Southern groups were the poorer farmers, who
lived on the semi-sterile lands which the planters refused to occupy or
in the pine barrens of the eastern Carolinas, and the landless class
which hung on to the skirts of slavery. Unambitious, ignorant, and
improvident, frequently the "ne'er-do-wells" of the old families,
ignored by the wealthy and spurned by the slaves, who gave them the name
of "poor white trash," their lot was hard, indeed. They earned a few
dollars a year at odd jobs, raised a few hogs or at most a bale or two
of cotton, and lived in cabins little better than those occupied by the
negroes. Their children were numerous, without educational advantages,
and accustomed to the poor and meager cultural life of an outcast class.
Their outlook was no better than that of their parents. Barefoot,
half-clad, yet alert and agile, hating negroes and fearing the masters,
these "Anglo-Saxons" offered the problem of the South. Unaccustomed to
independent voting, they did not endanger the existing order, and even
when they were aroused to a sense of their position, their ignorance and
dependence and prejudices prevented them from organizing in
self-defense. They usually followed their economic superiors, and
learned to denounce the tariff, internal improvements, and "scheming
Yankees" as roundly as did their wealthy neighbors.

Still, life in the South was in the open; the joys and the sports of the
people were those of healthy rural communities. The well-to-do and even
the poorer classes lived on horseback, bet on the races, and
participated in the rough-and-tumble games of the court days. The
wealthy did not refuse all relations with "the people" on such
occasions. The planter knew and called familiarly by name every man in
his part of the county, and the magistrates who made up the courts of
the people exercised a kindly patriarchal authority over their
"inferiors," the dependent whites. There were few occupants of jails or
penitentiaries; poorhouses were often tenantless, and asylums for the
insane were not numerous or crowded. Beggars and tramps were unknown.
Judged by the facts of life the system of slavery and large proprietors
was not so bad as it appeared; and as the South came into full
self-consciousness, say with the inauguration of Polk and Dallas, the
problems of adjustment of the different economic groups, of providing
better educational facilities for the poorer classes, and of meeting
certain religious and social requirements of the slaves themselves, were
fully recognized by the masters, and beginnings of improvement in all
these matters were already making.

In nothing was this more evident than in Southern religious life. The
South which followed Jefferson was largely indifferent to religious
dogmas of all kinds. Most of the greater leaders had been deists rather
than Christians; nor had they suffered for these opinions at the hands
of the people. Calhoun's Unitarianism had in no way retarded his
political career. But before 1830 a change was taking place. The stout
Presbyterianism of the up-country forced the retirement of one of the
professors of the University of Virginia, in its earlier years, and it
compelled the resignation of President Cooper of the University of South
Carolina, in 1836, because of his denial of the inspiration of the
Pentateuch. The Presbyterians had grown powerful and wealthy; they
asserted their influence in Virginia and South Carolina, and they were
already recognized as leaders in North Carolina, Tennessee, and
Kentucky. What this denomination did was applauded by the more numerous
Baptists and Methodists, whose membership was as yet too poor to command
the influence of their rivals.

Before 1844, however, these great religious organizations in the South,
with a combined membership of nearly a million, received full
recognition. With a small-farmer and landless membership they had
opposed slavery and the whole aristocratic system before 1820, but as
the years passed, tobacco and cotton culture made many of them wealthy
and opened the way to all who were ambitious to rise. At once the
official attitude began to change. The preachers ceased first to
denounce "the institution," and finally without offense became
slave-owners themselves. The clergy's stern rebukes of fashion, of
dancing, and of "the wearing of fine raiment" ceased or lost its effect.
Presbyterians had long believed in an educated ministry, and when they
forced their influence into political life, they were already friendly
to the dominant ideas of the South. Now the Baptists and Methodists
built colleges for the training of young ministers, and preaching in
their simple churches was made to conform to the canons of good taste.
Throughout the South the churches became the allies of the existing
economic and social order, and they presented a solid front to those who
proposed to discipline men for holding other men in bondage. Their
clergy formulated a strong Biblical and patriarchal defense of the
South. Slavery, from being an institution to be lamented as an evil,
became a blessing sustained by the Holy Scriptures, according to the
ablest ministers of God.

When the Northern branches of these churches found how completely their
Southern brethren had yielded to the powerful social pressure of their
local life, a vigorous attempt was made to correct the tendency. It
failed, and in 1844-45 the Baptists of the East and those of the upper
Northwest refused to coöperate with Southern churches which insisted on
the right to send out missionaries who owned slaves. A Southern Baptist
Church was the immediate result. In the same year, 1844, the Methodists
of the East and upper West refused to recognize the ministrations of a
bishop who owned slaves, and a break-up of the church followed. The
Methodist Episcopal Church, South, was organized at Louisville the
following year. The Presbyterians and Episcopalians had become so
completely reconciled to the aristocratic life which slavery connoted
that they sustained no serious breach in their ranks. In the North as
well as in the South they accepted slavery. A notable result of these
breaks in the Baptist and Methodist churches was the rapid increase of
membership of both in the South. Within a period of ten years the
Southern Baptists were as powerful as the American Baptists had been in
1844. The same is true of the Methodists, and what happened in the South
was paralleled in the North. Pro-slavery churches in the South and
anti-slavery churches in the North seemed to be required by the people.
Revivals, educational improvements, and missionary zeal were the fruits
of the "reformation." Politicians like Calhoun, who watched and
counseled these peaceful schisms, urged that the Union must in due time
likewise break into pieces; but the great economic forces of the country
were as yet too strong; common markets, interlocking transportation
systems, and the extraordinary prosperity which followed the Polk régime
defeated the wishes of those who thought that two confederations within
the area of the United States would be better than one.

Thus, when Polk took up the forward program which had been outlined at
Baltimore, and which was to antiquate the "American System" over which
Clay and Jackson and their respective groups had fought so bitterly
since 1824, the South was rapidly crystallizing into a solid section
with definite ideas and purposes. The plantation owners were in full
command; the older and small-farmer element was falling into line behind
their pro-slavery leaders; the social and religious life had become
orthodox and stratified; and the clergy, who now preached acceptably to
great masses of people, were, like those of New England, in full
sympathy with the dominant economic interests of their time. The
immediate future of the South was fairly certain, and Southern leaders
assumed a militant tone indicative of the wishes of their people.


Justin H. Smith's _Annexation of Texas_ (1911) and G. P. Garrison's
_Westward Extension_ (1906), in _American Nation_ series, give full and
trustworthy accounts of the Texas movement; while Lyon G. Tyler's _Times
of the Tylers_ (1884); C. H. Ambler's _Life of Thomas Ritchie_ (1913);
J. W. DuBose's _Life of William L. Yancey_ (1892); and J. F. H.
Claiborne's _Life and Correspondence of John A. Quitman_ (1860), supply
abundant material showing the temper and purposes of the different parts
of the South in 1840. U. B. Phillips's _The Plantation and Frontier_
(1909) is an excellent source-book for the period, and the Adams
_Memoir_, Clay _Correspondence_ (Colton), Calhoun _Correspondence_
(Jameson), and Mrs. A. M. Coleman's _The Life of John J. Crittenden_
(1871) are most useful for these years. The debates of Congress for the
period of 1833 to 1873 are found in the _Congressional Globe_ and
_Appendices_. For the philosophy of slavery and the Southern social
system of which slavery was the basis read _The Pro-Slavery Argument_
(1852), containing Thomas R. Dew's and James H. Hammond's writings on
the subject.

                                  CHAPTER VIII

                                WAR AND CONQUEST

The treaty which Upshur and Calhoun negotiated with the Texan envoys in
the spring of 1844 was presented to the Senate in April, and held in
committee until after the two party conventions had met in Baltimore.
The Whigs condemned it, as has been noted, and the Democrats accepted
it. It was a mere matter of form, then, for the Whig Senate to reject
the treaty which had become in a great measure the platform of their
opponents. When Congress reassembled in December the result of the
election had made it plain that Calhoun and Walker, and not Clay and Van
Buren, represented the wishes of the people, though the majority of the
popular vote was exceedingly small.

Tyler seemed anxious to hasten the work of annexation, and he
recommended the accomplishment of his purpose by joint resolution of the
two houses of Congress. Benton, who disliked Tyler and hated Calhoun,
and who had opposed the adoption of the treaty in the preceding spring,
now gave his influence to the Administration, and during the closing
hours of the session the House and the Senate passed the joint
resolution making Texas a State by narrow majorities. There was
widespread opposition to the annexation of new territory, especially
pro-Southern territory, by the new method. Joint resolutions in State
legislatures that were evenly divided were not unknown; but for Congress
to evade a plain rule of the Constitution requiring two thirds of the
Senate by a mere majority of both houses was denounced as the rankest
usurpation. Without serious concern as to public opinion in the East or
great deference to the President-elect, Tyler and Calhoun hastened
messengers to Texas and ordered two regiments of troops, under the
command of Colonel Zachary Taylor, to take position at Corpus Christi on
the southern bank of the Nueces River, and sent a squadron of the navy,
under Commodore Conner, to the mouth of the Rio Grande. This disposition
of the military and naval forces of the United States was made to
protect Texas against a possible invasion by Mexico; but it was sharp
notice that the disputed region between the Nueces and the Rio Grande
would be held for Texas. Tyler retired to his Virginia plantation,
leaving to Polk the more difficult task of securing all Oregon.

Polk had already shown his self-reliance in refusing to appoint Calhoun
Secretary of State. That eminent statesman was thoroughly familiar with
the foreign relations of the Government, and he enjoyed a prestige that
would have distinguished any administration; besides, he was certain
that he could bring matters to a peaceful conclusion with both Mexico
and England. Nor had he failed in his loyalty to the new President
during the recent campaign. Still Polk gave James Buchanan, of
Pennsylvania, the first place in the Cabinet. Robert J. Walker asked and
received the second place--the Treasury. William L. Marcy, of New
York, and John Y. Mason, of Virginia, represented in the Cabinet those
large Democratic constituencies, while George Bancroft, the historian,
spoke for New England, though the people of that section would never
have named him for the honor.

[Illustration: The Presidential Election of 1844]

To the surprise of old political heads Polk announced blandly in his
inaugural that he would proceed to "reoccupy Oregon"; that is, he would
execute the mandate of the Baltimore Convention even at the cost of war
with England! But Calhoun had practically agreed with the British
Minister to compromise the conflicting claims to Oregon. Buchanan, being
a man of yielding temper, was disposed to the same easy solution of the
most dangerous problem of the Administration. The President, however,
restrained his Secretary, and in the annual message of December, 1845,
he asked Congress to give him authority to dissolve the copartnership of
England and the United States with reference to Oregon. This was taken
in both countries as inviting war.

Calhoun regarded this move as likely to be fatal to the retention of
Texas and certain to lose for the country all of Oregon. He returned to
the Senate for the avowed purpose of preventing war. Webster, in the
Senate again, was on friendly terms with the leaders of the English
governing party, and both he and they were striving to prevent the
expansionists from committing an overt act of hostility. Benton, the
foremost of expansionists before Tyler became President, was also ready
to compromise the dispute. This meant that Calhoun, Webster, and Benton
would unite their influence to defeat the foreign policy of the
President if it were not modified to suit their views.

But the new leadership embraced a group of able and bold men: John A.
Dix, of New York; Caleb Cushing, a Whig recruit from Massachusetts;
James M. Mason, of Virginia; Robert Barnwell Rhett, William L. Yancey,
and Jefferson Davis, of the lower South; and David Atchison, Stephen A.
Douglas, Lewis Cass, and William Allen, of the Northwest,--all ardent
expansionists and "big Americans" who would not readily suffer the
defeat of the party program. During the summer and autumn of 1845 their
policy had been worked out in detail and discussed among the men who
were to be responsible for its execution. In domestic affairs their
scheme embraced the settlement of the long-disputed financial policy in
a new Independent or Sub-Treasury Bill which Secretary Walker was
preparing. The Tariff of 1842, which had offended the Democratic South,
was also to be reformed, and Walker had written the new schedules which
Congress was to enact in due time. In order to secure the necessary
Western support for these Southern purposes, the old internal
improvements program was revived in an enlarged rivers and harbors bill.
This was a big plan and the Democratic majorities in House and Senate
were very narrow. The outlook was anything but encouraging, with
Webster, Calhoun, and Benton likely to be in opposition on every point.

But Congress passed the Sub-Treasury Bill, by which most of the
financial measures of the preceding administrations since 1833, resting
on the mere orders of President or Secretary of the Treasury, were
legalized. It was in the main the same law which Van Buren had labored
so long to secure, but which the Whigs had repealed in 1841. The money
of the Government was henceforth to be kept in certain designated
sub-treasuries in leading cities like New York, Baltimore, and New
Orleans, and drawn upon by the Secretaries of the Treasury when needed.
There was thus to be no national bank; and the state banks were to
continue issuing their paper, which was to be the money of the people.
Gold and silver, coined by the government mint at Philadelphia, were
seldom demanded in ordinary business transactions, though coin or
bullion still remained the redemption money of the banks and served as
the basis of exchange with foreign countries.

The South had preached free trade since 1828. Polk and his Secretary of
the Treasury had been prominent exponents of the idea, despite some
campaign bargaining with Pennsylvania. In England Richard Cobden, John
Bright, and Sir Robert Peel were about to secure the repeal of the
age-old protective system, and in both France and Germany the free-trade
agitation was daily winning recruits. Polk and his advisers set
themselves the task of securing the passage of a "free-trade tariff" for
the United States. Walker submitted an able report in December, 1845. A
very high rate was recommended on all luxuries, including wines and
liquors; an average duty of twenty-five per cent was to be laid on the
great bulk of imports which would compete with American cotton, wool,
and iron manufactures; and a long list of articles of every day
consumption on which no duties should be imposed was submitted. Though
the Pennsylvanians denounced the proposed tariff bill as un-Democratic,
it became a law in July, 1846, proved to be successful, and remained the
corner-stone of the Democratic structure till 1861.

The _douceur_, in the form of a bill for liberal internal improvements
for the Northwest, whose leaders all voted for the tariff reductions,
passed both houses of Congress; but the members from the lower South,
led by Robert Barnwell Rhett, protested to the last. Polk accepted their
view and vetoed the bill. Northwestern men cried out "treachery" so
loudly that summer, in a great mass meeting in Chicago, that the
President feared the party was seriously endangered. Still, the three
problems over which Clay, Calhoun, and Webster had wrestled since 1816
had been solved. The United States was henceforth to manage its finances
independently; the free-trade element had won the ascendancy, and there
was not to be another high-tariff campaign until after the Civil War;
and internal improvements on a large national scale were not to be
undertaken until the passage of the Pacific Railway Bill in 1862. The
only cloud above the political horizon was the anger of the Northwestern

There was more danger in carrying forward the program which was intended
to secure to the United States Oregon, California, and New Mexico. But
the first step had already been taken. In April, 1846, both House and
Senate, in spite of the opposition of the older leaders, authorized the
President to give notice to England that joint occupation should cease
at the expiration of a year. The English people were much excited, and
the idea prevailed that this was only a move on the part of the United
States to seize Canada, but the British Government renewed the
proposition to compromise on the forty-ninth parallel, Vancouver Island
to remain in British possession. A treaty to this effect was accepted by
both Governments during the summer of 1846. Polk could boast that the
Oregon question had been settled. Again the Northwestern Democrats, who
had been promised all of Oregon, were sorely disappointed. One of their
most popular leaders declared in the Senate: "James K. Polk has spoken
words of falsehood, and with the tongue of a serpent." Would the
Northwestern wing of the party continue loyal? This may, perhaps, best
be answered when we come to discuss the Wilmot Proviso.

When the Oregon question was at its acutest stage, in the autumn of
1845, Polk sent John Slidell, an adroit politician of Louisiana, to
Mexico, to renew the friendly relations which had been broken off
immediately after the passage of the joint resolution by Congress.
Slidell was authorized to negotiate a treaty by which European
influence, then being exerted in Mexico against the United States, was
to be counteracted, the annexation of Texas approved, and all of the
claims of American citizens against Mexico were to be definitely
satisfied. But as Mexico had no funds in her treasury, Slidell was to
assume for the United States all these obligations, and pay the
Mexicans $5,000,000 in return for the cession of New Mexico, a part of
which was claimed by Texas. Finally Slidell was to purchase California,
if that were found to be possible, and raise the cash payment from
$5,000,000 to $25,000,000. Slidell's mission was supported by a naval
demonstration in Mexican waters, and the meaning of his presence was
made very plain to the people of the distressed republic.

The new Minister was rejected, however, and Taylor was ordered to move
his troops toward the Rio Grande. Mexico resented this, and near
Matamoras on April 24, 1846, came the first pass at arms. Slidell
returned to Washington about the time that the news of this encounter
reached the President. On May 11, war was declared and Taylor was
ordered to cross the border and "conquer a peace." In August Colonel S.
W. Kearny seized New Mexico and set out with a troop of three hundred
men to take California. But Commodore John Drake Sloat had been sent to
the Pacific with a squadron of the navy to prevent the seizure of
Monterey by the English. And to make certainty more certain, Consul
Thomas O. Larkin at Monterey had been instructed, about the time of
Slidell's appointment to Mexico, to be in readiness for any emergency.
Before Kearny could cross the mountains, Larkin and Sloat had taken
possession of California, almost unresisted.

In September, 1846, General Taylor won a brilliant victory at Monterey,
twenty miles south of the Rio Grande, and his forces were being
augmented every day for the march overland to the City of Mexico. Whig
politicians hailed at once the new general as their candidate for the
Presidency in 1848. Naturally the Administration did not care to aid
their opponents in their political plans, and its leaders cast about for
a Democratic general. None was to be found; and Thomas H. Benton,
willing that Jackson's plan for his elevation to the Presidency should
be fulfilled, asked Polk to make him commander-in-chief of all the
forces operating in Mexico. Benton had never had any military
experience, and Polk was relieved to find that such an appointment would
not be confirmed by the Senate. General Winfield Scott, already
quarreling with the Secretary of War, and hence out of favor with the
Administration, was the only alternative. Scott was also a candidate for
the Whig nomination for the Presidency. After much hesitation most of
the troops of Taylor were placed under the command of Scott and
reinforced with still others, and all set sail for Vera Cruz, then as
now the great port of Mexico. The city fell on March 29, 1847, and the
march to the City of Mexico was about to begin.

Meanwhile, Santa Anna had been made commander of all the Mexican armies,
and he, learning of Taylor's weak and isolated position south of
Monterey, hastened with twenty thousand soldiers to surround and capture
him. Taylor moved forward and met the enemy at Buena Vista, after
receiving some raw recruits, on February 23, 1847, and completely routed
him, thus adding to the laurels he had already won and convincing the
country that he had been badly treated by the authorities in

Scott began the march to the Mexican capital on April 8. He met resolute
resistance at Cerro Gordo, where on April 17 and 18 a large army of the
enemy was attacked and defeated. At this point Nicholas Trist, envoy
from the President, with instructions to treat with Mexico on the basis
of Slidell's proposals of 1845, arrived. Trist was a clerk in the
Department of State, and Scott refused to recognize or have any
relations with him. After much unseemly bickering and the conciliatory
services of the British Minister to Mexico, the general and the envoy
made peace, and negotiations were opened, only to be broken off by Santa
Anna upon his arrival from the north. On August 19 and 20, the battle of
Cherubusco seemed to convince the Mexicans that further resistance would
be futile, and Trist again offered peace on the terms of 1845, except
that the United States would reduce the amount of money to be paid by
$5,000,000. But the armistice under which the negotiations had been
renewed was broken, and on September 8 and 13, the battles of Molino del
Rey and Chapultepec were fought, and the capital was occupied on
September 14. A revolution in the affairs of Mexico now took place, and
the new Government appointed commissioners on November 22, to treat with

However, the news of these battles and victories had aroused the
expansionist instincts of the people of the United States, or at least
of the articulate classes, to the point of demanding the annexation of
the whole of Mexico. Sober newspapers, like the New York _Evening Post_,
officers of the navy and the army, like Commodore Stockton and Colonel
Jefferson Davis, the hero of the battle of Buena Vista, and leading
politicians, John A. Dix, Lewis Cass, and Secretary Walker, urged the
Government to make an end of Mexico by prompt dismemberment. Although
the election of Representatives in 1846 had resulted in giving the Whigs
control of the House, Congress seemed disposed to yield to the popular
clamor as they came together in December, 1847, when the news of the
raising of the American flag over the city of Mexico was fresh in the
public mind.

Polk found his Cabinet divided on the subject of "all Mexico," with the
preponderance of influence in favor of annexation. Buchanan gave out a
public letter in which he said, "Destiny beckons us to hold and civilize
Mexico." Walker threatened to urge the absorption of Mexico in his
report to Congress. The flag should never be hauled down from the
ramparts of the captured capital of Mexico. Polk resisted this pressure,
but he recalled Trist just before the beginning of the final
negotiations with Mexico. On the advice of General Scott, Trist refused
to obey the President, and both he and the general hastened the

Although the Whigs were also infected with the expansionist fever, Henry
Clay came out of his retirement at Ashland, near Lexington, and on
November 13, made an impassioned appeal to the country against the
wickedness of despoiling a helpless neighbor; John Quincy Adams, nearing
the end of his career, continued to denounce the whole Mexican
movement. But Webster, an ardent candidate now for the Whig nomination
in 1848, said little and took this occasion to visit the South and West.
Calhoun made it his especial business in the Senate to defeat what he
thought was the President's purpose, the annexation of all Mexico. But
the prospect of success of these "little Americans" was far from bright.

When the Trist treaty, giving satisfaction on all the points raised in
Slidell's mission and selling to the United States both California and
New Mexico, reached Washington in February, 1848, there was every
temptation to reject it. The ablest members of the Cabinet insisted upon
its rejection; a scheme for the establishment of a protectorate over
Yucatan, which was expected to eventuate in annexation, was being urged,
and the rumors of approaching convulsions in Europe were heartening
leading members of Congress. Why should not the United States fulfill
her destiny? There was none to interfere or make afraid. Senator Foote,
of Mississippi, urged in glowing terms the advantages of "extending
American liberty" over Central America; Senator Hannegan, of Indiana,
fairly represented his section when he said that the time had come for
the United States to take Canada, too, and make the boundaries of North
America the boundaries of the great Republic; and Senator Cass was
making his campaign for the Democratic nomination on the plea that the
time was ripe for the extinguishment of the remnants of European
authority on the continent.

The President, worn out with the toils of office and determined not to
seek renomination, decided to accept the treaty, and the Senate, in
spite of the warmest harangues of the extremists, promptly approved the
work of Trist and Scott, for the general had had much to do with the
negotiations. The war had come to an end, though there were still
further efforts to undo the treaty by seizing Yucatan, and there was
much complaint from leading Senators and Representatives at the alleged
weakness of Polk.

[Illustration: Annexations of 1845-1853]

At a cost of a few thousand lives and some eighty million dollars, eight
hundred thousand square miles of territory had been added to the country
and the long-standing quarrel with Mexico about Texas had been brought
to an end. The Treasury had stood well the heavy strain of war, every
bond that had been issued had been readily taken at par and on a low
rate of interest--an unprecedented fact in American history. The hard
times of the preceding decade seemed to be brought to a conclusion. No
one complained at the tariff, and even the veto of the internal
improvements bill was passing out of the public mind. The South and the
West had carried their program. Polk retired to his home to die a few
months later. There had been no appreciable public demand for his
renomination; and, rather strange to say, both the people and the
historians consigned him to comparative oblivion.


G. P. Garrison's _Westward Extension_ (1906), in the _American Nation_
series, has given us the best brief general survey of the expansion
movement which closed with the war with Mexico. An exhaustive treatment
of the Texas question is Justin H. Smith's _The Annexation of Texas_
(1911), and George L. Rives's _The United States and Mexico, 1821-1848_
(1913), is almost as complete for the Mexican War. A good history of
Oregon and the Oregon movement has not yet been written; but Robert
Greenhow's _History of Oregon_ (1870), H. H. Bancroft's _Oregon_, in his
voluminous Western history series, and Josiah Royce's _California_, in
the _American Commonwealths_ series, are all valuable. Some special
articles of importance are: _The Slidell Mission to Mexico_, by L. M.
Sears, in _South Atlantic Quarterly_ for 1912; E. G. Bourne's _The
United States and Mexico, 1847-48_, in the _American Historical Review_,
vol. v, p. 491; and W. E. Dodd's _The West and the War with Mexico_, in
the _Journal_ of the Illinois State Historical Society for 1911. The
sources which some may wish to consult are _The Diary of James K. Polk_,
edited by M. M. Quaife and published by the Chicago Historical Society
(1910); Lyon G. Tyler's _The Times of the Tylers_, already mentioned;
John Quincy Adams's _Memoir_, also frequently cited; _The Correspondence
of John C. Calhoun, The Works of Calhoun_ (1853-55), edited by R. K.
Cralle; and the writings of both Clay and Webster as given in the notes
to previous chapters. _Niles's Register_, a weekly periodical published
in Baltimore from 1811 to 1849, is a never-failing resource for the
current of public opinion.

                                 CHAPTER IX

                             THE ABOLITIONISTS

The overthrow of the Democratic party in 1848 was due, not to the
ruthless exploitation of Mexico nor to dissatisfaction with the new
economic policy, but to the abiding distrust of the aristocratic South
and its slavery system by the small business men and farmers of the
North. The greater the success of Polk, the greater the danger to the
older virtues of the Republic, a simple life and faith in the ideals of
freedom and equality. As we have seen, the South had given up these
ideals, and the tobacco, cotton, and sugar planters governed there with
increasing success and acceptability.

There had been persistent economic and religious opposition to the
growth of the plantation system. In the closing years of the eighteenth
century most people in the South disliked slavery, and in Kentucky
majorities of the voters sustained the first abolition movement of
radical tendencies in the country; but the excitement over the Alien and
Sedition Laws eclipsed at the critical moment the public interest in the
anti-slavery struggle. Other outcroppings of the same hostility to
slavery, as already noted, were made evident in the meetings of
Presbyterian and Methodist church conferences between 1815 and 1825 in
Maryland, western Virginia, Tennessee, and North Carolina. But all these
efforts failed and the Southern abolitionists, as we have seen, having
"fought the good fight," emigrated to the Northwest about 1830, when
Virginia failed to rid herself of the growing "incubus." Just as Birney
and Rankin "took up arms" in Ohio there arose a fiercer champion of
their cause in the East, where distance from the scene, lack of intimate
knowledge of "the system," and a strong popular dislike of the South
gave unwonted strength to the new evangelism. William Lloyd Garrison,
son of a Massachusetts sea captain, was in a humor to reform a world
which "sat in darkness." He declared negro slavery the one great evil of
his generation, and the Federal Constitution, which protected it, "an
agreement with Hell." After some ill-luck and untoward experience in
Baltimore, he set up in Boston, in 1831, his famous _Liberator_, in
which he said he would be heard, and henceforth his paper appeared every
week until the close of the Civil War. Every scrap of news, true or
untrue, which reflected the cruelty of the slavery system, the lust of
some brutal master, or the growing power of the Southern States in
national politics he repeated and exploited. It was "yellow journalism"
in a peculiar sense. But a single weekly paper published in Boston,
where the commercial and industrial interests had created an aristocracy
almost as exclusive as that of the South, could hardly be expected to
accomplish a great deal. The other papers of the city would not publish
his "stories," nor pay any attention to his earnest appeals.

He made another move upon the intrenched position of the enemy. Between
1831 and 1835 he organized abolition societies, whose members took vows
to "fight on and fight ever" till success should be attained. These
societies were naturally numerous in all those sections of New England,
the Middle States, and the Northwest where hostility and even hatred to
the masterful South prevailed. Pure idealists, small farmers, village
merchants, the unsuccessful, and debtors who dreamed of an America of
which the Declaration of Independence speaks became abolitionists.
Orators were employed, speaking campaigns were arranged, and the slogan
was always immediate and uncompensated abolition of negro slavery. The
more democratic churches were invaded and their preachers were enlisted;
or, when these resisted, placarded as unfriendly to mankind. Before 1840
not less than fifteen thousand Methodists refused association with other
Methodists who would not declare war on slavery. Nearly all of these
lived in western Massachusetts and upper New York. These revolutionists
carried their cause to the Methodist General Conference in New York in
1844, and the great Church was broken into two branches: a Northern and
a Southern. The Baptists of New England refused the same year to support
a missionary who was also a slaveholder, and immediately the Alabama
Baptists refused to fellowship their Northern brethren. The Southern
Baptist Convention, head of the denomination for all the Southern
States, was organized the next year at Augusta. The fact, already noted,
that both these sundered denominations almost doubled their membership
in the next few years shows the strong sectionalism of the issue.

Nor did the public men of the North escape the ordeal of ardent
abolitionism. William H. Seward, a conservative by nature, became an
anti-slavery Whig of national influence in 1843; Joshua R. Giddings, of
the Western Reserve, and Elijah P. Lovejoy, of Illinois, accepted the
agitator's commissions and sought to unite the new idealism with the old
Americanism. But John Quincy Adams, who had never been a democrat and
who did not sympathize with Garrison, became the arch-leader of the
abolitionists in Congress from 1836 to his death in 1848. Smarting under
the ill-treatment of Southern politicians, it was easy for the able
ex-President to become the political exponent of the new anti-Southern
agitation. In no other country of that time could a movement like
American abolitionism have gained such a hearing. In England the
Government, that is the people, never dreamed of destroying without
compensation the millions of property in the West Indian slaves. But
American abolitionists declared that there could be no property in man,
just as the socialists say there can be no property in land. To destroy
outright the property which underlay the Southern political power and
the Southern aristocracy was the aim of Garrison, and he found able men,
owners of large estates in the North, who were willing to do what he

Petitions asking the abolition of slavery in the District of Columbia
were presented to Congress by John Quincy Adams in increasing numbers
from 1831 to 1836. Southern men denied that the national legislature had
the power to destroy property protected by the Constitution; Northern
men, especially representatives of the farmer districts, insisted that
the right of petition was fundamental to the Constitution itself. There
was a deadlock in Congress, for the South controlled the Senate, while
the North controlled the House. In this state of things, Southern
legislatures formally denounced the abolition movement as endangering
the Union, and asked Congress to protect them from the floods of
abolition literature which the United States mails carried into
communities where negro slaves were in the majority and where
insurrections were likely to occur.

In Charleston the people refused to allow the postmaster to deliver the
objectionable mail matter. The subject was carried to President Jackson
in 1835, and he decided that the uneasy masters of South Carolina were
justified in their protest. Calhoun, like Adams in New England, became
the champion of his section, and devoted the remainder of his life to a
vain defense of slavery against the "foul slanders" of anti-slavery

In May, 1836, after a fierce struggle in the House, it was decided to
lay upon the table without debate all petitions which dealt with
slavery. The right of petition was thus formally denied, since a hearing
is the one thing prayed for in such documents. John Quincy Adams
declared that the rights of his constituents, as guaranteed in the
Constitution, were thus abrogated. On the other hand, Calhoun declared
in the Senate, with equal truth, that the constitutional rights of his
constituents would be jeopardized if the petitions were received and
debated. Great excitement prevailed throughout the country, for the
contending sections were too strong for any easy-going compromise to be
possible. Keen observers then visiting Washington wrote home that the
great Republic would go to pieces if either side won.

In the summer of 1837, Elijah P. Lovejoy was murdered at Alton,
Illinois, where he was trying to publish, against the wishes of the
people, an anti-slavery weekly like Garrison's. And in Boston the
following December a young aristocrat, a Harvard graduate and a
promising lawyer, arose before a large audience, before whom the
Attorney-General of the State had just been defending the Alton people
against attack, and declared that the "earth should have yawned and
swallowed up" the author of such treasonable words. It was Wendell
Phillips, and from that day till the close of the bitter sectional
struggle, he was the greatest champion of immediate abolition, the
fervent orator who was ready to destroy the Union in order to destroy
slavery. Four years after Phillips began his public career, Frederick
Douglass, escaping from a slave plantation in Maryland, came into
contact with Garrison, who at once commissioned him an orator of
abolition, and the brilliant mulatto soon developed powers that gave
rise to jealous heartburnings among the leading agitators. Lewis Tappan,
Gerrit Smith, the Misses Grimké, born in South Carolina, and a host of
other enthusiastic democrats and idealists professed the new faith.
Contemptuous of Church and State, of union and nationality, these
apostles of the new cause laid the foundations of the great sectional
party which was later to bear the name Republican, thus appealing to
the memories of Jefferson and his followers of 1800.

It was this hostility of the sections, always dangerous, but exceedingly
so in 1836, when Texas was asking admission as a slave State, that
caused so many of the best men of the time to talk freely of the
disruption of the Union. If Texas were annexed, the East would secede;
if it were not annexed, the South would secede. Van Buren, the head of
the Democratic party, and Clay, the master of the Whigs, exerted all
their influence in 1844 to avoid the expected conflict. But President
Tyler, without close party affiliations and standing in need of an
issue, was ready to take the risk. Radical expansionists, supported by
substantial economic interests in the South, urged the immediate
annexation of Texas, while Adams and twenty-one of his colleagues from
the restless sections of the North declared that the addition of the new
region to the Union would be equivalent to a dissolution of the ties
which held the warring sections together;[5] and they published, in May,
1843, a formal address to their constituents calling upon them to
secede. The members of Congress who signed this address represented the
districts, almost without exception, in which abolition had won a

[Footnote 5: See chap. _VII_, pp. 126-127.]

The important question was: Should the East remain passive while the
annexation of "another Louisiana" was being consummated and thus allow
herself to be submerged.

Charles Sumner, an ambitious young man, an intellectual kinsman of
Wendell Phillips, one of those "transcendentalists" of Massachusetts of
whom the country was to hear a great deal in the future, answered this
question in his famous "grandeur-of-nations" oration of July 4, 1845.
The élite of Boston had gathered for the occasion in Tremont Temple, and
they had invited the officers of a warship then lying in the harbor, the
local military men, and others who took pride in the martial deeds of
their ancestors, to join in the accustomed celebration of the Fourth.
Dressed in gay, super-fashionable attire, the young Sumner poured forth
in matchless language a denunciation of war, of military and naval
armaments, of President Polk and the party in power, which drove one
half of his audience frantic with resentment and anger. "There is no war
which is honorable, no peace which is dishonorable," he declared at the
outset, and for two hours he massed his arguments and statistics to
prove the thesis. The conservatives of Boston declared that it would be
the last of the young man. But Garrison and Phillips had raised up
another recruit. The oration which had insulted half of those who heard
it was published in edition after edition and distributed in the country
districts of the North. Sumner was ever after in great demand as a
speaker and anti-Southern agitator. He would not, however, dissolve the
Union to escape slavery; he sought rather to mobilize the forces which
the abolitionists were stirring to activity.

[Illustration: Location of Abolition Societies in 1847]

The war with Mexico came, victories were won, and the national
enthusiasm was running high when President Polk asked Congress in
August, 1846, to vote him two million dollars in order that he might
have the means of inducing Mexico to make satisfactory cessions of
territory. The Western Democrats were smarting under the sting of the
veto of their internal improvements bill, and the "people at home" were
much disappointed at the loss of half of Oregon, "given away," some
said, by a President who was only interested in "Southern policies."[6]
Jacob Brinkerhoff, who had had a quarrel with Polk about the patronage,
drew a proviso to be added to the appropriation bill, which declared
that slavery should be forever forbidden throughout the proposed
accessions of territory. Judge Wilmot, a quiet member from Pennsylvania,
was induced to offer the amendment. He awoke next day a famous man.

[Footnote 6: See chap. _VIII_, 152.]

Northern Whigs who had been compelled by popular sentiment to support
the Administration in all its war measures seized the opportunity to
vote for the proviso; of course the Northwestern Democrats, who were
dissatisfied because of other matters, took this chance to pay the
President for his neglect of them. The abolitionists who were in
politics became more active, and many orthodox, that is non-voting,
followers of Garrison changed their views and thenceforward fought in
the ranks of party organization. It was a critical time for the dominant
South. Only the conservative Senate saved the President from a second
unpopular veto. A strong popular sentiment supported the proviso
movement, and when Congress reassembled in December the determination
of the opposition to prevent the extension of slavery into the new
territory was stronger than ever. The House attached the proviso to the
appropriation bill, which came up again, and the Senate a second time
defeated the anti-slavery forces.

The South was by this time greatly excited, and Virginia, South
Carolina, and Alabama declared that the passage of the proposed
amendment would be resisted to the point of making open war. In the East
and Northwest, where the abolitionists were numerous, the leaders were
equally resolute in their purpose that slavery should not profit by the
war with Mexico. Horace Greeley, William H. Seward, and Salmon P. Chase,
a vigorous anti-slavery leader of Ohio, who now came into national
prominence, were the most powerful spokesmen of the various elements of
the opposition, and they were actively laying the foundations of an
abolition and sectional party which should ere long outvote the South.

The candidacy of Zachary Taylor, strongly supported by Thurlow Weed,
checked and even defeated the sectional purposes of the radicals. Taylor
was the master of a great plantation in Louisiana, and John J.
Crittenden, of Kentucky, Ballard Preston, of Virginia, and Alexander
Stephens, of Georgia, all good pro-slavery men, rallied at once to the
popular military chieftain. Clay was promptly snubbed and Webster's
claims were unceremoniously brushed aside. The Whig Convention of 1848
met in Philadelphia in May. It was under the control of Weed and his
Southern allies. Taylor was nominated, and Webster, Clay, and the other
disgruntled leaders finally gave him their support. Nothing was said of
the great issue, the spread of slavery over the new accessions; and the
party, as in 1840, went before the country without a platform. Nor was
the candidate allowed to make speeches or write public letters, which
was doubtless wise, for Taylor knew little of public questions. It was
said that he had never voted, and he claimed to belong to no party. The
Whigs took him on his reputation as a soldier and on the recommendation
of the great New York "boss." His candidacy probably saved the party
from breaking into two hostile wings.

When the Democratic Convention assembled in Baltimore in May, 1848, Cass
met with little opposition. His stout imperialism had won him the
leadership of the expansionist West and South. The radical pro-slavery
men of the lower South, who feared his former friendliness to the Wilmot
Proviso leaders, had been satisfied, with a few exceptions, by the
Nicholson letter of December, 1847, in which Cass laid down the doctrine
that the settlers in any new region should be allowed to determine for
themselves whether they would have slaves or not. It was the same idea
which Douglas made famous in his Kansas-Nebraska Bill of 1854, and which
the country then dubbed "squatter-sovereignty." Cass was nominated and
the Nicholson letter was made the platform; all the leaders of the party
gave him hearty support, save those who had been humiliated at Baltimore
four years before by the defeat of Van Buren. Van Buren himself
doubtless remembered that Cass had lent assistance to the astute
Southern politicians who had compassed his fall.

It was difficult to say which of the great parties was the weaker, the
Whigs with both Webster and Clay sulking, or the Democrats with the
shrewd Van Buren awaiting his opportunity to punish his enemies. The
opportunity came in the nomination of Van Buren by the Liberty Party
Convention, which met later in the summer at Syracuse. The Van Buren
wing of the New York Democracy approved the Syracuse Convention, and the
Free-Soil party began its first and only campaign with the ex-President
as its candidate. Van Buren received nearly 300,000 votes in November
and prevented Cass from becoming President. He had avenged himself. The
South found her alliance with the Northwest broken, but a Southern
slave-owner was to be the next President.

As so often happens in American history, the election settled nothing,
for the victorious Whigs, as in 1840, had no program, and their
candidate had no political record. When the Administration began its
work, it was found expedient to underwrite practically all that the Polk
Administration had accomplished. There was no idea of reopening the bank
or financial questions; and the tariff was already so successful that it
would have been plain folly to change it. In the foreign policy of the
country the Clayton-Bulwer Treaty with England dealt with the proposed
isthmian canal. By this agreement the two contracting parties promised
not to acquire further interests in Central America, and thus in a way
nullified the concessions of Colombia of 1846, under which Polk had
hoped for the building of a canal across Panama.

The one absorbing question after the inauguration of Taylor was that
which both the great parties had side-stepped during the campaign,
namely, what should be done with slavery in the Territories. The
Southern Whigs sought day and night to gain the ear of the President,
and the Southern Democrats were not less persistent. Both aimed at the
same thing, the extension of their favorite institution. And now that
the fight for slavery in Oregon was recognized as lost, this Southern
wooing of the new President became the more intense. It was a desperate
situation for the South. The Northwest was rapidly expanding toward the
Pacific and building up free States which might at any time repudiate
their allegiance to the South. Now the Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo
opened a great hinterland for the South, extending by the easiest passes
over the mountains to California. But the abolitionists declared that
the South should not expand in that direction save at the expense of
slavery. The President's attitude might determine the matter.

The discovery of gold in amazingly rich deposits in California hastened
the conflict of the rival sections. During the second half of 1848 and
all through 1849 thousands of Southerners, Easterners, and Westerners
rushed pell-mell into the new Eldorado, bent on making hasty fortunes
and oblivious of the anxious thoughts of statesmen. The motley
gold-diggers needed government. They asked Polk to provide it. He
failed to grant it. Congress could not do so because of the deadlock
over slavery. Benton wrote a public letter to the Californians advising
them to form a government for themselves, and his son-in-law, John C.
Frémont, went to the new community to help the cause and perhaps to come
back to Washington as one of their Senators. In 1849, the Californians
formed a State Government, and the new legislature sent their
constitution and two Senators, one of whom was Frémont, on to Washington
early the next year. Admission as a full-fledged State was asked. They
had failed to mention slavery in their constitution.

President Taylor had at last decided to admit to his counsels the
anti-slavery leaders of the Whig party, and he filled his Cabinet with
men who would support him as against Clay and Webster. William H. Seward
became the confidential adviser to the President and a sort of
Administration leader of the Senate. Southern Whigs like Stephens, who
had done much to secure for Taylor the Presidency, were without
influence, and they feared that all the anti-slavery elements of the
North were combining to control the Government.

While California was shaping her own course and the President was making
his decision as between the factions of his party, South Carolina and
Mississippi took the lead in a movement to prevent that or any other
State or Territory from being brought into the Union if slavery were not
duly recognized. Whigs and Democrats joined in great mass meetings,
which showed conclusively that the lower South was in earnest. All
classes of the people united in what seemed to be almost the unanimous
wish of the South, that the new Southwest should be preserved for the
expansion of slavery. These meetings spread over all the lower Southern
States, and as a result, a convention was called to meet in Nashville in
June, 1850. The object of this general convention was to present to
Congress a Southern ultimatum, and in the event that this should not be
heeded, to urge the secession of the slaveholding States.

In the West the crisis did not seem so acute. But Clay, now seventy-four
years old, and cured of his ambition to be President, was sent back to
the Senate in the hope of averting the calamity of a disruption of the
Union. Thomas H. Benton, though recently defeated in a campaign for
reëlection, was still in the Senate. Cass was again a member of the
Senate, and he, too, felt that the Union was about to be dissolved.
Douglas and the other younger representatives of the Northwest, who had
suffered somewhat from the legislation of 1846, ceased to nurse their
grievances against the party, and deplored the "treason" of the
abolitionists who were making all the trouble. There was undoubtedly a
crisis which Southern leaders like Davis, Stephens, Yancey, and Robert
Toombs, another able Georgian who now came into national prominence,
took pains to lay to the charge of the radical anti-slavery people of
the East; that is, to Seward and his followers, who were allowing
Garrison and Phillips and the radical abolitionists to drive them into
open opposition to the South.

When Clay came back to Washington, Taylor and his Cabinet had taken
their stand, which was to recommend the admission of California as a
free State. The Mormons in Deseret and a few Americans and Mexicans in
New Mexico had taken steps toward organizing Territories in the region
between Texas and eastern California, and they were to be made
Territories with or without slavery, as they chose. If all this were
done, the South would secede and the Administration would be in a
dilemma. Taylor was a stubborn man; he had made up his mind, and he sent
to Congress a fatherly message in which his devotion to the Union above
everything else was very evident. If the Southerners, who were then
offering Texas military assistance to make good her claim to a large
part of New Mexico, chose to resist the lawful authority of the
Administration and war came, the fault would be theirs, not his.

But Henry Clay and Daniel Webster still enjoyed much more of the
confidence of the people of the country, North and South, than the
President. Nor was Webster less popular because he had been ignored by
the Administration. He was in his place in the Senate. Calhoun was also
there. It was an exceedingly able Congress, that to which Taylor and
Seward must look for support. With scant courtesy to the President, Clay
took the lead in the Senate late in January and offered his plan of
compromising the sectional quarrel. He would make a free State of
California, allow Utah, as Deseret came to be called, and New Mexico to
form Territorial Governments without mention of slavery, pay Texas ten
million dollars for her claims against New Mexico, abolish the slave
trade in the District of Columbia, and enact a Fugitive Slave Law which
would satisfy the border Southern States.

Excitement was too intense for the two parties in the Senate and House
to accept immediately this comprehensive plan. The President opposed it;
the extreme men of the South opposed it. But Clay had not lost his power
to charm, and he was still a good manager, according to the polite
phraseology of the day. He quietly secured the support of Thomas
Ritchie, editor of the Democratic organ at Washington, _The Union_; he
broke the hold of Calhoun on Mississippi by winning to his side Senator
Henry S. Foote, a fiery Democrat and foremost advocate of Southern
resistance; and within the next three months most of the Southern Whigs
who were preparing to take part in the Nashville convention indicated
their change of heart. Clay's method, almost exactly parallel to that by
which Jackson had defeated Calhoun in 1833, was to steal away the hearts
of Whigs and Westerners, to whom the Union was still sacred, and leave
the radical South isolated. And in support of his compromise the old
statesman made most moving appeals during February and March. It was the
greatest moment of his life, he thought, and in this his colleagues were
fully agreed.

But Calhoun and the ardent representatives of the lower South, supported
by nearly all of the spokesmen of Virginia and North Carolina, were the
obstacles in the way of a settlement. They demanded a slave State in
California and free access, under the protection of the Union, to all
the new Mexican territory. The extension of the Missouri Compromise line
to the Pacific would have satisfied them. Or failing in this, Calhoun
asked for an amendment to the Federal Constitution which should create a
dual presidency in which each section was always to have a veto over the
legislation of Congress. Permanent deadlock was thus proposed as the
remedy for the ills of sectional conflict. Resolute as the old
nationalist was, he could not bring himself in these closing days of his
life to pronounce to his party the word "secession." It was pathetic to
see the disappointed and broken leader of the South as he literally wore
his life away trying to defeat Clay, his lifelong antagonist, or to
conciliate Webster, for whom he had always entertained a hearty respect.

Upon Webster and his conservative Eastern support depended the outcome.
He had never been a democrat, and as he had grown older, he had come to
sympathize more than formerly with the great property interests of the
South, which were not unlike the industrial interests of the East, for
which he had broken many a lance. He, too, had been a rival of Clay
since 1832, and three times a disappointed candidate for the Whig
nomination for the Presidency. But both he and Clay had been brushed
aside in 1848 by Thurlow Weed and the young William H. Seward with
rather scant ceremony. And the abolitionists of New England were as
noisome to him as were the radical secessionists to Henry Clay. Charles
Sumner and his friends were already waging incessant war upon him. He
took his stand on March 7, and he made the day famous. He spoke for the
Union, and the effect of the speech was probably the postponement of the
Civil War. Although he was again the follower of Clay, he was henceforth
"the Godlike Webster" to Northern conservatives, and the large business
interests of his section applauded him more heartily than they had ever
done before. But the price which he paid for this epoch-making speech
was fearful. The Massachusetts abolitionists groaned at the mention of
his name, and the poet Whittier pilloried him in the famous lines:--

        "So fallen! So lost! the light withdrawn
                 Which once he wore!
         The glory from his gray hairs gone
                 Forever more!
         Revile him not--the Tempter hath
                 A snare for all;
         And pitying tears, not scorn and wrath,
                 Befit his fall."

Clay had won. The President, resisting to the last and following the
counsels of Seward, saw the majority of Congress yield slowly to
influences which favored compromise. Calhoun died early in April, and
though his followers maintained their position resolutely, their Whig
allies were deserting them, and the Nashville convention proved a fiasco
when it assembled in June. President Taylor died on the 9th of July, and
the last obstacle to the success of Clay and Webster was removed.
Millard Fillmore, the Vice-President, a close friend of Clay, became
President; the Cabinet was reorganized, Webster becoming Secretary of
State. One by one during the month of August all the features of the
"Omnibus Bill" became law. The great majority of the Southerners
indicated their ready acceptance of the compromise as a "finality"; and
radicals like Jefferson Davis, Robert Barnwell Rhett, and William L.
Yancey retired from public life, either voluntarily or by compulsion of
the people. The big cities of the East and the Northwest celebrated the
passage of the crisis with the firing of cannon, and everywhere the
thanks of the people were expressed to the "great Congress" which had
saved them from civil war.

[Illustration: California Election of 1852]

[Illustration: The Presidential Election of 1852]

If the logic of events ever pointed to one individual as the proper
leader of the people or the fit man for the Presidency, it pointed to
Daniel Webster in 1852. The Whigs had not all voted for the compromise,
but their leaders had been its authors. The party was entitled to claim
the glory for a great performance; and if they claimed it and nominated
their candidate upon a platform of "henceforth there shall be peace
between the sections," they would undoubtedly win and control the
Federal Government for at least two or three presidential terms.

But with a most remarkable aptitude for blundering, the Whigs in their
convention of 1852 hesitated in their pronouncement upon the compromise,
and refused to nominate Webster. The radical element procured the
nomination of General Winfield Scott, a Southern man of anti-slavery
proclivities, and Scott blundered through the campaign, losing votes
every time he made a public statement. Heart-broken, the "Godlike
Webster" died before the day of election. Nor was Clay spared to witness
the crushing defeat which awaited his beloved party in November. The
Whig newspapers of that autumn appeared in mourning too frequently for
the public mind not to be affected.

Conservative interests turned to the Democratic party, whose leaders
promptly declared in their convention that the compromise was a
finality. They nominated a popular but colorless young New Englander,
Franklin Pierce, a colonel under Scott in the war with Mexico, and
Nathaniel Hawthorne wrote the campaign biography. Pierce said little
during the months of electioneering. His rôle and that of his party was
now one of conciliation. If elected he would enforce the laws and
maintain the Union. Every State but four, Massachusetts, Vermont,
Kentucky, and Tennessee, gave him their electoral votes. The support of
the Free-Soil Democrats, 156,000 votes and all in the abolitionist
sections, showed that the country was tired of agitation. The prolonged
quarrel of the sections seemed definitely closed, and the future
promised peace and prosperity.


A. B. Hart's _Slavery and Abolition_ (1906), in _American Nation_
series; F. J. and W. P. Garrison's _William Lloyd Garrison: the Story of
his Life Told by his Children_ (1885-89), and both McMaster and Schouler
in their histories, already mentioned, give all the essential facts
about the abolitionists and the Wilmot Proviso struggle. James Ford
Rhodes's _History of the United States_ (from 1850 to 1877) is a work of
the greatest importance, and it gives, in vol. _I_, the best account of
the compromise measures of 1850. The following biographies are valuable
for the period: T. W. Barnes, _Memoir of Thurlow Weed_ (1884); William
Birney, _James G. Birney and his Times_ (1890); G. L. Austin, _Life and
Times of Wendell Phillips_ (1887); Henry Cleveland, _Alexander Stephens
in Public and Private_ (1866); W. H. Haynes, _Charles Sumner_ (1909),
in _American Crises_ series; A. C. McLaughlin, _Lewis Cass_ (1891), in
_American Statesmen_ series. Special for the lower South: Miss Cleo
Hearon, _Mississippi and the Compromise of 1850_ (1914); W. G. Brown,
_The Lower South in American History_ (1902); J. W. DuBose, _The Life of
William L. Yancey_; and A. C. Cole, _The Whig Party in the South_
(1913), named in a previous note. J. D. Richardson's _Messages and
Papers of the Presidents_ (1900), vol. v; H. V. Ames's _State Documents
on Federal Relations_ (1907); and the _Congressional Globe_ for the 29th
and 30th Congresses give the most important speeches and documents
bearing on the crisis of 1850.

                                  CHAPTER X


Partisan opposition to Franklin Pierce had almost disappeared before the
day of his inauguration in 1853. Charles Sumner, to be sure, was in the
Senate, but he was a silent member, and Massachusetts inclined to follow
Edward Everett rather than Sumner. William H. Seward still spoke for the
anti-slavery Whigs in Congress, and Salmon P. Chase maintained a
precarious hold on Ohio. There was a handful of Free-Soilers in the
House of Representatives who were ready to make trouble for the new
Administration, and resistance to the enforcement of the Fugitive Slave
Law now and then broke out in riots in certain neighborhoods of New
England and in the Western Reserve. But the opposition was everywhere
declining until Mrs. Harriet Beecher Stowe's famous novel, _Uncle Tom's
Cabin_, with its exaggerated emphasis upon the cruelties of the slavery
system, began to stir the consciences of men. Even so there was no
substantial evidence that any great political upheaval or party change
would occur within the next fifteen or twenty years. The people were
contented with their country, and the growth of the population gave
evidence of a great future.

When Jackson came to the Presidency there were about 12,500,000 people
in the country; in 1850 the number had grown to 23,000,000, and in 1860
there were 31,000,000. The Census Bureau estimated that the population
of 1900 would be 100,000,000 if the growth of the Pierce period was
maintained. Not only was the normal native increase phenomenal, but
foreigners poured into "the land of the free" in unprecedented numbers.
In 1850 there were 2,800,000 foreign-born people in the United States;
in 1860 there were 5,400,000, and this tide of immigration was of a very
high social and economic character. The German element was large,
industrious, and liberty-loving, many of them being refugees from the
political persecutions of 1832-33 and 1848-50. The English, Scotch, and
Irish composed most of the remainder, and these were already familiar
with the ideals and political habits of the country and therefore
readily assimilable. By far the greater part of this rich contribution
to American life fell to the cities of the East and the open country of
the Northwest, where good land was abundant and available at low prices.

If we compare the distribution of the population of 1850-60 with that of
1830, we shall see how well the sectional balance, on which so much
depended, was maintained. In 1830, the East[7] had a population of
6,000,000 in a total of almost 13,000,000. This had increased only
500,000 in 1850; but between 1850 and 1860 the increase was nearly
2,000,000. The South had a population of 6,000,000 in 1830; in 1850,
8,900,000, and in 1860 this had grown to 11,400,000. The Northwest had,
however, grown faster than either of the other sections, for her
increase, including California and Oregon, had been from 4,800,000 in
1850 to 8,260,000 in 1860; that is, the growth of the East during the
last decade of _ante-bellum_ history was 21 per cent, that of the South,
28 per cent, and that of the Northwest, 77 per cent.

[Footnote 7: See chap. _III_ of this volume.]

Keeping in mind the sectional conditions of 1830 as set forth in the
third chapter of this volume, we shall come to a better understanding of
the Civil War if the prosperity of the different parts of the Union be
closely analyzed. The people of the United States were poor indeed in
1830 as compared with 1850-60. Between 1815 and 1846 the receipts of the
Federal Treasury fluctuated violently; but from that date to 1860,
except for two years of panic, the Federal Treasury was always full and
there was generally an annual surplus of from $5,000,000 to $10,000,000.
During the Jacksonian era the prices of staple commodities fluctuated as
much as fifty per cent in single years. Cotton was twenty cents a pound
during all of the twenties; it was as low as seven cents when
nullification was the critical issue; but from 1850 to 1860 cotton sold
at ten or twelve cents. Corn was in most places twenty-five cents a
bushel during Jackson's and Van Buren's Administrations; between 1850
and 1860 it rose in price steadily and was almost everywhere readily
marketable at fifty cents a bushel. In the era just preceding the war
prices were steadily rising, and the demand for American produce,
cotton, corn, tobacco, wheat, and sugar, was always greater than the

This prosperity was unequally distributed, as always. The East had
developed her manufactures beyond all expectation, and the great mill
belt stretched from southeastern Maine to New York City, its center of
gravity, thence to Philadelphia and Baltimore, and from these cities
westward to Pittsburg. Another belt ancillary to this began in western
Massachusetts and extended along the Erie Canal to Buffalo, thence to
Cleveland, Detroit, and Chicago. In these areas, or in the industrial
belt as it may be termed, there lived about 4,000,000 mill operatives,
whose annual output of wool, iron, and cotton manufactures alone was
worth in 1860 $330,393,000 as compared to the $58,000,000 of 1830.
Perhaps the meaning of these figures may become clearer if we note that
the total investments in these industries was considerably less than the
yearly product. Nor was the East less prosperous in other lines. Her
tonnage had increased from a little more than 500,000 in 1830 to nearly
5,000,000 in 1860. The freight and passenger ships, built of iron, and
encouraged by liberal subsidies from the Federal Government, employed
12,000 sailors and paid their owners $70,000,000 a year. They carried
the manufactures of the East to the Southern plantations, to South
America, and to the Far East. This great fleet of commercial vessels was
owned almost exclusively in Massachusetts, New York, and Pennsylvania,
and its owners were at the end of the decade about to wrest from Great
Britain her monopoly of the carrying trade of the world.

[Illustration: The Industrial Belt of 1860]

In spite of the efforts of President Jackson and of the purposes of the
sub-treasury system, the concentration of capital in the Eastern towns
and cities continued. Only New York, instead of Philadelphia, was the
new center. The merchants of that city imported three fourths of the
European goods consumed in the country, and they in turn exported nearly
all of the great crops with which the balance of trade was maintained.
New York was also a distributing center for the manufactures of the East
which were sent to the South, the West, or the outside world. Thus the
exchanges of all the sections were made there, and before 1860 its
banks, with a capital of $130,000,000 and specie reserves of only
$20,000,000, did a business of $7,000,000,000 a year. And while New York
became the American London, the whole of the East was likewise securing
the lion's share of the banking profits of the country. Although the
assessed wealth of the section counted only one fourth of the total
$16,000,000,000 for the country in 1860, the East had nearly two thirds
of the banking capital; and the money in circulation there was $16.5
_per capita_ as against $6.6 for the country as a whole.[8] Industry,
commerce, shipping, and banking concentrated in the narrow area of less
than 200,000 square miles, earned yearly returns equal as a rule to the
total of the capital invested. Money changed hands rapidly, credits did
the work of capital, and the rapid growth of population added large
unearned increments to the fortunes of those who owned land or had
established themselves in trade.

[Footnote 8: This comparison is based on the Census Reports for 1860. It
does not vary materially from the estimates given for 1860 in Executive
Documents of the Senate, no. 38, 52d Cong., 2d Sess.]

[Illustration: Railroads in Operation 1850]

[Illustration: Railroads in Operation 1860]

Naturally this concentration of industry and the economic resources of
the country in the East led to the rapid extension of railways into the
West and South. The New York Central, the Erie, the Pennsylvania, and
the Baltimore and Ohio systems had already been founded, and they made
connections in 1850-53 with the canals and railways of the Middle West.
The Illinois Central, which connected the lower South with Chicago, was
affiliated by means of interlocking directorates with the New York
Central before 1856. John M. Forbes, the Boston capitalist, was
president of the Michigan Central during the decade, and laying the
foundations of the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy. Commodore Vanderbilt
was organizing his steamboat and railroad properties and expanding the
area of his activities till it reached, before 1860, the rich grain belt
of the West, the cotton lands of the South, the Far Eastern trade _via_
his Panama Railroad and Pacific steamers, and the great markets of
Europe. During the decade under consideration the capitalists of the
East built 4000 miles of railway east of Pittsburg, 7500 miles in the
Northwest, and 5000 miles in the South. But the work was not all done at
the expense of the capitalists. The Federal Government donated
20,000,000 acres of the most valuable lands in the country to the
companies which built the roads; States, counties, and towns in the West
and South voted many millions for the same purpose; and European
capitalists loaned $450,000,000 secured by first mortgage bonds on the
vast properties.

Thus the industrial belt of the East was reaching out toward Chicago,
St. Louis, and New Orleans and beyond for a commerce that was already
richer than the gold mines of California; and New York, Boston,
Philadelphia, the canal towns, and Pittsburg were becoming centers of
wealth and economic power which attracted the attention of the world.
Great merchants, like the Lawrences of Boston and the Astors of New
York, became the objects of emulation everywhere, and they in turn set
the fashion of giving liberally of their means to the cause of education
or the founding of hospitals, which has been a distinctive feature of
the social history of the last thirty years.

[Illustration: The Black Belt of 1860]

The planters, on the other hand, had spread their system over the lower
South in a remarkable manner since 1830. From eastern Virginia their
patriarchal establishments had been pushed westward and southwestward
until in 1860 the black belt reached to the Rio Grande. Tobacco, cotton,
and sugar were still their great staples, and the annual returns from
these were not less than $300,000,000; while the growth of their output
between 1850 and 1860 was more than one hundred per cent. The number of
slaves who worked the plantations had increased between 1830 and 1860
from 2,000,000 to nearly 4,000,000 souls, thus suggesting the comparison
with the workers in the mills of the East. The exports of the black belt
composed more than two thirds of the total exports of the country; but
they were largely billed through Eastern ports, and most of the imports
of the South came through New York, where a second toll was taken from
the products of the plantation.

But the ratio of annual returns to the total investments was very unlike
that of the East. In the South the assessed value of real estate and
personal property, including slaves, in 1860 was $5,370,000,000, while
the returns for the best years were somewhat over $300,000,000: that is,
their investment was $1,000,000,000 greater than that of the East and
their income not more than a third as great. Perhaps the banking
statistics of the planter section will enable us to get a better view of
their dependence upon the East. The South had in 1860 a banking capital
of $89,131,000, a bank-note circulation of $68,344,000, and money on
deposit, $56,342,000. Thus an annual return of $300,000,000 brought
deposits of only $56,000,000; and the _per capita_ circulation was only
$10. New York City alone had twice as much money on deposit as all the
Southern States, though the personal property valuation of the whole
State of New York, with a population four times as great, was only
$320,000,000 as against $240,000,000 for Virginia.

Although the system of agriculture in the South had not greatly improved
since 1830, the annual crops sold for about four times as much as they
had brought when Jackson was President. In spite of the "red gullies"
and the waste lands, the owners of plantations were the wealthy men of
the time. The Hairstons of Virginia and the Aikens of South Carolina
were counted as the peers of the Astors of New York. But a Southern man
worth $4,000,000 or $5,000,000 would not receive an annual income of
more than $100,000 unless he happened to be in the midst of a new cotton
region. Still the hold of the planters on the state and county
governments of the South was, as we have seen in a former chapter, even
more secure than it had been in 1830, and Southern public opinion was
almost always the opinion of the planters. Yet there was great
uneasiness in the South as to the future, and public officials, railway
magnates, and newspaper men gathered in annual conventions to devise
ways and means of increasing the power of the South and of competing
with the East in the race for economic supremacy.

[Illustration: The Cotton Belt of 1860]

[Illustration: Tobacco Areas in 1860]

These conventions discussed scientific agriculture, the proper size of a
plantation, and the duties of "Christian masters to their servants";
they outlined plans for connecting Southern ports with the Northwest,
for opening a direct trade with Europe, and for annexing territory which
might increase the area of the staple producing States. They supported
Narciso Lopez and John A. Quitman in their filibustering expeditions
against Cuba, and they heralded William Walker, who sought to make
Nicaragua an American slave State in 1854-59, as a statesman and "man of
destiny." The reopening of the African slave trade was the subject of
long and earnest debate, and Southern delegations in Congress were urged
to exert themselves to secure a repeal of the law against the slave
trade in order that the South might have some means of increasing its
laboring population to counterbalance the advantages which the East and
Northwest derived from immigration. A paramount purpose of these
gatherings was to solidify the South and to harmonize the interests of
the border States with those of the lower South. In the background of
all this, and especially after the struggle over the Kansas-Nebraska
Bill in 1854, there was the ever-recurring probability of secession from
the Union.

What added to the anxieties of Southern leaders was the extraordinary
growth and expansion of the Northwest. In 1830 it had been the East that
most feared the development of the Mississippi Valley; now it was the
South that took pains to hedge and limit the opportunities of the newer
States. And there was reason for the masterful politicians of the cotton
country to watch the Northwestern frontier. Michigan had become a State
in 1837, Iowa and Wisconsin in 1846, and Minnesota was to enter the
Union in 1858. There were four Territories, Kansas, Nebraska, Oregon,
and Washington, that might be admitted at any time. California was
growing powerful, and she was already lost to slavery if not to the
South. And a free State was likely to be formed in Colorado. Seven
thriving Northwestern States and five promising Territories gave every
assurance that the seat of political influence was about to be shifted
to the upper Mississippi Valley. Moreover, the economic changes that
were taking place in that region were such as might have alarmed
conservative men both South and East.

The removal of the Indians from Michigan, Indiana, and Illinois had
paralleled the similar removal from the lower South. But during the
fifties, Iowa, Wisconsin, and Minnesota succeeded in pushing the natives
into the arid Nebraska Territory. And now as the great "American Desert"
proved to be desirable country for the pioneers, it was proposed to
shift the Northwestern Indians into the Southern hinterland, now known
as Oklahoma, and thus to bar the way of the planter civilization to New
Mexico and California.

An equally important factor in the development of the Northwest was the
invention and manufacture of grain-planting and harvesting machinery by
Cyrus McCormick and others about 1845. This enabled the farmers to
increase their operations very much as the Whitney gin had done for the
cotton farmers of 1800. Still the transportation of wheat and corn is so
difficult that no great revolution would have been possible but for the
simultaneous building of thousands of miles of railways which opened
to grain production the vast prairie lands remote from the rivers. The
manufacture of farm implements and the building of railroads made the
Northwest a staple-producing area of greater importance than the South
had been, though this was recognized by only a few men before the
beginning of the Civil War.

[Illustration: Wheat Areas in 1860]

The value of the wheat and corn crops of the Northwest increased from
$80,000,000 in 1850 to $225,000,000 in 1860. In addition to this the
Northwest produced pork in great quantities for the cotton plantations,
and fresh meats for the industrial cities of the East. The railways, of
which mention has already been made, thus brought the isolated farmers
of the Western interior into close contact with the markets of the
world, and the Northwest was fast becoming the food-producing region of
the country and at the same time exporting grain worth at least
$50,000,000 a year. In New York, Pennsylvania, and other Eastern States
the corn and wheat output steadily declined between 1850 and 1860, while
the up-country of the South failed to produce the foodstuffs needed by
the planters. Thus the manufacturing and the older staple-producing
States came to rely on the Northwest for a large part of their

Western farmers were now well-to-do. They deserted their log cabins and
built frame houses; they bought large quantities of the finer goods of
the East. Pianos made in Germany and silks from France found their way
to Indiana, Illinois, and Iowa. Villages became towns and towns grew
rapidly into cities. Pittsburg, Cincinnati, Cleveland, and Chicago
imitated the ways and manners of Boston and New York. It was a busy,
ambitious life that animated the West and produced industrial leaders
like Cyrus McCormick, William B. Ogden, and John Y. Scammon, and
politicians like Stephen A. Douglas, Salmon P. Chase, and the Dodges of
Iowa and Wisconsin.

But in this busy region with its self-sufficing agriculture, the actual
surplus capital, as in the South, found its way to Eastern cities. With
a population of nearly 8,000,000 and foreign exports of more than
$50,000,000, the Northwest still had only $10,425,000 on deposit in her
banks and $27,000,000 invested in banking enterprises. Her _per capita_
circulation was only $4. Here as in the South the amount of specie in
the banks was twice as great in proportion to population and the volume
of business transacted as in the East. The debts of the Northwest to the
East and to Europe cannot well be estimated, but they were enormous.
States, counties, and corporations owed hundreds of millions, and when
the interest on these obligations was paid at the end of each year, the
remaining net increase was small indeed. The West had been badly in debt
during the Jackson period; it was still in debt.

While the growing Northwest owed more to the rest of the world than it
was likely to pay in half a century, its leaders saw that it must
continue to expand its area and improve its economic life. Undoubtedly
the one leader who best understood the needs of his region was Stephen
A. Douglas, Senator from Illinois and perpetual candidate for the
office of President of the United States. Young, active, and ardently
patriotic, Douglas had been among the first to see during the Polk
Presidency that the old Western policy of internal improvements and
freer lands for all who might come must be changed. The West, even the
Northwest, was firmly attached to the Democratic party; but the center
of that great organization was the South. The leaders of that section
looked more and more to free trade as a national policy. If they
succeeded, as there was every reason to expect they would succeed, there
would be no more easy money for the building of canals and roadways.
Moreover, the South was now jealous of the expanding Northwest, and her
leaders were growing more hostile toward the idea of free lands for the
Northwestern settlers.

Douglas and his friends in both houses of Congress worked out a new
policy during the years 1845 to 1850. It was to induce the Federal
Government to give large tracts of public land to the Northwestern
States on condition that they be given again by the States to railroad
corporations as aids to the building of new lines. The roads would sell
their lands at good prices, the Government would sell its remaining
lands at high prices after the building of the roads, and the farmers
would cheerfully pay these higher prices if markets for wheat and corn
could be created. The leaders of the lower South were interested in this
new American system, for there was government land in their States and
they needed railroads quite as much as the Northwesterners. Capitalists
of the East and Europe would be enlisted because the great tracts of
rich land would be security for money they might lend at high rates to
the roads. Finally, the increasing armies of immigrants gave assurance
that the railroad lands could be sold easily.

The outcome was the building of the Illinois Central, the Mobile and
Ohio, and other shorter lines in each of the Western and Northwestern
States during the decade of 1850-60. The railroad lands sold as high as
$8 or $10 an acre, and the government lands advanced in value
accordingly, though the Federal Treasury did not profit to the full
extent of these promises. The growth and expansion of the Northwest
described above was due largely to this policy of Douglas. Chicago
bankers loaned all the money they had and borrowed all they could borrow
for the building of railroads. The thriving young city, always the pet
of Senator Douglas, increased its business in marvelous manner during
the decade. It soon distanced St. Louis in the race for wealth and
population, and before 1854 conceived of the scheme of building a great
railway, long ago proposed by Asa Whitney, of Michigan, to the Pacific.
This road was to connect with the Illinois Central in Iowa, thread its
way through the Indian lands in Nebraska, and finally bring San
Francisco and the Far East into touch with the commercial center of the
Middle West. It was a magnificent undertaking, not unlike that of the
Erie Canal, which had made New York the Emporium of the East; it was
even more daring for a section already in debt to the limit of its
ability to pay. But these ambitious Northwestern men and politicians
had already won the support of the railway men of New York and Boston,
and their agents still borrowed money with ease in London and Liverpool.
And with States like Illinois, Wisconsin, and Iowa doubling their
population each decade, and hence increasing their land values three or
fourfold, even the impossible became possible. The most ambitious
section of the Union during the Pierce Administration was the Northwest,
and it need not surprise us to learn that Douglas, her mouthpiece, was
the most ambitious leader of his party.

As compared with all former standards, the country of 1850-60 was
exceedingly prosperous. A series of good crop years, the low tariff of
the United States, and the free-trade policy of England stimulated the
unprecedented commercial activity. The financial system was more stable
than it had ever been before, and the inter-sectional trade was assuming
proportions never dreamed of in the earlier days of the Republic. The
manufactures of the East, which approximated $800,000,000 in value each
year, were sold to the South in exchange for bills on Liverpool or
London, or to the West in return for its grain and other foodstuffs. The
banks and railroads brought all sections closer together, especially the
East and the West; while the expanding merchant marine promised soon to
give the United States the mastery of international commerce.

Thus the East had learned to prosper without a high tariff, and the
South was voting for large subsidies to Eastern shipping. The West had
found a way to develop her resources in spite of Southern and Eastern
jealousy, and the laws of commerce were daily weakening the influence of
state rights and sectional dislike. A new era had begun. Big business
interests and great railway schemes had developed the corporation in its
modern connotation; large harvests and a most enterprising industry were
producing the capital for a new economic era; and all the social
tendencies seemed to be working out a national life which was no longer
parochial. It was the business of politics so to guide and regulate the
varying activities of the people that sectional hatreds should pass away
and that the resources of the country should not be squandered. Such was
the task of Franklin Pierce, the new leader, who had not known
personally the fears and dislikes of earlier days. But a country so rich
and prosperous as the United States in 1850-60 had other interests, a
social and intellectual life which must engage our attention before we
take up the political evolution of the period.


James Ford Rhodes's _History of the United Slates_, vols. _I_ and _II_,
already mentioned, remains the best treatment of the period of 1850-60.
T. C. Smith's _Parties and Slavery_, in _American Nation_ series (1906),
and McMaster's _History of the United States_, vol. _VIII_, are very
valuable. T. P. Kettell's _Southern Wealth and Northern Profits_ (New
York, 1860), is a suggestive study in sectionalism not too well known to
scholars. But the _Census Reports_ of 1850 and 1860; J. E. B. DeBow's
_Industrial Resources of the South and West_ (1857); and U.S. Senate
_Executive Documents_, no. 38, part 1, 52d Cong., 1st Sess., supply the
needful statistics on population, crops, manufactures, and finance.
Freeman Hunt's _Lives of American Merchants_, 2 vols. (New York, 1858),
gives some interesting information about leading _ante-bellum_ merchants
and manufacturers. And the volumes of _Hunt's Merchant's Magazine_,
1839-60, _DeBow's Review_, 1846-60, and the _American Banker's Magazine_
for the same period are storehouses of the economic history of the time,
K. Coman's _Industrial History of the United States_ (1910); E. L.
Bogart's _The Economic History of the United States_ (1908); and Horace
White's _Money and Banking Illustrated by American History_ (1911), are
the best special works in their several lines.

                                  CHAPTER XI

                               AMERICAN CULTURE

Four fifths of the people of the United States of 1860 lived in the
country, and it is perhaps fair to say that half of these dwelt in log
houses of one or two rooms. Comforts such as most of us enjoy daily were
as good as unknown. Even in the cities baths were exceedingly rare,
while in the country the very decencies of life were neglected.
Mosquitoes, flies, and other germ-harboring pests were regarded with
equanimity, screens and disinfectants being used only in the best of
hospitals. Malaria, typhoid, and other diseases claimed a large toll
upon life each year. Physicians were less numerous than now and their
art was only in its infancy. Trained nurses were just coming into their
present rôle. Men regarded sickness as a visitation of Providence, and
when the yellow fever epidemics seized the lower Southern cities, the
losses and suffering were such as the present generation cannot

Improvements in the matter of dress since 1830 were evident, but for the
workaday world shirtsleeves, heavy brogan boots and shoes, and rough
wool hats were, of course, the rule. Salt bacon and "greens," with corn
bread and thin coffee, composed the common diet, though milk and butter
relieved the monotonous fare for the farmers. "Hog-killing time" was
always a happy season, for fresh meats were then abundant. Only in the
larger towns did the people have fresh meats throughout the year. An
explanation of the enthusiasm of _ante-bellum_ people for political
speaking is found in the fact that barbecues either preceded or followed
the oratory; and to a man who had lived for months on fat bacon and corn
bread a fresh roast pig was a delight which would enable him to endure
long hours of poor speaking. But in the cities and towns there was, of
course, a better life. Frame houses, two stories high, painted white and
adorned with green window blinds, were everywhere in good form, except
where men were able to build brick or stone mansions or maintain the
establishments of wealthy ancestors. In the South it was still the
custom to guard the entrances to great plantation houses with chiseled
lions or crouching greyhounds; in the East more attention was paid to
flowers and shrubbery. Wealthy families of the East sometimes maintained
more than one house servant, but the greater number counted themselves
eminently respectable with cook, maid, and house girl all in one, and
the pay was one or two dollars a week. Liveries and silver plate
persisted mainly in the very exclusive circles of Philadelphia and New
York, in Washington, and on the great plantations.

Factory hands and common laborers worked twelve hours a day under
circumstances and conditions hardly better than those of 1830, for labor
unions had only begun their agitation, and foreign immigrants were
always ready to accept work without asking any questions. One or two
States had passed laws regulating hours of labor; but none had thought
of the cost to the race of hard toil and long hours for women and
children, and most men regarded the builder of a mill as a public
benefactor because he furnished employment to just this element of the
population. A man who had steady work on a farm was paid from ten to
fifteen dollars a month with board; a day-laborer received a dollar a
day without perquisites. Skilled laborers were paid two dollars a day in
the South and slightly less in the East. The industrial belt continued
to draw upon the country districts of the East, which, with the
continued migration to the West, greatly impoverished the rural life and
resulted in many abandoned farms. In the city housing conditions of the
poor were worse if anything than they had been thirty years before.
Crowded tenements, filthy streets, flies, and vermin abounded. Under the
English common law accidents in the mills were matters of concern only
to the employees, and the human toll of the railways was enormous. Years
of toil, a worn-out frame, a dependent old age, and finally the potter's
field was the weary round of life to the millions of dependent people
who swarmed about the industrial centers.

Under the pressure of outside criticism and the influence of religion,
the lot of the slave was mending, though there was room enough for
improvement. From sun to sun was always the plantation day, and the
weekly ration was a peck of meal and four pounds of meat--salted "side
meat" packed in Cincinnati or Chicago. Each negro family had a
single-room cabin, where man, wife, and a dozen children were tucked
away in the loft or slept on the floor, though there was usually a bed
for the parents. There was, however, always plenty of fresh air, a big
open fireplace, and generally shade trees about the negro quarters,
which conditions probably account for the lower mortality rate in the
South than in the East. Of clothing the slave had only what was
absolutely necessary, children being limited to a single garment which
reached slightly below the knees. Against accidents and disease more
precautions were taken by masters of plantations than by masters of
mills, for the life of a negro man or child-bearing woman was equal to
twelve hundred dollars. Heavy ditching in malarial swamps was therefore
done by Irishmen, whose lives were less important to the planter.
Physicians were promptly called for the slaves, and women in labor were
generally cared for, because a negro baby was worth one hundred dollars.

If there was some public concern for the slaves in the fields and some
beginnings of legislation on the conditions of employment in the
industrial States, there was no thought for the isolated, lean,
heavy-fisted farmer of the Southern up-country or the Western prairies.
Land was still cheap, crops were increasing in bulk and value every
year. Nor did the farmer desire the attentions of society, provided the
new railroads were laid through his districts and rates were not too
exorbitant. He worked hard for a few months, then rested till harvest
time, after which he hunted and fished. During the long cold winters of
the Northwest he sat in his chimney corner or tended his cattle. Few
thought of fertilizing their land; terracing against rains and floods
was almost unknown, and for most farmers plowing was done up and down
the hills, which only hastened the washing-away process so
characteristic of the Southern agriculture. Very few farmers thought it
worth while to rotate their crops when fresh lands were to be had at a
few dollars an acre. The area of the United States seemed limitless, and
hardly a tenth of its arable land had ever been brought under
cultivation. The inventions of 1840-50 enabled the Western farmer to
grow larger crops, and harvest time was not so burdensome; corn-shellers
and grain-fans shortened the hours of labor for the men. Sewing-machines
and the revolving churns from the factories gave some relief to the
women, whose round of labor, milking, cooking, cleaning, washing, and
attending children, was still almost ceaseless. Even the picnics and
barbecues offered little to them, for they must still prepare the great
baskets of food and serve their lords and masters while they deliberated
on "bleeding Kansas," new railroad schemes, or negro slavery.

Whether the lot of the landless and the less talented had improved since
the day of Jackson would be hard to determine. If it was easier to
purchase land, or if there was an actual increase in wages, the number
of the poorer class of Americans had increased both actually and
relatively, and thus competition operated to prevent improved housing
and a better country life. Still the life of the great majority in the
United States was less grinding than that of Europeans of the same
class, and the opportunity for a poor man to rise in the social and
economic scale was distinctly better. That is what made America the
Mecca of so many thousands during the decade of 1850-60. Yet illiteracy
and dependency, causes and results of poverty, were almost appalling.
Georgia had a population of 43,684 white illiterates, to say nothing of
the 500,000 blacks; Massachusetts had 46,262; Indiana, 60,943;
Pennsylvania, 72,156, and North Carolina, 68,128. There were 101 persons
in the jails of Georgia on June 1, 1860; Virginia had 189;
Massachusetts, 1161, and Illinois, 485. In the open life of the South
and West, where men could easily get to the land, there was little crime
and jails were often empty; in the industrial belt the prisons were
always occupied. In like manner and for the same reasons Southern and
Western hospitals for the insane and homes for the poor often showed
very small percentages of these unfortunates. Perhaps the unrelieved
poverty of the industrial workers and the stress of uncertainty in the
matter of employment made the differences. Certainly the weight of the
old English common law system, adopted in all the States, bore hardly on
the dependent classes of the East; and the courts were not loath to send
undefended men to prison. In the South the worker was punished by his
master on the plantation for all the minor offenses, and it was only
free negroes and the poorer whites who were the subjects of the ordinary
social discipline and punishment.

The abounding wealth and strenuous zest of American life were creating
just those gradations in society and distinctions of caste against which
constitutions and laws inveighed. On the broad basis of African slavery
the enterprising Southerner had built and was now perfecting a social
class hardly inferior to the aristocracies of Europe. Soft hands and
exclusive manners were there as elsewhere in the world the evidences of
a gentle life; sturdy personal independence and rough ways, here as in
England, were the marks of middle-class training, through which recruits
to the privileged order had generally come. Openly and on all proper
occasions the Southerners announced the break-down of democracy and the
benefits of a cultured élite; the few thousand "first families," who
lived upon the incomes of plantations, spent their winters in New
Orleans, their springs in Charleston, and their summers at the Virginia
springs. Among these, tutors were engaged to train children, and every
man had his valet, every lady her maid. Travel in Europe, sojourns at
Newport and Saratoga, and acquaintance with the best hotels of
Philadelphia and New York were common to this group of most attractive
people. When Congress was in session, they dominated the social life of
the capital, gave elaborate balls, and brought effective pressure to
bear upon aspiring Eastern and Western public leaders. Douglas had
married a beautiful North Carolina heiress, the wife of Jefferson Davis
was the granddaughter of a governor of New Jersey, and even William H.
Seward was strongly influenced by the graces of his planter friends.
Senators, representatives, and judges of the federal courts owned
estates in the lower South which yielded incomes ofttimes greater than
their official salaries. The very flower and beauty of the land were
Southern gentlemen like Robert E. Lee and Wade Hampton, or ladies like
the sprightly Mrs. Chestnut or the genial Mrs. Pryor.

Nor did the commercial and industrial life of the East fail to produce a
similar fruit. If the Eastern gentleman were less dependent on his valet
and less averse to work with his hands, he was nevertheless a gentleman,
and the chasm between him and the toiler in the mills was difficult to
bridge. There was nowhere in the United States a more exclusive society
than that in which the Danas and the Winthrops of Boston moved. And the
New England élite were never so happy as when they could run off to
England and frequent the dinners and receptions of the British
aristocracy; both the manners and the ideals of the Eastern upper class
resembled strikingly those of the "best people" of Old England. It was
all in striking contrast to the ideals of the Puritans of old times, but
it was natural. In New England, as in the South, democracy was flouted
and a privileged position greatly prized. The old American "equality"
was only skin deep, as any one would have recognized if he had attempted
familiarities with either the Eastern or the Southern social leaders.
The difference was that the one group lived in cities when they were at
home, and the other in the country.

Nor was this American social life scorned by European noblemen. Charles
Sumner was always welcome in the greatest houses of London, and the
Slidells and the Masons of the South received no less flattering
attentions from their European economic and social kinsmen. One of
Bismarck's most intimate friends was John L. Motley, and the friendship
had been contracted long before Motley had won fame as a historian.
American heiresses had already found suitors among the British nobility.
The kinship of Eastern social life with that of Europe was recognized,
and the relations of the well-to-do at the North with the wealthy of the
South were many and intimate. Thus in America as elsewhere talent,
birth, and money produced social strata, and before 1860 the
distinctions of class were only less sharply drawn here than in the
older countries of the world.

But, next to the very necessaries of life, religion was the most
important subject to Americans of 1860. The Puritan spirit, while losing
some of its hold in New England, had captured the people of the rest of
the country. Except as to the Catholics and the Episcopalians, all
Americans were born, or thought themselves born, utterly depraved and
weighted down with the sin of Adam and Eve, their "first parents," from
which burden the only way of escape was through prayer and agony of
soul. Even this prospect was denied to many, for some influential
religious teachers urged that God could not hear the supplications of
sinners. These must await the call of Heaven, and if this failed, they
were bound for the "lake of fire," whence there was no return. The
intelligent and well-informed spoke with all seriousness of "getting
religion," and in the vast country districts the most suitable season
for this was the hot July and August days. Revivals among nearly all the
leading denominations were held at this time in the churches or under
widespread arbors made from the branches of trees. The preaching and the
singing were not unlike that which brought the Germans of the eighth
century to the Roman communion. The other worlds were just two: one the
city of the golden gates and pearly streets, the other the bottomless
pit of liquid fire into which Satan would surely plunge all who failed
to make their peace with God in this life. The old Puritan lines
formerly learned by every child--

         "God's vengeance feeds the flame
          With piles of wood and brimstone flood,
          That none can quench the same"--

represented to most people of the decade just preceding the Civil War
all they said. Both old men and young children dreamed of the awful
retribution which awaited them in the other world.

And there was a fiery zeal in the work of saving men's souls from the
wrath to come which showed that it was no figurative faith which moved
the preachers and their co-workers. A song sung by all ran in one of its
favorite stanzas:--

        "Must I be carried to the skies
          On flow'ry beds of ease,
         While others fought to win the prize
          And sailed through bloody seas?"

Excitement naturally overcame many, and they rushed forward to the
mourner's benches in front of the altar and cried out for mercy, or
silently prayed for days and weeks till the light "broke upon them" and
they went forth shouting for joy. These then became exhorters, and moved
among their friends in the congregation, begging them to yield their
"proud and haughty spirits" ere it should be too late. At times scores
of penitents would be on their knees in the spaces about the altar,
others would be "laboring" with the sinners not yet stricken, and still
others thanking God in loud voices for their delivery from sin and
Satan, whom all regarded as an active demon always seeking whom he might

In the South the deism which had influenced the generation led by
Washington and Jefferson had given way to the stern faith of the
Calvinists, for whether one were Presbyterian, Baptist, Methodist, or
Campbellite, the essentials of his religion were the same. Wealthy
planters, small farmers, and negro slaves sought the salvation of their
souls in the same churches and under the same preachers. In fact it was
common for men to be told by their pastors that unless they were willing
to sit down in heaven by the side of the "poor slave" they could not be
saved, and the slave often begged his master to accept the terms of
salvation. A few great planters who were not touched by the religious
fervor of the time held aloof, and the poorer whites and the slaves came
to accept the view that these were the rich men who could not be saved,
and commonly said hell was their unavoidable portion.

In the East, save in the Unitarian and Episcopalian churches, there was
the same religious realism. In the great revivals of 1857 earnest men
and great congregations prayed aloud that God might convert the
heretical Theodore Parker, or that, if he were not a subject of grace,
as many believed he was not, he might be taken from this world, where he
was doing infinite mischief. Of course he was to be consigned
immediately to the "fiery furnace below." And the greatest of American
preachers, Henry Ward Beecher, in the same revival, gathered about him
the hard-headed business men of New York City and together they prayed
that wicked playwrights and worldly-minded theater-goers might be
brought to a realizing sense of the shame of their conduct, and that the
houses of their frivolous vice might be converted into temples of
Christian worship. Again, those who would not heed the solemn warnings
of the pulpit were "given up," and the Heavenly Father was asked to
remove them "hence."

The influence of this sense of the awfulness of the after life to those
who might not be saved was far-reaching. The farmer, driven by the hard
necessity of making a living for himself and family to remain away from
church, meditated sorrowfully as he followed his plow, and often at the
end of his furrow fell upon his knees and besought the Creator to save
his undying soul and spare him the everlasting torture of the damned. A
popular little gift book, published by the American Tract Society of New
York, was entitled _Passing Over Jordan_, and on an early page we find
the following typical lines:--

          "My thoughts on awful subjects roll,
            Damnation and the dead:
           What horrors seize my guilty soul
            Upon a dying bed."

And a young woman who received this as a New Year's present was a
perfectly normal girl of Cincinnati and the daughter of a prominent
family there.

What was happening in the United States during the thirty years we are
studying was the saving of the people from the rough and often coarse
and sensual life of the frontier. Under conditions such as have been
described the influence and power of the preacher in young America were
extraordinary. And the clergy deserved the authority they exercised.
Never before the war was a Methodist bishop even charged with immoral
conduct. The standards of the Baptists and Presbyterians were equally
high. The preachers who called men to repentance were beyond question of
the highest character. Earnest, sincere, overwhelmed with the sense of
their responsibility, they "preached the Word with power," and the Word
was the Bible which all believed implicitly from cover to cover. It was
not clear to preacher or congregation how God spoke to man first in the
Hebrew of the Old Testament, then in the Greek of the New Testament, and
finally in the Authorized Version of James I. But it mattered not; the
Bible was inspired by the Heavenly Father, for it was so stated in
Revelation, and a curse was held up for him who denied its truth or so
much as removed one syllable or added a line. It was the authority of
the Bible as preached by Martin Luther and John Calvin, and the
interpreters of the Sacred Book were the clergy, not the Pope or some
distant sacerdotal see.

Just how many people were members of the churches it would be very
difficult accurately to determine. The Methodists of the South numbered
nearly a million in 1860, those of the North were equally strong. The
Baptists, North, South, and West, were nearly as numerous. The
Presbyterians, Congregationalists, and Christians (Campbellites) had
each some hundreds of thousands of members. All the churches, including
Catholics, offered seating accommodations for about 20,000,000 of the
31,000,000 people of the country; which is a large proportion. And from
the census returns, it seems that church accommodations were always best
and most plentiful in the older communities, the East having almost as
many pews as there were people. The South could seat 6,500,000
worshipers,--that is, a little more than half of the population; the
Northwest was able to accommodate only about 4,000,000.

With Protestant churches so powerful and their ministers so influential,
it is only natural that the religious teachings of the time should have
told in politics and the sectional struggle. The Southerners believed
almost implicitly in the claim of their great Presbyterian preacher, B.
M. Palmer, when he declared in 1860: "In this great struggle, we defend
the cause of God and religion; it is our solemn duty to ourselves, to
our slaves, to the world, and to Almighty God to preserve and transmit
our existing system of domestic servitude, with the right, unchallenged
by man, to go and root itself wherever Providence and Nature may carry
it." Methodists, Baptists, Catholics, and all other important bodies of
Christians in the South held and taught the same doctrine. In the
Northwest there was some hesitation about going so far, but the majority
undoubtedly believed with Dr. Nathan L. Rice, of Chicago, that slavery
was divinely established and not to be disturbed by man. In the East
some of the Unitarians taught abolition and supported Garrison and
Phillips; more of the Congregationalists were of the same mind. But in
Boston, New York, and Philadelphia the greater clergy had come to regret
the former tendency to denounce slavery, and they were inclined to
preach the doctrine that Providence had established slavery and that it
should be left to Providence to remove it in due time. Only in the rural
districts of the East, where the old New England spirit still
flourished, was slavery declared to be "the awful curse." And here it
was that the old sectional hatred was strongest. The churches and the
clergy with all their influence had thus given up the problem of
slavery, and their counsel and advice were to maintain the Union and to
put down all sectional conflict. Nationalism with the South dominant was
the meaning of this; nor do the election returns of 1852 and 1856 make a
different showing.

Where religious influences were so potent, it was natural that the
clergy should exert themselves for the education of the young. Yale
College was a "school of the prophets" which sent out to the West the
young preachers and teachers so much needed if Congregationalism was to
hold its own in that region. Princeton was Presbyterian headquarters for
both West and South, and few institutions have ever exerted a greater
civilizing force in a new nation than that school of sternest theology.
Dr. Charles Hodge was there a tower of orthodox and conservative
strength which could be seen from afar. In numerous other institutions
the Methodists, Baptists, Congregationalists, Friends, and Campbellites
trained their ministers and urged upon all the importance of education.
At the University of Virginia there were chaplains maintained by the
different denominations for the religious instruction of the students.
The Methodists of Michigan regularly appointed a professor to the state
university for the same purpose. Other state universities, like those of
Indiana and North Carolina, were brought under practical denominational
control through the zealous activity of Presbyterian presidents.

The education of the little children was, however, too much for the most
zealous of religious organizations. Jefferson had set in motion
influences which had greatly strengthened the cause of popular education
in the South and West. But nowhere did the States prepare fully for the
work. In the Northwest the public school lands were wasted by
thoughtless or venal politicians, and in the older South the label,
"school for the children of the poor," went far to defeat all efforts
made by legislatures on behalf of good public school systems. In the
period of 1840-50 Horace Mann revived the New England interest in
education and laid the foundations for the school systems of to-day.
Even so ardent a Southerner as William L. Yancey, of Alabama, became a
disciple of the New England reformer, and tried to do a similar work in
his State. In Indiana, Illinois, and the other Western States
educational reforms followed. There were in consequence about 5,000,000
children in school in the year 1860. Of these the South had 796,000, the
Northwest, exclusive of California, 2,005,196, and the East, 2,011,826;
which shows that Southern public opinion had not yet been aroused to
the importance of the subject. But the figures for illiteracy, already
given, do not show a worse condition among the whites of the South than
is shown in the Northwestern States.

If the returns for college education be taken, the balance among the
sections is fairly reëstablished. There were 25,882 college students in
the South in 1860, and this does not take into account the large number
of Southern students in Eastern institutions like Princeton and Harvard.
There were at the same time 16,959 college students in the Northwest,
and 10,449 in the East.

Between education and the attainments of science and invention there is
some connection, though genius often defies all conventional methods of
instruction. In addition to the epoch-making inventions of McCormick and
his competitors, Samuel F. B. Morse had perfected his electric
telegraph, which was in operation in most of the countries of Europe
before 1860. Richard M. Hoe revolutionized newspaper publishing in the
late forties by his rotary printing-press, which put out thousands of
copies of a paper in an hour. Nor was Elias Howe's sewing-machine any
less of a wonder when it came into use about 1850. Draper and Morse's
new photography, Thurber's typewriter, Woodruff's sleeping-car, and many
other marvelous contrivances of the same period showed the fertility of
the American inventive genius.

In scientific research the United States could not present so many
evidences of her success, though in 1860 Alexander Dallas Bache, the
head of the Coast Survey, was counted one of the leading scientists of
his time, and Louis Agassiz, the Swiss-American naturalist, was teaching
now in Charleston, now in the Lawrence Scientific School at Harvard, and
beginning the great work, _Contributions to the Natural History of the
United States_, which his son, Alexander, was to complete. Joseph Henry,
the first head of the Smithsonian Institution, was equally well known,
and he and Professor Bache were the backbones of the American National
Academy of Science, just beginning its beneficent work. Silliman, of
Yale, and Mitchell, of the University of North Carolina, were the
best-known geologists.

Nor was art degenerating in this period of great prosperity. Hiram
Powers, of Cincinnati, the ablest sculptor of his country, was greatly
hurt because Congress refused him the contract for the decorative work
on the magnificent Capitol in Washington, at last nearing completion.
His aspirations were not unreasonable, for his Greek Slave, a beautiful
work in marble, had captured the imagination of both American and
foreign critics in 1851. Still, Thomas Crawford, his successful
competitor, was a sculptor of real gifts, as one may see in his statues
of Jefferson and Patrick Henry in Richmond. The work of Allston, Sully,
and De Veaux, the painters, was being improved upon by Chester Harding,
Eastman Johnson, and William Morris Hunt, all influenced, however, by
Turner of England, the Düsseldorf (Germany) and Barbizon (France)
schools. There were now many wealthy business men in the country, and
thus artists had a fair chance of a livelihood while their ideals and
technique were developing. In Boston, New York, and Philadelphia were
the beginnings of the museums which were a few years later to become
schools of art of no mean importance.

But the flower of American culture was its literature. To be sure
Edgar Allan Poe, whose _Raven_ and short stories were ere long to
give him the first rank among all American men of letters, had been
suffered to starve in the midst of New York's millions in 1849,
and Hawthorne found it very difficult to find the means of a meager
livelihood in Massachusetts. If the _Raven_ and the _Scarlet Letter_
were born unwelcome, Ralph Waldo Emerson was making a living as
author and sage of his generation, and there were others of the
Transcendentalists--Thoreau, the woodland poet, Margaret Fuller, the
woman knight-errant, recently drowned at sea, and Amos Bronson
Alcott--whose writings appeared in standard editions and who lived by
their pens. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, a professor at Harvard till
1854, though savagely criticized by Poe and Margaret Fuller, had won the
American heart in his _Village Blacksmith_ and _Evangeline_. He scored
his greatest triumph in _Miles Standish_ in 1858. And another Harvard
professor, Oliver Wendell Holmes, was just coming into a national
reputation in 1860 by his _Autocrat of the Breakfast Table_ and other
similar writings.

A more radical poet was John Greenleaf Whittier, contributor to the
_National Era_, a radical anti-slavery journal which first gave
publicity to Mrs. Harriet Beecher Stowe's famous _Uncle Tom's Cabin_.
Whittier's _Ichabod_, which appeared in 1850, and is already quoted in
these pages, gave its author a devoted following among the radicals and
hastened Webster to his grave. Mrs. Stowe's work was perhaps the most
influential book ever written by an American, though it hardly ranks as
literature. Of a similarly intense nature was James Russell Lowell,
whose _Biglow Papers_ of 1846 to 1857 unmercifully lampooned the party
which waged the war on Mexico and ridiculed the leaders of the South and
West. Succeeding Longfellow at Harvard, Lowell helped to establish in
1857 the _Atlantic Monthly_, which still remains the best of American

There was nowhere else in the country such a school of literary men as
this of New England, though in Charleston William Gilmore Simms was
still publishing historical novels, espousing the cause of Southern
literature in _Russell's Magazine_, and stimulating the ambitions of
young men. One of his pupils, Henry Timrod, whose _At Magnolia Cemetery_
is likely to prove immortal, was worthy to be compared with Poe; and
another, Paul Hamilton Hayne, certainly deserved a higher rank and a
better fortune than either of these struggling poets has been accorded.
But perhaps the most original writings of the time were those of a
certain group of obscure men in Georgia and the lower South. A. B.
Longstreet, the author of _Georgia Scenes_, William Tappan Thompson, of
_Major Jones's Courtship_, and Joseph B. Baldwin, of _Flush Times in
Alabama and Mississippi_, struck a rich vein of ludicrous humor which
Mark Twain worked out after the war.

In Richmond the _Southern Literary Messenger_ was still the
clearing-house for Southern writers, and _De Bow's Review_ was eminent
in the field of social and economic studies. New York City had, however,
become the Mecca of the men who had manuscripts to submit. There the
Harper Brothers published their _Harper's Magazine_, which went to
150,000 subscribers, we are told, each month, and the _Knickerbocker
Magazine_, distinguished by the contributions of Washington Irving, the
Nestor of American writers, tried to keep pace. Both the Harpers and the
Putnams did an enormous business in books of all kinds, now that so many
Americans had grown rich. Walter Scott's novels were imported for the
South in carload lots, while Dickens's numberless volumes found ready
sale in the East, thus showing the different tastes of the sections.

And the historians had increased their vogue with a people just
beginning to realize that they had ancestors and taking a becoming pride
in their early history. Bancroft's _History of the United States_ was
sold in all sections in a way that would astound present-day historians.
Richard Hildreth, a sturdy partisan, added his six volumes to Bancroft's
in 1849-54 by way of antidote; and George Tucker, of the University of
Virginia, still further "corrected" the history of his country, the
better to suit the tastes of Southerners. John L. Motley published his
_Rise of the Dutch Republic_ in 1856 at his own expense, and suddenly
found himself one of the foremost historians of his time, his work being
quickly translated into all the important languages of Europe. William
H. Prescott, an older man and a greater historian, already well known
for his _Reign of Ferdinand and Isabella_, gave to the printer his
_Reign of Philip II_ in 1855-58, and easily maintained his supremacy in
the field of history.

It was an aspiring generation that produced Poe, Hawthorne, Lowell, and
the rest, and if one considers the character of American culture, its
lack of unity, and the still youthful nature of its people, it is easy
to understand the pride in its budding art and maturer literature, the
sensitiveness to foreign criticism, the provincialism which demands
attention and a "place in the sun." Carlyle's scorn and Macaulay's
contempt were indeed as irritating as they were unjust, for America had
gone a long way since the rough backwoodsman, Andrew Jackson, came to
the Presidency by almost unanimous consent in 1829.


James Ford Rhodes in his _History of the United States_, vol. _I_, chap.
_IV_, gives an account of social conditions in the South just prior to
the war and, in vol. _III_, chap. _XII_, there is a similar picture of
conditions in the North. McMaster's last volume describes the life of
the people for this period. But I have found most valuable information
in works of travel like F. L. Olmsted's _A Journey in the Seaboard Slave
States_ (1856) and _A Journey Through the Back Country_ (1863), W. H.
Russell's _My Diary North and South_ (1863), Sir Charles Lyell's _A
Second Visit to the United States_ (1849), Peter Cartwright's
_Autobiography_ (1856), and James Dixon's _Personal Narrative_ (1849);
and in John Weiss's _Life and Correspondence of Theodore Parker_ (1864);
Beecher and Scoville's _Biography of Henry Ward Beecher_ (1888); W. E.
Hatcher's _Life of J. B. Jeter_ (1887); T. C. Johnson's _The Life and
Letters of Benjamin Morgan Palmer_ (1906); and the valuable _American
Church History_ series (1893-97). On American sculpture Lorado Taft's
_American Sculpture_ (1903), and Charles H. Caffin's _American Masters
of Sculpture_ (1903), are useful and discriminating. Caffin has also
written _The Story of American Painting_ (1907), which is perhaps the
best short account of the subject. For a good view of the literary and
publishing interests of 1860, W. P. Trent's _A History of American
Literature_ (1903) is most valuable, and W. B. Cairns's _A History of
American Literature_ (1912) is likewise important. George H. Putnam's
_George Palmer Putnam: A Memoir_ (1912) and J. H. Harper's _The House of
Harper_ (1912) give important information about the rise of the
publishing houses. Of course _De Bow's Review_, _Resources of the South
and West_, and the _Reports of the Census_ for 1850 and 1860 are

                                  CHAPTER XII

                              STEPHEN A. DOUGLAS

If the two preceding chapters have shown that the larger social and
economic interests tended strongly toward the elimination of sectional
hostility, political conditions and party vows gave even stronger
assurances that there should be no more conflicts like those of 1833 and
1850. Yet there was one section of the country which was a sort of storm
center, the Northwest. There a wide expanse of rich lands held by
Indians, a rapidly increasing population, and great annual harvests of
wheat and corn, selling at high prices, created a condition not unlike
that of the lower South when Jackson became President. Removal of the
Indians from the fertile areas of the Nebraska country, the creation of
new Territories, and the building of railroads connecting the wheat and
corn areas with Chicago and the Eastern markets were the demands of the
Northwest in 1853, and a really great party leader would have seen the
problem and his duty.

But Pierce was not a great leader. In the make-up of his Cabinet he
chose William L. Marcy, of New York, for Secretary of State, James
Campbell, of Pennsylvania, for Postmaster-General, and Caleb Cushing, of
Massachusetts, for Attorney-General, all of whom were close political
allies of the South. Jefferson Davis, of Mississippi, became Secretary
of War, and James C. Dobbin, of North Carolina, Secretary of the Navy.
Both of these were extreme pro-slavery men. From the West, James
Guthrie, of Kentucky, and Robert McClelland, of Michigan, were taken
into the President's Council, the one to be Secretary of the Treasury
and the other the head of the Department of the Interior. Although
Douglas had been the strongest candidate for the nomination for the
Presidency before the recent Democratic Convention, neither he nor any
of his friends was selected. Nor did it seem wise to those who were then
shaping the destinies of the country to conciliate the still powerful
anti-slavery element of the East.

Looking backwards the new Administration found three lines of procedure
open to it, all suggested by President Polk in his later messages to
Congress. One of these was the closer attachment of California to the
rest of the country, another was the purchase of Cuba as a makeweight to
the growing Northwest, and the third was the rapid expansion of American
commerce by federal subsidies to shipping and the opening of new
channels of trade.

To carry into effect the first of these, James Gadsden, an able railroad
president of South Carolina, was sent to Mexico to purchase a large
strip of land lying along the southern border of New Mexico and thus
make easy the building of a national railway from Memphis to San
Francisco, for the lowest passes over the Rocky Mountains were in this
region. Gadsden returned in the autumn successful. For $10,000,000 he
had secured 50,000 square miles of territory, and the way was open for
the Government to lay its plans for the greatest undertaking ever
proposed by the most latitudinarian politicians. Davis, hitherto an
extreme States-rights leader and disciple of Calhoun, worked out the
program. The constitutional authority for building a Pacific railroad
was deduced from the "war powers" of the Federal Government, and, though
it was not definitely stated that the road should pass through the
recent annexation, it was commonly understood that such was the purpose
of the President and that the lower South was to be the economic and
social beneficiary of the great improvement. Arkansas, Texas, and
California were willing and anxious to build the parts of the road that
passed through their territory. With the exception of a group of
Gulf-city representatives and some of the up-country Democrats of the
older South, the leaders of the party approved the plan, and Pierce made
the Pacific railroad the burden of his first annual message to Congress.
Congress voted the money for the preliminary survey of five routes to
the Pacific, and confided the work to Jefferson Davis, the recognized
leader of the Administration. The people of the country, long familiar
with the arguments of Asa Whitney and others in favor of such an
undertaking, made no objection, though men of political foresight saw
the far-reaching purposes of the scheme.

To effect the second object of the Democratic program, the purchase of
Cuba, Pierre Soulé, of Louisiana, was sent to Spain. Soulé was one of
the most ardent of Southern expansionists, and his mission was not
relished at Madrid any more than it was approved by conservative
Eastern Democrats. In support of the new Spanish Minister, John Y.
Mason, of Virginia, and James Buchanan, of Pennsylvania, both former
members of the Polk Cabinet, were sent as Ministers to France and
England respectively. Soulé made little progress till the Black Warrior,
an American coasting vessel, was seized in 1854 by the Spanish
authorities in Havana and searched in the expectation of finding
evidence that the people of the United States were still assisting the
Cuban insurrectionists. No proof was discovered, and the people of the
country, especially those of the South, were greatly excited; for a time
it seemed that war would ensue. Davis and Soulé pressed the case upon
the President, at the risk of war and perhaps in the hope that war would
follow and that thus Cuba, so long coveted, would fall into the lap of
the United States. But Marcy, though ambitious of annexing Cuba, was
hard pressed by Eastern public opinion, and he persuaded Pierce to
recall his hasty minister. This was not done, however, until the three
ministers concerned had met at Ostend in the autumn of 1855 and
published to the world the manifesto which declared it to be the purpose
of their Government not to allow any other European country to get
possession of Cuba, and which further stated that the United States was
always ready to pay a fair price for the island. A more moderate man
succeeded Soulé, but the subject was pressed at Madrid with increasing
persistence during the remainder of that and the next Administration.

The third item of the Democratic policy, the expansion of American
commerce, was furthered by a continuation of the subsidies to steamship
companies like the Collins line, which put upon the ocean many vessels
of the best and largest build. Even more was planned in offering Robert
J. Walker the mission to China, and the appointment of Townsend Harris,
a wealthy New York merchant, as consul to Ningpo, Japan. Walker
declined, but Harris accepted, and within two years, with the assistance
of Commodore Perry, he succeeded in opening the hermit kingdom to the
civilization and commerce of the United States. It was the beginning of
modern Japan, and it marked a new stage in the development of American
trade in the Orient. In all these measures Pierce met with some
opposition in the East, particularly in the rough handling of the Cuban
question; and there was much dislike of the Southern filibustering
against Lower California and, especially at the close of the
Administration, against Nicaragua, which was seized by William Walker,
the Tennessee imperialist already mentioned, and proclaimed in 1856 a
slave State. But the opposition was rather to the spirit and tone of
things, and the very plain subserviency of the President to Southern
wishes, than against expansion as such. The real resistance to Pierce
came on another matter and in the most unexpected way, in the struggle
over the Kansas-Nebraska Bill.

The stone rejected of the builders really became the head of the corner,
for in spite of all that the Pierce Administration could do, the problem
of the Northwest, which Douglas personified, became the bone of
contention between the sections, and again, as in 1850, the South, the
East, and the Northwest struggled for supremacy. When the Davis plans
for a southern Pacific railroad were maturing, Senator Douglas, the head
of the Senate Committee on Territories, was preparing to renew his
six-year fight for the opening of the wide Nebraska hinterland of his
section. The squatters of the Kansas and the Platte River Valleys were
already confronted with hostile Indians who protested against the
unlawful seizure of their lands. And now that wheat and corn were
becoming great staple crops, the Northwestern pioneers were loudly
demanding that the natives should not be permitted to cumber the ground.
They must move on to the arid desert beyond or be carried into the
Southern country, which Davis, as we have seen, was trying to open to
Southern pioneers. It was a real conflict of interest between the lower
South and the Northwest, and in order to win, the Northwestern
politicians must find allies in the East as Clay had done in 1825-36,
though Douglas as an "old-line" Democrat could not so readily see this.

He resorted to management and _finesse_. He found two delegates from
Nebraska in Washington in December, 1853, one from what was soon to be
Kansas, the other from the pioneers of Nebraska. It was natural,
therefore, for him to change his Nebraska bill of the former sessions
into a bill for the creation of two Territories, with the two rival
delegates as their prospective spokesmen in Congress. Besides, Douglas,
who was a consummate politician, would have two more loyal followers and
two other embryo States in his wing of the Democratic party.

[Illustration: Conflicting Sectional Interests, 1850-1860]

Hence Douglas prepared for the removal of the Indians, for the creation
of two Territories instead of one, and he enlisted in his cause the
Senators and Representatives of Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, and Wisconsin,
by showing them that their own schemes for the granting of public lands
to assist in the building of railroads would be furthered by their
voting for the opening of Nebraska. Every economic and political
instinct of the people of the Northwest tended to enlist them in the
cause of Douglas and Nebraska. And it was known to most of the Chicago
public and big business men that a Pacific railroad was to be laid from
Council Bluffs, a point already in railroad connection with Chicago, to
San Francisco, in the event of the rapid development of the Platte River
country. But St. Louis and Missouri leaders would oppose this because
they had been fighting since 1848 to get a railway to the Pacific
directly from Kansas City.

There was, however, a vigorous pro-slavery party in Missouri, led by
David Atchison. This party had overthrown Benton, and their first
purpose was the making of Kansas a slave State. It was the western half
of Missouri which now controlled the State, and the commercial element
of St. Louis, to which the Pacific railroad was so attractive, was in
the minority. Douglas won Atchison and western Missouri to his plans by
holding out to them that their contention, as old as Missouri itself,
that the Compromise of 1820 was unconstitutional, might be granted by
Congress. When this was fully appreciated, Kentucky and Tennessee
leaders became interested. Southern newspapers took up the discussion
and Douglas immediately became a statesman. Even Jefferson Davis was led
to commit himself to the new Kansas-Nebraska Bill when the anti-slavery
men of the East began to attack it. And on Sunday, January 22, Pierce
promised Douglas the official support of the Administration.

The bill now provided for two Territories west of the Missouri River,
for the formal repeal of the Missouri Compromise, and for the adoption
of the old Cass doctrine of popular sovereignty, whereby the settlers in
the new communities were to determine for themselves whether they would
have slaves or not. If any dispute arose as to this a test was to be
made of the question in the United States courts. This looked like a
surrender of a large part of the public domain to the South, and the
repeal of the semi-sacred Compromise was perhaps the boldest proposition
that had ever been offered in Congress. Still the great purpose was the
development of the Northwest, and wise public men might have seen that
the populous free States of the Northwest would inevitably win and make
the 400,000 square miles of Nebraska free territory; and if the railroad
bills which Douglas supported and tied to his main measure by all kinds
of promises passed, the supremacy of the Northwest would be certain.

But the weakness of popular government is the fact that public men are
seldom strong enough to deny themselves the opportunity of an appeal to
the people on a side issue, if such appeal promises political victory.
The day that Douglas introduced his bill, there appeared in the New
York papers, _The Appeal of the Independent Democrats_, signed by
Senators Chase and Sumner and the Free-Soil members of the House. It was
an able protest against the repeal of the Missouri Compromise, and a
denunciation of the "unscrupulous politician" who made this surrender of
national and free States rights in order to secure for himself the
coveted Presidency. The essential purpose of the Douglas legislation,
the rapid upbuilding of the Northwest and the blocking of the Davis
plans for a Pacific railroad, were entirely overlooked. A wave of
excitement swept over the East and the New England colonies of the
Northwest. Petitions poured into Congress, meetings were held to
denounce Douglas as a second Benedict Arnold, and he was burned in
effigy by thousands who never took the trouble to read the
Kansas-Nebraska Bill or seriously contemplated its effects. In Congress
Chase, Sumner, Seward, and even moderates like Edward Everett denounced
the ambitious politician from Illinois who had dared to "sell the
birthright of the free States for a mess of pottage." It was a revival
of the sectional hatred, as well as of the fears of the aggressive
planters who had enticed Douglas to go one step farther than he had

Though the South had begun to fear the consequences of popular
sovereignty and to see that Douglas was only making the more certain the
power of his group of States, its spokesmen felt compelled to support
him in a fight against abolitionists and anti-slavery agitators.
Alexander Stephens, an able Whig leader of Georgia, and most other
members of that party in the South, gave Douglas hearty support. The
struggle developed into a fight between the East and the South. A great
many of the followers of Douglas were won away from the original program
when it seemed a mere question of slavery extension, and the Democrats
of the Northwest divided sharply. After four months of angry debate and
unprecedented log-rolling the bill became law, and the President
promptly organized Kansas and Nebraska as Territories. Members of
Congress went home after the adjournment to face their constituents, and
a most exciting campaign followed. In Wisconsin and Michigan a new party
was organized. Its appeal was to the fundamental American doctrines that
all men are equal and that no great interests should rule the country.
It received immediate support in the two States mentioned, and in all
the counties of the Northwest where the New England influence was
predominant, in northern Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois. Naturally the
remnants of the old party organizations, the Whigs and the Free-Soilers,
lent enthusiastic support.

Chase and Sumner had called into being a new idealist movement
resembling that which had overwhelmed the Federalists in 1800, and a
group of new leaders, soon to become famous, emerged. In addition to the
well-known names already mentioned, there now appeared the kindly,
shrewd Abraham Lincoln, of Kentucky and Illinois; J. W. Grimes arose in
Iowa to threaten a Democratic machine which had never known defeat;
Zachary Chandler, of Michigan, was making ready the stroke which was to
unhorse the great and popular Cass; and Benjamin F. Wade, of Ohio,
joined Chase and Giddings, thus making up the trio which was to rule
that State for years to come. The young and vigorous Republican party of
the Northwest, guided by this company of ambitious "new" politicians,
readily effected the union of East and Northwest which Adams and Clay
had long striven in vain to perfect. The work of Chase, Seward, Lincoln,
and Sumner of these years paralleled that of Calhoun, Jackson, and
Benton in 1828; and as a result the Democrats lost their hold on the
legislatures of nearly all the States above the Ohio and the Missouri
Rivers, and their overwhelming majority in the Federal House of
Representatives disappeared as if overnight.

While the new Republican party, almost wholly sectional in its origin
and perhaps in its purposes, was winning leadership in the country, the
more conservative Whigs of the East sought to affiliate with a small
organization of nativists who called themselves Americans and whose
slogan was "America for Americans." Foreigners should be barred from
citizenship and Catholics should be ostracized. In the South most
followers of Clay and in the East many admirers of Webster avoided a
complete surrender to the Democrats by stopping in this halfway house.
The "Know-Nothings," as the party was called in derision of their
failure to answer questions about their platform, gained so many
followers from the dissatisfied elements of the older parties that in
1855 it seemed likely they would sweep the country. In Virginia they
made their most spectacular campaign. Henry A. Wise, a Whig who had
gone into the Democratic party with Stephens, was their greatest
opponent, and in the gubernatorial campaign of 1855 he completely
discomfited them; in Georgia they likewise lost their contest. The South
was accepting the Democratic leadership and becoming solid, as Calhoun
had prayed that it might become. In the East, Seward and Weed persuaded
most of the Whigs to unite with the Republicans, and when the first
national convention of the Americans met in 1856, it was clear that its
leaders could not hold the Southern and Eastern wings together on the
slavery question. The anti-slavery Americans bolted, and the remnant
which remained nominated ex-President Fillmore, who in the succeeding
election received a majority in only one State, Maryland, though his
popular vote was nearly a million. The parties of the future were
plainly the Democratic, Southern, pro-slavery, and well organized, and
the Republican, Northern, we may now say, anti-slavery, and also well

Meanwhile the frontiersmen from Iowa and Missouri were trying to work
out the principle of popular sovereignty in Kansas, and their Governor,
Andrew Reeder, was doing what he could to assist them. Anti-slavery aid
societies in the East sent resolute men to Kansas to vote and save the
Territory from slavery, and pro-slavery lodges in Missouri went across
the border to vote against and perhaps to shoot Free-State men who
disputed the right of the South to plant and to maintain slavery there.
Under these circumstances the first election for members of the
territorial legislature was a farce. Yet Reeder felt obliged to let the
new assembly go on with its work of making easy the immigration of
masters with their "property"; when he went East a little later he took
occasion to protest in a public address against the intrusion of
Missouri voters. He was regretfully removed from office, though he
returned to Kansas to coöperate with Charles Robinson, a Californian of
political experience, in the organization of the Free-State party, which
refused to recognize the territorial legislature and which met in
voluntary convention at Topeka in the autumn of 1855 and drew a state
constitution. In this document slavery was outlawed. Following the
example of California, representatives of the new government asked for
prompt admission to the Union.

The Southerners had never recognized California as properly within the
Union, and the pro-Southern party in Kansas made open war upon the
Topeka party in December. Lawrence, the anti-slavery headquarters, was
besieged, but the new governor managed to compromise so as to prevent
bloodshed, and the two governments of Kansas continued to exist. The
Federal Congress was compelled to decide which of the questionable
governments should be recognized as lawful. Since the Senate was
Democratic and pro-Southern, and the House Republican and pro-Northern,
a decision was impossible. The Topeka constitution was supported by the
House, and even the fair and reasonable bill of the Senate offered by
Toombs in 1856 was rejected. This called for a submission of both
parties in Kansas to an election safeguarded against unlawful
interference from any source. It seemed that Seward, Chase, and their
friends did not desire a settlement before the election. And Sumner's
speech on the "Crime of Kansas" was a challenge to war. He compared
Douglas to "the noisome squat and nameless animal whose tongue switched
a perpetual stench," and Senator Butler, of South Carolina, a leader of
the highest character, was a man who could not open his mouth but to

The war of the sections was now renewed in the most bitter form, as was
shown when Preston Brooks, a kinsman of Butler, assaulted Sumner a day
or two after the speech, resigned his seat in the House as
Representative from South Carolina, and was immediately reëlected.
Sumner retired from the Senate, a hero in all New England, and
Massachusetts ostentatiously refused to fill the vacant seat during the
next three years, thus constantly reminding her people of Sumner's
vituperation and the South Carolina assault.

When the Democrats met in their national convention in Cincinnati in
June, the struggle in Kansas still went on, and the excitement of the
Sumner-Brooks affair had not subsided. All elements of the South were
represented, and the American party showed no signs of being able to
carry a single Southern State. The convention accepted Douglas's popular
sovereignty as its platform, but nominated Buchanan as its candidate. He
was "available" because he had been out of the country for four years
and had said nothing on the Kansas quarrel. John C. Breckinridge, of
Kentucky, was nominated for the Vice-Presidency in the hope of winning
Tennessee and Kentucky, which had not voted for a Democratic candidate
since Jackson.

The Republicans used the "Crime of Kansas" as politicians always use
such opportunities, and they made an appeal to the Revolutionary
tradition by calling their convention on the anniversary of the battle
of Bunker Hill, June 17. They had not a _bona fide_ delegation from any
Southern State. But the Declaration of Independence, overlooked by both
parties for many years, was made a part of the platform. The Pacific
railway was indorsed and internal improvements at federal expense were
again recommended to the country. John C. Frémont, son-in-law of Benton
and an explorer of national fame, was nominated for the Presidency. The
campaign had already been waging since the introduction of the
Kansas-Nebraska Bill. It now became intense. Douglas gave Buchanan his
loyal support, and the great Southern planters united with New York
merchants and New England conservatives to make the Democratic ticket
successful. Even Edward Everett and Rufus Choate made public
announcement of their conversion to Democracy. Large sums of money were
sent to Pennsylvania to influence the vote. Southern governors in a
conference at Raleigh proposed secession if the Democrats failed, and
Eastern radicals urged the break-up of the Union if the slave power
continued in control.

The result was a victory for the conservatives, or "reactionaries," as
we should perhaps say. The solid South voted for Buchanan; and
Pennsylvania, Indiana, Illinois, and California were found in the same
column. Frémont received the support of a solid East and all the
Northwest except the States just mentioned. The fear of radicalism and
the distrust of men of great wealth everywhere had defeated the young
Republicans; the returns showed that the Democrats had polled 200,000
more votes than in 1852, and there was no reason to believe that the
874,000 which had been cast for Fillmore would not in the end be given
to the conservative Democrats in preference to the sectional
Republicans. There was no chance for the enthusiastic followers of
Seward and Chase unless the majority party could be broken into
factions, and this a wise and able Democratic leadership would avoid.

Strangely Buchanan formed his Cabinet without consulting Douglas, so far
as can now be ascertained. No friend of his was appointed to high
office, yet the support of the Northwest was the one condition of
continued success. In the foreign policy the new Administration made no
change. A part of northern Mexico and all of Cuba were still coveted
and, till the outbreak of the Civil War, efforts were made to obtain
both. Howell Cobb, of Georgia, was the master spirit of the Cabinet, and
Jefferson Davis was the Administration leader in the Senate.

The Supreme Court, composed of seven pro-Southern members as against two
anti-slavery men, undertook to give a _coup de grace_ to the quarrel
about slavery in the Territories. The Missouri Compromise had never been
passed upon by the court. Now a case came before the august tribunal
which gave opportunity for the judges to say whether slavery could be
prohibited by federal authority in the public domain. Dred Scott, a
slave belonging to a Missouri master, had been carried into Minnesota
and there held in bondage. He sued for his freedom on the ground that
slavery was unlawful in free territory, under the Compromise. The case
was before the court nearly a year before the judges gave out their
opinion that Scott was not a citizen of the United States, and that,
therefore, he could not sue in the federal courts. The case was
dismissed. But the judges granted a rehearing of the case, and in March,
1857, hoping to assist the country to a peaceful solution of the slavery
problem, gave out a so-called _dictum_, which it had been the custom of
the court occasionally to submit to the public.[9] In this document the
judges said that the negro was property, and that as such the Federal
Government must protect it in the Territories. This was the Calhoun
doctrine, and the South rejoiced immoderately; the Republicans now began
to realize that the courts were in alliance with the slave-power, and
they were forced to attack the most sacred political institution in the

[Footnote 9: Chief Justice Marshall had set the example for this in his
Marbury _vs._ Madison _dictum_.]

Both parties turned to Kansas to see what could be won there. During the
spring of 1856, when Sumner and Brooks were manifesting the spirit of
the members of Congress, the Southern and Northern groups in Kansas
carried their warfare to similar extremes. Lawrence was destroyed by the
pro-slavery men; the anti-slavery men returned the stroke in the
massacres on Pottawatomie Creek. John Brown, a fanatical New England
emigrant, imagined himself to be commissioned of Heaven to kill all the
pro-slavery people who fell into his hands, and he did a bloody work
which under other conditions would have been counted as murder and
denounced everywhere. But in the autumn of 1856 wealthy and benevolent
men in the North applauded him, gave him money, and held meetings in his

Into a Kansas frenzied with the work of Brown on the one side and that
of the "border ruffians," as the Missourians were called, on the other,
the President sent Robert J. Walker as governor, commissioned to solve
the insoluble problem. So great was the faith of the country in Walker
that he was hailed as the next President of the United States by
fair-minded men and important newspapers. Walker called an election for
a constitutional convention. Again the Missourians participated, and the
Lecompton constitution was the result. The Free-State men refused to
recognize the convention unless the new constitution should be submitted
to a fair vote. This the convention refused to do, and the governor
appealed to the President to compel submission. This was denied, and
Walker resigned. The Lecompton, pro-slavery constitution of Kansas was
submitted to the first Congress of Buchanan in December, 1857, and the
Administration urged its adoption. Walker openly condemned Buchanan for
deserting him, and he declared the Lecompton constitution to be a fraud.
Yet the leaders of the South, resentful and angry, supported it, and the
majority of the Senate was on the same side. The judges of the Supreme
Court were known to favor it. The Republicans urged the adoption of the
Topeka constitution of 1855, and the majority of the people seemed to be
of the same view. What was the way out of the dangerous _impasse_?


Most interesting and trustworthy accounts of subjects discussed in the
chapter are: T. C. Smith's _Parties and Slavery_, in _American Nation_
series; F. Bancroft's _The Life of William H. Seward_ (1900); Allen
Johnson's _The Life of Stephen A. Douglas_ (1908); O. G. Villard's _John
Brown; a Biography_ (1910); L. D. Scisco's _Political Nativism in New
York_ (1901); William Salter's _Life of James W. Grimes_ (1876); George
W. Julian's _Life of Joshua R. Giddings_ (1892). Rhodes, McMaster, and
Schouler treat the period critically. Some special studies of importance
are P. O. Ray's _Repeal of the Missouri Compromise_ (1909); Allen
Johnson's _Genesis of Popular Sovereignty_ (_Iowa Journal of History and
Politics_, _III_); F. H. Hodder's _Douglas and the Kansas-Nebraska Act_
(_Wisconsin Historical Society Proceedings_, 1912); and E. S. Corwin's
_The Dred Scott Decision_ (_American Historical Review_, _XVII_).

Some of the most instructive contemporary narratives will be found in M.
W. Cluskey's _Political Text Book_ (1857), and _Speeches, Messages, and
other Writings of A. G. Brown_ (1859); H. Wilson's _Rise and Fall of the
Slave Power_ (1872-77); Horace Greeley's _The American Conflict_ (1864);
Mrs. Jefferson Davis's _Jefferson Davis; a Memoir_ (1890); J. M. Cutts's
_Constitutional and Party Questions_ (1866); S. J. May's _Recollections
of the Anti-Slavery Conflict_ (1869); _Works of Charles Sumner_
(1874-83), and many other works of a similar character.

William McDonald's _Select Documents_ gives the most important sources
for this whole period. But the _Congressional Globe_, _U.S. Documents,
House Reports_, 34th Cong., 1st Sess., vol. _II_, must be studied in
order to get the spirit of the times.

                                  CHAPTER XIII

                                ABRAHAM LINCOLN

The passage of the Kansas-Nebraska Bill had greatly angered a majority
of the people of the North. The sudden rise of the Republican party in
protest against it, and the promise of Northern control of the Federal
Government, heartened them to the great struggle of 1856. But the
failure to win the populous States of Pennsylvania, Indiana, and
Illinois, and the solid front of the South, the compact pro-Southern
Senate, and the moral effect of the Dred Scott decision discouraged
them. Moreover, the Republican victories of 1854-55 proved misleading,
for in 1856 and 1858 the party failed to win a majority in the House of
Representatives. All that the ardent protestants and idealists could do
was to block extreme measures in Congress and enact laws in the
Republican States to harass the "enemy." Seward yielded the struggle to
the extent of indorsing popular sovereignty, which did indeed promise
more than any other line of procedure. Greeley, the enemy of Seward but
the arch-enemy of the South, actually proposed Douglas, the "squire of
slavery," for the Presidency in 1860. Chase seemed to be losing ground
in Ohio, where he had never had a majority on his own account. Business,
as we have already seen, had made peace with the South, and conservative
leaders of the East regarded slave-owners as in the same class morally
with bankers and railway directors.[10] The federal law against the
African slave trade could not be enforced. More than a hundred ships
sailed unmolested each year from New York Harbor to the African Coast to
bring back naked negroes for the cotton planters.

[Footnote 10: See Charles Francis Adams's letter to William Lloyd
Garrison in _The Liberator_, January 27, 1857.]

The outlook was so dark that New England leaders returned regretfully to
the proposition of John Quincy Adams of 1843, and recommended Northern
nullification and secession. Massachusetts had passed an act in 1855
which inflicted a penalty of five years of imprisonment upon any man who
aided in the enforcement of the Fugitive Slave Law of the United States.
The Supreme Court of Wisconsin had declared the same law
unconstitutional in 1854; in 1857 the legislature indorsed this view,
and in 1859 it claimed the right of immediate secession in case the
State was overruled by the Federal Supreme Court, or in case any attempt
should be made to enforce the obnoxious act by the General Government.
Nearly every other Northern State passed personal liberty laws which
were designed to prevent the enforcement of the Fugitive Slave Act, and
their constitutional justification was found in the supremacy of the
States and bolstered by the opinion of Judge Story, delivered in
1842,[11] which said that no private citizen need obey an
unconstitutional law, state or national, but he takes the risk of having
the courts decide it constitutional and of being punished if he acts on
his own judgment before the proper court has adjudged the act

[Footnote 11: 16 Peters' Reports of the Supreme Court, p. 536.]

It was not unnatural, then, that Charles Sumner should indorse the
abolitionist campaign against the Union, or that Benjamin F. Wade should
eulogize the Wisconsin threats to secede. Richard H. Dana, of Boston,
said that men who had called him a traitor a few years before now
stopped him on the street to talk treason. N. P. Banks, the Speaker of
the House of Representatives, said in Maine: "I am not one of the class
who cry for the perpetuation of the Union." The Worcester convention of
January 15, 1857, did actually and by big majorities pass resolutions
calling for a dissolution of the Federal Government, and its call for a
convention of all the free States, looking to the same end, was signed
by seven hundred men of all walks of life; many of them were men of
eminence. The political abolitionists and the anti-slavery men of
pronounced views were on the point of going over to the Garrison party,
which had always proclaimed that the Union was a "league with hell," and
so strong was the campaign against the Union that Governor Wise, of
Virginia, and others recommended a war upon New England in order to
bring the abolitionists to subjection.

But the darkest hour comes just before dawn. When Buchanan recommended
in the message of December, 1857, the admission of Kansas under the
Lecompton constitution, Senator Douglas, to the bewilderment of
thousands, openly denounced the President, and in the most effective
speech of his life led a secession of the Northwestern Democrats from
the dominant Southern party. He showed that the application of his
popular sovereignty doctrine in Kansas would solve the problem of
slavery in the Territories, and that the Administration was violating
the platform on which it held office in espousing the cause of the
pro-slavery men. It was a remarkable situation. In 1854 Douglas had
defeated Davis and Pierce in their far-reaching plans for the
development of the Southwest; Chase and his allies had defeated Douglas
in his counter-scheme for the growth of the Northwest in 1854-55; and
now Douglas broke the solidarity of the Democratic party and gave hope
and courage to the North, where the idea of secession was fast winning
the minds of leading men. If Douglas joined the Republicans, the
overthrow of the South was assured; if he became an independent
candidate for the Presidency, the Republicans were made certain of an
easy victory. It was this that prompted Greeley to indorse Douglas in
1857, and caused Seward to say a good word for his rival and opponent.

Buchanan read Douglas out of the party. Jefferson Davis denounced him as
worse than a demagogue. Judges of the Supreme Court expressed their
contempt for "the ambitious perpetual candidate." No settlement of the
Kansas question was possible under these circumstances. Douglas returned
to Illinois in the summer of 1858 to open his campaign for reëlection to
the Senate. He had never been so popular before. Chicagoans who had
denounced and spurned him as a traitor to his country in 1854 now gave
him the greatest ovation that city had ever given to any one. Big
business men, railroad builders, and laboring men hastened to give him
assurance of their favor. Even partisan opponents went over to the "new"
Douglas. In fact, the people saw that his popular sovereignty idea had
been misunderstood. It was already working out Northwestern or
Free-State control of the Territories, and the fear of losing the
Territories had been the motive for following Chase and Sumner in 1854.

But the Republicans of the Northwest had been planning to make an end of
the "Little Giant," the man who was the most feared of all the public
leaders of the time. Abraham Lincoln was to be his successor in the
Senate. Norman B. Judd, Joseph Medill, and John Wentworth were the
astute advisers of the new party in their section. Seward, Weed, and
even John J. Crittenden, the popular successor of Henry Clay in the
United States Senate, advised the Illinois Republicans not to oppose
Douglas, since Douglas was already doing the Democrats more mischief
than any new Republican Senator could hope to do. The Eastern leaders
were concerned about the campaign of 1860, and naturally they cultivated
the differences of their opponents.

Lincoln was also making plans for 1860, and a defeat of Douglas in his
own State would be a political event of the first magnitude. And there
was much promise of success. Had they not elected Lyman Trumbull in 1855
in spite of all the "great man" could do? Moreover, the Administration
had withdrawn all patronage from Douglas, and postmasters' heads were
falling fast in Illinois. Indeed, Buchanan was just then putting up
anti-Douglas tickets in many of the counties, in the expectation of
electing a legislature hostile to Douglas if not friendly to the
Washington authorities. Was there ever a better chance for the new group
of leaders? Contrary to Eastern advice they nominated Lincoln as the
opponent of Douglas, and that shrewd man and able logician challenged
the Senator to a joint debate, and the most important political
discussion in our history followed.

Lincoln had declared in a recent speech that "a house divided against
itself could not stand," and the United States he likened to the divided
house. Douglas seized upon this to show the country what a radical
abolitionist Lincoln was, for was it not a disruption of the Union of
which he spoke so cogently, and which the abolitionists were just now
urging? Nothing was more unpopular in the Northwest than disunion. All
the papers of the country now printed what Lincoln had said, and with
Douglas's disparaging comment. The business interests of the East
shuddered at the Lincoln parable.

But Lincoln took occasion at Freeport to make Douglas even more
unpopular in the South than he already was, by asking him if he did not
support the Dred Scott decision; also if he still adhered to the popular
sovereignty doctrine as a means of settling the slavery problem in the
Territories. Douglas answered in the affirmative to both queries.
Whereupon Lincoln showed that if the Dred Scott decision held, Congress
must protect slavery in all the Territories and if the popular
sovereignty idea prevailed, the squatters of any Territory might by
popular vote prohibit slavery in any Territory. Hence, according to
Douglas, slavery could be lawfully maintained and lawfully abolished at
the same time and place. Douglas recognized his predicament; but he
replied that, in spite of the court's decision, the settlers of a new
Territory might by "unfriendly" local legislation make slavery
impossible. When the papers of the country published this lame reply,
Southern men everywhere denounced in unmeasured terms "the demagogue who
promised one thing in Congress and another in Illinois." The
Lincoln-Douglas campaign continued all the autumn, and the country
became acquainted with the obscure lawyer who had persisted in his
purpose to run against Douglas contrary to the counsels of the leaders
of his party. However, Douglas was reëlected to the Senate, to the great
chagrin of both Lincoln and the President.

After the excitement following the break of Douglas with his party, the
Republican newspapers, which had urged Douglas as their candidate for
1860, returned to their partisan attitude. To most people it seemed
clear that Seward should be the Republican candidate in the next
campaign, and Seward was also convinced that his own nomination was
necessary and inevitable. The conservative wing of the party in the
East, and especially New England, was devoted to him. As time went on
the prize seemed more and more certain, though there were other
competitors in the field. Simon Cameron, of Pennsylvania, Chase, of
Ohio, Lincoln, of Illinois, and Edward Bates, of Missouri, were
"favorite sons." For the Democrats the outlook was anything but
cheering. The "regulars" could not speak of Douglas but with
imprecations. Although Douglas controlled absolutely all the Democratic
organizations in eight Northwestern States, if we include Missouri, a
most strenuous campaign was waged from Washington against him in the
hope of getting control of the general committee of the next convention.
John Slidell, of Louisiana, and August Belmont, agent of the
Rothschilds, in New York, guided the maneuvers. In December, 1859, when
Douglas entered upon his new term with an air of triumph, the Senate
majority, led by Jefferson Davis, promptly removed him from the
chairmanship of the Committee on Territories, which was the signal for
the opening of the fierce political war that preceded the assembling of
the Democratic Convention in Charleston.

Meanwhile John Brown, influenced by the political currents then running
in favor of the North, led a small band of men into western Virginia.
The object was to start a slave insurrection and in the end set free all
the negroes of the South. Brown received or was promised $25,000 and was
supported by men of the first respectability. On October 16, 1859, Brown
seized the United States Arsenal at Harper's Ferry and called upon the
slaves to rise against their masters. In the fighting which ensued
Colonel Washington, a grand-nephew of General Washington, was wounded;
but few took notice of names in that first onset of the Civil War or
thought of the common history of the sections. Governor Wise, of
Virginia, hastened the militia to the scene, and Captain Robert E. Lee
led a small force of United States troops to the relief of the
endangered community. Brown failed in his efforts to arouse the negroes,
who were not the restless and resentful race they were thought to be. He
was soon surrounded and captured. A few people were killed, but the
institution of slavery was not touched.

But the noise of the attack was heard around the world. In the North men
of the highest standing proclaimed Brown a hero. At the time of his
execution in December so thoughtful a man as Emerson compared Brown's
gallows to the cross of Jesus of Nazareth. For a time the social
conscience of the East, at least, sensed this attack as a blow against
the common _Erbfeind_, as the Germans say of the French. It was the
"arrogant South" that had been struck. But when the Congressional
investigation was held, Republican leaders and religious organizations
everywhere insisted that they had never known the man, though there was
a widespread feeling that it would be wise for the Governor of Virginia
not to visit the death penalty upon the "deluded" prisoner.

Governor Wise was not the man to forgive an assault on the Old Dominion,
and he never thought of granting a pardon. He urged Virginia to
reorganize her militia, and he filled the state armory with some of the
weapons which were used with fatal effect at First Bull Run. Other
Southern States followed the example of Virginia and laid in supplies
for a conflict which many thought inevitable. Nor was it without
significance that new military companies and regiments were organized
and drilled in many parts of the North during the year 1860.

After months of angry and useless debates in Washington, the leaders of
the Democratic party gathered in Charleston in April, 1860, to nominate
their candidates for the Presidency and Vice-Presidency. No other town
in the United States was more unfriendly to the cause of the leading
candidate, Douglas. As the delegates gathered, it was seen that every
delegation from every Northwestern State was instructed to vote as a
unit for Douglas, and it became evident that a safe majority would
insist on his nomination. The enthusiasm of the followers of the "Little
Giant" surpassed all similar demonstrations at previous conventions. On
the other hand, the committee on resolutions was opposed to Douglas, and
by a vote of 17 to 16 it reported a platform which was simply a
restatement of the Dred Scott decision, adding only that the Federal
Government was bound by the Constitution to protect slavery in the
Territories. When this report was read in the convention the Douglas
majority rejected it, and accepted the minority report, which was the
"popular sovereignty" of Douglas and the platform of 1856, for which all
the South had stood in the campaign of that year. The convention was
deadlocked, for the South could defeat Douglas for the nomination under
the two-thirds rule, and Douglas could prevent the adoption of any
Southern program or the nomination of any candidate other than himself.
On Sunday, April 30, the clergy and the congregations of the city prayed
as never before for a peaceable solution of the problem before the
country, and every one seemed to recognize the gravity of the situation.
On Monday evening, William L. Yancey, "the fire-eater" of Alabama, after
a most remarkable speech, broke the deadlock by leading a bolt of
practically all the lower Southern States. The Tammany Hall delegation
of New York followed. The bolters held a meeting in another hall and
called a convention of their element of the party in Richmond in June.
The Douglas majority likewise adjourned a day or two later to meet in
Baltimore at the same time.

The historic Jacksonian party had broken into factions. Each faction
nominated a candidate. The Southerners, supported by the Buchanan
Administration, named John C. Breckinridge, a moderate, in the vain hope
of winning some Northern States; the Douglas men offered, of course,
their favorite, and insisted that theirs was the only true Union ticket.
A third convention was called to meet in Baltimore, and its nominees
were John Bell, of Tennessee, and Edward Everett, of Massachusetts. This
was the remnant of the Know-Nothings of 1856. They asked for the
maintenance of the Union as it was; but in the ensuing election they
polled three hundred thousand fewer votes than Fillmore had received in

The Republicans met in Chicago about the middle of May, the advantage of
local sentiment being in Lincoln's favor. The Seward men and their
"rooters" came in trainloads from New York and Boston, and both in
Chicago and Charleston a plentiful supply of whiskey had its share in
the manufacture of enthusiasm. Cameron was the stumbling-block of the
conservative Eastern Republicans, and he was expected to command his
price. Horace Greeley, cast out of the Republican camp by the Seward men
in New York, came as a delegate from Oregon, and he was busy from morn
till night trying to defeat Seward. Chase, Lincoln, and Bates, though
they were not in the convention, were doing what they could to defeat
the great New York leader on the ground that he could not possibly carry
Indiana and Illinois. It was more than a friendly rivalry.

In drafting the platform no reference was to be made to the idealistic
Declaration of Independence, so popular in 1856; but the resolute threat
of a bolt, by Joshua R. Giddings, caused a reconsideration and the
adoption of the brief reference which one reads in the historic
document. All raids into States or Territories were duly denounced, and
slavery itself was guaranteed in all its rights. The Pacific railroad
scheme of Douglas was again indorsed, and the old land policy of the
West found expression in the free homestead plank. The tariff ideas of
Clay appeared in a clause which promised protection to American
industry, better wages to American labor, and higher prices for farm
products. One sees here the genius of political management, not the fire
of reformers, and if the Southerners had kept cool they could have read
between the lines of this declaration all the guarantees that they
required, save alone on the subject of slavery in the new Territories,
which the Republicans could not possibly yield and hold their followers
together. It was an alliance of the East and the Northwest, arranged by
Seward in much the same way that Calhoun arranged the combination of
1828 which raised Jackson to the Presidency.

To the surprise of the country and especially of the East, Cameron,
Greeley, and Bates proved able to defeat Seward, and Lincoln was
nominated. Many people of the East had never heard of the successful
candidate till they read in the papers that he had won. Lincoln was
moderate in temper and conciliatory in tone, like the platform, but he
was a sincere democrat, one who was in mind and thought one of the
people. The great men of the party who had borne the burden and heat of
the day felt outraged. Sumner never forgave Lincoln for his lack of
culture, and for a time it seemed that Seward would not give his humble
rival the support necessary to success. "The rail-splitter" of Illinois
was ridiculed in the older Republican States as no other presidential
candidate had been since "Old Hickory" offered himself as against the
seasoned statesmanship of John Quincy Adams. The gentry of the East were
in a worse plight than were the Southern statesmen of 1828, for Lincoln
was more of a democrat than Jackson had been.

But if certain classes of the East accepted mournfully the candidate of
their party, the plain people everywhere, farmers, mechanics,
shopkeepers, and the smaller industrial interests, rejoiced that one of
their own had been selected. While it is not likely that this caused
many changes from one party to another, it did tend to bring out the
vote and prevent the election from going to the House. Professional
abolitionists could not honestly support the platform of the
Republicans, but anti-slavery men, old-line Whigs, half of the former
Know-Nothing party, and all of those who had so long feared or hated the
South could cheerfully vote for Lincoln. In the Northwest it was an
evenly matched contest. Douglas was only a little less popular than his
great rival, the cause of his final defeat being the decision of the
German element to cast in their lot with the Republicans. Carl Schurz,
one of the best men who ever took part in American public life, and a
radical of the radicals, exercised a decisive influence and turned the
tide in Illinois and Iowa, where a few thousand votes lost would have
defeated Lincoln. Though the enthusiasm of the Republicans was not so
great as it had been in 1856, the people of the East and the Northwest
did unite against the South, as planned in the Chicago platform, which
so well represented the interests of the combination.

The South gave every evidence that secession would follow the election
of Lincoln, and when the Maine campaign indicated that Lincoln would
surely be chosen, Douglas gave up his canvass in the Northwest and went
South in the hope of saving the Union by urging the leaders there that
secession would mean war. In Virginia, North Carolina, and Alabama he
foretold plainly the awful consequences of secession. But the lower
South paid little heed; their leaders, Rhett and Yancey, were ready to
take the first steps to disrupt the Union upon the receipt of news that
the Democrats had lost the election. To them Lincoln was not only a
democrat who believed in the equality of men before the law; he was
also a "black Republican," the head of a sectional party whose platform
bespoke sectional interests and the isolation of the South.

[Illustration: The Presidential Election of 1860 California & Oregon]

[Illustration: The Presidential Election of 1860]

In the end Lincoln received a popular vote slightly greater than that of
Buchanan in 1856, and the electoral vote of every State from Maine to
Iowa and Minnesota. Douglas received a larger vote than Frémont had
received, but only twelve electoral votes. It was plain that the people
of the North were by no means unanimous, and that Lincoln would have
great difficulty in carrying out any severely anti-Southern measures,
especially as the Republicans had failed to carry a majority of the
congressional districts. Thus the blunders of Douglas and Chase in 1854
had started the dogs of sectional warfare, and now a solid North
confronted a solid South, with only two or three undecided buffer
States, like Maryland and Missouri, between them.

Abraham Lincoln, born in Kentucky of Virginia parentage, married to a
Southern woman, accustomed from boyhood to the narrow circumstances of
the poor, and still unused to the ways of the great, was called to the
American Presidency. He was not brusque and warlike as Jackson had been;
he was a kindly philosopher, a free-thinker in religion at the head of
an orthodox people, or peoples. A shrewd judge of human character and
the real friend of the poor and the dependent, Lincoln, like his
aristocratic prototype, Thomas Jefferson, believed implicitly in the
common man. He was ready to submit anything he proposed to a vote of the
mass of lowly people, who knew little of state affairs and who never
expected to be seen or heard in Washington. People who had preached
democracy to Europe for nearly a century had now the opportunity of
submitting to democracy. It was the severest test to which the Federal
Government had ever been subjected.


Rear Admiral Chadwick's _Causes of the Civil War_, in the _American
Nation_ series (1906); Nicolay and Hay's _Abraham Lincoln: A History_
(1890); Ida M. Tarbell's _The Life of Abraham Lincoln_ (1900); O. G.
Villard's _John Brown; A Biography_ (1910); G. T. Curtis's _The Life of
James Buchanan_ (1883); A. H. Stephen's _War between the States_
(1868-70); Jefferson Davis's _Rise and Fall of the Confederate
Government_ (1881); Murat Halstead's _Conventions of 1860_; G. Koerner's
_Memoirs_; Carl Schurz's _Reminiscences_; James A. Pike's _First Blows
of the Civil War_ (1879); George W. Julian's _Political Recollections_
(1884); and Henry S. Foote's _Casket of Reminiscences_ (1874), may be
added to the works already mentioned. E. D. Fite's _The Campaign of
1860_ (1911) is valuable, although Rhode's account of the campaign
equals Fite's; and E. Stanwood's _A History of the Presidency_ (1898)
gives the platforms and the votes of the parties for each national

_The Tribune Almanac_ gives the votes by counties, while Richardson's
_Messages and Papers of the Presidents_, already named in earlier notes,
and the _Statutes at Large of the United States_ supply the texts of
important papers, laws, and treaties. Richard Peters's _Reports of Cases
Argued in the Supreme Court_ and B. C. Howard's continuation of this
series supply the decisions of the Federal Supreme Court. U. B.
Phillips's _Correspondence of Toombs, Stephens, and Cobb_, in the
_Reports of the American Historical Association_ (1911), is a valuable
contribution to the sources of the period.

Special studies of importance are: W. E. B. DuBois's _Suppression of the
African Slave Trade_ (1896); M. G. McDougall's _Fugitive Slaves_ (1891),
J. C. Hurd's _Law of Freedom and Bondage_ (1858); Edward McPherson's
_Political History of the United States_ (1865); John H. Latané's
_Diplomacy of the United States in Regard to Cuba_, in _American
Historical Association Reports_ (1907); J. M. Callahan's _Evolution of
Seward's Mexican Policy_ (1909); Phillips's _Life of Robert Toombs_
(1914); and H. White's _Life of Lyman Trumbull_ (1913). Of peculiar
value for the spirit of the times are: Mrs. Roger A. Pryor's
_Reminiscences of Peace and War_ (1905); Mrs. James Chesnut's _A Diary
from Dixie_ (1905); and William H. Russell's _My Diary North and South_

                                 CHAPTER XIV

                              THE APPEAL TO ARMS

Though the South had voted as a unit for Buchanan in 1856 and her
leaders had long acted in concert on important matters, the election of
Lincoln by a "solid" North was regarded by most owners of slaves as a
revolutionary act; and the Southern reply to the challenge was
secession. The idea of secession was familiar in 1860. In 1794 New
England leaders in Congress had discussed such a remedy when it seemed
certain that the Southerners would gain permanent control of the
national machinery, and Westerners contemplated the same remedy for ills
they could not otherwise cure during the period of 1793 to 1801. Rather
than submit to the burdensome embargo and the more burdensome second war
with England, most New England men of property seem to have preferred
the dissolution of a union which was formed for commercial purposes; and
we have seen how Webster urged resistance to the national tariff in 1820
even to the point of advising secession. The rightful means of local
self-defense was a break-up of the confederacy, until in 1830 Jackson,
speaking for the West, and Webster, speaking for the rising industrial
group of the Northeast, announced that the Union was indissoluble and
that an attempt to sever it would be accounted treason. A sense of
nationality had come into existence, and a permanent, "sacred" union of
all the States was the corollary of that belief.

Still, when the South, with its resolute program of expansion and the
vigorous national control which characterized the Democratic
Administrations from Polk to Buchanan, made slavery a cardinal tenet of
its faith, legislatures and courts of the East refused to regard either
the Constitution or the federal law as paramount and abiding. Secession
was a common word among the constituents of New England Senators after
1840, and even Northwestern States threatened disruption of the Union as
late as 1859 if the national policy should continue to run counter to
their interests. There was, however, a strong undercurrent of devotion
to the idea of nationality in both North and South[12] in 1860, and when
South Carolina proceeded with her long-contemplated scheme of secession
early in November of that year, Jefferson Davis, who had formerly talked
freely of that "last remedy" of minority interests, advised against the
movement; and everywhere North and South men of great wealth, as well as
the poorer people, who must always bear the heaviest burdens of war,
deprecated and warned against the application of a remedy which all
sections had at one time or another declared right and lawful. As men
came nearer to the application of their "rightful" remedy, the older and
cooler heads urged the leaders of South Carolina not to withdraw from
the national confederation. Republicans like Seward and Weed and
Lincoln exerted themselves to the utmost to dissuade the Southern
radicals; all the influence of the Bell and Everett party was cast into
the same side of the scales; and Congress, when it assembled in
December, 1860, was pressed from every possible angle to arrange some
compromise which would satisfy the angry element in the lower South.
Even Republicans of the more radical type offered to do anything, except
assent to the further expansion of slavery in the Territories, in order
to prevent the formation of a Southern Confederacy and the expected
paralysis of business.

[Footnote 12: Perhaps we may use these terms now to describe the two
great sections of the country as the Civil War approached.]

Nothing availed. South Carolina, under the leadership of Robert Barnwell
Rhett, called a state convention which met in Columbia, but adjourned to
Charleston, and on December 20 severed all connection with the National
Government and recalled her Representatives in Congress. President
Buchanan did not favor secession, and he hoped that some way might be
found to settle the difficulties which underlay the crisis. In his
message to Congress he declared that there was no right of secession,
but that there was also no authority anywhere to prevent secession. This
was at the time the view of most others in the North, perhaps in the
South, for Southerners spoke frequently of the "revolution" they were
precipitating. When the demand of South Carolina for the surrender of
Fort Sumter was presented to the President, he decided to delay action
until his successor was inaugurated. This was not irregular nor unusual,
but gave the people of the South time to decide what they would do; and
before February 1, 1861, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, and
Louisiana withdrew from the Union, though not without strenuous
resistance by large parties in all these communities, save Florida.
Early in February delegates from these States gathered in Montgomery,
Alabama, and organized a Southern Confederacy on the model of the older
Union, and made Jefferson Davis President. Alexander Stephens, who had
done more than any other Southerner to delay and defeat secession, was
elected Vice-President. The new constitution was conservative if not
reactionary in character. Slavery was definitely and specifically made a
corner-stone of the new government. The foreign slave trade was, in
deference to border state opinion, forbidden; but free trade, which had
so long been a bone of contention between the planters of the South and
the manufacturers of the East, was left to the wisdom of ordinary
legislation. In fact many of the ablest Southern leaders foresaw the
establishment of a protective system in the South. In the same spirit of
statesmanlike compromise, President Davis was careful to fill the
Cabinet and other important posts with men who represented all phases of
opinion, with former rivals and even decided opponents of the cause he
represented. So cautious and considered was this program of the new
administration that ardent secessionists declared before the fall of
Fort Sumter that a reunion with the older Federal Government was the
object. And the mild and conciliatory attitude of William H. Seward, who
was considered as a sort of acting president during the winter of
1860-61, strengthened this feeling in the South. The Southern
commissioners whom Davis sent to Washington to negotiate with the
Federal Government on the subjects of boundaries between the two
countries, the division of the public debt, and the surrender of forts
within Confederate territory were great favorites in the old national
capital. A friendly attitude toward the new South still further found
expression in the New York _Tribune_, supposed to speak for Republicans
in general, in the Albany _Journal_, Thurlow Weed's paper, and even in
the New York _Times_, Seward's organ.

In fact the people of the North preferred a permanent disruption of the
Union to a great war, the inevitable alternative. Nationalist sentiment
was strong in the North, but not strong enough to make men positive and
decided in their actions. President-elect Lincoln expressed this state
of the public mind in his inaugural, when he said that he would
faithfully execute the laws unless the people, his rightful masters,
should refuse their support, and he showed it still more clearly when he
adopted the policy of delay in determining the status of Fort Sumter
which his predecessor had so long followed. The Cabinet of Buchanan had
been undecided, that of Lincoln was for a whole month equally undecided.
Men hoped to avoid what all feared, civil war; and it is to the credit
of both sections and both cabinets that they hesitated to commit the
overt act which was to set free the "dogs of war"; and while public
opinion was thus halted at the parting of the ways, Virginia, still
thought of as the great old commonwealth and mother of statesmen, called
a peace congress of North and South. Delegates from twenty-one States
conferred together in Washington for six weeks, seeking a way out of the
difficult and perilous situation. Conservative members of Congress, John
J. Crittenden, Stephen A. Douglas, William H. Seward, and others,
labored in the same cause. It is acknowledged by all that a popular
referendum would have brought an overwhelming mandate to let the
"departing sisters go in peace," or to accept the former Southern demand
of a division of the western territory from Kansas to the Pacific along
the line of 36° 30'.

But stiff-backed Republicans like Senator Chandler, of Michigan, Charles
Sumner, and Secretary Chase were unwilling to throw away the results of
a victory constitutionally won, even to avoid a long and bloody war. And
these men brought all the influence they could command to bear upon the
President and his Cabinet during the early days of April. They contended
that every moment of delay increased the likelihood of Southern success,
and they urged that the young Republican party, which was perhaps as
dear to them as the country itself, was losing ground. At last President
Lincoln yielded, and a relief expedition was ordered to Fort Sumter on
April 6, where Major Robert Anderson and his garrison had bravely and
cautiously maintained their difficult situation in the face of an angry
Southern sentiment for nearly four months. This was recognized as a
warlike move; and Secretary Seward was so much opposed to it and, the
Southerners contended, so sacredly bound not to allow its departure,
that he interfered with the expedition, by sending orders, signed by
himself for the President, intended to thwart the move.

Under circumstances so peculiar and delicate it was of the utmost
importance that the Confederate President keep his head. The
responsibility for regaining control of Fort Sumter passed from South
Carolina to the Confederate Government during the early days of
February. Major Anderson, who held the fort with a small Federal
garrison, was a friend of Jefferson Davis, and was keenly alive to the
seriousness of his situation, and while his superiors were in doubt, he
maintained the status of things as they were when the negotiations
began. But the authorities of South Carolina forbade the sending of
fresh supplies of provisions to his men after April 6, and, as there was
but a limited amount on hand, it was only a matter of weeks before he
must evacuate, if neither the North nor the South decided what should be
done. April 15 was the day which he set for giving up his post for the
lack of sustenance. If he moved away peacefully, there would be no war,
and such was the hope of Seward and the moderates of the North, who
thought that a friendly reconstruction would be the result of continued

Jefferson Davis, who was informed daily of every move that was made in
Washington, determined to let Anderson quietly evacuate Fort Sumter,
having assurances from Seward that no supplies would be sent. In this he
was supported by the unanimous opinion of his Cabinet until on April 9,
when General P. G. T. Beauregard, who commanded the troops gathering at
Charleston, telegraphed that the Federal Government had given formal
notice that assistance would be sent to the starving garrison. Davis
still delayed, giving conditional orders to Beauregard; and Beauregard
acted in the same spirit when he sent Roger A. Pryor and three other
aides to the fort to get definite assurance on the point of Federal
surrender. But when Anderson, on the night of April 12, gave assurance
that on April 15 he would give up his post if he should not receive
contrary orders from Washington prior to that time, the four aides of
General Beauregard who had been sent to the fort gave notice to the
Confederate artillery commander, without consulting superior authority,
that the answer was not satisfactory, and the fatal shelling began. On
the next day Anderson and his men, finding the walls of the fort falling
about them, surrendered. The war had begun.

The act of South Carolina on December 20 led immediately to the
formation of the confederacy of the lower Southern States. The firing on
Fort Sumter was followed in a few days by the secession of Virginia,
Tennessee, and Arkansas, Texas having already joined the "revolution";
Maryland, Kentucky, and Missouri were prevented from joining the new
confederacy only by the prompt and extra-legal interference of President
Lincoln. The second tier of Southern States thus joined the first, and a
confederacy of some ten million people demanded the independence which
all agreed had not been forbidden in the Constitution of 1787, and began
at once the raising of armies to make good that demand. The boundaries
of the new republic were extended to the Potomac; commissioners were
sent to the European powers to sue for recognition, and hundreds of the
best officers in the United States Army resigned to seek commands under
the new flag.

The popular excitement and enthusiasm which followed these events in the
South equaled that which marked the early stages of the French
Revolution. Party lines and class distinctions disappeared. Two hundred
thousand volunteers offered their services to Jefferson Davis;
confederate and state bonds to meet the expense of the war were taken at
par wherever there was surplus money; men met at their courthouses to
drill without the call of their officers; and women, even more
enthusiastic than the men, urged their "guardians and protectors" to the
front to meet and vanquish a foe who threatened to invade the Southern
soil. Armories were quickly constructed in a country which knew little
of the mechanic arts; guns and ammunition were ordered from Europe and
from Northern manufacturers as fast as trusty agents could make
arrangements; shipbuilding was resorted to on the banks of the sluggish
rivers; and machinists and sailors were imported from the North and from
England to guide the amateurish hands of the South. Before midsummer
four hundred thousand Southerners were in arms or waiting to receive
them. Colonel Robert E. Lee, accounted the first soldier of the country,
was made a general in the new army. Joseph E. Johnston, Albert Sidney
Johnston, Pierre G. T. Beauregard, and others accepted with confidence
the commissions of the South, and set hundreds of younger men, trained
at West Point or at the Virginia Military Institute, to drilling and
organizing the armies rapidly gathering at strategic points along the
frontier, which extended from Norfolk, Virginia, to the eastern border
of Kansas.

The planters had at last made good their threat, and the aristocratic
society of the South was welded together more firmly than it had ever
been before. Their leaders frankly stated to the world that their four
billions of negro property was of more importance to them than any
federal union which threatened the value of that property by narrowing
the limits of its usefulness. The negroes knew a great war was beginning
and that they were the objects of contention; but long discipline and a
curious pride in the prowess of their masters kept them at their lowly
but important tasks. They boasted that their masters could "whip the
world in arms." Of insurrections and the massacre of the whites, which
at one time had been a nightmare to the ruling classes of the South,
there was no rumor. And throughout the four years of war the slaves
remained faithful and produced by their steady, if slow, toil the food
supplies both for the people at home and for the armies at the front.

The small slaveholder was the most enthusiastic and resolute
secessionist and supporter of the Confederacy. He was just rising in the
world, and anything which barred the upward way was denounced as
degrading and insulting. A larger class of Southerners who joined with
measured alacrity the armies of defense were the small farmers of the
hills and poorer eastern counties; but the "sand-hillers" and
"crackers," the illiterate and neglected by-products of the planter
counties, were not minded to volunteer, though under pressure they
became good soldiers because they dreaded the prospect of hordes of free
negroes in the South more than they did the guns of the North. Small
farmers and landless whites all felt the necessity of holding the slaves
in bondage, and thus a society of sharp class distinctions, openly
acknowledged by all, was moulded into a solid phalanx by the proposed
invasion of the South and the almost certain liberation of the slaves.
Moreover, the churches of the South, including the Catholics in New
Orleans, Charleston, and elsewhere, were now at the height of their
power. Planters, farmers, and the so-called "poor whites" acknowledged
the importance of religious faith and discipline; and the leaders of the
churches, from the bishops of the Episcopalians to the humble pastors of
negro congregations, freely gave their blessings to slavery and urged
their membership to heroic sacrifice for the common cause. Sermons like
that of Dr. Palmer, of New Orleans, in November, 1860, were preached all
over the South, and they were as effective in stirring the warlike
impulses of the people as the fiery addresses of the most enthusiastic

Although there was a unity and a coöperation among all classes of people
from Washington City to southwestern Texas, there were certain areas in
which volunteers, even during the early days of excitement, were not
readily forthcoming. In the pine woods of the Carolinas and the Gulf
States, where nine tenths of the soil was still covered by primeval
forests, and among the high mountains of Virginia, North Carolina,
Georgia, and Tennessee, many people resisted the authority of the
Confederacy passively or actively from the beginning. From the southern
Appalachian region the Union armies drew at least 200,000 recruits, and
in certain counties of western North Carolina and eastern Tennessee more
soldiers per thousand of the population volunteered for the Federal
service than could be found in the most enthusiastic communities of the
North. Western Virginia revolted in 1861, and in 1863 she was received
into the Union as a loyal State, in spite of the absence of all
constitutional authority or precedent. Eastern Tennessee might have
pursued the same course if it had been possible for President Lincoln to
lend military assistance at the proper moment. Except in the valley and
southwestern counties of Virginia, most of the grain and
cattle-producing area of the South was indifferent to the cause of the
Confederacy. This was a serious handicap, for troops must be stationed
in many localities to maintain order, and the resistance to the foraging
agents of the Southern armies frequently became serious. From the summer
of 1863 to the end of the struggle the home guards of the various
disaffected districts required many men who might otherwise have been
with Lee or Joseph E. Johnston.

But the better parts of the South, the tobacco and cotton belts, with
their annual output of three hundred millions' worth of exportable
commodities, their high-strung, well-bred gentry accustomed to outdoor
life and horseback riding and devoted to the idea of local autonomy in
government, were behind the Confederate movement. The people had been
better trained in their local militia than their Northern brethren,
their greatest families had long been accustomed to send cadets to West
Point, and in several States there were excellent military schools where
the best of training was given to young men who looked forward with a
vague expectation to careers in the army. If we add to these
considerations the fact that the rural aristocracy, whether secessionist
or unionist in politics in 1860, regarded the movements of the North in
the spring of 1861 as ruthless attacks upon their ideals and their
homes, we shall understand how the Confederates were able to organize a
powerful and efficient army so early in the struggle.

The Confederate seat of Government was removed in May, 1861, from
Montgomery to Richmond. The old Virginia capital, always the center of
strong unionist feelings, became the scene of cabinet meetings, of
sessions of Congress, and military conferences. The easy-going tobacco
gentry who had grown up with the little city on the James welcomed the
invasion of generals, politicians, and army contractors, and saw with
pleasure the population swell from some twenty-five thousand to a
hundred thousand souls. The "White House" became the center of a society
which, as Mrs. Pryor and others insisted, was really aristocratic. The
first families of Virginia became hosts to the statesmen who had
gathered there from all the Southern States; there were "heroes from
the wars" to grace the salons of Mrs. Stannard, Mr. William H.
McFarland, banker to the new government, and others who, but for the
disastrous turn of the conflict, would have become well-known figures in
history. The social life which was adorned by the presence of Mrs.
Jefferson Davis, Mrs. James Chesnut, and Mrs. Joseph E. Johnston was,
however, after one short winter of pleasure and buoyant expectation,
overcast with sorrow and even scattered abroad by the close approach of
the armies of the North, the hated Yankees who had not been expected to

The serious and all-absorbing business of the South was therefore to
repel invasion. Armies ranging from 5000 to 15,000 troops were stationed
at Norfolk, Williamsburg, Fredericksburg, northern Virginia, Harper's
Ferry, Cumberland Gap, Bowling Green and Columbus, Kentucky, and even in
Missouri. General A. S. Cooper, of New Jersey, became adjutant-general
and the senior officer in the Confederate Army; Robert E. Lee organized
and drilled the Virginia forces; Joseph E. Johnston, his rival in the
old United States Army, commanded at Harper's Ferry; and Beauregard, the
hero of Fort Sumter, was at the head of the army which was expected to
resist and defeat the first invasion from Washington. Behind these
various gatherings of soldiers were hundreds of thousands of others,
waiting to be supplied with arms and ready to learn the ways of war.
Editors, preachers, and orators heralded with unanimous voice the new
nation, and predicted speedy recognition by the powers of Europe and a
permanent peace with their long-time rivals. Three months, six months,
or a year were the various estimates of the duration of the war for
independence. Some planters followed the counsel of President Davis and
planted corn and wheat instead of the accustomed cotton and tobacco, in
order to be able to feed their armies and "their people," but others
were so certain that another autumn would reopen the channels of
commerce to all that they continued their large acreage in their
favorite staples. It was not to be a long struggle like that which
Washington had led. The conditions were different. Both England and
France would intervene when the cotton famine began to press. Even so
sober a man as General Lee expected success and thought of his rôle as
like that of Washington, who was now the Southern model and ideal.
Davis's friends also spoke and wrote of him as the "second Washington."

Thus filled with the highest hopes and reminded daily of the heroic
traditions of the former revolution, the Southerners began their
battles. President Lincoln, loath to admit that war was upon him, called
out 75,000 three months' men when the news of Fort Sumter reached him.
Congress, too, was called in extra session for July 4 to devise ways and
means of compelling the South to return to the fold. These warlike acts,
to those who did not understand the long sectional rivalry, were
supported by an almost unanimous North. The Northwest, led by Douglas,
was prompt to support their first real President and to hasten their
quota of volunteers to the front. In the older sections of the East the
latent hostility toward the people of the South flamed out as never
before, proclaiming a devotion to the Union and to the ideals of the
Fathers which had widespread effect. Even in the great cities, where the
prevailing sentiment in the preceding winter had been for peace and a
permanent disruption of the Union, men rallied to the national standards
with unexpected enthusiasm. The Astors, Belmonts, and Drexels raised
regiments or offered loans to the Administration. If the South was
united and ready to defend their homes, the North seemed equally united
upon a program of invasion and subjection. A solid South had begotten a
solid North. The shells which burst over Fort Sumter had called the
North to arms as effectively as they had banished the hesitation of the
Southern border States.

An army of invasion gathered rapidly in Washington, seized Arlington,
General Lee's ancient family estate, on the Virginia shore of the
Potomac, for a drill ground, took possession of recalcitrant Maryland,
and made of all railroads entering the capital the highways and
instruments of war. Winfield Scott, the old and vacillating general of
the regular army, was quickly set aside, and the able General Irvin
McDowell took his place. Thirty thousand troops moved slowly into
Virginia under the pressure of public opinion stimulated by newspaper
editors, ministers of the Gospel, and stiff-backed Republicans, who,
like similar classes in the South, declared that the war was to be over
in three months. Other armies collected at Cincinnati under young
George B. McClellan, soon to be major-general, at Louisville under Don
C. Buell, and at St. Louis under the erratic John C. Frémont. When
Congress met, all these movements were quickly ratified, and the two
sections of a country of more than thirty million people, all supposed
to be devotees of commerce, industry, and agriculture, "worshipers of
money," entered with unparalleled eagerness upon a war which was soon to
surprise and even appall the world. What industry lost in the North by
secession of the South was regained in the manufacture or preparation of
military supplies for soldiers who fought the South; and in the
Confederacy men who knew little of industry and of seafaring soon
established great plants where the munitions of war were readily made,
or they turned with a strange facility to improvising gunboats and
blockade runners. Within a year or two the people of the North showed
the most bitter hatred of the South and everything Southern, and in the
South women sold their hair for the common cause, and sent their gold
and silver ornaments to the Government to be converted into implements
of war. Such results could hardly have been the outcome of a hasty
decision on either side. The long-nursed dislike of the people of each
section now became a consuming hatred; it was a mighty struggle for the
mastery of the Government which had been founded in 1787-89, for the
control of the vast territory which composed the heart of North America.
One party or the other must be vanquished, one section or the other must
become a second Ireland.

On July 20, General McDowell attacked the army under General Beauregard
near Centreville, a Virginia village to the northward of a little stream
which gave its name to the battle that ensued,--Bull Run. About 35,000
Northerners made up the army of invasion; Beauregard commanded less than
20,000, but Joseph E. Johnston brought his army of 15,000 from the
Valley of Virginia in time to decide the fortunes of that hot summer
day. After stout fighting on both sides during the earlier part of the
onset, these fresh troops of the Valley were seen marching into action.
To Union eyes the 15,000 easily appeared to be 30,000. Panic seized men
and officers alike, and a stampede for Washington and safer ground
followed. Arms, provisions, horses, even, and the carriages of
stiff-backed Republican Congressmen, who had left their posts to see the
fun, were left upon the field and along the wayside as memorials of the
first battle. At the close of the day Jefferson Davis, Beauregard,
Johnston, and "Stonewall" Jackson, who won his proud soubriquet on that
famous field, held a conference and decided not to follow the Federals
to Washington that evening. On the morrow a heavy rain fell and the
roads of northern Virginia became impassable for a week. The defeated
forces had time to regain their composure while the people of both
sections began to see what war meant.

The Southerners rejoiced and celebrated, even relaxed their
preparations, thinking their valor vastly superior to that of their
enemies. President Davis was less confident, and pressed upon his
Congress the better organization of the armies, whose numbers now
mounted to 400,000 men; he sent James M. Mason and John Slidell as
commissioners to Europe, and ordered troops under Robert E. Lee to West
Virginia to save that recalcitrant region to Virginia and the
Confederacy. In the absence of a revenue, and already shut off from the
markets of both the North and Europe, the Confederates resorted to loans
and the issue of paper money to meet the enormous expenses of war. The
Confederate Government borrowed hundreds of millions from the planters,
and the States likewise piled up debts in unprecedented fashion in
maintenance of the same great cause. Of gold and silver there was
little; the banks had long since suspended specie payments, but
increased their issues of notes. The cotton crop, then being harvested
by the negroes, and the grain and cattle of the hill country were the
chief resources. The paper money of the Government was paid to soldiers,
farmers, and planters for their services and supplies, and this was
given back to the Government in exchange for interest-bearing bonds that
were issued. With a European market for the planters' products the
system might easily have been successful; but this one essential to
victory failed, or waited upon military success.

The first general election came on in the late autumn. Under the
stimulus of the victory at Manassas, or Bull Run, Davis and Stephens
were elected President and Vice-President without opposition for terms
of six years. New Senators and Representatives were chosen, generally
from the ranks of conservative politicians, for the sessions of the
regular Confederate Congress, which was to supersede the provisional
congress and government on Washington's birthday, 1862. The judiciary of
the Confederacy was regularly organized except as to the Supreme Court;
the adjustments of national and state relations were all rapidly and
easily made; while the selection and appointment of high officers in the
army and civil administration went steadily on at Richmond, under the
relief from military pressure which the success of Beauregard and
Johnston in northern Virginia had secured. In the general security some
of the ablest officers of the army, especially Joseph E. Johnston, felt
free to attack the President in the newspapers because of the failure to
give the highest commands according to rank of officers in the former
United States Army,--a quarrel which was destined to have a fatal
influence in the final overthrow of the new government. There was also
an attempt to fix upon Davis the blame for not capturing Washington City
the day after the Bull Run _débâcle_. However, these were as yet but
ripples of discontent which only proved the general confidence of the
people in their final triumph.


F. E. Chadwick's _The Causes of the Civil War_ (1906) and J. K. Hosmer's
_The Appeal to Arms_ (1906) are the best brief and recent accounts of
the events of 1859 to 1862. But Rhodes, McMaster, and Schouler cover the
period to 1876, each after his distinctive method. John C. Ropes's _The
Story of the Civil War_ (1894), continued by W. R. Livermore, treats the
military history in the most critical and fair-minded way, though Wood
and Edmonds's _The Civil War in the United States_ (1905), and G. P. R.
Henderson's _Stonewall Jackson and the American Civil War_ (1900), are
equally good, if somewhat briefer.

Of original material there is no limit, and the student is compelled to
find his way through the uncharted wilderness of evidence in the
_Rebellion Records_, already cited, and the thousands of volumes of
memoirs and special contemporary narratives of which U. S. Grant's
_Personal Memoirs_ (1886), Joseph B. Johnston's _Narrative of Military
Operations_ (1874), Nicolay and Hay's _Abraham Lincoln: a History_
(1890), and _Battles and Leaders of the Civil War_ (1887-89), are
perhaps the most important. Almost all the officers of both the Union
and Confederate armies, with the unique exception of General Lee, left
published or unpublished narratives of their rôles in the great struggle
which help to clear up most disputed episodes, though they complicate
the task of the historian.

The estimates of the numbers of men engaged on both sides by Ropes,
Rhodes, and especially T. L. Livermore in his _Numbers and Losses_, are
most trustworthy, though this is a subject still hotly controverted in
both North and South. Each of the great battles has its historian: H. V.
Boynton, _The Battle of Chickamauga_, and Morris Schaff, _The Battle of
the Wilderness_, being the best examples.

                                 CHAPTER XV

                             ONE NATION OR TWO?

The distressing news of Bull Run brought home to the North the awful
realities of war. Men who had all along distrusted the Republican party
now denounced a war waged for the emancipation of the South's slaves.
Both the President and Congress formally announced that it was a
struggle for the maintenance of the Union and not a war on behalf of the
slaves. It was well that this position was taken, else the North might
have broken into impotent factions. The East hated the South and warred
upon their ancient rivals, the planters; the border States owned slaves,
disliked the Republican party, and feared the purposes of those in
power; while the West loved the Union, held the negro in contempt, and
was committed to the party in power on the smallest possible margin.

None but Lincoln seemed to possess the tact and the ability necessary to
hold together these dissolving elements of a country never yet
thoroughly united; and even he was long doubted and distrusted by many
good men. Strange as it may seem, Douglas had been, until his death,
June 3, 1861, his right arm. Douglas's last speeches and dying words
urged upon the millions of his followers the necessity of giving their
lives to the cause of the Union. So critical was the situation that when
nominations were made for elective office in the Middle States or the
West in 1861, the Administration party took pains to disavow its former
attitude and put forward candidates who had been regular Democrats, thus
following the same compromising policy which Davis inaugurated in the
South. Daniel S. Dickinson, a member of the old Polk and Pierce party of
ruthless expansion, was made leader of the Administration forces in New
York in 1861, and David Tod, a stanch Douglas man in 1860, was elected
Governor of Ohio the same year by Republican votes. John C. Frémont was
removed from the command of the Federal army in St. Louis because he
undertook to emancipate the slaves in his department. The people of the
North were not willing to invade the sister States of the South for any
other cause than to restore the Union. Wealthy bankers, industrial
leaders, and railway magnates might be kept together on a platform of
enlarging the area of their operations, but never on a program which
proposed the confiscation of billions of dollars' worth of property,
which the slaves represented. In this hour of trial the supreme need was
coöperation and union among the diverse elements of the North, for in
1862 another Congress would be chosen, and if party lines were suffered
to be drawn, the South would certainly gain her independence.

[Illustration: One Nation, or Two?]

With this Unionist program perfectly understood, Lincoln asked Congress
for 400,000 men. Congress gave him 500,000. A second wave of warlike
enthusiasm swept over the North, and men enlisted not for three months,
but for three years. The zeal and _abandon_ of the South was hardly
matched, but there was no lack of men or support. With a few exceptions
the newspapers, the pulpits, and the lecture platforms urged most ardent
support of the common cause. But the more difficult problem of finding
money for the vast armies that moved upon the South was not so quickly
solved. Secretary Chase reported the expenditure in the three months of
June, July, and August of a hundred millions--an amount greater far than
the total national debt. Before another three months had passed this
expenditure had doubled, and the Secretary estimated that $500,000,000
would be needed before the end of June, 1862! These were astounding
figures to a country whose normal annual income was about $50,000,000.
And what was worse, the financial men refused to take government bonds
at par, as they had done during the war with Mexico, although they were
now offered interest at the rate of six to eight per cent. The country
had recovered from the panic of 1857, and as business activity increased
and the general prosperity became certain, it was more difficult for the
Government to borrow money. The suspension of specie payments by all the
banks before the end of the year did not mean panic or severe economic
crisis, as had hitherto been the case; rather, a change from metallic to
paper money. Secretary Chase was told by New York leaders in December,
1862, that government bonds bearing six per cent interest would hardly
bring sixty cents on the dollar. Yet business men borrowed money at four
per cent and the wheels of industry and commerce were moving at full
speed. Prosperity in the North was thus almost as fatal to the Union as
adversity in the South was to the Confederacy. Rather than advertise a
collapse of the federal credit by selling bonds at a discount of twenty
to forty per cent the guiding spirits at Washington decided to issue
notes as legal tender to the amount of $150,000,000, increased to
$300,000,000 a little later. Immediately, bankers and business men who
refused to take bonds protested with such vigor and resolution that
Chase and Lincoln, unlearned in the ways of finance, knew not what
course to take. To sell bonds at enormous discounts and high rates of
interest was bad; to tax the people directly for the needs of the
Government would have ruined the party in power; and to issue fiat money
was equivalent to forcing the poor to lend what the rich refused. But
the emergency was great. It was decided to issue and float "greenbacks"
and also to sell bonds in unprecedented numbers. Though the markets of
the world were open to the North and business was as active as ever in
the history of the country, the Federal Government was thus reduced,
like the Confederacy, to the use of paper money, and, surprising as it
may appear, the securities of the latter sold in Europe at a higher
price than those of the former. Gold and silver disappeared entirely in
both sections.

But the eyes of the public were fixed on military movements, not
finance, and as the winter of 1861-62 wore on an army of a hundred
thousand men gathered around Washington for the second invasion of
Virginia. George B. McClellan, the "young Napoleon," drilled and
organized the raw recruits while public opinion began to urge another
march upon Richmond. Other armies nearly a hundred thousand strong
spread over Kentucky and threatened Tennessee at Cumberland Gap, Bowling
Green, and Forts Henry and Donelson. In February Ulysses S. Grant saw
the strategic importance of the forts on the Cumberland and Tennessee
Rivers, and before the first of March he had captured both, and the
whole of West Tennessee lay open to him. Nashville fell as he moved up
the Tennessee, and Commodore Foote opened the Mississippi River almost
to Vicksburg during the early spring. Meanwhile Albert Sidney Johnston
had retreated to northern Mississippi. Finding Grant in a weak position
on the southern bank of the Tennessee near Shiloh Church, he hastily
gathered his discouraged troops about him for a sudden attack upon the
invaders. Grant had nearly 45,000 men and he knew that General Buell was
only a few miles away with 37,000 more. Johnston had 40,000. The purpose
of the Confederate general was known to his men, and all were inspired
with the determination of striking a blow before the two armies of the
enemy could unite. Johnston's assistants in command were Beauregard and
Bragg, both able and experienced officers. On the morning of April 6,
the Confederates fell upon Grant's outposts and drove them headlong
against the main body. Desperate valor was shown in the ensuing attack,
and before the afternoon it seemed that nothing could save the Union
army and its commander from complete disaster. The river was in high
flood, two impassable creeks flanked the Federals, while the victorious
Confederates held the fourth side of the field. At two o'clock Johnston
fell mortally wounded; Beauregard succeeded to command, and about four
o'clock the attack slackened; at six it ceased altogether, though the
Union forces were demoralized and expecting to be captured. Grant was
saved. With the support of Buell at hand he attacked Beauregard on the
morrow and regained some of his lost prestige. The "promenade" up the
Tennessee had been halted; but the loss of Johnston was equal to the
loss of an army. This fighting of South and West was of the most
desperate character, for Grant lost more than 10,000 in killed and
wounded, while Johnston and Beauregard lost 9700.

The march of Grant and Buell across middle and western Tennessee and the
opening of the Mississippi to Memphis was accompanied by the loss to
the Confederates of Missouri and a part of Arkansas. Grant's objective
in the summer and autumn of 1862 was Vicksburg, but the Confederates
held him fast in the neighborhood of Corinth, Mississippi. Buell
withdrew from middle Tennessee in the late summer, when Bragg, commander
of a second Confederate army in the West, moved through eastern
Tennessee into Kentucky, threatening Lexington and Louisville. But Bragg
failed after some successes in September to carry the tide of war back
toward the Ohio, and he was followed in October by the army of the Ohio,
now under the command of General W. S. Rosecrans, toward Murfreesboro,
Tennessee, where another sanguinary battle was fought on the last day of
December, 1862. Rosecrans now had 43,000 men, Bragg 38,000. After a
desperate encounter in which the honors inclined to the Confederate
side, Bragg withdrew toward Chattanooga, his base of operations, and
Rosecrans encamped at Murfreesboro. The Federal losses in this
engagement were more than 13,000, the Confederate somewhat over 9000,
and the only advantage was the gaining of a few miles of territory. The
war in the West which began so brilliantly for the Federals at Forts
Henry and Donelson seemed to have come to a halt. Grant was unable to
penetrate the lower South, and Rosecrans was content to leave Bragg in
undisturbed possession of the region between Murfreesboro and

Meanwhile the eyes of the two warring powers were concentrated on the
operations in Virginia. McClellan moved in March, 1862, upon Richmond
by way of the Yorktown Peninsula, a swampy wild region over which it was
difficult, indeed, to move an army. He commanded 125,000 men, and 40,000
more were in the neighborhood of Washington to make a diversion in his
favor in case of necessity. Joseph E. Johnston, who had held chief
command in Virginia since Bull Run, shifted his position promptly from
northern Virginia to Richmond to meet the threatened attack. He had no
more than 55,000 men. As McClellan worked his way slowly up the
peninsula Johnston fortified his position along the ridges east and
north of the Confederate capital, which stood on the hills just above
tidewater. From Hanover Court-House to Malvern Hill, a distance of some
twenty-five miles, the two armies confronted each other in irregular
lines conforming to the topography of the region. Late in May, Johnston
attacked McClellan on the Union right, and the fighting continued two or
three days, now at one point, now at another of the long lines. On May
31, in the battle of Fair Oaks, Johnston was severely wounded and the
command devolved upon Robert E. Lee, whose failure to hold West Virginia
against McClellan during the preceding autumn had temporarily eclipsed
his growing reputation. Lee's management of his forces during the early
days of his new command was faulty; but before the 23d of June he had
received reinforcements from the Carolinas and Georgia which brought his
total almost to 60,000; and he relied on "Stonewall" Jackson, who was
just concluding a wonderful campaign in the Valley of Virginia, to come
to his assistance with his corps of 16,000. But McClellan still had
105,000 fairly trained soldiers, and there was no reason to doubt that a
second Union army was forming near Alexandria. It was a critical moment.

Meanwhile, Jackson's operations in the Shenandoah Valley had so startled
and astounded the Federals that he was able to march, June 20-25,
unobserved, over the passes of the Blue Ridge Mountains to Lee's
assistance. A series of battles began June 26 at Mechanicsville on
McClellan's right, near where Johnston had fought. But the failure of
Jackson to arrive and begin the attack, according to agreement, caused
the first Confederate onset to fail, with heavy losses to the South. The
next day, however, the tide turned the other way and Lee routed
McClellan at Gaines' Mill. McClellan now retreated across White Oak
Swamp towards Harrison's Landing on the James. The weather was hot, the
ground soft from rains, and the underbrush so thick and tangled that men
could not see each other at a distance of ten paces, save in the narrow
roads or small clearings. Realizing the difficulties under which his
opponent labored, Lee ordered hasty pursuit, and ineffective blows were
struck at Savage's Station and in White Oak Swamp. Jackson again failed
to maintain the great reputation he had won in the Valley, and Magruder,
Holmes, and Huger, other lieutenants of Lee, not knowing their own
country as well as did the Federals, suffered their commands to be lost
in the wilderness and thus aided McClellan in his escape from a
dangerous situation. On July 1 the retreating Union army gathered, still
devoted to its commander, on Malvern Hill, within support of the Federal
gunboats in the James River below. The Confederates, confident and
expectant, poured out of the woods from every direction, formed in
battle array, and charged over open fields and rising ground toward the
two hundred and fifty great guns which had been dragged for weeks
through the swamps in the hope of just such an opportunity. The attempt
of Lee to carry this impregnable position lost the Confederates as many
brave men as all the other six days of unremitting warfare. McClellan
held his own till night; Lee withdrew to the neighboring thickets,
surprised at the resolute strength of an opponent who had avoided battle
at every turn since June 26.

The week of fighting and scouring the woods had cost the North nearly
16,000 men; the South, 20,000. The retreat on July 2 to Harrison's
Landing was McClellan's confession of failure, which sorely distressed
his superiors in Washington and greatly depressed the spirits of the
North. Lee's first essay at war on a large scale had saved the
Confederate capital, though at fearful cost, and he was everywhere
regarded as a great general. From this time Davis and the Confederate
Government gave him the fullest confidence, and the people of the South
came to think of him as almost superhuman. Though he was bold in action
and even reckless of human life, his soldiers gave him an obedience and
a reverence which no other commander in American history has ever
received. Jackson, Longstreet, and D. H. and A. P. Hill had also won
fame in this baptism of blood. To the average Southerner the outlook was
once more exceedingly bright. Richmond breathed freely, and the
Government bent its energies to the task of supplying its able officers
with men and means.

While the Federal Government was deciding what to do with McClellan and
his army, still almost twice as large as Lee's, the Confederate
commander sent Jackson with some 20,000 men to the neighborhood of Bull
Run, where the commands of McDowell, Banks, and Frémont had been united
to make a third army of invasion. General John Pope was brought from
successful operations in the West to Washington, where Secretary Edwin
M. Stanton, assuming more and more the directing authority of the
Government, prepared, with the assistance of Senator Benjamin F. Wade, a
proclamation which Pope was to distribute among the troops. "I come from
the West, where we have always seen the backs of our enemies," ran this
remarkable admonition to Eastern, officers and men. "Let us look before
us and not behind." Most of the 50,000 men who were soon to meet Jackson
and Lee resented the comparison and the affront. On August 9 a sharp
encounter at Cedar Mountain showed how resolute and real was the purpose
of Lee to drive this army out of Virginia. When President Lincoln
removed McClellan and ordered the Army of the Potomac in part to
Washington, in part to Acquia Creek, near Fredericksburg, to support
Pope, and gave the command of all the armies of the East to General H.
W. Halleck, for whom Grant had won high reputation earlier in the year,
Lee hastened northward to defeat Pope before these reinforcements could
arrive. The Union forces north of Bull Run amounted now to nearly 75,000
men; Lee had 55,000, but there was no thought of delay. On the 29th and
30th Pope was crushed and routed completely in a series of maneuvers and
battles which have been pronounced the most masterly in the whole war.
For four days the discouraged and baffled troops and officers of the
Union retreated or ran pell-mell across the northern counties of
Virginia into Washington, to the dismay of Lincoln and the friends of
the Federal cause. It was at this moment, too, that Bragg was advancing,
as already described, into Kentucky and threatening to seize Lexington
and Louisville. It was a dark hour to the patient and patriotic Lincoln,
who had never dreamed that such catastrophes could be the result of his
reluctant decision, in early April, 1861, to hold Fort Sumter.

General Halleck proved uncertain and dilatory; the Army of the Potomac
was generally dissatisfied and clamoring for the restoration of
McClellan, who, like Joseph E. Johnston, of the South, was always
popular with his men; the Cabinet, too, was uncertain and hopelessly
divided in its counsels. The cause of the Union was exceedingly doubtful
in September, 1862, as Lee entered Maryland, publishing abroad his call
to the Southern element of that State to rise and join their brethren of
the Confederacy. Public opinion in the North was divided and depressed.
The abolitionists of the East were pressing every day through Sumner and
Chase for a proclamation emancipating the slaves, which might have
driven Maryland and Kentucky into the arms of the enemy; the Northwest
was in turmoil, for there abolitionism was as unpopular as slavery
itself, and leading men declared that it was a war for the Union, for a
great common country, not a struggle to overthrow the institutions of
the South. There was still no great party, sure of a majority in the
coming elections, upon which the President could rely, and the loss of a
majority in Congress would have been fatal.

Under these circumstances Lee, Longstreet, and Jackson entered Maryland
at a point some fifty miles above Washington, with their army
enthusiastic and self-confident because of recent victories. It seemed
almost certain that another victory, and this on the soil of the North,
would secure Confederate recognition in Europe. Reluctantly Lincoln
restored McClellan to the command of the Union army which was moving
northwestward to confront Lee. An accident, one of those small things in
war which sometimes determines the fate of nations, put into McClellan's
hands the orders of Lee for the Maryland campaign. General D. H. Hill
dropped his copy of these important and highly confidential instructions
upon the ground as he was breaking camp on the morning of the 12th of
September. On the same day this tell-tale document was handed to the
Federal commander. Almost a third of Lee's army was on its way to
Harper's Ferry, many miles to the west, to seize that post, which
McClellan thought had already been evacuated. McClellan began to press
upon the Confederates as they retired from their advanced position to
the valley of Antietam Creek. South Mountain, a spur of the Blue Ridge,
lay between the armies. On September 16, McClellan crossed the passes
and confronted Lee, who was now on the defensive. A most sanguinary
battle followed on the 17th, and the Confederates, having suffered
losses of nearly 12,000 men, retired to northern Virginia. The campaign
was closed, for McClellan was too cautious to risk a second attack, and
Lee retired to a safe position south of the Potomac. The consternation
of the North subsided and President Lincoln gave out the announcement
that if war continued till January he would emancipate the slaves by
executive order in all the States which at that time refused to
recognize the Federal authority.

The elections which came in October and November following ran heavily
against the Administration. New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Ohio,
Indiana, Illinois, and Wisconsin, Republican States in 1860, went
Democratic. Only in States where the war upon the South, as the ancient
enemy, was popular did the Administration receive hearty support. In the
moderate States like Pennsylvania and the border States like Kentucky,
the Republican party had practically ceased to exist. The Emancipation
Proclamation had served to emphasize the almost fatal cleavage in
Northern public opinion.

But the fortunes of both sides depended on victory in the field as well
as votes in Congress, and all eyes turned again to the movements of Lee.
The failure of McClellan to follow Lee and deliver battle led to his
second removal from command. Ambrose E. Burnside, a corps commander who
had done good work at Antietam, succeeded, and in obedience to the
orders of the War Department moved directly upon Richmond by way of
Fredericksburg, with an army of 122,000. But Lee confronted him on the
south bank of the Rappahannock, and though his forces were only a little
more than half as strong, there was no uneasiness at Confederate
headquarters. On the 12th of December Burnside crossed the Rappahannock
and attacked Lee, who held the formidable hills on the southern bank of
that stream. Another bloody battle ensued. After a vain and hopeless
sacrifice of 12,000 men, Burnside withdrew to the northern bank of the
river. The active fighting of 1862 had come to a close. In northern
Mississippi Grant and Sherman were blocked; at Murfreesboro, Tennessee,
the armies of Rosecrans and Bragg were about to make their fruitless
onsets already mentioned, and in Virginia the Union outlook was quite as
dark as it had been after the first unfortunate trial at arms in July,
1861. Lincoln thought of removing Grant because of the failure of the
campaign in northern Mississippi, but gave him another opportunity;
Burnside resigned a command he had not sought, and Joseph Hooker took up
the difficult problem of beating Lee.

At Washington the deepest gloom prevailed. On July 2, 1862, before the
news of McClellan's failure to capture Richmond had reached the people,
a call for 300,000 three-year men was made. Then came the disaster of
Second Manassas and the invasion of Maryland. Recruiting went on
drearily during the fall, when most signs pointed to the failure of all
the gigantic efforts to maintain the Union. The writ of _habeas corpus_,
so dear to Anglo-Saxons, had been frequently suspended; arbitrary
arrests were made in all parts of the North, and many well-known men
were held in military and other prisons without warrant or trial.
Stanton and Seward with the approval of the President issued orders for
the seizure of men at night, and the mysterious disappearances of public
men in places where opposition had been shown served to warn people
against displeasing their own officers at the capital. The cost of the
war had mounted to $2,500,000 a day, while the gross receipts of the
Government were not more than $600,000 a day. When the time came to put
into force the Emancipation Proclamation, the people were in greater
doubt than ever about the wisdom of the move, and Secretary Seward wrote
to a friend condemning utterly this effort to raise a servile war in the
South. The letter found its way into the newspapers and showed once more
the cleavage of Northern public opinion. The radical East approved, the
nationalist West disapproved, and business men, bankers, merchants, and
manufacturers, whom Seward best represented, went on their indifferent
ways, refusing to lend money to the Government save on usurious terms,
and at the same time denouncing its policy of paying debts by issuing
irredeemable paper. Lincoln had lost the confidence of the public, even
of Congress; but, as he himself said, no other man possessed more of
that confidence. An honest German merchant wrote home to friends that
if the North could only exchange officers with the Confederates, the war
would be over in a few weeks. In the midst of the depression the
Secretary of the Treasury issued another $100,000,000 of greenbacks to
meet pressing needs; and to fill up the ranks of the armies a Federal
conscript law was enacted in March, 1863, only a little less drastic
than the Confederate measure which was said to "rob both the cradle and
the grave."

Under these circumstances Hooker moved half-heartedly upon Lee. The two
armies, the Union out-numbering the Confederate more than two to one,
met in the dreary and almost impenetrable forest, southwest of
Fredericksburg, known as the Wilderness, though the battle which
followed bears the name of Chancellorsville. For five days the bloody
work went on, with the result that Hooker retired beaten and humiliated
before his enemy. Lee and the South had also lost their greatest
general, Stonewall Jackson, and the people of the South were feeling to
the full the disasters of war. But Lee gathered his forces from Norfolk,
Petersburg, and Richmond, every regiment that could be spared, more than
80,000 men, and set his face once more toward western Maryland and
Pennsylvania, where he confidently expected to wrest a peace from the
stubborn North. The Army of the Potomac moved on interior lines toward
Gettysburg, leaving some regiments in Washington against an emergency.
The people of Pennsylvania and New York were panic-struck; a second time
the evils of war had been transferred from Southern to Northern
territory. Great cities have not been famous for self-control and
philosophy when their banks and their rich storehouses have been
threatened with ruin. Philadelphia and New York were no exceptions to
the rule, and if it had been left to them the war would have been
brought to a close before Lee crossed the Pennsylvania border.

Once more the Union commander was changed. Upon the modest shoulders of
General George Gordon Meade fell the heavy responsibility of saving the
riches of the Middle States and the cause of the Union, for all felt
that a Confederate victory in the heart of the North would bring the
tragedy to a close. Lee was so bold and confident that he was hardly
more cautious in the disposition of his troops than he had been when
fighting on his own soil. Meade secured a strong position on the hills
about the since famous village of Gettysburg, and awaited attack; he had
somewhat more than 90,000 men, who were, however, still laboring under
the delusion that Lee was invincible and that their commanders were
unequal to those of the adversary. Without waiting for the return of his
cavalry and without trying, like Napoleon at Austerlitz, to entice the
Federals away from their fortifications, General Lee pressed forward. On
July 1 the Confederates gained some advantage in the fighting; on the
second day they held their own; but on the third day they attempted,
somewhat after the manner of Burnside at Fredericksburg, the impossible,
and the best army the South ever had was hopelessly beaten. About 30,000
of their brave men were dead, wounded, or missing. Meade had not
suffered so great a loss, and he had saved the cause of his Government.
After a day of waiting the Confederate army took up its march unmolested
toward northern Virginia. While the people of the North rejoiced at
their deliverance, the news came that Grant had captured Vicksburg and
all the 30,000 men who had defended that important point. The
Mississippi went on its way "unvexed to the sea," as Lincoln said, for
New Orleans had long since fallen and the upper river had been cleared
of all resistance. At only one point on the long line from Washington to
Vicksburg had the Confederates held their own--Chattanooga, whence Bragg
had retreated earlier in the year and where the next great battle was to
be fought.

Hastily Davis ordered his available regiments to Bragg, who held the
mountain ridges south of Chattanooga. Lee, who felt strong enough to
hold Meade in check in northern Virginia, sent away Longstreet with his
veterans. September 19, Rosecrans attacked Bragg on his impregnable
hills, and after two days of heroic fighting and appalling losses he
retired to the city. Bragg had won a victory similar in every respect to
that which crowned Meade's efforts at Gettysburg. Though slow, unpopular
with officers and men, and unimaginative, he soon seized the strong
points on the river above and below the city, and Rosecrans was
surrounded, besieged, for the single, almost impassable road to
Nashville and the North would not bear the burden of necessary supplies.
If Bragg had proved watchful and alert, it would have been only a matter
of time when the Federals would have been driven by famine to


Mr. Gamaliel Bradford has published some extremely interesting studies
of the war-time leaders, of which, _Lee, the American_ (1912) is by far
the most important, though his _Confederate Portraits_ (1914) including
character sketches of most of the eminent Southern generals, offer a
great deal that is suggestive. In volume _IV_ of Mr. Rhodes's _History_
there are two chapters which treat of the life of the people of North
and South in the most interesting manner. In addition to the more
general works already cited, one may turn to George C. Gorham's _Life
and Public Services of Edwin M. Stanton_ (1889); George H. Haynes's
_Charles Sumner_ in _American Crises_ biographies; Henry Cleveland's
_Alexander H. Stephens in Public and in Private_ (1866); A. B. Hart's
_Salmon Portland Chase_ in _American Statesmen_ series; Frederic
Bancroft's _The Life of William H. Seward_ (1900); and Carl Schurz's
_Reminiscences_ (1907-08); H. A. Wise's _Seven Decades of the American
Union_ (1876); and J. W. DuBose's _The Life and Times of William L.
Yancey_ (1892).

The diplomatic history of the war will be found in J. M. Callahan's
_Diplomatic History of the Southern Confederacy_ (1901); J. W. Foster's
_A Century of American Diplomacy_ (1900); Charles Francis Adams's
_Charles Francis Adams_ (1900), in _American Statesmen_ series; Charles
Francis Adams's _Lee at Appomatox_ (1909); and _Transatlantic
Solidarity_ (1913); and Pierce Butler's _Judah P. Benjamin_, in
_American Crises_ biographies.

Of contemporary accounts to be added to those already mentioned are W.
T. Sherman's _Memoirs of General W. T. Sherman_ (1875), and especially
the _Home Letters of General Sherman_, edited by M. A. DeWolfe Howe
(1909); G. B. McClellan's _McClellan's Own Story_ (1887); E. A.
Pollard's _A Southern History of the War_ (1866); Horace Greeley's _The
American Conflict_ (1864-67); and Jefferson Davis's _Rise and Fall of
the Confederate Government_ (1881).

                                 CHAPTER XVI

                       THE COLLAPSE OF THE CONFEDERACY

As one looks to-day over the sources of the history of the great Civil
War, it seems plain that the responsible spokesmen of the Confederacy
should have made overtures to the North for peace on the basis of an
indissoluble union of the warring sections in the autumn of 1863. But
the Southern leader who proposed reunion at that time would have been
regarded as untrue to his cause or unduly timid. Neither Jefferson Davis
nor General Lee had any thought of surrender, though from the attitude
of representatives of the United States it was plain that an offer to
return to the Union would have been met with ample guaranties to the
owners of slaves and full amnesty to those who had brought on the war.
Alexander Stephens alone foresaw the outcome and began now to ask for a
new national convention in which terms of restoration and permanent
union should be fixed. Stephens was, however, already out of harmony
with President Davis; and the State of Georgia, led by Joseph E. Brown,
the Governor, and the Confederate Vice-President himself, was regarded
by loyal Southerners as recalcitrant and therefore not authorized to
propose solutions of the problem. The cup of Southern defeat and
humiliation had not been drained to the bottom.

The Confederacy owed, at the end of the year 1863, $1,221,000,000; the
State Governments, the counties and cities, probably owed as much more.
Paper money, the only medium of exchange, was fast giving way to barter.
One dollar in gold was worth twenty dollars in Confederate currency. The
monthly wage of a common soldier was not sufficient to buy a bushel of
wheat. People who lived in the cities converted their tiny yards into
vegetable gardens; the planters no longer produced cotton and tobacco,
but supplies for "their people" and for the armies. The annual export of
cotton fell from 2,000,000 bales in 1860 to less than 200,000 in 1863,
and most of this came from areas under Federal control. The yearly
returns to the planters from foreign markets alone had fallen from the
huge returns of 1860 to almost nothing in 1863, and with the
disappearance of gold, or international money, from the South, the
Governments, Confederate and State, found their systems of taxation
breaking down. Early in 1864 taxes were made payable in corn, bacon, or
wheat, not in paper money, which every one refused to accept at face
value. Planters and farmers great and small were now required to
contribute one tenth of their crops to the Government. This would have
given to the armies an ample supply, but the railroads were already
breaking down, while wagons and country roads were also unable to bear
the unparalleled burden. It was a difficult situation. The States made
it worse by resisting the authority of the Confederacy; while the
Confederacy was unable either to raise money on loans or gather taxes in
kind from farmers who preferred always to pay in "lawful money." The
Confederacy was getting into debt beyond all chance of redemption, and
the States were likewise mortgaged to the utmost limit of their credit
before the end of the year 1864.

But the tax law of 1864 was only one of the burdens under which
Southerners, who had never accustomed themselves to paying taxes in any
large way, groaned. In 1862 General Lee had urged upon Davis a conscript
law which would keep his ranks full. Congress grudgingly enacted the
required legislation, and later more drastic laws were passed; but the
simple people who occupied the remote mountain sections of the South and
the small farmers and tenants of the sandy ridges or piney woods
responded slowly when confronted by the officers of the law. Thousands
positively refused service in the armies and resorted to the dense
forests or swamps, where they were fed by friends and neighbors who
refused to assist the government recruiting agents. In the mountains of
Virginia, North Carolina, and Tennessee these people were so numerous
that the presence of troops was required to keep up the semblance of
obedience to law. Local warfare was the result in many places. Unionists
who had not been able to join the armies of the United States assisted
those who refused to serve in the Confederate ranks. As time went on
thousands of deserters joined the recalcitrants in the Southern hills,
and during the last year of the war it was a serious problem of State
and Confederate authorities what to do with these people, who now
numbered quite a hundred thousand men.

Resistance to tax-gatherers and to recruiting officers, and the
despondency which followed the disasters of 1863 and the tightening of
the Federal blockade, led to dissatisfaction and even resistance in the
loyal black belts. In North Carolina a peace movement, led by an able
newspaper editor, W. W. Holden, gained the sympathies of Governor Vance,
who had never liked Jefferson Davis nor really sympathized with the
cause of secession. In Virginia the friends of John B. Floyd, who had
been summarily dismissed from the army for his hasty surrender of Fort
Donelson in 1862, aided by the followers of John M. Daniel, editor of
the Richmond _Examiner_, did what they could to embarrass the
Confederate President. The Rhett influence in South Carolina and the
long-standing quarrel of Governor Brown of Georgia with Jefferson Davis
still further weakened the arm of Confederate administration. Even
William L. Yancey, the most fiery of the secessionist leaders of 1860,
devoted all his eloquence and abilities, from 1861 to the time of his
death in 1863, to attacking the Government of his own making. And to
make matters worse, the supreme courts of North Carolina and Georgia
undertook to annul the conscript law and other important acts of the
Confederate Congress, and thus inaugurated a war of the judges which
seriously undermined the prestige and the morale of the Confederate
Government. Confederate officers enrolled men for the army only to have
them released by state judges supported by their respective governors.
All the influence and abilities of Lee and Davis were required to
prevent a break-down in the spring of 1864, when the calls for more
troops and additional supplies were so numerous and pressing. West
Virginia was gone, Kentucky and Missouri, too, were wholly within the
Federal lines; and most of Tennessee, half of Mississippi, and nearly
all the region beyond the great river were lost to the Richmond
Government. New Orleans and Norfolk were once more parts of the United
States, while large strips of territory in eastern North Carolina, South
Carolina, and Florida were held in subjection by frowning gunboats.

[Illustration: The Confederacy in 1863]

A little cotton found its way through the beleaguered ports of Mobile,
Savannah, Charleston, and Wilmington to Europe, and brought the lucky
blockade runners and their owners rich returns. But trade was so small
and the dangers of capture were so many that few could look with any
real hope for a return of prosperity until the war was over. Europe
must intervene if cotton and tobacco and sugar were to regain their
kingly state. And this was the warmest wish of the Confederate
chieftains. When the battle of Fredericksburg was fought, all the world
thought that the desired recognition would come at once. James M. Mason,
the commissioner to England, wrote home that a large majority of the
House of Commons was willing to vote for acknowledging Southern
independence, and Charles Francis Adams, the Minister of the United
States, was of the same opinion. Gladstone, then one of the most popular
members of the British Cabinet, and a majority of his colleagues favored
the South. Palmerston declared, when the Emancipation Proclamation was
read to him, that Lincoln abolished slavery where he had no power to do
so and protected it where he had power to abolish it. Of the million
voters in England at least three fourths seemed ready to vote for
Southern recognition, and all the great manufacturers, the powerful
merchants, the country gentry, and great nobles were openly contemptuous
of the cause and policy of the North. Carlyle ridiculed the "Yankees,"
and Dickens made fun of Lincoln, Sumner, Chase, and the rest. It was
apparently only a matter of weeks before Lord Palmerston would ask
Parliament to authorize him to intervene in order to stop the "useless"
bloodshed and slaughter of the war between the States.

In France the ruling class, the bankers, the industrialists, the higher
clergy, and many of the party of free trade supported Napoleon III in
his well-known friendliness for the South. Moreover, the Emperor was
promoting a scheme to build for his Austrian friend, Maximilian, an
empire in Mexico, where the perennial war of factions was hotly raging.
Davis might aid such a move as a consideration for recognition, and
certainly Seward was too busy with his own troubles to intervene on
behalf of an "outworn" Monroe Doctrine. Slidell, the shrewd Confederate
commissioner to France, led the Emperor to expect Southern support of
his scheme, and at the same time borrowed millions of dollars in gold
from rich Paris bankers and hurried it off to the famishing Confederacy.
No revolutionary power ever had a fairer chance of winning its goal than
did that of Davis and Lee in the autumn of 1862 and winter of 1863.

The unexpected often happens. While Charles Francis Adams was being
coldly elbowed out of the salons of an unsympathetic English nobility,
and when Confederate bonds were selling both in London and Paris at or
near par, Secretary Chase sent Robert J. Walker, the former Mississippi
repudiator and successful Secretary of the Treasury under Polk, to
Europe for the purpose of breaking down Confederate credit and building
up that of the United States.

The commissioner of the Treasury Department began the publication of a
series of articles on the financial page of the London _Times_ which
seemed to show that Davis had been responsible for the repudiation of a
large issue of state bonds, many of them held in London, in 1843. All
that Mason and Slidell could do did not remove the suspicion that the
Confederate President would "repudiate" again. Men who had loaned large
sums of money to Mississippi could not be made to understand that Walker
himself had been the responsible agent of Mississippi in those days.
From the beginning of this unpleasant advertising of former American
financiering, in which Northern States had sinned quite as flagrantly as
Southern, Confederate credit in Europe declined. Her bonds were soon
withdrawn from the market. At the same time Walker succeeded in
borrowing $250,000,000 from European bankers, and thus at a critical
period he was able to prop the declining fortunes of his country. To say
that Walker destroyed the credit of the Confederacy and at the same time
restored that of the Union would be an exaggeration. But his services
were of incalculable value to the nationalist cause. When, therefore,
Napoleon asked England to join him in intervening between the warring
parties of the United States there was other reason, besides the strong
and vigorous activity of Charles Francis Adams, for the British Ministry
to postpone or decline coöperation.

Thus the bright Confederate outlook of 1862 had become dark in May,
1864, when General Grant, who had been brought from the field of his
brilliant operations in the West, took command of the army with which
Meade had expelled Lee from Pennsylvania. But conditions were not
encouraging in the North. Lincoln's popularity was still in eclipse.
Congress was resentful of his failures. Charles Sumner was denouncing
him every day in private and opposing him in public. Secretary Chase was
using the machinery of his great office to deprive his chief of a
renomination. The radicals of the East were still refusing their
approval of a policy which compromised with slavery in the border
States, and the Unionists of the Northwest were resentful toward a
President who was making war upon slavery. The Democrats of the North
were apparently stronger than ever, and their criticism of the
Government for suspending the writ of _habeas corpus_ and for hundreds
of arbitrary arrests gave conservative men pause. To all this must be
added the resistance in 1863 to the military drafts, the riots, the
extraordinary prosperity of business men which made recruiting, even
with the aid of laws almost as drastic as those of the South, almost
impossible. The cost in bounties to nation, state, and counties of one
enlistment in 1864 was about $1000; and when a regiment was thus made
up, a third of the men sometimes deserted within a few months and
reënlisted under other names, thus securing a second or a third series
of bounties.

Still the success of the Northern cause seemed to depend on the
renomination of Lincoln, for any other Republican Unionist would
certainly be defeated by the Democrats, who were fast uniting upon
General McClellan, exceedingly popular with both War Democrats and those
who had opposed the war from the beginning. If the outlook in the South
was discouraging, that of the North was almost as depressing.

With public opinion keen, critical, and watchful, the great duel
reopened in Virginia and Georgia in May, 1864. Grant attacked with an
army of 120,000 men; Lee returned the blow with a force of about 60,000
seasoned and resolute soldiers. From May 3 to June 12 the two great
generals fought over the tangled thickets and sandy ridges which extend
from the Wilderness to Cold Harbor near Richmond, where McClellan had
failed in 1862. Grant failed in every attempt to defeat his foe, and he
lost in that short period about 54,000 brave men--an army almost equal
in numbers to that which they opposed. The people and the papers of the
North were demanding the removal of their last general; United States
bonds and paper money were a drug on the stock market; it was reported
that Grant was drinking deeply. Lincoln knew that to remove his general
would be tantamount to surrender, for B. F. Butler, then on the lower
James, would be the only and last resort, and Lee would make short work
of that remarkable commander. There was a little encouragement in the
fighting of Sherman against Joseph E. Johnston, who was yielding more
and more of northern Georgia to his rival. But June and July, 1864, were
the darkest hours of the Union cause and of Lincoln, its champion.

Lee now felt himself secure in his position near Malvern Hill, and
expected daily to hear of the removal of his antagonist. But Grant, to
the surprise of all, performed the greatest feat of his military career
by safely placing all his army, still 120,000 strong, on the south side
of the James River, where there were no intrenchments and no other
obstacles to their marching upon Petersburg, the key to Richmond. This
was done with incredible facility, June 16, 17, and 18, while Lee
quietly waited for the enemy to attack him once more. While Lee thus
rested on his arms, Grant carried his army through the open country east
of Petersburg. Too late, June 18, the Confederate commander hastened all
his forces to the new scene of war. Grant had played an incomparable
ruse, and the Union army entered, with returning faith in its leader,
upon the last phase of its great task--the ruin of Lee.

Meanwhile General Sherman, with a force of 80,000, had been driving
Joseph E. Johnston, with 50,000 men, from Dalton in northern Georgia
toward Atlanta. From May 4 until July 18 the two armies maneuvered and
fought--each seeking without success to surprise the other. On the 17th
of July Sherman crossed the Chattahoochee some twenty miles north of
Atlanta. Georgia and the cotton belt of the lower South were in a panic.
Davis, never quite satisfied with Johnston's operations, yielded to the
clamors of Senators and Representatives, as well as military men, and
removed the general. John B. Hood, the new commander, began at once a
series of battles around the doomed city, losing in every encounter.
Atlanta fell on September 2. Sherman was left in quiet possession of
northern Georgia, while the Confederate army marched toward Nashville in
the hope of forcing a retreat and perhaps of regaining Tennessee. With
Grant at Petersburg, whose fall would compel the evacuation of Richmond,
and Sherman the master of Georgia, for such was the meaning of Hood's
movements, the days of the Confederacy seemed to be numbered.

Before these military successes had been gained, the leaders of the
Union cause were compelled to nominate a candidate for the Presidency.
Sumner, Greeley, William Cullen Bryant, and many other men of great
influence opposed Lincoln's renomination. A convention of radical
Republicans met at Cleveland during the last days of May. It nominated
John C. Frémont for President. But the regular Republican Convention met
a week later in Baltimore, formally disavowed its name, and assumed that
of the National Union party. Its chairman was Robert J. Breckinridge, a
Kentucky preacher and Unionist. Lincoln was renominated without
opposition, and, as a bid to the border States, Andrew Johnson, Union
Democrat of Tennessee, was nominated for Vice-President. However, the
reverses of Grant in Virginia weakened the position of the
Administration, and before the 1st of August trusted advisers of the
Government telegraphed "The apathy of the public mind is fearful." The
price of gold ranged during the summer from 200 to 285, and United
States securities sold at less than half their face value. The President
was compelled to order a draft of 500,000 men in July; the country met
the order with a groan. Congress asked for the appointment of a day of
fasting and penance, and Lincoln set the first Thursday in August as a
"day of national humiliation and prayer." So portentous was the outlook
that before the middle of August most of the eminent men in the Union
party had lost all heart. Greeley wrote, "Lincoln is already beaten." A
committee waited on the President to ask his formal withdrawal from the

Late in August, when the Unionist hopes were at their lowest, the
Democrats met in Chicago. Governor Seymour, of New York, Representatives
Pendleton, of Ohio, Voorhees, of Indiana, and the unpopular Clement L.
Vallandigham were in charge of the proceedings. Southern leaders
came over from Canada and even representatives of the Sons of
Liberty, a group of Northwesterners who were resisting the National
Administration, were participants in the convention. Vallandigham, a
"peace-at-any-price" man, secured the passage of a resolution which
declared the war a failure, but the War Democrats dictated the
nomination and made George B. McClellan the candidate of the party. The
general, who had fought some of the great battles of the war, repudiated
the Vallandigham resolution, but accepted the proffered leadership. On
the day the convention adjourned it seemed clear to the thoughtful men
of the country that the Democrats would win the election, and that they
would in that event bring the war to a close by acknowledging Southern

But before the delegates had reached their homes, the telegraph
announced the fall of Atlanta. Commodore Farragut had just taken Mobile
after a long and heroic struggle. President Lincoln, a masterful
manipulator of popular opinion, now called upon the country to assemble
in their churches and give thanks to God for the splendid victories of
Sherman and Farragut. Early in September General Phil Sheridan invaded
the Shenandoah Valley, made famous by Jackson in the beginning of the
war, and won a decisive victory at Winchester. Before the end of the
month he had burned thousands of barns, slaughtered many thousands of
cattle, and destroyed the newly harvested grain in all that rich region.
His terse remark that a crow could not cross the Valley without taking
with him his provisions received widespread applause, and showed what a
desperate character the war had taken. Sherman, too, took up his march
through the rich black belt of Georgia, destroying everything that came
within his reach. The people of the North took heart, especially the
stiff-backed Republicans who during the two years preceding had found
little to approve in the measures of the Government. Sumner, who had
called Lincoln the American Louis XVI; Thaddeus Stevens, who had
declared that he knew only one Lincoln man in the House of
Representatives; Horace Greeley, Secretary Chase, and even Governor
Andrew of Massachusetts, all united now to praise the President and urge
his cause before the country. The last great crisis of the war in the
North had been passed. A decisive victory at the polls was the verdict
of the people, and the homely, honest, and kindly Lincoln was
commissioned to bring the war to a conclusion and then to reconstruct
the Union.

The South observed movements in the North now with hopeful, now with
regretful, scrutiny. As a desperate stroke Davis had sent Jacob Thompson
to Canada to assist in the release of Confederate prisoners and to stir
up the Sons of Liberty to rise against the Federal Government. In
October raiding parties were sent into New England, and an effort was
made to set fire to New York City in retaliation for the destruction of
Southern property by order of Federal generals. These efforts proved
abortive, perhaps adding many votes to the majority with which Lincoln
was reëlected. And when the Confederate Congress reassembled in November
the fortunes of the South were recognized as almost past remedy. Georgia
did not rise to overwhelm Sherman; the supplies painfully collected in
thousands of _dépôts_ could not be carried to Lee's army in Petersburg;
the railroads were almost useless, and starvation confronted those who
lived in the larger towns. Only a great and overwhelming victory over
Grant could save the South, and that seemed impossible when thousands of
Confederate soldiers had deserted their standards. With 40,000 men it
was not likely that Lee could raise the siege of Petersburg or capture
any large part of Grant's army of nearly 140,000.

In the hope of filling the thin ranks of the Southern armies, President
Davis recommended to Congress the enlistment of the blacks; and to
secure foreign recognition, he sent Duncan F. Kenner to Europe to offer
emancipation of the slaves. But Congress regarded these moves with
ill-concealed contempt and offered counter-solutions. Alexander
Stephens, the Vice-President, led a movement to impeach Davis. Powerful
influences in Virginia supported Stephens; in North Carolina, opposition
to the Confederate authorities had been carried so far that such a
proposal was regarded with approval. The Rhett party in South Carolina
and the Joseph E. Brown following in Georgia were all ready to follow
Stephens. A large section of public opinion had in fact been prepared in
all these States for such a plan. A committee of Congress was formed and
William C. Rives was sent to General Lee to inquire if he would take
charge of the affairs of the Confederacy as sole dictator. Lee declined
the dubious honor, and Congress, not knowing what else to do, undertook
in early January, 1865, to carry out the recommendations of the

By the end of December, 1864, General Sherman had captured Savannah, and
was ready to begin his march northward to support Grant. On the
suggestion of Montgomery Blair, father of Postmaster-General Blair, a
conference was arranged with the Federal authorities, to take place on a
United States steamer in Hampton Roads. Lincoln and Seward thus met, on
February 3, Alexander Stephens, former United States Judge Campbell, and
Senator R. M. T. Hunter, all identified with the Confederate peace
party. Satisfactory terms could not be agreed upon and the renewal of
the conflict was ordered. As the commissioners passed through the lines,
the news of their failure was conveyed to both armies, and these brave
soldiers of many campaigns, having long since learned to respect each
other, wept aloud. The failure of these negotiations confirmed Davis in
his position and he now made one more appeal to the people of the South
to save their cause by a popular uprising. Stephens and the rest lent
their support to the call; but it was all in vain, for the sands of the
Confederacy were almost run. General Sherman with 60,000 men was
marching through South Carolina. Columbia was laid in ashes on the night
of February 17, and the naked chimneys of the cotton belt from Atlanta
to middle South Carolina marked the course of the Federal army. The
people of North Carolina trembled at the approach of the victorious
enemy. Joseph E. Johnston was finally restored to the command of the
remnants of his former army and the local militia which undertook to
delay the progress of the Federal forces. Well-to-do families fled to
places of refuge; horses and cattle were driven to the best
hiding-places that could be found; the silver plate and the little gold
that remained among the people were buried under woodpiles or deserted
houses. The negroes awaited with stolid curiosity the approach of the
"Yankees," who were by this time vaguely recognized as the "deliverers";
while the poor whites were thankful that their poverty for once proved a

In February the Confederate Congress offered a certain number of slaves
their liberty on condition of their fighting for Southern independence;
but it was too late for any test of the radical policy. The new
commissioner to Europe had hardly reached London before the collapse of
his Government was seen to be imminent. The debts of the Confederate,
state, and city governments of the South had grown so rapidly that no
one knew just what they were; the armies of Lee and Johnston were forced
to forage upon the country nearest at hand. Soldiers were barefoot,
half-naked, and dispirited. Grant pressed steadily upon Lee at
Petersburg, Sheridan approached Lee's rear from Lynchburg, Virginia, and
B. F. Butler, with 40,000 men, threatened Richmond from the lower James
River. To escape the toils of the enemy, Lee decided to retreat toward
the west. Jefferson Davis received the dispatch which told of Lee's new
purpose and advised the evacuation of the capital about noon on April 2.
It was Sunday, and the people were at church. Rapidly the fateful news
spread. An indescribable scene followed. Men, women, and children
hastened out of the doomed city with the little clothing they could
carry in their hands, or begged the owners of carts and wagons to come
to their assistance. Thousands thus sought to escape the avenger, while
the high officials of the Government and their families went away on the
last train. Documents, private correspondence, stores of all sorts,
tobacco, and other property were burned to prevent their falling into
the hands of the hated enemy. Early Monday morning the city was deserted
save by certain hangers-on, men and women, white and black, who hoped to
pick up something from the wreckage of their neighbors' fortunes. The
local government ordered the thousands of barrels of whiskey, still in
the bar-rooms, emptied into the streets. People drank from the gutters,
and drunkenness soon added to the difficulties of the situation. Federal
troops entered the city, already in flames, and before nine o'clock the
Union colors flew from the flagpole of the ancient capital of Virginia.

[Illustration: Map of regions which surrendered with Lee and Johnston
April 1865]

Davis and his Cabinet escaped to Danville, Virginia, where they remained
until the news of Lee's surrender at Appomattox reached them on April
10, when they retreated toward Charlotte, North Carolina. Lee had seen
the inevitable, and on April 9, near the little village of Appomattox,
he asked Grant for terms. The Union commander was generous, and allowed
the 28,000 heroic Confederates to return to their homes, giving only
their word of honor that they would keep the peace in the future. A few
days later near Durham, North Carolina, Johnston surrendered to Sherman
on similar terms to those which Grant had given Lee. The President and
members of the defunct government of the Confederate States of America
hastened on to Georgia, where Davis was captured on May 10 and sent to
Fortress Monroe as a state prisoner. Other forces of the South,
scattered over the wide area of their desolate country, surrendered
during the month of May; and most people turned to cultivation of their
crops in the hope that a bountiful nature might restore somewhat their
broken fortunes. The bitter cup had been drained. The cause of the
planters had gone down in irretrievable disaster. For forty years they
had contended with their rivals of the North, and having staked all on
the wager of battle they had lost. Just four years before they had
entered with unsurpassed zeal and enthusiasm upon the gigantic task of
winning their independence. They had made the greatest fight in history
up to that time, lost the flower of their manhood and wealth untold.
They now renewed once and for all time their allegiance to the Union
which had up to that time been an experiment, a government of uncertain
powers. More than three hundred thousand lives and not less than four
billions of dollars had been sacrificed in the fight of the South. The
planter culture, the semi-feudalism of the "old South," was annihilated,
while the industrial and financial system of the East was triumphant.
The cost to the North had been six hundred thousand lives and an expense
to the governments, state and national, of at least five billion
dollars. But the East was the mistress of the United States, and the
social and economic ideals of that section were to be stamped
permanently upon the country.


J. K. Hosmer, _The Outcome of the Civil War_ (1900), in _American
Nation_ Series; J. A. Woodburn, _The Life of Thaddeus Stevens_ (1913);
E. P. Oberholtzer, _Jay Cooke, Financier of the Civil War_ (1907); J. C.
Schwab, _The Confederate States, A Financial and Industrial History_
(1901); E. D. Fite, _Social and Industrial Conditions in the North
During the Civil War_ (1910), W. F. Fox, _Regimental Losses in the
American Civil War_ (1889).

Of special sectional value is W. D. Foulke's _The Life of Oliver P.
Morton_ (1899). Henry Wilson's _The Rise and Fall of the Slave Power_
(1872-77); A. H. Stephens's _A Constitutional View of the Late War
Between the States_ (1868-70) are typical of many others. Some of the
best writers on the life and ideals of the old South are Mrs. Roger A.
Pryor, _Reminiscences of Peace and War_ (1906), and _My Day_ (1911);
Mrs. James Chesnut, _A Diary from Dixie_ (1905); Mrs. Clement C. Clay,
_A Belle of the Sixties_ (1904); and Mrs. Myrta L. Avery, _Dixie after
the War_ (1906). Mrs. Jefferson Davis's _A Memoir of Jefferson Davis_
(1890) is rather personal and profuse, but always more important than
the more pretentious work of her husband, Jefferson Davis, in his _Rise
and Fall of the Confederate Government_, already mentioned.

A rare source book for the South is J. B. Jones's _A Rebel War Clerk's
Diary_ (1866), and an even more important one for the North is Gideon
Welles's _Diary_ (1911). Edward McPherson's _Political History of the
United States During the Great Rebellion_ (1865); William McDonald's
_Select Statutes and Other Documents Illustrative of the History of the
United States, 1861-98_ (1903); J. D. Richardson's _Compilation of the
Messages and Papers of the Confederacy_ (1905); and _Appleton's Annual
Cyclopedia and Register, 1862-1903_, give the most important official
documents and full accounts of public events as they occurred.


Abolitionists, societies started 163;
  theories and aims, 164;
  petitions in House, 165;
  preparing for Republican party, 166;
  more in politics, 170;
  and Wilmot Proviso, 170;
  in 1850, 176.

Adams, Charles Francis, fears English intervention, 314, 315, 316.

Adams, John, 19.

Adams, John Quincy, coalition with Clay, 1, 2, 3, 4;
  support in 1828, 14, 15, 17;
  popular and electoral votes, 18;
  unpopular in Southwest, 21;
  and Georgia, 21, 39, 55, 56;
  in House, 66;
  for Bank, 68, 70, 72, 74, 84;
  attacking Van Buren, 96-105, 107, 108, 109;
  and petitions on slavery, 119, 126;
  for secession, 127, 164, 165;
  denounces Mexican War, 157;
  anti-slavery leader, 164;
  address on taxes, 167, 242, 252.

Agassiz, Alexander, 225.

Agassiz, Louis, naturalist, 225.

Agriculture, methods of, 211.

Alabama, and Indians, 8;
  immigration to, 13;
  population (1830, 1840), 13, 90;
  for Jackson, 72;
  being filled up, 89, 90;
  for Van Buren, 111;
  "Slavery a blessing," 119;
  and Wilmot Proviso, 171, 264;
  secession of, 271.

_Albany Journal_, friendly to Confederacy, 272.

Alcott, Amos Bronson, 225.

Alien and Sedition Laws, 161.

Allen, William, friendly to Calhoun, 120;
  expansionist, 149.

Allston, sculptor, 54.

Amendments, on presidential term, appointment of members of Congress,
 limiting Supreme Court, 16.

American Fur Company, 35.

American National Academy of Science, 225.

American party. _See_ Know-Nothing party.

American Revolution, 47, 84;
  debt paid, 99.

American System, Clay's, 67, 74, 109;
  to be carried out, 114;
  laid aside, 145.

Anderson, Major Robert, commanding at Fort Sumter, 273.

Andrew, Governor, of Massachusetts, supports Lincoln, 322.

Antietam, battle of, 302.

Appomattox, Lee surrenders at, 327.

Arkansas, in cotton belt, 12;
  for Van Buren, 111;
  for Pacific Railroad, 233;
  secession of, 275.

Art, American, in 1860, 225.

Ashburton, Lord, Minister to United States, 123;
  Webster-Ashburton Treaty, 123, 124, 125.

Astor, John Jacob, fur trade, 35.

Atchison, David, expansionist, 150;
  pro-slavery leader, 238.

_Atlantic Monthly_, founded, 227.

Austin, Stephen, in Texas, 120.

Bache, Alexander Dallas, scientist, 224.

Baldwin, Joseph G., 227.

Baltimore, Maryland, for Adams, 15, 41, 46, 48;
  newspapers for Bank, 79;
  Democratic Convention of 1844, 128;
  wheat market, 133;
  sub-treasury at, 151;
  Democratic Convention of 1848, 172, 187.

Baltimore and Ohio Canal, 46.

Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, 192.

Bancroft, George, in Polk's Cabinet, 149.

Bank, Second National, 45;
  and Jackson, 60, 65, 66, 67;
  and Clay, 67;
  bill for re-charter, 67;
  Biddle, president, 67;
  sentiment for re-charter, 68;
  Jackson's veto, 69;
  in campaign of 1832, 70;
  and Jackson, 77;
  creditor of members of Congress, 78;
  newspaper support of, 79;
  government deposits withheld, 79;
  fighting Jackson and the people, 80;
  defeated, 82;
  decline in power, 83;
  and French claims, 85;
  out of politics, 91;
  under Pennsylvania charter, 98;
  European stockholders, 99, 103, 107.

Banks, in United States, capital, 45;
  men in control, 47;
  banking area, 47;
  state banks and Jackson, 78, 79;
  expansion of credit, 98;
  increase of members, 98;
  panic of 1837, 102;
  suspend specie payment, 102;
  New York laws, 105;
  state, 151;
  of New York, 189;
  of Confederacy, 286.

Banks, N. P., 253, 299.

Baptists, in West, 33;
  in South, 143;
  and slavery, 143, 163;
  increase in membership, 145;
  in South, 218;
  clergy of high character, 220;
  members (1860), 220;
  and slavery, 221;
  educational institutions, 222.

Barbecues, 209, 212.

Barbour, James, 17.

Baring Brothers of London, and American stocks, 99.

Barry, W. T., Postmaster-General, 58.

Bates, Edward, presidential timber, 257, 262, 263.

Beauregard, General P. G. T., and Fort Sumter, 274, 276, 281;
  in battle of Bull Run, 285;
  in battle of Shiloh, 294.

Beecher, Henry Ward, 219.

Bell, John, for President, 261.

Belmont, August, 258.

Benton, Thomas H., against Adams, 16;
  for preëmption law, 16, 60, 65;
  against Florida Treaty, 16;
  imperialist, 25;
  for free homesteads, 27, 30, 32;
  Foot Resolution, 60;
  land program defeated, 65, 75, 82, 90, 102, 105, 108, 109;
  supporting Tyler, 115, 126;
  Oregon, 127, 129;
  Texas and Oregon, 132, 147, 149, 150;
  for commander-in-chief in Mexico, 155;
  and California, 175;
  and crisis of 1850, 175, 242.

Berrien, John M., Attorney-General, 58.

Biddle, Nicholas, president of Second National Bank, 67, 70;
  and Jackson, 77;
  policy for Bank, 78;
  control of politicians and newspapers, 78;
  fighting Jackson and people, 79;
  defeated, 82;
  policy changed, 83, 112.

Birney, James G., anti-slavery worker, 119, 161.

Black Hawk, 87.

Black Warrior, trouble with Spain, 234.

Blair, Frank P., 58.

Blair, Montgomery, 324.

Bonds, United States, 291, 293;
  Confederate in Europe, 293.

Border States, Republican party, 302.

Boston, financial center, 45, 46, 48;
  shipping and Hayne, 48;
  Transcendental Club, 52;
  philosophy and religious reform, 52, 84, 129;
  alliance with South, 162, 193, 202, 205;
  clergy and slavery, 222.

Bragg, General Braxton, in battle of Shiloh, 294;
  in Kentucky, 295, 300;
  battle of Murfreesboro, 295;
  withdraws to Chattanooga, 295, 303;
  reinforced, 307;
  beats Rosecrans, 307;
  character, 307.

Branch, John, Secretary of the Navy, 58.

Breckinridge, John C., for Vice-President, 245;
  for President, 261.

Breese, Sidney, friend of Calhoun, 120.

Brinkerhoff, Jacob, and Wilmot Proviso, 169.

Brooks, Preston, assault on Sumner, 245.

Brown, John, in Kansas, 249;
  raid into Virginia, 258;
  capture and execution, 259.

Brown, Governor, Joseph E., of Georgia, distrusted by Confederates, 309;
  opposed to Davis, 312, 324.

Bryant, William Cullen, and New York _Evening Post_, 53;
  against Lincoln, 320.

Buchanan, James, Secretary of State, 148;
  and Oregon, 149;
  for all Mexico, 157;
  Minister to England, 234;
  Ostend Manifesto, 235;
  Democratic nominee for President, 245;
  elected, 246;
  slights Douglas, 247;
  Mexico and Cuba, 247;
  Kansas question, 249;
  Lecompton Constitution, 253;
  Douglas opposes, 253;
  opposes Douglas, 256, 265, 268;
  and secession, 270.

Buell, Don C., at Louisville, 284;
  in battle of Shiloh, 294;
  across Tennessee, 294;
  opening the Mississippi, 294.

Buena Vista, battle of, 155.

Bull Run, first battle of, 285;
  second battle of, 300.

Burnside, Ambrose E., given command of the Army of the Potomac, 303;
  loses at Fredericksburg, 303;
  resignation, 303.

Business, prosperous in North during Civil War, 292.

Butler, General B. F., 318, 326.

Butler, Pierce, abused by Sumner, 245.

Calhoun, John C., 4, 5;
  Nationalist, 5;
  Pennsylvania and, 5;
  against tariff, 6, 66, 68;
  alliance with Jackson, 6;
  strong in Virginia, 11, 16;
  and Jackson's first Cabinet, 21;
  true to West, 30;
  powerless against Jackson, 37, 39, 52, 54, 58, 60, 61, 62;
  break with Jackson, 63, 64, 67;
  and Van Buren, 64, 68;
  defied by Clay, 67;
  and Bank, 68, 82;
  Nullification, 71, 72, 75;
  isolated in 1832, 73;
  and compromise of 1833, 74;
  and Force Bill, 74;
  defeated and isolated, 82, 84, 91;
  hostile to Jackson, 92;
  supporting Van Buren, 94, 108, 112;
  for Independent Treasury, 104;
  for Texas, 105, 107, 121, 126, 147;
  supporting Tyler, 115, 116;
  retirement, 117;
  and Clay reconciled, 117;
  candidacy for President, 117;
  on slavery, 119;
  character, 119;
  Secretary of State, 127;
  and Walker, 129;
  for Polk, 130;
  Texas Treaty, 130;
  Presidency promised to, 131, 132;
  Unitarian, 143;
  and sectionalism, 145;
  and Polk, 148;
  and Oregon, 149, 150, 152;
  and all Mexico, 158;
  and abolition agitation, 165;
  and compromise of 1850, 176, 178;
  demands for slavery, 178;
  death, 180, 242, 243;
  doctrine of, and Dred Scott case, 248, 263.

California, Tyler for, 125, 131, 132, 152, 154;
  occupied by United States, 154;
  gold discovered, 174;
  Taylor for admitting, 176, 199, 232;
  for Pacific Railroad, 233;
  for Buchanan, 246.

Cameron, Simon, 257, 262, 263.

Campbell, Judge, of Alabama, Confederate Commissioner, 324.

Campbellites, Calvinistic, 218, 222.

Canada, revolt and American aid, 105, 120, 122, 153.

Canals, constructed in West, 90;
  speculation, 91, 92.

Carey and Lea, Philadelphia, publishing activities, 53.

Caroline, the, affair of, with England, 105, 120, 123.

Cartwright, Peter, salary, 31.

Cass, Lewis, 15, 25;
  Secretary of War, 65;
  Oregon and Texas, 132;
  expansionist, 150, 157, 158;
  for President, 172;
  Nicholson letter, 172;
  defeat, 173;
  and crisis of 1850, 176.

Catholics, 216;
  and slavery, 221.

Cerro Gordo, battle of, 155.

Chancellorsville, battle of, 305.

Chandler, Zachary, 241;
  uncompromising, 273.

Channing, William Ellery, 52.

Charleston, S.C., 53, 54;
  and abolition mail, 165;
  spring resort, 214;
  blockade-running from, 313.

Chase, Salmon P., for Wilmot Proviso, 171, 184, 202;
  against Kansas-Nebraska Bill, 240, 241, 242;
  and Kansas, 245;
  and Ohio, 251, 257, 262, 265;
  uncompromising, 273;
  Secretary of Treasury, 291;
  difficulties, 292;
  for immediate emancipation, 301, 315;
  working against Lincoln, 316;
  supports Lincoln, 322.

Cherokees. _See_ Indians.

Chesapeake and Ohio Canal, 46.

Chestnut, Mrs. James, 215, 281.

Chicago, 187, 192, 193, 202;
  and Douglas, 204;
  growth, 204;
  Pacific Railroad idea, 204, 210.

Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad, 192.

Chickasaws. _See_ Indians.

Children, in factories, 210.

China, Tyler and, 126.

Choate, Rufus, became Democrat, 246.

Choctaws. _See_ Indians.

Christian Church. _See_ Campbellites.

Churches, support, 50;
  strictness moderated, 50, 143;
  and slavery, 143, 146, 163;
  members and capacity, in 1860, 220;
  of South, for slavery and war, 278.

Churubusco, battle of, 156.

Cincinnati, pork-packing and manufacturing, 35, 202, 210.

Cities, wretched industrial life, 210.

Civil service, Van Buren and spoils system, 96.

Clay, Henry, coalition with Adams, 2;
  Secretary of State, 3, 14, 15, 16, 17, 21;
  barely reëlected to the Senate in 1831, 22;
  fast life, 22;
  duelist, 32, 33;
  Mechanic's Library, 35;
  powerless against Jackson, 37, 55, 56, 62, 63, 64, 76;
  defies South, 66;
  and Bank, 67, 70, 79;
  for Presidency, 67, 69;
  and Jackson's Bank Veto, 70;
  and Kentucky, 70, 71;
  and Compromise of 1833, 73, 74, 75;
  alliance with Calhoun, 74;
  debtor of Bank, 79, 80;
  fight to restore deposits, 81, 82, 84, 91;
  for distribution of surplus, 92, 93;
  attacking Van Buren, 96, 107;
  and Texas, 105, 127;
  Eastern tour, 108, 109;
  not nominated, 101, 112;
  program, 114;
  and Tyler, 115;
  retirement in 1841, 117;
  reconciled to Calhoun, 117;
  candidacy for Presidency, 117;
  Raleigh letter, 128;
  and Polk, 130, 145, 147, 152;
  on Mexican Treaty, 157, 167;
  snubbed, 171, 172;
  in Senate, 176;
  Compromise of 1850, 176;
  death, 181, 242.

Clayton-Bulwer Treaty, 173.

Cobb, Howell, adviser of Buchanan, 247.

Colleges, in West, 34.

Colorado, 199.

Columbia Valley, immigration to, 127.

Confederacy, Southern organized, 271;
  agents to Europe, 276;
  enthusiasm, 276;
  preparations for war, 276;
  aristocracy united, 279;
  Richmond capital, 280;
  expects foreign intervention, 282;
  currency and finances, 286;
  need of European market, 286;
  regular government, 286;
  dissension, 287;
  bonds in Europe, 294;
  European recognition, imminent, 301;
  not ready for reunion, 309;
  debt and currency in 1864, 310;
  taxation, 310;
  internal dissension, 310;
  resistance to conscript laws, 311;
  area controlled in 1854, 313;
  credit ruined in Europe, 315;
  collapse, 324-28.

Congregational Church, in Massachusetts, 15;
  members in 1860, 220;
  and abolition, 222;
  Yale, a center, 222.

Connecticut, suffrage extended, Church and State separated, 14;
  population, 39;
  cotton and wool manufacturing, 42, 54.

Conscription, Federal and Confederate, 305;
  resistance to Confederate, 311;
  opposition to Federal, 317.

Constitution of the United States, amendments to limit term of
 Presidents, appointment of members of Congress, and powers of Supreme
 Court, 16;
  States and bills of credit, 99.

Cooper, General A. S., 281.

Cooper, James Fenimore, 53.

Cooper, Thomas, resignation, 142.

Cotton, and politics in South Carolina, 4;
  planters against tariff, 5, 66, 75;
  expansion and politics, 11;
  decline in price, 12;
  great wealth of planters, 13;
  in Southwest, 13;
  exports, 29, 36, 42, 313;
  New Orleans market, 36;
  manufacture in New England, 42, 46, 132, 133, 134, 137, 138;
  prices, 186, 194.

Courts, for vested interests, 51;
  national, power of, 51;
  county in old South, 38;
  planters in federal, 138.

Crawford, Thomas, sculptor, 225.

Crawford, William H., Jackson and Seminole affair, 2, 4, 8, 64.

Creeks. _See_ Indians.

Crittenden, John J., 171, 255, 273.

Crockett, David, 79.

Cuba, 198;
  purchase proposed, 232, 233;
  Ostend Manifesto, 234, 247.

Currency. _See_ Money, Paper money.

Cushing, Caleb, 50, 150;
  Attorney-General, 231.

Dallas, George M., for Vice-President, 130;
  elected, 131.

Dana, R. H., secession, 253.

Daniel, John M., opposed to Davis, 312.

Davis, Jefferson, Oregon, Texas, 132;
  expansionist, 150, 157, 176;
  retired after 1850, 181, 214;
  Secretary of War, 231;
  and Pacific Railroad, 233, 234, 236;
  for Kansas-Nebraska Bill, 239;
  Senate leader, 247;
  and Douglas, 254, 258;
  against secession, 269;
  President of Confederacy, 271;
  and Fort Sumter, 274;
  advice to plant food crops, 282;
  "second Washington," 282, 285;
  reëlected, 286;
  and J. E. Johnston, 287;
  trust in Lee, 298;
  unyielding, 309;
  opposition to, 312, 315, 322;
  recommends negro enlistment, 323;
  opposed by Congress, 323;
  impeachment threatened, 323;
  offers Europe emancipation, 323;
  last appeal to South, 324;
  escape to Danville, 327;
  captured and imprisoned, 328.

Declaration of Independence, and Jacksonians, 24;
  and New England, 24;
  in Democratic platform of 1840, 110;
  abolitionists and, 162, 262.

Delaware, for Adams, 14, 18.

Democracy, decline, 3;
  doomed in Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, 11;
  retarded by cotton expansion, 11;
  Whigs and Democrats, 109;
  flooded in South, 214;
  in New England, 215.

Democratic party, 67;
  defied by Clay, 66;
  first national convention, 68;
  and Van Buren, 104, 107, 109, 110;
  Baltimore Convention of 1844, 129;
  for Texas, 147, 161;
  convention of 1848, 172, 182;
  Franklin Pierce, 182;
  compromise a finality, 182;
  lose Northwest, 242;
  Southern, and pro-slavery, 243;
  Convention of 1856, 245;
  Buchanan and Breckinridge, 205;
  and Douglas, 257, 258;
  Charleston Convention of 1860, 260;
  split, 261;
  wins seven Republican States, 302;
  strong in North, 317;
  Convention of 1864, 321.

Derby Bank, of Connecticut, robs depositors, 44.

De Veaux, James, painter, 54.

Dew, Thomas R., on slavery, 118, 145.

Dickinson, Daniel S., Lincoln leader, 290.

District of Columbia, petitions on slavery in, 165;
  to abolish slave-trading, 178.

Dix, John A., 150, 157.

Doak, Samuel, 33.

Dobbin, James C., Secretary of Navy, 232.

Donaldson, Fort, Grant captures, 293.

Douglas, Stephen A., Oregon and Texas, 132;
  expansionists, 150, 172;
  and crisis of 1850, 176, 206;
  understood West, 202;
  land for railroads, 203;
  and Chicago, 203;
  ambitious, 205;
  wife, 214;
  slighted by
  Pierce, 232;
  Kansas-Nebraska Bill, 236;
  attacked, 240;
  Southern Whigs defend, 240;
  abused by Sumner, 245;
  for Buchanan, 246;
  Greeley suggests for President, 251;
  revolt on Kansas, 253;
  read out of Democratic party, 254;
  campaigning in Illinois, 254;
  popularity, 255;
  and Republicans, 255;
  debate with Lincoln, 256;
  Freeport doctrine, 256;
  reëlected, 257;
  and Democrats, 258;
  and Charleston Convention, 260;
  nominated by faction, 261;
  strength in Northwest, 264;
  against secession, 264;
  popular and electoral vote, 265;
  for peace, 273;
  supports Lincoln, 282, 289;
  death, 289.

Douglass, Frederick, ex-slave and abolitionist, 166.

Draper and Moss, photographers, 224.

Dred Scott decision, 247, 257.

Duane, William J., Secretary of the Treasury, 78;
  dismissed, 79.

East, 4;
  and democracy, 37, 39;
  emigration to West, 40;
  population, 40, 47, 185;
  lands, 41;
  product and return on capital, 42;
  factory life, 43;
  capitalists, 44, 46, 47, 48, 54;
  banks and circulation, 45, 46;
  factories in, 47;
  clergy and lawyers, 50;
  judges for property interests, 51;
  life in, being reconstructed, 54, 55;
  for protection, 59, 60;
  and public land questions, 61;
  antagonistic to South, 61;
  and West, 61;
  defeats Benton's land program, 65;
  and Clay, 67;
  Jackson and Bank, 69;
  and Union, 75;
  distrusts Van Buren, 96;
  and panic of 1837, 102, 108, 130, 161;
  and Texas, 167;
  cities of, for Compromise of 1850, 181;
  foreign element in, 185;
  population in 1830, in 1850, in 1860, 185;
  industrial area, 187;
  shipping tonnage, 187;
  capital concentrated in, 188;
  capital and income, 194;
  trade with West and South, 205;
  religious life, 218;
  school children, 223;
  college students, 224;
  and Northwest, 247, 263;
  motives of, in the Civil War, 289;
  for emancipation, 304;
  radicals of, hostile to Lincoln, 317;
  in control after war, 328.

Eaton, John H., Secretary of War, 58;
  wife and Washington Society, 59, 64.

Education, in United States, 1850-60, 213.

Eleventh Amendment, and repudiation of state debts, 106.

Emancipation Proclamation, promised, 302;
  opinion on, divided, 304;
  East for, West against, 304.

Emerson, Ralph Waldo, 52, 226;
  on John Brown, 259.

England, Oregon, 25, 27, 122, 152;
  United States and West Indian trade, 84;
  mediates between France and United States, 87;
  capital for United States, 99, 100;
  call for payment, 101;
  Mexico and Lower California, 122;
  strained relations with United States, 122;
  the Webster-Ashburton treaty, 123;
  slave trade and right of search, 123;
  Northwestern boundary, 124;
  Oregon, 124, 132, 147, 149;
  free-trade movement, 151;
  Oregon trade, 153;
  compensated owners for emancipation of slaves, 164;
  Clayton-Bulwer Treaty, 173, 205;
  possibility of intervention by, in Civil War, 314.

English, in United States, 185;
  attitude toward Confederacy, 314.

Episcopalians, and slavery, 145, 216, 240.

Erie Canal, exports of grain, 29, 32, 35, 46, 90, 97;
  and European capital, 99.

Erie Railroad, 192.

Everett, Edward, 50;
  Minister to England, 126;
  Massachusetts spokesman, 184;
  becomes Democrat, 246;
  for Vice-President, 261.

Exports, cotton and other, 12;
  cotton from Confederacy, 313.

Factory system, introduced, 43;
  long hours and poor pay, 219.

Fair Oaks, battle of, 296.

Farm laborers, 210.

Farm life, 211;
  methods, 211.

Federalists, in South Carolina, 5;
  of New York and Pennsylvania, 14;
  shipping interests, 41.

Fillmore, Millard, President, 180;
  Know-Nothing candidate, 243;
  popular vote, 243.

Florida, 120;
  secession of, 271, 313.

Floyd, John, 70.

Floyd, John B., dismissed from army, 312.

Food, of Americans in 1860, 208.

Foot, Samuel A., 30;
  resolution on public lands, 60.

Foote, Commodore, on Mississippi River, 293.

Foote, Henry S., for "all of Mexico," 158;
  Compromise of 1850, 178.

Forbes, John M., railroad builder, 192.

Force Bill, 73, 77.

Forsyth, John, Jackson leader in the Senate, 82.

France, claims against, 85;
  threatens war, 86;
  and tariff, 151, 201;
  and South, 315;
  and Mexico, 315.

Fredericksburg, battle of, 303;
  and English intervention, 314.

Free negroes, in South, 138.

Freeport doctrine, 256.

Free-Soil party, 173;
  supports Pierce, 182, 184, 241.

Frémont, John C., in Mexican War, 154;
  Senator, 175;
  for President, 246;
  commander at St. Louis, 284;
  removed from command, 290, 299;
  for President, 320.

Friends. _See_ Quakers.

Fugitive Slave Law, strengthened in 1850, 178;
  opposition to, 184;
  nullified by Northern States, 252.

Fuller, Margaret, 226.

Fur trade, St. Louis a center, 35;
  American Fur Company, 35.

Gadsden, James, United States agent to Mexico, 232.

Gallatin, Albert, turned against Bank, 83.

Garrison, William Lloyd, abolitionist, 161;
  _Liberator_, 161;
  abolition societies, 162;
  for unconditional abolition, 164.

Georgia, 3;
  university of, 7;
  trouble over Indians, 7, 8, 21, 72, 87;
  immigration to, 13, 21, 28;
  Cherokee Nation against, 88, 121;
  illiterates, 213;
  convicts, 213;
  Know-Nothings defeated in, 243;
  secession of, 271;
  Union areas, 279;
  distrusted by Confederacy, 309;
  conscript laws annulled, 312, 323.

Germans, immigration to Mississippi Valley, 91;
  elect Lincoln, 264.

Germany, and tariff, 151.

Giddings, J. R., anti-slavery leader, 163, 262.

Gilmore, Thomas W., 121, 132.

Gladstone, W. E., favors South, 314.

Graft, in Van Buren's administration, 96.

Grain, exported by West, 29, 35;
  machinery invented, 199;
  railroads and, 199.

Grant, U. S., campaign in Tennessee, 293;
  wins battle of Shiloh, 294;
  made Halleck famous, 300;
  blocked in Mississippi, 303;
  commander in East, 316;
  Wilderness campaign, 317;
  failure and criticism of, 318;
  crosses the James, 318;
  invests Petersburg, 318, 326;
  liberal terms to Lee, 327.

Great Britain, and American shipping, 187.

Greeley, Horace, 171;
  proposes Douglas for President, 251;
  and Chicago Convention, 262, 263;
  against Lincoln, 320;
  supports Lincoln, 322.

Green, Duff, editor of the _Telegraph_, 17;
  attacks Adams, 17.

Greenbacks, issued, 292, 293;
  unpopular, 304;
  more issued, 305.

Grimes, J. W., 241.

Grimké, the Misses, abolitionists, 166.

Guadalupe-Hidalgo, Treaty of, 174.

Gulf States, immigration to, 13;
  value of exports, 29, 141;
  Union areas, 278.

Guthrie, James, Secretary of the Treasury, 232.

_Habeas corpus_, writ of, suspended, 304.

Halleck, General H. W., Grant makes famous, 300;
  command in East, 300.

Hamilton, Alexander, 44.

Hamilton, James, 71.

Hammond, James H., on slavery, 146.

Hampton, Wade, 214.

Hannegan, and Calhoun, 120;
  for taking Canada, 158.

Harper's Ferry, John Brown, 259, 301.

_Harper's Magazine_, 228.

Harris, Townsend, consul to Japan, 235.

Harrison, William Henry, Whig candidate, 93, 110;
  elected, 111;
  and Clay, 114;
  death, 115.

Hart, Joel T., sculptor, 54.

Harvard, Unitarian center, 52;
  confers degree of LL.D. on Jackson, 58;
  Southern students at, 224.

Hawthorne, Nathaniel, 182;
  struggling, 226.

Hayne, Paul Hamilton, 227.

Hayne, Robert Y., 5, 6, 30, 48, 52;
  debate with Webster, 61, 63, 64;
  nullification, 71.

Henry, Fort, Grant captures, 293.

Hill, General A. P., 299.

Hill, General D. H., 299;
  loses orders, 301.

Hodge, Dr. Charles, president of Princeton, 222.

Hoe, Richard M., inventor, 224.

Holden, W. W., leads peace movement, 312.

Holmes, Oliver Wendell, 226.

Homesteads, free, in Republican platform, 262.

Hood, General John B., defeated by Sherman, 319;
  to Nashville, 319.

Hooker, General Joseph, given command of the Army of the Potomac, 303;
  loses at Chancellorsville, 305.

Horseshoe Bend, battle of, 21.

Houston, Samuel, in Texas, 120;
  Governor of Texas, 126.

Howe, Elias, inventor of sewing machine, 224.

Hunter, R. M. T., 324.

Hunt, William Morris, 225.

Illinois, 3;
  for Jackson, 22;
  population, 28, 87, 89, 90;
  internal improvements, 90;
  Germans in, 91;
  capital from New York and London, 91;
  debt and income, 98;
  for Van Buren, 111, 113;
  Oregon and Texas, 122, 131;
  Indians removed, 199, 201, 205;
  convicts in 1860, 213;
  educational reform, 223;
  for opening Nebraska, 238;
  North for Republicans, 241;
  for Buchanan, 246, 262, 263;
  Democratic, 302.

Illinois Central Railroad, built, 204.

Immigration, 40, 212.

Independent Treasury, proposed, 103;
  contested, 104;
  established, 104, 107, 108, 109;
  law repealed, 115;
  reënacted, 149.

Indian Territory, 89.

Indiana, for Jackson, 22;
  population, 90;
  internal improvements, 90;
  capital from New York and London, 91, 113;
  Indians removed, 199, 201;
  illiterates, 213;
  educational reform, 223;
  for opening Nebraska, 238;
  North for Republicans, 241;
  for Buchanan, 246, 262;
  Democratic, 302.

Indians, Creeks, 1, 2, 26;
  removal desired, 29;
  and Georgia, 72;
  removal by Jackson, 87, 88;
  Cherokee Nation against Georgia, 88;
  Seminole War, 104.

Ingham, Samuel D., 14, 17;
  Secretary of the Treasury, 58.

Internal improvements, West for, 28, 59;
  Carey and Lea pamphlets, 53, 55;
  Maysville veto, 63, 65;
  and Whigs, 110, 130;
  extending slavery, 141, 150, 152;
  and Wilmot Proviso, 170.

Inventions, 199, 212, 224.

Iowa, 87, 89, 90, 106;
  made State, 198;
  Indians removed, 199, 201, 205;
  for opening Nebraska, 238, 264.

Irish, in United States, 185.

Irving, Washington, 52.

Jackson, Andrew, early life, 1;
  candidate for President, 2, 4;
  tariff views, 6;
  and Calhoun, 6;
  and Indians, 8, 18;
  and North Carolina, 9;
  and Virginia, 11, 14;
  campaign managers, 16, 17, 18;
  skillful politician, 18;
  inauguration, 20, 21;
  supplants Clay in West, 21, 22;
  planters distrust, 23, 24, 25, 27, 28;
  duelist, 32;
  "Old Hickory," 36, 37;
  Western opposition, 37;
  "King Andrew I," 37;
  Eastern distrust, 39;
  first Cabinet, 56, 58;
  degree of LL.D. from Harvard, 58;
  party divided, 58, 59;
  Cabinets, 58;
  "Kitchen Cabinet," 58;
  removals by, 58;
  appointments by, 58, 59;
  Eaton affair, 59;
  and tariff, 59;
  and Foot Resolution, 60;
  and Bank, 60, 65, 66, 67, 68, 77, 80;
  for second term, 62;
  Van Buren and Calhoun, 62;
  Union toast, 62;
  Maysville veto, 63;
  break with Calhoun, 64;
  Cabinet changed, 64;
  platform unfulfilled, 65;
  and South Carolina, 69, 71, 72, 73;
  Bank veto, 69;
  campaign of 1832, 70, 71, 72;
  Georgia and the Indians, 72;
  Nullification Proclamation and Force Bill, 73;
  Verplanck Tariff Bill, 73;
  messages, 76;
  defeated on tariff, 79;
  Bank war on, 80;
  Bank defeated, 82, 84;
  diplomatic relations, West Indian trade, 84;
  French spoliation claims, 85;
  Senate opposition, 86;
  House support, 86;
  war threatened, 86;
  peaceful settlement, 87;
  removal of Indians, 87, 89, 90;
  successes, 91, 92;
  Distribution Bill vetoed, 92;
  deposit with States, 92;
  railroads, 92;
  Specie Circular, 92;
  revolts against, 92, 93;
  triumphant retirement, 94;
  and Van Buren, 96, 97, 98, 100, 103;
  and Texas, 105, 107, 108, 109, 111;
  repudiated in 1840, 112, 117, 120, 127, 144;
  and abolition mail, 165, 187, 242, 265;
  denounces secession, 268.

Jackson, Thomas J. ("Stonewall"), at Bull Run, 285;
  Valley campaign, 296;
  reinforces Lee, 297;
  failures in Peninsula campaign, 297, 299;
  sent against Pope, 299;
  Cedar Mountain, 299, 301;
  death, 305.

Japan, trade relations with, 235.

Jay Treaty, 84.

Jefferson, Thomas, Jackson-like, 3, 36;
  sale of Monticello, 13, 19, 23, 50, 54, 62, 142, 167;
  and public education, 223;
  Lincoln-like, 265.

Jeffersonian party, getting aristocratic, 3, 5, 17, 30, 109, 167.

Johnson, Andrew, for Vice-President, 320.

Johnson, Richard M., rival of Clay, 22.

Johnston, Albert Sidney, made general, 276;
  battle of Shiloh, 293;
  killed, 294.

Johnston, Joseph E., made general, 276, 281;
  at Bull Run, 285;
  quarrel with Davis, 287;
  Peninsula campaign, 297;
  wounded, 296;
  in Georgia, 318, 319;
  removed from command, 319;
  restored to command, 325;
  surrenders to Sherman, 327.

Jones, Commodore, 125.

Judd, Norman B., Republican leader, 255.

Kansas, 89, 199;
  organized as Territory, 241;
  popular sovereignty, 243;
  Topeka Convention, 244;
  two governments, 244;
  deadlock in Congress over, 244;
  war in, 248;
  Walker, Governor, 249;
  Lecompton Constitution, 249.

Kansas-Nebraska Bill, 172, 198, 235, 236;
  and Pacific Railway 238;
  provisions, 239;
  angry debate on, 240;
  passed, 240;
  resulting campaign, 241.

Kearny, Colonel S. W., campaign in New Mexico, 154.

Kendall, Amos, 58, 62.

Kennedy, John P., 53.

Kenner, Duncan F., Confederate agent to Europe, 323.

Kent, Chancellor, against universal suffrage, 14, 51.

Kentucky, 13;
  and Clay, 15, 21, 22;
  and R. M. Johnson, 22;
  population, 28, 32;
  and Jackson, 37, 40, 63, 70;
  Germans in, 91;
  "slavery a blessing," 119, 121;
  live stock to South, 141;
  Presbyterians in, 143;
  and slavery, 161;
  for Scott, 182;
  and Kansas-Nebraska Bill, 238, 246;
  secession of, prevented, 275;
  occupied by Federals, 293;
  against emancipation, 301;
  Republican party in 1862, 302;
  held by Federals, 313.

Know-Nothing party, 242;
  defeated in Virginia and Georgia, 243;
  in 1856, 243, 261, 264.

Labor unions, beginning, 209.

Laborers, conditions poor, 209.

Larkin, Thomas O., seizure of California, 154.

Lawyers, support capitalists, 50, 51;
  in South, allied with planters, 139.

Lecompton Constitution, of Kansas, 249.

Lee, Robert E., 214, 259;
  made general, 276;
  drills Virginia troops, 281;
  expected success, 282;
  home seized, 283;
  sent to West Virginia, 286;
  loses West Virginia, 296;
  in chief command, 296;
  Peninsula command, 297;
  loses at Mechanicsville, 297;
  wins at Gaines's Mills, 297;
  pursues McClellan, 297;
  loses at Malvern Hill, 297, 298;
  second Bull Run, 300;
  into Maryland, 300, 301;
  Antietam, 302;
  retires into Virginia, 302;
  wins at Fredericksburg, 303;
  wins at Chancellorsville, 305;
  second invasion of North, 305;
  Gettysburg, 306;
  retreat to Virginia, 307;
  uncompromising, 309;
  urges conscription, 311, 312;
  checks Grant, 318;
  Grant outwits, 318;
  facing Grant at Petersburg, 323;
  refuses dictatorship, 324;
  army in want, 325;
  odds against, 326;
  retreat to west, 326;
  surrender, 327.

Legaré, Hugh S., Secretary of State, 126.

Lewis, William B., 58, 62, 64.

Lexington, Kentucky, 34;
  Mechanics' Library, 35, 63.

_Liberator_, abolition weekly, 162.

Liberty party, nominates Van Buren, 173.

Lincoln, Abraham, 32, 36;
  in Republican party, 241, 242;
  against Douglas, 255;
  debate with Douglas, 256;
  "house-divided-against-itself," 256;
  Presidential timber, 257;
  Chicago Convention of 1860, 261;
  nominated for President, 263;
  character, 263, 265;
  election of, and South, 268;
  conciliatory, 269;
  inaugural, 272;
  yields to radicals, 273;
  saves Maryland, Kentucky, Missouri, 275;
  calls for volunteers, 282;
  war to preserve Union, 289;
  Douglas supports, 289;
  calls for more men, 290, 320;
  and finance, 292;
  dark hours, 300;
  promises emancipation, 302;
  arbitrary arrests, 304;
  opposition to, 304, 316;
  hope in Grant, 317;
  nominated for President by National Unionists, 320;
  asked to withdraw, 321;
  appoints day of thanksgiving, 321;
  strongly supported, 322, 324.

Literature, flower of American culture, 226.

Live stock, exported by West, 29;
  to cotton belt, 141.

Liverpool, capital of, invested in United States, 100, 205.

Livingston, Edward, Secretary of State, 65;
  Minister to France, 78;
  for Bank, 78;
  and French claims, 85.

Loco-focos, 108.

London, capital loaned to West, 91;
  in United States, 100, 205.

Longfellow, Henry W., 226.

Longstreet, A. B., 227.

Longstreet, General James, 299, 301;
  sent to Bragg, 307.

Lopez, Narcisco, 198.

Louisiana, 8;
  in cotton belt, 12, 86;
  "slavery a blessing," 119;
  secession of, 271.

Lovejoy, Elijah P., anti-slavery leader, 164;
  murdered, 166.

Lowell, James Russell, 227.

Lowndes, William, 5.

Macon, Nathaniel, in Senate, 16.

McClellan, George B., at Cincinnati, 283;
  drilling army, 293;
  Peninsula campaign, 296;
  failure, 298;
  army withdrawn, 299;
  removed from command, 299;
  popular with army, 300;
  restored to command, 301;
  Antietam, 302;
  again removed, 303;
  mentioned for President, 317;
  nominated by Democrats, 321.

McClelland, Robert, Secretary of the Interior, 232.

McCormick, Cyrus, 199, 202.

McCreary, James, 34.

McDowell, General Irvin, commanding in Virginia, 283;
  Bull Run, 285, 299.

McDuffie, George, 6;
  for Bank, 68;
  debtor of Bank, 79, 82.

McLane, Louis, Secretary of the Treasury, 65;
  Secretary of State, 78;
  for Bank, 78.

McLeod, Alexander, trial in New York, 123.

Madison, James, in Virginia Convention of 1829, 10.

Maine, 14;
  population, 39, 41, 48;
  Democratic, 55, 105;
  northeastern boundary settled, 124;
  "Aroostook War," 124, 187, 264.

Malvern Hill, battle of, 298.

Manassas, battles of. _See_ Bull Run.

Mann, Horace, and public schools, 223.

Manufacturing, Cincinnati a center, 35;
  growth in East, 1820-30, 41;
  cotton and woolen, 42;
  product and return on capital, 42;
  factory life, 43;
  men in control, 47;
  industrial area, 47, 49;
  transition from agriculture, 50;
  political power, 54, 55;
  eastern area, 187, 205.

Marcy, William L., in Polk's Cabinet, 147;
  Secretary of State, 231, 234.

Marshall, John, 10, 22, 32, 51, 99.

Marshall, Thomas, 33.

Maryland, 14, 18, 23, 40, 50;
  banking laws, 106, 133;
  internal improvements, 133;
  and slavery, 161;
  and Know-Nothings, 243, 265;
  secession prevented, 275;
  Lee in, 300;
  against emancipation, 301.

Mason, James M., 150, 215;
  commissioner to Europe, 286, 314.

Mason, John Y., in Polk's Cabinet, 149, 215;
  Minister to France, 234;
  Ostend Manifesto, 235.

Massachusetts, 3;
  conservative, 15;
  population, 39;
  cotton and wool manufacture, 42;
  bank capital and circulation, 45;
  tax valuation, 46;
  particularism and free trade to nationalism and protection, 54;
  banking laws, 106;
  for Scott, 182, 184;
  manufacturing, 187;
  shipping, 187;
  illiterates, 213;
  convicts, 213;
  and Sumner, 245;
  nullifies Fugitive Slave Law, 252.

Matamoras, battle of, 154.

Maysville Bill, 63, 64, 67.

Meade, George Gordon, given command of the Army of the Potomac, 306;
  wins at Gettysburg, 306.

Mechanics' Library of Lexington, Ky., fostered by Clay, 35.

Mechanicsville, battle of, 297.

Medill, Joseph, Republican leader, 255.

Methodists, in West, 33;
  in South, 143;
  and slavery, 143, 144, 161, 165, 221;
  increase of membership, 145;
  in South, 218;
  strength of clergy, 220;
  members, 222;
  educational institutions, 222, 223.

Mexican War, 135, 154.

Mexico, West and, 25, 27;
  and England, 122, 126, 132, 135;
  Texas boundary, 148;
  Slidell's mission to, 153;
  war with, 154;
  desire for all, 157, 161, 247.

Michigan, 22, 87;
  population, 90;
  Dutch repudiated, 106;
  Oregon and Texas, 132;
  made State, 198;
  Indians removed, 199;
  Republican party organized, 241.

Michigan Central Railroad, 192.

Middle States, 6, 13, 14;
  and Jackson, 17, 18, 22;
  labor scarce in, 30, 40;
  banks, 45;
  literature, 52, 53, 54, 55, 68, 74, 83, 84, 93;
  poor wheat crop, 101;
  Texas and Oregon, 127;
  abolition societies in, 162.

Minnesota, 87, 89;
  made State, 198;
  Indians removed, 199.

Mississippi, and Indians, 8, 87;
  and Jackson, 72;
  population, 89, 90;
  debt and income, 98;
  internal improvements, 98;
  debts of, repudiated, 106;
  "slavery a blessing," 119;
  Van Buren and Texas, 128;
  California and slavery, 175;
  secession of, 271, 313.

Mississippi River, 87;
  canal feeders, 90;
  Commodore Foote on, 293;
  held by Federals, 307.

Mississippi Valley, 2, 11, 21;
  for Texas and Oregon, 25;
  value of exports, 29, 36;
  immigration to, 90;
  Germans in, 91;
  cotton belt, 135, 198;
  growth and power, 199.

Missouri, and Clay, 21, 22;
  the bank, tariff, and internal improvements, 22;
  horse-racing, 32, 37, 40;
  Germans in, 91;
  for Van Buren, 111;
  emigration from, to Oregon, 127, 131;
  Pacific Railroad, 238;
  and Kansas-Nebraska Bill, 238;
  and Kansas, 245, 265;
  secession of, prevented, 275;
  held by Federals, 313.

Missouri Compromise, repealed, 239;
  Dred Scott decision, 247.

Missouri Valley, in plantation belt, 138.

Mobile, Ala., blockade-running from, 313;
  taken by Farragut, 321.

Mobile and Ohio Railroad, 204.

Monroe, James, in Virginia Convention of 1829, 10, 28, 89, 105.

Monroe Doctrine, France and Mexico and, 315.

Monterey, battle of, 154.

Monticello, sale of, 13.

Mormons, 176.

Morse, S. F. B., 224.

Motley, John L., 215, 228.

Murfreesboro, battle of, 295.

Napoleon III, favors South, 314, 316.

Nashville, Tenn., Federals capture, 293.

Nat Turner, slave insurrection, 118.

National Bank, 114;
  Tyler's views, 115;
  bills vetoed, 116, 130.

National debt, paid, 92.

National road, 90.

Nebraska, 199;
  organized as Territory, 241.

New England, for Adams, 14, 18;
  suffrage and Democracy in, 15, 23, 24, 28;
  hostile to West, 29, 39;
  population, 39, 40;
  growth of manufactures, 41;
  banks, 45;
  trade with South, 46;
  literature, 52, 53, 54;
  painting and sculpture, 54;
  industrial control, 55, 56;
  and tariff, 66, 67;
  and South Carolina, 72, 84;
  against Jackson, 93;
  for Harrison and Tyler, 111, 112, 125, 126;
  Oregon and Texas, 131, 140, 149;
  abolition societies, 163;
  against Fugitive Slave Law, 184;
  aristocratic life, 215;
  decline of Puritanism in, 216, 222;
  and Buchanan, 246;
  for nullification and secession, 252, 253;
  for Seward, 257;
  threats of secession, 268, 269;
  Confederate raids into, 323.

New Hampshire, 14;
  population, 39.

New Jersey, 14, 18, 302.

New Mexico, 152, 154;
  Territory of, organized, 176, 179.

New Orleans, battle of, 2, 21, 32;
  commerce, 35, 36;
  and Jackson, 37;
  failures, 101;
  sub-treasury at, 151, 193;
  winter resort, 214;
  held by Federals, 213.

New York, constitutional reform, 14;
  for Jackson, 14, 15, 18, 71;
  Western element, 28, 32, 39;
  population, 40;
  manufacturing, 42;
  banking capital and circulation, 42, 83;
  banking laws, 105, 149;
  manufacturing, 187;
  shipping, 187, 195, 200;
  Democratic, 302;
  panic at Lee's invasion, 305.

New York Central Railroad, 192.

New York City, manufacturing, 41;
  financial center, 45;
  land value, 46, 48;
  literary seat, 52;
  newspaper for Bank, 79;
  high interest, 83, 84;
  capital to West, 91, 96;
  failures, 101;
  for Walker program, 129;
  sub-treasury at, 151, 187;
  financial center, 189, 193, 194, 195, 202, 205, 209, 222;
  and Buchanan, 246, 305;
  Confederates try to burn, 323.

New York _Evening Post_, 53;
  for "all of Mexico," 156.

New York _Times_, friendly to Confederacy, 272.

New York _Tribune_, friendly to Confederacy, 272.

Nicholson letters, of Cass, 172.

Norfolk, Va., held by Federals, 313.

North, 165, 251, 259;
  devotion to Union, 269;
  opposed to war, 272;
  united for Union, 283;
  hatred of South, 284;
  danger of break-up, 289;
  prosperous, 292;
  divided counsels, 301;
  ready for reunion, 309;
  wins political control, 328;
  cost of war, 328.

_North American Review_, 52, 53.

North Carolina, declares tariff unconstitutional, 7, 8;
  East and West compromise, 8;
  unit for Jackson, 9, 12, 14, 23, 28;
  dread of West, 30, and nullification, 72;
  "slavery a blessing," 119, 121;
  tobacco belt, 132;
  cotton belt, 135, 140, 141;
  Presbyterians in, 143;
  anti-slavery, 161;
  and Compromise of 1850, 178, 264;
  Union areas, 278;
  resistance to conscription, 311;
  peace movement in, 312;
  conscript laws annulled by, 312, 313;
  opposition to Davis, 323;
  fears Sherman, 325.

Northwest, for Jackson, 22;
  radical, 23, 40;
  outstripping Southwest, 121;
  demand for Oregon, 122, 126, 140;
  internal improvements, 152;
  abolition societies, 163;
  and Polk, 169;
  Southern alliance broken, 173;
  expansion, 174, 181;
  foreign element, 185;
  population, 185;
  feared by South, 198;
  grain and meat, 199;
  capital, income, debts, 202;
  and South, 203;
  and Douglas, 203;
  land for railroads, 203;
  expansion and ambition, 204;
  and slavery, 221;
  school children, 223;
  college students, 224;
  and Pierce, 231;
  Kansas-Nebraska Bill, 236;
  clash with South, 236;
  Pacific Railroad, 238;
  and East, 242, 263;
  Lincoln and Douglas, 264;
  threatened secession, 269;
  supporting Lincoln, 282;
  against abolitionists, 301;
  hostile to Lincoln, 317.

Nova Scotia, main boundary, 124.

Nueces River, south bank seized, 148.

Nullification, formulated by Calhoun, 6;
  Hayne-Webster debate, 61;
  imminent in South Carolina, 66, 71;
  ended in South Carolina, 75.

Ogden, William B., 202.

Ohio, 15;
  canals, 35;
  and Jackson 37;
  migration to, 39;
  trade to New York, 46, 55, 71;
  internal improvements, 90;
  Germans in, 91, 119;
  Oregon and Texas, 122, 162;
  and Republicans, 241;
  Democratic, 302.

Ohio Valley, 46, 56;
  in plantation belt, 138.

Oklahoma, 89, 199.

Omnibus Bill, 180.

Oregon, and West, 25, 36;
  and Van Buren, 89;
  demand for, 122;
  boundary, 124, 125;
  Walker letter, 129;
  Democrats and, 129, 131, 152;
  Treaty, 153;
  and Wilmot Proviso, 170;
  free States, 174, 199.

Ostend Manifesto, 235.

Pacific Railroad, 204, 232, 263.

Palmer, B.M., secession sermon, 221, 278.

Panama Railroad, 192.

Panic of 1837, causes, 97, 102.

Parker, Theodore, heretical, 218.

Parson, Theophilus, great lawyer, 51.

Peace congress, 272.

Peck, John M., library, 35.

Pendleton, G.H., Democratic leader, 321.

Peninsula campaign, 296.

Pennsylvania, 3;
  and Calhoun, 5;
  protectionism, 5, 14, 17, 18;
  Western element, 28, 39, 40;
  manufacturing in, 42;
  western, 55, 71, 83, 98;
  banks, 98, 151;
  manufacturing, 187;
  shipping, 187, 201;
  illiterates, 213, 246;
  Democratic, 302;
  panic in, at Lee's invasion, 305.

Pennsylvania Railroad, 192.

Perry, Commodore, opening Japan, 235.

Philadelphia, manufacturing at, 41;
  financial center, 45, 46, 48;
  and Bank, 79;
  failures, 101;
  mint at, 151, 188, 193, 209, 222, 306.

Phillips, Wendell, abolition leader, 166.

Pierce, Franklin, for President, 182;
  inauguration, 184, 206;
  and Northwest, 231;
  program, 232;
  Pacific Railroad, 233;
  Cuba, 233;
  commercial expansion, 235;
  Eastern opposition, 235, 239.

Plantation, life in Old South, 137, 138;
  spread of system, 193.

Planters, rulers of South, 138;
  number, 139;
  and professional men, 139.

Poe, Edgar Allan, 226.

Poindexter, George, in Senate, 16;
  duelist, 32.

Polk, James K., 53;
  Speaker of House, 130;
  for President, 130;
  election and intentions, 131, 135, 140, 145;
  and Oregon, 149, 153;
  and Tariff of 1846, 151;
  vetoes Internal Improvements Bill, 152;
  sends Slidell to Mexico, 153, 155;
  and Mexican Treaty, 157;
  death, 160, 161;
  denounced by Sumner, 168;
  and Wilmot Proviso, 170;
  and Panama Canal, 174;
  and California, 175;
  recommendations, 232.

Pope, General John, given army, 299;
  battle of Cedar Mountain, 299;
  second battle of Bull Run, 300.

Popular sovereignty, 236, 255.

Population, of cotton belt, 12;
  of United States, 28, 40, 184;
  of West, 28, 40;
  of New England, 39;
  of New York, 40;
  of East, 40;
  of South, 40;
  foreign elements, 185.

Powers, Hiram, sculptor, 225.

Prentiss, Sargent, 90.

Presbyterians, in West, 33;
  in South, 142, 218;
  and slavery, 143, 145, 160;
  strong clergy, 220;
  members in 1860, 220;
  Princeton a center, 222.

Prescott, William H., 228.

President, one term demanded, 16;
  and Supreme Court, 51, 55.

Presidential campaign, of 1828, 3, 18, 19;
  of 1832, 69, 70;
  of 1836, 92;
  of 1840, 110;
  of 1844, 127;
  of 1848, 170;
  of 1852, 182;
  of 1856, 245;
  of 1860, 261.

Preston, Ballard, 171.

Preston, William C., 93.

Princeton College, Presbyterian center, 232;
  Southerners at, 224.

Pryor, General Roger A., and Fort Sumter, 275.

Public debt of United States, paid, 99.

Public education, in West, 34;
  in South, 142.

Public lands, 25, 26;
  squatters, 27;
  Benton and, 27;
  for schools, 34;
  Foot Resolution, 60;
  Preëmption Bill, 60, 89, 108;
  sales, 91, 97;
  Specie Circular, 92;
  distribution of proceeds, 114, 116;
  for railroads, 203.

Quakers, 22.

Quitman, John A., 91;
  filibustering, 198.

Railroads, speculation in West, 92;
  and Jackson, 92;
  building, 192;
  opening grain region, 199;
  of South breaking down, 310, 323.

Randolph, John, 10, 11, 15, 16, 30, 132.

Rankin, John, anti-slavery worker, 119, 161.

Reeder, Andrew, Governor of Kansas, 243.

Religion, in _ante-bellum_ South, 143;
  American, of 1860, 216.

Republican party, in Wisconsin and Michigan, 241, 242;
  Northern and anti-slavery, 243;
  platform, 246;
  and Frémont, 246, 247, 251;
  and Douglas, 255;
  and Seward, 257;
  Chicago Convention, 261, 262;
  conciliatory, 270;
  loses seven States, 302.

Repudiation of state debts, 106;
  effect on Confederacy, 316.

Revenue, of United States, exceeding expenses, 92;
  surplus distribution vetoed, 92;
  surplus deposited with States, 92;
  defaulters, 96, 97, 98, 103.

Rhett, Robert Barnwell, 6, 15;
  threatening secession, 117, 132, 150, 152;
  retired after 1850, 181;
  for secession, 264, 270;
  opposed to Davis, 312, 324.

Rhode Island, 15.

Rice, 5, 12, 132.

Rice, Nathan L., slavery divine, 221.

Richmond, Va., 10;
  and Bank, 79;
  wheat market, 133;
  Confederate capital, 280;
  social life, 280;
  evacuated, 326.

Rio Grande, boundary proposed, 130, 148, 194.

Ritchie, Thomas, and Walker, 129;
  for Compromise of 1850, 178.

Rives, William C., supporting Tyler, 116, 324.

Robinson, Charles, anti-slavery leader, 244.

Rosecrans, General W. S., 295;
  battle of Murfreesboro, 295, 303.

Ross, John, chief of Cherokees, 88.

Rush, Richard, candidate for Vice-President, 17.

St. Louis, Mo., Mercantile Library, 35;
  fur trade, 35;
  in cotton belt, 135, 193;
  Pacific Railroad, 235.

Santa Anna, 154.

Sargent, John, candidate for Vice-President, 67.

Savannah, Ga., blockade-running from, 313;
  captured by Sherman, 324.

Scammon, John Y., 202.

Schurz, Carl, and Lincoln's election, 264.

Scott, General Winfield, sent to Mexico, 155;
  captures Vera Cruz, 155;
  Cerro Gordo, 156;
  Churubusco, 156;
  Molino del Rey, 156;
  Chapultepec, 156;
  Mexico City, captured, 156;
  Whig candidate for President, 181;
  blunders, 181;
  defeat, 182, 283.

Secession, final remedy, 6;
  Calhoun and, 145;
  over Texas question, 167;
  over California, 176;
  of South, contemplated, 198;
  threatened in 1856, 246;
  of Wisconsin threatened, 252;
  much talked of, 253;
  historical background, 268, 270.

Sectionalism, in South Carolina, 5;
  in North Carolina, 8;
  in Virginia, 10, 145;
  checked, 171, 205, 231;
  renewed, 235;
  strong, 265.

Seminole War, 2;
  and Jackson, 64.

Seward, William H., anti-slavery Whig, 164;
  for Wilmot Proviso, 171;
  adviser to Taylor, 175, 179, 180, 184, 214;
  attacks Douglas, 240, 242, 243;
  and Kansas, 245;
  for popular sovereignty, 251, 255, 257;
  Chicago Convention, 261, 262;
  defeated, 263;
  conciliatory, 269, 271;
  for peace, 273;
  and arbitrary arrests, 304;
  opposes emancipation, 304, 315;
  meets Confederate commissioners, 324.

Seymour, Horatio, Democratic leader, 321.

Sheridan, General Philip, wins at Winchester, 322;
  lays waste Shenandoah Valley, 322, 326.

Sherman, General W. T., 303;
  in Georgia, 318;
  forces Johnston back, 319;
  defeats Hood and captures Atlanta, 319;
  march to sea, 322, 323;
  captures Savannah, 324, 325;
  Johnston surrenders to, 327.

Shiloh, battle of, 293.

Ship subsidies, 205, 232, 235.

Shipping, manufacturing gaining in East, 41, 47;
  merchants appeal to Hayne, 48;
  increase, 1850-60, 205.

Simms, William Gilmore, 225.

Slave-owners, 138;
  number, 139.

Slave trade, negotiations with England, 123;
  Creole affair, 124;
  agitation for reopening, 198;
  active, 252;
  forbidden by Confederacy, 271.

Slavery, in South Carolina, 4;
  in North Carolina, 9;
  in Virginia, 10, 13, 30, 118;
  value of slaves, 42;
  product, 42;
  in Democratic platform, 110;
  Dew on, 118;
  "a blessing," 118, 119;
  and Northern business, 119, 134;
  plantation life, 136, 210;
  profitable unit, 137;
  in Southwest, 140;
  and the churches, 144;
  early Southern opposition, 161;
  abolition and, 163;
  in Territories, 174;
  and California, 175;
  Dred Scott decision, 248;
  Lincoln-Douglas debates, 256;
  Freeport doctrine, 256;
  popular sovereignty, 236, 255, 256;
  and Republicans, 262;
  guaranteed by Confederacy, 271.

Slaves, conditions of life, 210;
  faithful during war, 277;
  emancipation to be proclaimed, 302;
  Davis offers emancipation of, in effort to secure European recognition
    of Confederacy, 323;
  offered freedom to fight, 325.

Slidell, John, 91;
  mission to Mexico, 153, 215, 258;
  commissioner to Europe, 285;
  in France, 315.

Sloat, Commodore John D., seizes California, 154.

Smith, Gerrit, 166.

Sons of Liberty, 321, 323.

Soule, Bishop, 34.

Soulé, Pierre, commissioner to Spain, 233;
  recalled, 234;
  Ostend Manifesto, 234.

South, 4, 6, 7, 8, 12, 13;
  against Adams, 13;
  for Jackson, 17, 18, 23;
  planters not democratic, 24;
  alliance with West, 30, 40, 109, 129, 131;
  uneasy about slavery, 37;
  population, 40, 41, 42;
  exports, 42;
  banks and circulation, 45;
  trade with New England, and New York, 46;
  cotton, slaves, land, 47, 48;
  judges for property interests, 51, 55, 58;
  for free trade, 59;
  and the Bank, 60, 61, 69, 80;
  control or secession, 62;
  and protection, 68, 69, 70;
  and nullification, 72;
  market for East, 75;
  and Union, 75;
  removal of Indians, 87;
  for Van Buren, 93;
  land office defaulters, 96, 101, 115, 117, 118, 119;
  for Texas, 120;
  North outstripping, 121, 124;
  and Texas, 126;
  Oregon and Texas, 129;
  Walker letter, 129;
  California, Oregon, and Texas, 132;
  _ante-bellum_, and civilization, 132, 133, 135;
  plantation life in, 136, 138, 139, 140, 141;
  rural life, 142;
  court days, 142;
  few paupers and insane, 142, 143, 145, 160, 161;
  abolitionists mistrust, 163, 164;
  and abolition agitation, 165;
  Texas or secession, 167;
  for Cass, 172;
  break with Northwest, 173;
  desperate situation, 174;
  proposed conventions, 176, 178;
  accepts compromise, 181;
  population, 185;
  railroad building, 189;
  plantation system, 193, 194, 195;
  commercial conventions, 195;
  Cuba, Nicaragua, slave trade, 198;
  contemplating secession, 198, 203;
  trade with North, 205, 213;
  aristocratic life, 213;
  Calvinistic religion, 218;
  public education, 223;
  college students, 224, 234;
  clash with Northwest, 236, 240;
  becoming solid, 243, 246;
  against Douglas, 257;
  John Brown raid, 259;
  preparing for secession, 264;
  and Lincoln's election, 268, 269;
  war enthusiasm, 276, 277;
  Union areas, 278, 279, 280;
  confidence, 282;
  currency and finances, 286;
  not ready for reunion, 309;
  debt currency and taxation, 310;
  dissensions, 310, 311;
  cost of war to, 328.

South Carolina, 4;
  cotton and politics, 5;
  Calhoun and Jackson, 8, 11, 14, 19, 23, 28, 30;
  nationalism and protection to particularism and free trade, 54, 55,
    60, 63, 65, 66, 68;
  ready to nullify, 70;
  nullification, 71, 72;
  Jackson's Proclamation and Force Bill, 73;
  repeal of nullification, 75, 77, 82;
  internal improvements and debt, 98;
  bank laws, 106;
  for Van Buren, 111;
  "slavery a blessing," 119;
  Calhoun and, 119;
  loses representatives, 121, 128, 131, 140, 141;
  Presbyterians, 143;
  and Wilmot Proviso, 171;
  California and slavery, 175;
  secession of, 269, 270;
  Union area, 278, 313;
  Sherman and, 325.

Southwest, radical, 23;
  newly rich, 31;
  and nullification, 72;
  river commerce, 90;
  cotton expansion, 90;
  growth, 121;
  and old South, 140.

Sparks, Rev. Jared, 73.

Specie Circular, 92;
  effect on business, 102;
  demand for repeal, 102, 103.

Squatter sovereignty, started by Cass, 171.

Stanton, Edwin M., Secretary of War, 299;
  arbitrary arrests, 304.

Steamers, on Great Lakes, 35;
  on the Mississippi, 35.

Stephens, Alexander H., for Taylor, 171;
  out of favor, 175;
  blaming anti-slavery, 176;
  defends Douglas, 240;
  Democrat, 243;
  Vice-President of Confederacy, 271;
  reëlected, 286;
  for reunion, 309;
  would impeach Davis, 323, 324, 325.

Stevens, Thaddeus, supports Lincoln, 322.

Story, Joseph, 15, 252.

Suffrage, 3;
  in North Carolina, 9;
  in Virginia, 10;
  in New York, 14;
  in Connecticut, 14;
  in Massachusetts, 15;
  in Rhode Island, 15.

Sugar, 12, 132, 194.

Sully, portrait painter, 54.

Sumner, Charles, for constitutional abolition, 168;
  hostile to Webster, 179, 184, 215;
  against Nebraska Bill, 240, 241, 242;
  "Crime-of-Kansas" speech, 245;
  assaulted by Brooks, 245, 253, 263;
  uncompromising, 273;
  for immediate emancipation, 301;
  denounces Lincoln, 316, 320;
  supports Lincoln, 322.

Sumter, Fort, 270, 272, 273;
  bombardment of, united North, 283.

Supreme Court, of United States, proposal to limit powers, 16, 50, 51, 55;
  of Georgia, Jackson and, 72;
  Cherokee Nation against Georgia, 88;
  changed, 99;
  Dred Scott decision, 247.

Surplus. _See_ Revenue.

Taney, Roger B., Attorney-General, 65;
  Secretary of the Treasury, 79.

Tariff, 5, 6, 7, 44, 51, 53, 55, 65, 66, 68, 69;
  Jackson and, 59;
  and South Carolina, 60, 62;
  nullification, 71;
  Verplanck Bill, 73;
  compromise of 1833, 74, 77;
  and Whigs, 110, 112, 173;
  and Clay, 114;
  law of 1842, 117, 130;
  of 1846, 150, 151;
  low, 1850, 60, 205, 268;
  and Confederacy, 271.

Taylor, Zachary sent across Nueces River, 148;
  ordered to the Rio Grande, 154;
  into Mexico, 154;
  Monterey, 154;
  suggested for Presidency, 155;
  Buena Vista, 155;
  nominated for President, 171;
  slave-owner, 171;
  in Presidential campaign, 172;
  courted by North and South, 174, 175;
  and California, 176;
  defies South, 176;
  and Clay, 176;
  beaten, 180;
  death, 180.

Tennessee, and Clay, 21, 22, 32, 40;
  and nullification, 72, 93;
  "slavery a blessing," 119, 121, 141;
  Presbyterians in, 143, 182;
  and Nebraska Bill, 238, 245;
  secession of, 275;
  Union areas, 279, 293, 311, 313.

Tennessee River, immigration to, 13, 161;
  Grant on, 293.

Texas, 16;
  American occupation, 25;
  desired by West, 24;
  and Van Buren, 89, 105, 106;
  applies for annexation, 104, 120;
  independent, 121, 125, 126;
  and England, 126, 127;
  Walker letter, 129, 130, 131, 132, 135;
  treaty of annexation rejected by Senate, 147;
  and election of 1845, 147;
  annexed, 147;
  disputed boundary, 148, 152;
  Slidell's mission, 153;
  secession over, 167;
  New Mexican boundary, 176;
  and Pacific Railroad, 233;
  secession of, 275.

Thompson, Jacob, Confederate agent Canada, 323.

Thompson, William Tappen, 227.

Timrod, Henry, 227.

Tobacco, 12, 35, 66, 75, 132, 186;
  staple, 194.

Toombs, Robert, 175;
  and Kansas question, 244.

Topeka Constitution, of Kansas, 250.

Transcendental Club, 52.

Transcendentalists, 226.

Treasury of United States, full, 186, 292.

Treasury notes, issued in 1877, 103.

Trist, Nicholas, envoy to Mexico 156, 157.

Trumbull, Lyman, 255.

Tyler, John, against Jackson, 93;
  for Vice-President, 110;
  elected, 111;
  succeeds Harrison, 115;
  and Clay, 115;
  vetoes Bank bills, 116;
  Cabinet resigns, 116, 121;
  Texas and Oregon, 125;
  Texas treaty, 130, 131, 147, 168.

Tucker, George, historian, 228.

Twain, Mark, 227.

_Uncle Tom's Cabin_, 184.

Union party, Bell and Everett, 261;
  for conciliation, 270.

Unitarians, 218;
  and abolition, 221.

University, of Indiana, Presbyterian, 223;
  of Michigan, Methodist Chaplain, 223;
  of North Carolina, Presbyterian, 223;
  of South Carolina, 143;
  of Virginia, 143;
  chaplain at, 223.

Upshur, Abel P., Secretary of State, 126;
  and Texas, 127;
  death, 127, 147.

Utah, in Compromise of 1850, 176.

Van Buren, Martin, "boss" of New York, 14;
  in Senate, 16, 17, 18, 58;
  in Jackson's favor, 62, 63;
  Calhoun rival, 64, 65;
  Minister to England, 68;
  for Vice-President, 68;
  and Jackson, 73, 83, 89;
  for President, 92;
  conservative, 94;
  spoils system, 96;
  difficulties, 97, 100;
  and panic of 1837, 102;
  and Independent Treasury, 103;
  and Texas, 104, 105, 107, 121, 127, 167;
  and opposition, 108;
  and Democrats, 109;
  blamed for panic, 110;
  and campaign of 1840, 111, 114, 120;
  and Walker, 129;
  not renominated, 130, 147;
  against Cass, 172;
  Free-Soil candidate, 173.

Vance, Zebulon B., opposed to Davis, 312.

Vanderbilt, Commodore, steamboat and railroad lines, 192.

Vermont, for Scott, 182.

Verplanck Tariff Bill, Jackson's measure, 73.

Vicksburg, 293.

Virginia, 3, 7, 10, 11, 13, 14;
  for Jackson, 18, 23, 28, 30;
  depression, 39;
  and nullification, 46, 50, 55, 67, 72;
  embassy from, to South Carolina, 75;
  internal improvements and debt, 98;
  for Van Buren, 111;
  banks, 115, 117;
  loses representative, 121;
  Van Buren and Texas, 128, 132, 133, 140, 143, 149;
  and slavery, 161, 162;
  and Compromise of 1850, 178, 195;
  convicts, in 1860, 213;
  springs, 214;
  Know-Nothing fight, 242;
  John Brown raid, 258, 264;
  calls peace conference, 272;
  secession of, 275;
  Union areas, 279;
  western revolt and statehood, 279;
  resistance to conscript laws, 311;
  opposition party, 312, 323.

Wade, Benjamin F., 242, 253, 299.

Walker, Robert J., Senator, 128;
  Texas and Oregon letter, 129;
  Baltimore Convention, 129, 140, 147;
  Secretary of the Treasury, 147;
  Independent Treasury, 150;
  Tariff of 1846, 150, 151;
  for annexing Mexico, 157, 235;
  Governor of Kansas, 249;
  clash with Van Buren, 249;
  financial agent of United States in Europe, 315.

Walker, William, 198, 235.

War of 1812, 84;
  debt paid, 99;
  and New England, 268.

Washington, D.C., and Bank, 79, 209.

Washington Territory, 199.

Webster, Daniel, 15, 17, 30, 37, 54, 55;
  debate with Hayne, 61, 63, 66, 69, 70, 73, 74, 79, 80, 82, 84, 91, 93,
    96, 107, 108, 110;
  and Clay, 117;
  Ashburton Treaty, 123, 125;
  mission to England, 126;
  resigns as Secretary of State, 126;
  and campaign of 1844, 131;
  and Oregon, 149, 150, 152;
  and "all of Mexico," 158;
  snubbed, 171, 172, 173;
  and Compromise of 1850, 176, 179;
  "Seventh-of-March" speech, 179;
  attacked, 180;
  Secretary of State, 180, 181;
  death, 181, 268.

Weed, Thurlow, for Taylor, and Southern alliance, 171, 179, 243, 255;
  conciliatory, 269, 271.

Wentworth, John, Republican leader, 255.

West, 2, 3;
  radical, 4;
  against Adams, 17;
  and Jackson, 18, 21, 23;
  alliance with South, 19, 24, 25, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 36, 109, 131,
  religious life, 33;
  schools and colleges, 34, 35;
  and East, 39, 40, 43, 46;
  banks and circulation, 45;
  and courts, 51, 55, 58, 59;
  and public lands, 59, 62;
  and Bank, 60, 61, 63, 66, 67;
  Bank and Jackson, 69, 70, 74;
  market for East, 75, 80;
  removal of Indians, 87;
  population, 89, 90;
  speculation in, 91, 92;
  canals and railroads, 92, 93, 97;
  against Van Buren, 93, 96, 110;
  state debts, 98, 106;
  Specie Circular, 101, 108;
  for Harrison, 111, 112;
  and Calhoun, 120;
  Texas and Oregon, 122;
  Webster-Ashburton Treaty, 124;
  Walker letter, 129;
  and Mexican War, 160;
  for Cass, 172;
  railroad building, 189, 201, 205, 213;
  school lands, 223;
  threats of secession, 268;
  love of Union, 289;
  against emancipation, 304.

West Indies, trade with British, 84.

West Virginia, organized and admitted, 279;
  lost to South, 313.

Whigs, campaign of 1836, 93;
  panic of 1837, 102, 108, 109;
  in 1840, 110;
  divided, 114;
  and Tyler, 115;
  and Texas, 128, 147;
  Independent Treasury, 151;
  Taylor for President, 155, 157;
  and Wilmot Proviso, 170;
  Convention of 1848, 171, 173;
  Southern and Taylor, 174;
  Southern, for Union, 178;
  secure Compromise of 1850, 181;
  Northwestern, join Republicans, 241;
  Eastern, and Know-Nothings, 242, 243, 264.

White, Hugh Lawson, revolt against Jackson, 93;
  candidate for President, 93.

Whitney, Asa, and Pacific Railroad, 204, 233.

Whitney, Eli, cotton gin, 199.

Whittier, John G., lines on Webster, 180, 220.

Wilmot, David, and Wilmot Proviso, 170.

Wilmot Proviso, and Northwest, 153;
  in Congress, 170.

Wirt, William, 17, 53;
  and anti-Masonic party, 67, 70.

Wisconsin, 87;
  settlement, 89, 90, 105, 106;
  made State, 198;
  Indians removed, 199, 205;
  Republican party in, 241;
  nullifies Fugitive Slave Law, 252;
  Democratic, 302.

Wise, Henry A., 67;
  supports Tyler, 116, 121;
  defeats Know Nothings, 243, 253;
  and John Brown raid, 258.

Women, position of, on frontier, 32;
  in factories, 210;
  life on farm, 212.

Woolens Bill of 1827, 6.

Worcester Convention of 1857, 253.

Wright, Silas, 82, 105, 108.

Yale College, influence, 222.

Yancey, William L., Oregon and Texas, 132;
  expansionist, 150;
  and crisis of 1850, 176;
  retirement in 1850, 181;
  and public education, 223, 261;
  for secession, 264;
  opposed to Davis, 312;
  death, 312.

Yucatan, United States and, 157.

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