By Author [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Title [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Language
all Classics books content using ISYS

Download this book: [ ASCII | HTML | PDF ]

Look for this book on Amazon

We have new books nearly every day.
If you would like a news letter once a week or once a month
fill out this form and we will give you a summary of the books for that week or month by email.

´╗┐Title: Something of Men I Have Known - With Some Papers of a General Nature, Political, Historical, and Retrospective
Author: Stevenson, Adlai E. (Adlai Ewing), 1835-1914
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
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 "Something of Men I Have Known - With Some Papers of a General Nature, Political, Historical, and Retrospective" ***

This book is indexed by ISYS Web Indexing system to allow the reader find any word or number within the document.

Transcriber's notes:

   The diaeresis is transcribed by a following hyphen.

   The contraction "n't" appears both as a separate word and as a
   suffix in the text.  Since this seems to be the choice of the
   Linotype operator, not the author, it has been changed to modern
   usage.  Differing spellings of "Lafayette" and "judgment" have
   been standardized.  The author's spelling of "Pittsburg", "Alleghanies",
   "Tombs", "McDougall", and "Breckenridge" has been retained.

   Hyphenations at the end of lines have been eliminated wherever
   possible.  Those remaining are words that are hyphenated
   elsewhere in the text, or in general usage.

   A few corrections of punctuation and of single letters have
   been made.

   This transcription was typed into MS-DOS Editor under Windows
   XP, spell-checked in Word Perfect, and examined with Gutcheck.


With Some Papers of a General Nature, Political, Historical, and



Fully Illustrated

Second Edition


[Publisher's logo]

A. C. McClurg & Co.

A. C. McClurg & Co.
Published October, 1909
Second Edition, December 17, 1909
The Lakeside Press
R. R. Donnelley & Sons Company

Letitia Green Stevenson


To write in the spirit of candor of men he has known, and of great
events in which he has himself borne no inconspicuous part, has
been thought not an unworthy task for the closing years of more
than one of the most eminent of our public men.  It may be that
the labor thus imposed has oftentimes enabled the once active
participant in great affairs submissively "to entertain the lag
end of his life with quiet hours."

Following the example of such at a great distance and along a
humbler path, I have attempted to write something of events of
which I have been a witness, and of some of the principal actors
therein during the last third of a century.

My book in the main is something of men I have personally known;
the occasional mention of statesmen of the past seems justified by
matters at the time under discussion.

With the hope that it may not be wholly without interest to some
into whose hands it may fall, I now submit this slight contribution
to the political literature of these passing days.

A. E. S.
_August 1, 1909._




                        [facing] PAGE
   ADLAI E. STEVENSON  _Frontispiece_
   ADLAI E. STEVENSON AT 30         8
   JAMES S. EWING                   9
   GEORGE F. HOAR                  12
   SAMUEL J. TILDEN                13
   JAMES G. BLAINE                 18
   ROBERT E. WILLIAMS              19
   JAMES A. GARFIELD               22
   NATH. P. BANKS                  23
   WILLIAM R. MORRISON             26
   WILLIAM M. SPRINGER             27
   SAMUEL J. RANDALL               30
   ALEXANDER H. STEPHENS           30
   LUCIUS Q. C. LAMAR              30
   JAMES B. BECK                   30
   DAVID DUDLEY FIELD              31
   HENRY WATTERSON                 33
   SAMUEL S. COX                   34
   LEVI P. MORTON                  48
   JAMES A. McKENZIE               49
   WILLIAM McKINLEY                56
     OF SENATE                     57
   ABRAHAM LINCOLN                 82
   ANDREW JOHNSON                  83
   ULYSSES S. GRANT               100
   HORATIO SEYMOUR                101
   STEPHEN A. DOUGLAS             126
   SAMUEL F. B. MORSE             127
   WILLIAM M. GWIN                170
   JAMES SHIELDS                  171
   JAMES SMITHSON                 174
   JOSEPH HENRY                   175
   JOHN REYNOLDS                  196
   JOSEPH SMITH                   197
   R. G. INGERSOLL                226
   PETER CARTWRIGHT               227
   WILLIAM M. EVARTS              262
   JOE WHEELER                    263
   DAVID DAVIS                    286
   S. S. PRENTISS                 287
   EDWIN BOOTH                    304
   JOSEPH JEFFERSON               305
   RUFUS CHOATE                   312
   ISAAC N. PHILLIPS              313
   W. H. MILBURN                  317
   R. J. OGLESBY                  346
   JOSEPH W. FIFER                347
   LAWRENCE WELDON                352
   THOMAS F. MARSHALL             353
   MATTHEW T. SCOTT               372
   ADLAI E. STEVENSON             373
   LYMAN TRUMBULL                 382




The period extending from my first election to Congress in 1874,
to my retirement from the Vice-Presidency in 1897, was one of
marvellous development to the country.  Large enterprises were
undertaken, and the sure foundation was laid for much of
existing business conditions.  The South had recovered from the
sad effects of the Civil War, and had in a measure regained its
former position in the world of trade, as well as in that pertaining
to the affairs of the Government.  The population of the country
had almost doubled; the ratio of representation in the Lower House
of Congress largely augmented; the entire electoral vote increased
from 369 to 444.  Eight new States had been admitted to the Union,
thus increasing the number of Senators from seventy-four to ninety.

The years mentioned likewise witnessed the passing from the national
stage, with few exceptions, of the men who had taken a conspicuous
part in the great debates directly preceding and during the Civil War
and the reconstruction period which immediately followed.  By
the arbitrament of war, and by constitutional amendment, old
questions, for a half-century the prime cause of sectional strife,
had been irrevocably settled, and passed to the domain of history.
New men had come to the front, and new questions were to be discussed
and determined.

To the student of history, the years immediately preceding the
Civil War are of abiding interest.  In some of its phases slavery was
the all-absorbing subject of debate throughout the entire country.
It had been the one recognized peril to the Union since the formation
of the Government.  Beginning with the debates in the convention
that formulated the Federal Constitution, it remained for seventy
years the apple of discord,--the subject of patriotic apprehension
and repeated compromise.  The last serious attempt to settle
this question in the manner just indicated was by the adjustment
known in our political history as "the compromise measures of 1850."
These measures, although bitterly denounced in the South as well
as in the North, received the sanction in national convention of
both of the great parties that two years later presented candidates
for the Presidency.  It is no doubt true that a majority of the
people, in both sections of the country, then believed that the
question that had been so fraught with peril to national unity from
the beginning was at length settled for all time.  The rude
awakening came two years later, when the country was aroused, as it
had rarely been before, by impassioned debate in and out of Congress,
over the repeal of the Missouri Compromise.  It was a period of
excitement such as we shall probably not see again.  Slavery in
all its phases was the one topic of earnest discussion, both upon the
hustings and at the fireside.  There was little talk now of
compromise.  The old-time statesmen of the Clay and Webster, Winthrop
and Crittenden, school soon disappeared from the arena.  Men hitherto
comparatively unknown to the country at large were soon to the

Conspicuous among them was a country lawyer whose home was at
Springfield, Illinois.  With the mighty events soon to follow, his
name is imperishably linked.  But it is not of Lincoln the President,
the emancipator, the martyr, we are now to speak.  It is of Lincoln
the country lawyer, as he stepped upon the arena of high debate,
the unswerving antagonist of slavery extension half a century
and more ago.

His home, during his entire professional life, was at the capital of
the State.  He was, at the time mentioned, in general practice as a
lawyer and a regular attendant upon the neighboring courts.  His
early opportunities for education were meagre indeed.  He had been
a student of men, rather than of books.  He was, in the most
expressive sense, "of the people,"--the people as they then were.

  "Know thou this, that men are as the time is."

His training was, in large measure, under the severe conditions to
be briefly mentioned.  The old-time custom of "riding the circuit"
is to the present generation of lawyers only a tradition.  The few
who remember central Illinois as it was sixty years ago will readily
recall the full meaning of the expression.  The district in which Mr.
Lincoln practised extended from the counties of Livingston and
Woodford upon the north, almost to the Indiana line--embracing the
present cities of Danville, Springfield, and Bloomington.  The last
named was the home of the Hon. David Davis, the presiding judge of
the district.  As is well known, he was the intimate friend of Mr.
Lincoln, and the latter was often his guest during attendance upon
the courts at Bloomington.  At that early day, the term of court
in few of the counties continued longer than a week, so that much of
the time of the judge and the lawyers who travelled the circuit
with him was spent upon horseback.  When it is remembered that there
were then no railroads, but few bridges, a sparse population,
and that more than half the area embraced in that district was
unbroken prairie, the real significance of riding the circuit will
fully appear.  It was of this period that the late Governor
Ford, speaking of Judge Young,--whose district extended from Quincy,
upon the Mississippi River to Chicago,--said:  "He possesses in
rare degree one of the highest requisites for a good circuit judge,
--he is an excellent horseback rider."

At the period mentioned there were few law-books in the State.
The monster libraries of later days had not yet arrived.  The
half-dozen volumes of State Reports, together with the Statutes
and a few leading text-books, constituted the lawyer's library.
To an Illinois lawyer upon the circuit, a pair of saddle-bags was an
indispensable part of his outfit.  With these, containing the
few books mentioned and a change or two of linen, and supplied with
the necessary horse, saddle and bridle, the lawyer of the pioneer days
was duly equipped for the active duties of his calling.  The lack
of numerous volumes of adjudicated cases was, however, not an
unmixed evil.  Causes were necessarily argued upon principle.  How
well this conduced to the making of the real lawyer is well known.
The admonition, "Beware the man who reads but one book," is of deep
significance.  The complaint to-day is not of scarcity, but that
"of the making of many books there is no end."  Professor Phelps
is authority for the statement that "it is easy to find single
opinions in which more authorities are cited than were mentioned by
Marshall in the whole thirty years of his unexampled judicial life;
and briefs that contain more cases than Webster referred to in all
the arguments he ever delivered."

The lawyers of the times whereof we write were, almost without
exception, politicians--in close touch with the people, easy of
approach, and obliging to the last degree.  Generally speaking,
a lawyer's office was as open to the public as the Courthouse
itself.  That his surroundings were favorable to the cultivation
of a high degree of sociability goes without saying.  Story-telling
helped often on the circuit to while away the long evenings at
country taverns.  At times, perchance,

  "the night drave on wi' sangs and clatter."

Oratory counted for much more then than now.  When an important
case was on trial all other pursuits were for the time suspended, and
the people for miles around were in prompt attendance.  This was
especially the case when it was known that one or more of the
leading advocates were to speak.  The litigation, too, was to a
large extent different from that of to-day.  The country was
new, population sparse; the luxuries and many of the comforts of
life yet in the future; post-offices, schools, and churches many
miles away.  In every cabin were to be found the powder-horn,
bullet-pouch, and rifle.  The restraints and amenities of modern
society were in large measure unknown; and altogether much was to
be, and was, "pardoned to the spirit of liberty."  There were no
great corporations to be chosen defendants, but much of the time
of the courts was taken up by suits in ejectment, actions for
assault and battery, breach of promise, and slander.  One, not
infrequent, was replevin, involving the ownership of hogs, when by
unquestioned usage all stock was permitted to run at large.  But
criminal trials of all grades, and in all their details, aroused
the deepest interest.  To these the people came from all directions,
as if summoned to a general muster.  This was especially true if
a murder case was upon trial.  Excitement then ran high, and the
arguments of counsel, from beginning to close, were listened to
with breathless interest.  It will readily be seen that such
occasions furnished rare opportunity to the gifted advocate.  In
very truth the general acquaintance thus formed, and the popularity
achieved, have marked the beginning of more than one successful
and brilliant political career.  Moreover, the thorough knowledge of
the people thus acquired by actual contact--the knowledge of their
condition, necessities, and wishes--resulted often in legislation of
enduring benefit to the new country.  The Homestead law, the law
setting apart a moiety of the public domain for the maintenance of
free schools, and judicious provision for the establishment of the
various charities, will readily be recalled.

Politics, in the modern sense--too often merely "for what there is
in it"--was unknown.  As stepping-stones to local offices and even
to Congress, the caucus and convention were yet to come.  Aspirants
to public place presented their claims directly to the people, and
the personal popularity of the candidate was an important factor
in achieving success.  Bribery at elections was rarely heard of.
The saying of the great bard,

  "If money go before,
  All ways do open lie,"

awaited its verification in a later and more civilized period.  As
late even as 1858, when Lincoln and Douglas were rival aspirants
to the Senate, when every voter in the State was a partisan of one
or the other candidate, and the excitement was for many months
intense, there was never, from either side, an intimation of the
corrupt use of a farthing to influence the result.

No period of our history has witnessed more intense devotion to
great party leaders than that of which we write.  Of eminent
statesmen, whose names were still invoked, none had filled larger space
than did Henry Clay and Andrew Jackson.  The former was the
early political idol of Mr. Lincoln; the latter, of Mr. Douglas.
Possibly, since the foundation of the Government, no statesman has
been so completely idolized by his friends and party as was
Henry Clay.  Words are meaningless when the attempt is made to
express the idolatry of the Whigs of his own State for their great
chieftain.  For a lifetime he knew no rival.  His wish was law
to his followers.  In the realm of party leadership a greater than
he hath not appeared.  At his last defeat for the Presidency strong
men wept bitter tears.  When his star set, it was felt to be the
signal for the dissolution of the great party of which he was
the founder.  In words worthy to be recalled, "when the tidings
came like wailing over the State that Harry Percy's spur was cold,
the chivalrous felt somehow the world had grown commonplace."

The following incident, along the line indicated, may be considered
characteristic.  While Mr. Clay was a Senator, a resolution, in
accordance with a sometime custom, was introduced into the Kentucky
House of Representatives instructing the Senators from that State to
vote in favor of a certain bill then pending in Congress.  The
resolution was in the act of passing without opposition, when a
hitherto silent member from one of the mountain counties, springing
to his feet, exclaimed:  "Mr. Speaker, am I to understand that this
Legislature is undertaking _to tell_ Henry Clay how to vote?"  The
Speaker answered that such was the purport of the resolution.
At which the member from the mountains, throwing up his arms,
exclaimed "Great God!" and sank into his seat.  It is needless
to add that the resolution was immediately rejected by unanimous

Two-thirds of a century ago the Hon. John P. Kennedy wrote of
the lawyers of his day:

"The feelings, habits, and associations of the bar in general, have
a very happy influence upon the character.  And, take it altogether,
there may be collected from it a greater mass of shrewd, observant,
droll, playful, and generous spirits, than from any other equal
numbers of society.  They live in each other's presence like a set
of players; congregate in courts like the former in the green room;
and break their unpremeditated jests, in the intervals of business,
with that sort of undress freedom that contrasts amusingly with
the solemn and even tragic seriousness with which they appear in
turn upon the boards.  They have one face for the public, rife with
the saws and learned gravity of the profession, and another for
themselves, replete with broad mirth, sprightly wit, and gay
thoughtlessness.  The intense mental toil and fatigue of
business give them a peculiar relish for the enjoyment of their
hours of relaxation, and, in the same degree, incapacitate them
for that frugal attention to their private concerns which their
limited means usually require.  They have, in consequence, a
prevailing air of unthriftiness in personal matters, which, however
it may operate to the prejudice of the pocket of the individual, has
a mellow and kindly effect upon his disposition.  In an old member
of the profession, one who has grown gray in the service, there is
a rich unction of originality that brings him out from the ranks
of his fellowmen in strong relief.  His habitual conversancy with the
world in its strangest varieties and with the secret history of
character, gives him a shrewd estimate of the human heart.  He
is quiet, and unapt to be struck with wonder at any of the actions
of men.  There is a deep current of observation running calmly
through his thoughts, and seldom gushing out in words; the confidence
which has been placed in him, in the thousand relations of his
profession, renders him constitutionally cautious.  His acquaintance
with the vicissitudes of fortune, as they have been exemplified in
the lives of individuals, and with the severe afflictions that have
'tried the reins' of many, known only to himself, makes him an
indulgent and charitable apologist of the aberrations of others.
He has an impregnable good humor that never falls below the level of
thoughtfulness into melancholy."

A distinguished writer, two generations ago, said of the early
Western bar:

"Not only was it a body distinguished for dignity and tolerance,
but chivalrous courage was a marked characteristic.  Personal
cowardice was odious among the bar, as among the hunters who had
fought the British and the Indians.  Hence, insulting language,
and the use of billingsgate, were too hazardous to be indulged
where a personal accounting was a strong possibility.  Not only
did common prudence dictate courtesy among the members of the bar,
but an exalted spirit of honor and well-bred politeness prevailed.
The word of a counsel to his adversary was his inviolable bond.
The suggestion of a lawyer as to the existence of a fact was accepted
as verity by the court.  To insinuate unprofessional conduct was
to impute infamy."

I distinctly recall the first time I saw Mr. Lincoln.  In September,
1852, two lawyers from Springfield, somewhat travel-stained with
their sixty miles' journey, alighted from the stage-coach in front
of the old tavern in Bloomington.  The taller and younger of the
two was Abraham Lincoln; the other, his personal friend and former
preceptor, John T. Stuart.  That evening it was my good fortune to
hear Mr. Lincoln address a political meeting at the old Courthouse
in advocacy of the election of General Winfield Scott to the
Presidency.  The speech was one of great ability, and but little
that was favorable of the military record of General Pierce remained
when the speech was concluded.  The Mexican War was then of recent
occurrence, its startling events fresh in the memory of all, and
its heroes still the heroes of the hour.  The more than half-century
that has passed has not wholly dispelled my recollection of Mr.
Lincoln's eloquent tribute to "the hero of Lundy's Lane," and his
humorous description of the military career of General Franklin Pierce.

The incident now to be related occurred at the old National Hotel in
Bloomington in September, 1854.  Senator Douglas had been advertised
to speak, and a large audience was in attendance.  It was his first
appearance there since the passage of the Kansas-Nebraska Bill.
The writer, then a student at the Wesleyan University, with his
classmate James S. Ewing and many others, had called upon Mr.
Douglas at his hotel.  While there the Hon. Jesse W. Fell, a
prominent citizen of Bloomington and the close friend of Mr.
Lincoln, also called upon Mr. Douglas, and after some conversation
with him said in substance, that inasmuch as there was profound
interest felt in the great question then pending, and the people
were anxious to hear both sides, he thought it would be well to
have a joint discussion between Judge Douglas and Mr. Lincoln.  To
which proposition Mr. Douglas at once demanded, "What party does
Mr. Lincoln represent?"  The answer of Mr. Fell was, "the Whig
party, of course."  Declining the proposition with much feeling Mr.
Douglas said, "When I came home from Washington I was assailed
in the northern part of the State by an old line abolitionist,
in the central part of the State by a Whig, and in Southern Illinois
by an anti-Nebraska Democrat.  I cannot hold the Whig responsible for
what the abolitionist says, nor the anti-Nebraska Democrat responsible
for what either of the others say, and it looks like dogging a man
all over the State."  There was no further allusion to the subject,
and Mr. Lincoln soon after called.  The greeting between Judge
Douglas and himself was most cordial, and their conversation,
principally of incidents of their early lives, of the most agreeable
and friendly character.  Judge Lawrence Weldon, just then at the
beginning of an honorable career, was present at the above interview,
and has in a sketch of Mr. Lincoln given its incidents more in

Courts of justice, and the law as a distinctive calling, are the
necessary outgrowths of civilization.  In his rude state, man
avenged his wrongs with his own strong arm, and the dogma, "Might makes
right," passed unchallenged.  But as communities assumed organic
form, tribunals were instituted for the administration of justice and
the maintenance of public order.  The progress of society, from
a condition of semi-barbarism and ignorance to a state of the
highest culture and refinement, may be traced by its advancement
in the modes of administering justice, and in the character and
learning of its tribunals.  The advance steps taken from time to
time in the history of jurisprudence are the milestones which stand
out on the highway of civilization.  All along the pathway of human
progress, the courts of justice have been the sure criteria by
which to judge of the intelligence and virtue of our race.

Truly it has been said:  "With the coming of the lawyer came a new
power in the world.  The steel-clad baron and his retainers were
awed by terms they had never before heard and did not understand, such
as precedent, principle, and the like.  The great and real pacifier
of the world was the lawyer.  His parchment took the place of
the battle-field.  The flow of his ink checked the flow of blood.
His quill usurped the place of the sword.  His legalism dethroned
barbarism.  His victories were victories of peace.  He impressed
on individuals and on communities that which he is now endeavoring
to impress on nations, that there are many controversies that it
were better to lose by arbitration than to win by war and

It is all-important, never more so than now, that the people should
magnify the law.  Whatever lessens respect for its authority bodes
evil and only evil to the State.  No occasion could arise more
appropriate than this in which to utter solemn words of warning
against an evil of greater menace to the public weal than aught to
be apprehended from foreign foe.  In many localities a spirit of
lawlessness has asserted itself in its most hideous form.  The rule
of the mob has at times usurped that of the law.  Outrages have
been perpetrated in the name of summary justice, appalling to
all thoughtful men.  It need hardly be said that all this is in
total disregard of individual rights, and utterly subversive of
all lawful authority.

By the solemn adjudication of courts, and under the safeguards
of law, the fact of guilt is to be established, and the guilty
punished.  The spirit of the mob is in deadly antagonism to all
constituted authority.  Unless curbed it will sap the foundation
of civilized society.  Lynching a human creature is no less murder
when the act of a mob than when that of a single individual.  There
is no safety to society but in an aroused public sentiment that
will hold each participant amenable to the law for the consequences
of the crime he either perpetrates or abets.  This is the land
of liberty, "of the largest liberty," but let it never be forgotten
that it is liberty regulated by law.  Let him be accounted a public
enemy who would weaken the bonds of human society, and destroy what
it has cost our race the sacrifice and toil of centuries to achieve.

The sure rock of defence in the outstretched years as in the
long past, will be the intelligence, the patriotism, the virtue of
a law-abiding, liberty-loving people.  To a degree that cannot
be measured by words, the temple of justice will prove the city of
refuge.  "The judiciary has no guards, no palaces, no treasuries; no
arms but truth and wisdom; and no splendor but justice."



The forty-fourth Congress--the first of which I was a member--
assembled December 6, 1875.  Among its members were many gentlemen
of distinction, some of whom had known active service in the field.
Political disabilities had been in large measure removed, and
the South was now, for the first time since the war, represented in
Congress by its old-time statesmen.  Of this number may be mentioned
Mr. Stephens of Georgia, Mr. Lamar of Mississippi, and Mr. Reagan of
Texas.  From the membership of this House were afterwards chosen
twenty-six Senators, ten members of the Cabinet, one Justice of
the Supreme Court, and from this and the House immediately succeeding,
three Vice-Presidents and two Presidents of the United States.  The
proceedings of this Congress marked an important epoch in our
history.  During its first session occurred the masterful debate
upon the General Amnesty Bill.  The very depths of partisan feeling
were stirred, and for many days it was indeed a titanic struggle.
The speeches attracting the greatest attention were those of Blaine
and Garfield upon the one side, and Hill of Georgia and Lamar upon
the other.  This great debate recalled vividly that of Webster and
Hayne, in the other wing of the Capitol, almost half a century before.

This session also witnessed the impeachment of a Cabinet officer, General
Belknap, Secretary of War.  The trial occurred before the
Senate, sitting as a court of impeachment during the closing weeks
of the session, and resulted in his acquittal, less than two-thirds
of the Senators voting for conviction.  General Belknap was
represented by an able array of counsel, chief of whom were
Judge Black of Pennsylvania and the Hon. Matthew H. Carpenter
of Wisconsin.  Mr. Knott of Kentucky, Mr. Hoar of Massachusetts,
and Mr. Lord of New York, conducted the prosecution in the main as
managers on the part of the House of Representatives.  The principal
contention on the part of the counsel for the accused was that there
could be no conviction, inasmuch as Belknap had resigned his office
before the article of impeachment had been preferred.  This view
seems to have been decisive of the final vote of many Senators,
and the accused stood acquitted at the bar of the Senate.

When the second session of this Congress convened, in December,
1876, the excitement throughout the country was intense over the
pending Presidential contest between Hayes and Tilden.  As will be
remembered, the electoral vote of two States, Louisiana and Florida,
was claimed by each of the candidates.  These votes were decisive of
the result.  As the days passed and the time approached for the
joint session of the Senate and the House, for the purpose of
counting the electoral votes and declaring the result, the tension
became greater, and partisan feeling more intense.  The friends of
Hayes were in the majority in the Senate; those of Tilden, in
the House.  With conflicting certificates, both purporting to give
the correct vote from each of the States named, and no lawful
authority existing to determine as to their validity, it can readily
be seen that the situation was one to arouse the grave apprehension
of all thoughtful men.  The condition was without a precedent in
our history.  Twice had there been a failure to elect a President by
the people, and by constitutional provision the election in each
instance devolved upon the House.  In the first-mentioned case, in
1801, Mr. Jefferson was chosen; and in the latter, in 1825, Mr.
John Quincy Adams.  In neither of the cases just mentioned had
there been a question as to _how_ any State had voted.  It was
simply that no person had received a majority of all of the electoral
votes cast.  The method of settlement was clearly pointed out by
the Constitution.  As already indicated, the case was wholly
different in the Hayes-Tilden controversy.  The question then was as
to _how_ certain States had voted.  It was for the purpose of
ascertaining this fact and certifying the same to the joint session
of the Senate and House, that the Electoral Commission was constituted.
The bill having this end in view originated in the House in January,
1877; the Commission was constituted, and the controverted questions
were soon thereafter determined.

The Electoral Commission was an imperative necessity.  As such
it was created,--consisting of five members each from the Senate, the
House of Representatives, and the Supreme Court.  Its decisions
were adverse to Mr. Tilden from the beginning, and resulted in the
finding that all disputed votes should be counted for his opponent.
This, it will be remembered, gave Hayes a majority of one on the
final count, and resulted in his induction into office.  Partisan feeling
was at its height, and the question of the justice of the decision
of the Electoral Commission was vehemently discussed.

To the end that there might be a peaceful determination of the
perilous question, that of disputed succession to the Presidency, I
was an earnest advocate of the bill creating the Commission.  Upon
the question of concurrence by the House of Representatives in the
final determination of the Commission, bitter opposition was
manifested upon the part of friends of Mr. Tilden, and a heated
partisan debate resulted, and during this debate I spoke as follows:

"When this Congress assembled in December, it witnessed the American
people from one end of the country to the other divided upon the
question as to which candidate had been lawfully elected to the
high office of President of the United States.  The business
industries of the country were paralyzed, public confidence destroyed,
and the danger of civil war was imminent.  That Mr. Tilden had
received a majority of more than two hundred thousand of the popular
vote was not disputed.  That he had secured a majority of the
Presidential electors in the several States, and was lawfully
entitled to be inducted into the great office, was the firm belief
of fully one-half of the people of this country.  The hour was one
of great peril to our institutions, and many were apprehensive that
we were but entering into the dark night of anarchy and confusion.
After many weeks of angry discussion, which resulted in still
further arousing the passions of the people, a measure of adjustment
was proposed.  It was believed that there was still patriotism
enough left in the American Congress to secure an honorable and fair
settlement of this most dangerous question.  We all recall how our
hopes revived, and how gladly we hailed the introduction of the
bill recommended by a joint committee of conference of the Senate and
House of Representatives.  It was welcomed as the harbinger of
peace by the entire people of our country.

"I gave that bill my earnest support.  It had in the House no friend
more ardent in its advocacy than myself.  I believed it to be a
measure in the interest of peace.  I believed that those who framed
it, as well as those who gave it their support upon the floor, were
honest in their statements, that no man could afford to take the
Presidency with a clouded title, and that the object of the bill was
to ascertain which of the candidates was lawfully entitled to
the electoral votes of Florida and Louisiana.  I never mistrusted for
a moment that statesmen of high repute could in so perilous an
hour, upon so grave a question, palter with words in a double sense.

"We who are the actors in this drama know, and history will record
the fact, that the Conference Bill became a law, and the Electoral
Commission was organized, not for the purpose of ascertaining which
candidate had _prima facie_ a majority of the electoral votes; not
for the purpose of ascertaining that the Governor of Florida,
and the _de facto_ Governor of Louisiana, had given certificates
to the Hayes electors.  It was never dreamed that a tribunal,
consisting in part of five judges of the highest court on earth,
was to be constituted, whose sole duty was to report a fact known to
every man in the land, that the returning-board of Louisiana had
given the votes of that State to the Hayes electors.  The avowed
object of that bill was to ascertain which candidate had received a
majority of the legal votes of those States.  The avowed object of
the bill was the secure the ends of justice; to see that the will of
the people was executed; that the Republic suffered no harm; to
see that the title to this great office was not tainted with fraud.
How well the members of this tribunal have discharged the sacred
trust committed to them, let them answer to history.

"The record will stand that this tribunal shut its eyes to the
light of truth; refused to hear the undisputed proof that a majority
of seven thousand legal votes in the State of Louisiana for Tilden
was by a fraudulent returning-board changed to eight thousand
majority for Hayes.  The Republican Representative from Florida,
Mr. Purman, has solemnly declared upon this floor that Florida had
given its vote to Tilden.  I am not surprised that two distinguished
Republican Representatives from Massachusetts, Mr. Seelye and Mr.
Pierce, have in such thrilling tones expressed their dissent from the
judgment of this tribunal.  By this decision fraud has become one of
the legalized modes of securing the vote of a State.  Can it be
possible that the American people are prepared to accept the doctrine
that fraud, which vitiates all contracts and agreements, which
taints the judgments and decrees of courts, which will even annul the
solemn covenant of marriage--fraud, which poisons wherever it enters
--can be inquired into in all the relations of human life save only
where a returning-board is its instrument, and the dearest rights of
a sovereign people are at stake?

"But we are told that we created this tribunal and must abide by
its arbitrament.  I propose to do so in good faith.  I have, from the
beginning, opposed every movement that looked only to delay.  I
have voted against all dilatory motions.  But the decision of this
tribunal is too startling and too far-reaching in its consequences
to pass unchallenged.  That the returning-board of Louisiana
will find no imitators in our future history is more than I dare
hope.  The pernicious doctrine that fraud and perjury are to be
recognized auxiliaries in popular elections is one that may return
to plague its inventors.  The worst effect of this decision will
be its lesson to the young men of our country.  Hereafter old-fashioned
honesty is at a discount, and villainy and fraud the legalized
instruments of success.  The fact may be conceded, the proof
overwhelming, that the honest voice of a State has been overthrown
by outrage and fraud, and yet the chosen tribunal of the people
has entered of solemn record that there is no remedy.

  'O Judgment, thou art fled to brutish beasts!'

"My criticism of the decision of this tribunal rests upon its
finding in the cases of Louisiana and Florida; upon the Oregon case
I have no criticism to offer.  It is true that but two votes of
that State could have been given to Hayes had the decision first
adopted by the Commission been followed in the case of Oregon.
However inconsistent it may be with other rulings of the Commission,
standing alone it is in the main correct.  The sanctity of seal of
State and certificate of Governor applied only to Louisiana and
Florida; the Governor of Oregon was not of the household of the

"The people of Oregon cast a majority of their votes for Hayes,
and no vote or act of mine shall stand in the way of its being
so recorded.  Such have been my convictions from the beginning,
and the great wrong done in Louisiana and Florida cannot warp my
convictions at this hour.

"We have now reached the final act in this great drama, and the
record here made will pass into history.  Time, the great healer, will
bring a balm to those who feel sick at heart because of this grievous
wrong.  But who can estimate, what seer can foretell, the evils
that may result to us and our children from this judgment?  Fortunate,
indeed, will it be for this country if our people lose not faith
in popular institutions; fortunate, indeed, if they abate not their
confidence in the integrity of that high tribunal, for a century the
bulwark of our liberties.  In all times of popular commotion and
peril, the Supreme Court of the United States has been looked to
as the final arbiter, its decrees heeded as the voice of God.  How
disastrous may be the result of decisions so manifestly partisan, I
will not attempt to forecast.

"Let this vote be now taken and the curtain fall upon these scenes
forever.  To those who believe, as I do, that a grievous wrong has
been suffered, let me entreat that this arbitrament be abided in
good faith, that no hindrance or delay be interposed to the execution
of the law, but that by faithful adherence to its mandates, by
honest efforts to revive the prostrate industries of the country, by
obedience to the constituted authorities, we will show ourselves
patriots rather than partisans in the hour of our country's

Some mention will now be made of prominent members of the House
during this Congress.  The Hon. Michael C. Kerr of Indiana was
elected Speaker of the House.  The vote of the Republican minority
was given to the Hon. James G. Blaine, who had been Speaker during
the three Congresses immediately preceding.  Mr. Kerr was a gentleman
of high character and recognized ability.  He had been for many
years a member of the House, and was familiar with the details
of its business.  He was in failing health at the time of his
election, and died before the close of the first session of that
Congress.  He was physically unable to preside during the greater part
of the session, and was frequently relieved from the onerous duties
of the Chair by two new members who were yet to achieve distinction
in that body, Mr. Blackburn of Kentucky and Mr. Springer of

Mr. Blaine, the leader of the minority, had been for twelve years a
member of the House, having been first elected at the age of
thirty-three.  He was a brilliant debater, well versed in parliamentary
law, and at all points fully equipped for the conflict.  With the
exception of Henry Clay, the House of Representatives has probably
never known his equal as a party leader.  That he possessed a touch
of humor will appear from the following.  While the discussion was
at its height upon his amendment excluding Jefferson Davis
from the benefit of the General Amnesty Bill, Mr. Blaine,
looking across to the opposite side of the Chamber, said:
"I confess to a feeling of commiseration for some gentlemen
upon the other side, who represent close districts.  Surrounded by
their Southern associates here, and with intense Union constituencies
at home, their apprehension, as they are called to vote upon
this amendment, is indeed deplorable.  It remind me of a Hibernian
procession I once saw moving down Broadway, where the serious
question was how to keep step to the music, and at the same time
to dodge the omnibuses!"

My seat was just across the aisle from that of Mr. Blaine.  When
introduced, I handed him letters of introduction from two of his
college classmates, the Hon. Robert E. Williams and the Rev. John Y.
Calhoun.  After reading the letters and speaking most kindly of
his old Washington College classmates, he brusquely inquired, "What
are John Y. Calhoun's politics?"

I answered, "He is a Democrat."

Blaine instantly replied, "Well, how strangely things do come around
in this world!  When we were in college together, Calhoun was
the strongest kind of Presbyterian."

I intimated that his sometime classmate was still of that eminently
respectable persuasion.  The reply was, in manner indicating apparent
surprise, "Is it possible that out in your country a man can be
a Presbyterian and a Democrat at the same time?"

I was a member of the Board of Visitors to West Point in June,
1877.  Mr. Blaine and Bishop Quintard of Tennessee were also members.
General Hancock was with our Board for some days at the little West
Point Inn, and delivered the address to the graduating class of
cadets.  He was then in excellent health, and as superb in appearance
as he had been courageous in battle.  I have never heard more
brilliant conversation than that at our table, in which the chief
participants were Gail Hamilton, Bishop Quintard, General Hancock,
Senator Maxey, and Mr. Blaine.  The last named, "upon the plain
highway of talk," was unrivalled.

While the Board was in session, Mr. Blaine and I spent some hours with
the Hon. Hamilton Fish, late Secretary of State, at his country
home near West Point.  Near by was still standing the historic
Beverly Robinson House, the home of Benedict Arnold when he was in
command of the Colonial forces at West Point.  As we passed through
the quaint old mansion, Mr. Blaine, whose knowledge of our
Revolutionary history was all-embracing, described graphically the
conditions existing at the time of Arnold's treason, and just where
each person sat at the breakfast table in the old dining-room in
which we were then standing, on the fateful morning when the courier
from the British camp hurriedly announced to General Arnold the
capture of Major Andre.

Mr. Blaine and I were once passing along Pennsylvania Avenue, a
third of a century ago, when he remarked that the old building just
to our right had once been a high-toned gambling house; that there
were traditions to the effect that some well-known statesmen were not
wholly unadvised as to its exact location and uses.  He then told me
that during his first term in Congress he was early one morning
passing this building on his way to the Capitol.  Just as he reached
the spot where we were then standing, the Hon. Thaddeus Stevens
came down the steps of the building mentioned, and, immediately
after his cordial greeting to Mr. Blaine, was accosted by a
negro preacher, who earnestly requested a contribution toward
the building of a church for his people.  Promptly taking a roll
from his vest pocket, Mr. Stevens handed the negro a fifty-dollar bill,
and turning to Blaine solemnly observed,

  "God moves in a mysterious way
  His wonders to perform!"

At the time first mentioned, Mr. Blaine was in excellent health,
buoyant in spirits, aggressive to the last degree, and full of hope
as to the future.  The disappointments and bereavements that saddened
the closing years of his life had as yet cast no shadow upon his

Next in leadership to Mr. Blaine, upon the Republican side, was
the Hon. James A. Garfield.  He possessed few of the qualities
of brilliant leadership so eminently characteristic of Blaine, but
was withal one of the ablest men I have ever known.  Gifted with
rare powers of oratory, with an apparently inexhaustible reservoir
of information at his command, he knew no superior in debate.
At one period of his life he was the recipient of public honors
without a parallel in our history.  While yet a Representative in
Congress, he was a Senator-elect from Ohio, and the President-elect
of the United States.  For once, it indeed seemed that "fortune
had come with both hands full."  In the words of the Persian poet,
"he had obtained an ear of corn from every harvest."  And yet, a
few months later, in the words of his great eulogist, "the stately
mansion of power had become to him the wearisome hospital of pain,
and he begged to be taken from its prison walls, from its oppressive,
stifling air, from its homelessness and its hopelessness."

My personal acquaintance with Mr. Garfield began early in January,
1876, when we were members of the House Committee appointed by the
Speaker to convey the remains of a deceased member to his late
home, Norwich, Connecticut, for burial.  Another member of the
Committee was Representative Wheeler of New York.  It was late
Saturday afternoon when we were conveyed by carriages from the
crossing at Jersey City to the depot where the Norwich train was
in waiting.  Our route lay for some distance along Broadway, through
the very heart of the great metropolis.  As we passed the hurrying
throngs that crowded the great thoroughfare that sombre winter
evening, Mr. Garfield remarked that it was a scene similar to
the one we were then witnessing that suggested to Mr. Bryant one
of the most stirring of his shorter poems.

At our request and in tones that linger even yet in my memory,
he then repeated these lines:

  "Let me move slowly through the street
  Filled with an ever shifting train,
  Amid the sound of steps that beat
  The murmuring walks like autumn rain.

  How fast the flitting figures come,
  The mild, the fierce, the stony face;
  Some bright with thoughtless smiles, and some
  Where secret tears have left their trace!

  They pass to toil, to strife, to rest,
  To halls in which the feast is spread,
  To chambers where the funeral guest
  In silence sits beside the dead.

  Each where his tasks or pleasures call
  They pass, and heed each other not.
  There is Who heeds, Who holds them all
  In His large love, and boundless thought.

  These struggling tides of life that seem
  In wayward, aimless course to tend,
  Are eddies of the mighty stream
  That rolls to its appointed end."

Norwich, the home of the deceased member, Mr. Starkweather, and
where he was laid to rest, is a beautiful city and one of much
historic interest.  It was here that Benedict Arnold was born, and
the ruins of his early home were still to be seen.  Of greater
interest was a monument standing in an old Indian burying-ground
near the centre of the city,--"Erected to the Memory of Uncas."
It was within the memory of the oldest inhabitant that the President
of the United States and his Cabinet were in attendance at the
dedication of this monument, and deeply interested in the impressive
ceremonies in honor of "the last of the Mohicans."

An exceedingly courteous gentleman upon the same side of the chamber
was the Hon. Nathaniel P. Banks of Massachusetts.  He had been a
Major-general during the late war and was an ex-Governor of his
State.  He first achieved national distinction in the thirty-fourth
Congress, when after a protracted and exciting struggle, he was elected
Speaker of the House of Representatives.  In the body over which he had so
ably presided in ante-bellum days, he had again taken his seat.
While by no means taking the highest rank as a debater, he was
familiar with the complicated rules governing the House, and his
opinion challenged the highest respect.  He and Mr. Blaine were
the only members of that House who had previously held the position
of Speaker.

Near General Banks sat the Hon. William D. Kelley of Pennsylvania.
He had known many years of legislative service, and was long
"the father of the House."  One of the features of its successive
organization, as many old members will recall, was the administration
of the official oath to the Speaker-elect by the member who had known
the longest continuous service--"the gentleman from Pennsylvania."
When in the fulness of times he passed to "the house not made with
hands," his mantle fell upon Judge Holman of Indiana.

The House probably contained no member of rarer attainments in
scholarship than Julius H. Seelye of Massachusetts.  He stood in
the front ranks of the great educators of his day, and was President
of Amherst College during the latter years of his life.  His
political service was limited to one term in Congress.  His speech
near its beginning upon the General Amnesty Bill challenged the
profound attention of the House, and at once gave him honored place
in its membership.

The Congressional career of the Hon. George W. McCrary, of Iowa,
terminated with this Congress.  He was recognized as one of the
ablest lawyers of the House, and was one of its most agreeable and
courteous members.  During the presidency of Hayes he held the
position of Secretary of War, and was later a Judge of the
United States Circuit Court.

The Hon. Joseph G. Cannon of Illinois, the present Speaker, was
just at the beginning of his long Congressional career.  For
many years he has been an active leader of the House and a prominent
participant in its important debates.  His characteristic patience
and long-suffering courtesy have no doubt at times been sorely
tried by attempts to enlarge the sum total of appropriation
bills reported by the Committee of which he was chairman.  To
the important post of "watch-dog of the Treasury," he was, _nem.
con.,_ the successor to the lamented Holman.  In this connection
a suggestive incident is recalled.  One of the guides of the Capitol,
when some years ago showing a visitor through the Vice-President's
chamber, called attention to a little old-fashioned mirror upon
its walls.  The guide explained that this mirror was purchased at a
cost of thirty dollars when John Adams was Vice-President, but when
the bill for its payment was before the House, Mr. Holman objected.
A Western member, who had just been defeated upon a proposed
amendment to an appropriation bill, by reason of a fatal point
of order raised by the chairman, promptly exclaimed, "I move to
strike out Holman and insert Cannon."

The sagacity and untiring industry of Mr. Cannon have elevated him
to the Speakership, and possibly yet higher honors await him.
It is a significant fact in this connection, however, that
notwithstanding the brilliant array of ambitious statesmen who have
held the Speakership for more than a century, only one, Mr. Polk, has
ever reached the Presidency.

The forty-fourth Congress was the last of which the Hon. William A.
Wheeler of New York was a member.  He was elected Vice-president
in 1876, and the duties of that office have rarely been discharged
by an abler or more courteous officer.  He was highly esteemed
by his associates during his long service in the House.  His
principle in action seemed ever to be, "there is nothing so kingly
as kindness."

Messrs. Hale and Frye of Maine, Aldrich of Rhode Island, Money
of Mississippi, Taylor of Tennessee, and Elkins of West Virginia, were
members of this House; all of whom are now Senators of marked
ability, and well known to the entire country.

A member of this House, who at a later date, and in the other wing
of the Capitol, achieved yet greater distinction, was the Hon.
George F. Hoar of Massachusetts.  At the close of this Congress he
was transferred to the Senate, where for more than a quarter of
a century he was a prominent leader.  His ability and attainments were
of the highest, and he was the worthy successor of Webster in
the great body of which he was so long an honored member.

In addition to more solid qualities, Mr. Hoar was gifted with a
keen sense of humor, as will appear from one or two incidents to
be mentioned.  In the House, Mr. Springer, in order to prevent the
reconsideration of resolutions and debate thereupon under the rules,
had frequently cut off the possibility of such debate by the timely
interposition of the words, "Not to be brought back on a motion to
reconsider."  Now, it so fell out that upon a certain day Mr.
Springer received a telegram calling him home just as the roll-call
was ordered upon an important bill.  Earnestly desiring to vote--
which owing to the early departure of his train was impossible
if he waited until his name was regularly reached upon the roll
--he moved to the front of the Speaker, and after brief explanation,
asked unanimous consent to vote at once.  Permission was of course
granted, his name at once called, and his vote given.  Grateful
for the courtesy, he bowed repeatedly to each side of the Chamber,
and, hurrying up the aisle, was about to take his exit, when Mr.
Hoar, pointing his finger at the retreating figure, solemnly
exclaimed, "Not to be _brought back_ upon a motion to reconsider!"

At a much later day the Senate was "advising and consenting" over the
appointment of a distinguished gentleman whose name had just
been sent in for confirmation as Ambassador to an important European
Court.  The gentleman in question had voted for the then incumbent
of the great office, but his former political affiliations had been
wholly with the opposing party.  The nomination was about being
confirmed without objection when Mr. Hoar, arising with apparent
reluctance, said:

"As this is in some measure a family affair, Mr. President, I
hesitate to interfere.  If our friends upon the opposite side of
the Chamber are satisfied with this appointment, I certainly shall
interpose no objection.  The gentleman named is well qualified,
and has more than once held high place at the hands of the party
which he has but recently deserted, and to which he will no
doubt return in due time.  We have, however, in New England an
old-time custom, as sacred as if part of the written law, that if a
man is so unfortunate as to lose his companion he will not marry
again within one year.  Now sir, I have always thought this rule, as
to time, might well be applied to the matter of office-seeking.
Where a man has been repeatedly honored by his party as this
appointee has been, but where, prompted by motives purely unselfish
no doubt, he has gone over to the camp of the enemy, I think a due
sense of modestly should impel him _to serve in the ranks at least
one year_ before being an applicant for high office at the hands
of his newly found friends."

Coming over to the Democratic side of the Chamber, well to its
front sat the Hon. William R. Morrison of Illinois.  By virtue
of his position as Chairman of the Committee on Ways and Means
he was the traditional leader of the House.  Possessing little
of the brilliancy of the leader of the minority, Colonel Morrison was
none the less one of the ablest and most useful members of that
body.  He had for many sessions been a member of the House, and
had been a soldier in the Mexican and in the Civil War.  His record
was honorable, both as soldier and legislator.  He was the author of
the Tariff Bill which was fully debated during the first session
of that Congress, and was in some measure a determining factor
in the Presidential campaign that soon followed.  At a later
day, Colonel Morrison was a prominent candidate for nomination
as President by the national convention of his party.  His personal
friendships and antagonisms were well known.  It is related of him
that during a serious illness, apprehending that the dread messenger
was in near waiting, arousing himself to what appeared to be a last
effort, he said in scarcely audible tones to a sorrowing colleague
at his bedside:  "I suppose when this is all over they will have
something to say about me, as is the custom, in the House.  Well, if
Springer, and Cox, and Knott, and Stevenson want to talk, let them
go ahead, but if old Spears tries to speak _just cough him down."_

Never in any political gathering has there been a more effective
speech, of a single sentence, than that in which Colonel
Morrison presented to the Democratic caucus of the House members
the name of the "Blind Preacher" for Chaplain.  Three or four
candidates were already in nomination when Morrison arose and said:
"Mr. Chairman, I present for the office of Chaplain of the House
the name of Doctor Milburn, a man who loves God, pays his debts, and
votes the Democratic ticket!"  Before the applause that followed
had entirely died away the names of his competitors were withdrawn,
and the "Blind Preacher" was nominated by acclamation.

The Hon. William M. Springer, of the same State, had just entered upon
his twenty years of continuous service in the House.  He came
promptly to the front as a ready debater and skilful parliamentarian.
He was thoroughly educated, ambitious, and withal an excellent
speaker, and was the possessor in full measure of the _suaviter in
modo._  His personal popularity was great, and a more obliging,
agreeable, and pleasing associate it would have been difficult to
find.  He was optimistic to the last degree.  To him every cloud
had a silver lining,--the lining generally concealing the cloud.
It was said of him by one of his colleagues that when the election
returns were coming in, showing overwhelming defeat to his party,--
even before they were fully summed up,--Mr. Springer with
beaming countenance would promptly demonstrate by figures of his
own how we were sure to be victorious four years later.

The Hon. Carter H. Harrison was a prominent member of the Illinois
delegation.  He soon took high rank as an orator, and never failed
to command the attention of the House.  Few speeches delivered
during that session of Congress were so generally published, or
more extensively quoted than were those of Mr. Harrison.  At the
end of four years' service in Congress he was elected Mayor of
Chicago, an office he filled most acceptably for many years.
His tragic death, upon the concluding day of the great Exposition,
was universally deplored throughout the entire country.

The Hon. John H. Reagan, of Texas, was a Representative in Congress
before the war.  At its beginning he resigned his seat in the House,
and cast in his fortunes with the South.  He was early selected
a member of the Davis Cabinet, and continued to discharge the duties
of Postmaster-General until the fall of the Confederacy.  He was
a citizen of Texas while it was yet a Republic, and took an active
part in securing its admission to the Federal Union.  Judge Reagan
was a gentleman of recognized ability, and of exceedingly courteous
and dignified bearing.

An old-time statesman, on the same side of the Chamber, was the
Hon. Fernando Wood of New York.  A generation had passed since
he first entered Congress.  He was a Representative in the old hall
of the Capitol while Webster, Calhoun, and Clay were in their prime.
Erect, stately, faultless in his attire, and of bearing almost
chivalric, Mr. Wood was long one of the active and picturesque
personages of the House.  At the time whereof we write, his sands were
almost run, but, courageous to the last, he was in his accustomed seat
but a little time before the final summons came, and he died, as
was his wish, with the harness on.  All in all, we shall hardly
see his like again.

Surrounded by his colleagues near the centre of the hall sat one
of the most remarkable men of his day, philosopher, jurist, statesman,
orator, Lucius Q. C. Lamar of Mississippi.  In his early manhood
he was a member of the House, and even then was recognized as one of
the most brilliant of the many brilliant men his section had sent to
the national councils.  During the war his services in field and
council were given to the South, and something less than a decade
after the return of peace, Mr. Lamar, still in his prime, again
took his seat in the hall where his first laurels had been won.
His great speech--one that touched all hearts--was not long delayed;
the occasion was the day set apart in the House for tributes to
the memory of the lamented Sumner.  Many eulogies were delivered; that
of Lamar still lingers in the memory of all who heard it.  "The
theme was worthy the orator; the orator, the theme."  As a splendid
tribute to a great tribune, as a plea for peace,--abiding, eternal,
between all sections of a restored union,--it stands unsurpassed
among the great masterpieces of ancient or modern eloquence.

Later, Mr. Lamar was a prominent participant in one of the fiercest
debates the Senate has ever known.  A leading Senator upon the
opposite side of the chamber, in advocating the passage of the
"Force bill," reflected bitterly upon Mississippi and her Senators.
In replying to the personal portion of the speech, Lamar said, "the
Senator has uttered upon this floor a falsehood--knowing it to
be such.  The language I have used, Mr. President, is severe.
It was so intended.  It is language, sir, that no honest man would
deserve, _and that no brave man will wear!"_

Mr. Lamar was one of the most absent-minded of men.  A number of
years ago, by invitation of the Faculty, he delivered an address
to the graduating class of Centre College, Kentucky.  The day
was quite warm, the exercises somewhat protracted, and, at the
close of his able and eloquent address, he was very much exhausted.

An excellent collation, prepared by the ladies connected with
the College, was served in the chapel near by, at the close of the
exercises.  Seated upon the platform, with Mr. Lamar at the head
of the table, were Doctor Young, the President, Justice Harlan,
Governor Knott, the Rev. Doctor Bullock, Chaplain of the Senate,
Judge McCormick, and others.

At the plate of each guest a large tomato was in readiness and,
excellent itself, was, moreover, the earnest of better things to
come.  Immediately upon being seated, Mr. Lamar "fell to" and,
wholly oblivious of the surroundings, soon made way with the one
viand then in visible presence.  Just as its last vestige disappeared,
the President of the College arose and, with a solemnity eminently
befitting the occasion, called upon Doctor Bullock to offer thanks.
Deeply chagrined, Mr. Lamar was an attentive listener to the
impressive invocation which immediately followed.  At its conclusion,
with troubled countenance, he turned to Knott and said, "I am
humiliated at my conduct.  I should have remembered that Presbyterians
always say grace before meals, but I was very hungry and exhausted,
and the tomato very tempting; I have really disgraced myself."  To
which Knott replied, "You ought not to feel so, Mr. Justice; the
blessing of Doctor Bullock's was broad and general; in large measure
retrospective as well as prospective.  It reminds me of a little
incident that occurred on the 'Rolling Fork.'  An old-time deacon down
there was noted for the lengthy blessing which at his table was
the unfailing prelude to every meal.  His hired man, Bill Taylor, an
unconverted and impatient youth, had fallen into the evil habit of
commencing his meal before the blessing thereon had been fully
invoked.  The frown and rebuke of the good deacon were alike
unavailing in effecting the desired reform.  Righteously indignant
thereat, the deacon, in a spirit possibly not the most devout,
at length gave utterance to this petition, 'For what we are _about
to_ receive, and for what William Taylor _has already_ received,
accept our thanks, O Lord!"

In cheery tones the great orator at once replied, "Knott, you
are the only man on earth who could have thought of such a story
just at the opportune moment."  The temporary depression vanished;
Lamar was himself again, and was at once the brilliant conversationalist
of the delighted assemblage.

The surviving members of that Congress will recall a little chair that
daily rolled down the aisle to the front to the Speaker's desk.
It contained the emaciated form of a man whose weight at his best was
but ninety pounds--Alexander H. Stephens of Georgia, "whose little
body lodged a mighty mind."  No one who saw Mr. Stephens could ever
forget him.  He looked as though he had just stepped out from
an old picture, or dropped down from the long-ago.  There was
probably as little about him "of the earth, earthy" as of any mortal
this world has known.  Upon his weak frame time had done its work,
and, true it is, "the surest poison is time."  And yet, his feeble
piping voice--now scarcely heard an arm's length away--was potent in
the contentions of the great hall when he was the honored associate of
men whose public service reached back to the formation of the Government.
In the old hall near by--now the Valhalla of the nation--he had
sat with John Quincy Adams and contemporaries whose names at
once recall the Revolutionary period.  After serving as Vice-President
of the Confederacy, whose rise and fall he had witnessed, Mr.
Stephens, with the shadows falling about him, was, by unanimous
voice of his people, again, in his own words, "in our father's
house."  His apartments in the old National Hotel, as he never
failed to explain to his visitors, were those long ago occupied by
his political idol, Henry Clay.  His couch stood in the exact spot
where Mr. Clay had died; and he no doubt thought--possibly wished--
that his own end might come just where that great Commoner had
breathed his last.  This, however, was not to be.  His last hours were
spent at the capital of his native commonwealth, which had, with
scarce a dissenting voice, just honored itself by electing him
to its chief executive office.

The Hon. Samuel J. Randall, of Pennsylvania, was the successor
of the lamented Kerr as Speaker of the House.  As such he presided
during the last session of the forty-fourth Congress, and during
the two Congresses immediately succeeding.  He had long been a
member, coming in with Blaine and Garfield just before the close
of the war.  Able, courageous, and thoroughly skilled in parliamentary
tactics, he had achieved a national reputation as the leader of the
minority in the forty-third Congress.  During the protracted and
exciting struggle near its close, over the Force Bill--the House
remaining in continuous session for fifty-six hours--Mr. Randall
had displayed wonderful endurance and marvellous capacity for
successful leadership.  He was more than once presented by his
State in Democratic national conventions for nomination to the
Presidency.  He was an excellent presiding officer, prompt,
often aggressive, and was rarely vanquished in his many brilliant passages
with the leaders of the minority.  One incident is recalled, however,
when the tables were turned against the Speaker, no one joining
more heartily than himself in the laugh that followed.  Mr. Conger,
of Michigan, with great earnestness and persistency, was urging
the consideration of a resolution which the Speaker had repeatedly
declared out of order.  By no means disconcerted by the decision, Mr.
Conger, walking down the aisle, was vehement in his demand for the
immediate consideration of his resolution.  At which the Speaker
with much indignation said, "Well, I think the Chair has a right
to exercise a little common sense in this matter."  To which Mr.
Conger instantly responded, "Oh, if the Chair has the slightest
intention of _doing anything of that kind,_ I will immediately take
my seat!"

The Hon. David Dudley Field, elected to fill a vacancy, was a
Representative from the city of New York during the closing session
of the forty-fourth Congress.  He was an eminent lawyer, and, at
the time, stood at the head of the American bar.  His name is
inseparably associated with many important reforms in legal procedure
during the last half century.  He had been instrumental in securing
the appointment of a committee of distinguished jurists, chosen
from the leading nations, to prepare the outlines of an international
code.  His report accompanying the plan, to the preparation of
which he had given much thought and time, received the earnest
commendation of leading publicists and jurists in Europe, as well as
in his own country.  His untiring efforts, looking to the substitution
of international courts of arbitration for war, have given his name
honored place among the world's benefactors.

Mr. Field was the eldest of four brothers, whose names are known
wherever our language is spoken.  The family was distinguished for
talents of the highest order.  It would indeed be difficult to find
its counterpart in our history.  One of the brothers, Stephen J.
Field, was for a third of a century a distinguished justice of the
Supreme Court of the United States.  The youngest, Dr. Henry M.
Field, was eminent alike as theologian and author.  The name of
the remaining brother, Cyrus W. Field, is, and will continue, a
household word in two hemispheres.  After repeated failures, to
the verge even of extremity, "the trier of spirits," the dream of his
life became a reality.  The Atlantic cable was laid, and, in the words
of John Bright, Mr. Field had "moored the New World alongside the Old."

The Hon. Henry Watterson, of Kentucky, was a representative during
the closing session of Congress.  As the editor of a great journal,
Mr. Watterson was already well known to the country.  His talents were
of a high order.  In his chosen field he had no superior.  For many
years he was a recognized leader of his party, and one of the chief
managers in all its national conventions.  His contributions to the
literature of three decades of political campaigns were almost
unparalleled.  As a forcible, trenchant writer he is to be mentioned
with Greeley, Raymond, Prentice, and Dana.  His career, too, as
a public lecturer, has been both successful and brilliant.  The
Congressional service of Mr. Watterson terminated with the session
just mentioned.  His speech, near its close, upon the bill creating
an electoral commission to determine the Tilden-Hayes Presidential
controversy was listened to with earnest attention, and at once
gave him high place among the great debaters of that eventful

While a passenger on a train to Washington, to be present at the
opening of Congress, my attention was directed to a man of venerable
appearance, who entered the sleeping-car at a station not many
miles out from Cincinnati.  He was dressed in "Kentucky jeans" and
had the appearance of a well-to-do farmer.  Standing in the aisle near
me, he was soon engaged in earnest conversation with the porter,
endeavoring to secure a berth.  The porter repeatedly assured
him that this was impossible, as every berth was taken.  He told the
porter that he was quite ill, and must get on his journey.  I then
proposed that he share my berth for the night.  He gladly did so
until other accommodations were provided.

On the Monday following, when the House was in the process of
organization, the name of James D. Williams of Indiana being called,
my sleeping-car acquaintance, still attired in blue jeans, stepped
forward with his colleagues to the Speaker's desk and was duly
sworn in as a member of Congress.  This was his first term, but he
soon became quite well known to the country.  As chairman of the
Committee of Accounts, having to do with small expenditures, he
closely scrutinized every claim presented, and scaled to the lowest
many pet measures.  His determination to economize, as well as his
peculiarity of dress and appearance, soon made him an especial
object of amusement to newspaper correspondents.  He was the butt of
many cheap jokes; one being his alleged complaint that hundreds of
towels were being daily used by members at the Capitol, at the
public expense, while at his home, on his farm, one towel would
last a week, with eleven in the family.  Despite, however, all
jokes and gibes, he soon became the most popular man in his State.
"Blue Jeans Williams" became a name to conjure with; and in the
celebrated campaign of 1876, after an exciting contest, he was
elected Governor, defeating an able and popular leader, who, twelve
years later, was himself elected President of the United States.

No sketch of "the American Commons" during the last fifty years
would be in any measure complete that failed to make mention of
the man who was nineteen times elected a Representative, the
Hon. William S. Holman, of Indiana.  Whatever the ups and downs of
party supremacy, despite all attempts by gerrymandering to relegate
him to the shades of private life, Judge Holman, with unruffled
front, "a mien at once kindly, persuasive, and patient," held
sturdily on his way.  Amid political upheavals that overwhelmed
all his associates upon the ticket, his name, like that of Abou Ben
Adhem, led all the rest.  From Pierce to McKinley--whatever the
issues, and howsoever determined--at each successive organization of
the House "the gentleman from Indiana" was an unfailing respondent
to the opening roll-call.  An old English stanza comes to mind:

  "And this is law, that I'll maintain
  Until my dying day, sir,
  That whatsoever King shall reign,
  Still I'll be vicar of Bray, sir."

His integrity was unquestioned; his knowledge of public business,
phenomenal.  With no brilliancy, little in the way of oratory, Judge
Holman was nevertheless one of the most valuable members ever known to
the House of Representatives.  The Lobby regarded him as its mortal foe.
He was for years the recognized "watch-dog of the Treasury."  Personal
appeals to his courtesy, to permit the present consideration of private
bills, had, in the main, as well have been made to a marble statue.
His well known and long to be remembered, "I object, Mr. Speaker,"
sounded the knell of many a well devised raid upon the Treasury.  It
may be that he sometimes prevented the early consideration of meritorious
measures, but with occasional exceptions his objections were
wholesome.  He kept in close touch with the popular pulse, and
knew, as if by instinct, which would be the safe and which the
dangerous side of the pending measure.  It sometimes seemed that
he could even "look into the seeds of time and tell which grain
will grow and which will not."

It has been said that even great men have at times their little
weaknesses.  An incident to be related will show that possibly
Judge Holman was no exception to that rule.  The consideration
of sundry bills for the erection of post-office buildings in a
number of districts having "gone over" by reason of his objection,
the members having the bills in charge joined forces and lumped
the several measures into an "omnibus bill" which was duly presented.
The members especially interested in its passage, to "make assurance
doubly sure," had quietly inserted a provision for the erection of a
Government building in one of the cities of Holman's district.  When
the bill was read, Judge Holman, as he sat busily writing at his
desk, was, without solicitation upon his part, the closely observed
of every member.  Apparently oblivious, however, to all that was
occurring, he continued to write.  No objection being made, the
bill was in the very act of passing when an exceedingly bright
member from Wisconsin, "being moved and instigated by the devil," no
doubt, rushed to the front and exclaimed, "Mr. Speaker, I desire
to call the attention of the gentleman from the fourth district of
Indiana to the fact that the Treasury is being robbed!"  Unmoved
by the appeal, the Judge continued to write, and, as one of his
colleagues afterwards remarked, "was chewing his tobacco very fine."
After a moment of suspense, and amid applause in which even the
galleries took part, the member from Wisconsin, in tragic tones,
exclaimed, "Ah, Mr. Speaker, our watch-dog of the Treasury, like
all other good watch-dogs, _never barks when his friends are

Mr. Blackburn, of Kentucky, began his long and eventful legislative
career as a member of this Congress.  As the representative of the
Ashland District, he was the successor of Clay, Crittenden, Marshall,
Breckenridge, Beck--illustrious names in the history of the State and
of the nation.  He was worthy of the succession, and, at the close
of ten years' service in the House, was elected to the Senate.  He
came within a few votes of being chosen as the candidate of his
party for Speaker at the opening of the forty-sixth Congress.  He
was a born orator.  It was as natural for him to speak as to breathe.
Wake him up at any hour of the night, and he would be ready upon
the instant for an eloquent speech of any length, upon any subject.
Thoroughly familiar with all that pertained to our political history,
with a voice easily heard above the storm, he was ever in the
forefront of the hurly-burly of heated partisan debate.  There was
little that was conciliatory about him.  He neither gave nor asked
quarter.  A born fighter, he had rather

  "Follow his enemy through a fiery gulf,
  Than flatter him in a bower."

Possessing neither the keen wit of his colleague, McKenzie, nor
the profound humor of Knott, he was nevertheless the hero of
more interesting narratives than any member who ever crossed the
Blue Ridge Mountains.

The incident to be related may have suggested the witty reply of
Senator Proctor to the Vice-President when invited by the latter
to come into the devotional exercises:  "Excuse me, I am _paired_ with
Blackburn on prayers."  This equals his reply when asked by Senator
Hale what he thought of Senator Chandler:  "I _like_ him, but it
is an acquired taste."

Upon the occasion of the retirement of the Rev. Dr. Butler from
the Chaplaincy of the Senate--a position he had filled most acceptably
for many years--many of the Senators spoke regretfully of his
retirement.  The speech of Mr. Blackburn, for beauty of expression
and pathetic eloquence, was unrivalled.  He spoke most tenderly of
the faithfulness of the venerable man of God; how for long years
he had gone in and out before us; of his daily walk and conversation;
how, like the Blessed Master, his only thought was of doing good;
of how he had often invoked the Divine blessing upon us and our
loved ones, and lifted us as it were in his arms up to the very
throne of grace.  The orator seemed inspired, as though his lips
were indeed touched with a live coal from the altar.  The counterpart
of the scene that followed his closing words had never been witnessed
in legislative assembly.  All were in tears.  It was even said that
venerable Senators, who had never shed a tear since the ratification
of the treaty of Ghent, actually sobbed aloud, and refused to be
comforted.  At length, amid silence that could be felt, an adjournment
was effected, and the Senators passed sadly out to their homes.
As he passed the Chair, Senator Vest, in undertone, remarked to
the Vice-President, _"Jo never saw him!"_

The next day, in the absence of his successor, "the blind chaplain,"
Dr. Butler again, and for the last time, officiated, simply repeating
in manner most solemn and impressive, the Lord's Prayer.  At its
conclusion, Senator Blackburn, who had been a most attentive
listener, came forward to the desk and remarked to Vice-President
Stevenson:  "I tell you, sir, I like that new chaplain of ours.
What a splendid prayer!  There is something _original_ about that man!"

Thirty years and more ago, when first a candidate for Congress,
Mr. Blackburn attended a public execution--in common parlance "a
hanging"--in one of the counties in his district.  Being a gentleman
of great distinction, and a candidate for Congress, he was
appropriately invited by the sheriff to occupy a seat with the
prisoner and his spiritual adviser upon the gallows.  At the
near approach of the fatal hour, the sheriff, with watch in hand, amid
the sea of upturned faces, stated to the prisoner that he had
yet five minutes to live, and it was his privilege if he so desired
to address the audience.  The prisoner meekly replied that he
did not wish to speak.  Whereupon Mr. Blackburn, stepping promptly
to the front of the scaffold, said:  "As the gentleman does not
wish to speak, if he will kindly yield me his time, I will take
this occasion to remark that I am a candidate for Congress, regularly
nominated by the Democratic Convention," etc.  This incident being
told in the presence of Mr. Marshall, the opposing candidate,
the latter remarked that he remembered it well, and could vouch
for its truth.  He then added that when Mr. Blackburn proposed
to speak out the prisoner's time, the latter turned to the Sheriff
and inquired who that was.  To which the officer replied, "Captain
Blackburn."  At this the prisoner, who had amid all the exciting
scenes of his arrest and trial, and even up to the present moment,
with his open coffin beside him, displayed marvellous fortitude,
suddenly exhibiting deep emotion, piteously exclaimed, "Please hang
me first, _and let him speak afterwards!"_

When, in the tide of time, will the House of Representatives witness
the like of "Sunset" Cox?  Beginning a Congressional career, which
was to terminate only with his death, when scarcely of the
constitutional age, he was in close succession a representative
from two great States,--in his early manhood from the Capital
district of Ohio, and in his maturer years, even down to old age, the
most prominent of the delegation from the great State of New York.
Mr. Cox was gifted as few men have been in this world.  His literary
attainments were of a high order, and some of the books of which
he was the author will no doubt furnish instructive and entertaining
reading for many generations to come.  He was an indefatigable
student, and seemed, as did Lord Bacon, to have "taken all knowledge
for his province."  His accurate knowledge of the history of all
countries and times was a marvel, and, all at his instant command,
placed him upon rare vantage ground in the many forensic struggles
in which he took part.  Woe betide the unfortunate antagonist whose
record was other than faultless.  He was a born debater, full of
resources, and aggressive to the last degree.  He never waited for
opportunities, but sought them.  In great emergencies he was often
put forward by his political associates for the fierce encounter
with the great leaders upon the opposite side of the Chamber.
He was withal one of the most kindly of men.  He was the soul of
personal and official honor.  His integrity could know no
temptation.  It may truly be said of him that--

  "Whatever record leaps to light,
  He never can be shamed."

His sympathies were deeply enlisted for the safety of those "who
go down to the sea in ships."  For years he was the earnest advocate
of a thorough life-saving system.  Much of the present efficiency of
this humane branch of the public service is due to his untiring
efforts.  He had travelled to all countries, and even to the islands
of the sea.  He was of sunny disposition, and believed that "whatever
places the eye of Heaven visits are to the wise man ports and happy

Mr. Cox was one of the most genial and delightful of associates.
With him and Vance, Knott, and Randolph Tucker as companions for
the social hour, the night would flee away like a shadow.  His wit
was of the rarest order.  He would have been on terms of recognized
kinship with Sydney Smith and Charles Lamb.  He once said of a
vinegar-visaged member that the only regret he had on earth was
that there were no more commandments to keep; what few there were he
kept so easily.  As illustrating his readiness and elasticity,
whatever the emergency, two instances, out of the many that crowd
upon memory, will be given.  During an all-night session of the
House, amid great confusion, the roll-call was ordered.  The first
name, "Mr. Archer," was called, and the response "Aye" was given.
The clerk, failing to hear the response, immediately repeated, "Mr.
Archer," to which the latter, in tones heard above the din of many
voices, again answered "Aye."  Instantly Mr. Cox exclaimed:
"Insatiate Archer, would not one suffice?"

A new member from a district far to the westward entered the House.
His advoirdupois was in keeping with the vast territorial area
he represented.  As a wit, he was without a rival in his section.
The admiration of his constituents over the marvellous attainments
of the new member, scarcely exceeded his own.  Only the opportunity
was wanting when the star of the gentleman from New York should go
down and his own be in the ascendant.  The opportunity at length
came.  Mr. Cox was the victim of the hour; the recipient of many
compliments much more fervid than kind.  The seven vials of wrath were
opened upon him.  A vast storehouse of wit, ancient and modern,
was literally exhausted for the occasion.  Even the diminutive size
of the New York member was mentioned in terms of disparagement.
The speech caused much merriment in the House during its delivery,
and its author with an air of self-satisfaction rarely witnessed
even in that body, resumed his seat.  Mr. Cox at once took the
floor.  No attempt will be made to do justice to his speech.
The manner, the tone of voice, which caused an uproar upon the
floor and in the galleries, can never find their way into print.
Referring to the ill-mannered allusion to his size, he said "that his
constituents preferred a representative with brains, rather than
one whose only claims to distinction consisted in an abnormal
abdominal development."  In tragic tones he then pronounced a
funeral eulogy over his assailant, and suggested, as a fitting
inscription for his tombstone, the pathetic words of Byron,

  "'T is Greece, but living Greece no more!"

Soon after the nomination of Tilden for President, Mr. Cox was
invited to attend a political meeting at the State capital, and
address the Democracy of Vermont.  When the scarcity of Democrats in
the Green Mountain State is taken into account, the significance
of Mr. Cox's reply will readily appear.  His telegram was to the
effect that pressing engagements prevented his attending, but
"if the Democracy of Vermont _will drop into my library_ any
afternoon, about four o'clock, I will address them with great

In attempting to write something of a member so long and so favorably
known to the House as the Hon. J. Proctor Knott of Kentucky, I
am reminded of the opening sentences of the touching tribute of
Judge Baldwin to an honored associate:

"I nib my pen and impart to it a fine hair stroke in order that
I may give the more delicate touch which can alone show forth
the character of this distinguished gentleman.  If I hold the pen in
hand in idle reverie, it is because my mind rests lovingly upon
a picture I feel incapable of transcribing with fidelity to the
original; and therefore I pause a moment to look once more at
the original, before it is obscured by the rude counterpart."

It was worth while to have known Proctor Knott, to have been his
cotemporary in public life, the sharer of his confidence, the guest
at his hearthstone.  In the highest sense of the expression, he
was a gentleman of the old school.  To him there was rare meaning in
the words, "Old wood to burn!  Old wine to drink!  Old friends
to trust!"

He was as familiar with the Bible, with Shakespeare, and Burns, as
though he had written them.  His quotations, whether in private
conversation, or in public speech, were always timely.  There
was little in the way of the best literature, ancient or modern,
that he had not read.  As was truly said of the gifted Prentiss:

"His imagination was colored and imbued with the light of the
shadowy past.  He lingered spell-bound among the scenes of mediaeval
chivalry.  His spirit had dwelt until almost naturalized in the
mystic dreamland of the Paladins, Crusaders, and Knights Templars;
with Monmouth and Percy, with Bois-Guilbert and Ivanhoe and the
bold McGregor; with the Cavaliers of Rupert, and the iron enthusiasts
of Fairfax."

He was the inveterate hater of shams of all kinds, and of mere
pretenders of every description.  He ever avoided the short cuts, and
kept steadily along in the old way.  His heroes, like those of
Dickens, were taken from the common walk; the men he had met in
the road and at the hustings, at whose firesides he had passed many
hours.  Whatever concerned them, whatever involved in any manner
their welfare, was of deep interest to him.  If he had chosen
his own epitaph it might have read:

  "In common ways, with common men,
  I served my race and time."

He was both an artist and a poet.  He loved flowers, and there was
to his ears no music so sweet as the merry laughter of children.
And, whether in private life, or in his great executive office
as "the arbiter of human fate," the tale of woe never failed to
touch a sympathetic cord.  He had in very deed,

  "A tear for pity, and a hand open as day to melting

He was welcome at every hearthstone, as one "who cometh unto you
with a tale which holdeth children from play, and old men from the
chimney corner."

Soon after his admission to the bar, Mr. Knott removed to Missouri,
where he was almost immediately elected to the responsible position
of Attorney-General of the State.  In due time he returned to
his native State, and was for six terms a representative in Congress.
Yet later, and as the shadows were beginning to fall to the eastward,
he was, almost by common acclaim, called to the chief executive
office of the commonwealth.  It may truly be said of him that "with
clear head, and with clean hands, he faithfully discharged every
public trust."

Mr. Knott entered Congress just at the close of the great Civil
War.  It was a period of excitement throughout the entire country,
and of intense foreboding to the section he represented.  In the
debates of that stormy period he bore no mean part.  He was counted
a foeman worthy the steel of the ablest who entered the lists.
A thorough student from the beginning, of all that pertained to
Magna Charta, the Bill of Rights, and the Federal Constitution, he
was equipped as few men have been, for forensic contests that have
left their deep impress upon history.  The evidence of his ability
as a lawyer is to be found in the satisfactory manner in which for
three Congresses he discharged the duties of the trying position
of Chairman of the Judiciary Committee of the House of Representatives.
The ablest lawyers of both political parties constituted this great
committee, and its chairman, if possessing only mediocre talents
or attainments, would have been sadly out of place.

But with his heavy armor laid aside, the genius of Knott was
made manifest along more pleasing lines.  Few speeches ever delivered
in Congress have been so generally read, or so thoroughly imbedded
into current literature, as one he delivered soon after his
first admission to the House.  Duluth awoke the morning after
its delivery to find itself famous.  As, "the zenith city of the
unsalted seas," it has been known and read of all men.  As such,
it will probably continue to be known for ages to come.  The speech
hopelessly defeated a bill making a land grant to a proposed
railroad, of which Duluth was to be the terminus.  His mirthful
prediction, however, as to its marvellous future has been fulfilled.
How true it is that "jesters do oft prove prophets!"  Bearing in
mind that the great city of to-day then had no place even upon the
map, the words quoted from the speech will be appreciated:

"Duluth, Duluth!  The word fell upon my ear with peculiar and
indescribable charm, like the gentle murmur of a brook stealing
forth in the midst of roses, or the soft sweet accent of an angel's
whisper in the bright joyous dream of sleeping innocence.  Duluth!
'T was the name for which my soul had panted for years, as the hart
panteth for the water brooks.  I was convinced that the greatest
calamity that ever befell the benighted nations of the ancient
world was their having passed away without a knowledge of the actual
existence of Duluth; that their fabled Atlantis, never seen save
by the hallowed vision of inspired poesy, was in fact but another name
for Duluth; that the golden orchard of the Hesperides was but a
poetical synonym for the beer-gardens in the vicinity of Duluth.  As
that name first fell upon my ear, a resplendent scene of ineffable
glory opened before me, such as I imagine burst upon the enraptured
visions of the wandering Peri through the opening gates of

Mr. Knott was often the sad and silent man.  His real intimacies
were few, and to strangers he was reserved.  But to those who came
within the circle of his personal friendship he was one of the most
delightful of companions.  No man was ever given less to a
parade either of his friendships or of his animosities.  His enemies
--and it would have been strange if, passing through the eventful scenes
he did, he had had none--knew just where to find him.  He was,
in very truth,

  "Lofty and sour to them that loved him not;
  But, to those men that sought him, sweet as summer."

The cause often of mirth in others, he was at times far from being
joyous himself.  Few men have been the possessors in so rare degree
of the gift of humor, the sure indication of the humane and
sympathetic in our nature; that "which blends the pathetic with
the ludicrous, and by the same stroke moves to laughter and to
tears."  As Emerson says, "Both an ornament and a safeguard--genius
itself."  The line of separation between wit and humor is shadowy,
not easily defined.  There may be in the same individual, in
some measure, a blending of the two.  As has been said:  "While
wit is a purely intellectual thing, into every act of the humorous
mind there is an influx of the moral nature.  Humor springs up
exuberantly, as from a fountain, and runs on, its perpetual game
to look with considerate good-nature at every object in existence,
and dismiss it with a benison."  While wit, the purely intellectual
quality, sparkles and stings, humor, "touched with a feeling of
our infirmity," would "gently scan thy brother man," remembering
ever that

  "What's done we partly may compute,
  But know not what's resisted."

It is not strange, then, that he who in large degree possesses
or is possessed by this subtle quality should be subject to moods,
it may be melancholy--"the effect of that humor that sometime hath
his hour with every man."  That Governor Knott was deeply endowed with
humor in its best sense, no one who knew him could doubt.  In
relating incidents that convulsed his listeners, he gave no
sign; his own features remained as solemn as if he were attending the
obsequies of his dearest friend.  There is something that is
suggestive in the lines of Thomas Hood,

  "There's not a string attuned to mirth
  But has its chord in melancholy."

While Governor of Kentucky, he sent to the Hon. Stoddart Johnson
a certificate, officially signed and bearing the impress of the
great seal of State, duly commissioning him as "Mister," a distinctive
and honorable title that no Kentuckian had previously borne.  This
recalls the witty remark of Max O'Rell:  "The only thing that
Mr. Ingersoll appears to hold in common with his countrymen _is
the title of Colonel."_

Many years ago McCullough, the tragedian, was giving his
splendid impersonations of the two masterpieces of Shakespeare
at the national Capital.  The morning following one of these,
Mr. Knott and I, passing along the avenue on our way to the House,
were stopped by an exceedingly solemn-visaged individual who,
addressing the former, said:  "Mr. Knott, I would like to have your
judgment as to which is the best play, _Hamlet_ or _Macbeth."_

Gazing earnestly at his inquisitor, and in a tone at once deprecatory
and inimitable, Knott replied:  "My friend, don't ask me that
question.  I am a politician, and a candidate for re-election to
Congress; my district is about equally divided; Hamlet has his
friends down there, and Macbeth his, and I am unwilling _to take
any part between them!"_

When in joint canvass with his competitor for the Governorship
of the State, Mr. Knott, having, by appointment, at one of the
county seats in "the Purchase," made the opening speech, was seated
near by to listen to that of the opposing candidate.  The latter, a
gentleman having a high sense of propriety, and a dignity of bearing
that would have done no discredit to an assembly of divines, had
been exceedingly annoyed by Knott's speech, which had in very truth
kept the audience in an uproar during its entire delivery.  Beginning
his reply, he said:

"Fellow-citizens, I will endeavor to indicate to you the kind of
a man who, in my judgment, should be elected to the position of
Governor of this grand old commonwealth.  In the first place, that
exalted position would never be filled by one who, for lack of
serious argument, constantly appeals to the risibilities of his
audience; never by a wit, a mere joker, a story-teller; in other
words--if you will pardon me, my fellow-citizens--by a mere buffoon.
On the contrary, the incumbent of the exalted position of chief
executive of this grand old commonwealth should be a gentleman
of character, of ability, the worthy successor of Shelby, of
Morehead, of Crittenden; he should be a gentleman of scholastic
attainments and of dignified bearing, well versed in classic lore
and a thorough student of the higher order of state-craft.  In a
word, fellow-citizens, you should elect as your Governor a gentleman
of lofty character, of ripe scholarship, of commanding dignity, of
exalted statesmanship, of ----"

At this point, Knott, interrupting, said, in manner and tone the
exact counterpart of that of the speaker, "Pardon me, Colonel Smith,
but I am too modest a man to listen longer to the beautiful and
truthful description _you have just given of me!"_

Whereupon, amidst the wildest applause, he retired from the hall, as
did the audience, and the speaking for the day, and the joint
discussion for the campaign, were closed.



After an absence of two years I was returned to the forty-sixth
Congress.  Circumstances over which I had no control had prevented
my taking a seat in the intervening Congress, my successful competitor
being the Hon. Thomas F. Tipton.  In politics, however, as in
other things, "the whirligig of time brings in his revenges," and I
was in turn the successful competitor of my late opponent in his
candidacy for re-election.

Meanwhile, many changes had occurred in the personnel of the House.
Many familiar names had been dropped from its roll.  Of these, nine
had been transferred to that of the Senate, a former member was
now in the Cabinet, and Mr. Wheeler of New York was Vice-President.
A significant fact in this connection, and one illustrating the
uncertainty of the tenure by which place is held in that body, was
that more than one-third of those with whom I had so recently served
were now in private life.  Possibly no feature of our governmental
system causes more astonishment to intelligent foreigners than the
many changes biennially occurring in the membership of the House
of Representatives.  There is marked difference between the British
House of Commons, and the popular branch of the American Congress.
A seat lost in the latter--it may be by a single unfortunate
utterance, or unpopular vote--is usually a seat lost forever; while
in the former, membership may continue for an almost indefinite
period, and until an "appeal to the country" by the Ministry upon a
new and vital issue.  If defeated by one constituency, the member of
Parliament may soon be returned by another, the question of residence
having no significance.  In fact if possessing superior talents,
the member is liable to be chosen by two or more constituencies at
the same election, the choice then resting with himself as to which
he will represent.  Such has been the experience of the most eminent
of British statesmen.  The names of Burke, Peel, Gladstone, and
Balfour, quite recently, will readily be recalled in this connection.
In the little island the aspirant to legislative honors has several
hundred constituencies from which to choose, or be chosen, while
in the larger America his political fortunes are usually bound
up in his own residence district.

Upon the roll of the House in the new Congress, called in
special session in March, 1879, in addition to some heretofore
mentioned, were names well known to the country.  Of these none is
more worthy of honorable mention than that of the Hon. Levi P.
Morton of New York.  In the business world his name was a synonym for
integrity.  The head of a great banking house, he was almost as
well known in the principal cities of Europe as in the great city of
his residence.  At the time of his first election to Congress
Mr. Morton was, by appointment of the President, an honorary
commissioner to the Paris Exposition.  At the close of his legislative
career he held successively the honored positions of Ambassador to
France, Vice-President of the United States, and Governor of New
York.  In Congress, Mr. Morton was the able representative of a
great constituency; as chief executive of his State his name is
worthy of mention with the most eminent of those who have been
called to that exalted station; as ambassador to a foreign court
the honor of his country was ever in safe keeping; as Vice-President,
he was the model presiding officer over the greatest deliberative body
known to men.

One of the brightest members of the New York delegation was the
Hon. James W. Covert of Flushing.  Altogether he served ten years in
the House, and became in time one of its leading members.  He was an
excellent lawyer, a delightful associate, and an able and ready debater.
That he was gifted with a touch of the humorous will appear from the
following.  The House was passing through the agony of an all-night
session.  Confusion reigned supreme.  During it all, Mr. Shelley, from
one of the Gulf States, stood at his desk and repeatedly made the point
of order upon Covert, Springer, Kenna, McKenzie, and others, as they
successively addressed the Chair, that "The gentleman is not speaking
from his desk."  The point of order was as repeatedly sustained by
the Speaker, the rules requiring members to address the Chair only
from their respective desks.  The confusion at length became so
great that many members, in their eagerness to be heard, pressed
to the front.  The voice of Mr. Shelley, however, was heard above the
din still calling for the enforcement of the rule; to which the
Speaker, his patience exhausted, now turned a deaf ear.  Desperate
beyond measure, Mr. Shelley at length _left his own desk,_ and
taking his position immediately in front of the clerk's desk fiercely
demanded, "Mr.  Speaker, I call for the enforcement of the rule."
At which Covert immediately exclaimed, "Mr. Speaker, I call for the
enforcement of _the rule in Shelley's case!"_

Almost directly in front of the Speaker's desk sat a gentleman,
small in stature, and of quiet dignified bearing, "The silent man,"
"whose voice was in his sword," General Joseph E. Johnston of
Virginia.  Until this, his first election to Congress from the
Capital District of the Old Dominion, he had known none other than
military public service.  He was a born soldier.  No one who saw
him could mistake his calling.  Napoleon did not more truly look
the soldier than did General Johnston.  A graduate of West Point, his
first service was in the Black Hawk War, and later in Mexico.  For
gallant conduct at the battle of Cerro Gordo, he was brevetted
colonel in the regular army.  His last service was when, as
Lieutenant-General of the Confederate Army, he surrendered to
Sherman, thus ending the great Civil War.  He had already reached the
allotted threescore years and ten when he entered Congress, and
its ordinary details apparently interested him but little.  He
earnestly desired the return of the era of good feeling between
the North and South, and upon his motion the House duly adjourned in
honor of the day set apart for the decoration of the graves of
Union soldiers.

No member of this House attracted more attention than did the Hon.
James A. McKenzie of Kentucky, the representative from what in
local parlance was known as "the pennyryle district."  He was
the youngest member of the body, tall, erect, and handsome.  Mr.
McKenzie rendered a valuable service to his constituents and the
country during this Congress, by securing the passage of a bill
placing quinine upon the free list.  His district was seriously
afflicted with the old-time fever and ague, and the reduction by
his bill to a nominal cost of the sure and only specific placed
his name high upon the list of benefactors.

Two of his kinsmen, one from Illinois, the other from Florida,
occupied seats immediately in his front.  Addressing them one day,
he said:  "It seems strange, indeed, that we three cousins--one
from Illinois, one from Florida, and one from Kentucky--are all
here together in Congress"; and then added, with apparent gravity,
"and _ours not an office-seeking family either!"_

As the session drew near its close, he made repeated efforts to
obtain unanimous consent for the consideration of a bill for the
erection of a Government building in the principal city of his
district.  The interposition of the stereotyped "I object" had,
however, in each instance, proved fatal.  During a night session, near
the close of the Congress, requests for recognition came to the
Speaker from all parts of the chamber.  In the midst of the tumult
Mr. McKenzie arose and, addressing the Chair, stated with great
solemnity of manner that he arose to a question of personal
privilege.  This at once arrested the attention of the Speaker,
and he requested the gentleman from Kentucky to state his question
of privilege.  "I rise, Mr. Speaker," said McKenzie, "to a question
of the _highest_ privilege, one pertaining to the right of a member
to a seat upon this floor--_in the next Congress._  If I don't get
that post-office bill through now, my seat will be imperilled.
I beg the House for unanimous consent for its immediate consideration."
The House was convulsed; no objection was interposed, the bill was
considered and passed, and McKenzie's seat was safe for many years
to come.

Has there ever been a more feeling two-minutes' speech, than that of
McKenzie in the National Convention of 1892, when he arose to second
the nomination of Cleveland?  After a night of intense excitement,
the convention was still in session at three o'clock in the morning.
A storm was raging without, while within, thousands in the great
hall were impatiently and loudly demanding an immediate vote.  More
than one of the chief orators of the party,--men well known to the
country--had in vain attempted to be heard.  Chaos seemed to
have come again at the crucial moment that McKenzie, standing upon
his chair in the centre of the vast enclosure, began:  "If I speak
longer than two minutes, I hope that some honest half-drowned
Democrat will suspend my carcass from one of the cross-beams of
this highly artistic, but terribly leaky auditorium.  Cleveland
needs no nomination from this convention.  He has already been
nominated by the people all along the line--all the way from
Hell Gate to Yuba Dam!"

The bedlam that now broke loose exceeded all that had gone before.
The uproar drowned the voice of the orator within, and even, for
the time, called a halt upon the raging elements without.  The
speech was never concluded.  What might have been the closing words
of McKenzie's speech, with such a beginning, can never be known.
The effect of his opening, however, was instantaneous.  It was the
immediate prelude to the overwhelming nomination of his candidate.

The Hon. John E. Kenna, of West Virginia, was just at the beginning
of a remarkably brilliant career.  He was under thirty years of
age when he first entered Congress.  At the close of his third term
in the House, he was elected to the United States Senate, and held
his seat in that body by successive elections until his death at
the early age of forty-four.  He possessed rare gifts as a speaker,
and was an active participant in many of the important debates
during that eventful period.  Senator Kenna was the beloved of his
State, and his early death brought sorrow to many hearts.

His manners were pleasing, and he was companionable to the last
degree.  He often related an amusing incident that occurred in the
convention that first nominated him for Congress.  His name was
presented by a delegate from the Crossroads in one of the mountain
counties, in substantially the following speech:  "Mr. President, I
rise to present to this convention, as a candidate for Congress,
the name of John E. Kenna--the peer, sir, _of no man_ in the State
of West Virginia."

Among the new members elected to this Congress was the Hon. Benjamin
Butterworth of Ohio.  His ability as a lawyer and his readiness in
debate soon gave him prominence, while his abundant good-nature
and inexhaustible fund of anecdotes made him a general favorite in
the House.  One of his stories was of a Western member whose daily
walk and conversation at the national Capital was by no means up
to the orthodox home standard.  The better element of his constituents
at length became disgusted, as reports derogatory to their member from
time to time reached them.  A bolt in the approaching Congressional
convention was even threatened, and altogether serious trouble was
brewing.  The demand was imperative upon the part of his closest
friends that he at once come home and face his accusers.  Homeward
he at length turned his footsteps, and was met at the depot by a
large concourse of his friends and constituents.  Hurriedly alighting
from the train and stepping upon the platform, with beaming
countenance and heart made glad by such an enthusiastic reception,
he thus began:

"Fellow-citizens, my heart is deeply touched as my eyes behold this
splendid assemblage of my constituents and friends gathered here
before and around me.  During my absence in Congress my friends
have spoken in my vindication.  I am here now to speak for myself.
Vile slanders have been put in circulation against me.  I have been
accused of being a defaulter; I have been accused of being a
drunkard; I have been accused of being a gambler; but, thank
God, fellow-citizens, _no man has ever dared to assail my good
moral character!"_

One incident is related by Butterworth of a judge in his State who,
becoming thoroughly disgusted with the ease with which naturalization
papers were obtained, determined upon a radical reform.  That
the pathway of the reformer--along this as other lines--was by
no means one of flowers will appear from the sequel.  Immediately upon
taking his seat, the judge, with great earnestness of manner,
announced from the bench that thereafter no applicant could receive
from that court his final papers, entitling him to the exercise of
the high privilege of citizenship, unless he was able to read
the Constitution of the United States.  A few mornings later,
Michael O'Connor, a well-known partisan of the Seventh Ward, appeared
in court accompanied by a diminutive-looking countryman, Dennis
Flynn by name.  Mr. O'Connor stated to the judge that his friend
Dennis Flynn had already taken out his first papers, and the legal
time had passed, and he now wanted His Honor to grant him his final
papers.  With much solemnity of manner the judge inquired whether
Mr. Flynn had ever read the Constitution of the United States.
Somewhat abashed by the unusual interrogatory, Mr. O'Connor looked
inquiringly at Mr. Flynn, at which the latter, wholly unconscious of
the purport of the inquiry, looked appealingly to Mr. O'Connor.
The latter then replied that he presumed he had not, at which
the judge, handing the applicant a copy of the revised statutes
containing the Constitution, admonished him to read it carefully.
Mr. Flynn, carrying the volume in his arms, and followed by his
patron, sadly left the court-room.  Just eight minutes elapsed,
the door suddenly opened and both reappeared, Mr. O'Connor in front,
bearing the book aloft, and exclaiming, "Dinnie couldn't rade it,
Your Honor, but I rid it over to him, _and he is parefictly deloighted
wid it!"_

Three gentlemen, each of whom at a later day reached the Speakership,
had served but a single term in the House at the opening of the
forty-sixth Congress:  Mr. Keifer of Ohio, Mr. Carlisle of Kentucky,
and Mr. Reed of Maine.  Mr. Keifer was a gentleman of ability and of
exceedingly courteous manners.  He took a prominent part in debate,
and was the immediate successor of Mr. Randall in the chair.  After
an absence of twenty years he has again been returned to his seat in
the House.

Few abler men than Mr. Carlisle have been in the public service.
He was a recognized leader of his party from his first appearance in
the House, and an authority upon all questions pertaining to tariff
or finance.  During his long service as Speaker he established
an enduring reputation as an able presiding officer; as possessing
in the highest degree "the cold neutrality of the impartial Judge."
While a Senator, he was appointed by President Cleveland to the
important position of Secretary of the Treasury.  The duties of
that great office have never been discharged with more signal

Mr. Reed stood alone.  He was unlike other men, a fact which probably
caused him little regret.  Self-reliant, aggressive, of will
indomitable, he was a political storm centre during his entire
public career.  His friends were devoted to him, and he was
never forgotten by his enemies.  Whoever was brought into close
contact with him, usually carried away an impression by which to
remember him.  Upon one occasion, in the House, when in sharp debate
with Mr. Springer, the latter quoted the familiar saying of Henry
Clay, "Sir, I would rather be right than be President."  Mr. Reed,
in a tone far from reassuring, retorted, "The gentleman from Illinois
_will never be either!"_

The retort courteous, however, was not always from the lips of the
Speaker.  Mr. Springer, having at one time repeatedly attempted,
but in vain, to secure the floor, at length demanded by what right
he was denied recognition.  The Speaker intimated that such ruling
was in accord with the high prerogative of the Chair.  To which
Springer replied:

  "Oh, it is excellent
  To have a giant strength; but 't is tyrannous
  To use it like a giant."

Of immense physical proportions, towering above his fellows,
with voice by no means melodious, a manner far from conciliatory, a
capacity for sarcastic utterance that vividly recalled the days of
John Randolph and Tristram Burgess, and, withal, one of the ablest
men of his generation, Mr. Reed was in very truth a picturesque
figure in the House of Representatives.  He apparently acted upon the
supposition of the philosopher Hobbes that war is the natural state
of man.  The kindly admonition,

  "Mend your ways a little
  Lest they may mar your fortunes,"

if ever given him, was unheeded.  In very truth,

  "He stood,
  As if a man were author of himself,
  And knew no other kin."

No man in his day was more talked of or written about.  At one time
his star was in the ascendent, and he seemed to be on the highroad
to the Presidency.  His great ambition, however, was thwarted by
those of his own political household.  At the close of a turbulent
session, while he was in the Chair, the usual resolution of thanks
to the Speaker "for the able, fair, and courteous manner in which he
had presided" was bitterly antagonized, and finally adopted only
by a strictly party vote.  It was an event with a single antecedent
in our history, that of seventy-odd years ago, when the Whig minority
in the House opposed the usual vote of thanks to Speaker Polk upon
his retirement from the Chair.  In the latter case, the cry of
persecution that was instantly raised had much to do with Mr. Polk's
almost immediate election to the Governorship of his State, and
his subsequent elevation to the Presidency.  The parallel incident
in Mr. Reed's career, however, failed to prove "the prologue to
the swelling act."

The Hon. William McKinley, of Ohio, was a member of this Congress.
He was one of the most pleasing and delightful of associates, and my
acquaintance with him was of the most agreeable character.  One of
his earliest official acts as President was my appointment as a
member of the Bimetallic Commission to Europe.

Mr. McKinley was in very truth one of Fortune's favorites:  five
times elected a member of the House of Representatives, three times
Governor of his State, and twice elevated to the Presidency.  He
was the third of our Presidents to fall by the hand of an assassin.
His tragic death is yet fresh in our memories.

The last time I met President McKinley was at the Peace Jubilee
Banquet at the Auditorium in Chicago, on the evening of October
19, 1898.  On this occasion, following the toast to the President of
the United States, I spoke as follows:

"The incumbent of this great office holds with unchallenged title the
most exalted station known to men.  Monarchs rule by hereditary
right, or hold high place only by force of arms.  The elevation of
a citizen to the Presidency of the United States is the deliberate
act, under the forms of law, of a sovereign people.  As an aspirant,
he may have been the choice only of a political party; as the
incumbent of the great office, he is the representative of all the
people--the President of all the people.  It augurs well for the
future of the Republic when the American people magnify this office;
when the honor, as now, the President who has so ably upheld its
dignity, so worthily met its solemn responsibilities, so patriotically
discharged its exacting and imperative duties.

"The office of President of a self-governing people is unique.  It
had no place in ancient or mediaeval schemes of government, whether
despotic, federative, or in name republican.  It has in reality
none amongst the nations of modern Europe.  The Presidency of
the United States, in the highest degree, represents the majesty
of the law.  It stands for the unified authority and power of
seventy-five millions of free men.  It typifies what is most sacred
to our race:  stability in government and protection to liberty
and life.  The President is the great officer to whom the founders of
the government entrusted the delicate and responsible function of
treating with foreign States; in whom was vested in time of peace and
of war, chief command of the army and of the navy.

"An eminent writer has well said:  'The ancient monarchs of France
reigned and governed; the Queen of England reigns but does not
govern; the President of France neither reigns nor governs; the
President of the United States does not reign, but governs!'

"Experience has demonstrated the more than human wisdom of the
framers of the great federal compact which for more than a century,
in peace and amid the stress of war, has held States and people in
indissoluble bond of union.  In no part of their matchless handiwork
has it been more clearly manifested than in the creation of a
responsible executive.  To secure in the largest measure the great
ends of government, responsibility must attach to the executive
office; and of necessity, with responsibility, _power._  The sooner
France learns from the American Republic this important lesson,
the sooner will government attain with her the stability to which it
is now a stranger.  Her statesmen might well recall the words of
Lord Bacon:  'What men will not alter for the better, Time, the
great innovator, will alter for the worse.'

"The splendid commonwealth in which we are assembled contains a
population a million greater than did the entire country at the
first inauguration of President Washington.  The one hundred and
nine years which have passed since that masterful hour in history have
witnessed the addition of thirty-two States to our federal Union, and
of seventy millions to our population.  And yet, with but few
amendments, our great organic law as fully meets the requirements
of a self-governing people to-day as when it came from the hands
of its framers.  The builders of the Constitution wisely ordained the
Presidential office a co-ordinate department of the Government.
Moving in its own clearly defined orbit, without usurpation or
lessening of prerogative, the great executive office, at the close
as at the beginning of the century, is the recognized constitutional
symbol of authority and of power.  The delegated functions and
prerogatives that pertained in our infancy and weakness have proved
ample in the days of our strength and greatness as a nation.

"It is well that to the people was entrusted the sovereign power
of choosing their chief magistrate.  It is our glory, in the
retrospect of more than a century, that none other than patriots
--statesmen well equipped for the discharge of its timeless duties
--have ever been chosen to the Presidency.  May we not believe that
the past is the earnest of the future, and that during the rolling
years and centuries the incumbents of the great office--the chosen
successors of Washington and of Lincoln--in the near and in the
remote future, will prove the guardians and defenders of the
Constitution, the guardians and defenders of the rights of all the

"Luminous will be the pages of history that tell to the ages the
story of our recent conflict, of its causes and of its results.
In brilliancy of achievement, the one hundred days war with Spain is
the marvel of the closing century.  It was not a war of our seeking.
It was the earnest prayer of all, from the President to the humblest
in private life, that the horrors of war might be averted.  Had
our ears remained deaf to the cry of the stricken and starving
at our doors, we would not have been guiltless in the high court
of conscience, and before the dread judgment seat of history.  The
plea 'Am I my brother's keeper?'--whether interposed by individual
or by nation--cannot be heard before the august tribunal of the

"Justified then, as we solemnly believe, in the sight of God for
our interposition, we rejoice over the termination of a struggle
in which our arms knew no defeat.  The dead hand of Spain has been
removed forever from the throats of her helpless victims.  Emphasizing
our solemn declaration as a nation, that this was a war for humanity,
not for self-aggrandizement, we demand no money indemnity from the
defeated and impoverished foe.

"The sacrifice of treasure and of blood has not been in vain.
However it may have been in the past, the United States emerges
from the conflict with Spain a united people.  Sectional lines are
forever obliterated.  Henceforth, for all time, we present to
foreign foe and unbroken front.  In the words of Webster:  'Our
politics go no farther than the water's edge.'

"No less important is the fact, that the United States of
America to-day, as never before, commands the respect and admiration
of the world.  No foreign coalition, however formidable, can excite
our serious apprehension or alarm.  For all this, all honor to our
brave soldiers and sailors; all honor to the helpful hands and
sympathetic hearts of America's patriotic women.

"As in the early morning and in the noon of the nineteenth century,
America gave to the world its best lessons in liberty and in
law, so in its closing hours, it has given to all the nations a
never-to-be-forgotten lesson in the dread art of war.  In quick
response to the splendid achievements of American valor comes from
across the sea the startling proposal of despotic Russia for the
disarmament of continental Europe--and in the end universal peace.

"Thankful to God for all he has vouchsafed to us in the past,
and with the prayer that henceforth peace may be the priceless boon
of all nations, we await the dawn of the new century, and turn our
faces hopefully to the future."



By the provisions of the Federal Constitution, a Vice-President of
the United States is elected at the same time, for the same term, and
in like manner as the President--by electors chosen in each of the
States.  A majority of the votes cast in the several electoral
colleges is necessary to an election.  The Vice-President is the
President of the Senate, and in the event of an equal division
in that body, he gives the deciding vote.  Under no other contingency
has he a vote.  The powers and duties of the office of President
devolve upon the Vice-President in case of the death, resignation,
or removal from office of the President.  The Vice-President is
included in the list of public officers liable to removal from
office on impeachment, on conviction for treason, bribery, or other
high crimes and misdemeanors.  By the twelfth amendment to the
Constitution no person constitutionally ineligible to the office
of President can be elected to that of Vice-President.  In the
event of a vacancy occurring in the office of Vice-President,
the Senate is presided over by a member of that body.  In such
contingency the death of the President would, under existing
law, devolve the office of President upon the Secretary of State.

Twenty-seven persons have held the office of Vice-President; the
dates of their respective elections are as follows:  John Adams of
Massachusetts, in 1788, re-elected in 1792; Thomas Jefferson of
Virginia, in 1796; Aaron Burr of New York, in 1800; George Clinton
of New York, in 1804, re-elected in 1808; Elbridge Gerry of
Massachusetts, in 1812; Daniel D. Tompkins of New York, in 1816,
re-elected in 1820; John C. Calhoun of South Carolina, in 1824,
re-elected in 1828; Martin Van Buren of New York, in 1832; Richard
M. Johnson of Kentucky, in 1836; John Tyler of Virginia, in
1840; George M. Dallas of Pennsylvania, in 1844; Millard Fillmore of
New York, in 1848; William R. King of Alabama, in 1852; John C.
Breckenridge of Kentucky, in 1856; Hannibal Hamlin of Maine, in
1860; Andrew Johnson of Tennessee, in 1864; Schuyler Colfax of
Indiana, in 1868; Henry Wilson of Massachusetts, in 1872; William A.
Wheeler of New York, in 1876; Chester A. Arthur of New York, in
1880; Thomas A. Hendricks of Indiana, in 1884; Levi P. Morton of
New York, in 1888; Adlai E. Stevenson of Illinois, in 1892; Garrett
A. Hobart of New Jersey, in 1896; Theodore Roosevelt of New York, in
1900; Charles W. Fairbanks of Indiana, in 1904; James S. Sherman
of New York, in 1908.

Four Vice-Presidents were subsequently elected Presidents, namely:
John Adams in 1796; Thomas Jefferson in 1800 and 1804; Martin
Van Buren in 1836; and Theodore Roosevelt in 1904.  The dates given
have reference to the election by vote of the electors in the
several States by whom the President and Vice-President were
subsequently chosen.  Six Vice-Presidents died in office:  namely,
Clinton, Gerry, King, Wilson, Hendricks, and Hobart.  In the
Presidential contest of 1836, Martin Van Buren received a majority
of the electoral votes for President, but no candidate received a
majority for Vice-President.  By Constitutional requirement the
duty of electing a Vice-President then devolved upon the Senate,
the candidates from whom such choice was to be made being restricted
to the two who had received the highest number of electoral votes.
One of these, Richard W. Johnson of Kentucky, was duly elected
by the Senate.  The only Vice-President who resigned the office
was John C. Calhoun.  This occurred in 1832, and Mr. Calhoun
soon thereafter took his seat in the Senate, to which body he
had been elected by the Legislature of South Carolina.

Five Vice-Presidents have, upon the death of the President, succeeded
to the Presidency.  The first President to die during his incumbency
of the great office, was William Henry Harrison.  His death occurred
April 4, 1841, just one month after his inauguration.  The
Vice-President John Tyler, then at his country home in Virginia, was
officially notified of the event, and upon reaching the seat of
Government at once took the oath of office as President.  There
was much discussion for a time in and out of Congress as to his
proper title, whether "Vice-President of the United States acting as
President," or "President."  The language of the Constitution
however, is clear, and it is no longer controverted that upon
the death of the President the Vice-President becomes, in name
as in fact, President.  Upon the death of President Zachary Taylor,
July 9, 1850, Vice-President Millard Fillmore succeeded to the
Presidency, and was at a later date an unsuccessful candidate
for election to that office.  The third Vice-President who reached
the Presidency by succession was Andrew Johnson; this occurred
April 15, 1865, the day following the assassination of President
Lincoln.  President Garfield was shot July 2, 1881, and died in
September of that year, when he was succeeded by Vice-President
Chester A. Arthur.  Vice-President Roosevelt was the successor
of President McKinley, who died by the hand of an assassin in
September, 1901.

Two attempts have been made to secure the impeachment of Presidents,
the incumbent in each instance having been elected Vice-President and
succeeded to the higher office upon the death of the President.
A resolution looking to the impeachment of President Tyler was
introduced into the House of Representatives in January, 1843, but
was defeated, and no further steps were taken.  Articles of
impeachment, for "high crimes and misdemeanors," were presented by
the House of Representatives against President Johnson in 1868.
By constitutional provision the trial was by the Senate, the Chief
Justice of the United States presiding.  Less than two-thirds of
the Senators voting for conviction, he was acquitted.

Until the adoption of the twelfth amendment, no Constitutional
provision existed for separate votes in the electoral colleges for
President and Vice-President; the candidate receiving the highest number
of votes (if a majority of all) became President, and the one
receiving the second highest, Vice-President.  In 1801, Jefferson and
Burr each received seventy-three electoral votes, and by
constitutional requirement the election at once devolved upon
the House of Representatives, voting by States.  On the thirty-sixth
ballot a majority of the States voting for Jefferson, he became
President, and Burr, Vice-President.  The Constitutional amendment
above indicated, by which separate ballots were required in the
electoral colleges for each office, was the result of the
intense excitement throughout the country engendered by this contest.
The earnest opposition of Alexander Hamilton to Aaron Burr in
the above-mentioned contest, was the prime cause of the duel by
which Hamilton lost his life at the hands of Burr in 1804.

George Clinton, the fourth Vice-President, had as a member of
the Continental Congress voted for the Declaration of Independence,
and held the rank of Brigadier-General during the War of the
Revolution.  The fifth Vice-President, Elbridge Gerry, had been
a prominent member of the Constitutional Convention of 1787.
William R. King, elected in 1852, by reason of ill health never
entered upon the discharge of the duties of his office.  By special
act of Congress, the oath of office was administered to him in Cuba
and his death occurred soon thereafter.  Of the twenty-seven
Vice-Presidents thus far elected, ten have been from the State
of New York.  Adams and Jefferson, the first and second
Vice-Presidents, rendered valuable service to the young Republic at
foreign courts; each by election was elevated to the Presidency; and
their deaths occurred upon the same historic Fourth of July,
just fifty years from the day they had signed the Declaration of

A marble bust of each of the Vice-Presidents has been placed in
the gallery of the Senate Chamber.  The office of Vice-President
is one of great dignity.  He is the presiding officer of the
most august legislative assembly known to men.  In the event of an
equal division in the Senate, he gives the deciding vote.  This
vote, many times in our history, has been one of deep significance.
It will readily be seen that the contingency may often occur when the
Vice-President becomes an important factor in matters of

On the occasion of the writer's retirement from office, March 4,
1897, he delivered the following farewell address before the Senate:

"Senators:  The hour has arrived which marks the close of the
fifty-fourth Congress, and terminates my official relation to this

"Before laying down the gavel for the last time, I may be pardoned
for detaining you for a moment, in the attempt to give expression to
my gratitude for the uniform courtesy extended me, for the many
kindnesses shown me, during the time it has been my good fortune
to preside over your deliberations.  My appreciation of the Resolution
of the Senate personal to myself, can find no adequate expression in
words.  Intentionally, I have at no time given offence; and I carry
from this presence no shadow of feeling of unkindness toward any
Senator, no memory of any grievance.

"Chief among the favors political fortune has bestowed upon me,
I count that of having been the associate--and known something
of the friendship--of the men with whom I have so long held official
relation in this chamber.  To have been the presiding officer of
this august body is an honor of which even the most illustrious
citizen might be proud.  I am persuaded that no occupant of this
Chair, during the one hundred and eight years of our Constitutional
history, ever entered upon the discharge of the duties pertaining to
this office more deeply impressed with a sense of the responsibilities
imposed, or with a higher appreciation of the character and dignity
of the great Legislative Assembly.

"During the term just closing, questions of deep import to political
parties and to the country have here found earnest and at times
passionate discussion.  This Chamber has indeed been the arena
of great debate.  The record of four years of parliamentary struggles,
of masterful debates, of important legislation, is closed, and
passes now to the domain of history.

"I think I can truly say, in the words of a distinguished predecessor,
'In the discharge of my official duties, I have known no cause, no
party, no friend.'  It has been my earnest endeavor justly to
interpret, and faithfully to execute, the rules of the Senate.  At
times the temptation may be strong to compass partisan ends by a
disregard or a perversion of the rules.  Yet, I think it safe to
say, the result, however salutary, will be dearly purchased by a
departure from the method prescribed by the Senate for its own
guidance.  A single instance, as indicated, might prove the forerunner
of untold evils.

  ''T will be recorded for a precedent,
  And many an error by the same example
  Will rush into the State.'

"It must not be forgotten that the rules governing this body are
founded deep in human experience; that they are the result of
centuries of tireless effort in legislative hall, to conserve,
to render stable and secure, the rights and liberties which have
been achieved by conflict.  By its rules, the Senate wisely fixes the
limits to its own power.  Of those who clamor against the Senate
and its mode of procedure it may be truly said, 'They know not what
they do.'  In this Chamber alone are preserved, without restraint,
two essentials of wise legislation and of good government--the
right of amendment and of debate.  Great evils often result from
hasty legislation, rarely from the delay which follows full
discussion and deliberation.  In my humble judgment, the historic
Senate, preserving the unrestricted right of amendment and of
debate, maintaining intact the time-honored parliamentary methods and
amenities which unfailingly secure action after deliberation,
possesses in our scheme of government a value which can not be
measured by words.  The Senate is a perpetual body.  In the
terse words of an eminent Senator now present:  'The men who framed
the Constitution had studied thoroughly all former attempts at
Republican government.  History was strewn with the wrecks of
unsuccessful democracies.  Sometimes the usurpation of the executive
power, sometimes the fickleness and unbridled license of the people,
had brought popular governments to destruction.  To guard against these
dangers, they placed their chief hope in the Senate.  The Senate
which was organized in 1789, at the inauguration of the Government,
abides and will continue to abide, one and the same body, until
the Republic itself shall be overthrown, or time shall be no more.'

"Twenty-four Senators who have occupied seats in this Chamber during
my term of office are no longer members of this body.  Five of that
number--Stanford, Colquitt, Vance, Stockbridge, and Wilson--
'shattered with the contentions of the Great Hall,' full of years and
of honors have passed from earthly scenes.  The fall of the
gavel will conclude the long and honorable terms of service of
other Senators, who will be borne in kind remembrance by their
associates who remain.

"I would do violence to my feelings if I failed to express my thanks
to the officers of this body for the fidelity with which they have
discharged their important duties, and for the kindly assistance
and unfailing courtesy of which I have been the recipient.

"For the able and distinguished gentleman who succeeds me as
your presiding officer, I earnestly invoke the same co-operation
and courtesy which you have so generously accorded me.

"Senators, my parting words have been spoken, and I now discharge my
last official duty, that of declaring the Senate adjourned without



It is a well-known fact in our political history that the convention
which formulated our Federal Constitution greatly exceeded the
powers delegated to its members by their respective States.  It
was the supreme moment, and upon the action of the historic assemblage
depended events of far-reaching consequence.  The Constitution
of the United States is the enduring monument to the courage, the
forecast, the wisdom of the members of the Convention of 1787.  It
was theirs to cut the Gordian knot, to break with the past, and,
regardless of the jealousies and antagonisms of individual States,
to establish the more perfect union, which has been declared by an
eminent British statesman "the greatest work ever struck off at
a given time from the brain and purpose of man."

The oft-quoted expression of Gladstone is, however, more rhetorical
than accurate.  The Constitution of the United States was not
"struck off at a given time," but as declared by Bancroft, "the
materials for its building were the gifts of the ages."  In the
words of Lieber, "What the ancients said of the avenging gods, that
they were shod with wool, is true of great ideas in government.
They approach slowly.  Great truths dwell a long time with small

The period following the treaty of peace with Great Britain in
1783, which terminated the War of the Revolution, has been not
inaptly designated "the critical period of American history."  The
Revolutionary Government, under which Washington had been chosen
to the chief command of the colonial forces, the early battles
fought, and the Declaration of Independence promulgated, had
been superseded in 1781 by a Government created under the Articles
of Confederation.  The latter Government, while in a vital sense
a mere rope of sand, was a long step in the right direction; the
earnest of the more perfect union yet to follow.

Under the Government, more shadowy than real, thus created, the
closing battles of the Revolution were fought, independence achieved,
a treaty of peace concluded, and our recognition as a sovereign
Republic obtained from our late antagonist and other European

The Articles of Confederation, submitted for ratification by the
Colonial Congress to the individual States while the country was
yet in the throes of a doubtful struggle, fell far short of
establishing what in even crude form could properly be designated a
Government.  The Confederation was wholly lacking in one essential
of all Governments:  the power to execute its own decrees.  Its
avowed purpose was to establish "a firm league of friendship," or,
as the name indicates, a mere confederation of the colonies.
The parties to this league were independent political communities,
and by express terms, each State was to retain all rights, sovereignty,
and jurisdiction not expressly delegated to the Confederation.  In
a Congress consisting of a single House were vested the powers thus
grudgingly conferred.  Its members were to be chosen by the States
as such; upon every question the vote was given by States, each,
regardless of population, having but a single vote.  The revenues and
the regulation of foreign commerce were to remain under the control
of the respective States, and no provision was made for borrowing
money for the necessary maintenance of the general Government.  In
a word, in so far as a Government at all, it was in the main one
of independent States, and in no sense that with which we are
familiar, a Government of the entire people.  Whatever existed
of executive power was in a committee of the Congress; the only
provision for meeting the expenses of the late war and the interest
upon the public debt was by requisition upon the States, with no
shadow of power for its enforcement.

Under the conditions briefly mentioned, with the United States
of America a byword among the nations, the now historic Convention
of 1787 assembled in Philadelphia, in the room where eleven
years earlier had been promulgated the Declaration of Independence.
It consisted of fifty-five members; and without a dissenting voice,
Washington, a delegate from Virginia, was elected its President.
Not the least of his public services was now to be rendered in the
work of safeguarding the fruits of successful revolution by a stable
Government.  Chief among the associates with whom he was daily
in earnest, anxious counsel in the great assemblage, were men whose
names live with his in history.  If Franklin, Wilson, Sherman,
King, Randolph, Rutledge, Mason, Pinckney, Hamilton, Madison,
and their associates had rendered no public service other than
as builders of the Constitution, that alone would entitle them
to the measureless gratitude of all future generations of their

When they were assembled, the startling fact was at once apparent that,
under the Confederation, with its constituent States at times in
almost open hostility to one another, the country was gradually
drifting into a condition of anarchy.

It is our glory to-day, and will be that of countless on-coming
generations, that the men of '87 were equal to the stupendous
emergency.  Regardless of instructions, expressed or implied,
the master spirits of the Convention, looking beyond local prejudices
and State environment, and appealing to time for vindication, with
a ken that now seems more than human, discerned the safety, the
well-being, the glory of their countrymen, bound up in a general
Government of plenary powers, a Government "without a seam in its
garment, to foreign nations."

To this end the proposition submitted by Paterson of New Jersey,
in the early sittings of the Convention, for a mere enlargement of
the powers of the Confederation, was decisively rejected.  With
the light that could be gleaned from the pages of Montesquieu, the
suggestive lessons to be drawn from the fate of the short-lived
republics whose wrecks lay along the pathway of history, and from the
unwritten Constitution of the mother country, as their only guides,
the leaders of the Convention were at once in the difficult role
of constructive statesmen.  The Herculean task to which with
unwearied effort they now addressed themselves was that of "builders"
of the Constitution; the establishers, for the ages, of the
fundamental law for a free people.

One of the perils which early beset the Convention, and whose
spectre haunted its deliberations till the close, was the hostility
engendered by the dread and jealousy of the smaller toward the
larger States.  This fact will in some measure explain what in
later years have been denominated the anomalies of the Constitution.
To a correct understanding of the motives of the builders, and
an appreciation of their marvellous accomplishment, it must not be
forgotten that "The foundations of the Constitution were laid in
compromise."  The men of '87 had but recently emerged from the
bloody conflict through which they had escaped the domination of
kingly power.  With the tyranny of George the Third yet burning in
their memories, it is not to be wondered that the Revolutionary
patriots of the less populous States were loath to surrender rights,
deemed, by them, secure under their local governments; that they
dreaded the establishment of what they apprehended might prove
an overshadowing--possibly unlimited--central authority.

The creation of a general Government, with its three separate
and measurably independent departments, happily concluded, with
the delegated powers of each distinctly enumerated, the salient
question as to the basis of representation in the Congress at once
pressed for determination.  Upon the question of provision for a
chief executive, and his investment with the powers necessarily
incident to the great office, there was after much debate a practical
consensus of opinion.  And practical unanimity in the end prevailed
regarding the judicial department, with its great court without
a prototype at its creation, and even yet without a counterpart in
foreign Governments.

The rock upon which the Convention barely escaped early dissolution,
was the basis of representation in the Congress created under
the great co-ordinate legislative department.  The model for our
Senate and House of Representatives was unquestionably the British
Parliament.  This statement is to be taken with weighty qualifications;
for hereditary or ecclesiastical representation, as in the House
of Lords, is wholly unknown in our system of government.  The
significant resemblance is that of our Lower House to the
British Commons.  In these respective chambers, the people, as
such, have representation.

The earnest, at times violent, contention of the smaller States,
in our historic Convention, was for equal representation in both
branches of the proposed national legislature.  This was strenuously
resisted by the larger States under the powerful leadership of
Madison of Virginia, and Wilson of Pennsylvania.  Their equally
earnest, and by no means illogical contention was for popular
representation in each House, as outlined in the Virginia plan
which had been taken as the framework of the proposed Constitution.
The opposing views appeared wholly irreconcilable, and for a time the
parting of the ways seemed to have been reached.  Threats of
dissolution were not uncommon in the Chamber, and for many days
the spirit of despair brooded over the Convention.  A delegate from
Maryland vehemently declared:  "The Convention is on the verge
of dissolution, scarcely held together by the strength of a hair."
Well has it been said:  "In even the contemplation of the fearful
consequence of such a calamity, the imagination stands aghast."

At the crucial moment mentioned, Sherman and Ellsworth presented
upon behalf of Connecticut the first and most far-reaching of
the great compromises of the Constitution.  The Connecticut plan
was in brief to the effect that in fixing the ratio of representation
there should be recognition alike of the federal and of the national
feature in government, in a word, that in the Lower House the
national, and in the upper the federal principle should have
full recognition.  This was a departure from the Virginia plan
to the extent that it in effect proposed the establishment of a
federal republic,--in the concrete, that the House should be composed
of representatives chosen directly by the people from districts of
equal population; while representation in the Senate should be that
of the States, each, regardless of population, to have two members,
to be chosen at stated periods by their respective legislatures.

After heated debate, this compromise was carried by a bare majority,
and the provision for popular representation in the House, and
equal State representation in the Senate, became engrafted upon
our Federal Constitution.  This feature, an eminent foreign writer has
declared, "is the chief American contribution to the common treasures
of political civilization."  The eminent writer, De Tocqueville,
has well said:  "The principle of the independence of the States
triumphed in the formation of the Senate, and that of the sovereignty
of the nation in the composition of the House of Representatives."

The success of the Connecticut plan made possible that of other
essential compromises which followed; and the result was, as the
sublime consummation of wise deliberation and patriotic concession,
the establishment of the Government of the United States.

It is the proud boast of the Briton, that "the British Constitution
has no single date from which its duration is to be reckoned,
and that the origin of English law is as undiscoverable as that of
the Nile."  Our Government, buttressed upon a written Constitution
of enumerated and logically implied powers, had its historic
beginning upon that masterful day, April 30, 1789, when Washington
took solemn oath of office as our first President.

The Senate of the United States has been truly declared "the greatest
deliberative body known to men."  By Constitutional provision it
consists of two members from each State, chosen by the Legislature
thereof, for the term of six years.  No person has the legal
qualification for Senator "unless he shall have attained the age
of thirty years, be an inhabitant of the State for which he is
chosen, and have been nine years a citizen of the United States."
No State, without its consent, can ever be deprived, even by
Constitutional amendment, of its equal representation in the Senate.
Nevada with a population of less than forty thousand has her equal
voice with New York with a population exceeding seven million.
This anomaly was occasioned by concession by the larger to the
smaller States in the Convention of 1787, a concession which
made possible the establishment of the federal Union.

One essential difference between the House of Representatives
and the Senate is that to the latter "the previous question" is
unknown; no method existing for terminating debate, other than
by unanimous consent.  Here, unlimited discussion and amendment
can have their perfect work.  Within the last three or four decades
many fruitless attempts have been made to introduce a modified
"previous question" or _cloture,_ by which the Senate could be
brought to an immediate vote.  At first blush such change might
seem desirable, but experience has demonstrated the wisdom of
the method to which there has been such steady adherence.  It
secures time for consideration and full discussion upon every
question.  In the end the vote will be taken.  Debate is rarely
prolonged beyond reasonable limit.  Not infrequently the public
welfare is imperilled by too much, rather than too little, legislation.
It was the belief of Jefferson that government should touch the
citizen at the fewest possible points.  The quaint lines of the
old English poet have lost nothing of their significance:

  "How small, of all that human hearts endure,
  That part which laws or kings can cause or cure!"

The House of Representatives has in large degree ceased to be a
deliberative body.  Under the iron rule of the "previous question"
measures of importance are hurriedly passed without the possibility
of discussion or amendment.  The rights of the minority are at
times but as the dust in the balance.

Unlike the House of Lords, the Senate is in reality an important
factor in legislation.  As is well known in recent years, government
in Great Britain is virtually that of the House of Commons, in
large measure through a cabinet practically of its own appointment.
The King is little more than a ceremonial figure-head, and the
House of Lords is almost in a death struggle for existence.  The
end would probably come by serious attempt upon its part to thwart
the popular will as expressed through the House of Commons.  The
power of Edward the Seventh is but a shadow of that exercised almost
without let or hindrance by the predecessors of Queen Victoria.
The veto power, so potent an instrumentality in the hands of the
American President, is to all intents a dead letter in the mythical
British Constitution.  For a century and a half it has remained in
practical abeyance.  It is believed that its attempted exercise at
this day would produce revolution; possibly endanger the existence
of the throne.

By means of what is known as a suspension of the rules, under
the operation of the "previous question," much important legislation
is enacted in our House of Representatives, without the minority
having the privilege of debate, or amendment, or even the necessary
time to a full understanding of the pending measure.  The constantly
recurring "River and Harbor Bill," with its enormous sum total
of appropriations, is a striking object lesson of the vicious
character of such methods.

In the light of what has been suggested, the wisdom displayed in
the establishment of the bicameral, or two-chamber system, in
our legislative scheme, is strikingly apparent.  At the time of
its creation, it had no counterpart in any of the Governments of
continental Europe.  Its only prototype, in so far as it was such,
was the British House of Lords as already indicated.

Save only in the right to originate revenue bills, the power of
the Senate is concurrent with that of the House in all matters
of legislation; and these are wisely subject to amendment by the
Senate.  The presiding officer of the Senate is the Vice-President
of the United States, and in his absence a Senator chosen as
President _pro tempore._

In the event of a failure on the part of the people to elect a
President or a Vice-President of the United States, through electors
duly appointed at the stated time, the duty of such election devolves
upon the House and the Senate acting independently of each other.
The choice of President is limited to the three candidates who have
received the highest number of votes in the several electoral
colleges.  The determination is by the House of Representatives,
the vote being by States.  In such event the vote of Nevada
would again count equally with that of New York.  In the contingency
mentioned, of a failure to elect a Vice-President, the election
devolves upon the Senate, each Senator having a personal vote; and
the person chosen must by Constitutional requirement be one of the
two receiving the highest number of electoral votes.  In 1836, Mr.
Van Buren of New York received a majority of the electoral votes
for President; but no person receiving a majority for the second
office, Colonel Richard M. Johnson, of Kentucky, one of the two
persons eligible, was chosen by the Senate.  No similar instance
has occurred in our history.

In the Presidential election of 1800, and in that of 1824, the
ultimate determination was by the House of Representatives.  In
the former, Jefferson and Burr each received seventy-three electoral
votes, without specification as to whether intended for the first or
second office.  The protracted struggle which followed resulted in
the choice of Jefferson for the higher office.  This fortunate
termination was in large measure through the influence of Alexander
Hamilton, and was the initial step in the bitter personal strife
which eventuated in his early death at the hands of Burr.  In
the light of events, we may well believe that not the least of the
public services of Hamilton was his unselfish interposition at the
critical moment mentioned.  The possibility of similar complication
again arising in the election of the President was soon thereafter
obviated by the Twelfth Amendment to the Constitution.

Seldom in Presidential contests has there been such an array of
great names presented as in that of 1824.  The era of good feeling
which characterized the administration of Monroe found sudden
termination in the rival candidacy of two members of his cabinet, for
the succession--Mr. Adams, Secretary of State, and Mr. Crawford, of
the Treasury.  The other aspirants were Clay, the brilliant Speaker
of the House of Representatives, and Jackson, with laurels yet
fresh from the battlefield of New Orleans.  Mr. Clay receiving the
smallest number of electoral votes, and no candidate the
majority thereof, the selection again devolved upon the House,
resulting eventually in the choice of John Quincy Adams.

In the two Presidential contests last mentioned, the Senate had no
part in the final adjustment.  An occasion, however, arose nearly a
half-century later, involving the succession to the Presidency, in
which the Senate, equally with the House, was an important factor in
the final determination.  The country has known few periods of
profounder anxiety to thoughtful men, or of greater peril to stable
government, than the feverish hours immediately succeeding the
Presidential contest of 1876.  The shadow cast by the Hayes-Tilden
contest even yet, in a measure, lingers.  As a Representative in
Congress at the time, I was deeply impressed with the gravity of
the situation.  In the instances first mentioned it was the mere
question of the failure of any candidate to receive a majority
of the electoral votes.  The framers of the Constitution had wisely
provided for such contingency by action of the House in manner
indicated.  The far more serious question now confronting was, For
whom had the disputed States of Florida and Louisiana cast their
votes?  The settlement of this question virtually determined which
candidate should be inaugurated President.  Conflicting certificates
from the States named had been forwarded to the seat of government,
and were in keeping of the officer designated by law as the custodian
of the electoral returns from the several States.  The contingency
which had now arisen was one for which there was no provision.
The sole function of the joint session of the Senate and the House
was "to open all the certificates and count the votes."  This
was "the be all and end all" of its authority.  Upon the arising
of any question demanding a vote, or even deliberation, the members
of the joint session could only return to their separate chambers.
They could act only in their separate capacities.  In a word,
the perilous exigency presented was, the friends of one candidate having
a majority in the Senate, and of the other in control of the House;
conflicting certificates presented, upon which hinged the result, and
the tension throughout the entire country assuming alarming
proportions.  Coupled with the question of peaceable succession to
the great office was that of the durability of popular government.
Tremendous issues, upon which depended unfathomable consequences, pressed
for settlement; and no tribunal was in existence for their

The sober second thought of those upon whom was then cast the
responsibility asserted itself at the opportune moment, and a
commission consisting of an equal number of Senators, Representatives,
and Judges of the Great Court was created.  This commission--
extra-Constitutional, as was believed by many--decided as to the
validity of the conflicting certificates, and in effect determined
as to the Presidential succession.

The justification of the act creating the commission might well
rest upon the fact that an overshadowing emergency had arisen,
where necessity becomes the paramount law.  "The pendulum of history
swings in centuries," and a single term of the great office weighed
little in view of the perils that surely awaited a failure to secure
peaceful adjustment.

I may be pardoned for adding that in the retrospect of a life,
no longer a short one, I have no regrets that my humble voice
and vote were given for peaceable and lawful adjustment of a perilous
controversy, that cast its dark shadow across our national pathway
--such a one, as, please God, our country may never witness again.

Unquestionably the least satisfactory of the devices of our Federal
Constitution is that for the election of President and Vice-President
through the instrumentality of colleges of electors chosen by
the several States.  Upon this subject notes of warning have
been many times sounded by eminent statesmen of the past.  In view
of the hazardous complications through which we have happily passed,
and of those which may possibly beset our future pathway as a
nation, it would indeed be the part of wisdom, if by Constitutional
amendment a less complicated and cumbrous instrumentality could be
devised for ascertaining and making effective the popular will
in the selection of President and Vice-President of the United

One of the apprehensions of the framers of the Constitution was
that of executive usurpation of functions lawfully pertaining to
the co-ordinate department of the Government.  This was measurably
guarded against by the provision requiring appointment to high
office to be by and with the advice and consent of the Senate.
While the President by the exercise of the veto power possesses
a negative upon legislation, the Senate by virtue of the provision
quoted has an equally effective negative upon executive appointments
to important office.

To the President is confided primarily the treaty-making power.
Treaties are the law of the land, and their observance in spirit
as well as letter touches the national honor.  Upon this often
depends the issue of peace or war.  Before becoming effective their
ratification by a two-thirds vote of the Senate is indispensable.
From these and other safeguards strikingly appear what are known
as "the checks and balances" of the Constitution.

An important function of the Senate yet to be mentioned is that of
sitting as a high court of impeachment.  The President, Vice-President,
and other high officials are amenable to its jurisdiction.  The
initial step, however, in such procedure is by the House of
Representatives, as the grand inquest of the nation, presenting
articles of impeachment, the Senate possessing the sole power of
trial.  Six times only in our history has the Senate been resolved
into a Court of Impeachment, and only twice--in the case of district
judges--has there been a conviction.  The earliest trial, more than
a century ago, was that of a supreme justice, Chase of Maryland.
Apart from the high official position of the accused, and the august
tribunal before which he was arraigned, this trial is of
historic interest from the fact that it involved the once famous
Alien and Sedition Laws; that John Randolph was chief of the managers
on the part of the House; Pinckney, Martin, and William Wirt of
counsel for the defence; and Vice-President Aaron Burr, the presiding
officer of the court.

The trial of Belknap, Secretary of War, is still within the memory
of many.  As a member of the House, I attended it from the beginning.
It appearing from the evidence that Belknap had resigned his office
before the presentation of the articles of impeachment, he was
acquitted.  The fate of General Belknap was indeed a sad one, that
of a hitherto honorable career suddenly terminated under a cloud.
Morally guiltless himself, his chivalric assumption of responsibility
for the act of one near to him, and his patiently abiding the
consequence, has invested with something of pathos, and even romance,
the memory of his trial.

An impeachment that has left its deep impress upon history, and
before which all others pale into insignificance, was that of
President Johnson, charged by the House of Representatives with
the commission of "high crimes and misdemeanors."  He had been
elected to the second place upon the ticket with Mr. Lincoln in
1864, and upon the death of the latter, succeeded to the Presidency.
Radical differences with the majority in the Congress, upon questions
vital and far-reaching, ultimately culminated in the presentation of
articles of impeachment.  Partisan feeling was at its height,
and the excitement throughout the country intense.  The trial
was protracted for many weeks without jot or tittle of abatement
in the public interest.  The chief managers on the part of the
House were Benjamin F. Butler and Thaddeus Stevens.  The array
of counsel for the accused included the names of Benjamin R. Curtis,
Henry Stanberry, and William M. Evarts.  The Senate, in its high
character of a court, was presided over for the first and only time
by the Chief Justice of the United States.  The trial was conducted
with marked decorum; every phase of questions touching the exercise
of executive authority, or lawful discretion, was fully discussed,
the very springs of legislative power, and its limitation under
Constitutional government, were laid bare--all with an eloquence
unparalleled save only in the wondrous efforts of Sheridan, Fox,
and Burke in the historic impeachment of Warren Hastings before
the British House of Lords.  The spectacle presented was one
that challenged the attention and wonder of the nations; that of
the chief magistrate of a great republic at the bar of justice,
calmly awaiting judgment without popular disturbance or attempted revolt,
under the safeguards of law and its appointments.  The highest test
of the virtue of our system of representative government, and of
the unfaltering devotion of our people to its prescribed methods, is
to be found in the fact, that during the protracted trial the
various departments proceeded with wonted regularity; the verdict of
the Senate was acquiesced in without manifestation of hostility;
partisan passion soon abated and the great impeachment peaceably
relegated to the domain of history.

The House of Representatives has an official life of short duration.
Its reorganization is biennial.  The Senate is enduring.  Always
organized, it is the continuing body of our national legislature.
Its members change, but the Senate continues the same now, as in
the first hour of the Republic.

In his last great speech in the Senate, Mr. Webster said:

"It is fortunate that there is a Senate of the United States; a
body not yet moved from its propriety, not lost to a full sense of
its own dignity and its own high responsibilities, and a body to
which the country looks with confidence for wise, moderate, patriotic,
and healing counsels."

Upon the first assembling of the Senate in its present magnificent
chamber nearly half a century ago, the Vice-President closed his
eloquent dedicatory address with the words:

"Though these marble walls moulder into ruins, the Senate in another
age may bear into a new and larger chamber the Constitution vigorous
and inviolate, and the last generation of posterity shall witness the
deliberations of the representatives of American States still
united, prosperous, and free."



February 12, 1909, will long be remembered as the day of the
celebration of the hundredth anniversary of the birth of Abraham
Lincoln.  For on that day was the culmination of a celebration
which, in various parts of the country, had begun at least a
week before.  Rarely has there been an occasion of so much decoration,
so many addresses, or so much patriotism.  The largest celebration
occurred in New York City, but that of Chicago, if not so large,
was at least as interesting and impressive, for in it and surrounding
parts of Illinois some of the most memorable events in the life of
Lincoln took place.  Yet these manifestations were not a whit more
patriotic than those of many small towns and villages.

Every hamlet, every town, and every city of the United States seemed
to be imbued with a desire to do honor to the memory of the man
Lincoln.  Every newspaper and every magazine of whatever name or
order was filled with pictures, anecdotes, and sketches of the life
of "Honest Abe."  Books galore were published emphasizing every
phase of his life, character, work, and influence; and they sold

My contribution to this occasion was the following speech delivered
at Bloomington, Illinois, February 12:

"We have assembled to commemorate one of the epoch-making events
in history.  In the humblest of homes in the wilds of a new and
sparsely settled State, Abraham Lincoln was born one hundred years
ago, this day.

"The twelfth day of February, like the twenty-second day of the
same month, is one of the sacred days in the American calendar.
It is well that this day be set apart from ordinary uses, the
headlong rush in the crowded mart suspended, the voice of fierce
contention in legislative halls be hushed, and that the American
people--whether at home, in foreign lands, or upon the deep--honor
themselves by honoring the memory of the man of whose birth this
day is the first centennial.

"This coming together is no idle ceremony, no unmeaning observance.
To this man, more than to any other, are we indebted for the supreme
fact that ninety millions of people are at this hour, in the loftiest
sense of the expression, fellow-citizens of a common country.  Some
of us, through the mists of half a century, distinctly recall
the earnest tones in which Mr. Lincoln in public speech uttered
the words, 'My fellow-citizens.'  Truly the magical words
'fellow-citizens' never fail to touch a responsive chord in the
patriotic heart.  Was it the gifted Prentiss who at a critical
moment of our history exclaimed:

"'For whether upon the Sabine or the St. John's; standing in
the shadow of Bunker Hill or amid the ruins of Jamestown; near
the great northern lakes or within the sound of the Father of
Waters flowing unvexed to the sea; in the crowded mart of the
great metropolis or upon the western verge of the continent,
where the restless tide of emigration is stayed only by the
ocean--everywhere upon this broad domain, thank God, I can still
say "fellow-citizens"!'

"Let us pause for a moment and briefly note some of the marvellous
results wrought out by the toil, strife, and sacrifice of the
century whose close we commemorate.  The Year of Our Lord 1809 was
one of large place in history.  The author of the Declaration of
Independence was upon the eve of final retirement from public place,
and the Presidential term of James Madison just beginning, when in
a log cabin near the western verge of civilization the eyes of
Abraham Lincoln first opened upon the world.  The vast area
stretching from the Rocky Mountains to the Pacific Ocean was under
the dominion of Spain.  Two decades only had passed since the
establishment of the United States Government under the Federal
Constitution, and the inauguration of Washington as its first
President.  Lewis and Clark had but recently returned from the now
historic expedition to the Columbia and the Oregon,--an expedition
fraught with momentous consequences to the oncoming generations of
the Republic.  Only five years had passed since President Jefferson
had purchased, for fifteen millions of dollars from Napoleon
Bonaparte, the Louisiana country, extending from the Gulf of Mexico
to the frozen lakes, out of which were to be carved sixteen
magnificent States to become enduring parts of the American
Republic.  From the early Colonial settlements that fringed the
Atlantic, a tide of hardy emigration was setting in to the westward,
and, regardless of privation or danger, laying the sure foundation
of future commonwealths.  Four States only had been admitted into the
Federal Union, and the population of the entire country was less
than that of the State of New York to-day.  This same year witnessed
the first organization of Illinois into a distinct political
community and its creation, by act of Congress, as the Territory
of Illinois, with a white population less than one-twentieth of
that of this good county to-day.  The United States having
barely escaped a war with France,--our ally in securing our
independence,--was earnestly struggling for distinct place among
the nations.

"No less significant, and fraught with deep consequences, were
events occurring in the Old Worlds.  The year 1809 witnessed the
birth of Darwin and Gladstone.  The despotism of the Dark Ages
still brooded over Continental Europe, and whatever savored of
popular public rule--even in its mildest form--was yet in the
distant future.  Alexander the First was on the throne of Russia,--
and her millions of serfs were oppressed as by the iron hand of
the Caesars.  The splendid German Empire of to-day had no place on
the map of the world; its present powerful constituencies were
antagonistic provinces and warring independent cities.  Napoleon
Bonaparte--'calling Fate into the lists'--by a succession of
victories unparalleled in history had overturned thrones, compelled
kings upon bended knee to sue for peace, and substituted those
of his own household for dynasties that reached back the entire
length of human history.  With his star still in the ascendant,
disturbed by no forecast of the horrid nightmare of the retreat
from Moscow, 'with legions scattered by the artillery of the snows
and the cavalry of the winds,' tortured by no dream of Leipsic, of
Elba, of Waterloo, of St. Helena, he was still the 'man of destiny,'
--relentlessly pursuing the _ignis fatuus_ of universal empire.

"The year that witnessed the birth of Abraham Lincoln witnessed
the gathering of the disturbing elements that were to precipitate the
second war with the mother country.  England--with George the Third
still upon the throne--by insulting and cruel search of American
vessels upon the high seas, was rendering inevitable the declaration
of war by Congress,--a war of humiliation upon our part by the
disgraceful surrender of Hull at Detroit and the wanton burning of
our Capitol, but crowned with honor by the naval victories of
Lawrence, Decatur, and Perry, and eventually terminated by the
capture of the British army at New Orleans.  As an object lesson
of the marvels of the closing century, an event of such momentous
consequence to the world as the formulation of the Treaty of Ghent,
by which peace was restored between England and America, would to-day
be known at every fireside a few hours after its occurrence.  And yet,
within the now closing century, the battle of New Orleans was fought
twenty-three days after the Treaty of Ghent, coming by slow-sailing
vessels across the Atlantic, had received the signature of our
commissioners; all unsettled accounts squared eternally between America
and Great Britain; and the United States, by valor no less than by
diplomacy, exalted to honored and enduring place among the nations.

"The fifty-six years that compassed the life of Abraham Lincoln
were years of transcendent significance to our country.  While
he was yet in his rude cradle the African slave trade had just
terminated by constitutional inhibition.  While Lincoln was still in
attendance upon the old field school, Henry Clay--yet to be known as
the 'great pacificator'--was pressing the admission of Missouri
into the Union under the first compromise upon the question of
slavery since the adoption of the Federal Constitution.  From
the establishment of the Government the question of human
slavery was the one perilous question,--the one constant menace to
national unity, until its final extinction amid the flames of war.
Marvellous to man are the purposes of the Almighty.  What seer
could have foretold that, from this humblest of homes upon the
frontier, was to spring the man who at the crucial moment should
cut the Gordian knot, liberate a race, and give to the ages enlarged
and grander conception of the deathless principles of the declaration
of human rights?

  "'Often do the spirits of great events
  Stride on before the events,
  And in to-day already walks to-morrow.'

"The first inauguration of President Lincoln noted the hour of
breaking with the past.  It was a period of gloom, when the very
foundations were shaken, when no man could foretell the happening of
the morrow, when strong men trembled at the possibility of the
destruction of our Government.

"Pause a moment, and recall the man who, under the conditions
mentioned, on the fourth of March, 1861, entered upon the duties
of the great office to which he had been chosen.  He came from the
common walks of life--from what, in other countries, would be called
the great middle class.  His early home was one of the humblest,
where he was a stranger to the luxuries and to many of the ordinary
comforts of life.  His opportunities for education were only such as
were common in the remote habitations of our Western country one
century ago.

"Under such conditions, began a career which in grandeur and
achievement has but a single counterpart in our history.  And what
a splendid commentary this upon our free institutions,--upon the
sublime underlying principle of popular government!  How inspiring
to the youth of high aims every incident of the pathway that led
from the frontier cabin to the Executive Mansion,--from the humblest
position to the most exalted yet attained by man!  In no other
country than ours could such attainment have been possible for the
boy whose hands were inured to toil, whose bread was eaten under
the hard conditions that poverty imposes, whose only heritage
was brain, integrity, lofty ambition, and indomitable purpose.
Let it never be forgotten that the man of whom I speak possessed
an integrity that could know no temptation, a purity of life that was
never questioned, a patriotism that no sectional lines could limit,
and a fixedness of purpose that knew no shadow of turning.

"The decade extending from our first treaty of peace with Great
Britain to the inauguration of Washington has been truly denominated
the critical period of our history.  The eloquence of Adams and
Henry had precipitated revolution; the unfaltering courage of
Washington and his comrades had secured independence; but the more
difficult task of garnering up the fruits of victory by stable
government was yet to be achieved.  The hour for the constructive
statesman had arrived, and James Madison and his associates, equal to
the great emergency, formulated the Federal Constitution.

"No less critical was the period that bounded the active life of
the man whose memory we honor to-day.  One perilous question to
national unity which for nearly three-quarters of a century had
been the subject of repeated compromise by patriotic statesmen;
the apple of discord producing sectional antagonism, whose shadow had
darkened our national pathway from the beginning,--was now for weal
or woe to find determination.  Angry debate in the Senate and upon
the forum was now hushed, and the supreme question that took hold of
national life was to find enduring arbitrament in the dread tribunal
of war.

"It was well that in such an hour, with such tremendous issues
in the balance, a steady hand was at the helm; that a conservative
statesman--one whose mission was to save, not to destroy--was in
the high place of responsibility and power.  It booted little then
that he was untaught of schools, unskilled in the ways of courts, but
it was of supreme moment that he could touch responsive chords
in the great American heart, all-important that his very soul
yearned for the preservation of the Government established through
the toil and sacrifice of the generation that had gone.  How
hopeless the Republic in that dark hour, had its destiny hung upon
the statecraft of Talleyrand, the eloquence of Mirabeau, or the
genius of Napoleon!  It was fortunate indeed that the ark of our
covenant was then borne by the plain, brave man of conciliatory
spirit and kind words, whose heart, as Emerson has said, 'was as
large as the world, but nowhere had room for the memory of a wrong.'

"Nobler words have never fallen from human lips than the closing
sentences of his first inaugural uttered on one of the pivotal days
of human history, immediately after taking the oath to preserve,
protect, and defend his country:

"'I am loath to close.  We are not enemies, but friends.  Though
passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection.
The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battlefield and
patriot's grave to every heart and hearthstone of this broad land,
will yet swell the chorus of the Union when touched as they will
be by the better angels of our nature.'

"In the light of what we now know so well, nothing is hazarded
in saying that the death of no man has been to his country so
irreparable a loss, or one so grievous to be borne, as that of
Abraham Lincoln.  When Washington died his work was done, his life
well rounded out.  Save one, the years allotted had been passed.
Not so with Lincoln.  To him a grander task was yet in waiting,
one no other could so well perform.  The assassin's pistol proved the
veritable Pandora's box from which sprung evils untold,--whose
consequences have never been measured.--to one-third of the States
of our Union.  But for his untimely death how the current of history
might have been changed,--and many a sad chapter remained unwritten!
How earnestly he desired a restored Union, and that the blessings of
peace and of concord should be the common heritage of every section,
is known to all.

"When in the loom of time have such words been heard above the din
of fierce conflict as his sublime utterances but a brief time before
his tragic death--

"'With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness
in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on
to finish the work we are in, to bind up the nation's wounds; to
care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow
and his orphan, to do all which may achieve a lasting peace
among ourselves, and with all nations.'

"No fitter occasion than this can ever arise in which to refer
to two historical events that at crucial moments tested to the
utmost the safe and far-seeing statesmanship of President Lincoln.
The first was the seizure upon the high seas of Mason and Slidell,
the accredited representatives from the Southern Confederacy to
the courts of England and France, respectively.  The seizure was
in November, 1861, by Captain Wilkes of our navy; and the envoys
named were taken by him from the _Trent,_ a mail-carrying steamer of
the British Government.  The act of Captain Wilkes met with
enthusiastic commendation throughout the entire country; he was
voted the thanks of Congress, and his act publicly approved by the
Secretary of the Navy.

"The demand by the British government for reparation upon the part
of the United States was prompt and explicit.  The perils that then
environed us were such as rarely shadow the pathway of nations.
Save Russia alone, our Government had no friend among the crowned heads
of Europe.  Menaced by the peril of the recognition of the Southern
Confederacy by England and France, with the very stars apparently warring
against us in their courses, the position of the President was
in the last degree trying.  To surrender the Confederate envoys
was in a measure humiliating and in opposition to the popular
impulse; their retention, the signal for the probable recognition of
the Southern Confederacy by the European powers, and the certain
and immediate declaration of war by England.

"The good genius of President Lincoln--rather his wise, just,
far-seeing statesmanship--stood him well in hand at the critical
moment.  Had a rash and impulsive man then held the executive
office, what a sea of troubles might have overwhelmed us!  How the
entire current of our history might have been changed!

"The calm, wise President, in his council chamber, aided by his
closest official adviser, Secretary Seward, discerned clearly
the path of national safety and of honor.  None the less was the
act of the President one of justice, one that will abide the
sure test of time.  Upon the real ground that the seizure of the
envoys was in violation of the Law of Nations, they were eventually
surrendered, and war with England, as well as the immediate danger
of recognition of the Confederacy, averted.  Let it not be forgotten
that this very act of President Lincoln was a triumphant vindication
of our Government in its second war with Great Britain--a war waged
as a protest on our part against British seizure and impressment
of American citizens upon the high seas.

"The other incident, to which I briefly refer, was the proclamation
of emancipation.  As a war measure of stupendous significance in
the national defence, as well as of justice to the enslaved,
such proclamation, immediate in time and radical in terms, had
to greater or less degree been urged upon the President from the
outbreak of the Rebellion.  That slavery was to perish amid the
great upheaval became in time the solemn conviction of all thoughtful
men.  Meanwhile there were divided counsels among the earnest
supporters of the President as to the time the masterful act 'that
could know no backward steps' should be taken.  Unmoved amid divided
counsels, and at times fierce dissensions, the calm, far-seeing
executive, upon whom was cast the tremendous responsibility,
patiently bided his time.  Events that are now the masterful theme
of history crowded in rapid succession, the opportune moment arrived,
the hour struck, the proclamation that has no counterpart fell upon
the ears of the startled world, and, as by the interposition of a
mightier hand, a race was lifted out of the depths of bondage.

"To the one man at the helm it seemed to have been given to know
the day and the hour.  At the crucial moment, in one of the exalted
days of human history,

  "'He sounded forth the trumpet that has never called

"The men who knew Abraham Lincoln, who saw him face to face, who
heard his voice in public assemblage, have with few exceptions
passed to the grave.  Another generation is upon the busy stage.
The book has forever closed upon the dreadful pageant of civil
strife.  Sectional animosities, thank God, belong now only to
the past.  The mantle of Peace is over our entire land, and prosperity
within our borders.

  "'The war-drum throbs no longer,
  And the battle flags are furled
  In the parliament of men,
  The federation of the world.'

"Through the instrumentality, in no small measure, of the man whose
memory we now honor, the Government established by our fathers,
untouched by the finger of Time, has descended to us.  The
responsibility of its preservation and transmission rests upon the
successive generations as they come and go.  To-day, at this
auspicious hour sacred to the memory of Lincoln, let us, his
countrymen, inspired by the sublime lessons of his wondrous life, and
grateful to God for all He has vouchsafed to our fathers and to us
in the past, take courage and turn our faces resolutely, hopefully,
trustingly to the future.  I know of no words more fitting with
which to close this humble tribute to the memory of Abraham Lincoln,
than those inscribed upon the monument of Moliere:

  "'Nothing was wanting to his glory; he was wanting to



History has been defined, "the sum of the biographies of a few
strong men."  Much that is of profound and abiding interest in
American history during the two decades immediately preceding
our Civil War is bound up in the biography of the strong man of
whom I write.  Chief among the actors, his place was near the middle
of the stage during that eventful and epoch-making period.

Stephen A. Douglas was born in Brandon, Vermont, April 23, 1813,
and died in Chicago, Illinois, June 3, 1861.  Between the dates
given lie the years that up a crowded, eventful life.  Left penniless
by the death of his father, he was at a tender age dependent upon his
own exertions for maintenance and education.  At the age of fifteen
he apprenticed himself to a cabinet-maker in the town of Middlebury
in his native State.  Naturally of delicate organization, he was
unable long to endure the physical strain of this calling, and
at the close of two years' service he returned to his early home.
Entering an academy in Brandon, he there for a time pursued with
reasonable diligence the studies preparatory to a higher course.
Supplementing the education thus acquired, by a brief course of
study in an academy at Canandaigua, New York, at the age of twenty
he turned his footsteps westward.

One of his biographers says:

"It is doubtful if among all the thousands who in those early days
were constantly faring westward from New England, Virginia, and
the Carolinas, there ever was a youth more resolutely and boldly
addressed to opportunity than he.  Penniless, broken in health,
almost diminutive in physical stature, and unknown, he made his
way successively to Cincinnati, Louisville, and St. Louis, in search
of employment, literally of bread."

By a sudden turn in fortune's wheel his lot was cast in Central
Illinois, where his first vocation was that of teacher of a village
school.  Yet later--after laborious application--admitted to the
bar, he courageously entered upon his marvellous career.

His home was Jacksonville, and to the hardy pioneers of Morgan and
neighboring counties, it was soon revealed that notwithstanding
his slight stature and boyish appearance the youthful Douglas was at
once to be taken fully into the account.  Self-reliant to the very
verge, he unhesitatingly entered the arena of active professional and
political strife with foemen worthy the steel of veterans at the
bar, and upon the hustings.

The issues were sharply drawn between the two political parties
then struggling for ascendancy, and Central Illinois was the home of
as brilliant an array of gifted leaders as the Whig party at any
time in its palmiest days had known.  Hardin, Stuart, Browning,
Logan, Baker, Lincoln were just then upon the threshold of careers
that have given their names honored and enduring place upon the
pages of our history.  Into the safe keeping of the leaders just
named, were entrusted in large degree the advocacy of the principles
of the now historic party, and the political fortunes of its great
chieftain, Henry Clay.

As is well known, the principal antagonist of the renowned Whig
chieftain was Andrew Jackson.  Earlier in their political careers,
both had been earnest supporters of the administration of President
Monroe, but at its close the leaders last named, with Adams and
Crawford, were aspirants to the great office.  No candidate receiving
a majority of the electoral votes and the selection by Constitutional
requirement devolving upon the House of Representatives, Mr. Adams
was eventually chosen.  His election over his principal competitor,
General Jackson, was largely through the influence of Mr. Clay;
and the subsequent acceptance by the latter of the office of
Secretary of State gave rise to the unfounded but vehement cry
of "Bargain and corruption," which followed the Kentucky statesman
through two presidential struggles of later periods, and died wholly
away only when the clods had fallen upon his grave.

Triumphant in his candidacy over Adams in 1828, President Jackson,
four years later, encountered as his formidable competitor his
colossal antagonist--the one man for whom he had no forgiveness,
even when the shadows were gathering about his own couch.

"The early and better days of the Republic" is by no means an
unusual expression in the political literature of our day.  Possibly
all the generations of men have realized the significance of the
words of the great bard:

  "Past and to come seem best;
  Things present worst.
  We are time's subjects."

And yet, barring the closing months of the administration of the
elder Adams, this country has known no period of more intense party
passion, or of more deadly feuds among political leaders, than was
manifested during the presidential contest of 1832.  The Whig party,
with Henry Clay as its candidate and its idol, was for the first
time in the field.  Catching something of the spirit of its imperious
leader, its campaign was recklessly aggressive.  The scabbard was
thrown away, and all the lines of retreat cut off from the beginning.
No act of the party in power escaped the lime-light; no delinquency,
real or imaginary, of Jackson--its candidate for re-election--
but was ruthlessly drawn into the open day.  Even the domestic
hearthstone was invaded and antagonisms engendered that knew no
surcease until the last of the chief participants in the
eventful struggle had descended to the tomb.

The defeat of Clay but intensified his hostility toward his successful
rival, and with a following that in personal devotion to its leader
has scarcely known a parallel, he was at once the peerless front
of a powerful opposition to the Jackson administration.

Such were the existing political conditions throughout the country
when Stephen A. Douglas, at the age of twenty-two, first entered
the arena of debate.  It would not be strange if such environment left
its deep impress, and measurably gave direction to his political
career.  The period of probation and training so essential to
ordinary men was unneeded by him.  Fully equipped--and with a
self-confidence that has rarely had a counterpart--he was from the
beginning the earnest defender of the salient measures of the
Democratic administration, and the aggressive champion of President
Jackson.  Absolutely fearless, he took no reckoning of the opposing
forces, and regardless of the prowess or ripe experience of
adversaries, he at all times, in and out of season, gladly welcomed
the encounter.  To this end, he did not await opportunities, but
eagerly sought them.

His first contest for public office was with John J. Hardin, by no
means the least gifted of the brilliant Whig leaders already
mentioned.  Defeated by Douglas in his candidacy for re-election
to the office of Attorney General, Colonel Hardin at a later day
achieved distinction as a Representative in Congress, and at the
early age of thirty-seven fell while gallantly leading his regiment
upon the bloody field of Buena Vista.  In the catalogue of men
worthy of remembrance, there is to be found the name of no braver,
manlier man, than that of John J. Hardin.

With well-earned laurels as public prosecutor, Douglas resigned,
after two years' incumbency of that office, to accept that of
Representative in the State Legislature.  The Tenth General Assembly
--to which he was chosen--was the most notable in Illinois history.
Upon the roll of members of the House--in the old Capitol at Vandalia
--are names inseparably associated with the history of the State
and the nation.  From its list were yet to be chosen two Governors
of the commonwealth, one member of the Cabinet, three Justices
of the Supreme Court of the State, eight Representatives in Congress,
six Senators, and one President of the United States.  That
would indeed be a notable assemblage of law-makers in any country or
time, that included in its membership McClernand, Edwards,
Ewing, Semple, Logan, Hardin, Browning, Shields, Baker, Stuart,
Douglas, and Lincoln.

In this assembly, Douglas encountered in impassioned debate, possibly
for the first time, two men against whom in succession he was soon
to be opposed upon the hustings as candidate for Congress; and
later as an aspirant to yet more exalted stations, another, with
whose name--now "given to the ages"--his own is linked inseparably
for all time.

The most brilliant and exciting contest for the national House
of Representatives the State has known--excepting possibly that of
Cook and McLean a decade and a half earlier--was that of 1838
between John T. Stuart and Stephen A. Douglas.  They were the
recognized champions of their respective parties.  The district
embraced two-thirds of the area of the State, extending from the
counties immediately south of Sangamon and Morgan, northward to
Lake Michigan and the Wisconsin line.  Together on horseback, often
across unbridged streams, and through pathless forest and prairie,
they journeyed, holding joint debates in all the county seats of
the district--including the then villages of Jacksonville, Springfield,
Peoria, Pekin, Bloomington, Quincy, Joliet, Galena, and Chicago.
That the candidates were well matched in ability and eloquence
readily appears from the fact that after an active canvass of
several months, Major Stuart was elected by a majority of but eight
votes.  By re-elections he served six years in the House of
Representatives and was one of its ablest and most valuable members.
In Congress, he was the political friend and associate of
Crittenden, Winthrop, Clay, and Webster.  Major Stuart lives in my
memory as a splendid type of the Whig statesman of the Golden Age.
Courteous and kindly, he was at all times a Kentucky gentleman
of the old school if ever one trod this blessed earth.

Returning to the bar after his defeat for Congress, Douglas was,
in quick succession, Secretary of State by appointment of the
Governor, and Judge of the Circuit and Supreme Courts by election by
the Legislature.  The courts he held as _nisi prius_ judge were in
the Quincy circuit, and the last-named city for a time his home.
His associates upon the Supreme Bench were Justices Treat, Caton, Ford,
Wilson, Scates, and Lockwood.  His opinions, twenty-one in number,
will be found in Scammon's Reports.  There was little in any of
the causes submitted to test fully his capacity as lawyer or
logician.  Enough, however, appears from his clear and concise
statements and arguments to justify the belief that had his life
been unreservedly given to the profession of the law, his
talents concentrated upon the mastery of its eternal principles,
he would in the end have been amply rewarded "by that mistress who
is at the same time so jealous and so just."  This, however, was
not to be, and to a field more alluring his footsteps were now
turned.  Abandoning the bench to men less ambitious, he was soon
embarked upon the uncertain and delusive sea of politics.

His unsuccessful opponent for Congress in 1842 was the Hon. Orville
H. Browning, with whom, in the State Legislature, he had measured swords
over a partisan resolution sustaining the financial policy of
President Jackson.  "The whirligig of time brings in his revenges,"
and it so fell out that near two decades later it was the fortune of
Mr. Browning to occupy a seat in the Senate as the successor of
Douglas--"touched by the finger of death."  At a later day, Mr.
Browning, as a member of the Cabinet of President Johnson, acquitted
himself with honor in the discharge of the exacting duties of
Secretary of the Interior.  So long as men of high aims, patriotic
hearts, and noble achievements are held in grateful remembrance,
his name will have honored place in our country's annals.

The career upon which Douglas now entered was the one for which he
was pre-eminently fitted, and to which he had aspired from the
beginning.  It was a career in which national fame was to be
achieved, and--by re-elections to the House, and later to the Senate
--to continue without interruption to the last hour of his life.
He took his seat in the House of Representatives, December 5, 1843,
and among his colleagues were Semple and Breese of the Senate, and
Hardin, McClernand, Ficklin, and Wentworth of the House.  Mr.
Stephens of Georgia,--with whom it was my good fortune to serve in
the forty-fourth and forty-sixth Congresses--told me that he entered
the House the same day with Douglas, and that he distinctly recalled
the delicate and youthful appearance of the latter as he advanced to
the Speaker's desk to receive the oath of office.  Conspicuous
among the leaders of the House in the twenty-eighth Congress were
Hamilton Fish, Washington Hunt, Henry A. Wise, Howell Cobb, Joshua
R. Giddings, Linn Boyd, John Slidell, Barnwell Rhett, Robert C.
Winthrop, the Speaker, Hannibal Hamlin, elected Vice-President upon
the ticket with Mr. Lincoln in 1860, Andrew Johnson, the successor
of the lamented President in 1865, and John Quincy Adams, whose
brilliant career as Ambassador, Senator, Secretary of State, and
President, was rounded out by nearly two decades of faithful service
as a Representative in Congress.

The period that witnessed the entrance of Douglas into the great
Commons was an eventful one in our political history.  John Tyler,
upon the death of President Harrison, had succeeded to the great
office, and was in irreconcilable hostility to the leaders of
his party upon the vital issues upon which the Whig victory of 1840
had been achieved.  Henry Clay--then at the zenith of his marvellous
powers--merciless in his arraignment of the Tyler administration, was
unwittingly breeding the party dissentions that eventually compassed
his own defeat in his last struggle for the Presidency.  Daniel
Webster, regardless of the criticism of party associates, and after
the retirement of his Whig colleagues from the Tyler cabinet, still
remained at the head of the State Department.  His vindication, if
needed, abundantly appears in the treaty by which our northeastern
boundary was definitely adjusted, and war with England happily

In the rush of events, party antagonisms, in the main, soon fade
from remembrance.  One, however, that did not pass with the occasion,
but lingered even to the shades of the Hermitage, was unrelenting
hostility to President Jackson.  For his declaration of martial law in
New Orleans just prior to the battle--with which his own name is
associated for all time--General Jackson had been subjected to a heavy
fine by a judge of that city.  Repeated attempts in Congress looking to
his vindication and reimbursement, had been unavailing.  Securing the
floor for the first time, Douglas--upon the anniversary of the great
victory--delivered an impassioned speech in vindication of Jackson
which at once challenged the attention of the country, and gave him high
place among the great debaters of that memorable Congress.  In
reply to the demand of an opponent for a precedent for the proposed
legislation, Douglas quickly responded:

"Possibly, sir, no case can be found on any page of American history
where the commanding officer has been fined for an act absolutely
necessary to the salvation of his country.  As to precedents, let us make
one now that will challenge the admiration of the world and stand the
test of all the ages."

After a graphic description of conditions existing in New Orleans at
the time of Jackson's declaration of martial law, "the city filled
with traitors, anxious to surrender; spies transmitting information
to the camp of the enemy, British regulars--four-fold the number
of the American defenders--advancing to the attack--in this terrible
emergency, necessity became the paramount law, the responsibility was
taken, martial law declared, and a victory achieved unparalleled
in the annals of war; a victory that avenged the infamy of the
wanton burning of our nation's Capitol, fully, and for all time."

The speech was unanswered, the bill passed, and probably Douglas
knew no prouder moment than when, a few months later, upon a visit
to the Hermitage, he received the earnest thanks of the venerable
commander for his masterly vindication.

Two of the salient and far-reaching questions confronting the
statesmen of that eventful Congress pertained to the settlement of
the Oregon boundary question, and to the annexation of the republic
of Texas.  The first-named question--left unsettled by the treaty of
Ghent--had been for two generations the apple of discord between
the American and British governments.  That it at a critical moment
came near involving the two nations in a war is a well-known fact
in history.  The platform upon which Mr. Polk had, in 1844, been
elected to the Presidency, asserted unequivocally the right of the
United States to the whole of the Oregon Territory.  The boundary line
of "fifty-four-forty" was in many of the States the decisive party
watchword in that masterful contest.

Douglas, in full accord with his party upon this question, ably
canvassed Illinois in earnest advocacy of Mr. Polk's election.
When, at a later day, it was determined by the President and his
official advisers to abandon the party platform demand of "fifty-four
degrees and forty minutes" as the only settlement of the
disputed boundary, and accept that of the parallel of forty-nine
degrees--reluctantly proposed by Great Britain as a peaceable final
settlement--Mr. Douglas earnestly antagonizing any concession, was
at once in opposition to the administration he had assisted to
bring into power.  Whether the part of wisdom was a strict adherence
to the platform dicta of "the whole of Oregon," or a reasonable
concession in the interest of peaceable adjustment of a dangerous
question, was long a matter of vehement discussion.  It suffices that
the treaty with Great Britain establishing our northwestern boundary
upon the parallel last named was promptly ratified by the Senate, and
the once famous Oregon question peaceably relegated to the realm
of history.

A question--sixty odd years ago--equal in importance with that
of the Oregon boundary was the annexation of Texas.  The "Lone Star
State" had been virtually an independent republic since the decisive
victory of General Houston over Santa Ana in 1837 at San Jacinto, and
its independence as such had been acknowledged by our own and
European governments.  The hardy settlers of this new Commonwealth
were in the main emigrants from the United States, and earnestly
solicitous of admission into the Federal Union.  The question of
annexation entered largely into the Presidential canvass of 1844, and
the "lone star" upon Democratic banners was an important factor in
securing the triumph of Mr. Polk in that bitterly contested
election.  In the closing hours of the Tyler administration,
annexation was at length effected by joint resolution of Congress,
and Texas passed at once from an independent republic to a State
of the American Union.  This action of Congress, however, gave deep
offence to the Mexican government, and was the initial in a series
of stirring events soon to follow.  The Mexican invasion, the
brilliant victories won by American valor, and the treaty of peace
--by which our domain was extended westward to the Pacific--
constitute a thrilling chapter in the annals of war.  Brief in
duration, the Mexican War was the training school for men whose
military achievements were yet to make resplendent the pages of
history.  Under the victorious banners of the great commanders,
Taylor and Scott, were Thomas and Beauregard, Shields and Hill,
Johnston and Sherman, McClellan and Longstreet, Hancock and Stonewall
Jackson, Lee and Grant.  In the list of heroes were eight future
candidates for the Presidency, three of whom--Taylor, Pierce,
and Grant--were triumphantly elected.

Meanwhile, at the nation's Capitol was held high debate over
questions second in importance to none that have engaged the profound
consideration of statesmen--that literally took hold of the issues
of war, conquest, diplomacy, peace, empire.  From its inception,
Douglas was an unfaltering advocate of the project of annexation, and
as chairman of the Committee on Territories, bore prominent part
in the protracted and exciting debates consequent upon the passage
of that measure in the House of Representatives.  In his celebrated
colloquy with Mr. Adams he contended that the joint resolution
he advocated was in reality only for the re-annexation of territory
originally ours under the Louisiana Purchase of 1803.  That something
akin to the spirit of "manifest destiny" brooded over the discussion
may be gathered from the closing sentences of his speech:

"Our Federal system is admirably adapted to the whole continent;
and while I would not violate the laws of national or treaty
stipulations, or in any manner tarnish the national honor, I would
exert all legal and honorable means to drive Great Britain and the
last vestige of royal authority from the continent of North America,
and extend the limits of the republic from ocean to ocean."

Elected to the Senate at the age of thirty-four, Douglas took
his seat in that august body in December, 1847.  On the same day
Abraham Lincoln took the oath of office as a member from Illinois in
the House of Representatives.  The Senate was presided over by the
able and accomplished Vice-President, George M. Dallas.  Seldom
has there been a more imposing list of great names than that which
now included the young Senator from Illinois.  Conspicuous among
the Senators of the thirty States represented, were Dix of New
York, Dayton of New Jersey, Hale of New Hampshire, Clayton of
Delaware, Reverdy Johnson of Maryland, Mason of Virginia, King
of Alabama, Davis of Mississippi, Bell of Tennessee, Corwin of
Ohio, Crittenden of Kentucky, Breese of Illinois, Benton of Missouri,
Houston of Texas, Calhoun of South Carolina, and Webster of
Massachusetts.  It need hardly be said that the debates of that
and the immediately succeeding Congress have possibly never been
surpassed in ability and eloquence by any deliberative assembly.

The one vital and portentous question--in some one of its many
phases--was that of human slavery.  This institution--until its
final extinction amid the flames of war--cast its ominous shadow
over our nation's pathway from the beginning.  From the establishment
of the Government under the Federal Constitution to the period
mentioned, it had been the constant subject of compromise and

Henry Clay was first known as "the great pacificator" by his tireless
efforts in the exciting struggle of 1820, over the admission of
Missouri--with its Constitution recognizing slavery--into the
Federal Union.  Bowed with the weight of years, the Kentucky
statesman, from the retirement he had sought, in recognition of
the general desire of his countrymen, again returned to the theatre
of his early struggles and triumphs.  The fires of ambition had
burned low by age and bereavement, but with earnest longing that
he might again pour oil upon the troubled waters, he presented
to the Senate, as terms of final peaceable adjustment of the slavery
question, the once famous compromise measures of 1850.

The sectional agitation then at its height was measurably the result
of the proposed disposition of territory acquired by the then recent
treaty with Mexico.  The advocates and opponents of slavery extension
were at once in bitter antagonism, and the intensity of feeling
such as the country had rarely known.

The compromise measures--proposed by Mr. Clay in a general bill
--embraced the establishment of Territorial Governments for Utah
and New Mexico, the settlement of the Texas boundary, an amendment
to the Fugitive Slave Law, and the admission of California as a
free State.  In entire accord with each proposition, Douglas had--by
direction of the Committee on Territories, of which he was the
chairman--reported a bill providing for the immediate admission of
California under its recently adopted free State Constitution.
Separate measures embracing the other propositions of the general bill
were likewise duly reported.  These measures were advocated by the
Illinois Senator in a speech that at once won him recognized place
among the great debaters of that illustrious assemblage.  After
many weeks of earnest, at times vehement, debate, the bills in the
form last mentioned were passed, and received the approval of
the President.  Apart from the significance of these measures as
a peace offering to the country, their passage closed a memorable era
in our history.  During their discussion Clay, Calhoun, and Webster
--"the illustrious triumvirate"--were heard for the last time in
the Senate.  Greatest of the second generation of our statesmen,
associated in the advocacy of measures that in the early day of
the Republic had given us exalted place among the nations,
within brief time of each other, "shattered by the contentions
of the Great Hall, they passed to the chamber of reconciliation and
of silence."

Chief in importance of his public services to his State was that
of Senator Douglas in procuring from Congress a land grant to aid in
the construction of the Illinois Central Railroad.  It is but
justice to the memory of his early colleague, Senator Breese, to
say that he had been the earnest advocate of a similar measure in a
former Congress.  The bill, however, which after persistent opposition
finally became a law, was introduced and warmly advocated by Senator
Douglas.  This act ceded to the State of Illinois--subject to
the disposal of the Legislature thereof--"for the purpose of aiding
in the construction of a railroad from the southern terminus of
the Illinois and Michigan Canal to a point at or near the junction
of the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers, with a branch of the same to
Chicago, and another to Dubuque, Iowa, every alternate section
of land designated by even numbers for six sections in width on
each side of said road, and its branches."  It is difficult at this
day to realize the importance of this measure to the then sparsely
settled State.  The grant in aggregate was near three million acres,
and was directly to the State.  After appropriate action by the
State Legislature, the Illinois Central Railroad Company was duly
organized--and the road eventually constructed.

A recent historian has truly said:

"For this, if for no other public service to his State, the name
of Douglas was justly entitled to preservation by the erection
of that splendid monumental column which, overlooking the blue
waters of Lake Michigan, also overlooks for long distance that iron
highway which was in no small degree the triumph of his legislative
forecast and genius."

The measure now to be mentioned aroused deeper attention--more
anxious concern--throughout the entire country than any with which
the name of Douglas had yet been closely associated.  It pertained
directly to slavery, the "bone of contention" between the North
and the South, the one dangerous quantity in our national politics
from the establishment of the Government.  Beginning with its
recognition--though not in direct terms--in the Federal Constitution,
it had through two generations, in the interest of peace, been the
subject of repeated compromise.

As chairman of the Senate Committee on Territories, Douglas in the
early days of 1854 reported a bill providing for the organization of
the Territories of Nebraska and Kansas.  This measure, which so
suddenly arrested public attention, is known in our political
history as the "Kansas-Nebraska Bill."  Among its provisions was
one repealing the Missouri Compromise or restriction of 1820.  The
end sought by the repeal was, as stated by Douglas, to leave the
people of said Territories respectively to determine the question of
the introduction or exclusion of slavery for themselves; in
other words, "to regulate their domestic institutions in their own
way, subject only to the Constitution of the United States."
The principle strenuously contended for was that of "popular
sovereignty" or non-intervention by Congress, in the affairs of
the Territories.  In closing the protracted and exciting debate
just prior to the passage of the bill in the Senate, he said:

"There is another reason why I desire to see this principle recognized
as a rule of action in all time to come.  It will have the effect to
destroy all sectional parties and sectional agitation.  If you
withdraw the slavery question from the halls of Congress and the
political arena, and commit it to the arbitrament of those who are
immediately interested in and alone responsible for its consequences,
there is nothing left out of which sectional parties can be organized.
When the people of the North shall all be rallied under one banner,
and the whole South marshalled under another banner, and each
section excited to frenzy and madness by hostility to the institutions
of the other, then the patriot may well tremble for the perpetuity
of the Union.  Withdraw the slavery question from the political
arena and remove it to the States and Territories, each to decide for
itself, and such a catastrophe can never happen."

These utterances of little more than half a century ago, fall
strangely upon our ears at this day.  In the light of all that has
occurred in the long reach of years, how significant the words,
"No man is wiser than events"!  Likewise, "The actions of men are to
be judged by the light surrounding them at the time--not by the
knowledge that comes after the fact."  The immediate effect of the
passage of the Kansas-Nebraska Bill was directly the reverse of
that so confidently predicted by Douglas.  The era of concord
between the North and the South did not return.  The slavery
question--instead of being relegated to the recently organized
Territories for final settlement--at once assumed the dimensions
of a great national issue.  The country at large--instead of a
single Territory--became the theatre of excited discussion.  The
final determination was to be not that of a Territory, but of
the entire people.

One significant effect of the passage of the bill was the immediate
disruption of the Whig party.  As a great national organization
--of which Clay and Webster had been eminent leaders, and Harrison
and Taylor successful candidates for the Presidency--it now passes
into history.  Upon its ruins, the Republican party at once came
into being.  Under the leadership of Fremont as its candidate, and
opposition by Congressional intervention to slavery extension as
its chief issue, it was a formidable antagonist to the Democratic party,
in the Presidential contest of 1856.  Mr. Buchanan had defeated
Douglas in the nominating convention of his party that year.
His absence from the country as Minister to England, during the
exciting events just mentioned, it was thought would make him a
safer candidate than his chief competitor, Douglas.  He had been
in no manner identified with the Kansas-Nebraska Bill, or the stormy
events which immediately followed its passage.  In his letter of
acceptance, however, Mr. Buchanan had given his unqualified approval
of his party platform, which recognized and adopted "the principle
contained in the organic law establishing the Territories of Nebraska
and Kansas as embodying the only sound and safe solution of the
slavery question."  Upon the principle here declared, issue was
joined by his political opponents, and the battle fought to the
bitter end.

Although Douglas had met personal defeat in his aspiration to
the Presidency, the principle of non-intervention by Congress in
the affairs of the Territories, for which he had so earnestly
contended, had been triumphant both in the convention of the party,
and at the polls.  This principle, in its application to Kansas,
was soon to be put to the test.  From its organization, that
Territory had been a continuous scene of disorder, often of violence.
In rapid succession three Governors appointed by the President had
resigned and departed the Territory, each confessing his inability
to maintain public order.  The struggle for mastery between the
Free State advocates and their adversaries arrested the attention of
the entire country.  It vividly recalled the bloody forays read of
in the old chronicles of hostile clans upon the Scottish border.

The parting of the ways between Senator Douglas and President
Buchanan was now reached.  The latter had received the cordial
support of Douglas in the election which elevated him to the
Presidency.  His determined opposition to the re-election of Douglas
became apparent as the Senatorial canvass progressed.  The incidents
now to be related will explain this hostility, as well as bring to
the front one of the distinctive questions upon which much stress was
laid in the subsequent debates between Douglas and Lincoln.

A statesman of national reputation, the Hon. Robert J. Walker, was
at length appointed Governor of Kansas.  During his brief administration
a convention assembled without his co-operation at Lecompton,
and formulated a Constitution under which application was soon made
for the admission of Kansas into the Union.  This convention was
in part composed of non-residents, and in no sense reflected the
wishes of the majority of the _bona fide_ residents of the Territory.
The salient feature of the Constitution was that establishing
slavery.  The Constitution was not submitted to the convention
to popular vote, but in due time forwarded to the President, and
by him laid before Congress, accompanied by a recommendation for
its approval, and the early admission of the new State into the

When the Lecompton Constitution came before the Senate, it at once
encountered the formidable opposition of Senator Douglas.  In
unmeasured terms he denounced it as fraudulent, as antagonistic to
the wishes of the people of Kansas, and subversive of the basic
principle upon which the Territory had been organized.  In the
attitude just assumed, Douglas at once found himself in line
with the Republicans, and in opposition to the administration he
had helped place in power.  The breach thus created was destined
to remain unhealed.  Moreover, his declaration of hostility to the
Lecompton Constitution was the beginning of the end of years of
close political affiliation with Southern Democratic statesmen.
From that moment Douglas lost prestige as a national leader of his
party.  In more than one-half of the Democratic States he ceased to
be regarded as a probable or even possible candidate for the
Presidential succession.  The hostility thus engendered followed
him to the Charleston convention of 1860, and throughout the exciting
Presidential contest which followed.  But the humiliation of defeat
--brought about, as he believed, by personal hostility to himself--
was yet in the future.  In the attempted admission of Kansas under
the Lecompton Constitution, Douglas was triumphant over the
administration and his former political associates from the South.
Under what was known as the "English Amendment," the obnoxious
Constitution was referred to the people of Kansas, and by them
overwhelmingly rejected.

The close of this controversy in the early months of 1858 left
Douglas in a position of much embarrassment.  He had incurred
the active hostility of the President, and in large measure of his
adherents, without gaining the future aid of his late associates
in the defeat of the Lecompton Constitution.  His Senatorial term was
nearing its close, and his political life depended upon his
re-election.  With a united and aggressive enemy, ably led, in his
front; his own party hopelessly divided--one faction seeking his
defeat--it can readily be seen that his political pathway was by no
means one of peace.  Such, in brief outline, were the political
conditions when, upon the adjournment of Congress, Douglas returned
to Illinois in July, 1858, and made public announcement of his
candidacy for re-election.

In his speech at Springfield, June 17, accepting the nomination of
his party for the Senate, Mr. Lincoln had uttered the words which have
since become historic.  They are quoted at length, as they soon
furnished the text for his severe arraignment by Douglas in debate.
The words are:

"We are now far into this fifth year since a policy was initiated
with the avowed object and confident promise of putting an end
to slavery agitation.  Under the operation of that policy, that
agitation has not only not ceased, but has constantly augmented.
In my opinion, it will not cease until a crisis shall have been
reached and passed.  'A house divided against itself cannot stand.'
I believe this country cannot endure permanently half slave and
half free.  I do not expect the Union to be dissolved--I do not
expect the house to fall--but I do expect it will cease to be
divided.  It will become all one thing or all the other.  Either
the opponents of slavery will arrest the further spread of it
and place it where the public mind shall rest in the belief that
it is in the course of ultimate extinction, or its advocates
will push it forward until it shall become alike lawful in all the
States, old as well as new, North as well as South."

This, at the time, was a bold utterance, and, it was believed by
many, would imperil Mr. Lincoln's chances for election.  Mr. Blaine
in his "Twenty Years of Congress," says:

"Mr. Lincoln had been warned by intimate friends to whom he had
communicated the contents of his speech in advance of its delivery,
that he was treading on dangerous ground, that he would be
misinterpreted as a disunionist, and that he might fatally damage the
Republican party by making its existence synonymous with a destruction
of the Government."

The opening speech of Senator Douglas at Chicago a few days later--
sounding the keynote of his campaign--was in the main an arraignment
of his opponent for an attempt to precipitate an internecine
conflict, and array in deadly hostility the North against the South.
He said:

"In other words, Mr. Lincoln advocates boldly and clearly a war of
sections, a war of the North against the South, of the free
States against the slave States--a war of extermination--to be
continued relentlessly until the one or the other shall be subdued,
and all the States shall either become free or become slave."

The two speeches, followed by others of like tenor, aroused public
interest in the State as it had never been before.  The desire
to hear the candidates from the same platform became general.  The
proposal for a joint debate came from Mr. Lincoln on July 24 and
was soon thereafter accepted.  Seven joint meetings were agreed
upon, the first to be at Ottawa, August 21, and the last at Alton,
October 15.  The meetings were held in the open, and at each place
immense crowds were in attendance.  The friends of Mr. Lincoln
largely preponderated in the northern portion of the State, those of
Douglas in the southern, while in the centre the partisans of
the respective candidates were apparently equal in numbers.  The
interest never flagged for a moment from the beginning to the close.
The debate was upon a high plane; each candidate enthusiastically
applauded by his friends, and respectfully heard by his opponents.
The speakers were men of dignified presence, their bearing such as
to challenge respect in any assemblage.  There was nothing of
the "grotesque" about the one, nothing of the "political juggler" about
the other.  Both were deeply impressed with the gravity of the
questions at issue, and of what might prove their far-reaching
consequence to the country.

Kindly reference by each speaker to the other characterized the
debates from the beginning.  "My friend Lincoln," and "My friend
the Judge," were expressions of constant occurrence during the
debate.  While each mercilessly attacked the political utterances of
the other, good feeling in the main prevailed.  Something being
pardoned to the spirit of debate, the amenities were well observed.
They had been personally well known to each other for many years; had
served together in the Legislature when the State Capitol was at
Vandalia, and at a later date, Lincoln had appeared before the
Supreme Court when Douglas was one of the judges.  The amusing
allusions to each other were taken in good part.  Mr. Lincoln's
profound humor is now a proverb.  It never appeared to better
advantage than during these debates.  In criticising Mr. Lincoln's
attack upon Chief Justice Taney and his associates for the Dred
Scott decision, Douglas declared it to be an attempt to secure a
reversal of the high tribunal by an appeal to a town meeting.
It reminded him of the saying of Colonel Strode that the judicial system
of Illinois was perfect, except that "there should be an appeal
allowed from the Supreme Court to two justices of the peace."
Lincoln replied, "That was when you were on the bench, Judge."
Referring to Douglas's allusion to him as a kind, amiable, and
intelligent gentleman, he said:

"Then as the Judge has complimented me with these pleasant titles,
I was a little taken, for it came from a great man.  I was not very
much accustomed to flattery and it came the sweeter to me.  I
was like the Hoosier with the gingerbread, when he said he reckoned
he loved it better and got less of it than any other man."

In opening the debate at Ottawa, Douglas said:

"In the remarks I have made on the platform and the position of
Mr. Lincoln, I mean nothing personally disrespectful or unkind
to that gentleman.  I have known him for twenty-five years.  There
were many points of sympathy between us when we first got acquainted.
We were both comparatively boys, and both struggling with poverty in
a strange land.  I was a school-teacher in the town of Winchester,
and he a flourishing grocery-keeper in the town of Salem.  He
was more successful in his occupation than I was in mine, and hence
more fortunate in this world's goods.  Lincoln is one of those
peculiar men who perform with admirable skill everything which they
undertake.  I made as good a school-teacher as I could, and when a
cabinet-maker I made a good bedstead and table, although my old boss
said I succeeded better with bureaus and secretaries than anything
else.  I met him in the Legislature and had a sympathy with him
because of the up-hill struggle we both had in life.  He was
then just as good at telling an anecdote as now.  He could beat
any of the boys wrestling or running a foot-race, in pitching quoits
or tossing a copper, and the dignity and impartiality with which
he presided at a horse-race or a fist-fight, excited the admiration
and won the praise of everybody.  I sympathized with him because
he was struggling with difficulties, and so was I."

To which Lincoln replied:

"The Judge is woefully at fault about his friend Lincoln being a
grocery-keeper.  I don't know as it would be a sin if I had been;
but he is mistaken.  Lincoln never kept a grocery anywhere in
the world.  It is true that Lincoln did work the latter part of
one Winter in a little still house up at the head of a hollow."

The serious phases of the debates will now be considered.  The
opening speech was by Mr. Douglas.  That he possessed rare power
as a debater, all who heard him can bear witness.  Mr. Blaine in
his history says:

"His mind was fertile in resources.  He was master of logic.  In
that peculiar style of debate which in its intensity resembles a
physical combat, he had no equal.  He spoke with extraordinary
readiness.  He used good English, terse, pointed, vigorous.  He
disregarded the adornments of rhetoric.  He never cited historic
precedents except from the domain of American politics.  Inside
that field, his knowledge was comprehensive, minute, critical.  He
could lead a crowd almost irresistibly to his own conclusions."

Douglas was, in very truth, imbued with little of mere sentiment.
He gave little time to discussions belonging solely to the realm
of the speculative or the abstract.  He was in no sense a dreamer.
What Coleridge has defined wisdom--"common sense, in an uncommon
degree"--was his.  In phrase the simplest and most telling, he
struck at once at the very core of the controversy.  Possibly no
man was ever less inclined "to darken counsel with words without
knowledge."  Positive, and aggressive to the last degree, he never
sought "by indirections to find directions out."  In statesmanship--
in all that pertained to human affairs--he was intensely practical.
With him, in the words of Macaulay, "one acre in Middlesex is worth
a principality in Utopia."

It is a pleasure to recall--after the lapse of half a century--the
two men as they shook hands upon the speaker's stand, just before the
opening of the debates that were to mark an epoch in American
history.  Stephen A. Douglas!  Abraham Lincoln!  As they stood side
by side and looked out upon "the sea of upturned faces"--it was
indeed a picture to live in the memory of all who witnessed it.
The one stood for the old ordering of things, in an emphatic sense
for the Government as established by the fathers--with all its
compromises.  The other, recognizing equally with his opponent the
binding force of Constitutional obligation, yet looking, away from
present surroundings, "felt the inspiration of the coming of the
grander day."  As has been well said, "The one faced the past; the
other, the future."

The name of Lincoln is now a household word.  But little can be
written of him that is not already known to the world.  Nothing
that can be uttered or withheld can add to, or detract from, his
imperishable fame.  But it must be remembered that his great
opportunity and fame came after the stirring events separated from
us by the passing of fifty years.  It is not the Lincoln of history,
but Lincoln the country lawyer, the debater, the candidate of
his party for political office, with whom we have now to do.  Born
in Kentucky, much of his early life was spent in Indiana, and
all his professional and public life up to his election to the
Presidency, in Illinois.  His early opportunities for study,
like those of Douglas, were meagre indeed.  Neither had had the
advantage of the thorough training of the schools.  Of both it
might truly have been said, "They knew men rather than books."  From
his log-cabin home upon the Sangamon, Mr. Lincoln had in his early
manhood volunteered, and was made captain of his company, in what was
so well known to the early settlers of Illinois as the Black
Hawk War.  Later on, he was surveyor of his county, and three times
a member of the State Legislature.  At the time of the debates with
Senator Douglas, Mr. Lincoln had for many years been a resident of
Springfield, and a recognized leader of the bar.  As an advocate,
he had probably no superior in the State.  During the days of
the Whig party he was an earnest exponent of its principles, and
an able champion of its candidates.  As such, he had in successive
contests eloquently presented the claims of Harrison, Clay, Taylor,
and Scott to the Presidency.  In 1846, he was elected a Representative
in Congress, and upon his retirement he resumed the active practice
of his profession.  Upon the dissolution of the Whig party, he cast
in his fortunes with the new political organization, and was in
very truth one of the builders of the Republican party.  At its
first national convention, in 1856, he received a large vote for
nomination to the Vice-Presidency, and during the memorable campaign
of that year canvassed the State in advocacy of the election of
Fremont and Dayton, the candidates of the Philadelphia convention.

In the year 1858--that of the great debates--Douglas was the better
known of the opposing candidates in the country at large.  In a
speech then recently delivered in Springfield, Mr. Lincoln said:

"There is still another disadvantage under which we labor and to
which I will ask your attention.  It arises out of the relative
positions of the two persons who stand before the State as candidates
for the Senate.  Senator Douglas is of world-wide renown.  All the
anxious politicians of his party have been looking upon him as
certainly at no distant day to be the President of the United
States.  They have seen in his ruddy, jolly, fruitful face,
postoffices, land-offices, marshalships, and cabinet appointments,
and foreign missions, bursting and sprouting out in wonderful
exuberance, ready to be laid hold of by their greedy hands.  On
the contrary, nobody has ever seen in my poor lank face that any
cabbages were sprouting out."

Both, however, were personally well known in Illinois.  Each was
by unanimous nomination the candidate of his party.  Douglas had
known sixteen years of continuous service in one or the other House
of Congress.  In the Senate, he had held high debate with
Seward, Sumner, and Chase from the North, and during the last
session--since he had assumed a position of antagonism to the
Buchanan administration--had repeatedly measured swords with Tombs,
Benjamin, and Jefferson Davis, chief among the great debaters of
the South.

Mr. Lincoln's services in Congress had been limited to a single
term in the lower house, and his great fame was yet to be achieved,
not as a legislator, but as Chief Executive during the most critical
years of our history.

Such, in brief, were the opposing candidates as they entered the
lists of debate at Ottawa, on the twenty-first day of August, 1858.
Both were in the prime of manhood, thoroughly equipped for the
conflict, and surrounded by throngs of devoted friends.  Both were
gifted with remarkable forensic powers and alike hopeful as to the
result.  Each recognizing fully the strength of his opponent,
his own powers were constantly at their tension.

  "the blood more stirs
  To rouse a lion than to start a hare."

In opening, Senator Douglas made brief reference to the political
condition of the country prior to the year 1854.  He said:

"The Whig and the Democratic were the two great parties then in
existence; both national and patriotic, advocating principles that
were universal in their application; while these parties differed in
regard to banks, tariff, and sub-treasury, they agreed on the
slavery question which now agitates the Union.  They had adopted
the compromise measures of 1850 as the basis of a full solution of
the slavery question in all its forms; that these measures had
received the endorsement of both parties in their National Conventions
of 1852, thus affirming the right of the people of each State
and Territory to decide as to their domestic institutions for
themselves; that this principle was embodied in the bill reported by
me in 1854 for the organization of the Territories of Kansas and
Nebraska; in order that there might be no misunderstanding,
these words were inserted in that bill:  'It is the true intent
and meaning of this act, not to legislate slavery into any State
or Territory, or to exclude it therefrom, but to leave the
people thereof perfectly free to form and regulate their domestic
institutions in their own way, subject only to the Federal

Turning to his opponent, he said:

"I desire to know whether Mr. Lincoln to-day stands as he did in
1854 in favor of the unconditional repeal of the Fugitive Slave
Law; whether he stands pledged to-day as he did in 1854 against
the admission of any more slave States into the Union, even if the
people want them; whether he stands pledged against the admission of
a new State into the Union with such a Constitution as the people of
that State may see fit to make.  I want to know whether he
stands to-day pledged to the abolition of slavery in the District of
Columbia; I desire to know whether he stands pledged to prohibit
slavery in all the Territories of the United States north as well as
south of the Missouri Compromise line.  I desire him to answer
whether he is opposed to acquisition of any more territory
unless slavery is prohibited therein.  I want his answer to
these questions."

Douglas then addressed himself to the already quoted words of
Mr. Lincoln's Springfield speech commencing:  "A house divided
against itself cannot stand."  He declared the Government had
existed for seventy years divided into free and slave States as
our fathers made it; that at the time the Constitution was framed there
were thirteen States, twelve of which were slave-holding, and one a
free State; that if the doctrine preached by Mr. Lincoln that
all should be free or all slave had prevailed, the twelve would
have overruled the one, and slavery would have been established by
the Constitution on every inch of the Republic, instead of being
left, as our fathers wisely left it, for each State to decide
for itself.  He then declared that:

"Uniformity in the local laws and institutions of the different
States is neither possible nor desirable; that if uniformity had
been adopted when the Government was established it must inevitably
have been the uniformity of slavery everywhere, or the uniformity of
negro citizenship and negro equality everywhere.  I hold that
humanity and Christianity both require that the negro shall have
and enjoy every right and every privilege and every immunity
consistent with the safety of the society in which he lives.
The question then arises, What rights and privileges are consistent
with the public good?  This is a question which each State and each
Territory must decide for itself.  Illinois has decided it for

He then said:

"Now, my friends, if we will only act conscientiously upon this
great principle of popular sovereignty, it guarantees to each State
and Territory the right to do as it pleases on all things local
and domestic; instead of Congress interfering, we will continue at
peace one with another.  This doctrine of Mr. Lincoln of uniformity
among the institutions of the different States is a new doctrine
never dreamed of by Washington, Madison, or the framers of the
Government.  Mr. Lincoln and his party set themselves up as wiser than
the founders of the Government, which has flourished for seventy
years under the principle of popular sovereignty, recognizing
the right of each State to do as it pleased.  Under that principle,
we have grown from a nation of three or four millions to one of
thirty millions of people.  We have crossed the mountains and filled
up the whole Northwest, turning the prairies into a garden, and
building up churches and schools, thus spreading civilization
and Christianity where before there was nothing but barbarism.
Under that principle we have become from a feeble nation the
most powerful upon the face of the earth, and if we only adhere to
that principle we can go forward increasing in territory, in power,
in strength, and in glory, until the Republic of America shall
be the North Star that shall guide the friends of freedom throughout
the civilized world.  I believe that his new doctrine preached by
Mr. Lincoln will dissolve the Union if it succeeds; trying to array
all the Northern States in one body against the Southern; to excite
a sectional war between the free States and the slave States in
order that one or the other may be driven to the wall."

Mr. Lincoln said in reply:

"I think and will try to show, that the repeal of the Missouri
Compromise is wrong--wrong in its direct effect, letting slavery
into Kansas and Nebraska; wrong in its prospective principle,
allowing it to spread to every other part of the wide world where
men can be found inclined to take it.  This declared indifference,
but as I must think covert zeal for the spread of slavery, I cannot
but hate.  I hate it because of the monstrous injustice of slavery
itself.  I hate it because it deprives our Republic of an example of
its just influence in the world--enables the enemies of free
institutions with plausibility to taunt us as hypocrites.  I have no
prejudices against the Southern people; they are just what we would
be in their situation.  If slavery did now exist amongst us we
would not instantly give it up.  This I believe of the masses North
and South.  When the Southern people tell us they are no more
responsible for the origin of slavery than we, I acknowledge the
fact.  When it is said that the institution exists, and that it is
very difficult to get rid of in any satisfactory way, I can understand
and appreciate the same.  I surely will not blame them for what
I should not know how to do myself.  If all earthly powers were
given me, I should not know what to do as to the existing

Declaring that he did not advocate freeing the negroes, and making
them our political and social equals, but suggesting that
gradual systems of emancipation might be adopted by the States, he
added, "But for their tardiness in this, I will not undertake to
judge our brethren of the South.  But all this to my judgment
furnishes no more excuse for permitting slavery to go into our free
territory than it would for reviving the African slave trade by

He then added:

"I have no purpose directly or indirectly to interfere with the
institution of slavery in the States where it exists.  I believe I
have no lawful right to do so, and I have no inclination to do so.
I have no purpose to introduce political and social equality between
the white and black races.  But I hold that notwithstanding all
this there is no reason in the world why the negro is not entitled
to all the natural rights enumerated in the Declaration of
Independence, the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of
happiness.  I hold that he is as much entitled to these as the
white man.  I agree with Judge Douglas he is not my equal in
many respects--certainly not in color, perhaps not in moral and
intellectual endowment.  But in the right to eat the bread, without
the leave of anybody else, which his own hand earns, he is my equal,
and the equal of Judge Douglas, and the equal of every living man."

Referring to the quotation from his Springfield speech of the words,
"A house divided against itself cannot stand," he said:

"Does the Judge say it can stand?  If he does, then there is a
question of veracity, not between him and me, but between the Judge
and an authority of somewhat higher character.  I leave it to you to
say whether, in the history of our Government, the institution
of slavery has not only failed to be a bond of union, but on the
contrary been an apple of discord and an element of division in
the house.  If so, then I have a right to say that in regard to
this question the Union is a house divided against itself; and when
the Judge reminds me that I have often said to him that the
institution of slavery has existed for eighty years in some States
and yet it does not exist in some others, I agree to that fact,
and I account for it by looking at the position in which our fathers
originally placed it--restricting it from the new Territories where
it had not gone, and legislating to cut off its source by abrogation
of the slave trade, thus putting the seal of legislation against
its spread, the public mind did rest in the belief that it was
in the course of ultimate extinction.  Now, I believe if we
could arrest its spread and place it where Washington and Jefferson
and Madison placed it, it would be in the course of ultimate
extinction, and the public mind would--as for eighty years past
--believe that it was in the course of ultimate extinction."

Referring further to his Springfield speech, he declared that he
had no thought of doing anything to bring about a war between
the free and slave States; that he had no thought in the world that
he was doing anything to bring about social and political equality
of the black and white races.

Pursuing this line of argument, he insisted that the first step in
the conspiracy, the passage of the Kansas-Nebraska Bill, followed soon
by the Dred Scott Decision--the latter fitting perfectly into
the niche left by the former--"in such a case, we feel it impossible
not to believe that Stephen and Franklin, Roger and James, all
understood one another from the beginning, and all worked upon a
common plan or draft drawn before the first blow was struck."

In closing, Douglas, after indignant denial of the charge of
conspiracy, said:

"I have lived twenty-five years in Illinois; I have served you with
all the fidelity and ability which I possess, and Mr. Lincoln is
at liberty to attack my public action, my votes, and my conduct,
but when he dares to attack my moral integrity by a charge of
conspiracy between myself, Chief Justice Taney, and the Supreme
Court and two Presidents of the United States, I will repel it."

At Freeport, Mr. Lincoln, in opening the discussion, at once declared
his readiness to answer the interrogatories propounded.  He said:

"I do not now, nor ever did, stand in favor of the unconditional
repeal of the Fugitive Slave Law; I do not now, nor ever did, stand
pledged against the admission of any more slave States into the
Union; I do not stand pledged against the admission of a new State
into the Union with such a Constitution as the people of that State
may see fit to make; I do not stand to-day pledged to the abolition
of slavery in the District of Columbia; I do not stand pledged
to the prohibition of the slave trade between the different States;
I am impliedly, if not expressly, pledged to a belief in the right
and duty of Congress to prohibit slavery in all the United
States Territories."

Waiving the form of the interrogatory, as to being pledged, he said:

"As to the first one in regard to the Fugitive Slave Law, I have
never hesitated to say, and I do not now hesitate to say, that I
think under the Constitution of the United States the people of
the Southern States are entitled to a Congressional Fugitive Slave
Law.  Having said that, I have had nothing to say in regard to the
existing Fugitive Slave Law further than that I think it should
have been framed so as to be free from some of the objections that
pertain to it without lessening its efficiency.  In regard to
whether I am pledged to the admission of any more slave States into
the Union, I would be exceedingly glad to know that there would
never be another slave State admitted into the Union; but I must
add that if slavery shall be kept out of the Territories during
the Territorial existence of any one given Territory, and then the
people shall, having a fair chance and a clear field when they come
to adopt the Constitution, do such an extraordinary thing as to
adopt a slavery Constitution uninfluenced by the actual presence
of the institution among them, I see no alternative, if we own the
country, but to admit them into the Union.  I should be exceedingly
glad to see slavery abolished in the District of Columbia.  I
believe that Congress possesses Constitutional power to abolish
it.  Yet, as a member of Congress, I should not be in favor of
endeavoring to abolish slavery in the District of Columbia unless it
would be upon these conditions:  First, that the abolition should be
gradual; second, that it should be on a vote of the majority of
qualified voters in the district; third, that compensation should be
made unwilling owners.  With these conditions, I confess I should be
exceedingly glad to see Congress abolish slavery in the District of
Columbia, and in the language of Henry Clay, 'Sweep from our Capital
that foul blot upon our nation.'"

These carefully prepared answers will never cease to be of profound
interest to the student of human affairs.  They indicate unmistakably
the conservative tendency of Mr. Lincoln, and his position at
the time as to the legal status of the institution of slavery.
But "courage mounteth with occasion."  Five years later, and from the
hand that penned the answers given came the great proclamation
emancipating a race.  The hour had struck--and slavery perished.
The compromises upon which it rested were, in the mighty upheaval,
but as the stubble before the flame.

Recurring to the Freeport debates, Mr. Lincoln propounded to his
opponent four interrogatories as follows:

"First, if the people of Kansas shall by means entirely unobjectionable
in all other respects adopt a State Constitution and ask admission
into the Union under it before they have the requisite number of
inhabitants according to the bill--some ninety-three thousand--
will you vote to admit them?  Second, can the people of a United
States Territory in any lawful way, against the wish of any citizen
of the United States, exclude slavery from its limits prior to the
formation of a State Constitution?  Third, if the Supreme Court of
the United States shall decide that States cannot exclude slavery from
their limits, are you in favor of acquiescing in, adopting, and
following such decision as a rule of political action?  Fourth,
are you in favor of acquiring additional territory in disregard of
how such acquisition may affect the nation on the slavery question?"

The questions propounded reached the marrow of the controversy,
and were yet to have a much wider field for discussion.  This
was especially true of the second of the series.  Upon this widely
divergent--irreconcilable--views were entertained by Northern
and Southern Democrats.  The evidence of this is to be found in
the respective national platforms upon which Douglas and Mr.
Breckenridge were two years later rival candidates of a divided
party.  The second interrogatory of Mr. Lincoln clearly emphasized
this conflict of opinion as it existed at the time of the debates.
It is but just, however, to Douglas--of whom little that is kindly
has in late years been spoken--to say that there was nothing in
the question to cause him surprise or embarrassment.  It would
be passing strange if during the protracted debates with
Senators representing extreme and antagonistic views, a matter
so vital as the interpretation of the Kansas-Nebraska Act--as
indicated by the interrogatory--had never been under discussion.
Conclusive evidence on this point is to be found in the speech
delivered by Senator Douglas at Bloomington, July 16, forty-two
days before the Freeport debate, in which he said:

"I tell you, my friends, it is impossible under our institutions
to force slavery on an unwilling people.  If this principle of
popular sovereignty, asserted in the Nebraska Bill, be fairly
carried out by letting the people decide the question for themselves
by a fair vote, at a fair election, and with honest returns, slavery
will never exist one day or one hour in any Territory against
the unfriendly legislation of an unfriendly people.  Hence if
the people of a Territory want slavery they will encourage it by
passing affirmatory laws, and the necessary police regulations; if
they do not want it, they will withhold that legislation, and by
withholding it slavery is as dead as if it were prohibited by a
Constitutional prohibition.  They could pass such local laws and
police regulations as would drive slavery out in one day or one
hour if they were opposed to it, and therefore, so far as the
question of slavery in the Territories is concerned in its practical
operation, it matters not how the Dred Scott case may be decided
with reference to the Territories.  My own opinion on that point
is well known.  It is shown by my vote and speeches in Congress."

Recurring again to the Freeport debate, in reply to the first
interrogatory, Douglas declared that in reference to Kansas it was
his opinion that if it had population enough to constitute a slave
State, it had people enough for a free State; that he would not
make Kansas an exceptional case to the other States of the Union; that
he held it to be a sound rule of universal application to require a
Territory to contain the requisite population for a member of
Congress before its admission as a State into the Union; that it
having been decided that Kansas has people enough for a slave State,
"I hold it has enough for a free State."

As to the third interrogatory, he said that only one man in the
United States, an editor of a paper in Washington, had held such
view, and that he, Douglas, had at the time denounced it on the
floor of the Senate; that Mr. Lincoln cast an imputation upon
the Supreme Court by supposing that it would violate the Constitution;
that it would be an act of moral treason that no man on the
bench could ever descend to.  To the fourth--which he said was very
"ingeniously and cunningly put"--he answered that, whenever it
became necessary in our growth and progress to acquire more territory
he was in favor of it without reference to the question of slavery,
and when we had acquired it, he would leave the people to do as they
pleased, either to make it free, or slave territory as they

The answer to the second interrogatory--of which much has been
written--was given without hesitation.  Language could hardly be
more clear or effective.  He said:

"To the next question propounded to me I answer emphatically, as
Mr. Lincoln has heard me answer a hundred times, that in my opinion
the people of a Territory can by lawful means exclude slavery from
their limits prior to the formation of a State Constitution.  It
matters not what way the Supreme Court may hereafter decide as
to the abstract question whether slavery may or may not go into
a Territory under the Constitution, the people have the lawful
means to introduce it or exclude it, as they please, for the reason
that slavery cannot exist a day, or an hour anywhere, unless it is
supported by local police regulations.  These police regulations
can only be established by the local Legislature, and if the people
are opposed to slavery they will elect representatives to that body
who will by unfriendly legislation effectually prevent the introduction
of it into their midst.  If, on the contrary, they are for it, their
Legislature will favor its extension.  Hence, no matter what the
decision of the Supreme Court may be on that abstract question,
still the right of the people to make a slave Territory or a free
Territory is perfect and complete under the Nebraska Bill."

The trend of thought, the unmeasured achievement of activities
looking to human amelioration, during the fifty intervening years,
must be taken into the account before uncharitable judgment
upon what has been declared the indifference of Douglas to the
question of abstract right involved in the memorable discussion.
It must be remembered that the world has moved apace, and that a
mighty gulf separates us from that eventful period, in which
practical statesmen were compelled to deal with institutions as
then existing.  And not to be forgotten are the words of the great
interpreter of the human heart,

  "But know thou this, that men are as the time is."

The great debates between Douglas and Lincoln--the like of which
we shall not hear again--had ended and passed to the domain of
history.  To the inquiry, "Which of the participants was the victor?"
there can be no absolute answer.  Judged by the immediate result, the
former; by consequence more remote and far-reaching, the latter.
Within three years from the first meeting at Ottawa, Mr. Lincoln
--having been elected and inaugurated President--was upon the
threshold of mighty events which are now the masterful theme of
history; and his great antagonist in the now historic debates
had passed from earthly scenes.

It has been said that Douglas was ambitious.

  "If it were so, it was a grievous fault,
  And grievously hath he answered it."

We may well believe that, with like honorable ambition to the
two great popular leaders of different periods--Clay and Blaine
--his goal was the Presidency.

In the last three national conventions of his party preceding
his death, he was presented by the Illinois delegation to be named
for the great office.  The last of these--the Charleston convention
of 1860--is now historic.  It assembled amid intense party passion,
and after a turbulent session that seemed the omen of its approaching
doom, adjourned to a later day to Baltimore.  Senator Douglas there
received the almost solid vote of the Northern, and a portion of
that of the Border States, but the hostility of the extreme Southern
leaders to his candidacy was implacable to the end.  What had seemed
inevitable from the beginning at length occurred, and the great
historical party--which had administered the Government with brief
intermissions from the inauguration of Jefferson--was hopelessly
rent asunder.  This startling event--and what it might portend--
gave pause to thoughtful men of all parties.  It was not a mere
incident, but an epoch in history.  Mr. Blaine, in his "Twenty
Years of Congress," says:

"The situation was the cause of solicitude and even grief with
thousands to whom the old party was peculiarly endeared.  The
traditions of Jefferson, of Madison, of Jackson, were devoutly
treasured; and the splendid achievements of the American Democracy
were recounted with the pride which attaches to an honorable family
inheritance.  The fact was recalled that the Republic had grown to
its imperial dimensions under Democratic statesmanship.  It was
remembered that Louisiana had been acquired from France, Florida
from Spain, the independent Republic of Texas annexed, and California,
with its vast dependencies, and its myriad millions of treasure,
ceded by Mexico, all under Democratic administrations, and in spite
of the resistance of their opponents.  That a party whose history was
inwoven with the glory of the Republic should now come to its end in
a quarrel over the status of the negro in a country where his labor
was not wanted, was to many of its members as incomprehensible
as it was sorrowful and exasperating.  They might have restored
the party to harmony, but at the very height of the factional
contest, the representatives of both sections were hurried forward
to the National Convention of 1860, with principle subordinated to
passion, with judgment displaced by a desire for revenge."

The withdrawal from the Baltimore Convention of a large majority
of the Southern delegates and a small following, led by Caleb
Cushing and Benjamin F. Butler from the North, resulted in the
immediate nomination by the requisite two-thirds vote of Senator
Douglas as the Presidential candidate.  The platform upon the
question of slavery was in substance that contended for by the
candidate in the debates with Lincoln.  The Democratic party divided
--Breckenridge receiving the support of the South--Douglas's
candidacy was hopeless from the beginning.  But his iron will, and
courage, that knew no faltering, never appeared to better advantage
than during that eventful canvass.  Deserted by former political
associates, he visited distant States and addressed immense audiences
in defence of the platform upon which he had been nominated, and
in advocacy of his own election.  His speeches in Southern States were
of the stormy incidents of a struggle that has scarcely known a
parallel.  Interrogated by a prominent citizen at Norfolk, Virginia,
"If Lincoln be elected President, would the Southern States be
justified in seceding from the Union?" Douglas replied, "I emphatically
answer, No.  The election of a man to the Presidency in conformity
with the Constitution of the United States would not justify an
attempt to dissolve the Union."

Defeated in his great ambition, broken in health, the sad witness of
the unmistakable portents of the coming sectional strife--the
few remaining months of his mortal life were enveloped in gloom.
Partisan feeling vanished--his deep concern was now only for his
country.  Standing by the side of his successful rival--whose
wondrous career was only opening, as his own was nearing its close
--he bowed profound assent to the imperishable utterances of the
inaugural address:  "I am loath to close.  We are not enemies but
friends.  We must not be enemies.  Though passion may have strained,
it must not break our bonds of affection."

Yet later--immediately upon the firing of the fatal shot at Sumter
that suddenly summoned millions from peaceful pursuits to arms--
by invitation of the Illinois Legislature Douglas addressed his
countrymen for the last time.

Broken with the storms of state, the fires of ambition forever
extinguished, standing upon the threshold of the grave, his soul
burdened with the calamities that had befallen his country, in
tones of deepest pathos he declared:

"If war must come--if the bayonet must be used to maintain the
Constitution--I can say before God, my conscience is clear.  I have
struggled long for a peaceful solution of the trouble.  I deprecate
war, but if it must come, I am with my country, and for my country,
in every contingency, and under all circumstances.  At all hazards
our Government must be maintained, and the shortest pathway to
peace is through the most stupendous preparation for war."

Who that heard the last public utterance that fell from his lips
can forget his solemn invocation to all who had followed his
political fortunes, until the banner had fallen from his hand,--
to know only their country in its hour of peril?

The ordinary limit of human life unreached; his intellectual strength
unabated; his loftiest aspirations unrealized; at the critical
moment of his country's sorest need--he passed to the grave.  What
reflections and regrets may have been his in that hour of awful
mystery, we may not know.  In the words of another:  "What blight and
anguish met his agonized eyes, whose lips may tell? what brilliant
broken plans, what bitter rending of sweet household ties, what sundering
of strong manhood's friendships?"

In the light of what has been discussed, may we not believe that
with his days prolonged, he would during the perilous years have
been the safe counsellor--the rock--of the great President, in
preserving the nation's life, and later in "binding up the nation's

Worthy of honored and enduring place in history, Stephen A. Douglas
--statesman and patriot--lies buried within the great city whose
stupendous development is so largely the result of his own wise
forecast and endeavor,--by the majestic lake whose waves break near
the base of his stately monument and chant his eternal requiem.



By all odds, the most venerable in appearance of the Representatives
in the forty-sixth Congress, was Hendrick B. Wright of Pennsylvania.
After a retirement of a third of a century, he had been returned
to the seat he had honored while many of his present associates
were in the cradle.  Of massive build, stately bearing, lofty
courtesy; neatly appareled in blue broadcloth, with brass buttons
appropriately in evidence, he appeared indeed to belong to a
past generation of statesmen.

  "And thus he bore without abuse
  The grand old name of gentleman."

In one of the many conversations I held with him, he told me that he
was the president of the Democratic National Convention which met in
Baltimore in 1844.  As will be remembered, a majority of the
delegates to that convention were favorable to the renomination of
Mr. Van Buren, but his recently published letter opposing the
annexation of Texas had rendered him extremely obnoxious to a
powerful minority of his own party.  After a protracted struggle, Mr.
Van Buren, under the operation of the "two-thirds rule," was
defeated, and Mr. Polk nominated.  The convention, anxious to
placate the friends of the defeated candidate, then tendered the
nomination for Vice-President to Senator Silas Wright, the close
friend of Mr. Van Buren.

At the time the convention was in session, Samuel F. B. Morse
was conducting in a room in the Capitol the electrical experiments
which have since "given his name to the ages."  Under an appropriation
by Congress, a telegraph line had been recently constructed from
Washington to Baltimore.

Immediately upon the nomination of Senator Wright, as mentioned,
the president of the convention sent him by the Morse telegraph
a brief message, the first of a political character that ever passed
over the wire, advising him of his nomination, and requesting
his acceptance.  Two hours later he read to the convention a message
from Senator Wright, then in Washington, peremptorily declining
the nomination.

Upon the reading of this message to the convention, it was
openly declared to be a hoax, not one member in twenty believing
that a message could possibly have been received.  The convention
adjourned till the next day, first instructing its president to
communicate with Senator Wright by letter.  A special messenger, by
hard riding and frequent change of horse, bore the letter of the
convention to Wright in Washington, and returned with his reply by
the time the convention had reassembled.  As will be remembered, Wright
persisting in his declination, George M. Dallas was nominated and duly

Later, in conversation with the Hon. Alexander H. Stephens of
Georgia, he told me that he was in the room of the Capitol set
apart for the experiments which Mr. Morse wished to make, and
distinctly remembered the fact of the transmission of the message to
and from Senator Wright, as stated.

The incident mentioned recalls something of the obstacles encountered
by Morse in the marvellous work with which his name is inseparably
associated.  He first conceived the idea of an electro-magnetic
telegraph on shipboard on a homeward-bound voyage from Europe in
1832.  Before landing from his long voyage, his plans for a series
of experiments had been clearly thought out.  Having constructed
his first recording apparatus, his caveat for a patent was filed
five years later; and in 1838, he applied to Congress for an
appropriation to enable him to construct an experimental line from
Washington to Baltimore in order to demonstrate the practicability
of his invention.  His proposal was at first treated with ridicule
--even with contempt; and for more than three years no favorable
action was taken by Congress.  With abiding faith, however, in the
merits of his invention, his zeal knew no abatement during years of
poverty and discouragement.  At length in the Twenty-seventh
Congress, Representative Kennedy of Maryland--at a later day
Secretary of the Navy--introduced a bill appropriating thirty
thousand dollars "to test the value of Morse's Electro-Magnetic
Telegraph," to be expended under the direction of the Secretary of
the Treasury.

By the untiring efforts of Mr. Kennedy and other Representatives, the
bill was finally brought before the House for consideration near
the close of the session.  In the light of events, the discussion that
immediately preceded the vote is of interest, and in no small degree
amusing, to this generation.   On February twenty-first, 1843, Mr.
Johnson of Tennessee wished to say a word upon the bill.  As the
present Congress had done much to encourage science, he did not
wish to see the science of Mesmerism neglected and overlooked.  He
therefore proposed that one-half of the appropriation be given
to Mr. Fisk to enable him to carry on experiments as well as
Professor Morse.  Mr. Houston thought that Millerism should also
be included in the benefits of the appropriation.  Mr. Stanley said
he should have no objection to the appropriation for Mesmeric
experiments provided the gentleman from Tennessee was the subject.
Mr. Johnson said he should have no objection provided Mr. Stanley was
the operator.  Several gentlemen now called for the reading of the
amendment, and it was read by the clerk as follows:  "Provided that
one-half of the said sum shall be appropriated for trying Mesmeric
experiments under the direction of the Secretary of the Treasury."

Mr. Mason arose to a question of order.  He maintained that the
amendment was not _bona fide,_ and that such amendments were
calculated to injure the character of the House.  He appealed to
the Chair, the House being then in committee of the whole, to rule
the amendment out of order.

The Chairman said that it was not for him to judge of the motives of
members who offered amendments, and that he could not therefore
undertake to pronounce the amendment not _bona fide._  Objection
might be raised to it on the ground that it was not sufficiently
analogous in character to the bill under consideration; but, in
the opinion of the Chair, it would require a scientific analysis
to determine how far the magnetism of mesmerism was analogous to
that employed in telegraphs.  He therefore ruled the amendment
in order.

The amendment was rejected.  The bill was subsequently reported
favorably to the House, and two days later passed by the close vote
of eighty-nine to eighty-three.

The bill then went to the Senate, and was placed upon the calendar.
A large number of bills were ahead of it, and Mr. Morse was assured
by a kindly Senator that there was no possible chance for its
consideration.  All hope seemed to forsake the great inventor, as,
from his seat in the gallery, he was a gloomy witness of the waning
hours of the session.  Unable longer to endure the strain, he sought
his humble dwelling an hour before final adjournment.  On
arising the next morning, a little girl, the daughter of a faithful
friend, ran up to him with a message from her father, to the effect
that in the hurry and confusion of the midnight hour, and just
before the close of the session, the Senate had passed his bill,
which immediately received the signature of the President.

With the sum thus appropriated at his command, Morse now earnestly
resumed the experiments, which a few months later resulted so
successfully.  Referring to the homeward voyage from Europe, in
1832, his biographer says:

"One day Dr. Charles S. Jackson of Boston, a fellow passenger,
described an experiment recently made in Paris by means of which
electricity had been instantaneously transmitted through a great
length of wire; to which Morse replied, 'If that be so, I see no
reason why messages may not instantaneously be transmitted by

The key-note was struck, and before his ship reached New York
the invention of the telegraph was virtually made, and even the
essential features of the electro-magnetic transmitting and recording
apparatus were sketched on paper.  Of necessity, in reaching
this result, Morse made use of the ideas and discoveries of many
other minds.  As stated by his biographer:

"Various forms of telegraphic intercourse had been devised before;
electro-magnetism had been studied by _savants_ for many years;
Franklin even had experimented with the transmission of electricity
through great lengths of wire.  It was reserved for Morse to combine
the results of many fragmentary and unsuccessful attempts, and put
them, after many years of trial, to a practical use; and though
his claims to the invention have been many times attacked in the
press and in the courts, they have been triumphantly vindicated
alike by the law and the verdict of the people, both at home and
abroad.  The Chief Justice of the United States in delivering
the opinion of the Supreme Court in one of the Morse cases, said:
'It can make no difference whether the inventor derived his
information from books or from conversation with men skilled in
the science; and the fact that Morse sought and obtained the
necessary information and counsel from the best sources and
acted upon it, neither impairs his right as an inventor, nor detracts
from his merits.'"

It will be remembered that soon after his first successful experiment,
Morse was harassed by protracted litigation, and that many attempts
were made to deprive him of the just rewards of his great invention.
True, he had been preceded along the same lines by great discoveries.
This fact no man recognized more unreservedly than himself.  He
was the inventor, his work, that of gathering up and applying the
marvellous discoveries of others to the practical purposes of human
life.  As stated by Mr. Garfield:

"His to interpret to the world that subtle and mysterious element with
which the thinkers of the human race had so long been occupied.
As Franklin had exhibited the relation between lightning and the
electric fluid, so Oersted exhibited the relation between magnetism
and electricity.  From 1820 to 1825, his discovery was further
developed by Davy and Sturgeon of England, and Arago and Ampere of
France.  The electro-magnetic telegraph is the embodiment, I might
say the incarnation, of many centuries of thought, of many generations
of effort to elicit from Nature one of her deepest mysteries.
No one man, no one century, could have achieved it.  It is the
child of the human race, the heir of all ages.  How wonderful
are the steps that led to its creation!  The very name of this
telegraphic instrument bears record of its history--Electric,

"The first, named from the bit of yellow amber whose qualities
of attraction and repulsion were discovered by a Grecian philosopher
twenty-four centuries ago, and the second, from Magnesia, the
village of Asia Minor where first was found the lodestone, whose
touch turned the needle forever toward the north.  These were
the earliest forms in which that subtle, all-pervading force revealed
itself to men.  In the childhood of the race men stood dumb in the
presence of its more terrible manifestations.  When it gleamed
in the purple aurora, or shot dusky-red from the clouds, it was
the eye-flash of an angry God before whom mortals quailed in helpless

More than three centuries ago, Shakespeare put into the mouth of
one of his creations the words,

  "I'll put a girdle round about the earth
  In forty minutes."

The words spoken in jest were in the nature of a prophecy.  After the
passing of many generations, in a country unknown to the great
bard, Morse, in the words of Mr. Cox, one of the most eloquent
of his eulogists--

"Gave to the universal people the means of speedy and accurate
intelligence, and so stormed at once the castles of the terrible
Giant Doubt and Giant Despair.  He has saved time, shortened the
hours of toil, accumulated and intensified thought by the rapidity
and terseness of electric messages.  He has celebrated treaties.
Go to the uttermost parts of the earth; go beneath the deep sea;
to the land where snows are eternal, or to the tropical realms
where the orange blooms in the air of mid-winter, and you will find
this clicking, persistent, sleepless instrument ready to give
its tireless wing to your purpose."

It was my good fortune to serve in the House of Representatives
with Mr. Stephens of Georgia, and Mr. Wood of New York, both of
whom more than a third of a century before had given their votes
in favor of the appropriation that made it possible for Morse to
prosecute experiments fraught with such stupendous blessing to our
race.  The member who reported back the bill from the Committee on
Commerce, with favorable recommendations, and then supported it by
an eloquent speech upon the floor of the House, was Robert C.
Winthrop of Massachusetts.  No public man I have ever known impressed
me more favorably than did Mr. Winthrop.  He had been the close
friend of Everett, Choate, Webster, and Clay.  He was the last
survivor of as brilliant a coterie of party leaders and statesmen as
our country has ever known.  On a visit he made to the House of
Representatives, of which he had many years before been the Speaker,
business was at once suspended, and the members from all parts
of the Great Hall gathered about him.  In a letter to the Morse
Memorial meeting in Boston, Mr. Winthrop stated that he was present
in the Capitol while the first formal messages were passing along the
magic cords between Washington and Baltimore.  He referred to the
declination read by Senator Wright in his presence, of the nomination
to the Vice-Presidency tendered him, and added:

"All this gave us the most vivid impression, not only that a new
kind of _wire-pulling_ had entered into politics, but that a
mysterious and marvellous power of the air had at length been
subdued and trained to the service of mankind."

It is an interesting fact in this connection, to note that the
little girl, Miss Ellsworth, who brought to Mr. Morse the joyful
tidings of the passage of the bill on that early May morning in
1843, was rewarded by being requested by the great inventor to
write the first message that ever passed over the wire.  When
she selected,

  "What hath God wrought,"

words to find utterance by all tongues--she builded better than
she knew, for in the words of Speaker Blaine:

"The little thread of wire placed as a timid experiment between
the national capital and a neighboring city grew, and lengthened, and
multiplied with almost the rapidity of the electric current that
darted along its iron nerves, until, within his own lifetime,
continent was bound to continent, hemisphere answered through
ocean's depths to hemisphere, and an encircled globe dashed forth his
eulogy in the unmatched eloquence of a grand achievement."

Words of praise, spoke by Dr. Prime, of the great inventor just
after he had passed from the world, to which he left such a heritage,
can never lose their interest:

"Morse in his coffin is a recollection never to fade.  He lay like
an ancient prophet or sage such as the old masters painted for
Abraham, or Isaiah.  His finely chiselled features, classical in
their mould and majestic in repose, and heavy flowing beard; the
death calm upon the brow that for eighty years had concealed a
teeming brain, and that placid beauty that lingers upon the face
of the righteous dead, as if the freed spirit had left a smile upon
its forsaken home--these are the memories that remain of the
most illustrious and honored private citizen that the New World
has yet given to mankind."



Nearly a third of a century ago, as the guest in a Washington house,
I had the opportunity of meeting Mrs. Gaines, the widow of General
Edmund P. Gaines, a distinguished officer of the War of 1812,
and Mrs. Eaton, the widow of the Hon. John H. Eaton of Tennessee, for
a number of years a Senator from that State, and later Secretary of
War during the administration of President Jackson.  Their names
suggested interesting events in our history, I gladly availed myself
of the invitation to meet them.

I found Mrs. Gaines an old lady of small stature, with a profusion
of curls, and gifted with rare powers of conversation.  She
spoke freely of her great lawsuits, one of which was then pending in
the Supreme Court of the United States.  As I listened, I thought of
the wonderful career of the little woman before me.  Few names,
a half-century ago, were more familiar to the reading public
than that of Myra Clark Gaines.  She was born in New Orleans in
the early days of the century; was the daughter of Daniel Clark,
who died in 1813, the owner of a large portion of the land upon
which the city of New Orleans was afterwards built.  She was his
only heir, and soon after attaining her majority, instituted a suit,
or series of suits, for the recovery of her property.  After years
of litigation, the seriously controverted fact of her being the
lawful heir of Daniel Clark was established, and the contest, which
was to wear out two generations of lawyers, began in dead earnest.
The value of the property involved in the litigation then exceeded
thirty millions of dollars.  At the time I saw her, she had just
arrived from her home in New Orleans to be present at the argument
of one of her suits in the Supreme Court.  She had already received
nearly six millions of dollars by successful litigation, and she
assured me that she intended to live one hundred years longer, if
necessary, to obtain her rights, and that she expected to recover every
dollar to which she was rightfully entitled.  The air of confidence
with which she spoke, and the pluck manifested in her every word
and motion, convinced me at once that the only possible question
as to her ultimate success was that of time.  And so indeed it
proved, for,

  "When like a clock worn out with eating time,
  The wheels of weary life at last stood still,"

numerous suits, in which she had been successful in the lower
courts, were still pending in the higher.

She told me with apparent satisfaction, during the interview, that
she could name over fifty lawyers who had been against her since
the beginning of her contest, all of whom were now in their graves.
Her litigation was the one absorbing thought of her life, her
one topic of conversation.

General Gaines had died many years before, and her legal battles,--
extending through several decades and against a host of adversaries,
--she had, with courage unfaltering and patience that knew no shadow
of weariness, prosecuted single-handed and alone.

In view of the enormous sums involved, the length of time consumed
in the litigation, the number and ability of counsel engaged,
and the antagonisms engendered, the records of our American courts
will be searched in vain for a parallel to the once famous suit of
Myra Clark Gaines against the city of New Orleans.

At the close of this interview, I was soon in conversation with
the older of the two ladies.  Mrs. Eaton was then near the close
of an eventful life, one indeed without an approximate parallel in
our history.  Four score years ago, there were few persons in
the village of Washington to whom "Peggy O'Neal" was a stranger.
Her father was the proprietor of a well-known, old-style tavern on
Pennsylvania Avenue, which, during the sessions of Congress,
included among its guests many of the leading statesmen of that day.
Of this number were Benton, Randolph, Eaton, Grundy, and others
equally well known.  The daughter, a girl of rare beauty, on account
of her vivacity and grace soon became a great favorite with all.
She was without question one of the belles of Washington.

It was difficult for me to realize that the care-worn face before me
was that of the charming Peggy O'Neal of early Washington days.
Distress, poverty, slander possibly, had measurably wrought the
sad change, but after all,

  "the surest poison is Time."

Traces of her former self still lingered, however, and her erect
form and dignified mien would have challenged respect in any

While yet in her teens, she had married a purser in the Navy,
who soon after died by his own hand, while on a cruise in the
Mediterranean.  A year or two after his death, with reputation
somewhat clouded, she married the Honorable John H. Eaton, then
a Senator from Tennessee.  He was many years her senior, was one
of the leading statesmen of the day, and had rendered brilliant
service in the campaign which terminated so triumphantly at New
Orleans.  He was the devoted personal and political friend of
General Jackson, his earliest biographer, and later his earnest
advocate for the Presidency.  Indeed, the movement having in view
the election of "Old Hickory" was inaugurated by Major Eaton assisted
by Amos Kendall and Francis P. Blair.

This was in 1824, before the days of national conventions.
Eaton visited several of the States in the interest of his old
commander, and secured the hearty co-operation of many of the most
influential men.  It was in large degree through his personal
efforts that the Legislatures of Pennsylvania and Tennessee proposed
the name of Andrew Jackson for the great office.

The Presidential contest of that year marked an epoch in our
political history.  It was at the close of the Monroe administration,
"the era of good feeling."  The struggle for supremacy which
immediately followed was the precursor of an era of political strife
which left its deep and lasting impress upon the country.  Of
the four candidates in the field, two were members of the outgoing
Cabinet of President Monroe:  John Quincy Adams, Secretary of State,
and William H. Crawford, Secretary of the Treasury.  The remaining
candidates were Henry Clay, the eloquent and accomplished Speaker of
the House of Representatives, and Andrew Jackson, "the hero of New
Orleans."  The candidates were all of the same party, that founded
by Jefferson; the sun of the once powerful Federalists had set,
and the Whig party was yet in the future.

No one of the candidates receiving a majority of the electoral
vote, the election devolved upon the House of Representatives.
Mr. Clay being the lowest upon the list, the choice by constitutional
requirement was to be made from his three competitors.  The influence
of the Kentucky statesman was thrown to Mr. Adams, who was duly
elected, receiving the votes of a bare majority of the States.  The
determining vote was given by the sole representative from Illinois,
the able and brilliant Daniel P. Cook, a friend of Mr. Clay.
The sad sequel was the defeat of Cook at the next Congressional
election, his immediate retirement from public life, and early and
lamented death.

Not less sad was the effect of the vote just given upon the political
fortunes of Henry Clay.  His high character and distinguished public
services were scant protection against the clamor that immediately
followed his acceptance of the office of Secretary of State tendered
him by President Adams.  "Bargain and Corruption" was the terrible
slogan of his enemies in his later struggles for the Presidency
and its echo scarcely died out with that generation.

In this connection, the bitter words spoken in the Senate by
John Randolph will be recalled:  "the coalition between the Puritan
and the blackleg."  The duel which followed, now historic, stands alone
in the fierce conflicts of men.  Whatever the faults of Randolph, let
it be remembered to his eternal honor, that after receiving at
short range the fire of Mr. Clay, he promptly discharged his own
pistol in the air.  Even after the lapse of eighty years how pleasing
these words:  "At which Mr. Clay, throwing down his own pistol,
advanced with extended hand to Mr. Randolph, who taking his hand
quietly remarked, 'You owe me a coat, Mr. Clay,' to which the latter
exclaimed, 'Thank God the obligation is no greater!'"

Immediately upon the defeat of Jackson, his friends began the
agitation which resulted in his overwhelming triumph over Adams,
in 1828.  Chief among his supporters in this, as in his former
contest, was Major Eaton.  The untiring devotion of Jackson to his
friends is well known.  It rarely found more striking illustration
than in the selection of Eaton as Secretary of War, and in the zeal
with which he sustained him through good and evil report alike,
during later years.

When it became known that Senator Eaton was to hold a seat in
the Cabinet of the new administration, the fashionable circles
of the capital were deeply agitated, and protests earnest and
vehement assailed the ears of the devoted President.  The objections
urged were not against Major Eaton, but against his beautiful
and accomplished wife.  Rumors of an exceedingly uncomplimentary
character, that had measurably died out with time, were suddenly
revived against Mrs. Eaton, and gathered force and volume with each
passing day.  It is hardly necessary to say that this hostility was,
in the main, from her own sex.  To all remonstrances and
appeals, however, President Jackson turned a deaf ear.  The kindness
shown by the mother of Mrs. Eaton to the wife of the President
during a former residence, and while he was a Senator, in Washington,
had never been forgotten.  It will be remembered that during the
late Presidential contest not only had Jackson himself been the
object of merciless attack, but even his invalid wife did not
escape.  Divorced from her first husband because of his cruel
treatment, she had married Jackson, when he was a young lawyer
in Nashville, many years before.  As the result of the aspersions cast
upon her, the once famous duel was evolved in which Charles Dickinson
fell by the hand of Jackson in 1806.

After his election, but before his inauguration, Mrs. Jackson died,
the victim of calumny as her husband always believed.  A few
days after he had turned away from that new-made grave, he was
in the turmoil of politics at the national capital.  With the past
fresh in his memory, it is not strange that he espoused the cause of
his faithful friend, and the daughter of the woman who had befriended
one dearer to him than his own life.  Thoroughly convinced of the
innocence of Mrs. Eaton, he made her cause his own, and to the end
he knew no variableness or shadow of turning.

The new administration was not far upon its tempestuous voyage
before the trouble began.  The relentless hostility of the leaders
of Washington society against Mrs. Eaton was manifested in every
possible way.  Their doors were firmly closed against her.  This, of
itself, would have been of comparatively little moment, but serious
consequences were to grow out of it.  From private parlors and
drawing-rooms the controversy soon reached the little coterie that
constituted the official family of President Jackson.  While this is
almost forgotten history now, one chapter of Jackson's biography
published soon after the events mentioned, was headed, "Mr. Van
Buren calls upon Mrs. Eaton."  As is well known, the creed in action
of the most suave of our presidents was,

  "The statues of our stately fortunes
  Are sculptured with the chisel, not the axe."

Mr. Van Buren was Secretary of State, and one of the most agreeable
and politic of statesmen.  He was in line of succession to the
great office, and understood well the importance of maintaining
his hold upon President Jackson.  A widower himself, the call upon
which so much stress was laid at the time subjected the Secretary of
State to no embarrassment at home.  Not so, however, with three of
his colleagues in the Cabinet:  Mr. Ingham, Secretary of the
Treasury, Mr. Branch of the Navy, and Mr. Berrien the Attorney-General.
The wife of each of these gentlemen refused to return Mrs. Eaton's
call, or to recognize her in any possible manner.  No remonstrance
on the part of the President could avail to secure even a formal
exchange of courtesies on the part of these ladies.  All this only
intensified the determination on the part of the President to secure
to the wife of the Secretary of War the social recognition to which
he considered her justly entitled, but it would not avail; the
purpose of the most resolute man on earth was powerless against
a determination equal to his own.  Never was more forcibly exemplified
the truth of the old couplet:

  "When a woman will, she will, you may depend on't,
  And when she won't, she won't, and there's an end on't."

As to how Mrs. Eaton meanwhile appeared to others, something may
be gleaned from the statement of a distinguished gentleman who
called at the home of the Secretary of War:

"I went to the house in the evening, and found assembled there a
large company of gentlemen who paid assiduous court to the lady.
Mrs. Eaton was not then the celebrated character she was destined ere
long to be made.  To me she seemed a strikingly beautiful and
fascinating woman, all graciousness and vivacity--the life of
the company."

That the discordant status of the households of the official advisers
of the President was the topic of discussion among leading statesmen,
may be inferred from the following extract from a letter written
at the time by Daniel Webster:

"Mr. Van Buren has evidently, at this moment, quite the lead in
influence and importance.  He controls all the pages on the back
stairs, and flatters what seems to be, at present, the Aaron's
serpent among the President's desires, a settled purpose of making
out of the lady of whom so much has been said, a person of

Of curious interest even now, is the closing sentence in Mr.
Webster's letter, in which with prophetic ken he forecasts the
effect of the Eaton controversy upon national politics:  "It is
odd enough, but too evident to be doubted, that the consequence of
this dispute in the social and fashionable world is producing great
political effects, and _may very probably determine who shall be
successor to the present chief magistrate."_

As explanatory of the above quotation, it will be remembered
that next to President Jackson, the two most prominent leaders
of the dominant party were Vice-President Calhoun and Secretary of
State Van Buren.  The political forces were even then gathering
around one or the other of these great leaders, and there was little
question in official circles that the successor to Jackson would
be either Van Buren or Calhoun.  It was equally certain that the
successful aspirant would be the one who had the good fortune to
secure the powerful influence of Jackson.  Chief among the friends
of Calhoun were the Cabinet officers Ingham, Branch, and Berrien.
The incumbent of the office of Postmaster-General--now for the
first time a Cabinet office--was William T. Barry of Kentucky.  He
was the friend of Van Buren, and in the social controversy mentioned,
he sided with the President and the Secretary of State as a champion
of Mrs. Eaton.  As to the views of the Vice-President upon the
all-absorbing question, we have no information.  Not being one
of the official advisers of the President, he probably kept entirely
aloof from a controversy no doubt in every way distasteful to him.

Meanwhile the relations between Secretary Eaton and his colleagues
of the Treasury, Navy, and Department of Justice, became more
and more unfriendly, until all communication other than of the most
formal official character ceased.  The soul of the President was
vexed beyond endurance; and as under existing conditions harmony
in his official family was impossible, he determined upon a
reorganization of his Cabinet.  To this end, the resignations of
Van Buren, Eaton, and Barry were voluntarily tendered, and promptly
accepted.  A formal request from the President to Messrs. Ingham,
Branch, and Berrien secured the resignation of these three official
advisers; and thus was brought about what is known in our political
history as "the disruption of Jackson's Cabinet."

The three gentlemen whose resignations had been voluntarily tendered,
were, in modern political parlance, at once "taken care of."
Mr. Van Buren was appointed minister to St. James, Barry to Madrid,
and Eaton to the governorship of Florida Territory.  No such
good fortune, however, was in store for either Ingham, Branch,
or Berrien.  Each was, henceforth, _persona non grata_ with President

The end, however, was not yet.  A publication by the retiring
Secretary of the Treasury contained an uncomplimentary allusion to
Mrs. Eaton, which resulted first in his receiving a challenge from
her husband, and later in a street altercation.

The almost forgotten incidents just mentioned were rapidly leading
up to matters of deep consequence.  The true significance of the
words of Webster last quoted will now appear.  A rupture, never
yet fully explained, now occurred between President Jackson and
Mr. Calhoun.  The intention of the former to secure to Mr. Van
Buren the succession to the presidency was no longer a matter of

Van Buren, "the favorite," was meanwhile reposing upon no bed of
roses.  He was, in very truth, "in the thick of events."  His
confirmation as Minister was defeated by the casting vote of
Vice-President Calhoun, after the formal presentation of his
credentials to the Court to which he had been accredited.  It
was believed that this rejection would prove the death knell to
Van Buren's Presidential hopes.  But it was not so to be.  His
rejection aroused deep sympathy, secured his nomination upon the
ticket with Jackson in 1832, and for four years he presided over
the great body which had so lately rejected his nomination, and as
is well known, four years later he was chosen to succeed Jackson
as President.  Unfortunately for Calhoun, one of the ablest and
purest of statesmen, he had incurred the hostility of Jackson, and
never attained the goal of his ambition.

During my interview with Mrs. Eaton I said to her, "Madam, you must
have known General Jackson when he was President?"  "Known General
Jackson," she replied, "known General Jackson?"  "Oh, yes," I said,
"your husband was a member of his Cabinet and of course you must
have known him.  I would like to know what kind of a man General
Jackson really was?"  "What kind of a man," replied Mrs. Eaton in a
manner and tone not easily forgotten.  "What kind of _a man_--a
god, sir, a god."  The spirit of the past seemed over her, as with
trembling voice and deep emotion she spoke of the man whose powerful
and unfaltering friendship had been her stay and bulwark during
the terrible ordeal through which she had passed.

Accompanying her that evening to the humble home provided for her by
a distant relative, she remarked, "I have seen the time, sir, when
I could have invited you to an elegant home."  She then said
that when Major Eaton died, he left for her an ample fortune but
that some years later she unfortunately married a man younger than
herself, who succeeded in getting her property into his hands
and then cruelly deserted her.

Fiction indeed seems commonplace when contrasted with the story of
real life such as this now penniless and forgotten woman had known.
Once surrounded by all that wealth could give, herself one of
the most beautiful and accomplished of women, her husband the
incumbent of exalted official position,--now, wealth, beauty,
and position vanished; the grave hiding all she loved; sitting
in silence and desolation, the memories of the long past almost
her sole companions.  When in the tide of time has there been truer
realization of the words of the great bard--

  "The web of our life is of a mingled yarn,
  Good and ill together?"



The very name "Bladensburg" is suggestive of pistol and bullet,
savors indeed of human blood.  It is associated with tragic events
that during successive generations stirred emotions of indignation
and horror that have not yet wholly died out from the memories
of men.  As the words "Baden-Baden" and "Monte Carlo" bring before
us the gambler "steeped in the colors of his trade," so the mere
mention of Bladensburg calls to mind the duellist, pistol in hand,
standing in front of his slain antagonist.

Personal difficulties are now rarely if ever in this country adjusted
by an appeal to "the code."  The custom, now universally condemned
as barbarous, was at an early day practically upheld by an
almost omnipotent public opinion.  As is well known, in many
localities to have declined an invitation to "the field of honor" from
one entitled to the designation of a "gentleman" would have entailed
not only loss of social position, but to a public man would have
been a bar to future political advancement.  Thanks to a higher
civilization, and possibly a more exalted estimate of the sacredness
of human life, the code in all our American States is a thing of
the past.

And yet, revolting as the custom now appears, it held its place as
a recognized method for the settlement of personal controversies
among "gentlemen," to a time within the memories of men still
living.  The code, a heritage from barbaric times, lingered till
it had caused more than one bloody chapter to be written, until it
had taken from the walks of life more than one of our most
gifted American statesmen.

Truer words were never written than those of Franklin at the
time when the code was appealed to for the settlement of every
dispute pertaining to personal honor:  "A duel decides nothing;
the man appealing to it, makes himself judge in his own cause,
condemns the offender without a jury, and undertakes himself to be
the executioner."  And yet, the startling record remains that in
the State of New Jersey, one of the ablest and most brilliant of
statesmen met death at the hands of an antagonist scarcely less
gifted, who was at the time Vice-President of the United States.
The survivor of an encounter equally tragic, occurring near the
banks of the Cumberland in 1806, was a little more than a score of
years later elevated to the Presidency.  The valuable life of
the Secretary of State during the administration of the younger
Adams was saved only by his antagonist magnanimously refusing to
return the fire which came within an ace of ending his own life.
Thirteen years after the Clay and Randolph duel, a member of Congress
from Maine perished in an encounter at Bladensburg with a
representative from Kentucky.  Sixty-six years ago, a challenge to
mortal combat was accepted by one who in later years was twice
elected to the Presidency.  One of the signers of the Declaration
of Independence fell in a duel with an officer of the Colonial
army, soon after that great event.  There are many yet living
who read the startling telegram from the Pacific coast that a
Senator from California had fallen in a duel with the Chief Justice
of that State, and sad as it is, this dreadful recital might be
much farther extended.

While a member of Congress many years ago, in company with
Representatives Knott and McKenzie of Kentucky I spent some hours upon
the historic duelling ground at Bladensburg, a Maryland village of
a few hundred inhabitants, six miles from the city of Washington.
Governor Knott pointed out the exact spot where Barron and Decatur
stood in the memorable duel in 1820, in which the latter was killed.
It is impossible to read the account of this fatal meeting even
after the lapse of more than four score years, without a feeling
of profound regret for the sad fate of one of the most gallant
of all the brave officers the American Navy has known.  It was
truly said of Decatur:  "He was one of the most chivalric men of
any age or country."  He was one of the little band of naval
commanders who by heroic exploits at sea did so much to redeem the
American name from the humiliation and disgrace caused by incompetent
generalship upon land, in our second war with Great Britain.
His encounters with the enemy were of frequent occurrence, and
in each instance added new laurels to our little navy.  If Commodore
Decatur had rendered no other service to his country, that of the
destruction of the Algerine pirates would alone entitle him to a
place among its benefactors.  His skill and daring when in command
of our little fleet upon the Mediterranean destroyed forever the
power of "the common enemy of mankind," avenged the insult to
our flag, and secured for the American name an honored place among
the nations of the world.

The tragic death of Decatur--recalling so much of gallant service--
has cast a spell about his name.  It belongs in the list of immortals,
with the names of Sir Walter Raleigh, Captain Lawrence, Lord Nelson,
and Oliver Hazard Perry.  Cities and counties without number
throughout our entire country have been given the honored name
of Decatur.

Commodore Barron, too, had known much active service.  For an
alleged official delinquency, he had been court-martialed near the
close of the War of 1812, and sentenced to a suspension of five
years from his command.  Smarting under this humiliation, he was
bitter in his denunciation of all who were in any way concerned in
what he regarded an act of flagrant injustice to himself.  Chief
among the officers who had incurred his displeasure was Commodore Decatur.
A protracted and at length hostile correspondence ensued between the
two, and this correspondence resulted at length in a challenge from
Barron, accepted by Decatur.  The latter had repeatedly declared
that he bore no personal hostility toward Barron.  Before going to
the fatal field he told his friend William Wirt--then the
Attorney-General of the United States--that he did not wish to meet
Barron, and that the duel was forced upon him.  When he received
the challenge, he assured a brother officer that nothing could
induce him to take the life of Barron.  In connection with this
sad affair, Mr. Wirt--who was untiring in his efforts to effect
a reconciliation--has left the record of a conversation with Decatur
in which the latter declared his hostility to the practice of
duelling, but that he was "controlled by the omnipotence of public
sentiment."  "Fighting," said he, "is my profession, and it would be
impossible for me to keep my station and preserve my respectability
without showing myself ready at all times to answer the call of
any one who bore the name of gentleman."

The hostile meeting between Barron and Decatur occurred at the
place already mentioned, March 22, 1820.  The distance was eight
paces, the weapons, pistols.  Decatur's second was Captain Bainbridge,
at a later day a distinguished admiral in our navy.  As they
took their places at the deadly range, Barron said, "I hope on
meeting in another world we will be better friends than in this."
To which Decatur replied, "I have never been your enemy, sir."  At
the word both pistols were discharged, making but a single report.
Both combatants fell.  Decatur was supported a short distance, and
sank down near his antagonist, who was severely--and as it was then
supposed, mortally--wounded.  Mr. Wirt says:

"What then occurred reminded me of the closing scenes of the tragedy
between Hamlet and Laertes.  Barron proposed that they should make
friends before they met in another world.  Decatur said he had
never been his enemy, that he freely forgave him his death, but he
could not forgive those who had stimulated him to seek his life.
Barron then said:  'Would to God you had said that much yesterday.'"

Thus they parted in peace.  Decatur knew he was to die, and his
only regret was that he had not died in the service of his country.

The last duel fought at Bladensburg was in 1838, between Jonathan Cilley
and William J. Graves.  The former was at the time a Representative
in Congress from Maine, and the latter from Kentucky.  In its main
features, this duel is without a parallel.  It was fought upon a
pure technicality.  The parties to it never exchanged an unkind
word, and were in fact, almost up to the day of the fatal meeting,
comparative strangers to each other.

Briefly related, the fatal meeting between Cilley and Graves
came about in this wise.  In a speech in the House, Mr. Cilley
in replying to an editorial in _The New York Courier and Inquirer,_
criticised severely the conduct of its proprietor, James Watson
Webb, a noted Whig editor of that day.  At this, the latter, being
deeply offended and failing to obtain a retraction by Cilley of
the offensive words, challenged him to mortal combat.  The bearer of
this challenge was William J. Graves, a prominent Whig member of
the House.  Mr. Cilley in his letter to Mr. Graves, in which he
declined to receive the challenge of Webb, said:  "I decline to
receive it because I choose to be drawn into no controversy with
him.  I neither affirm nor deny anything in regard to his character,
but I now repeat what I have said to you, that I intended by the
refusal no disrespect to you."

This letter was considered unsatisfactory by Graves, and he
immediately sent by his colleague Mr. Menifee, a note to Cilley
then in his seat in the House, saying:  "In declining to receive
Colonel Webb's communication, you do not disclaim any exception to
him personally as a gentleman.  I have, therefore, to inquire
whether you declined to receive his communication on the ground of
any personal exception to him as a gentleman or a man of honor."
Mr. Cilley declining to give the categorical answer demanded, was
immediately challenged by Graves.  The challenge was borne by
Mr. Wise, a Representative from Virginia.  On the same evening,
Mr. Jones--then a delegate and later a Senator from Iowa--as the
second of Cilley, handed the note of acceptance of the latter to
Graves.  Bladensburg was designated as the place of meeting, rifles
the weapons, the distance eight yards, the rifles to be held
horizontally at arm's length down, to be cocked and triggers set, the
words to be, "Gentlemen, are you ready?"  Some delay was occasioned
by the difficulty in procuring a suitable rifle for Mr. Graves.
This was at length obviated, as will appear from the following note
of Mr. Jones to Mr. Wise:  "I have the honor to inform you that
I have in my possession an excellent rifle, in good order, which
is at the service of Mr. Graves."  With every courtesy proper to
the occasion rigidly observed, the rifle mentioned, "through the
politeness of Dr. Duncan," was sent to Mr. Graves, and the hostile
meeting occurred at the designated time, February 24, 1838.

From the report of a special committee of the House of Representatives
at a later day appointed to investigate this affair, it appears
that Mr. Graves was accompanied to the ground by his second, Mr.
Wise, Mr. Crittenden, and Mr. Menifee, two of his colleagues,
and Dr. Foltz his surgeon.  The attendants of Mr. Cilley were
his second, Mr. Jones, Representative Bynum of North Carolina, and
Colonel Schoenberg, and Dr. Duncan as his surgeon.  The Committee's
report then continues in these words:

"Shortly after three o'clock P. M. the parties exchanged shots
according to the terms of meeting.  Mr. Cilley fired first before
he had fully elevated his piece, and Mr. Graves one or two seconds
afterwards.  Both missed.  It is to the credit of both the seconds
and to the other gentlemen in attendance, than an earnest desire
was then manifested to have the affair terminated, as will appear from
the report already mentioned."

Mr. Jones now inquired of Mr. Wise whether Mr. Graves was satisfied,
to which Mr. Wise replied:  "These gentlemen have come here without
animosity toward each other; they are fighting merely upon a point
of honor.  Cannot Mr. Cilley assign some reason for not receiving at
Mr. Graves's hands Colonel Webb's communication, or make some
disclaimer which will relive Mr. Graves from his position?"  Mr.
Jones replied:  "While the challenge is impending, Mr. Cilley can
make no explanation."  Mr. Wise said:  "The exchange of shots
suspends the challenge, and the challenge is suspended for
explanation."  Mr. Jones thereupon went to Mr. Cilley, and after
returning said:

"I am authorized by my friend Mr. Cilley to say, that in declining
to receive the note from Mr. Graves purporting to come from Colonel
Webb, he meant no disrespect to Mr. Graves because he entertained for
him then as he does now, the highest respect and the most kind
feeling; but that he declined to receive the note because he chose
not to be drawn into any controversy with Colonel Webb."

The above not being satisfactory to Mr. Graves, and Mr. Cilley
declining to make further concession, the challenge was renewed
and the parties resumed their positions and again exchanged shots.
Mr. Graves fired first, before he had fully elevated his piece;
Mr. Cilley about two seconds afterwards.  They both missed, although
the witnesses then thought from the motions and appearance of
Mr. Graves that he was hit.  The latter immediately and peremptorily
demanded another shot.

The challenge was here again, for the time, withdrawn and
another unsuccessful attempt made by the seconds to effect an
adjustment.  In the light of what was so soon to follow, it is
painful to read that all this came about and continued to the bloody
end, because Mr. Cilley in substance refused to disclaim that
his declination of Webb's challenge was for the reason that he did
not consider him a gentleman.  His repeated assurance that in doing
so, he intended no disrespect to the bearer of the challenge,
for whom he entertained the most kindly feelings, strangely enough
to us was deemed insufficient.

The challenge being renewed, the parties, after due observance
of the formalities as before, confronted each other for the third and
last time.  And now closes the official report:  "the rifles being
loaded, the parties resumed their stations, and fired the third
time very near together.  Mr. Cilley was shot through the body.
He dropped his rifle, beckoned to some one near him, and said,
'I am shot,' put both his hands to his wound, fell, and in two
or three minutes expired."

What a commentary all this upon "the code of honor"!  Upon what
appears the shadow of a technicality even, two young men of recognized
ability, chosen representatives of the people, confronted each
other in continued combat, until death closed the scene, and neither
had the slightest feeling of hostility toward the other!  This
duel, so utterly groundless in its inception and bloody in its
termination, was the last fought in Bladensburg.  Intense excitement
followed the death of the lamented Cilley and public sentiment was
deeply aroused against the horrible custom of duelling.  But the
public sentiment that existed at the time must be taken into account
before a too ready condemnation of one of the actors in this fearful
tragedy.  In announcing the death of Mr. Cilley to the Senate, Mr.
Williams of Maine said:  "In accepting the call, he did nothing
more than he believed indispensable to avoid disgrace to himself, his
family, and his constituents."

While the presiding officer of the Senate, a gentleman of small
stature and advanced age called upon me and introduced himself
as George W. Jones, former Senator from Iowa.  I have rarely met
a more interesting man.  He was then ninety-two years of age,
apparently in perfect health, and as active as if, for his exclusive
benefit, the hands had been turned back three decades upon the
dial.  He had been a delegate from the Territory embracing the
present States of Iowa and Wisconsin, in the twenty-fifth Congress,
when the sessions of the House were held in the Old Hall.  Upon the
admission of Iowa as a State, he was chosen a Senator, a position he
held by successive elections for many years.  As delegate, he
had been the associate of John Quincy Adams, and as a Senator
the contemporary of Benton, Wright, Douglas, Cass, Seward, Preston,
Clay, Calhoun, and Webster.  He had personally known some of the
men whose public life reached back to the establishment of the
Government.  He had taken part in the discussion of great questions
that have left a deep impress upon history.  As I listened to his
description of the men I have named, and of the momentous events
with which their names are associated, he seemed indeed the sole
connecting link between the present and the long past.

But what interested me most deeply in the almost forgotten old man
before me, was the fact that he was the second of the unfortunate Cilley
upon the ill-fated day at Bladensburg.  The conversation at length
turned to that event, and strangely enough, he manifested no
suggestion of embarrassment at its mention.  He spoke in the highest
terms of Mr. Cilley, as a gentleman of lofty character, of unfaltering
courage, of rare gifts, and of splendid promise.  It was evident
that the passing years had not dimmed his memory of the tragic
event, nor lessened his regret at the sad ending of an affair with
which his own name is inseparably associated.

The first duel between men of prominence in this country, was that
of Gwinett and McIntosh.  The fact that one of the parties, Button
Gwinett, was a signer of the Declaration of Independence gives
it historic interest.  He was one of the three delegates from
Georgia in the second Continental Congress, and an earnest champion
of independence.  Six years before, he had emigrated from England,
purchased a large tract of land, and devoted himself to agricultural
pursuits.  Less is known of him, probably, than of any of the
signers of the Declaration.

In 1777, he became involved in a bitter personal quarrel with
General McIntosh, an officer of the Revolution.  Deeply offended
at his conduct, Gwinett challenged him to mortal combat.  They
fought with pistols at a distance of twelve feet, and Gwinett
was killed.  He is buried at Augusta, Georgia, with his two colleagues
in the Continental Congress.

It is now an almost forgotten fact that, but for the wise counsel of
his superior officer, Nathaniel Greene, next to Washington the
ablest of the American generals, would have been a party to a duel
at a time when his services were so greatly in demand.  Soon after
his transfer to the southern army, Greene was challenged by a
captain of his command.  Fearing that a declination upon his
part would be misunderstood by his brother officers, Greene
wrote General Washington a full account of the transaction,
concluding:  "If I thought my honor or reputation would suffer
in the opinion of the world, and more especially with the military
gentlemen, I value life too little to hesitate a moment to
accept the challenge."  The answer of one of the wisest of men
possibly saved to our little army one whose loss would have been
disastrous to his country at that critical moment.  Said Washington:

"I give it as my decided opinion, that your honor and reputation
will stand not only perfectly acquitted for the non-acceptance
of his challenge, but that your prudence and judgment would have
been condemned by accepting it; because if a commanding officer is
amenable to private calls for the discharge of his public duty, he
has a dagger always at his heart, and can turn neither to the right
nor to the left without meeting its point."

The timely words of Washington had the desired effect, and very
probably saved General Greene to a brilliant career of usefulness and

One of the most interesting incidents of our Revolutionary history,
is what is known as "The Conway Cabal," the attempt to displace
Washington from the supreme command and substitute General Horatio
Gates in his stead.  The latter was then in high favor as the hero
of Saratoga and the capturer of the invading army of Burgoyne.  In
this connection, the prophetic words of the deeply embittered
General Charles Lee will be recalled.  On his way to take command of
the southern army to which he had just been assigned, Gates called
upon Lee, then in disgrace and retirement at his home.  Both
were Englishmen, had known service together in the British army,
and were at the time owners of neighboring plantations in what
is now Jefferson County, West Virginia.  When parting, Lee
significantly remarked to this old comrade, "Gates, your
Northern laurels will soon be turned into Southern willows."
The disastrous defeat at Camden soon thereafter terminated the
military career of Gates no less effectually than the timely "curse"
of Washington had terminated that of Lee upon his disgraceful
retreat at the battle of Monmouth.

The result of the "Cabal" above mentioned was a challenge from
Colonel Cadwallader to General Conway, whose name has come down to
us associated with the conspiracy to supersede Washington by Gates.
In an encounter which immediately followed, Conway was seriously
wounded.  Believing his wound to be mortal, he called for pen
and paper and did much to retrieve his reputation by writing the
following letter to Washington:

"SIR:  I find myself just able to hold my pen during a few moments
and take this opportunity of expressing my sincere grief for having
written, said, or done anything disagreeable to Your Excellency.
My career will soon be over, therefore justice and truth prompt me
to declare my last sentiments.  You are in my eyes the great and
good man.  May you long enjoy the love, esteem, and veneration
of these States whose liberties you have asserted by your virtues."

Conway eventually recovered, entered the army of France, and died in
its service.

General Charles Lee was indeed a soldier of fortune.  A native
of England, he held a commission in the British army, and later in
that of the King of Italy.  As the result of a duel in which he
slew an Italian officer, he fled to America, and tendered his
services to the Continental Congress just at the beginning of
the struggle for independence.  He was placed second in command to
Washington and was not without supporters for the coveted position
of Commander-in-chief.  He was from the beginning the enemy of
Washington, and deeply resented the fact that his position was
subordinate to that of the younger and less experienced officer,
for whose ability he expressed great contempt.  He was a friend of
Gates and one of the chief conspirators in the Conway Cabal.  His
military career closed at the battle of Monmouth, and from letters
that have come to light there is little doubt that he was then
in treasonable correspondence with the enemy.

After being deprived of his command at Monmouth, he was challenged
by Colonel John Laurens, one of the aides of the Commander-in-chief,
because of his denunciation of Washington.  The challenge was
accepted, and the parties fought with pistols in a retired spot
near Philadelphia.  Additional interest attaches to this duel from
the fact that Colonel Alexander Hamilton of Washington's staff,
was the second for Laurens.

At the first fire Lee was wounded, and then, through the interposition
of Hamilton the affair terminated.  The gratifying narrative has
come down to us that, "upon the whole, we think it a piece of
justice to the two gentlemen to declare that, after they met, their
conduct was strongly marked with all the politeness, generosity,
coolness, and firmness, that ought to characterize a transaction
of this nature."

The last years of Lee's life were spent at his Virginia plantation.
He died in an obscure boarding-house in Philadelphia, in 1782.
Upon a visit I made to his Virginia home some years ago, I was
shown a certified copy of his will, which contained this remarkable

"It is my will, that I shall not be buried within one mile of
any churchyard, or of any Presbyterian or Anabaptist church, for
the reason that _as I have kept a great deal of bad company in this
world, I do not wish to do so in the next."_

This country has known few abler or more eminent men than DeWitt
Clinton.  He was successively Mayor of the city of New York, Governor
of that State, a Senator in Congress, and in 1812 an unsuccessful
candidate for the Presidency against Mr. Madison.  Distinguished as a
lawyer and statesman, he is even better known as "the Father of the
Erie Canal."  His biographer says:

"After undergoing constant, unremitting, and factious resistance, he
had the felicity of being borne, in October, 1825, in a barge on
the artificial river--which he seemed to all to have constructed
--from Lake Erie to the Bay of New York, while bells were rung,
and cannon saluted him at every stage of that imposing progress."

In 1803, while in the Senate, Clinton accepted a challenge from
General Dayton, a Senator from New Jersey.  The ground of the
challenge was words spoken by the former in debate.  Before the
hostile meeting, however, through the interposition of friends a
satisfactory explanation upon the part of Clinton resulted in a
peaceable adjustment, and the restoration of friendly relations
between the two Senators.

An "affair of honor" in which Clinton was engaged one year earlier,
was not quite so easily adjusted.  This was with a noted politician
of that day, John Swartout of New York.  The latter was the friend
of Aaron Burr, the political and personal enemy of Clinton.  Swartout
was the challenging party, and the hostile meeting occurred near
the city of New York.  On the ground, after the parties had been
placed in position, Clinton is said to have expressed regret
that Burr--the real principal in the controversy--was not before
him.  History might have run in a different channel had such been the

Three pistol shots were exchanged without effect, at the end of
each the second of Clinton demanding of Swartout, "Are you satisfied,
sir?" to which the answer was, "I am not."  To this, at the
third exchange, was added, "neither shall I be until that apology is
made which I have demanded of Mr. Clinton."  Mr. Clinton declined to
sign a paper presented, but declared that he had no animosity
against Mr. Swartout, and would willingly shake hands and agree to
meet on the score of former friendship.  This being unsatisfactory,
the fourth shot was promptly exchanged.  Fortune, heretofore
reluctant to decide between her favorites, now leaned toward the
challenged party--Mr. Swartout being struck just below the knee.
In reply to the inquiry, "Are you satisfied, sir?" standing
erect while the surgeon kneeling beside him removed the ball, he
answered, "I am not; _proceed."_  The fifth shot being exchanged, Mr.
Swartout's other leg was the recipient of his antagonist's bullet.
The voice of the wounded man being still for war, Mr. Clinton here
threw down his pistol, declaring he would fight no longer, and
immediately retired from the ground.  The second of the remaining
belligerent now advised his principal to retire also and have his
wounds dressed, which certainly seemed reasonable under all the

An answer to a challenge that might well stand for a model for all
time, was that given during the administration of the older Adams by
Mr. Thatcher of Massachusetts, to Blount of North Carolina.  The
challenge grew out of a heated debate in the House.  In reply,
Thatcher said in substance, that being a husband and father, his
family had an interest in his life, and that he could not think of
accepting the invitation without the consent of his wife, that
he would immediately consult her, and _if successful in obtaining her
permission,_ he would meet Mr. Blount with pleasure.  Whereupon
Fisher Ames, one of the great men of the day, wittily remarked to a
bachelor colleague, "Behold now the advantage of having a wife--
God preserve us all from gunpowder!"

The reply of Thatcher was read in the House, causing much merriment
and leaving his adversary--

  "Sacred to ridicule his whole life long,
  And the sad burden of some merry song."

It is hardly necessary to add that at last accounts the consent of
Mrs. Thatcher had not been obtained.

It is scarcely remembered that Lord Byron, angered by a bitter
criticism, once challenged the poet Southey.  Accepting the challenge
conditionally, Southey added:

"In affairs of this kind, the participants ought to meet on
equal terms.  But to establish the equality between you and me
there are two things that ought to be done, and a third may also be
necessary before I meet you on the field.  First, you must marry
and have four children--all girls.  Second, you must prove that
the greater part of the provision which you make for them depends upon
you life, and you must be under bond for four thousand pounds not to
be hanged, commit suicide, nor be killed in a duel, which are
the conditions upon which I have insured my life for the benefit
of my wife and daughters.  Third, you must convert me to infidelity.
We can then meet on equal terms, _and your challenge will be
cheerfully accepted."_

Since the writing of the letters of Junius, nothing probably has
appeared equal in invective to the correspondence seventy years
ago between Daniel O'Connell and Benjamin Disraeli.  The former
was at the time a distinguished member of Parliament, and an orator
without a peer.  Disraeli, at first a supporter of the policy of
the great Liberator, had joined the ranks of his enemies, and
was unsparing in his denunciation of O'Connell and his party.
In his reply O'Connell, after charging his assailant with ingratitude
and treachery, concluded as follows:

"I cannot divest my mind of the belief that if your genealogy were
traced, it would be found that you are the lineal descendant and
true heir-at-law of the impenitent thief who atoned for his crimes
upon the cross."

The challenge from Disraeli, which immediately followed, was treated
by O'Connell with supreme contempt.

The duel between Hamilton and Burr is of perennial interest to the
American people.  Both were men of great distinction and
splendid talents.  Both had been soldiers during the Revolutionary
War, and Hamilton was the confidential friend and for a time
chief-of-staff of Washington.  Burr had been a Senator from New
York, and was at the time of the duel Vice-President of the United
States.  He was one of the recognized leaders of the dominant party,
and by many considered the probable successor of Jefferson in
the great office.  Whatever hopes he might have had for the Presidency
were destroyed by his alleged attempt to defeat Jefferson and secure
his own elevation by the House of Representatives in 1801.  His
hostility to Hamilton had its beginning in the opposition of the
latter to Burr's aspirations to the Presidency.  Differing widely,
as Hamilton did, with Jefferson upon important questions then
pending, he nevertheless preferred the latter to Burr, and his
influence eventually turned the scales--after a protracted struggle
--in favor of Jefferson.

The valuable service just mentioned was one of the many rendered
by Hamilton.  He was the earnest advocate of the adoption of the
Federal Constitution, and his papers during that pivotal struggle have
justly given him high place in the list of American statesmen.  He
was the first Secretary of the Treasury, and possibly no man
possessed in larger degree the confidence of Washington.

Aaron Burr was the grandson of the great New England minister,
Jonathan Edwards, whose only daughter, Edith, was the wife of
the Reverend Aaron Burr, an eminent Presbyterian clergyman and
President of Princeton College.  From all that is known of this
gentleman, there can be no doubt that his ability and piety were
unquestioned.  Edith, his wife, was a woman of rare gifts and one of
the loveliest of her sex.  The pathetic reference to her in the
funeral sermon over Hamilton will be remembered:  "If there be tears
in Heaven, a pious mother looks down upon this scene and weeps."

Hamilton and Burr were both citizens of New York, the latter, of
Albany, the former, of New York City.  At the time of the challenge
Hamilton held no public office, but was engaged in a lucrative
practice of the law.  Burr was near the expiration of his term
as Vice-President, and was a prospective candidate for Governor of
New York.  This candidacy was the immediate cause of the correspondence
which resulted in the fatal encounter.  Four letters passed between
Burr and Hamilton prior to the formal challenge.  The first was
from Burr, and bears date June 18, 1804.  In it attention is directed
to a published letter of Dr. Cooper containing the words, "General
Hamilton and Judge Kent have declared in substance that they
look upon Mr. Burr to be a dangerous man, and one who ought not to
be trusted with the reins of government.  And I could detail to you
a still more deplorable opinion which General Hamilton has expressed
of Mr. Burr."

It was to the last sentence that the attention of Hamilton was
especially directed by Mr. Van Ness, the bearer of the letter,
which closed with the demand upon the part of Burr of "a prompt
and unqualified acknowledgment or denial, of the use of any expression
which would warrant the assertion of Dr. Cooper."

In his reply the next day Hamilton said:

"I cannot reconcile it with propriety to make the acknowledgment
or denial you desire.  I will add that I deem it inadmissable on
principle to consent to be interrogated as to the justness of
the inferences which may be drawn from others, from whatever I may
have said of a political opponent in the course of fifteen
years' competition.  I stand ready to avow, or disavow promptly
and explicitly, any precise or definite opinion which I may be
charged with having declared of any gentleman.  More than this
cannot be fitly expected from me; and especially it cannot be
reasonably expected that I shall enter into an explanation upon
a basis so vague as that which you have adopted.  I trust on
more reflection, you will see the matter in the same light with
me.  If not, I can only regret the circumstance, and must abide
the consequences."

The immediate response of Burr to the above, after repeating his
former demand, contained the following:

"Political opposition can never absolve gentlemen from the necessity
of a rigid adherence to the laws of honor and the rules of decorum.
I neither claim such privilege, nor indulge it in others."

Hamilton's reply being unsatisfactory, the formal challenge of Burr
was soon thereafter handed to him by W. P. Van Ness.  The last
named was the second of Burr, and Nathaniel Pendleton was the friend
of Hamilton.

Some days elapsed after the formal acceptance of the challenge
before the fatal meeting.  That Hamilton was anxious to avoid
the conflict, clearly appears from a perusal of the many publications
that immediately followed.  A paper he prepared explanatory in
character, the second of Burr declined to receive, on the ground
that he considered the correspondence closed by the acceptance
of the challenge.

It touches our sympathies deeply even after the lapse of a century
to read the letter written by Hamilton to his wife to be delivered
in the event of his death, in which he states that he has endeavored
by all honorable means to avoid the duel which probably he would
not survive.  He begs her forgiveness for the pain his death would
cause her, and entreats her to bear her sorrows as one who has
placed a firm reliance on a kind Providence.

A few days before his death, he and Burr were guests at a dimmer
given by the Cincinnati Society, of which both were members.
Few persons were aware of what was pending, but it was observed
that Hamilton "entered with glee into all the gayety of a convivial
party, and even sang an old military song."  Burr, upon the contrary,
was "silent, gloomy, and remained apart."

In his will, written July 9, Hamilton expressed deep regret that
his death will prevent the full payment of his debts.  He expresses
the hope that his children will, in time, make up to his creditors
all that may be due them.  After tenderly committing to his children
the care of their mother, he says, "in all situations you are
charged to bear in mind, that she has been to you the most devoted
and best of mothers."

The last paper that came from his pen was evidently intended as
his vindication to posterity, his appeal to time.  In this he says:

"I was certainly desirous of avoiding this interview, for the most
cogent reasons.  My religious and moral principles are strongly
opposed to duelling, and it would give me pain to be obliged to
shed the blood of a fellow-creature in a private combat forbidden by
the laws.  My wife and children are extremely dear to me, and my
life is of the utmost importance to them.  I am conscious of no
ill-will to Colonel Burr distinct from political opposition, which
I trust has proceeded from pure and upright motives.  Lastly, I
shall hazard much and shall possibly gain nothing by the issue
of the interview.  But it was impossible for me to avoid it."

He candidly admits that his criticisms of Colonel Burr have been
severe.  He says:

"And on different occasions, I--in common with many others--have
made very unfavorable criticisms of the private character of
this gentleman.  It is not my design to fix any odium on the conduct
of Colonel Burr in this case.  He may have supposed himself under the
necessity of acting as he has done.  I hope the grounds of his
proceeding have been such as to satisfy his own conscience.  I
trust, at the same time, that the world will do me the justice
to believe that I have not censured him on light grounds, nor from
unworthy inducements."

How strangely in the light of history sounds the following:  "It
is my ardent wish that he, by his future conduct, may show himself
worthy of all confidence and esteem, and prove an ornament and
blessing to the country."

That some lingering apprehension existed in the mind of General
Hamilton that his criticisms of Colonel Burr might not have been
altogether generous, appears from the following:

"As well because it is possible that I may have injured Colonel
Burr, however convinced myself that my opinions and declarations
have been well-founded, as from my general principles and temper
in relation to similar affairs, I have resolved, if our interview is
conducted in the usual manner, and it please God to give me the
opportunity, to reserve and throw away my first fire; and I have
thought even of reserving my second fire, and thus giving to Colonel
Burr a double opportunity to pause and to reflect."

And then, before laying down his pen for the last time, he struck the
keynote to the conduct of many brave men who, like himself,
reluctantly accepted a call to "the field of honor."  These are
his closing words:

"To those who with me, abhorring the practice of duelling, may
think that I ought under no account to have added to the number of
bad examples, I answer, that my relative situation as well in public
as in private enforcing all the considerations which constitute
what men of the world denominate honor imposed on me a peculiar
necessity not to decline the call.  The ability to be in future
useful, whether in arresting mischief or effecting good in this
crisis of our public affairs which seemed likely to happen,
would probably be inseparable from a conformity with public prejudice
in this particular."

At seven o'clock in the morning of July 11, 1804, at Weehawken,
New Jersey, the fatal meeting took place.  After the usual
formal salutation, the parties were placed in position by their
seconds, ten paces apart, the pistols placed in their hands, and
the word being given both fired.  General Hamilton instantly fell.
The statement subsequently given out by the seconds is as follows:

"Colonel Burr then advanced toward General Hamilton with a manner and
gesture that appeared to be expressive of regret, but without
speaking turned about and withdrew, being urged from the field
by his friends.  No further communication took place between the
principals, and the barge that carried Colonel Burr immediately
returned to the city.  We conceive it proper to add that the conduct
of the parties in this interview was perfectly proper as suited
the occasion."

The surgeon in attendance states that after Hamilton was borne
to the barge he observed, "Pendleton knows that I did not intend
to fire at him."  As they approached the shore he said, "Let
Mrs. Hamilton be immediately sent for; let the event be gradually broken
to her, but give her hopes."  His physician adds:

"During the night his mind retained its usual strength and composure.
The great source of his anxiety seemed to be in his sympathy with his
half-distracted wife and children.  'My beloved wife and children'
was his often used expression, but his fortitude triumphed over
his situation, dreadful as it was.  Once, indeed, at the sight
of his children, seven in number, brought to his bedside together,
his utterance forsook him.  To his wife he said in a firm voice
but with a pathetic and impressive manner, 'Remember, my Eliza,
that you are a Christian.'  His words and the tone in which they
were uttered, will never be effaced from my memory."

After indescribable agony, death came at two o'clock of the day
succeeding the duel.  Thus, at the age of forty-seven, perished
Alexander Hamilton, a great man in any country or time.  Cities
and counties bear his name in almost every American State.  The
story of his wondrous life and tragic death will never lose its
pathetic interest.  His unswerving devotion to the country of
his adoption, his untiring efforts in the establishment of the
national Government, and his friendship for Washington, which knew
no abatement, have given Hamilton honored and enduring place in
American history.

As to Burr, the proverb found instant verification that "in duels the
victor is always the victim."  Had he, instead of Hamilton, fallen
on that ill-fated July morning, how changed their possible places in
history.  A halo has gathered about the name of Hamilton.  Monuments
have been erected to his memory, his statue has been given high
place in the Capitol.  The hour of his fall was that of his

The self-same hour witnessed the ruin of his antagonist.  From the
fatal field, unharmed in body, he turned away, henceforth to the
followed by the execrations of his countrymen.  Past services were
forgotten, brilliant talents availed nothing.  His desperate attempt
to found a rival government by the partial dismemberment of the
one he had helped to establish was thwarted, and after years of
poverty and misfortune abroad, he returned to die in neglect and
obscurity in his own country.  As was truly said:  "He was the last
of his race; there was no kindred hand to smooth his couch, or wipe
the death-damp from his brow.  No banners drooped over his bier;
no melancholy music floated upon the reluctant air."

The Hon. Hamilton Spencer, one of the ablest of lawyers, gave me
an interesting account of an interview he had with Colonel Burr in
Albany not long before his death.  Notwithstanding his advanced
age, broken health, and ruined fortunes, he deeply impressed Mr.
Spencer as a gentleman of most courteous manners, dignified bearing,
and commanding presence such as he had rarely seen.

The one object of his love was his daughter, the beautiful Theodosia.
Her devotion to her father increased with his accumulating misfortunes.
The ship in which she sailed from her home in Charleston, South
Carolina, to meet him in New York, never reached its destination.
In all history, there are few pictures more pathetic than that
of the gray-haired, friendless man, with faded cloak drawn closely
about him, day after day wandering alone by the seaside, anxiously
awaiting the coming of the one being who loved him, the idolized
daughter whose requiem was even then being chanted by the waves.

One of the men I occasionally met in Washington was Joseph C.
McKibben, a former representative in Congress from the Pacific
coast.  He was thoroughly familiar with the history of California from
its cession to the United States at the close of the Mexican War.
He had been an active participant in many of the stirring events
occurring soon after the admission of the State into the Union.

  "Men, except in bad novels, are not all good, or all evil."

Colonel McKibben was the second of David C. Broderick in his
duel with Judge Terry.  At the time of the duel, Broderick was a
Senator of the United States, and Terry the Chief Justice of
California.  The challenge given by Terry was promptly accepted.
As will be remembered, in the encounter which immediately followed,
Terry escaped unhurt and Broderick was killed.

I recall vividly the description given me of the meeting between
these men in that early Spring morning in 1859.  Both possessed
unquestioned courage.  Their demeanor upon the field, as in deadly
attitude they confronted each other a few paces apart, was that of
absolute fearlessness.  "Each had set his life upon a cast, and
was ready to stand the hazard of the die."

Rarely have truer words been uttered than those of the gifted Baker
over the dead body of Broderick:

"The code of honor is a delusion and a snare; it palters with
the hope of true courage, and binds it at the feet of crafty and
cruel skill.  It surrounds its victim with the pomp and grace of
the procession, but leaves him bleeding on the altar.  It
substitutes cold and deliberate preparedness for courage and manly
impulse, and arms the one to disarm the other.  It makes the mere
trick of the weapon superior to the noblest cause and the truest
courage.  Its pretence of equality is a lie; it is equal in all the
form, it is unjust in all the substance.  The habitude of arms,
the early training, the frontier life, the border war, the sectional
custom, the life of leisure, all these are advantages which no
negotiations can neutralize, and which no courage can overcome.
Code of honor!  It is a prostitution of the name, is an evasion of
the substance, and is a shield blazoned with the name of chivalry to
cover the malignity of murder."

The tragic ending of the eventful career of Judge Terry, which
occurred within the last decade, will be readily recalled.
Immediately following his assault upon Justice Field at the railway
station in Lathrop, California, he was slain by a deputy United
States marshal.  The wife of Terry was at his side, and the scene that
followed beggars description.

The name of Terry at once recalls the "Vigilance Committee" of
early San Francisco days.  The committee was composed largely of
leading men of the "law-and-order" element of the city.  Robberies
and murders were of nightly occurrence, and gamblers and criminals
in many instances were the incumbents of the public offices.
The organization mentioned became an imperative necessity for
the protection of life and property.  The work of the committee
constitutes one of the bloodiest chapters of early Californian

Nearly a third of a century ago, Colonel Thornton, a prominent
lawyer of San Francisco, related to me an incident which he had
witnessed during the time the famous Vigilance Committee was in
complete control.  A young lawyer, recently located in San Francisco,
was arrested for stabbing a well-known citizen who was at the time
one of the most active members of the Vigilance Committee.  The
name of the lawyer was David S. Terry, at a later day Chief Justice
of the State.  The dread tribunal was presided over by one of
the most courageous and best known citizens of the Pacific coast.
At a later day, his name was presented by his State to the National
Convention of his party for nomination for the Vice-Presidency.

When brought before the Vigilance Committee, the demeanor of Terry
was that of absolute fearlessness.  Standing erect and perfectly
self-possessed, he listened to the ominous words of the president:
"Mr. Terry, you are charged with attempted murder; what have you
to say?"  Advancing a step nearer the committee "organized to
convict," and in a tone that at once challenged the respect of all,
Terry replied, "If your Honor please, I recognize the jurisdiction
of this court, and am ready for trial."  He then clearly established
the fact that his assault was in self-defence, and after a masterly
speech, delivered with as much self-possession as if a life other than
his own trembled in the balance, was duly acquitted.

Another California with whom I was personally acquainted, was
William M. Gwin.  He had long passed the allotted three score
and ten when I first met him at the home of the late Senator Sharon.
Few men have known so eventful a career.  He had been the
private secretary of Andrew Jackson.  He knew well the public men of
that day, and related many interesting incidents of the stormy
period of the latter years of Jackson's Presidency.  In his
early manhood Gwin was a member of Congress from Alabama.  At the
close of the Mexican War he removed to California, and upon the
admission of that State he and John C. Fremont were chosen its
first Senators in Congress.

During a ride with him, he pointed out to me the spot where he had
fought a duel in early California days.  He was then a Senator,
and his antagonist the Hon. J. W. McCorkle, a member of Congress.
A card signed by their respective seconds appeared the day following,
to the effect that after the exchange of three ineffectual shots
between the Hon. William M. Gwin and the Hon. J. W. McCorkle, the
friends of the respective parties, having discovered that _their
principals were fighting under a misapprehension of facts,_ mutually
explained to their respective principals how the misapprehension
had arisen.  As a result, Senator Gwin promptly denied the cause
of provocation and Mr. McCorkle withdrew his offensive language
uttered at the race-course, and expressed regret at having used it.

To a layman in these "piping times of peace" it would appear the
more reasonable course to have avoided "a misapprehension of facts"
before even three ineffectual shots.

At the beginning of the great civil conflict, the fortunes of
Senator Gwin were cast with the South, and at its close he became a
citizen of Mexico.  Maximilian was then Emperor, and one of his
last official acts was the creation of a Mexican Duke out of the
sometime American Senator.  The glittering empire set up by Napoleon
the Third and upheld for a time by French bayonets, was even then,
however, tottering to its fall.

When receiving the Ducal coronet from the Imperial hand the
self-expatriated American statesman might well have inquired,

  "But shall we wear these glories for a day,
  Or shall they last, and we rejoice in them?"

A few months later, at the behest of our Government, the French
arms were withdrawn, the bubble of Mexican Empire vanished, and
the ill-fated Maximilian had bravely met his tragic end.  Thenceforth,
a resident but no longer a citizen of the land that had given
him birth, William M. Gwin, to the end of his life, bore the
high sounding but empty title of "Duke of Sonora."

Frequent as have been the instances in our own country where death
has resulted from duelling, it is believed that in but one has the
survivor incurred the extreme penalty of the law.  That one case
occurred in 1820 in Illinois.  What was intended merely as a "mock
duel" by their respective friends, was fought with rifles by William
Bennett and Alphonso Stewart in Belleville.  It was privately agreed
by the seconds of each that the rifles should be loaded with blank
cartridges.  This arrangement was faithfully carried out so far as
the seconds were concerned; but Bennett, the challenging party,
managed to get a bullet into his own gun.  The result was the
immediate death of Stewart, and the flight of his antagonist.  Upon
his return to Belleville a year or two later, Bennett was immediately
arrested, placed upon trial, convicted, and executed.

In more than one instance, at a later day, while well-known
Illinoisans have been parties to actual or prospective duels, no
instance has occurred of a hostile meeting of that character within
the limits of the State.  A late auditor of public account, but
recently deceased, killed his antagonist in a duel with rifles
nearly half a century ago in California.

William I. Ferguson, one of the most brilliant orators Illinois
has known, in early professional life the associate of men who have
since achieved national distinction, fell in a duel while a member
of the State Senate in California.

During the sitting of the Illinois Constitutional Convention of
1847, two of its prominent members, Campbell and Pratt, delegates from
the northern tier of counties, became involved in a bitter personal
controversy which resulted in a challenge by Pratt to mortal combat.
The challenge was accepted and the principals with their seconds repaired
to the famous "Bloody Island" in the Mississippi, when by the
interposition of friends a peaceable settlement was effected.  The sequel
to this happily averted duel was the incorporation in the Constitution,
then in process of formulation, of a provision prohibiting duelling in
the State, and attaching severe penalties to sending or accepting
a challenge.

The earliest hostile meeting of Illinoisans was upon the island
last mentioned before State organization had been effected.  The
principals were young men of well-known courage and ability--one
of whom, Shadrack Bond, upon the admission of Illinois was elected
its Governor.  His adversary, John Rice Jones, was the first lawyer
to locate in the Illinois country, and was the brother of the second
of the unfortunate Cilley in the tragic encounter already related.
The late Governor Bissell of Illinois was once challenged by
Jefferson Davis.  Both were at the time members of Congress, and
the _casus belli_ was language reflecting upon the conduct of some
of the participants in the then recently fought battle of Buena
Vista.  After the acceptance of the challenge, mutual friends of
Davis and Bissell effected a reconciliation, just before the hour set
for the hostile meeting.

So far as Illinois combatants are concerned, the historic island
mentioned above has little claim to its bloody designation, inasmuch
as the "affairs" mentioned, and one much more famous, yet to be
noted, were all honorably adjusted without physical harm to any of
the participants.

The "affair of honor," the mention of which will close this chapter,
owes its chief importance to the prominence attained at a later
day by its principals.  The challenger, James Shields, was at that
time, 1842, a State officer of Illinois, and later a general in
two wars and a Senator from three States.  The name of his adversary
has since "been given to the ages."  Mr. Lincoln was, at the time he
accepted Mr. Shields's challenge, a young lawyer, unmarried, residing
at the State capital.  He was the recognized leader of the Whig
party, and an active participant in the fierce political conflicts
of the day.  Some criticism in which he had indulged, touching the
administration of the office of which Shields was the incumbent,
was the immediate cause of the challenge.

That Mr. Lincoln was upon principle opposed to duelling would be
readily inferred from his characteristic kindness.  That "we are
time's subjects," however, and that the public opinion of sixty-odd
years ago is not that of to-day will readily appear from the
published statement of his friend Dr. Merryman:

"I told Mr. Lincoln what was brewing, and asked him what course he
proposed to himself.  He said that he was wholly opposed to duelling
and would do anything to avoid it that might not degrade him in
the estimation of himself and friends; but if such a degradation, or
a fight, were the only alternatives, he would fight."

It is stated by one of the biographers of Mr. Lincoln that he
was ever after averse to any allusion to the Shields affair.  From
the terms of his acceptance, it is evident that he intended neither
to injure his adversary seriously nor to receive injury at his
hands.  In his lengthy letter of instruction to his second, he
closed by saying:

"If nothing like this is done, the preliminaries of the fight are to
be, first, weapons:  cavalry broadswords of the largest size,
precisely equal in all respects.  Second, position:  a plank ten
feet long and from nine to twelve inches broad, to be firmly fixed
on edge on the ground as the line between us which neither is to
pass his foot over upon forfeit of his life.  Next, a line drawn
on the ground on either side of said plank and parallel with it,
each at the distance of the whole length of the sword, and three
feet additional from the plank; the passing of his own line by
either party during the fight shall be deemed a surrender of the
contest.  Third, time:  on Thursday evening at five o'clock within
three miles of Alton on the opposite side of the river, the particular
spot to be agreed on by you.  Any preliminary details coming within
the above rules you are at liberty to make at your discretion, but
you are in no case to swerve from these rules or to pass beyond
their limits."

The keen sense of the humorous, with which Mr. Lincoln was so
abundantly gifted, seems not to have wholly deserted him even in
the serious moments when penning an acceptance to mortal combat.
The terms of meeting indicated--which he as the challenged party
had the right to dictate--lend color to the opinion that he regarded
the affair in the light of a mere farce.  His superior height
and length of arm remembered, and the position of the less favored
Shields, with broadsword in hand, at the opposite side of the board,
and not permitted "upon forfeit of his life" to advance an inch
--the picture is indeed a ludicrous one.

Out of the lengthy statements of the respective seconds--the
publication of which came near involving themselves in personal
altercation--it appears that all parties actually reached the
appointed rendezvous on time.

But it was not written in the book of fate that this duel was to
take place.  Something of mightier moment was awaiting one of
the actors in this drama.  Two level-headed men, R. W. English and
John J. Hardin, the friends respectively of Shields and Lincoln,
crossing the Mississippi in a canoe close in the wake of the
belligerents, reached the field just before the appointed hour.
These gentlemen, acting in concert with the seconds, Whiteside and
Merryman, soon effected a reconciliation deemed honorable to all, and
the Shields-Lincoln duel passed to the domain of history.  That
the reconciliation thus brought about was sincere was evidenced by
the fact that one of the earliest acts of President Lincoln was
the appointment of General Shields to an important military command.

How strangely "the whirligig of time brings in his revenges!"  A
few paces apart in the old Hall at the Capitol at Washington, stand
two statues, the contribution of Illinois for enduring place in
the "Temple of the Immortals."  One is the statue of Lincoln,
the other that of Shields.



Although a third of a century has passed since I met Professor
Joseph Henry, I distinctly recall his kindly greeting and the
courteous manner in which he gave me the information I requested
for the use of one of the Committees of the House.

The frosts of many winters were then on his brow, and he was near the
close of an honorable career, one of measureless benefit to mankind.
He was the first secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, and the
originator of the plan by which was carried into practical effect the
splendid bequest for "the increase and diffusion of knowledge among

As Vice-President of the United States, a regent _ex-officio_ of
the Smithsonian Institution, I had rare opportunity to learn much of
its history and something of its marvellous accomplishment.  As is
well known, it bears the name of James Smithson.  He was an
Englishman, related to the historic family of Percy, and a
lineal descendent of Henry the Seventh, his maternal ancestor being
the ill-fated Lady Jane Grey, cousin to Queen Elizabeth.

Mr. Langley, the late secretary of the institution, said:

"Smithson always seems to have regarded the circumstances of his
birth as doing him a peculiar injustice, and it was apparently this
sense that he had been deprived of honors properly his which made him
look for other sources of fame than those which birth had denied
him, and constituted the motive of the most important action of
his life, the creation of the Smithsonian Institution."

The deep resentment of Smithson against the great families who had
virtually disowned him, finds vent in a letter yet extant, of which
the following is a part:  "The best blood of England flows in my
veins; on my father's side I am a Northumberland, on my mother's
I am related to kings; but this avails me not.  My name shall live
in the memory of man when the titles of the Northumberlands and
the Percys are extinct and forgotten."

How truly his indignant forecast was prophetic is now a matter
of history.  Few men know much about the once proud families of
Northumberland or Percy, but the name of the youth they scornfully
disowned lives in the institution he founded, the greatest
instrumentality yet devised for "the increase and diffusion of
knowledge among men."

Smithson was born in 1765, and received the degree of Master of
Arts from Pembroke College at the age of twenty-one.  A year later
he was admitted a Fellow of the Royal Society, upon the recommendation
of his instructors, as being "a gentleman well versed in the various
branches of Natural Philosophy, and particularly in Chemistry and
Mineralogy."  As a student, he was devoted to the study of the
sciences, especially chemistry, and his entire life, in fact,
was given to scientific research.  Twenty-seven papers from his
pen were published in "The Philosophical Transactions of the Royal
Society" and in "Thompson's Annals of Philosophy," near the close of
the eighteenth and the beginning of the nineteenth century, and
"all give evidence that he was an assiduous and faithful

In this connection, the statement of Professor Clarke, Chief Chemist
of the United States Geographical Survey, is in point:

"The most notable feature of Smithson's writings from the standpoint
of the analytical chemist, is the success obtained with the most
primitive and unsatisfactory appliances.  In Smithson's day, chemical
apparatus was undeveloped, and instruments were improvised from
such materials as lay readiest to hand.  With such instruments,
and with crude reagents, Smithson obtained analytical results of
the most creditable character, and enlarged our knowledge of
many mineral species.  In his time, the native carbonate and the
silicate of zinc were confounded as one species under the name
calamine; but his researches distinguished between the two minerals,
which are now known as Smithsonite and Calamine, respectively.

"To theory Smithson contributed little, if anything; but from a
theoretical point of view, the tone of his writings is singularly
modern.  His work was mostly done before Dalton had announced
the atomic theory; and yet Smithson saw clearly that a law of
definite proportions must exist, although he did not attempt to
account for it.  His ability as a reasoner is best shown in his
paper on the Kirkdale Bone Cave, which Penn had sought to interpret
by reference to the Noachian Deluge.  A clearer and more
complete demolition of Penn's views could hardly be written to-day.
Smithson was gentle with his adversary, but none the less thorough,
for all his moderation.  He is not to be classed among the leaders
of scientific thought; but his ability and the usefulness of his
contributions to knowledge, cannot be doubted."

The life of Smithson was uncheered by domestic affection; he was
of singularly retiring disposition, had no intimacies, spent the
closing years of his life in Paris, and was long the uncomplaining
victim of a painful malady.  Professor Langley said of him:

"One gathers from his letters, from the uniform consideration with
which he speaks of others, from kind traits which he showed, and
from the general tenor of what is not here particularly cited, the
remembrance of an innately gentle nature, but also of a man who is
gradually renouncing not without bitterness the youthful hope of
fame, and as health and hope diminished together, is finally living
for the day, rather than for any future."

He died in Genoa, Italy, June 27, 1829, and was buried in the little
English cemetery on the heights of San Benigno.  The Institution
he founded has placed a tablet over his tomb and surrounded it with
evidences of continued and thoughtful care.

His will--possibly of deeper concern to mankind than any yet written
--bears date October 23, 1826.  In its opening clause he designates
himself:  "Son of Hugh, First Duke of Northumberland, and Elizabeth,
heiress of the Hungerfords of Studley, and niece to Charles the
proud Duke of Somerset."  Herein clearly appears his undying
resentment toward those who had denied him the position in life to
which he considered himself justly entitled.

The only persons designated in his will as legatees are a faithful
servant, for whom abundant provision was made, and Henry James
Hungerford, nephew of the testator.  To the latter was devised the
entire estate except the legacy to the servant mentioned.  The
clause of the will which has given the name of Smithson to the ages
seems to have been almost casually inserted; it appears between
the provision for his servant and the one for an investment of the

The clause in his will which was to cause his name "to live in the
memory of man when the titles of the Northumberlands and the Percys
are extinct and forgotten," was,--

"In the case of the death of my said nephew without leaving a child
or children, or the death of the child or children he may have had
under the age of twenty-one years, or intestate, I then bequeath
the whole of my property subject to the annuity of one hundred
pounds to John Fitall (for the security and payment of which I have
made provision) to the United States of America, to found at
Washington, under the name of the Smithsonian Institution, an
establishment for the increase and diffusion of knowledge among

Why he selected the United States as his residuary legatee has long
been, and will continue to be, the subject of curious inquiry.  He
had never been in America, had no correspondent here, and nowhere in
his writings has there been found an allusion to our country.
So far as we know, he could have had no possible prejudice in favor
of our system of representative government.

It is a singular fact, however, in this connection, that the pivotal
clause in his will bears striking resemblance to the admonition,
"Promote as an object of primary importance institutions for the
general diffusion of knowledge," contained in the farewell address
of President Washington.

The contingency provided for happened; the death of the nephew
Hungerford unmarried and without heirs occurred six years after
that of the testator.  The first announcement to the people of the
United States of the facts stated was contained in a special message
from President Jackson to Congress, December 17, 1835.  Accompanying
the message was a letter with a detailed statement, and copy of
the will, from our Legation in London.  In closing his brief message
of transmission, President Jackson says:  "The Executive having no
authority to take any steps for accepting the trust and obtaining the
funds, the papers are communicated with a view to such measures as
Congress may deem necessary."

On the first day of July, 1836, a bill authorizing the President
to assert and prosecute the claim of the United States to the
Smithson legacy became a law.  This, however, was after much
opposition in Congress; a member of the House indignantly declaring
that our Government should receive nothing by way of gift from
England, and proposing that the bequest should be denied.  The
prophetic words of the venerable John Quincy Adams--then a member of
the House after his retirement from the Presidency--in advocating
the passage of the bill are worthy of remembrance:

"Of all the foundations of establishments for pious or charitable uses
which ever signalized the spirit of the age, or the comprehensive
beneficence of the founders, none can be named more deserving the
approbation of mankind than this.  Should it be faithfully carried
into effect with an earnestness and sagacity of application and a
steady perseverance of purpose proportioned to the means furnished
by the will of the founder, and to the greatness and simplicity of
his design as by himself declared,--'the increase and diffusion of
knowledge among men,'--it is no extravagance of anticipation to declare
that his name will hereafter be enrolled among the benefactors of mankind."

In the execution of this law, the President immediately upon its
enactment appointed Richard Rush, a distinguished lawyer of
Philadelphia, to proceed to London, and take the necessary steps
to obtain the legacy.  To the accomplishment of this purpose a suit
was soon thereafter instituted by Mr. Rush.  The hopelessness of
its early termination in an English Chancery Court of that day will
at once occur to the readers of Dickens's famous "Jarndyce against
Jarndyce."  It was truly said, that a chancery suit was a thing
which might begin with a man's life, and its termination be his

A wiser selection than Mr. Rush could not have been made.  He
entered upon the work to which he had been appointed, with great
determination.  In a letter to our Secretary of State just after
he had instituted suit, he says:

"A suit of higher interest and dignity, has rarely perhaps been
before the tribunals of a nation.  If the trust created by the
testator's will be successfully carried into effect by the enlightened
legislation of Congress, benefits may flow to the United States,
and to the human family, not easy to be estimated, because operating
silently and gradually throughout time, yet not operating the less
effectually.  Not to speak of the inappreciable value of letters
to individual and social man, the monuments which they raise to
a nation's glory often last when others perish, and seem especially
appropriate to the glory of a Republic whose foundations are laid in
the assumed intelligence of its citizens, and can only be strengthened
and perpetuated as that improve."

The successful termination of the suit came, however, sooner
than could have been expected; and in May, 1838, the amount of the
legacy, exceeding the substantial sum of five hundred thousand
dollars, was received and invested as required by law.

The facts stated were communicated by special message from President
Van Buren to Congress, in December, 1838.  Attention was then called
to the fact that he had applied to persons versed in science,
for their views as to the mode of disposing of the fund which would
be calculated best to meet the intent of the testator, and prove
most beneficial to mankind.

During the eight years intervening between this message and the
passage of the bill for the incorporation of the Smithsonian
Institution, much discussion was had in and out of Congress, as to
the best method of making effective the intention of the testator.

In the light of events, some of the many plans suggested are even now
of curious interest.  The establishment of a magnificent national library
at the Capital; the founding of a great university; of a normal
school; a post graduate school; and astronomical observatory "equal
to any in the world," are a few of the plans from time to time
proposed and earnestly advocated.

The act of incorporation in 1846, the appointment of a Board of
Regents, and the selection of a Secretary, mark the beginning of
the Smithsonian Institution.  In the selection of a Secretary, the
chief officer of the institution, the regents builded better
than they knew.  The choice fell upon Professor Joseph Henry of
Princeton, then peerless among men of science in America.  The
appointment was accepted, and the essential features of the plan
of organization he proposed were adopted in December, 1847.
This plan recognized as

"Fundamental that the terms 'increase' and 'diffusion' should
receive literal interpretation in accordance with the evident
intention of the testator; that such terms being logically distinct,
the two purposes mentioned in the bequest were to be kept in view in
the organization of the institution; that the increase of knowledge
should be effected by the encouragement of original researches
of the highest character; and its diffusion by the publication
of the results of original research, by means of the publication
of a series of volumes of original memoirs; that the object of the
institution should not be restricted in favor of any particular
kind of knowledge; if to any, only to the higher and more abstract,
to the discovery of new principles rather than that of isolated
facts; that the institution should in no sense be national; that
the bequest was intended for the benefit of mankind in general,
and not for any single nation.

"The accumulation and care of collections of objects of nature and
art, the development of a library, the providing of courses of
lectures, and the organization of a system of meteorological
observation, were to be only incidental to the fundamental design of
increasing and diffusing knowledge among men."

In its inception, and in its widening influence during the passing
years, those entrusted with the actual management of this institution
have conscientiously kept in view the clearly expressed intention of
its founder.  Following the distinctive but parallel paths, "increase"
and "diffusion," the Smithsonian Institution, yet in its infancy, has
added largely to the sum of useful knowledge.  Its accredited
representatives are out upon every pathway of intelligent research
and discovery.  Under the wise operation of this marvellous
instrumentality, long-concealed secrets of nature have been
discovered, and it can hardly be doubted that all that is given to
man to know will yet be revealed, and it will be permitted him

  "To read what is still unread,
  In the manuscripts of God."

By indefatigable investigation, and by world-wide publication of
the results, mankind has indeed become, as was intended, the
beneficiary of the princely bequest.

More fitting words could not be selected with which to close
this sketch than those of the gifted and lamented Langley, whose
best years were given to scientific research, and whose name is
inseparably associated with the Smithsonian Institution:

"What has been done in these two paths the reader may partly gather
from this volume--in the former from the various articles by
contemporary men of science, describing its activities in research
and original contributions to the increase of human knowledge;
in the latter, in numerous way--among others from the description of
the work of one of its bureaux, that of the International Exchanges,
where it may be more immediately seen how universal is the scope
of the action of the Institution, which, in accordance with its
motto 'PER ORBEM,' is not limited to the country of its adoption, but
belongs to the world, there being outside of the United States more
than twelve thousand correspondents scattered through every portion
of the globe; indeed there is hardly a language, or a people, where
the results of Smithson's benefaction are not known, and associated
with his name.

"If we were permitted to think of him as conscious of what has
been, is being, and is still to be done, in pursuance of his wish,
we might believe that he would feel that his hope at a time when
life must have seemed so hopeless, was finding full fruition;
for events are justifying what may have seemed, at the time, but
a rhetorical expression, in the language of a former President of
the United States, who has said:  'Renowned as is the name of Percy
in the historical annals of England, let the trust of James Smithson
to the United States of America be faithfully executed, let the
result accomplish his object, the increase and diffusion of knowledge
among men, and a wreath more unfading shall entwine itself in
the lapse of future ages around the name of Smithson than the united
hands of history and poetry have braided around the name of
Percy through the long ages past.'"



This world of ours will be much older before the like of John
Reynolds, the fourth Governor of Illinois, again appears upon
its stage.  The title which he generously gave himself in early
manhood, upon his return after a brief experience as a trooper
in pursuit of a marauding band of Winnebagoes, stood him well in
hand in all his future contests for office.  "The Old Ranger" was a
_sobriquet_ to conjure with, and turned the scales in his favor in
many a doubtful contest.

The subject of this sketch was a born politician if ever one
trod this green earth.  He was a perennial candidate for office,
and it was said he never took a drink of water without serious
meditation as to how it might possibly affect his political prospects.
The late Uriah Heep might easily have gotten a few points in
"'umbleness," if he had accompanied the Old Ranger in one or two
of his political campaigns.

While Illinois was yet a Territory, his father had emigrated from the
mountains of Tennessee and located near the historic village of
Kaskaskia.  This was at the time the capital of the Territory.
The village mentioned was then the most, and in fact, the only,
important place in the vast area constituting the present State of
Illinois.  There were less than five thousand persons of all
nationalities and conditions in the Territory, and they mainly
in and about Kaskaskia, and southward to the Ohio.  Beck's Gazetteer
published in 1823--five years after the admission of the State into
the Union--contains the following:  "Chicago, a village of Pike
County, situated on Lake Michigan at the mouth of the Chicago Creek.
It contains twelve or fifteen houses, and about sixty or seventy

The acquaintance of John Reynolds with what was then known as "the
Illinois Country" began in 1800, and his thorough knowledge of the
people and their ways gave him rare opportunities for acquiring
great personal popularity.  Fairly well educated for the times,
gifted with an abundance of shrewdness, and withal an excellent
judge of human nature, he soon became a man of mark in the new
country.  He was at all times and under all circumstances the
self-constituted "friend of the people."  He affected to be one of
the humblest of the sons of men; and his dress, language, and
deportment were always in strict keeping with that assumption.  For
the pride of ancestry he had a supreme contempt.  In his "My Own
Times," published a few years before his death, he said:  "I regard
the whole subject of ancestry and descent as utterly frivolous and
unworthy of a moment's serious attention."

This recalls what Judge Baldwin said of Cave Burton:

"He was not clearly satisfied that Esau made as foolish a bargain with
his brother Jacob as some think.  If the birth-right was _a mere
matter of family pride,_ and the pottage of agreeable taste, Cave was
not quite sure that Esau had not gotten the advantage in his famed
bargain with the Father of Israel."

Humility was Reynolds's highest card, and when out among the people
he was always figuratively clothed in sackcloth and ashes.  A
few extracts from his book may be of interest:

"I was a singular spectacle when in 1809 I started to Tennessee to
college.  I looked like a trapper going to the Rocky Mountains.
I wore a cream-colored hat made of the fur of the prairie wolf,
which gave me a grotesque appearance.  I was well acquainted with the
mysteries of horse and foot races, shooting matches, and other wild
sports of the backwoods, but had not studied the polish of the
ball-room and was sorely beset with diffidence, awkwardness, and

Later, and when out in pursuit of the Indians, he said:  "But
diffidence never permitted me to approach an officer's tent, or
solicit any one for office."

None the less, the office of Orderly Sergeant being thrust upon
him, he managed in his humble way to get through with it
passably well.

When the State Government was organized in 1818, while shrinking
from even the gaze of men, and spurning from the depths of his soul
the arts of politicians, he managed in some way to be designated
one of the judges of the Supreme Court of the new State.  His
admiration for the dispensing hand appears as follows:  "Wisdom
and integrity, with other noble qualities, gave Governor Bond a
high standing with his contemporaries.  Wisdom and integrity shed a
beacon light around his path through life, showing him to be one
of the noblest works of God."

Four years prior to this appointment, he had been admitted to
the bar, after "undergoing with much diffidence" his examination.
This accomplished, he adds:  "In the Winter of 1814, I established
a very humble and obscure law-office in the French village of
Cahokia, the county seat of St. Clair County."  The bearing of the
one whose meat was locusts and wild honey, and whose loins were
girt about with a leathern girdle, was arrogance itself, when
compared with the deportment of the later John in the wilderness
at the period whereof we write.

That he was orthodox upon what pertained to medical practice will now
appear:  "It was the universal practice to give the patient of the
bilious disease, first, tartar emetic; next day, calomel and jalap;
and the third day, Peruvian bark.  This was generally sufficient."
The latter statement will hardly be questioned.

How his first visitation of the tender passion was mingled with
a relish of philosophy is recorded for the benefit of posterity:

"During all my previous life until within a short time before I
married, I had not the least intention of that state of existence,
and I expressed myself often to my friends to the same effect; but
on the subject of matrimony, a passion influences the parties which
generally succeeds.  Judgment and prudence should be mixed in
equal parts with love and affection in the transaction, to secure a
lasting and happy union."

With all his diffidence, however, the Old Ranger happened to turn up
at the seat of Government in time "to be persuaded by my friends
to be a candidate for a Judgeship.  It broke in on me like a clap of
thunder."  The mite of philosophy with which he excused himself
for giving way to the urgent demand of his friends is as follows:
"Human nature is easier to persuade to mount upwards than to remain
on the common level."

His mind, as will appear, was essentially of the strictly practical
cast.  He no doubt believed with Macaulay that "one acre in Middlesex
is worth a principality in Utopia."

That the Republican simplicity of the new Judge followed him from his
"very humble and obscure law-office" to the Bench, will now appear:

"The very first court I held was in Washington County, and it was to
me a strange and novel business.  I was amongst old comrades
with whom I had been raised, ranged in the war with them, and lived
with them in great intimacy and equality, so that it was difficult
to assume a different relationship than I had previously occupied with
them.  Moreover I detested a mock dignity.  Both the sheriff and
clerk were rangers in the same company with myself, and it seemed we
were still ranging on equal terms in pursuit of the Indians.
The sheriff was of the same opinion and very familiar.  He opened court
sitting astride on a bench in the Court-house, and without rising,
proclaimed:  'The court is now open, and our John is on the bench.'"

It may here be mentioned that the first case of importance that
came before Judge Reynolds, was the trial of one William Bennett
for murder.  He had killed his antagonist in a duel in St. Clair
County, for which he suffered the death penalty.  This is the only
duel ever fought in Illinois.  No doubt the prompt execution of
Bennett did much to discourage duelling in the State.

In reply to the charge that he had acted with unbecoming levity
upon the trial of Bennett, the Judge said, "No human being of my
humble capacity could have acted with more painful feelings and
sympathy than did I on this occasion."  Having thus vindicated
himself from the serious charge mentioned, he adds:

"I am opposed to capital punishment in any case where the convict can
be kept in solitary confinement without pardoning his life; it was
extremely painful and awful to me to be the instrument in the hands
of the law to pronounce sentence of death upon my fellow-man,
extinguishing him forever from the face of the earth, and depriving
him of life, which I think belongs to God and not to man."

He consoles himself, however, as he closes his narrative of this
sad affair, that "it never did assume the character of a regular
and honorable duel."  It is very satisfactory also, even at this
distant date, to be assured by the Judge that "the prisoner embraced
religion, was baptized, and died happy, before spectators to the
number of two thousand or more."

Governor Ford, in his history of Illinois, relates the following
incident as characteristic of Judge Reynolds.  The latter was
holding court in Washington County when one Green was found guilty
upon an indictment for murder.  The court was near the hour of
adjournment for the term, when the prosecuting attorney suggested to
the court that the prisoner Green be brought in in order that
sentence be passed upon him.  "Certainly, certainly," said the
Judge, and the prisoner was at once brought in from the jail
near by.

"Mr. Green," said the Judge in a familiar tone, "the jury in
your case have found you guilty.  I want you to understand, Mr.
Green, and all your friends down on Indian Creek to know, that
it is not I who condemns you, but the jury and the law.  The law
allows you time for preparation, Mr. Green; and so the court wants
to know what time it would suit you to be hung?"  The prisoner
replying that he was ready to suffer at whatever time the court
might appoint, the Judge said;

"Mr. Green, you must know that it is a very serious matter to be
hung.  It can't happen to a man more than once in his life, and
you had better take all the time you can get; the court will give you
till this day four weeks.  Mr. Clerk, look at the almanac and see if
this day four weeks comes on Sunday."  The Clerk after examination
reported that that day four weeks came on Friday.  The Judge then
said:  "Mr. Green, the court gives you till this day four weeks,
and then you are to be hanged."

Whereupon the prosecuting officer, the Hon. James Turney, an able and
dignified lawyer, said:

"May it please the court, on solemn occasion like the present, when
the life of a human being is to be sentenced away for crime by
an earthly tribunal, it is usual and proper for courts to pronounce
a formal sentence, in which the leading features of the crime shall
be brought to the recollection of the prisoner, a sense of his
guilt impressed upon his conscience, and in which the prisoner
should be duly exhorted to repentance and warned against the judgment
in a world to come."

To which the Judge replied:  "Oh, Mr. Turney, Mr. Green understands
the whole matter as well as if I had preached to him a month.
He knows he has got to be hung this day four weeks.  You understand
it that way, Mr. Green, don't you?"

"Yes," said the prisoner, upon which the Judge again expressing
the hope that he and all his friends down on Indian Creek would
understand that it was the act of the jury and of the law, _and
not of the Judge,_ ordered the prisoner to be remanded to jail,
and the court adjourned for the term.

For some reason, by no means satisfactorily explained, Judge Reynolds
retired from the bench at the end of his four years' term.  In
"Breese," the first volume of Illinois reports, is an opinion by
Judge Reynolds which has been the subject of amusing comment by
three generations of lawyers.  After giving sundry reasons why
there was error in the judgment below, the learned Judge concludes:
"Therefore, the judgment _ought to be_ reversed; but inasmuch as
the court is equally divided in opinion, it is therefore

He then resumed the practice of the law, and as he says, "was
familiar with the people, got acquainted with everybody, and became
somewhat popular.  I had no settled object in view other than to
make a living, and to continue on my humble, peaceable, and agreeable
manner."  In view of the aversion already shown to office-holding,
the following disclaimer upon the part of the Judge seems wholly
superfluous:  "I had no political ambition or aspirations for office

It is gratifying to know that at this time his domestic affairs
were in a satisfactory condition:  "Plain and unpretending; never kept
any liquor in the house--treated my friends to every civility except
liquor; used an economy bordering on parsimony."

Under the favorable conditions mentioned, the Judge was enabled to
overcome his aversion to holding office, and became a humble member
of the State Legislature immediately upon his retirement from
the bench.  That his "modest aspirations" were on a higher plane
than that of ordinary legislators will clearly appear from the
following:  "I entered this Legislature without any ulterior views,
and with an eye single to advance the best interests of the State,
and particularly the welfare of old St. Clair County.  My only
ambition was to acquit myself properly, and to advance the best
interests of the country."

Two years later, the aversion of the Old Ranger for office was
again overcome, as will appear from the following:  "I entered this
Legislature, as I had the last, without any pledge or restraints
whatever; I then was, and am yet, only an humble member of the
Democratic party."

His friends were again on the war-path and the shadow of the chief
executive office of the State was now beginning to fall across his
pathway.  He says:

"It would require volumes to record the transactions of these
Legislatures, and of my humble labors in them; but it was my course
of conduct in these two sessions of the General Assembly that
induced my friends, _without any solicitation on my part,_ to offer
me as a candidate for Governor.  I was urged not by politicians,
but by reasonable and reflecting men, more to advance the interest
of the State than my own."

If we did not, from his own lips, know how the Judge loathed
"the arts of politicians," we might almost be tempted to conclude from
the following that he was one of them:

"I traversed every section of the State, and knew well the people.
My friends had the utmost confidence in my knowledge of the people,
and when I suggested any policy to be observed, this suggestion
was consequently carried out as I requested--thus placing all under
one leader."

This, it will be remembered, was in 1830, and neither Reynolds nor
Kinney, his competitor, had received a party nomination.  Both were
of the same party, Kinney being a strong Jackson man of the
ultra type, and the Judge only a "plain, humble, reflecting Jackson

At one time during the campaign it seemed as if there were real
danger of this candidate of the "reflecting men of the State"
actually falling into the ways and wiles of politicians.  "I often
addressed the people in churches, in courthouses, and in the
open air, myself occupying literally the stump of a large tree;
_at times also in a grocery."_

The fiery and abusive hand-bills against his competitor he did not
attempt to restrain his friends from circulating, "as they had a
right to exercise their own judgment"; but he declares he did
not circulate one himself.  He moreover felicitates himself upon
the fact that his conciliatory course gained him votes.

This noted contest lasted eighteen months, as Reynolds says, and, the
State being sparsely populated, he enjoyed the personal acquaintance
of almost every voter.  The fact, as he further states, that his
opponent was a clergyman, was a great drawback to him, and almost all
the Christian sects, except his own--the anti-missionary Baptists--
opposed him.  With a candor that does him credit, the Judge admits
"the support of the religious people was not so much _for me,_ but
_against him."_

No national issues were discussed, but one point urged by Kinney
against the proposed Michigan canal was, "that it would flood
the country with Yankees."  It would be a great mistake to suppose
that Reynolds himself wholly escaped vituperation.  On the contrary,
he claims the credit of being "the best abused man in the State."
He relates that one of the stories told on him was, "that I saw
a scarecrow, the effigy of a man in a corn-field, just at dusk,
and that I said, 'How are you, my friend?  Won't you take some of
my hand bills to distribute?'"

Some light is shed on the politics of the good old days of our
fathers by the following:  "The party rancor in the campaign raged
so high that neighborhoods fell out with one another, and the angry
and bitter feelings entered into the common transactions of life."

If the contest had lasted a year or two longer it is not improbably
that our candidate would have fallen from his high "reflecting"
state to the low level of artful politician.  "It was the universal
custom of the times to treat with liquor.  We both did it; but
he was condemned for it more than myself by the religious community,
_he being a preacher of the Gospel."_

Some atonement, however, is made for the bad whiskey our model
candidate dispensed by the noble sentiment with which he closes
this chapter of his contest:  "I was, and am yet, one of the people,
and every pulsation of our hearts beats in unison."

Having been elected by a considerable majority as he modestly
remarks, our Governor-elect falls into something of a philosophical
train of thought, and horror of politicians and their wiles and
ways again possessed him.  He says:

"It may be considered vanity and frailty in me, but when I was
elected Governor of the State on fair, honorable principles by the
masses, without intrigue or management of party or corrupt politicians,
I deemed it the decided approbation of my countrymen, and consequently
a great honor."

The admonition of this sage statesman to the rising generation upon
the subject of office-seeking, is worthy of profound consideration:

"But were I to live over again another life, I think I would have the
moral courage to refrain from aspiring for any office within the
gift of the people.  By no means do I believe a person should be
sordid and selfish in all his actions, yet cannot a person be more
useful to the public if he possesses talents in other situations
than in office?"

Some memory of the well-known ingratitude of republics evidently
entered like iron into his very soul when his memoirs were written:

"Moreover, a public officer may toil and labor all his best days
with the utmost fidelity and patriotism, and the masses who reap
the reward of his labors frequently permit him, without any particular
fault upon his part, to live and die in his old age with disrespect.
Witness the punishment inflicted on Socrates, on our Saviour,
and many others for no crime whatever.  But this contumely and
disrespect ought not to deter _a good and qualified man_ from
entering the public service, if he is satisfied that the good of
the country requires it."

At this point in the career of this eminent public servant, deep
sympathy is aroused on account of the conflict between his humility
and a not very clearly-defined belief that something was due to
the great office to which he had been elevated.  As preliminary,
however, to accomplishing what was for the best interests of the
people it must not be forgotten that "my first object was to soften
down the public mind to its sober senses."  That no living man was
better qualified for the accomplishment of so praiseworthy a purpose
will now appear:  "It has been my opinion of my humble self,
that whatever small forte I might possess was to conciliate and
soften down a turbulent and furious people."

This being all satisfactorily accomplished and the abundant reward
of the peacemaker in sure keeping for this humble instrument,
his efforts were now directed toward the discharge of the duties
of the office to which he had so unexpectedly been called.

That this hitherto unquestioned "friend of the people" was now
manifesting a slight tendency toward the frailties and vanities of
the common run of men, will appear from the following:

"It was my nature not to feel or appear elevated, but I discovered
that my appearance and deportment, at times, might look like affected
humility or mock modesty, which I sincerely despised, and then
_I would straighten up a little."_

It may be truly said of Reynolds, as Macaulay said of Horace Walpole:
"The conformation of his mind was such that whatever was little
seemed to him great; and whatever was great, seemed to him little."

Having in his inaugural given expression to the noble sentiment
that "proscription for opinion's sake is the worst enemy to the
Republic," he at once generously dispelled whatever apprehensions his
late opponents might feel as to what was to befall them, by the
assurance:  "Therefore, all those who honestly and honorably
supported my respectable opponent in the last election for Governor
shall experience from me no inconvenience on that account."
Unfortunately no light is shed upon the interesting inquiry as
to what "inconvenience" was experienced by those who had otherwise
than "honestly and honorably" supported his respectable opponent
in the late contest.

The Black Hawk War was the principal event of the administration
of Governor Reynolds.  A treaty of peace being concluded, the
Indians were removed beyond the Mississippi River.  In all this
the Governor acquitted himself with credit.

That his aversion to office-holding was in some measure lessening,
will appear from the following:

"Being in the office of Governor for some years, I was prevented
from the practice of the law, and in the meantime had been engaged
in public life until it commenced _to be a kind of second nature
to me._  Moreover, I was then young, ardent, and ambitious, so that
I really thought it was right for me to offer for Congress; and
I did so, in the Spring of 1834."

An "artful politician" would probably have waited until the expiration
of his term as Governor.  Not so with this "friend of the people."
He was not only elected to the next Congress, but the death of the
sitting member for the District creating a vacancy, Reynolds was
of course elected to that also, and was thus at one time Governor of
the State and member elect both to the next and to the present

His triumph over his "able and worthy competitor" is accounted for
in this wise:  "I was myself tolerably well informed in the science
of electioneering with the masses of the people.  I was raised with
the people, and was literally one of them.  We always acted together,
and our common instincts, feelings and interests were the same."
He here modestly ventured the opinion that his "efforts on the
stump, while _making no pretension to classic eloquence,_ yet
flowing naturally from the heart, supplied in them many defects."

A mite of self-approval, tinged with a philosophy which appears to
have been always kept on tap, closes this chapter of his remarkable
career.  He says:

"I sincerely state that I never regarded as important the salary
of the office, but I entered public office with a sincere desire
to advance the best interest of the country, which was my main
reward.  If a person would subdue his ambition for office and remain
a private citizen, he would be a more happy man."

That he must have been the most miserable of men, during the greater
part of his long life, clearly appears from the following:  "There
is no person happy who is in public office, or a candidate for

A more extensive field of usefulness now opened up to the Old Ranger
as he took his seat in Congress.  He had many projects in mind for
the benefit of the people--one, the reduction of the price of
the public lands to actual settlers; another, the improvement of
our Western rivers.  But like many other members both before and
since his day, he found that "these things were easier to talk
about on the stump than to do."  He candidly admits:  "This body was
much greater than I had supposed, and I could effect much less than
I had contemplated."

He informs us that he felt like a country boy just from home the
first time, as he entered the hall of the law-makers of the
great Republic.  The city of Washington, grand and imposing,
impressed him deeply, but was as the dust in the balance to "the
assemblage of great men at the seat of Government of the United
States, and at the opening of Congress, when a grand and really
imposing spectacle was presented."

His profound admiration for some of his associates upon the broader
theatre of the public service found vent in the following eloquent

"When the Roman Empire reached the highest pinnacle of literary
fame and political power in the reign of Augustus Caesar, the period
was called the Augustan age.  There was a period that existed
eminently in the Jackson administration and a few years after that
might be called the Augustan age of Congress.  So extraordinary
a constellation of great and distinguished individuals may never
again appear in office at the seat of government."

If apology were needed for the new members' exalted opinion of his
associates, it can readily be found in the fact that among them in
the House were John Quincy Adams, John Bell, Thomas F. Marshall,
Ben Hardin, James K. Polk, Millard Fillmore, and Franklin Pierce.
The first named had been President of the United States, and the
last three were yet to hold that great office.  At the same time
"the constellation of great stars" that almost appalled the Illinois
member upon his introduction included, in the Senate, Crittenden, Wright,
Cass, Woodbury, Preston, Buchanan, Grundy, Benton, Clay, Calhoun, and

On finally taking leave of Congress, our member congratulates
himself that during seven years of service he was absent from
his seat but a single day.  That all his humble endeavors were
in the interest of the people, of course, goes without saying.  He
deprecates in strong terms the extravagance of some members of
Congress in allowing their expenses to exceed their salaries,
and then leaving the capital in debt.  That he did nothing of
the kind, but practised economy in all his expenses, it is
hardly necessary to state.  He is not, however, entitled to a patent
for the discovery that "the expenses for living at the seat of
Government of the United States are heavy."

Being a widower, conditions were now favorable for a little romance
to be mingled with the dull cares of state.  Near the close of his
last term, he says:  "I became acquainted with a lady in the District
of Columbia, and we, in consideration of mutual love and affection,
married.  The same tie binds us in matrimonial happiness to the
present time."  He here admits a fact that might at this later day
subject him to Executive displeasure:  "Posterity will have an
unsettled account against us for having _added nothing to the great
reservoir of the human family."_

It may be of interest to know that while in Congress our member
humbly accepted the appointment tendered him by Governor Carlin as
Commissioner to negotiate the Illinois and Michigan Canal bonds.
His earnest desire to have some one else appointed availed nothing,
and in the interest of the great enterprise, upon the success of
which the future of the State seemed to hang, he spent the summer of
1839 in Europe.  While his mission abroad was fruitless as to
its immediate object, it is gratifying to know that our commissioner
returned duly impressed with "the immense superiority in every
possible manner of our own country, and all its glorious institutions,
over those of the monarchies of the old world."

It would be idle to suppose that the retirement of the Old Ranger from
Congress was to terminate his career of usefulness to the people.
On the contrary, he says:  "In 1846, I was elected a member from
St. Clair County to the General Assembly of the State.  The main
object of myself and friends was to obtain a charter for a macadamized
road from Belleville to the Mississippi River, opposite St. Louis."

This all satisfactorily accomplished, and the Legislature adjourned,
"I turned my time and attention to the calm and quiet of life.
With my choice library of one thousand volumes I indulged in the
study of science and literature.  I soon discovered that the bustle
and turmoil of political life did not produce happiness."

Sad to relate, this faithful public servant, worn with the cares
of state, was not even yet permitted to lay aside his armor.
The happiness of private life, for which his soul yearned as the
hart panteth for the water brooks, was again postponed for the
hated bustle and turmoil of politics.  In 1852, against his
remonstrances, he was again elected to the Legislature, and upon
the organization of the House unanimously chosen Speaker.

Reluctantly indeed, we now take leave of John Reynolds--the quaintest
of all the odd characters this country of ours has known.  In doing
so, it is indeed a comfort to know that, true as the needle to the
pole, his great heart continued to beat in unison with that of the
people.  Ascending the Speaker's stand, and lifting the gavel, with
deep emotion he said--and these are to us his last words:  "I have
nothing to labor for but the public good.  My life has been devoted
to promote the public interest of Illinois, and in my latter days it
will afford me profound pleasure to advance now, as I have always done
in the past, _the best interests of the people."_



Just across the aisle from my seat in the House of Representatives
during the forty-sixth Congress sat George Q. Cannon, the delegate
from the Territory of Utah.  He held this position for many years,
and possessed in the highest degree the confidence of the Mormon
people.  Fifteen years later, when presiding over the Senate, I
administered the oath of office to his son, the Hon. Frank J.
Cannon, the first chosen to represent the State of Utah in the Upper
Chamber of the National Congress.  Senator Cannon was then in high
favor with "the powers that be" in Salt Lake City, but for some
cause not well understood by the Gentile world, is now _persona
non grata_ with the head of the Mormon Church.  The younger Cannon
was not a polygamist, and no objection was urged to his being seated
upon the presentation of his credentials as a Senator.  His father,
the delegate, was in theory a polygamist, and had "the courage
of his convictions" to the extent of being the husband of five
wives, and the head of as many separate households.  This,
before the days of "unfriendly legislation," was, in Mormon
parlance, called "living your religion."

The delegate and the Senator were both men of ability, and possessed
in large degree the respect of their associates.  The former was
in early youth a resident of Illinois, and was of the advance guard
of the Mormon exodus to the valley of the Great Salt Lake soon
after the assassination of the "prophet."  When I first visited
Salt Lake City, in 1879, George Q. Cannon, in addition to being
the delegate in Congress, was one of the "Quorum of the Twelve,"
and was in the line of succession to the presidency of the Church.
From him I learned much that was of interest concerning the history
and tenets of the Mormon people.  The venerable John Taylor was
then the president of the Church, the immediate successor of Brigham
Young.  He was in early life a resident with his people in Nauvoo,
Illinois, and was a prisoner in the Carthage jail with the "Prophet
Joseph" at the time of his assassination, in 1844.  President Taylor
gave me a graphic description of that now historic tragedy, and of
his own narrow escape from the fate of his idolized leader.

A brief notice of this singular people, and of what they did and
suffered in Illinois, may not be wholly without interest.  Mormonism
was the apple of discord in the State during almost the entire
official term of the late Governor Ford.  More than one little army
was, during that period, sent into Hancock County--"the Mormon
country"--to suppress disturbances and maintain public order.

Governor Ford says:

"The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, as this organization
is denominated by its adherents, is to be viewed from the antagonistic
Gentile and Mormon standpoints.

"Joseph Smith, the founder of the Mormon Church and its prophet,
was born in Vermont, in 1805, of obscure parentage.  His early
education was extremely limited.  When he first began to act the
prophet, he was ignorant of almost everything which pertained to
science; but he made up in natural cunning for many deficiencies
of education.  At the age of ten, he was taken by his father to
Wayne County, New York, where his youth was spent in an idle,
vagabond life, roaming the woods, dreaming of buried treasures,
and exerting himself to find them by the twisting of a forked stick
in his hands, or by looking through enchanted stones.  He and
his father were 'water witchers,' always ready to point out the
exact points where wells could be successfully dug.  While leading
an idle, profligate life, Joseph Smith became acquainted with Sidney
Rigdon, a man of talents and great plausibility.  Rigdon was the
possessor of a religious romance written some years before by a
Presbyterian clergyman.  The perusal of this book suggested to
Smith and Rigdon the idea of starting a new religion.  By them a
story was accordingly devised to the effect that golden plates had
been found buried near Palmyra, New York, containing a record
inscribed on them in unknown characters, which, when deciphered by
the power of inspiration, gave the history of the ten lost tribes of
Israel in their wanderings through Asia into America, where they
had settled and flourished, and where, in due time, Christ came
and preached the Gospel to them, appointed his twelve Apostles,
and was crucified here, nearly in the same manner he had been in
Jerusalem.  The record then pretended to give the history of the
American Christians for a few hundred years until the wickedness
of the people called down the judgment of God upon them, which
resulted in their extermination.  Several nations from the Isthmus
of Darien to the northern extremity of the continent were engaged in
continual warfare.  The culmination of all this was the battle
of Cumorah, fought many centuries ago near the present site of
Palmyra, between the Lamanites and the Nephites--the former being the
heathen and the latter the Christians of this continent.  In
this battle, in which hundreds of thousands were slain, the Nephites
perished from the earth, except a remnant, who escaped to the
southern country.  Among this number was Mormon, a righteous man
who was divinely directed to make a record of these important events
on plates of gold, and who buried them in the earth, to be
discovered in future times.  'The Book of Mormon'--none other than
the religious romance above mentioned--is the pretended translation
of the hieroglyphics said to have been inscribed on the golden

"The account given of himself by the 'prophet' is of far different
tenor from the one just given.  While yet a youth he became greatly
concerned in regard to his soul's salvation; and being deeply
agonized in spirit, he sought divine guidance.  While fervently
engaged in supplication, his mind was taken away from the surrounding
objects and enwrapped in a heavenly vision, and he saw two glorious
personages similar in form and features and surrounded with a
brilliant light, outshining the sun at noonday.  He was then informed
by these glorious personages that all religious denominations were
in error, and were not acknowledged of God as His church and kingdom,
and that he, Joseph, was expressly commanded not to go after them.
At the same time, he received a promise that the fulness of the
Gospel should at some future time be known to him."

Subsequently, on the evening of September 23, 1823, at the hour of
six, while he was engaged in prayer, suddenly a light like that of
day, only far more pure and glorious, burst into the room, as though
the house were filled with fire, and a personage stood before
him surrounded with a glory far greater than he had yet seen.  This
messenger proclaimed himself to be an angel of God, sent with
the joyful tidings that the covenant which God had made with ancient
Israel was about to be fulfilled; that the preparatory work for
the second coming of Messiah was speedily to commence; that the
time was at hand for the Gospel to be proclaimed in all its fulness
and power to all nations, to the end that a peculiar people might
be prepared for the millennial reign.  He was further informed that
he, Joseph, was to be the instrument in God's hand to bring about this
glorious dispensation.  The angel also informed him in regard to
the American Indians, who they were, and whence they came, with
a sketch of their origin, progress, civilization, righteousness,
and iniquity, and why the blessing of God had been withdrawn
from them as a people.  He was also told where certain plates were
deposited, whereon were engraved the records of the ancient prophets,
who once existed on this continent.  And then, to wit, on the last
day mentioned, the angel of the Lord delivered into his hands the
records mentioned, which were engraved on plates which had the
appearance of gold.  They were filled with engravings in
Egyptian characters and bound together in a volume as the leaves
of a book; with the records was found a curious instrument which
the ancients called "Urim and Thummim," which consisted of two
transparent stones set in the rim of a bow fastened to a breastplate.
By the instrumentality of the Urim and Thummim, Joseph was enabled
to translate the hieroglyphics aforementioned.

Thus translated, the records mentioned became "The Book of Mormon."
The last of the ancient prophets had inscribed these records upon the
golden plates by the command of God, and deposited them in the
earth, where, fifteen centuries later, they were divinely revealed
to Joseph Smith.

It is not pretended that the golden plates are still in existence,
but that after being translated by Joseph Smith, by the aid of the
wonderful instrument mentioned, they were re-delivered to the angel.
The non-production of the plates thus satisfactorily explained,
and secondary evidence being admissible, eleven witnesses appeared
and testified to having actually seen the plates; three of the
number further declaring that they were present when Joseph received
the plates at the hands of the angel.

Upon my giving expression, to a high Mormon official, of some
lingering doubts as to the absolute authenticity of the above
narrative, I was significantly reminded of the words of the immortal

  "Disparage not the faith thou dost not know,
  Lest, to thy peril, thou aby it dear."

At all events, upon the pretended revelations mentioned, Joseph
Smith as "prophet" founded the Church of the Latter-Day Saints,
near Palmyra, New York, in 1830.  Nor did he lack for followers.
The eleven witnesses mentioned, and others, were commissioned
and sent forth to proclaim the new gospel, and disciples in
large numbers soon flocked to the standard of the "prophet."

The history of delusions from the days of Mahomet to the present
time illustrates the eagerness with which men are ever ready to
seek out new inventions and to discard the old beliefs for the new.
There is no tenet so monstrous but in some breast it will find

  "In religion
  What damned error, but some sober brow
  Will bless it and approve it with a text."

In 1833, Mormon colonies were established at Kirtland, Ohio, and
in Jackson County, Missouri, but, owing to Gentile persecution,
the "saints" at length shook the dust of those unhallowed localities
from their feet, and settled in large numbers in Hancock County,
Illinois.  Here they built Nauvoo, the "Holy City," "the beautiful
habitation for man."  The Mormon historian says:  "The surrounding
lands were purchased by the saints, and a town laid out, which was
named 'Nauvoo' from the Hebrew, which signifies fair, very beautiful,
and it actually fills the definition of the words, for nature
has not formed a parallel anywhere on the banks of the Mississippi."

The sacred city, as it was called, soon contained a population
of fifteen thousand souls, gathered from all quarters of the globe.
Here were built the home of the prophet, the hall of the seventies,
a concert hall, and other public institutions.  Chief among
these buildings was the Temple, described by the same historian as
"glistening in white limestone upon the hilltops, a shrine in
the wilderness whereat all the nations of the earth may worship,
whereat all the people may inquire of God and receive His holy

This temple, erected at a cost of nearly a million dollars, was at
a later day visited by Governor Reynolds, and is thus described by

"I was in the Mormon temple at Nauvoo.  It was a large and splendid
edifice, built in the Egyptian style of architecture; and its
grandeur and magnificence truly astonished me.  It was erected
on the top of the Mississippi bluff, which has a prospect which
reached as far as the eye could extend over the country and up and
down the river.  The most singular appendage of this splendid
edifice was the font in which the immersion of the saints was
practised.  It was composed of marble."

At the time of the Mormon emigration to Illinois, in 1839, the Whig
and Democratic parties in the State were in a heated struggle
for supremacy.  The respective party leaders at once realized that
the new importation of voters might be the controlling political
factor in the State.  To conciliate the Mormons and gain their
support soon became the aim of the politicians.  This fact is
the keynote to the statement of Governor Ford:

"A city charter drawn up to suit the Mormons was presented to
the Legislature.  No one opposed it, but both parties were active in
getting it through.  This charter, and others passed in the same
manner, incorporated Nauvoo, provided for the election of a mayor,
four aldermen, and nine councillors, and gave them power to pass
all ordinances necessary for the benefit of the city which were
not repugnant to the Constitution.  This seemed to give them power
to pass ordinances in violation of the laws of the State, and to
erect a system of government for themselves.  This charter also
incorporated the Nauvoo Legion,--entirely independent of the military
organization of the State, and not subject to the commands of
its officers.  Provision was also made for a court-martial for the
Legion, to be composed of its own officers; and in the exercise of
their duties they were not bound to regard the laws of the State.
Thus it was proposed to establish for the Mormons a Government
within a Government, a Legislature with power to pass ordinances
at war with the laws of the State.  These charters were unheard
of, anti-republican and capable of infinite abuse.  The great law of
the separation of the powers of government was wholly disregarded.
The mayor was at once the executive power, the judiciary, and part
of the Legislature.  One would have thought that these charters
stood a poor chance of passing the Legislature of a republican
people, jealous of their liberties, nevertheless they did pass both
Houses unanimously.  Each party was afraid to object to them,
for fear of losing the Mormon vote."

Some indications of the hopes and fears of party leaders may be
gleaned from the statement of the politic John Reynolds, then a
representative in Congress.  He thus speaks of the visit of Joseph
Smith to the national capital:

"I had recently received letters that Smith was a very important
character in Illinois, and to give him the civilities that were
due him.  He stood at the time fair and honorable, except his
fanaticism on religion.  The sympathies of the people were in
his favor.  It fell to my lot to introduce him to the President,
and one morning the Prophet Smith and I called at the White House to
see the chief magistrate.  When we were about to enter the apartments
of President Van Buren, the prophet asked me to introduce him as
a Latter-day Saint.  It was so unexpected and so strange to me that
I could scarcely believe he would urge such nonsense on this occasion
to the President.  But he repeated the request, and I introduced
him as a Latter-day Saint, which made the President smile.  The
Prophet remained in Washington a greater part of the winter, and
preached often.  I became well acquainted with him.  He was a person
rather larger than ordinary stature, well proportioned, and
would weigh about one hundred and eighty pounds.  He was rather
fleshy, but was in his appearance, amiable and benevolent.  He did
not appear to possess barbarity in his nature, nor to possess that
great talent and boundless mind that would enable him to accomplish
the wonders he performed."

Referring again to the narrative of Ford:

"Joseph Smith was duly installed Mayor of Nauvoo--this _Imperium
in Imperio_--he was _ex-officio_ Judge of the Mayor's court, and
Chief Justice of the Municipal court; and in this capacity he was to
interpret the laws he had assisted to make.  The Nauvoo Legion was
organized with a multitude of high officers.  It was divided
into divisions, brigades, cohorts, battalions, and companies;
and Joseph Smith as Lieutenant-General was the Commander-in-Chief.
The common council of Nauvoo passed many ordinances for the punishment
of crime.  The punishment was generally different from, and much
more severe than, that provided by the laws of the State."

That any Legislature would ever, under any stress of circumstances,
have conferred--or have attempted to confer--such powers upon a
municipality is beyond comprehension.  The statement, if unsustained
by the official State records, would now challenge belief.

Under the favorable conditions mentioned, the Mormons were now upon
the high wave of prosperity in Illinois.  Their number had increased
to more than twenty thousand in Hancock and the counties adjoining.
The owners of large tracts of valuable land, protected by legislation
that finds no parallel in any State, courted by the leaders of both
parties, and actually holding for a time the balance of political power
in the State--they seemed indeed to be "the chosen people," as
claimed by their prophet.

It needed no prophet, however, to foretell that this could not long
continue.  The Mormon leaders failed to realize that to champion
the cause of either party would of necessity arouse the fierce
hostility of the other, as in very truth it did.  Politics, the
prime cause of fortune's favors to them in the beginning, proved
their undoing in the end.

Joseph Smith had, soon after his removal from Missouri, been arrested
upon a requisition from the Governor of that State.  From this
arrest he was discharged when brought upon a writ of _habeas corpus_
before Judge Pope, a Whig.  The ground of the decision was, that
as Smith was not in Missouri at the time of the attempt upon the
life of Governor Boggs, and that whatever he did--if he did anything
--to aid or encourage the attempt, was done in Illinois, and not
within the jurisdiction of Missouri laws, he was not a fugitive
from justice within the provision of the Constitution of the United
States.  The decision excited much comment at the time, but, as
stated by Judge Blodgett, it "has borne the test of criticism, and
is now the accepted rule of law in interstate extradition cases."

This for a time inclined the Mormons to the support of the Whig
party.  Again arrested, the prophet, under similar proceedings,
was discharged by a Democratic Judge.  This, as Governor Ford says,

"Induced Smith to issue a proclamation to his followers declaring Judge
Douglas to be a master spirit, and exhorting them to vote for
the Democratic ticket for Governor.  Smith was too ignorant to know
whether he owed his discharge to the law or to party favor.  Such was
the ignorance of the Mormons generally, that they thought anything
to be law which they thought expedient.  All action of the Government
unfavorable to them they looked upon as wantonly oppressive, and
when the law was administered in their favor they attributed it to
partiality and kindness."

The last hope of the Whigs for Mormon support was abandoned in
1843.  In the district of which Hancock County was a part, the
opposing candidates for Congress were Joseph P. Hoge, Democrat,
and Cyrus Walker, Whig, both lawyers of distinction.  The latter
had been counsel for Smith in the Habeas Corpus proceedings last
mentioned.  Grateful for the services then rendered, Smith
openly espoused the candidacy of Walker in the pending contest.
That there were tricks in politics even more than sixty years ago,
will now appear.  One Backinstos, a politician of Hancock County,
declared upon his return from the State capital that he had assurances
from the Governor that the Mormons would be amply protected as long
as they voted the Democratic ticket.  It is hardly necessary to
say that the Governor denied having given any such assurance.
However, the campaign lie of Backinstos, like many of its kind
before and since, proved a "good enough Morgan till after the
election."  This, it will be remembered, was before the days of
railroads and telegraphs, and the Mormon settlement was far remote
from the seat of government.  A partisan jumble, in which the
"saints" were the participants, and the low arts of the demagogues
and pretended revelations from God the chief ingredients, is
thus described by the historian just quoted:

"The mission of Backinstos produced an entire change in the minds of
the Mormon leaders.  They now resolved to drop their friend Walker
and take up Hoge, the Democratic candidate.  A great meeting of
several thousand Mormons was held the Saturday before the election.
Hiram Smith, patriarch and brother of the prophet, appeared in this
assembly and there solemnly announced to the people, that God
had revealed to him that the Mormons must support Mr. Hoge.  William
Law, another leader, next appeared and denied that the Lord had
made any such revelation.  He stated that to his certain knowledge
the prophet Joseph was in favor of Mr. Walker, and that the prophet
was more likely to know the mind of the Lord than the patriarch.
Hiram again repeated his revelation, with a greater tone of authority,
but the people remained in doubt until the next day, Sunday, when the
prophet Joseph himself appeared before the assemblage.  He there
stated that he himself was in favor of Mr. Walker and intended
to vote for him; that he would not, if he could, influence any man
in giving his vote; that he considered it a mean business for
any man to dictate to the people whom they should vote for; that
he had heard his brother Hiram had received a revelation from
the Lord on the subject; but for his own part, he did not much
believe in revelations on the subject of election.  Brother Hiram was,
however, a man of truth; he had known him intimately ever since he
was a boy, and he had never known him to tell a lie.  If brother
Hiram said he had received a revelation he had no doubt he had.
When the Lord speaks let all the earth be silent."

That the prophet Joseph well understood how to

  "By indirections find directions out,"

clearly appears from his cunning expression of faith in the pretended
revelation of the patriarch Hiram.  The effect of this speech
was far-reaching.  It turned the entire Mormon vote to Hoge, thereby
securing his election to Congress, and at once placed the Whigs in
the ranks of the implacable anti-Mormon party then in process of
rapid formation.  The crusade that now began for the expulsion
of the Mormons from the State, was greatly augmented by acts of
unparalleled folly upon their own part.  In order to protect their
leaders from arrest, it was decreed by the City Council of Nauvoo
that no writ unless issued and approved by its Mayor should be
executed within the sacred city, and that any officer attempting
to execute a writ otherwise issued, within the city, should be
subject to imprisonment for life, and that the pardoning power
of the Governor of the State was in such case suspended.  This
ordinance when published created great astonishment and indignation.
The belief became general that the Mormons were about to set up
for themselves a separate Government wholly independent of that of
the State.  This belief was strengthened by the presentation of
a petition to Congress praying for the establishment of a
Territorial Government for Nauvoo and vicinity.

Apparently oblivious of the gathering storm, Joseph Smith early in
1844 committed his crowning act of folly by announcing himself a
candidate for the high office of President of the United States.
Not only this, but as stated by Governor Ford,

"Smith now conceived the idea of making himself a temporal Prince as
well as the spiritual leader of his people.  He instituted a new
and select order of the priesthood, the members of which were to
be priests and kings, temporal and spiritual.  These were to be
the nobility, the upholders of his throne.  He caused himself to
be crowned and anointed king and priest far above all others.
To uphold his pretensions to royalty, he deduced his descent by an
unbroken chain from Joseph, the son of Jacob, and that of his wife
from some other renowned personage of Old Testament history.
The Mormons openly denounced the Government of the United States, as
being utterly corrupt, and about to pass away and be replaced by
the government of God, to be administered by his servant Joseph.
It is at this day certain, also, that about this time, the prophet
instituted an order in the Church called the Danite Band.  This
was to be a body-guard about the person of their sovereign, sworn to
obey his commands as those of God himself."

During late years a war of words has been waged within the
Mormon church over the question of the responsibility of the prophet
Joseph for the introduction of polygamy as a cardinal tenet of its
creed.  The son of the prophet, it will be remembered, led a revolt
against Brigham Young, soon after the succession of the latter
to the presidency of the Church, and is now at the head of the
Mormon establishment at Plano, Illinois.  This branch of the Church
rejects the dogma of polygamy, declaring it to be utterly repugnant
to the divine revelation to Joseph, and to early Mormon belief and

Upon the contrary, the main body in Utah--of which Joseph F. Smith
the nephew of the prophet and son of Hiram the patriarch is now
the president--found their belief in the divine character of their
peculiar institution upon alleged revelations direct from God to
the founder of the Church.  The statement of Governor Ford, written
nearly sixty years ago, sheds some light upon this controversy:

"A doctrine was now revealed that no woman could get to heaven
except as the wife of a Mormon elder.  The elders were allowed
to have as many of these wives as they could maintain; and it was
a doctrine of the Church that any female could be 'sealed up to
eternal life' by uniting herself as wife to the elder of her choice.
This doctrine was maintained by appeal to the Old Testament scriptures
and by the example of Abraham and Jacob and Daniel and Solomon,
the favorites of God in a former age of the world."

As the necessary result of the causes mentioned, the followers
of the prophet soon found themselves bitterly antagonized by almost
the whole anti-Mormon population of the "Military Tract."  Charges
and counter-charges were made, the arrest of the leaders of the
opposing parties followed in rapid succession, and outrages and
riots were of daily occurrence.  Public meetings were held; all
the crimes known to the calendar were charged against the Mormons,
and resolutions passed demanding their immediate expulsion from the
State.  What is known in Illinois history as the "Mormon war"
followed closely in the wake of the events just mentioned.  Innocent
persons were, in many instances, the victims of the folly and of
the crimes of unprincipled and brutal leaders.

The events of this period constitute a dark chapter in the history
of the State--one that can be recalled only with feelings of horror.
The great body of citizens, it is needless to say, favored the
rigid maintenance of order and the protection of life and property;
but it was the very heyday for the lawless and vicious element
of all parties.

That this condition of affairs could not long continue was manifest.
The bloody termination, however, came in a manner unexpected to
all.  Two of the Mormon leaders, William and Wilson Law, were,
at the time mentioned, in open revolt against the newly-assumed
powers and the alleged practices of the prophet.  To strengthen
their opposition they procured a printing-press and equipment, and
issued from their office in Nauvoo one number of a small weekly,
"The Expositor."  By order of the Mayor, Smith, and decree of
the Council, the press was seized and destroyed, and the Law brothers
and their few adherents compelled to flee the Holy City.  Immediately
upon their arrival at Carthage, they caused warrants to be issued for
the arrest of Joseph and Hiram Smith, John Taylor, and others, for
the destruction of the printing-press.  The almost sovereign powers
previously conferred upon the city of Nauvoo now play an important
part in this drama.  The persons arrested, as above mentioned, were
at once brought by writs of _habeas corpus,_ issued by the Mayor
of Nauvoo, before the Municipal Court and there promptly discharged.
Governor Ford, whose righteous soul had been vexed to the limit of
endurance by unmerited abuse from Mormon and Gentile alike from
the beginning of this controversy, here indulges in a few expressions
of justifiable irony.  Of these proceedings he says:

"It clearly appeared both from the complaints of the citizens
and the admissions of the Mormons, that the whole proceedings of
the Mayor, Council, and Municipal Court were illegal and not to be
endured in a free country; but some apology might be made for
the court, as it had been repeatedly assured by some of the ablest
lawyers in the State of both political parties, when candidates
before that people, that it had full and complete power to issue
writs of _habeas corpus_ in all cases whatever."

  "In law, what plea so tainted and corrupt,
  But, being seasoned with a gracious voice,
  Obscures the show of evil."

The incidents mentioned added quickly fuel to the flame.  A new
warrant was issued by a magistrate in Carthage for the arrest of
the Mormon leaders and placed in the hands of an officer of the
State for execution.  The latter at once summoned the citizens
of the county, as a _posse comitatus,_ to aid in the arrests.
At this critical moment Governor Ford, in the interest of peace,
reached Carthage, the county seat.  Upon his arrival he found
the situation truly alarming.  Several hundred armed men from
the country around had hastily assembled and were encamped upon
the public square.  By order of the Governor, this force was
organized into companies and placed under the immediate command of
officers of his appointment.  At the conclusion of a speech by the
Governor, the officers and men pledged themselves to aid him in
upholding the laws, and in protecting the Mormon prisoners when
brought to Carthage for trial.

Meanwhile, Smith as lieutenant-general had called out the Nauvoo
Legion and proclaimed martial law in that city.  The Mormons from the
country promptly obeyed the call of their leader and marched to
his assistance, and Nauvoo became at once a vast military camp.
Governor Ford now demanded of the Mormon leaders the return of the
State arms furnished at the time of the organization of the Legion,
this demand, if not promptly complied with, to be enforced by an
immediate attack upon Nauvoo by the assembled forces encamped at

Appreciating now for the first time the hopelessness of a conflict
with State authorities, a number of the weapons were surrendered
and the Smiths, accompanied by Taylor and Richards, two other Mormon
leaders, went to Carthage and surrendered themselves to the officer
holding the warrant for their arrest.  Upon giving bond for their
appearance, they were at once released on charge of riot.  A new
complaint, charging them with treason--in levying war against
the State, declaring martial law in Nauvoo, and ordering out the
Legion to resist the execution of lawful process--was immediately lodged
against them, a warrant duly issued, the prisoners rearrested
and committed to the common jail of the county.  On the evening
following this arrest, the guards stationed at the jail for the
protection of the prisoners were attacked and overpowered by a mob
of several hundred persons.  Governor Ford states:

"An attempt was now made to break open the door; but Joseph Smith,
being armed with a six-barrel pistol furnished by his friends,
fired several times as the door was burst open and wounded three
of the assailants.  At the same time, several shots were fired into
the room, wounding John Taylor and killing Hiram Smith.  Joseph
Smith now attempted to escape by jumping out of the second-story
window; but the fall so stunned him that he was unable to rise,
and being placed by the conspirators in a sitting posture, they
despatched him by four balls shot through his body."

Thus perished, at the age of thirty-nine, the founder and prophet of
the Mormon Church.  Contradictory statements as to his real character
have come down to the present generation.  The estimate of Governor
Ford, who knew him well, is as follows:

"He was the most successful impostor in modern times; a man who,
though ignorant and coarse, had some great natural parts which
fitted him for temporary success, but which were so obscured and
counteracted by the inherent corruptness of his nature that he
never could succeed in establishing a system of policy which looked
to permanent success in the future.  It must not be supposed that the
pretended prophet practised the tricks of a common impostor; that he
was a dark and gloomy person with a long beard, a grave and severe
aspect, and a reserved and saintly carriage of his person.  On the
contrary, he was full of levity, even to boyish romping; dressed
like a dandy, and at times drank like a sailor and swore like a
pirate.  He could, as occasion required, be exceedingly meek in
his deportment, and then, again, be as rough and boisterous as a
highway robber; being always able to prove to his followers the
propriety of his conduct.  He always quailed before power, and was
arrogant to weakness.  At times he could put on an air of a penitent,
as if feeling the deepest humility for his sins, and suffering
unutterable anguish, and indulging in the most gloomy foreboding of
eternal woe.  At such times he would call for the prayers of the
brethren in his behalf with a wild and fearful anxiety and
earnestness.  He was six feet high, strongly built, and uncommonly
full muscled.  No doubt he was as much indebted for his influence
over an ignorant people to the superiority of his physical vigor as
to his great cunning and intellect."

Of a wholly different tenor is the tribute of Parley P. Pratt, the
poet and historian of the Mormon Church:

"President Smith was in person tall and well built, strong and
active; of a light complexion, light hair, blue eyes, and of an
expression peculiar to himself, on which the eye naturally rested with
interest and was never weary of beholding.  His countenance was
very mild, affable, and beaming with intelligence and benevolence mingled
with a look of interest and an unconscious smile of cheerfulness, and
entirely free from all restraint or affectation of gravity; and
there was something connected with the serene and steady penetrating
glance of his eye, as if he would penetrate the deepest abyss of
the human heart, gaze into eternity, penetrate the heavens, and
comprehend all worlds.  He possessed a noble boldness and independence
of character; his manner was easy and familiar, his rebuke terrible
as the lion, his benevolence unbounded as the ocean, his
intelligence universal, and his language abounding in original
eloquence peculiar to himself."

For a brief period following the assassination of the Smiths,
comparative quiet prevailed in the Mormon country.  The selection of
a successor to their murdered prophet, was now the absorbing question
among the Mormon people.  Revelations were published that the
prophet, in imitation of the Saviour, was to rise from the dead,
and some even reported that they had seen him attended by a celestial
army coursing the air on a great white horse.

Sydney Rigdon now aspired to be the head of the Church as the
successor to the martyred prophet.  His claims were verified by
a pretended revelation direct from heaven.  He was, however, at
once antagonized by the "quorum of the Twelve," and after a bitter
struggle, Apostle Brigham Young was chosen, and Rigdon expelled
from the Church and "given over to the buffetings of Satan."

The quiet immediately succeeding the tragedy was of short duration.
It was only the calm which precedes the storm.  While his followers
were invoking the vengeance of the law upon the murderers of the
prophet, the anti-Mormons were quietly organizing a crusade for
the expulsion of the entire Mormon population from the State.  The
trial of the assassins of the Smiths resulted in their acquittal, as
was to have been expected when the intense anti-Mormon feeling
existing throughout the immediate country is taken into account.
The result is even less surprising when it is remembered that
the principal witness for the prosecution supplemented his testimony
of having seen the crime committed, by the remarkable declaration that
immediately upon the death of Joseph, "a bright and shining
light descended upon his head, that several of the conspirators
were stricken with total blindness, and that he heard supernatural
voices in the air confirming the divine mission of the murdered

In the narration of these exciting events, the names of men who at
a later day achieved national distinction frequently occur.  The
Hon. O. H. Browning, since Senator and member of the Cabinet,
was chief counsel for the alleged murderers of the Smiths.  He was
at the time a distinguished Whig leader, and one of the most eloquent
men in the State.  The disorder and outrages that followed the
acquittal just mentioned called Governor Ford again to the seat of
war.  He says:

"When informed of these proceedings, I hastened to Jacksonville,
where in a conference with General Hardin, Judge Douglas, and
Mr. McDougal the Attorney-General of the State, it was agreed that
these gentlemen should proceed to Hancock County in all haste with
whatever force had been raised, and put an end to these disorders.
It was also agreed that they should unite their influence with mine
to induce the Mormons to leave the State.  The twelve apostles had
now become satisfied that the Mormons could not remain, or, if they
did, that the leaders would be compelled to abandon the sway
they exercised over them.  Through the intervention of General
Hardin, acting on instructions from me, an agreement was made
between the hostile parties for the voluntary removal of the greater
part of the Mormons across the Mississippi in the spring of 1846."

Of the advisors of the Governor in the adjustment mentioned, Douglas
and McDougall were at a later day distinguished Senators, respectively
from Illinois and California, and Hardin was killed while gallantly
leading his regiment at the battle of Buena Vista.

To the peaceable accomplishment of the purposes mentioned, a small
force under a competent officer was stationed for a time in Hancock
County.  The Governor justly felicitates himself that thereby "the
greater part of the Military Tract was saved from the horrors of
civil war in the winter time, when much misery would have followed
by the dispersion of families and the destruction of property."

The Mormon exodus from Illinois, once the "land of promise," now
began in terrible earnest.  Many farms and homes and large quantities
of personal effects were hastily disposed of at a great sacrifice.
The speeding was far different from the welcome but a few years
before so heartily extended to the incoming "saints."  The "Holy
City" and sacred temple soon to be destroyed were abandoned for
perilous journeyings in the wilderness.  The chapter that
immediately follows in the history of this people is indeed pathetic.
The terrible sufferings of the aged and infirm, of helpless women
and children, as the shadows of the long night of winter gathered about
them on their journey, can never be adequately told.  But, inspired
with the thought that they were the Israel of God, that Brigham
Young was their divinely appointed leader, that the pillar of cloud
by day and of fire by night ever went before them on their journeyings,
they patiently endured all dangers and hardships.

High upon the western slope of the Wasatch hard by the old wagon
trail which led down into the valley stands a huge rock around
whose base the Mormon leader assembled his followers just as the
last rays of a summer sun were falling upon the mountains.  In
stirring words he recalled their persecutions and trials, told them
that their long pilgrimage, the weary march by day and lonely vigil
by night, were now ended, and their Canaan the great valley
which stretched out before them.

Upon a visit to Salt Lake City nearly a third of a century ago,
I attended service in the great Tabernacle when it was filled to
overflowing, and yet so excellent were its acoustic arrangements
that every word of the speaker and every note of the organ could
be heard distinctly.  The surroundings were indeed imposing.  Upon
the great platform sat the President and his Council, the twelve
apostles, the seventy elders, with an innumerable army of bishops,
teachers, deacons, and other functionaries constituting the
lower order of the Mormon hierarchy.  The sermon was delivered
by the famous Orson Pratt, the Saint Paul of the Mormon Church,
a venerable patriarch of four score years, and yet, withal, a man of
wonderful power.

As our little party passed in front of the speaker's platform to
reach the door, he halted in his discourse, and stated to the
audience that the strangers within their gates were leaving because
of the near departure of their train and not because of any disrespect
to the service.  Then, bowing his aged head, he invoked the blessing
of the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob, upon the Gentile
strangers, and prayed "that their long journey might be ended in
safety, and that in the fulness of time, having witnessed the
manifestations of Almighty Power, they might return again, not
as sojourners, but as fellow-citizens with the saints, to dwell in
the Holy City."



Few men were better known in Washington, a quarter of a century
and more ago, than Colonel Dick Wintersmith of Kentucky.  He had
creditably filled important positions of public trust in his native
State.  His integrity was beyond question, and his popularity knew
no bounds.  Without the formality of party nomination, and with
hardly the shadow of opposition at the polls, he had held the office
of State Treasurer for nearly a score of years.  An ardent Whig in
early life, he was a devout worshipper at the shrine of Henry Clay.
In the later years of his life, he would often with the deepest
emotion refer to himself as "the last of the old guard."  He never
tired of relating interesting incidents of Mr. Clay.  It was his
glory that he had accompanied "the great pacificator" to Washington,
when, with the fond hope of being able by his historic "compromise"
to pour oil on the troubled waters, he returned to the Senate
for the last time.

Wintersmith was the close friend of Theodore O'Hara, and stood
beside him when at the unveiling of the monument to the Kentuckians
who had fallen at Buena Vista he pronounced his now historic lines

  "On fame's eternal camping-ground
  Their silent tents are spread."

Colonel Wintersmith knew, as he knew his children, two generations
of the public men of Kentucky.  His memory was a marvel to all who
knew him.  He could repeat till the dawn, extracts from famous
speeches he had heard from the lips of Clay, Grundy, Marshall, and
Menifee.  More than once, I have heard him declaim the wonderful
speech of Sargent S. Prentiss delivered almost a half-century
before, in the old Harrodsburg Court-house, in defence of Wilkinson
for killing three men at the Galt House.

It is hardly necessary to say that the Colonel was the soul of
generosity.  It was a part of his living faith that--

  "Kind hearts are more than coronets."

That he was possessed in no stinted measure of wit and its kindred
quality, humor, will appear from an incident or two to be related.

The Hon. Ignatius Donnelly, member of Congress from Minnesota, had
written a book to prove that Lord Bacon was the veritable author
of the plays usually accredited to Shakespeare.  Soon after the
appearance of Donnelly's book, he met Colonel Wintersmith on
Pennsylvania Avenue.

After a cordial greeting, the Colonel remarked, "I have been reading
your book, Donnelly, and I don't believe a word of it."

"What?" inquired Donnelly, with great surprise.

"Oh, that book of yours," said the Colonel, "in which you tried to
prove that Shakespeare never wrote 'Hamlet' and 'Macbeth' and 'Lear'
and all those other plays."

"My dear sir," replied Donnelly with great earnestness, "I can
prove beyond all peradventure that Shakespeare never wrote those

"He did," replied Wintersmith, "he did write them, Donnelly, _I
saw him write three or four of them, myself."_

"Impossible!" replied Donnelly, who was as guiltless of anything
that savored of humor as the monument recently erected to the memory
of Hon. John Sherman, "impossible, Colonel, that you could have
seen Shakespeare write those plays; they were written three hundred
years ago."

"Three hundred years, three hundred years," slowly murmured the
Colonel in pathetic tone, "is it possible that is has been so long?
_Lord, how time does fly!"_

The Colonel often told the following with a gravity that gave it
at least the semblance of truth.  Many years ago, his State was
represented in part in the Upper House by a statesman who rarely, when
in good form, spoke less than an entire day.  His speeches, in
large measure, usually consisted of dull financial details,
statistics, etc.  He became in time the terror of his associates, and
the nightmare of visitors in the galleries.  His "Mr. President," was
usually the signal for a general clearing out of both Senate Chamber
and galleries.

"Upon one occasion," said Colonel Dick, "I was seated in the
last tier in the public gallery, when my Senator with books and
documents piled high about him solemnly addressed the Chair.  As
was the wont, the visitors in the gallery as one man arose to make
their exit.  With a revolver in each hand, I promptly planted myself
in front of the door, and in no uncertain tone ordered the crowd to
resume their seats, and remain quietly until the Senator from
Kentucky had concluded his remarks.  They did so and no word of
complaint reached my ears.  Hour after hour during the long summer
day the speech drew itself along.  At length as the shadows were
lengthening and the crickets began to chirp, the speech ended
and the Senator took his seat.  I promptly replaced my pistols and
motioned the visitors to move out.  They did so on excellent time.
As the last man was passing out, he quietly remarked to me, 'Mister,
that was all right, no fault to find, but _if it was to do over
again, you might shoot.'"_



During my sojourn in Washington I visited the "Louise Home," one
of the splendid charities of the late W. W. Corcoran.  Two of
the ladies I there met were Miss Graham and Miss Gilmer.  The turn
of Fortune's wheel had brought each of them from once elegant
Virginia homes to spend the evening of life in the Home which
Mr. Corcoran had so kindly and thoughtfully provided.  It was in
very truth the welcome retreat to representatives of old Southern
families who had known better days.  Here in quiet and something
of elegant leisure, the years sped by, the chief pastime recalling
events and telling over again and again the social triumphs of the
long ago.  Thus lingering in the shadows of the past, sadly
reflecting, it may be, in the silent watches, that--

  "The tender grace of a day that is dead
  Will never come back to me,"

these venerable ladies were in sad reality "only waiting till the
shadows had a little longer grown."

There was something pathetically remindful of the good old Virginia
days in the manner in which Miss Graham handed me her card and
invited me to be seated.  Looking me earnestly in the face, she
said, "Mr. Vice-President, you must have known my brother-in-law, Governor

"Do you mean Senator William B. Giles of Virginia?"  I inquired.

"Yes, yes," she said, "did you know him?"

"No, madam," I replied, "I did not; he was a member of Congress
when Washington was President; that was a little before my day.
But is it possible that you are a sister-in-law of Governor Giles?"

"Yes, sir," she answered, "he married my eldest sister and I was
in hope that you knew him."

I assured her that I had never known him personally, but that I
knew something of his history:  that he was a soldier of the
Revolution; that he began his public career with the passing of
the old Confederation and the establishment of the National Union;
that as Representative or Senator he was in Congress almost
continuously from the administration of Washington to that of
Jackson.  I then repeated to her the words Mr. Benton, his long-time
associate in the Senate, had spoken of her brother-in-law:  "Macon
was wise, Randolph brilliant, Gallatin and Madison able in argument,
but Giles was the ready champion, always ripe for the combat."  And
I told her that John Randolph, for many years his colleague, had
said:  "Giles was to our House of Representatives what Charles
James Fox was to the British House of Commons--the most accomplished
debater our country has known."

I might have said to Miss Graham, but did not, that her brother-in-law,
then a member of the House, had voted against the farewell address
of that body to President Washington upon his retirement from
the great office.  Strange indeed to our ears sound the words that
even mildly reflect upon the Father of his Country.  Of this,
however, we may be assured, that the Golden Age of our history
is but a dream; "the era of absolute good feeling,"--the era that has
not been.

  "Past and to come seem best;
  Things present, worst."

Before condemning Mr. Giles too severely the words of Edmund Burke
may well be recalled:  "Party divisions, whether upon the whole
operating for the best, are things inseparable from free Government."
Party divisions came in with our Constitution; partisan feeling
almost with our first garments.

In this connection it will be remembered that this country has
known no period of more intense and bitter party feeling than during
the administration of the immediate successor of Washington, the
period which witnessed the downfall of the Federal party, and
the rise of the party of Jefferson.  It was after the election but
before the inauguration of John Adams, that the following words
were spoken of President Washington by the brother-in-law of the
little old lady to whom I have referred:

"I must object to those parts of the address which speak of the
wisdom and firmness of the President.  I may be singular in my
ideas, but I believe his administration has neither been firm
nor wise.  I must acknowledge that I am one of those who do not
think so much of the President as some others do.  I wish that this
was the moment of his retirement.  I think that the Government
of the United States can go on without him.  What calamities would
attend the United States, and how short the duration of its
independence, if but one man could be found fitted to conduct
its administration!  Much had been said and by many people about
the President's intended retirement.  For my own part, I feel no
uncomfortable sensations about it."

As I thus recalled the man whose public life began with that of
Washington, his kinswoman at my side seemed indeed the one living bond
of connection between the present and the long past, that past
which had witnessed the Declaration of Independence, the War of
the Revolution, and the establishment of the Federal Government.

The younger, by many years, of the two ladies, was the daughter of
the Hon. Thomas W. Gilmer, a distinguished member of Congress during
the third decade of the century, later the Governor of Virginia,
and at the time of his death the Secretary of the Navy.  The mention
of his name recalls a tragic event that cast a pall over the nation
and shrouded more than one hearthstone in deepest gloom.  During
later years, the horrors of an internecine struggle that knows no
parallel, the assassination of three Presidents of the United
States, and the thousand casualties that have crowded in rapid
succession, have almost wiped from memory the incident now to be

The pride of the American Navy, the man-of-war _Princeton,_ Commodore
Stockton in command, was lying in the Potomac just below Washington,
on the morning of February 28, 1843.  The day was beautiful, and the
distinguished commander, who had known much of gallant service,
had invited more than one hundred guests to accompany him on a sail
to a point a few miles below Mount Vernon.  Among the guests
were President Tyler and two members of his Cabinet; Mr. Upshur,
Secretary of State, and Mr. Gilmer, Secretary of the Navy; the
widow of Ex-President Madison; Mr. Gardner, a prominent citizen of
New York, and his accomplished daughter; Commodore Kennan; and a
number of Senators and Representatives.  Commodore Stockton was
anxious to have his guests witness the working of the machinery of
his vessel and to observe the fire of his great gun, his especial pride.
Mr. Gardner and his daughter were guests at the Executive Mansion;
and to the latter, the President--then for many years a widower
--was especially attentive.  Officers and guests were all in the
best of sprits, and nothing seemed wanting to make the occasion
one of unalloyed pleasure.  Upon the return, and when almost directly
opposite Mount Vernon, the company were summoned by the Commodore from
the dinner table to witness the testing of the gun.  Preceded by
an officer, the guests were soon assembled in proximity to the gun.
A place at the front was reserved for the President, but just as
he was advancing, his attention was directed by his fair guest
to some object on the shore.  This for a moment arrested his
progress, and prevented his instant death, for at this critical
moment the gun exploded, causing the immediate death of more
than twenty persons, and serious injuries to many others.  Among
the injured were Senator Benton and Commodore Stockton.  The list
of the dead included Secretary of State Upshur, Secretary of the
Navy Gilmer, Commodore Kennan--one of the heroes of the second war
with Great Britain,--and Mr. Gardner, the father of the lady whose
timely interposition had caused the moment's delay which had saved
the President from the terrible fate of his associates.  Upon
the return of the _Princeton_ to Washington the dead were removed to
the Executive Mansion, and the day, so auspicious in the beginning,
ended in gloom.

Something in the way of romance is the sequel to that sad event.
A few months later Miss Gardner, the fair guest of the President
upon the ill-fated _Princeton,_ became his bride, and during the
remainder of his term of office did the honors of the Executive

The thousands of visitors who have, during the past sixty years,
passed through the spacious rooms of that Mansion, have paused
before a full-length portrait of one of the most beautiful of women.
Possibly the interest of no one who gazed upon her lovely features
was lessened when told that the portrait was that of the wife of
President Tyler, the once charming and accomplished Miss Gardner, whose
name is so closely associated with the long-ago chapter of sorrow and
of romance.

A thought pertaining to the domain of the real rather than of
the romantic is suggested by the sad accident upon the _Princeton._
But for the trifling incident which detained President Tyler from the
side of his Cabinet officers at the awful moment, the administration
of the Government would have passed to other hands.  As the law
then stood, the Speaker of the House of Representatives would have
succeeded to the Presidency; and how this might have changed the
current of our political history is a matter of at least curious

Remembering that--

  "Two stars keep not
  Their motion in one sphere,"

might not the removal of one have healed the widening breach in
the Whig party?  What might have been its effect upon the grand
Internal Improvement Scheme--the darling project of Henry Clay?
what upon the determination of the Oregon Boundary Question--whether
by diplomacy or war? and how might the destiny of the "Lone Star,"
the Republic of Texas, have been changed?  What might have been
the effect upon the political fortunes of Tyler's great antagonist,
around whom the aggressive forces of the party he had founded were
even then gathering for a life-and-death struggle against a
comparatively obscure rival in the Presidential campaign of 1844?

Trifles light as air are sometimes the pivots upon which hinge
momentous events.  The ill-timed publication of a personal
letter defeated Cass in 1848; and within our day the utterance of a
single word, unheard by the candidate to whom it was addressed,
lost the Presidency to Blaine.

The antagonism of Tyler and his adherents eliminated, it is within
the bounds of probability that Henry Clay would have triumphed
in his last struggle for the Presidency.  If so, what change might
not have been wrought in the trend of history?  Under the splendid
leadership of the "great pacificator," what might have been the
termination of vital questions even then casting their dark shadows
upon our national pathway?

With Clay at the helm, himself the incarnation of the spirit of
compromise, possibly--who can tell?--the evil days so soon to follow
might have been postponed for many generations.



It was in April, 1859, that for the first time I met Robert G.
Ingersoll.  He came over from his home in Peoria to attend the
Woodford Circuit Court.  He was then under thirty years of age, of
splendid physique, magnetic in the fullest significance of the
word, and one of the most attractive and agreeable of men.  He was
almost boyish in appearance, and hardly known beyond the limits of
the county in which he lived.  He had but recently moved to Peoria
from the southern part of the State.

To those who remember him it is hardly necessary to say that even at
that early day he gave unmistakable evidence of his marvellous
gifts.  His power over a jury was wonderful indeed; and woe betide
the counsel of but mediocre talents who had Ingersoll for an
antagonist in a closely contested case.

The old Court-house at Metamora is yet standing, a monument of the
past; the county seat removed, it has long since fallen from its
high estate.  In my boyhood, I have more than once heard Mr. Lincoln
at its bar, and later was a practitioner there myself--and State's
Attorney for the Circuit,--when Mr. Ingersoll was attendant upon
its courts.  Rarely at any time or place have words been spoken
more eloquent than fell from the lips of Lincoln and Ingersoll
in that now deserted Court-house, in the years long gone by.

The first appearance of Mr. Ingersoll in the political arena was
in the Presidential struggle of 1860.  In his later years he was
a Republican, but in the contest just mentioned he was the earnest
advocate of the election of Mr. Douglas to the Presidency and
was himself the Democratic candidate for Congress in the Peoria
District.  His competitor was Judge Kellogg, a gentleman of well-known
ability and many years' experience in Congress.  Immediately upon his
nomination, Ingersoll challenged Kellogg to a series of joint
debates.  The challenge was accepted, and the debates which followed
were a rare treat to the throngs who heard them.  The discussion
turned upon the vital issues yet pending at the outbreak of the
Civil War, issues which were to find their final determination
on the field of battle.  Possibly, with the exception of the historic
debates two years earlier, between Lincoln and Douglas, the country
has known no abler discussion of great questions.  It was then for
the first time that Ingersoll displayed the marvellous forensic
powers that at a later day--and upon a different arena--gave him
world-wide renown.

It was at a period subsequent to that just mentioned that he became
an agnostic.  I recall no expression of his during the early years
of our acquaintance that indicated a departure from the faith in
which he had been reared.  That his extreme views upon religious
subjects, and his manner, exceedingly offensive at times, of
expressing them, formed an insuperable barrier to his political
advancement, cannot be doubted.  But for his unbelief, what political
honors might have awaited him cannot certainly be known.  But
recalling the questions then under discussion, the intensity of
party feeling, and the enthusiasm that his marvellous eloquence
never failed to arouse in the thousands who hung upon his words, it
is probable that the most exalted station might have been attained.
To those familiar with the political events of that day, it is
known that the antagonism aroused by his assaults upon the citadel
of the faith sacred to the many, compassed his defeat in his
candidature in 1868 for the Governorship of Illinois.  His explanation
was, that his defeat was caused by a slight difference of
opinion between himself and some of the brethren upon the highly
exciting question of total depravity.

Some years later, the nominee of his party for the Presidency
was exceedingly obnoxious to him.  Meeting the Colonel the morning
after the adjournment of the convention I inquired, "Are you happy?"
To this he replied, that he was somewhat in the condition of a very
profane youth who had just got religion at a backwoods camp-meeting.
Soon after his conversion, the preacher, taking him affectionately by
the hand, inquired:  "My young friend, are you very happy?"  "Well,
parson," replied the only half-converted youth, "I am not damn happy,
just _happy,_ that's all."

His only brother was for many years a Representative in Congress
from Illinois.  Clark Ingersoll was himself able and eloquent, but
overshadowed by the superior gifts of his younger brother, the
subject of this sketch.  The death of the former was to Colonel
Ingersoll a sorrow which remained with him to the last.  The funeral
occurred in Washington in the summer of 1879, and of the pall-bearers
selected by Colonel Ingersoll for the last sad service to his
brother, were men well known in public life, one of whom but two
years later, while President of the United States, fell by the hand
of an assassin.

From a Washington paper of the day succeeding the funeral of Clark
Ingersoll, the following is taken:  "When Colonel Ingersoll ceased
speaking the pall-bearers, Senator Allison, Senator David Davis,
Senator Blaine, Senator Voorhees, Representatives Garfield of Ohio,
Morrison, Boyd, and Stevenson of Illinois, bore the casket to
the hearse and the lengthy _cortege_ proceeded to the Oak Hill
Cemetery where the remains were interred."

The occasion was one that will not easily pass from my memory.
There was no service whatever save the funeral oration which has
found its way into all languages.  I stood by the side of
Colonel Ingersoll near the casket during its delivery, and vividly
recall his deep emotion, and the faltering tones in which the
wondrous sentences were uttered.  It is probable that this oration
has no counterpart in literature.  It seemed in very truth the
knell of hope, the expression of a grief that could know no surcease,
the agony of a parting that could know no morrow.

In such an hour how cheerless and comfortless these words:

"Life is a narrow vale between the cold and barren peaks of two
eternities.  We strive in vain to look beyond the heights.  We cry
aloud, and the only answer is the echo of our wailing cry.

"Every life, no matter if its every hour is rich with love, and
every moment jewelled with a joy, will at its close become a tragedy
as sad and deep and dark as can be woven of the warp and woof of
mystery and death."

And yet in those other words, "But in the night of death, hope sees
a star, and listening love can hear the rustle of a wing," and,
"while on his forehead fell the golden dawning of a grander
day," there is a yearning for "the touch of a vanished hand," and a
hope that no philosophy could dispel of a reunion sometime and
somewhere with the loved and lost.

Two decades later, again "the veiled shadow stole upon the scene,"
and the sublime mystery of life and death was revealed.  The awful
question, "If a man die shall he live again?" was answered, and to
the great agnostic _all was known._



The Rev. Peter Cartwright was a noted Methodist preacher of pioneer
days in Central Illinois.  Once seen, he was a man never to be
forgotten.  He was, in the most expressive sense of the words, _sui
generis;_ a veritable product of the times in which he lived,
and the conditions under which he moved and had his being.  All in
all, his like will not appear again.  He was converted when a mere
youth at a camp-meeting in southern Kentucky; soon after, he was
licensed to preach, and became a circuit rider in that State,
and later was of the Methodist vanguard to Illinois.  It was said of
him that he was of the church _military_ as well as "the church
militant."  He was of massive build, an utter stranger to fear,
and of unquestioned honesty and sincerity.  He was gifted with
an eloquence adapted to the times in which he lived, and the
congregations to which he preached.  There would be no place for
him now, for the untutored assemblages who listened with bated
breath to his fiery appeals are of the past.

  "For, welladay!  Their day is fled,
  Old times are changed, old manners gone."

The narrative of his tough conflicts with the emissaries of Satan is
even now of the rarest reading for a summer's day or a winter's
night.  How he fought the Indians, fought the robbers, swam rivers,
and threaded the prairies, in order that he might carry the Gospel
to the remotest frontiersmen, was of thrilling interest to many of
the new generation as his own sands were running low.  He literally
took no thought of the morrow, but without staff and little even
in the way of scrip unselfishly gave the best years of a life
extending two decades beyond the time allotted, to the service
of his Master.

Until the Judgment leaves are unfolded the good which this man and
many of his co-laborers did in the new country will never be known.
A journey of days on horseback to fill an appointment, to perform a
marriage ceremony, preach a funeral sermon, or speak words of hope
and comfort to the sick or the bereaved, was part of the sum of
a life of service that knew little of rest.

There would probably be few pulpits open to Peter Cartwright in
these more cultivated times.  Old things have passed away; the
pioneer in his rough garb, with axe upon his shoulder, and rifle
in hand, is now but a tradition, while the border line of civilization
has receded westward to the ocean.

None the less, the typical minister of to-day would have had
very scant welcome in the rude pulpits of the days of which we
write.  His elegant attire, conventional manners, written sermons,
and new theology, would have been sadly out of place in the
camp-meeting times, for be it remembered that Cartwright called
things by their right names.  He gave forth no uncertain sound.
His theology was that of the Fathers.  We hear little in these
modern days of "The fire that quencheth not" and of "total depravity"
and of "the bottomless pit."  Such expressions are unfitted for ears
polite.  Higher criticism, new thought, and all kindred ideas
and suggestions,

  "Sapping a solemn creed with solemn sneer,"

were believed by Cartwright and his contemporaries to be mere
contrivances of Satan for the ensnaring of immortal souls.  His
abhorrence of all these "wiles of the devil," and his scorn for
their advocates, knew no bounds.

His preaching was of the John Wesley, George Whitefield, and Jonathan
Edwards type.  Mingled with his denunciations of sin, his
earnest exhortations to repentance, his graphic description of the
New Jerusalem, with its "streets of gold, walls of jasper, and
gates of pearl," and of the unending bliss of the redeemed, were
expressions now relegated to the limbo of the past.  Little
time, however, was wasted by the Rev. Peter in picking out soft
words for fear of giving offence.  To his impassioned soul "the
final doom of the impenitent," the "torment of the damned," and
"hell fire" itself, were veritable realities.  And so indeed, when
rolling from his tongue, did they appear, not alone to the rapt
believer, but oftentimes to the ungodly and the sinner as well.

More than one marvellous conversion under his ministration is
recorded by Brother Cartwright in the autobiography written in the
closing years of his life.  At one time in crossing a stream, he
was deeply offended by the profanity of the boatman.  The kindly
admonition and the gentle rebuke of the minister apparently added zest
and volume to the oaths of the boatman.  Suddenly seizing the
offender, the irate preacher ducked him into the river, and turned
a deaf ear to his piteous appeals for succor until the half-drowned
wretch had offered a prayer for mercy and made profuse promises of
repentance.  Hopeful conversion, and an ever-after life of Christian
humility, were the gratifying sequels to the baptism so unexpectedly

Another experience no less remarkable occurred when, during the
early years of his ministry, he was crossing the mountains on
his way to the General Conference.  At a tavern by the wayside,
where he had obtained lodging for the night, he found preparations
in progress for a ball to come off that very evening.  The protestation
of the minister against such wickedness only aroused the ire of
the landlord and his family.  The dance promptly began at the
appointed time.

  "Soft eyes looked love to eyes which spake again,
  And all went merry as a marriage-bell."

There being but a single room to the house, and a storm raging
without, the outraged and indignant minister was the unwilling
witness to the ebb and flow of this tide of ungodliness.  At length,
as partners were being chosen for the Virginia Reel, a beautiful
girl approached the solitary guest and requested his hand for
the set just forming.  The minister arose and intimated a ready
compliance with her request, at the same time assuring her that he
never entered upon any important undertaking without first invoking
God's blessing upon it; and seizing her by the hand he fell upon
his knees and with the voice of one born to be obeyed commanded
silence and began his prayer.  The dance was immediately suspended,
and a solemnity and horror, as if the presage of approaching doom,
fell upon the startled assemblage.  Above the agonizing sobs of
the lately impenitent revellers was heard, as was that of the
ancient prophet above the din of the worshippers of Baal, the voice
of the man of God in earnest appeals to the throne of grace for
mercy to these "hell-deserving sinners."

An hour passed; lamentation and groans of sin-sick soul mingled
meanwhile with the fervent exhortations and appeals of the man
of prayer.  Suddenly and in rapid succession shout after shout
of victory from redeemed souls ascended, and as if by magic the
late abode of scoffers became indeed a very Bethel.  The incidents
mentioned, and others scarcely less remarkable, will be found in Mr.
Cartwright's autobiography.  The present generation knows but little
of the old-time camp-meeting; as it existed in the days and under the
administration of Peter Cartwright and his co-laborers, it is verily
a thing of the past.

  "New occasions teach new duties;
  Time makes ancient good uncouth."

Seventy years and more ago, the country new, the population sparse,
the settlements few and far between, the camp-meeting was of yearly
and, as it was believed, of necessary occurrence.  It was, especially
with the early Methodists, a recognized instrumentality for preaching
the Gospel for the conversion of souls.

A convenient spot--usually near a spring or brook--being selected,
a rude pulpit was erected, rough seats provided, a log cabin or
two for the aged and infirm hastily constructed, and there in
the early autumn large congregations assembled for worship.  For
many miles around, and often from neighboring counties, the people
came, on horseback, in wagons, and on foot.  Each family furnished
its own tent, the needed bed-clothing, cooking utensils, and abundant
provisions for their temporary sojourn in the wilderness.  It was no
holiday occasion, no time for merry making.  It was often at
much sacrifice and discomfort that such meetings were held, and
preachers and people alike were in terrible earnest.  Rigid rules for
their government were formulated and enforced, and a proper decorum
required and observed.  Woe betide the wretch who attempted to
create disturbance, or depart from the strictest propriety of
deportment.  Not infrequently in the early camp-meetings of Kentucky
and Tennessee there were stalwart men keeping guard over these
religious gatherings, who had in their younger days hunted the
savage foe from his fastness, faced Tecumseh at Tippecanoe and the
Thames, possibly been comrades of "Old Hickory" through the Everglades
and at New Orleans.

A sufficient time being set apart for meals and the needed hours
of rest, the residue was in the main devoted to public or
private worship.  Family prayer-meetings were held in each tent at
the early dawn; public preaching by the most gifted speakers during
two hours or more of the forenoon.  After a hasty midday meal
the public services were resumed, to be followed at the appointed time
by meetings for special prayer, class meetings, and love feasts,
all conducted with the greatest possible solemnity; and the exercises,
after supper had been served and the candles lighted, concluded
for the day with an impassioned sermon from the main stand.  During
the last-mentioned service especially, the scene presented was
truly of a weird and picturesque character.  The flickering lights
of the camp, the dark forest around, the melodious concert of a
thousand voices mingling in sacred song, the awe-inspiring,
never-to-be-forgotten hymn,

  "Come, humble sinner, in whose breast
  A thousand thoughts revolve,"

the fervid exclamations as convicted sinners gathered around the
mourners' bench and the shouts of joy heard far beyond the limits of
the camp as peace found lodging in sin-distracted souls, all
impressed the memory and heart too deeply for even the flight of
years wholly to dispel.

It need hardly be added that these scenes, of which but feeble
description has been given, marked the hour of triumph of the truly
gifted of the revival preachers of camp-meeting times.  The echoes
will never awake to the sound of such eloquence again.  The orator
and the occasion here met and embraced.  In very truth, the joys
of the redeemed, and the horrors of lost souls, were depicted in
colors that only lips "touched with a live coal from the altar"
could adequately describe.  In the presence of such lurid imagery,
even the inspired revelation of the apocalyptic vision seems but
sober narrative of commonplace events.

With camp-meetings and their thrilling incidents of two generations
ago in our Western country, the name of Peter Cartwright is
inseparably associated.  He was the born leader; _par excellence,_
the unrivalled orator.  Since the passing of Whitefield and Asbury
a greater than he had not appeared.  To those who have never attended
an old-time camp-meeting the following quotation from Mr.
Cartwright's autobiography may be of interest:

"The meeting was protracted for weeks and was kept up day and night.
Thousands heard of the mighty work, and came on foot, on horseback,
and in wagons.  It was supposed that there were in attendance at
different times from twelve to twenty-five thousand.  Hundreds fell
prostrate under the mighty power of God, as men slain in battle;
and it was supposed that between one and two thousand souls were
happily and powerfully converted to God during the meetings.  It
was not unusual for as many as seven preachers to be addressing
the listening thousands at a time, from different stands.  At times,
more than a thousand persons broke out into loud shouting, all at
once, and the shouts could be heard for miles around."

Strange as the following may sound to the present generation, it
is one of the many experiences recorded by Cartwright:

"The camp-meeting was lighted up, the trumpet blown, I rose in the
stand and required every soul to leave the tents and come into the
congregation.  There was a general rush to the stand.  I requested
the brethren, if ever they prayed in their lives, to pray now.  My
voice was strong and clear, and my preaching was more of an
exhortation than anything else.  My text was:  'The gates of
hell shall not prevail.'  In about thirty minutes the power of God
fell upon the congregation in such a manner as is seldom seen; the
people fell in every direction, right and left, front and rear.
It was supposed that not less than three hundred fell like dead
men in mighty battle; and there was no need of calling mourners,
for they were strewed all over the camp ground.  Loud wailings went
up to Heaven from sinners for mercy, and a general shout from
Christians so that the noise was hear afar off."

That it was by no means an unusual occurrence for those who came
to scoff to remain to pray will appear from the same book:

"Just as I was closing up my sermon and pressing it with all the
force I could command, the power of God suddenly was displayed,
and sinners fell by scores all through the assembly.  It was supposed
that several hundred fell in five minutes; sinners turned pale;
some ran into the woods; some tried to get away, and fell in the
attempt; some shouted aloud for joy."

The horror of Brother Cartwrights for "immersionists" and Calvinists
of every degree, appears throughout his entire book.  That his
righteous soul was often sorely vexed because of them is beyond
question.  That his cup had not been drained to the dregs will
appear from a new element he encountered when sent across the Ohio
to the Scioto conference.

"It was a poor and hard circuit at that time, and the country round
was settled in an early day by a colony of Yankees.  At the time
of my appointment I had never seen a Yankee, and I had heard dismal
stories about them.  It was said they lived almost entirely on
pumpkins, molasses, fat meat, and Bohea tea; moreover that they
could not bear loud and zealous sermons, and that they had brought
on their learned preachers with them, and were always criticising us
poor backwoods preachers."

The "isms" our circuit-rider now encountered would have appalled
a less resolute man.  He seems, however, to have gotten along fairly
well except with one "female," who, from all accounts, was given
over in about equal parts to "universalism" and "predestinarianism."
This troublesome female, that he candidly admitted he had _a
hard race to keep up with,_ he has left impaled for all time as
a "thin-faced, Roman-nosed, loquacious, glib-tongued Yankee."

Something of the antagonism of the different persuasions in the
good old pioneer days, may be gathered from the tender farewell
taken by Brother Cartwright of a former associate, one Brother D.,
"who left the Methodists, joined the Free-will Baptists, left them
and joined the New Lights, and then moved to Texas, where I expect
the devil has him in safe keeping long before this time!"

It would be idle to suppose that Peter Cartwright was a mere
visionary or dreamer.  Nothing could be farther from the truth.
He was abundantly possessed with what, in Western parlance, is
known as "horse sense."  He was a student of men, and kept in close
touch with the affairs of this world.  His shrewdness, no less than
his courage, was a proverb in his day.  Upon one occasion, at
the beginning of his sermon before a large audience, he was more
than once interrupted by the persistent but ineffectual attempt of
a saintly old sister to shout.  Annoyed at length, turning to her he
said:  "Dear sister, never shout as a matter of duty; when you
can't help it, then shout; _but never shout as a mere matter of

At a camp-meeting on the banks of the Cumberland in the early years
of the last century, an attempt was made by a band of desperadoes to
create a disturbance.  To this end their leader, a burly ruffian, stalked
to the front of the pulpit, and with an oath commanded Cartwright to
"dry up."  Suspending divine service for a few minutes, and laying
aside his coat, the preacher descended from the pulpit and springing
upon the intruder, felled him to the earth and belabored him until
the wretch begged for mercy.  The precious boon was withheld until
the now penitent disturber, after promising to repent, had been
given the humblest seat in the "amen corner."  This all satisfactorily
completed, and his garment replaced, the minister, scarcely ruffled
by the trifling incident, re-entered the pulpit, and with the words,
"As I was saying, brethren, when interrupted," continued his

This little sketch would be unpardonably incomplete if the important
fact were withheld that Peter Cartwright had a relish for politics,
as well as for salvation.  He was more than once a member of the
General Assembly of Illinois, and be it said to his eternal honor his
speech and vote were ever on the side of whatever conduced to
the best interests of the State.  In him the cause of education,
and the asylums for the unfortunate, had ever an earnest advocate.

Though many years his senior, he was the contemporary of Abraham
Lincoln, and a resident of the same county.  Mr. Lincoln was, in
1846, the Whig candidate for Representative in Congress.  The
district was of immense area, embracing many counties of Central
Illinois.  Newspapers were scarce, and the old-time custom of joint
discussions between opposing candidates for high office were still
in vogue.  Mr. Lincoln's unsuccessful competitor was none other
than the subject of this article.  The great Whig leader and his
Democratic antagonist--"My friend the Parson," as Mr. Lincoln
familiarly called him--were soon engaged in joint debate.  It is
to be regretted that there is no record of these debates.  There
is probably no man now living who heard them.  But what rare reading
they would be at this day, if happily they had been preserved.
The earnest, inflexible parson,--even then "standing upon the
Western slope,"--backed by his party, then dominant in the national
government, upon the one side; the comparatively youthful lawyer, whose
fame was yet to fill the world, upon the other.  No doubt, daily
upon "the stump" and at night at the village taverns, the changes
were rung upon the then all-absorbing subjects, the Walker Tariff,
the War with Mexico, and the Wilmot Proviso.  These questions belong
now to the domain of history; as do indeed issues of far greater
consequence, upon which Lincoln and an antagonist more formidable than
Cartwright crossed swords a dozen years later.

At the Democratic State Convention, which assembled in Springfield
in the early spring of 1860, a resolution instructing the Illinois
delegates to support Stephen A. Douglas for nomination to the
Presidency at the approaching National Convention was adopted amidst
great enthusiasm.  Immediately upon its adoption, a delegate called
attention to the fact that the venerable Peter Cartwright was
present, and said he knew the Convention would be glad to hear a
word from him.  Immediately "Cartwright," "Cartwright," "Cartwright,"
was heard from all parts of the chamber.  From his seat, surrounded
by the Sangamon County delegates, near the central part of the
hall, Mr. Cartwright arose, and with deep emotion, and scarcely
audible voice, began:

"My friends and fellow-citizens, I am happy to be with you on
the present occasion.  My sun is low down upon the horizon, and
the days of my pilgrimage are almost numbered.  I have lived in
Illinois during the entire period of its history as a State.  I
have watched with tender interest its marvellous growth from its
feeble condition as a Territory, until it has reached its
present splendor as a State.  I have travelled over its prairies,
slept with only the canopy of heaven for a covering; I have followed
the trail of the Indians, fought the desperadoes, swam the rivers,
threaded the almost pathless forests, in order that I might carry the
tidings of the blessed Gospel to the loneliest cabin upon the
border.  Yes, my friends, for seventy long years, amid appalling
difficulties and dangers, I have waged an incessant warfare against
the world, the flesh, the devil, _and all the other enemies of the
Democratic party!"_



Upon the adjournment of the Democratic National Convention of 1884,
which had nominated Mr. Cleveland for the Presidency, in company
with other delegates I visited him at the Executive Mansion at
Albany, New York.  The Hon. William F. Vilas was the chairman of
our committee, and the purpose of the visit to notify Mr. Cleveland,
officially, of his nomination to the great office.  I saw him then
for the first time.

He was then Governor of New York, having been but recently elected
by an unprecedented majority.  I recall him distinctly on this
occasion as he responded to the eloquent speech of Colonel Vilas.
Standing near him at the time were three men well known at a later
date as members of his cabinet and his closest friends, Daniel
Manning, William C. Whitney, and Daniel S. Lamont.

Cleveland's response to the speech of notification was in dignified,
forceful phrase, and at once challenged public attention and gave the
keynote to the memorable contest which immediately followed.  In
some of its aspects it was a Presidential struggle the like of
which we may not again witness.  As the day of election drew near,
the excitement increased in intensity, and no efforts that gave
hopes of success were spared by the opposing party managers.

The defection from his ranks by what in campaign publications of
the day was known as the "mugwump" element, caused Mr. Blaine to
venture upon a hazardous tour of speech-making.  Enthusiastic
audiences gathered around the brilliant Republican candidate during
his Western tour.  This, however, as the sequel showed, was time
and energy wasted; Illinois and Ohio were safely in the Republican
column, and the real battle-ground was New York state.  Homeward
bound at length from this strenuous pilgrimage demanded by no party
necessity, Mr. Blaine was fated during his brief sojourn in New
York to listen to the now historical words of Burchard, words which
in all human probability proved the political undoing of the
candidate to whom, with the best intentions, they were earnestly

New York, as has been its wont before and since, proved the pivotal
State.  For many days after the election the result was still in
doubt.  Party feeling was intense, and the result hinged upon
the narrow margin in the vote of Blaine and Cleveland in one State.

During the strenuous days that passed from the election until
the authoritative announcement of the result, one man alone, amid the
high tide of party passion, remained calm.  To all appearances
unmoved, Grover Cleveland sat in his office day after day, no detail
of official duty failing to receive his careful attention.  The
fact just stated is explanatory of much in his subsequent career.

When first nominated for the Presidency, Mr. Cleveland had
little personal knowledge of public men outside of his own State.
How rapidly he acquired the information necessary to a successful
administration of the government was indeed a marvel.  It was no
"Cleveland luck" or haphazard chance that called into his first Cabinet
such men as Bayard, Manning, Garland, Vilas, and Whitney.  It can safely
be asserted that Mr. Cleveland was an excellent judge of men and of
their capacity for the particular work assigned them.  As if by
intuition, he thoroughly understood after a single interview the men
with whom he was brought in contact.  As an object lesson a better
appointment to high office has rarely been made than that of Fuller
to the chief justiceship of the great court.  No less fortunate was
his selection of Vilas to the responsible position of Postmaster-General.
And yet both of these gentlemen were personally strangers to Mr. Cleveland
when he was first named for the Presidency.  His appointments to important
diplomatic positions likewise strikingly illustrated his aptness
in forming a correct estimate of men from whom his appointees were
to be chosen.

No incumbent of the Presidency was ever less of a time-server than
Cleveland.  "Expediency" was a word scarcely known to his vocabulary.
Recognizing alike the dignity and responsibility of the great
office, he was in the highest degree self-reliant.  None the less he
at all times availed himself of the wise counsel of his official
advisers.  In matters falling within their especial province their
determination was, except in rare instances, conclusive.  In no
sense was his mind closed against the timely counsel of his friends.
Far from being opinionated, in the offensive sense of the word, the
ultimate determination, however, was after "having taken counsel
from himself."

The incident contributing perhaps more than any other to his defeat
in 1888 was his tariff-reduction message to Congress one year prior
to that election.  An abler state paper has rarely been put forth.
It was a clear, succinct presentation of existing economic conditions;
in very truth an unanswerable argument for tariff reduction.  It
is not yet forgotten how promptly this message was denounced by
the entire opposition press as a "free-trade manifesto," and how
this cry increased in voice and volume until the close of the
Presidential contest.  And yet, in sending this message to Congress,
Mr. Cleveland was entirely consistent with himself.  Its utterances
were in clear accord with the platform upon which he had been
nominated and with his letter of acceptance.  It is one of the
anomalies of politics that the clear-cut sentences measurably
instrumental in compassing his defeat in 1888, were upon the banners
of his triumphant partisans in the campaign of 1892.

In the year last named, Mr. Cleveland was for the third time the
candidate of his party for the Presidency.  His nomination, by a
two-thirds vote, was upon the first ballot, and marked an era in
the history of national conventions.  His candidacy was bitterly
antagonized by the delegation from his own State, his name being
presented by Governor Abbott of New Jersey.  It is a fact of
much significance that neither in the platform upon which he was
nominated, nor in the letter of acceptance, was there the slightest
departure from his emphatic utterances upon the tariff in the
memorable message of 1887.  The salient issues of the campaign were
"tariff reform" and hostility to the then pending "Force bill."
From first to last Mr. Cleveland was in close consultation with
the leaders of his party and advised as to every detail of the
contest.  The result was a vindication of his former administration
and an unmistakable endorsement of the tenets of the Democratic

In this brief sketch, there can be but slight reference to the
important questions which now for four years engaged his attention.
Almost his first official act after his second inauguration was
the withdrawal from the Senate of the Hawaiian Annexation Treaty
recently submitted by President Harrison for ratification.  Firmly
believing that the late United States Minister to the unfortunate island
had at least acquiesced in the overthrow of the Hawaiian Government,
President Cleveland, with the hope that he might measurably repair
the wrong, recalled the Annexation Treaty, as stated.  In his
message of withdrawal were the words:  "A great wrong has been done
to a feeble and independent State."  This almost forgotten incident
is now recalled only to emphasize the spirit of justice that
characterized his dealings with foreign Governments.

And yet history will truly say of him that, while just to other
Governments, no President has more firmly maintained the rights of
his own.  This assertion finds verification in the Venezuelan
message, which, for the moment, almost startled the country.  By
many it was for the time believed to be the prelude to war.  In
very truth, as the sequel proved, it was a message of peace.  It
was a critical moment, and the necessity imperative for prompt,
decisive action.  If the Monroe Doctrine was to be maintained,
Great Britain could not be permitted arbitrarily to divest Venezuela
of any portion of her territory.  The arbitration proposed by
President Cleveland, resulting in peaceable adjustment, established
what we may well believe will prove an enduring precedent.  One
sentence of the memorable message is worthy of remembrance by
the oncoming generations:  "The Monroe Doctrine was intended to
apply to every stage of our national life, and cannot become obsolete
while our Republic endures."

I had excellent opportunities to know Mr. Cleveland.  I was a member
of the first and third conventions which named him for the Presidency,
and actively engaged in both the contests that resulted in his
election.  As assistant Postmaster-General during his first term, and
Vice-President during the second, I was often "the neighbor to his
counsels."  I am confident that a more conscientious, painstaking official
never filled public station.  In his appointments to office his
chief aim was to subserve the public interests by judicious
selections.  The question of rewarding party service, while by no
means ignored, was immeasurably subordinate to that of the integrity
and efficiency of the applicant.  He was patriotic to the core,
and it was his earnest desire that the last vestige of legislation
inimical to the Southern States should pass from the statute books.
He did much toward the restoration of complete concord between all
sections of the country.

Mr. Cleveland possessed a kind heart, and was ever just and generous
in his dealings.  Wholly unostentatious himself, the humblest felt
at ease in his presence.  Possibly no incumbent of the great office
was more easily accessible to all classes and conditions.  Courteous
at all times, no guards were necessary to the preservation of
his dignity.  No one would have thought of an undue familiarity.

He was a profound student of all that pertained to human affairs.
He had given deep thought to the science of government, and was
familiar with the best that had been written on the subject.  Caring
little for the light literature of the day, his concern was with
the practical knowledge bearing upon existing conditions and
that might aid in the solution of the ever-recurring problems
confronting men in responsible positions.  He loved to talk of the
founders of the Government, and of the matchless instrument, the
result of their wise deliberations, declared by Gladstone, "the
most wonderful work ever struck off at a given time from the brain
and purpose of man."  The Constitution was in very truth "the man of
his counsel," and, in my opinion, no statesman in ancient or modern
times so challenged his profound admiration as did James Madison.

Mr. Cleveland was sociable in the best sense of that word, and the
cares of state laid aside, in the company of friends he was an
exceedingly agreeable companion.  While by no means the best of
story-tellers himself, he had a keen appreciation of the humorous and
ludicrous phases and incidents of life.  I shall not soon forget
an evening I spent with him in company with Governor Proctor Knott
of Kentucky.  The greatest story-teller of the age was at his best,
and the delight of the occasion was, as Cleveland declared, "beyond

More than once I have been a guest in his home.  During the campaign
of 1892, when his associate on the national ticket, I spent some
days in conference with him at Gray Gables.  The memory of that
long-ago visit lingers yet.  He was the agreeable host, the gentleman;
more than that, the tender, considerate husband, the kind, affectionate
father.  It has never been my good fortune to cross the threshold of
a more delightful home.

I saw Mr. Cleveland last upon the occasion of his visit to Arbor
Lodge, Nebraska, to deliver an address at the unveiling of a statue
of the late Sterling Morton, former Secretary of Agriculture.  The
address was worthy of the occasion, and indeed a just and touching
tribute to the memory of an excellent man, an able and efficient Cabinet
Minister.  In my last conversation with Mr. Cleveland upon the
occasion mentioned, he spoke feelingly of our old associates, many
of whom had passed away.  I remember that the tears came to his
eyes when the name of Colonel Lamont happened to be mentioned.

During our stay at Arbor Lodge, the beautiful Morton home, by
invitation of the superintendent, Mr. Cleveland visited the
State Asylum for the Blind at Nebraska City.  In his brief address
to the unfortunate inmates of the institution, Mr. Cleveland
mentioned the fact that in his early life he had been for some time
a teacher in an asylum for the blind, and spoke of his profound
interest in whatever concerned their welfare.  I have heard him
many times, but never when he appeared to better advantage, or
evinced such depth of feeling as upon this occasion.

The passing of Cleveland marks an epoch.  He was indeed a striking
figure in American history.  Take him all in all, we may not
look upon his like again.  The "good citizenship," an expression
frequently on his lips, to which he would have his countrymen
aspire, was of the noblest, and no man had a clearer or loftier
conception of the responsible and sacred character of public station.
With him the oft-quoted words, "A public office is a public trust,"
was no mere lip-service.  His will be a large place in history.  His
administration of the government will safely endure the test of

  "Whatever record leaps to light,
  He never can be shamed."

In victory or defeat, in office or out, he was true to his own self
and to his ideals.  His early struggles, his firmness of purpose, his
determination that knew no shadow of wavering, his exalted aims,
and the success that ultimately crowned his efforts have given him
high place among statesmen, and will be a continuing inspiration
to the oncoming generations of his countrymen.



At a banquet in Washington in the winter of 1880-81, a large number
of Representatives were present.  Among the number were Reed,
McKinley, Cannon, and Keifer.  These gentlemen were all prospective
candidates for the Speakership of the then recently elected House of
Representatives.  The best of feeling prevailed, and the occasion
was one of rare enjoyment and mirth.  Each candidate in turn was
introduced by the toast-master as "the Speaker of the next House,"
and in his speech each claimed all the others as his enthusiastic and
reliable supporters.  The apparent confidence of each candidate in
the support of his rivals reminded Mr. Cannon of the experience of
an Illinois legislator, which he requested his colleague from
the Bloomington district to relate.

That the reader may appreciate the incident then related, some
mention must be made of Dr. Thomas P. Rogers of Bloomington.  He
was a gentleman of the old school, a politician from the beginning,
of inflexible integrity and an earnestness of purpose that knew no
shadow of turning.  He was as devoid of any possible touch of humor
as was his own marble bust of Thomas Jefferson.  He was the personal
friend of Lincoln and of Douglas, and the political follower of
the latter.  The fondness of a mother for her first-born hardly
exceeded that of Dr. Rogers for the party of his choice.  Any
uncomplimentary allusion to his "principles" was considered a
personal injury, and his devotion to party leaders, from Jackson
to Douglas, savored of idolatry.  Some camp-meeting experiences in
early life had given zest and tone to his style of oratory,
which stood him well in hand in his many political encounters of
a later day.

For three consecutive terms the Doctor had been a member of the
Legislature, and his record from every point of view was without
a blemish.  At his fourth election, it was found that for the first
time in a decade or more his party had secured a majority in the
House, to which the Doctor had just been elected.  The goal of his
ambition was the Speakership, and it truly seemed that his hour
had now come.

Soon after these facts were known beyond peradventure, the Doctor came
one day into my office.  After election matters had been talked
over at length and with much satisfaction, the Doctor modestly
intimated a desire to be a candidate for the Speakership.  I at
once gave him the promise of my earnest support and inquired whether
he had any friends upon whom he could rely in the approaching
caucus.  He assured me that there were four members of the last
House re-elected to this, upon whom he knew he could absolutely
depend under all circumstances.  Upon my inquiry as to their names,
he said:

"Hadlai,"--the Doctor, it may be here mentioned, had from my boyhood
kindly given me the benefit of an "H" to which I laid no claim and
was in no way entitled--"Hadlai, you take your pencil and take down
their names as I give them to you."

I at once took my seat, and pencil in hand, looked inquiringly
toward the Doctor.

"Hadlai," he continued, "put down Heise of Cook.  John and I
have been friends for more than thirty years; I worked for him for
a delegate-at-large to the last National Convention, and he told
me then, 'Doctor, if there is anything I can do for you, just let me

To which I replied, "Heise of Cook, dead sure," and his name was
at once placed in the Rogers column.

"Now, Hadlai," continued the Doctor, "there is Armstrong of La
Salle; Wash and I were boys together in Ohio, and sat side by side
in the Charleston Convention when we were trying to nominate Douglas.
He has told me more than once that if ever we carried the House,
he was for me for Speaker above any man on earth."  At which I
unhesitatingly placed Armstrong of La Salle in the same column with
Heise of Cook.

"Now, Hadlai," continued the Doctor, after a moment's pause, "there
is Cummins of Fulton; I helped elect Jim Chairman of the last State
Convention, and he has told me again and again that he hoped he
would live to see me Speaker, so I can count on Jim without doubt."

I at once placed Cummins in the column of honor with Heise and
Armstrong, and calmly awaited further instructions.

"Now, Hadlai, there is Moore of Adams; Alf got into trouble over
a bill he had in the last Legislature; he could neither get it out
of the committee, nor the committee to take any action, so he came
over to my seat terribly worried, and says he, 'Doctor, for
God's sake, get me out of this!'  I did, Hadlai, and Alf was the
most grateful man you ever saw on earth, and told me then, 'Doctor,
I would get up at two o'clock at night to do you a favor.'  I
can safely count on him."

It is needless to say that Moore of Adams rounded out the quartette
of faithful supporters.

"Now, Hadlai," remarked the Doctor, after contemplating with apparent
satisfaction the list I had handed him, "if you will give me
some paper and envelopes and a pen and some stamps, if you have
them handy, I will write to all of them now."  The articles mentioned
were produced, the letters written, stamped, and duly mailed, and
the good Doctor departed in an exceedingly comfortable frame of

Time passes, as is its wont; but for some weeks I neither saw
nor heard from the Doctor.  Meeting him on the street at length,
I at once inquired whether he had received replies to his letters.

"Come into the office, Hadlai, and I will explain."  Pained to
observe that the tone and air of confidence so perceptible in
our last interview was lacking, I followed with some misgiving into
his office.

"Yes, Hadlai," he slowly began, "I have heard from all of them.
Heise of Cook [the familiar appellations of the former interview
were wanting] writes assuring me that there is no man living for
whom he entertains a more profound respect then for myself, Hadlai;
but that owing to unforseen complications arising in his county,
he has reluctantly consented _to allow his own name_ to be presented
to the caucus."

The name of Heise of Cook was immediately stricken from the head
of the list.  Then a reverie into which the Doctor had fallen was at
length disturbed by my inquiry, "What about Armstrong?"

"Yes, Hadlai, Armstrong of La Salle writes me that in his judgment
there is no man living so deserving of the gratitude of the party,
or so well qualified for the office of Speaker as myself, but that
the pressure from his constituents has been so great that he has
_finally consented to allow his own name_ to be presented to the

"Fare-you-well, Mr. Armstrong," was my hurried observation, as the
name of that gentleman disappeared from my list.

Arousing the Doctor at length from the reverie into which he had
again fallen, I ventured to inquire as to the state of mind of Mr.

"Yes, Hadlai, Cummins of Fulton says that in a certain contingency
_he will himself be a candidate,_ and Moore of Adams writes me that
_he is a candidate!"_

It may not be out of place to supplement this little narrative
by relating an incident that illustrates the fact that a man wholly
devoid of any sense of humor himself may at times be the unconscious
cause of amusement in others.

Imprimis:  The Doctor, while a member of the General Assembly,
voted for a measure known in local parlance as "the Lake Front
Bill."  The criticisms which followed vexed his righteous soul,
and he patiently awaited the opportunity for public explanation
and personal vindication.

Now it so fell out that at the time whereof we write there was much
excitement--a tempest in a tea-pot--in the little city of Bloomington,
over a change in "readers" recently ordered in the schools by
the Board of Education.  After much discussion on the streets and at
the corners, a public indignation meeting was called for Saturday evening
at the east door of the Court-house.  Meanwhile the indignation
against the offending Board intensified, and there was some
apprehension even of serious trouble.  At the appointed time and
place, the meeting assembled and was duly organized by the selection
of a Chairman.  Calls at once began for well-known orators at
the bar and upon the hustings.  "Ewing," "Fifer," "Rowell," "Prince,"
"Lillard," "Phillips," "Kerrick," "Weldon," were heard from the
crowd in rapid succession.  It was like "calling spirits from
the vasty deep."  No response was given, no orator appeared; and, as
is well known, an indignation meeting without an orator is as
impossible as "Hamlet" with the Prince of Denmark omitted.

But sure enough--

  "Fortune sometimes brings in boats that are not steered."

At the auspicious moment, from the rear of the crowd Tom Hullinger
called out, "Doctor Rogers, Doctor Rogers!"  The hour had struck.
Without waiting further call, the Doctor promptly took the stand
and waiving the formality of an introduction, began:

"I am deeply gratified to have this opportunity to explain to my
fellow-citizens who have known me from my early manhood my vote
upon the Lake Front Bill," _and a two-hour vindication immediately
followed._  No allusion being made to the object of the meeting,
or the change of school-books, of which the Doctor knew as little and
cared as little as he did of the thirteenth century controversy
between the Guelphs and the Ghibellines, with the waning hours the
excitement subsided.  The change of readers became a dead issue;
the era of good feeling was restored; and to this blessed hour,
except in a spirit of mirth, _the school-book question has never
been mentioned._



In the old Supreme Court-room at Ottawa, almost a half-century ago,
I saw and heard Judge Alfred A. Arrington for the first time.  For
two hours I listened with the deepest attention to his masterly
argument in a cause then exciting much interest because of the
large amount involved.  The dry question of law under discussion, "as
if touched by the enchanter's wand," was at once invested with
an interest far beyond its wont.  As I listened to the argument of
Judge Arrington, and witnessed the manner of its delivery, he
appeared in the most comprehensive sense the ideal lawyer.  He
seemed, indeed, as he probably was, the sole survivor of the school
of which Wirt and Pinckney were three generations ago the
typical representatives.  His dignified bearing, old-time apparel,
and lofty courtesy toward the Court and opposing counsel, all
strengthened this impression.  He had a highly attractive appearance,
and as was said by a contemporary, "to crown all, a massive
Websterian forehead, needing no seal to give the world assurance of
a man."

  "Sage he stood,
  With Atlantean shoulders, fit to bear
  The weight of mightiest monarchies; his look
  Drew audience and attention still as night
  Or summer's noontide air."

Since then I have listened to advocates of national renown in
our great court and in the Senate sitting as a High Court of
Impeachment, but at no time or place have I heard an abler, more
scholarly, or more eloquent argument than that of Judge Arrington in
the old court-room at Ottawa, Illinois, on that day long gone by.

The most eminent members of the Chicago bar were the eulogists
of Judge Arrington when he passed to his grave, near the close
of the great Civil War.  Judge Wilson, in presenting resolutions
in honor of the deceased, voiced the sentiments of his associates when
he said:

"For more than thirty years at the bar and upon the bench, I
have been associated with the legal profession; and I may say
without offence that of the many able men I have known I regard
Judge Arrington, take him all in all, as the ablest."

The venerable Judge Drummond said:

"I have rarely heard a man whose efforts so constantly riveted the
attention from the beginning to the close of his discourse.  For
while he trod with firm and steady steps the path of logic, his
vivid imagination was constantly scattering on each side flowers
of fragrant beauty, to the wonder and delight of all who heard him.
He was a great lawyer in the highest and largest sense of the term
--great in the extent and thoroughness of his legal learning, in
the vigor and acuteness of his reasoning, and in the power of
his eloquence."

The Hon. Melville W. Fuller, the present Chief Justice of the United
States, said:

"When he arose to discuss a question, he exhibited a perfect
knowledge of every phase in which it could be presented; and men
never grew weary (especially if the argument involved Constitutional
construction, in which department he stood _primus inter illustres_)
of admiring the amplitude of his legal attainments, the accuracy
of his learning, the compactness of his logic, and the majestic
flow of his eloquence, and more than all, that firmness and breadth
of mind which lifted him above the ordinary contest of the forum.

"It is a source of the deepest consolation that he found peace
at the last; that the grand spirit, before it took its everlasting
flight, reposed in confidence on the Book of Books; that its
departure was illumined by that precious light which ever
renders radiant the brief darkness 'twixt mortal twilight and
immortal dawn."

And yet, alas, his name has now almost passed from the memories of
men; the veil of time has settled over him; no distinct image is
recalled by the mention of his name.  How suggestive this, of
the ephemeral fame of even a great lawyer:

  "Swift as shadow, short as any dream
  Brief as the lightning in the collied night."

Words long since uttered by an eminent jurist have not lost
their significance:

"There is, perhaps, no reputation that can be achieved amongst men
that is so transitory, so evanescent, as that of a great advocate.
The very wand that enchants us is magical.  Its effects can be
felt; it influences our actions; it controls and possesses us; but
to define it, or tell what it is, or how it produces these effects,
is as far beyond our power as to imprison the sunbeam.  In the
presence of such majestic power we can only stand awed and silent."

There was much of romance, and somewhat of mystery, that gathered about
the life of Judge Arrington.  Born of humble parentage in the pine
forests of North Carolina, with no advantages other than those
common in the remoter parts of our country a century ago, from the
beginning he apparently dwelt apart from the conditions surrounding
him.  At an early age he removed with his father's family to the
then wilds of the Southwest.

There, upon the very border line of civilization, his associates
for a time were the advance guard, the adventurers and soldiers of
fortune that in a large measure constituted the civilization of
the southwestern frontier during the early years of the last century.
With his early environment, his subsequent career seems a marvel.
It can only be explained upon the supposition that through with
them, he was not of them.

  "His soul was like a star, and dwelt apart."

His companions were his books.  Denied the advantages of early
scholastic training, he was, from the beginning, an omnivorous
reader.  He cared little for the allurements and excitement of
society.  At the age of seventeen, he joined the Methodist Episcopal
Church, and was soon after licensed to preach.  For four years
he rode the circuit, enduring all the discomforts and dangers then
and there incident to his calling.  His field may be called the
_Ultima Thule,_ bordering upon the Rio Grande and inhabited by
Indians.  Untutored audiences were stirred to the depths by his
fervid appeals.  Church buildings were yet in the future; the
congregations assembled in God's first temples, and listened
with rapt attention to the fiery eloquence of the delicate, youthful
messenger, whose soul seemed on fire.

A gentleman who had heard Arrington writes:

"He was then young, delicate, as brilliant as a comet, and almost as
erratic.  Without research or mental discipline, he could electrify
an audience beyond all living men, and arouse in the minds of those
who heard him the wildest enthusiasm."

For some cause, possibly never to be explained, he suddenly abandoned
the ministry, began the study of the law, and when a little past
the age of twenty-one, was admitted to the bar.  After some years of
successful practice in the rude frontier courts of Arkansas, he
removed to Texas, where he was soon appointed a judge, and assigned
to the Rio Grande circuit.  In addition to his judicial labors, he
now wrote and published some graphic and interesting sketches of
border life, vivid pictures of conditions then existing in the
Southwest among a people the like of which we shall not see agin,
a people upon whom the restraints and amenities of civilized life sat
but lightly, who were in large degree a law unto themselves, and
with whom revenge was virtue.

One of his publications, "Paul Denton," still has a place in many of
our libraries.  It is, in part, a narrative of the thrilling
experiences of an early Methodist circuit-rider--presumably himself
--upon the southwest border.  In this will be found his marvellous
apostrophe to water, which, as was said by Judge Dent, "was so
familiar to the lecture-going public of the last generation owing to
its frequent declamation from the rostrum by the temperance lecturer,

The hero of the book, Paul Denton, had been announced to preach at
a famous Spring, where "plenty of good liquor" was promised to all
who would attend.  During the sermon, a desperado demanded:
"Mr. Denton, where is the liquor you promised?"

"There!" answered the preacher in tones of thunder, and pointing
his motionless finger at a spring gushing up in two strong columns
from the bosom of the earth with a sound like a shout of joy.
"There," he repeated, "there is the liquor which God the Eternal
brews for all his children.  Not in the simmering still over the
smoky fires choked with poisonous gases, surrounded with stench of
sickening odors and corruptions, doth your Father in heaven prepare
the precious essence of life--pure cold water; but in the green
glade and grassy dell, where the red-deer wanders and the child
loves to play, there God brews it; and down, low down, in the
deepest valleys, where the fountains murmur, and the rills sigh, and
high upon the mountain-tops where the naked granite glitters
like gold in the sun, where the storm-cloud broods and the
thunder-storms crash; and far out on the wide, wild sea, where the
hurricane howls music and the big waves roll the chorus, sweeping the
march of God--there he brews it, the beverage of life, health-giving

"And everywhere it is a thing of life and beauty--gleaming in
the dew-drop; singing in the summer rain; shining in the ice gem
till the trees all seem turned to living jewels; spreading a golden
veil over the sun or a white gauze around the midnight moon; sporting
in the glacier; folding its bright snow-curtain softly about the
wintry world; and weaving the many-colored bow whose warp is the
rain-drops of earth, whose woof is the sunbeam of heaven, all
checkered over with the mystic hand of refraction.

"Still it is beautiful, that blessed life-water!  No poisonous
bubbles are on its brink; its foam brings not murder and madness;
no blood stains its liquid glass; pale widows and starving orphans
weep not burning tears into its depths; no drunkard's shrieking
ghost from the grave curses it in the world of eternal despair.
Beautiful, pure, blessed, and glorious.  Speak out, my friends,
would you exchange it for the demon's drink, alcohol?"

In Calvary Cemetery, Chicago, rests all that is mortal of Judge

  "Tread lightly on his ashes, ye men of genius, for
  he was your kinsman!
  Weed clean his grave, ye men of goodness, for
  he was your brother!"



One of the men not easily forgotten was the Hon. Frank Woolford,
a member of Congress from the mountains of Kentucky nearly a quarter
of a century ago.  He was without reservation a typical mountaineer.
He practised law in the local courts, and was prominent in the
politics of his State.  His style of oratory bore little resemblance
to that of the British House of Lords.  He had been a soldier in two
wars, and his dauntless courage and inexhaustible good humor made him
the idol of his comrades.  He had been of the heroic band of
"Old Rough and Ready" that repelled the charge of twenty thousand lancers
under Santa Ana at Buena Vista.  He was as brave as Marshal Ney,
and it was said of him that the battle-field was his home as the
upper air was that of the eagle.

He promptly espoused the cause of the Union at the outbreak of the
Civil War and was chosen Colonel of a mounted regiment gathered
from his own and adjacent counties.  He knew how to fight, but
of the science of war as taught in the schools he was as ignorant as
the grave.  It was said that his entire tactics were embraced in
two commands:  "Huddle and fight," and "Scatter."  When the
first was heard his men "huddled and fit"; and when retreat was the
only possible salvation, the command to "scatter" was obeyed
with equal alacrity.  Each man was now for himself, and "devil take
the hindmost" for a time, but the sound of Woolford's bugle
never failed to secure prompt falling into line at the auspicious moment.
"Woolford's cavalry" was the synonym for daring, even at the
time when the recital of the deeds of brave men filled the world's
great ear.

Woolford and his troopers were in the thickest of the fight at Mill
Spring, where Zollicoffer fell; later, they hung upon the flanks
of Bragg on his retreat southward from the bloody field of Perryville.
More than once during those troublous times our hero was a "foeman
worthy the steel" of John Morgan, Forrest, and the gallant Joe
Wheeler of world renown.

At the close of the war, Colonel Woolford returned to his mountain
home and was in due time elected a Representative in Congress.
Years later, with life well rounded out, he met the only foe to
whom he ever surrendered, and lamented by all, passed to the beyond.

Some faint idea of Colonel Woolford's style of eloquence at the
bar may possibly be gathered from the following.  He was retained to
defend a half-grown, illiterate youth under indictment for murder.
The crime was committed near "Jimtown," but by a change of venue
the trial took place at Danville, in the neighboring county of
Boyle.  Danville, it must be remembered, was the Athens of Kentucky.
It was the seat of Centre College, of a Presbyterian theological
Seminary, and of more than one of the public institutions of the
State.  It was the home of men of prominence and wealth, and for
three generations had been renowned for the high character,
attainments, and culture of its people.

In his speech to the jury in behalf of his unfortunate client, the
Colonel insisted that the poor boy at the bar of justice, born and
reared in the mountains, without any of the advantages of churches
and schools, was not to be held in the same degree responsible
as if his lot had been cast in Danville.  In his argument he said:

"Here you have your schools, your Centre College, your Theological
Seminary, your churches.  Every third man you meet on the streets is
a minister of the Gospel, and the others are all teachers in the
Sunday school.  Here you have your great preachers, Young,
Green, Humphreys, Yerkes, Robertson, Breckenridge--in fact,
Presbyterianism to your hearts' content in the very air.  But this
poor boy has known nothing of these things.  O gentlemen, what
might not this poor boy have been, and what might not poor Jimtown
have been, with all these advantages?"

Throwing up his arms, in tragic tones he exclaimed:

"Oh, Jimtown!  Jimtown!  Had the mighty things that have been done
in Danville been done in thee, thou wouldst long since have repented
in sackcloth and ashes!"

The incident which I shall now relate was told me by my kinsman,
General S. S. Fry of Danville.  He and Colonel Woolford were friends
from boyhood, and comrades in the Mexican and Civil wars.  Their
party affiliations, however, were different, General Fry being a
Republican, and Colonel Woolford a Democrat.

During the reconstruction period, soon after the close of the Civil
war, a barbecue was given to the Colonel, then a candidate for
Congress, in one of the mountain counties of his district.  As a
matter of course, the Colonel was to be the orator of the occasion.

In order, if possible, to counteract the evil effect of his speech,
the Republican State Committee requested General Fry to attend the
barbecue, and engage Colonel Woolford in public debate.  In compliance
with this request, General Fry, after a horseback ride of many
hours, put in an appearance at the appointed time and place.
The attendance was general; the people of the entire county, of
both sexes and of all ages and conditions, were there.  The barbecue
was well under way when General Fry arrived.  A table of rough
boards and of sufficient length had been constructed, and was
literally covered with savory shote and mutton just from the pit
where barbecued.  These viands were abundantly supplemented with
fried chicken, salt-rising bread, beaten biscuit, "corn dodgers," and
cucumber pickles.  To this add several representatives of the highly
respectable pie family, and possibly an occasional pound cake, and
the typical barbecue is before you.

General Fry, upon his arrival, was warmly greeted by Colonel
Woolford, whose hearty invitation _to partake_ was not limited
to the viands mentioned.  The feast being at length happily concluded,
and the crowd assembled around the speaker's stand, Colonel Woolford
said to his old-time comrade;  "Now, General Fry, you just go ahead
and speak just as long as you want to.  The boys have all heard me
time and again, and I have nothing new to tell them, but they will
be glad to hear you.  When you get through, of course, if there is
a little time left, I may say 'howdy' to the boys, and talk a little
while, but you just go ahead."

After formal introduction by the Colonel, General Fry did "go
ahead," and discuss the financial question, the tariff, reconstruction,
and dwelt earnestly and at length upon the magnanimity of the
Republican party toward the men lately in rebellion against the
Government.  Since the surrender at Appomattox, no life had been
taken, no one punished, no man ever put on his trial.  It was
without a parallel in history, and as a matter of simple gratitude,
the Republican party was entitled to the support of the entire
Southern people for such magnanimity.

The speech at length concluded, Colonel Woolford arose and without
even the formality of saying "howdy," or honoring finance or tariff
with the briefest mention, proceeded:

"General Fry has dwelt long and loud upon the magnanimity of the
Republican party.  He has told you that when the war was over
and the last rebel had laid down his arms, a hand-shaking took
place all around, everybody was forgiven, and the peace of heaven came
down like a dove upon the whole Southern people.  Yes--a hell of
a magnanimity it was!  How did they show the magnanimity that
General Fry talks so much about?  You all remember Stonewall Jackson,
one of the grandest men God ever made.  This same magnanimous
Republican party took him prisoner, tried him by a drumhead
court-martial, and shot him down like a mad dog after he had
surrendered up his sword."

At which Colonel Fry interposed:

"Why, Colonel Woolford, you ought not to make such a statement
as that.  Stonewall Jackson was accidentally shot by one of his
own men in battle, and his memory is honored by all the people
North and South."

To this the Colonel replied:

"Don't try to deceive these people.  We don't put on style and wear
store clothes like you big folks down about Danville, but we live in
our plain way, wear our home-spun and eat our hog and hominy; but if
there is anything on earth that these people do love, it is the
_truth._  What did this same magnanimous Republican party that
General Fry had told you so much about do with General Robert E.
Lee?  I knew General Lee, I served with him in Mexico, and although
we fought on different sides in the last war, I always respected
him as a brave soldier.  Well, after he had surrendered at Appomattox,
and his men had all laid down their arms, what did this same
magnanimous party that General Fry talked so much about do with
General Lee?  Why, they tried him by a drumhead court-martial _and
shot and quartered him right on the spot!"_

Again interrupting, General Fry indignantly exclaimed:

"It is an outrage, Colonel Woolford, to attempt to deceive these
people by such statements.  General Lee was never even imprisoned,
and is still alive, the president of a college in Virginia, and
highly esteemed by everybody."

The Colonel answered:

"Now, General Fry, you have been treated like a gentleman ever
since you came to these mountains; we gave you the best we had
to eat, gave you the last drop out of the bottle, and listened
quietly to you just as long as you wanted to speak.  We don't wear
Sunday clothes, General Fry, like you do down in Danville, but just
live in our plain way in our log cabins, and eat our hoe-cake, and
say our prayers, but if there is anything on God's earth that we
do love, it is the _truth._  It is wrong for you, General Fry,
to try and fool these people.  Yes, this same magnanimous party
that General Fry has been telling you about, what did they do with
poor old Jeff Davis after he was captured?  Now, I never was fond of
old Jeff myself, and I fought four years against him in the last
war.  But I was on the same side with him in Mexico, I saw him head
the charge of the Mississippi rifles, and drive back the Mexican
lancers after McKee and Clay and Hardin had been killed at Buena
Vista, and I know he was no coward.  Well, after he was in prison and
as helpless as a child, what did they do with him?  Why, they just
took him out, and without even giving him a drumhead trial, tied
him up and _burned him to ashes at a stake!"_

Fry sprang to his feet, exclaiming:

"Great God!  Jeff Davis is still alive, at his home in Mississippi,
and has never even been tried; it is damnable to make such statements
to these people, Colonel Woolford!"

The Colonel thereupon, with a deeply injured air, said:

"General Fry, you and I have been friends a life-time.  We
hooked watermelons, hunted coons, and attended all the frolics
together when we were boys.  We slept under the same blanket,
belonged to the same mess, and fought side by side at Palo Alto
and Cerro Gordo; we shed our blood on the same battlefields when
fighting to save this glorious Union.  I have loved you, General
Fry, like a brother, but this is too much, it is putting friendship
to a turrible test; it is a little more than flesh and blood can

Pausing for a moment, he apparently recovered himself from the deep
emotion he had just shown, then quietly resuming, he said, "What
I have said about the way they treated old Jeff is true, and here is
my witness."  He called out, "Bill, tell the General what you
saw them do with old Jeff."

Bill, a tall, lank, one-gallowsed mountaineer, leaning against a
sapling near by, promptly deposed that he was present at the time,
saw old Jeff led out, tied to a stake and finally disappear in a
puff of smoke.  At this, General Fry, without the formality of a
farewell, immediately shook the mountain dust from his feet, mounted
his horse, and, looking neither to the right nor to the left,
retraced his steps to Danville, and without delay informed the
State Committee that if they wanted _any further joint debates with
old Frank Woolford,_ they would have to send some one else.

Years after, seated at my desk in the Postoffice Department in
Washington, after I had appointed a few cross-road postmasters for
Congressman Woolford, I ventured to inquire of him whether he
had ever had a joint debate with General Fry.  With a suppressed
chuckle, and a quaint gleam of his remaining eye, he significantly
replied, _"It won't do, Colonel, to believe everything you hear!"_



The late William M. Evarts, at one time the head of the American
bar, said many things in his lighter moments worthy of remembrance.

Upon his retirement from the bar to accept the position of Secretary
of State, a farewell dinner was given him by prominent lawyers
of New York.  The appointments, viands, etc., it is needless to
observe were all after the most approved style.  Somewhat out of
wont, however, a magnificent goose with all its appurtenances
and suitably dished was placed immediately in front of the guest
of honor.

The grosser part of the feast concluded, the toast was proposed:
"The Sage of the Bar."  Slowly arising, Mr. Evarts surveyed for
a moment the dish before him, and began:  "What a wonderful
transition!  An hour ago you beheld a goose stuffed with sage; _you
now behold a sage stuffed with goose!"_

It is not entirely forgotten that during the administration of
which Mr. Evarts was a part, total abstinence was faithfully enforced
in the great dining-room of the Executive Mansion upon all occasions.
To those who knew the Secretary of State, it is hardly necessary
to say that he had little sympathy with this arrangement, that
to him it was a custom "more honored in the breach than the

Now it so happened that at a state dinner, upon a time, a mild
punch in thimbleful instalments was served to the guests in lieu
of more generous beverages.  Raising the tiny vessel and bowing to
the Austrian Ambassador at his side, Mr. Evarts in undertone significantly
observed, "Life-saving station!"

To a "candid friend"--from whom God preserve us--who once took him
to task for his lengthy and somewhat involved sentences, Evarts
replied, "Oh, you are not the first man I ever encountered _who
objected to a long sentence."_

During his official term above mentioned, Mr. Evarts accompanied
a prominent member of the British Parliament to Mount Vernon.
Standing in front of the old mansion, so dear to all American
hearts, the distinguished visitor, looking across to the opposite shore,
remarked:  "I read in a history that when Washington was a boy
he threw a dollar across the Potomac; remarkable indeed that he
could have thrown a dollar so far, a mile away across the Potomac;
very remarkable indeed, I declare."  "Yes," replied Evarts, "but you
must remember that _a dollar would go a great deal farther then
than it does now."_

This incident being told to a member of Congress of Hibernian
antecedents, he immediately replied:  "Yes, he might have told the
Britisher that when Washington was a boy he sure enough threw a
dollar across the Potomac, and when he got to be a grown-up man,
_he threw a sovereign across the Atlantic."_

Mr. Evarts was counsel for President Johnson in his famous arraignment
before the Senate, sitting as a High Court of Impeachment.  His
speech, lasting many hours, was an able and exhaustive discussion of
the salient questions involved in the trial.  The leading managers
upon the part of the House of Representatives were Benjamin F.
Butler, George S. Boutwell, and John A. Bingham.  The retort
courteous was freely indulged in many times by the managers and
counsel from the beginning to the close of the long-drawn-out

It is a singular fact, and to this generation renders the entire
proceeding measurably farcical, that the managers upon the part of
the House, and the counsel for the impeached President, were at
cross-purposes from the beginning as to the real character of
the tribunal before which they were appearing.  The latter regarded
it as a court, and constantly addressed its presiding officer, the
Chief Justice of the United States, as "Your Honor"; while the
former insisted that it was only the Senate, and continually
addressed the Chief Justice as "Mr. President."

The issues involved were likewise argued by the opposing counsel
from wholly different standpoints.  The contention of the defence as
stated by counsel was:

"We are then in a court.  What are you to try?  You are to try the
charges contained in these articles of impeachment, and nothing
else.  Upon what are you to try them?  Not upon common fame; not
upon the price of gold in New York, or upon any question of finance;
not upon newspaper rumor; not upon any views of party policy;
you are to try them upon the evidence offered here and nothing
else, by the obligation of your oaths."

The contrary contention as stated by one of the managers was as

"We define, therefore, an impeachable high crime or misdemeanor,
to be one in its nature or consequences subversive of some fundamental
or essential principle of government, or highly prejudicial to the
public interest; and this may consist of a violation of the
Constitution, of law, or of duty by an act committed or omitted,
or without violating positive law, by the abuse of discretionary
powers from improper motives, or for any improper purpose."

With gulf as broad between managers and counsel as that separating
Dives and Lazarus, not only as to the issues to be tried, but as
to the nature of the functions and designation of the tribunal
before which they were appearing, and with the decision of the
Chief Justice upon questions of law arising continually over-ruled
by the majority of the Senators, it may reasonably be supposed that
there was much in the way of "travelling out of the record" in the
heated discussion which followed.

The associates of Mr. Evarts--Stanberry, Curtis, Groesbeck, and
Nelson--were the most solemn of men, and whatever there was "bright
with the radiance of utterance" to lessen the tension of the
protracted struggle, came from his own lips.

Near the close of his speech, Manager Boutwell, in attempting to
indicate the punishment merited by the accused, said:

"Travellers and astronomers inform us that in the southern heavens
near the Southern Cross there is a vast space which the uneducated
call a hole in the sky, where the eye of man, with the aid of
the telescope, has been unable to discover nebula, or asteroid,
planet, comet, star or sun.  In that dreary, cold, dark region
of space, which is only known to be less than infinite by the
evidences of creations elsewhere, the Great Author of celestial
mechanism has left the chaos which was in the beginning.  If
this earth were capable of the sentiments and emotions of justice and
virtue which in human mortal beings are the evidences and the pledge
of our divine origin and immortal destiny, it would heave and throw
with the energy of the elemental forces of nature, and project this
enemy of two races of men into that vast region, there forever
to exist in a solitude eternal as life, or as the absence of life,
emblematical of, it not really, that outer darkness of which the
Saviour of Man spoke in warning to those who are the enemies of
themselves, of their race, and of their God."

To the above Mr. Evarts replied:

"I may as conveniently at this point of the argument as at any
other pay some attention to the astronomical punishment which
the learned and honorable manager, Mr. Boutwell, thinks would be
applied to this novel case of impeachment of the President.  Cicero,
I think it is, who says that a lawyer should know everything,
for sooner or later there is no fact in history, in science, or of
human knowledge, that will not come into play in his argument.
Painfully sensible of my ignorance, being devoted to a profession which
sharpens and does not enlarge the mind, I yet can admit without
envy the superior knowledge evinced by the honorable manager.
Indeed, upon my soul, I believe he is aware of an astronomical fact
of which many professors of that science are wholly ignorant.
Nevertheless, while some of his honorable colleagues were paying
attention to an unoccupied and unappropriated island on the surface
of the seas, Mr. Manager Boutwell, more ambitious, had discovered an
untenanted and unappropriated region in the skies reserved, he
would have us think, in the final counsels of the Almighty as
the place of punishment for convicted and deposed American
Presidents.  At first I thought that his mind had become so enlarged
that it was not sharp enough to discover that the Constitution had
limited the punishment, but on reflection I saw that he was as
legal and logical as he was ambitious and astronomical, for the
Constitution has said 'removal from office,' and has put no distance
to the limit of removal, so that it may be, without shedding a drop
of his blood, or taking a penny of his property, or confining
his limbs, instant removal from office, and transportation to
the skies.  Truly this is a great undertaking and if the learned
manager can only get over the obstacles of the laws of nature, the
Constitution will not stand in his way.  He can contrive no method
but that of a convulsion of the earth, that shall project the
deposed President to this infinitely distant space; but a shock of
nature of so vast energy and for so great a result on him, might
unsettle even the footing of the firm members of Congress.  We
certainly need not resort to so perilous a method as that.  How
shall we accomplish it?  Why, in the first place, nobody knows
where that space is but the learned manager himself, and _he is
the necessary deputy to execute the judgment of the court."_

Two of the managers, Butler and Bingham, were at sword's points,
and had but recently assailed each other with great bitterness
in the House.  How all this was turned to account by the counsel
will now appear.  In vindicating the President against the charge of
undignified utterances and impropriety of speech in recent
public addresses, Mr. Evarts candidly admits that the Executive,
whose early educational advantages had been meagre indeed, and who
was confessedly untaught of the schools, "had gotten into trouble by
undertaking to be logical with a metaphor."

He insisted, however, that the President should be bound by no
higher standard of propriety of speech than that set by the House of
which the Honorable Managers were members.  The rule governing the
House in such matters will readily appear from a recent exchange
of courtesies between the two distinguished members referred to
above, Mr. Bingham and Mr. Butler.  The former said:

"I desire to say, Mr. Speaker, that it does not become a gentleman
who recorded his vote fifty times for Jefferson Davis as his candidate
for President of the United States, to undertake to damage this
cause by attempting to cast an imputation either upon my integrity
or my honor.  I repel with scorn and contempt any utterance of that
sort from any man, _whether he be the hero of Fort Fisher, not
taken, or of Fort Fisher, taken!"_

To which Mr. Butler replied:

"But if during the war, the gentleman from Ohio did as much as I
did in that direction, I shall be glad to recognize that much done.
But the only victim of the gentleman's prowess that I know of was an
innocent woman on the scaffold, one Mrs. Surratt.  I can sustain
the memory of Fort Fisher if he and his present associates can
sustain him in shedding the blood of a woman tried by a military
commission _and convicted, in my judgment, without sufficient

To which Mr. Bingham replied:  "I challenge the gentleman, I dare him
anywhere, in this tribunal or any tribunal, to assert that I
spoliated or mutilated any book.  Why, sir, such a charge without one
tittle of evidence is only fit to come from a man _who lives in
a bottle, and is fed with a spoon!"_

"Now, what under heavens that means," protested Evarts, "I do
not know, but it is within the common law of courtesy in the judgment
of the House of Representatives."



The subject of this brief sketch is still in life, very much so;
and that he

  "Shall live the lease of nature, pay his breath
  To time and mortal custom"

is the prayer of friends and political foes alike.  Who does not
know or has not heard of "Private John Allen," the sometime member
of Congress from Mississippi?  A more charming gentleman or delightful
companion for the hours of recreation and gladness has rarely
appeared in this old world.  He was, while in his teens, a private
soldier in the Confederate army, later was a practising lawyer,
and in time "reluctantly yielding to the earnest solicitations
of his friends," generously consented to serve a few terms in
Congress.  From his first entrance into the House, he was well
known to all its members.  No one needed an introduction--they all
knew John Allen.

Upon the conclusion of his first speech, which possibly referred
to the improvement of the Tombigbee River, he modestly remarked:
"Now I am through my speech for this time, Mr. Speaker, _and
will immediately retire to the cloak-room to receive the congratulations
of my friends."_

Speaker Reed, with whom he was a great favorite, never failed to
"recognize" John, and in fact by common consent he was always
entitled to the floor.  This fact will shed some light upon the
following incident.  During the roll-call of the House upon a motion
to adjourn at a late hour of a night session, Mr. Allen passed down
the aisle, with hat and overcoat upon his arm, and, stopping
immediately in front of the Clerk's desk, said "Mr. Speaker, ----"

"For what purpose," said Reed, "does the gentleman from Mississippi
interrupt the roll-call?"

"Mr. Speaker," continued Allen, "I rise to a parliamentary inquiry.
I want to know how General Wheeler voted on this motion."  To this
"parliamentary inquiry" the Speaker after ascertaining the fact
replied that the gentleman from Alabama had voted "aye."

"Well, then, Mr. Speaker," said John, "just put me down the same
way with General Wheeler; I followed him four years, and _he never
led me into danger yet."_

Seated one day in the Senate restaurant, I observed Mr. Allen
standing at the entrance.  Upon my invitation, he took a seat at
my table.  "What will you have, John?" said I.  With an abstracted
air, and the appearance of being extremely embarrassed by his
surroundings, he replied, "It makes mighty little difference about
me anyway," and turning to a waiter he slowly drawled out, "Bring me
some terrapin and champagne."  Then, in an apologetic tone he
quietly observed, "I got used to that durin' the Wah."

After a moment's pause, he continued, "By the way, did you ever
hear the expression 'before the Wah'?"  I intimated that the
expression had not wholly escaped me.

"I heard it once under rather peculiar circumstances," said John.
"Down in the outskirts of my deestrict, there is an old-time
religious sect known as the 'hard-shell' or 'iron-jacket' Baptists;
mighty good, honest people, of course, but old-fashioned in their ways
and everlastingly opposed to all new-fangled notions, such as having
Temperance societies, Missionary societies, and Sunday schools.
They would, however, die in their tracks before they would ever
let up on the good old church doctrines, especially predestination.
Oh, I tell you they were predestinarians from away back.  John
Calvin with his vapory views upon that question would not have been
admitted even on probation.  Sometimes the preacher during his
sermon, turning to the Amen corner would inquire:  'When were you,
my brother, predestinated to eternal salvation, or eternal

"Well, the answer that had come down from the ages always was,
'From the foundation of the world.'

"When I was making my first race for Congress, I spoke in that
neighborhood one Saturday, and stayed all night with one of the
elders, and on Sunday of course I went to church.  During the
sermon, the preacher while holding forth as usual on his
favorite doctrine, suddenly turning to a stranger who had somehow got
crowded into the Amen corner, said:  'My brother, when were you
predestinated to eternal salvation or eternal damnation?'  To which
startling inquiry the stranger, terribly embarrassed, hesitatingly
answered:  'I don't adzactly remember, Parson, but _I think it was
befo' the Wah.'"_

A comrade of John in Company G was a tow-headed, lantern-jawed
fellow who never failed somehow to get to the rear and to a place of
comparative safety at the first intimation of approaching battle.
He was proof alike against the gibes of his comrades and the threats
of his officers.  Upon one occasion the approach of the enemy
was heralded by a few shells bursting suggestively near the spot
where Company G was stationed.  The tow-headed veteran immediately
began preparations to retire.  With threatening mien, levelled
revolver, and oaths that would have done no discredit to "our army
in Flanders," the Captain ordered the skulker back into line, upon
pain of instant death.  Leaning upon his musket, and with familiar
gaze upon his irate superior, the culprit slowly drawled:  "I don't
mine bein' muddered by a high-tone Southern gentleman like you,
Cappen, but dam if I'm gwyen to eternally disgrace my family by
lettin' one of them low-down Yankees shoot me!"

Allen was no exception to the rule that men gifted like himself
are subject to occasional seasons of gloom, but his greeting usually
came as a benediction.  At the banquet table, when dull care was
laid aside and he was surrounded by genial companions,--"for
'tis meet that noble minds keep ever with their likes"--his star
was at its zenith.  Then indeed, all rules were suspended; no point
of order suggested--"The man and the hour had met."  His marvellous
narratives of quaint incidents and startling experiences, his
brilliant repartee, sallies of wit, banter, and badinage have rarely
been heard since the days of the Round Table or the passing of "the
Star and Garter."

Once, however, John Allen confessedly met his match in the person of
the Hon. John R. Fellows, who had been Colonel of an Arkansas
regiment in the Confederate service; later a prominent leader of
Tammany Hall, and was at the time mentioned, a Representative in
Congress from New York.  He was the "Prince Rupert of Debate," and
was gifted with eloquence rarely equalled.  At a banquet given
in his honor upon his retirement from Congress, a hundred or more of
his associates were guests, including, of course, the subject of
this sketch.  Men high in councils of State, leaders of both parties,
and of both Houses, had gathered around the board, and good-fellowship
and mirth reached the high-water mark.  By common consent Fellows and
Allen were in undisputed possession of the floor.  Such passages-at-arms
no pen can describe.  Even "John Chamberlain's" in its palmiest days
has never known the like.

Near the close Allen said:

"There is one thing I would like to have Colonel Fellows explain.
He was captured the first year of the war, and never exchanged,
but held as a prisoner by the Federals until the war was over.
I was taken prisoner five times, and always promptly exchanged.
I would like Colonel Fellows to explain how it was that he was kept
in a place of safety, while I was always at the front?"

When the applause which followed had subsided, Colonel Fellows
arose and said:

"I am grateful to my friend from Mississippi for giving me an
opportunity to explain that part of my military record which I
apprehend has never been sufficiently clear.  It is true.  I was
taken prisoner the first year of the war, and the enemy, well
knowing the danger of my being at large, persistently refused to
release me until peace was restored.  Had I been promptly exchanged,
_the result of that war might have been different!_  But why it
was, that my friend from Mississippi was so repeatedly and promptly
exchanged is a question that until yesterday I have never been able
to understand.  It has given me deep concern.  I have pondered over
it during the silent watches of the night.  Yesterday, however, my
mind was completely set at rest upon that question by reading
the correspondence--to be found in Volume 748, page 421 of the
'Record of the War of the Rebellion'--between President Lincoln
and President Davis relating to the exchange of Private John Allen
of Company G, Fourteenth Mississippi Volunteers.  The correspondence
covers many pages of this valuable publication, but I will read
only the closing communication."

And while John with a new supply of terrapin before him was listening
intently, Fellows carefully adjusting his eye-glasses and taking
a letter from his pocket, continued:

"The letter I will read from President Lincoln concluded the
correspondence, and is as follows:  _'Dear Jeff:_  With this I
return you Private John Allen of Company G, Fourteenth Mississippi.
I require no prisoner in exchange.  The Lord's truth is, Jeff,
_I had rather fight John than feed him!'"_



Upon my admission to the bar in 1858, I located at Metamora, a
village of five hundred inhabitants, about forty miles northwest
of Bloomington.  It was beautifully and _quietly_ situated,
eight miles from the railroad, and was at the time the county-seat
of Woodford County, one of the finest agricultural portions of

Metamora contained many delightful families, and a cordial welcome
was accorded me.  The old tavern, "Traveller's Home," was mine inn,
and as a hostelry it possessed rare advantages.  The one that
chiefly recommended it to me was its extremely moderate charges.
Two dollars and a half per week for board and lodging, "washing
and mending" included, were the inviting terms held out to all
comers and goers.  There was much, however, in the surroundings,
appointments, etc., of this ancient inn, little calculated to
reconcile delicately toned mortals to things of sense.  It was
of this place of entertainment that Colonel Ingersoll spoke when, in
his description of the tapestry of Windsor Castle, he said that it
reminded him of a Metamora table-cloth _the second week of court._

The dear old tavern has fallen a victim to the remorseless tooth
of time, but, in the palmy days of Metamora, when it was the
county-seat, and the Spring and Fall terms of court were as regular
in their coming as the seasons themselves, the old tavern was in
its glory, and for all "transients" and "regulars" it was the chief
objective point.  For a decade or more its walls gave shelter to
Judge Treat, Judge Davis, Mr. Lincoln, General Gridley, Judge
Purple, and more than once to General Shields and Stephen A. Douglas.
At a later date it was upon like occasion the stopping place of
Colonel Ingersoll, John Burns, Judge Shaw, James S. Ewing, Robert E.
Williams, Judge Richmond, and other well-known members of the bar.

One of my earliest acquaintances in Metamora, and one not soon
to be forgotten, was Doctor John--familiarly called "Doc," except upon
state occasions.  As I write, the vision of the Doctor arises before
me out of the mists of the shadowy past.  His personal appearance was
indeed remarkable.  Standing six feet six in his number elevens,
without an ounce of superfluous flesh, a neck somewhat elongated
and set off to great advantage by an immense "Adam's apple," which
appeared to be constantly on duty, head large and features a trifle
exaggerated, and with iron gray locks hanging gracefully over
his slightly stooped shoulders, the Doctor would have given pause to
the McGregor, even with foot upon his native heather.  He first
saw the light of day in the "Panhandle" of the Old Dominion; the
part thereof afterwards detached for the formation of the new State.
How this all came about was to the Doctor as inexplicable as the
riddle of the Sphinx; but he scouted the thought that he had
ever ceased to be a son of "the real old Virginny."  He claimed to
be a descendant of one of "the first families," and there lingered
about him in very truth much of the chivalric bearing of the old
cavalier stock.  No man living could possibly have invited a
gentleman "to partake of some spirits" or "to participate in a
glass of beer," in a loftier manner than did the Doctor.  Not
himself a member of the visible church, nor even an occasional
attendant upon its service, the heart of the Doctor nevertheless,
like that of the renowned Cave Burton, responded feelingly to every
earnest supplication "for the preservation of the kindly fruits of
the earth to be enjoyed in due season."  And with the Doctor, as
with Cave, the question of the _quantity_ of the kindly fruits thus
preserved was of far greater moment than any mere matter of sentiment
as to their _quality._

The intellectual attainments of the Doctor, it must be admitted,
were not of the highest order.  He was a student of men rather than
of books.  He had journeyed but little along the flowery paths
of literature.  He never gave "local habitation or name" to the
particular Medical College which had honored him with its degree.
He was, as he often asserted, of the "epleptic" school of medicine.
In reply to my inquiry as to what that really was, he solemnly
asservated that it was the only school which permitted its
practitioners to accept all that was good, and reject all that was
bad, of all the other schools.  In his practice he had a supreme
contempt for what he called "written proscriptions," and often
boasted that he never allowed one of them to go out of his office.
He infinitely preferred to compound his own medicines, which, with
the aid of mortar and pestle, he did in unstinted measure in his
office.  On rainy days and during extremely healthy seasons, his
stock was thereby largely augmented.  In administering his "doses"
his generous spirit manifested itself as clearly as along other
lines.  No "pent-up Utica" contracted his powers.  It has been many
times asserted, and with apparent confidence, that no patient of
his ever complained of not having received full measure.  There were
no Oliver Twists among his patients.  It was a singular fact in
all the professional experience of this eminent practitioner, that
his patients, regardless of age or sex, were all afflicted with
a like malady.  Many a time as he returned from a professional
visit, mounted on his old roan, with his bushel measure medicine
bag thrown across his saddle, in answer to my casual inquiry as to
the ailment of his patient, he gave in oracular tones, the one
all-sufficient reply, _"only a slight derangement of the nervous

He never quite forgave Mr. Lincoln the reply he once made to an
ill-advised interruption of the Doctor during a political speech.
"Well, well, Doctor," replied Mr. Lincoln, good-humoredly, "I will
take anything from you _except your medicines."_

The Doctor was a bachelor, and his "May of life" had fallen into
the sear and yellow leaf at the time of which we write.  He was
still, however, as he more than once assured me, an ardent admirer
of "the opposing sect."

In one of his most confidential moods, he disclosed to me the
startling fact that he had in early life been the victim of a
misplaced confidence.  In an unguarded moment he entrusted the idol
of his heart to the safe keeping of a friend, in the whiteness
of whose soul he trusted as in a mother's love, while he, the
confiding Doctor, journeyed westward to seek a home.

  "He knew not the doctrine of ill-doing,
  Nor dreamed that any did."

Alas for human frailty, "the badge of all our race."  Upon his
return after an absence of several moons, he found to his unspeakable
dismay that that same "friend" had taken to wife the idol whose
image had so long found lodgment in the Doctor's own sad heart.
Too late he realized, as wiser men have done before and since, that

  "Friendship is constant in all other things
  Save in the office and affairs of love."

The Doctor was much given at times to what he denominated "low down
talks" such as are wont when kindred souls hold close converse.
Seated in my office on one occasion, at the hour when churchyards yawn,
and being as he candidly admitted in a somewhat "reminiscent" mood,
he unwittingly gave expression to thoughts beyond the reaches of
our souls, when I made earnest inquiry, "Doctor, what in your
judgment as a medical man is to be the final destination of the
human soul?"  The solemn hour of midnight, together with the no
less solemn inquiry, at once plunged the Doctor into deep thought.
First carefully changing his quid from the right to the left jaw, he
slowly and as if thoughtfully measuring his words, replied:  "Brother
Stevenson, _the solar system are one of which I have given very
little reflection."_

It is a sad fact that in this world the best of men are not wholly
exempt from human frailties.  Even in the noble calling of medicine
there have been at times slight outcroppings of a spirit of
professional jealousy.  That the subject of these brief chronicles
was no exception to this infirmity will appear from a remark he
once made in regard to a professional contemporary whose practice had
gradually encroached upon the Doctor's beat.  Said he:  "They talk a
good deal about this Doc Wilson's practice; but I'll 'low that
my books will show a greater degree of mortality than what hisn

The Doctor was one of the regular boarders at the historic inn
already mentioned.  By long and faithful service he had won the
honored position of chief boarder, and his place by common consent
was at the head of the table.  No one who ever sat at that delightful
board could forget the dignified manner in which the Doctor would take
his accustomed seat, and without unnecessary delay proceed to
appropriate whatever viands might be within his reach.  As a matter
of especial grace upon the part of the good landlady, an
old-fashioned corn pone and a pitcher of sweet milk appeared
occasionally upon the supper table of this most excellent inn.  Such
visitations were truly regarded, even by the veterans, as very
oases in the desert of life.  Now, it so happened, that upon a cold
December evening, between the first and second tolling of the supper
bell, the boarders in anxious expectancy were awaiting the final
summons, in a small chamber hard by the dining-room.  To this
assembly the writer hereof remarked:  "It seems to me, gentlemen, that
it has been a long time since we have been favored with pone bread
and sweet milk.  I therefore move that Doctor John be appointed
a committee of one to request Mrs. Sparks to have these delicacies
for supper to-morrow night."

A hearty second was immediately given by Whig Ewing, Esq., at a
later day distinguished both as an orator and a Judge.  Without
shadow of opposition the resolution was adopted, and upon summons the
boarders were almost immediately thereafter in their accustomed
places at the table.  Turning to the landlady as she slowly approached
with a platter of cold biscuits, the Doctor in most conciliatory
tones said:  "Mrs. Sparks, at a regular meeting of the borders held
this evening I was appointed a committee of one to invite you to
have corn pone and sweet milk to-morrow evening."  A deep frown at
once encircled the fair brow of our hostess.  Unlike that of the
late Mrs. Tam O'Shanter, her wrath needed no nursing to keep it
warm.  Advancing a step, and with apparent effort suppressing
her emotion, she slowly articulated _"What did you say, Doctor?"_
Presaging danger in the very air, the Doctor repeated in husky
tones, "At a regular meeting of the boarders held this evening,
I was appointed a committee of one to invite you to have corn bread
for supper to-morrow evening."  At the repetition the frown upon
the brow of the fair one darkened and deepened.  Advancing a
step nearer the object of her wrath, she said, "If _you_ or any of
the _other_ boarders are dissatisfied with my house, you can leave,
_and leave now!"_

With the thermometer at zero and Peoria seventeen miles away,
and the Illinois out of its banks, there was little that was
comforting in her words.  The stillness of the grave was upon that
little assembly.  At length, to relieve the strain of the situation,
if possible, the writer inquired, "What was your remark, Doctor
John?" to which the Doctor, in a tome somewhat hopeful but by no
means confident, replied, "I was just remarking to our beloved
landlady, brother Stevenson, that at a regular meeting of the
boarders held this evening I was appointed a committee to invite
her to have corn bread for supper to-morrow night."  To which I
modestly replied, "Well, if any such meeting as that was ever held,
_it is very strange that I heard nothing about it."_  This kindly
observation only deepened the gloom, and perceptibly lessened the
distance between the irate hostess and the chief boarder.  The
latter in sheer desperation at length appealed for succor to Ewing,
who until this moment, strangely enough, had been an attentive
listener.  Thus appealed to, the latter, with Prince Albert buttoned
to the very top, and with the statesman's true pose, said:

"I beg to assure you, Mrs. Sparks, that I am profoundly ignorant
of any such meeting of the boarders as has been indicated.  Had
I been apprised that such meeting was contemplated I would have
attended and used by utmost endeavor to secure the defeat of its
ill-timed resolution.  Let me say further, madam, that I am not
fond of corn bread.  The biscuits with which we are nourished from
day to day are exactly to my taste, and even if they were a few
degrees colder I would cherish them still the more fondly.  In the
years gone by, madam, I have been a guest at the Astor, the Galt, the
St. Charles, and at the best hotels in London and upon the continent
of Europe.  None of them in my humble judgment are comparable to
this.  I assure you solemnly, madam, that I have lingered in
this village month after month only because of my reluctance to
tear myself away from your most excellent hotel."

With finger raised, step advanced, and eye fixed uncharitably upon
the offending physician, the gentle hostess in voice little above a
whisper, said, _"Doc, I think you made that up out of whole cloth."_
The crisis was reached; flesh and blood could endure no more.  The
Doctor rose, and waiving all formalities and farewells, "stood not
upon the order of his going."

For reasons unnecessary to explain, I did not seek the Doctor that
evening nor the following day.  Morning and noon came and went,
but the chief boarder did not appear.  The vacant chair was to
those who lingered a pathetic reminder of the sad departure.  When,
upon the following evening, the surviving boarders gathered to
their accustomed places, they beheld in wonderment a splendid pone,
savory and hot, flanked upon its left by the old yellow pitcher
filled to its brim with rich, sweet milk.

A moment later, and all eyes were turned to the open door through which
a once familiar figure moved to his seat.  Suddenly stretching both
arms to the middle of the table, with one hand the good Doctor
grasped the pone, and with the other the pitcher, and holding both
aloft as he gazed upon each boarder in turn, exclaimed, "I understand
the boarders are not fond of corn bread."  In the twinkling of
an eye, the Doctor, _the pitcher, the pone had all disappeared from
the dining-room,_ and the latter two were ne'er heard of more.
The poetic justice of the situation, however, was so complete, that
no word of complaint was ever uttered.

Some weeks after the events last narrated, I heard the sound of
many voices accompanied by peals of laughter coming from the office
of Doctor John.  Stopping at his door, I soon learned that the
tumult was occasioned by a discussion as to whether the Doctor
could spell "sugar" correctly.  The faction adverse to the physician
was led by one William Hawkins, a country schoolmaster.  The latter
and his allies bantered and badgered the old Doctor to their hearts'
content.  Rendered desperate at length by their merciless gibes,
the Doctor, taking from his vest pocket a five-dollar bill--one
I had loaned him an hour before with which to pay a couple of weeks'
boards--he offered to bet the full amount that he could spell
the word correctly.  A like amount being at length raised by the
adverse faction, the question at once arose as to who should be
the arbiter.  Observing me for the first time as I stood at the
door, the Doctor declared his willingness to accept me as "empire."
It may here be remarked that the honorable office to which I was
thus nominated is sometimes called "umpire."  Webster, Worcester, and
possibly other lexicographers give the latter pronunciation the
preference.  But the Doctor being "an old settler" and much better
acquainted in that locality than either of the other authorities, his
preference will be recognized, and "empire" it will be to the end of
this chapter.  At all events my nomination--for the first and only
time--was unanimously concurred in.  Stepping at once into the
office and confronting the leaders of the opposing faction, I stated
candidly that while I highly appreciated the distinction tendered,
still I was unwilling to accept the responsible position of "empire"
save upon the explicit agreement that, _whatever the decision,_
there should be no complaint or grumbling upon the part of the
disaffected or disgruntled hereafter; that "empires" after all were
only men and liable to the mistakes and errors incident to our poor
humanity.  To the end, therefore, that an "empire" act with proper
independence, it was all important that his decision pass unchallenged.
These reasonable requirement being readily acquiesced in, the office
was accepted and the money hazarded by each faction carefully
deposited in the "empire's" vest pocket.  The arbiter now solemnly
addressing the principal actor said:  "Doctor, the word is, 'sugar';
_proceed to spell."_

The Doctor immediately stood up.  The psychological question, if
it be such, is here presented whether _standing_ is the more eligible
position for the severe mental effort indicated above.  Waiving
all discussion upon this interesting point, the fact is here
faithfully chronicled that the Doctor stood up.  Looking neither
to the right nor to the left, but standing majestically in the
middle of the room, and presenting in some of its characteristics the
beauty and symmetry of an inverted L, the Doctor began, "S-h-o-o-g
----" whereupon the little schoolmaster burst into loud laughing.
Solemnly warning him against the repetition of such conduct, the
arbiter reminded him that such manifestations in the very presence
of the "empire," were in some countries punished with immediate
death, and again significantly warned him against its recurrence.
At the same time the Doctor was reminded that he had not yet
completed the spelling of the word.  The Doctor replied, "If it is
all the same to you, Mr. Empire, I believe I will begin all over
again."  Permission being granted, the spelling was resumed:
"S-h-o-o-g-o-r."  To this the arbiter responded, "You have spelled
the word correctly, Doctor," and  _immediately handed him the

One of the interesting events occurring during my residence in
Metamora, was a noted temperance revival under the auspices of "the
Grand Worthy Deputy" of a well-known temperance organization.  A
lodge was duly organized, and a profound interest aroused in the
good work.  During the visit of the excellent lady who bore with
becoming modesty the somewhat formidable title above given, the
interest deepened, meetings were of nightly occurrence, and
large numbers were gathered into the fold.  For many days ordinary
pursuits were suspended, and the grand cause was the only and
all-absorbing topic of conversation.

Chief among the initiated was our old friend Doctor John.  His
conversion created a profound sensation, and it veritably seemed
for a time as though a permanent breach had been effected in the
ramparts of Satan.  It was even boasted that the Presbyterian
clergyman, one saloon keeper, and the writer of these truthful
annals were, as Judge Tipton would say, "substantially" the only
adherents remaining to His Satanic Majesty.  The pressure was,
however, soon irresistible, and the writer, deserting his sometime
associates, at length passed over to the _un_silent majority.

The Doctor was the bearer of my petition, and in due time and as
the sequel will show, for only a short time, I was in good and
regular standing.  As explanatory of the sudden termination of what
might under happier auspices have proved an eminently useful career,
it may be casually mentioned that upon the writer's first introduction
into the lodge, in answer to the official inquiry solemnly propounded,
"Why do you seek admission into our honorable order?" he unwittingly
replied, _"Because Doctor John joined."_

This was for the moment permitted to pass, and the exercises of
the session reached the high-water mark of entertainment.  At some
time during the evening, by way of "exemplifying the work," Doctor
John had for the second time taken the solemn vow henceforth and
forever to abstain from the use of all fluids of alcoholic, vinous,
or fermented character.

The hour for separation at length drew nigh.  Thus far all had gone
merry as a marriage bell.  All signs betokened fair weather.
Barring the temporary commotion occasioned by the uncanonical reply
of the writer above given, not a ripple had appeared upon the
surface.  It was at length announced that this was the last evening
that the Grand Worthy Deputy could be with us, as she was to leave
for her distant home by the stage coach in the early morning.
Splendidly set off in her great robes of office, her farewell words
of instruction, encouragement, and admonition, were then most
tenderly spoken.  Before pronouncing the final farewell--"that word
which makes us linger"--she calmly remarked that this would be her
last opportunity to expound any constitutional question that might
hereafter arise pertaining to the well-being of the order, and that
she would gladly answer any inquiry that any brother or sister
about the lodge might propose.  Her seat was then resumed, and
silence for the time reigned supreme.  At length, amid stillness
that could no longer be endured, she arose and advancing to the
front of the platform, repeated, in manner more solemn than before,
the invitation above given.  Still there was no response.  It
all seemed formidable and afar off.  In the hope that he might
in some measure dispel the embarrassment, the unworthy chronicler of
these important events, from his humble place in the northwest
corner of the lodge, for the first and last time addressed the
chair.  Permission being graciously given him to proceed, he candidly
admitted that he had no constitutional question himself to propound,
but that Brother John was in grave doubt touching a question
upon which he would be glad to have the opinion of the chair.

"I understand," continued the speaker, "from the nature of the
pledge that if any brother, or sister even for that matter, should
partake of liquors alcoholic, vinous, or fermented, he or she would
be liable to expulsion from the order.  Am I correct?"

"That is certainly correct, Brother Stevenson," was the prompt
reply in no uncertain tone.

"I so understand it," continued the speaker, "and so does Brother John.
What he seeks to know is this:  If in an unguarded moment he should
hearken to the voice of the tempter, and so far forget his solemn vows
as to partake of alcoholic, vinous, or fermented liquors, and be
expelled therefor, would he thereby be wholly beyond the pale of
the lodge, or would he _by virtue of his second obligation taken
this night,_ have another chance, and still retain his membership in
the order?"

The official answer, in tone no less uncertain than before, was
instantly given.

"No, sir, if Brother John _or you either,_ should drink one drop
of the liquors mentioned and be expelled therefor, you would both be
helplessly beyond the pale of the lodge, even though you had _both
taken the obligation a thousand times!"_

As the ominous applause which followed died away, Brother John,
half arising in his seat, vehemently exclaimed,

"Mrs. Worshipful Master, _I never told him to ask no such damn fool



About the year of grace 1889, a number of distinguished statesmen were
invited to attend a political banquet to be given by the local
Democratic Association of the splendid city of Atlanta, Georgia.
Among the guests were Representative Flower of New York and General
Collins of Massachusetts; the chief guest of the occasion was the
Hon. David B. Hill, then the Governor of New York.  The banquet
was under the immediate auspices of the lamented Gordon, and of
Grady of glorious memory.  The board literally groaned under the
rarest viands, and Southern hospitality was at its zenith.  It was,
all in all, an occasion to live in memory.  I was not one of the
invited guests of the committee, but being in a neighboring city
was invited by Mr. Grady to be present.

At the conclusion of the feast, a toast was proposed to "The Gallant
Democracy of New York."  Glasses were touched and the enthusiasm
was unbounded.  The toast was of course responded to by the
distinguished Governor of the Empire State.  He was at his best.
His speech, splendid in thought and diction, was heard with
breathless interest.

The keynote was struck, and speech after speech followed in the
proper vein.  There was no discordant note, the burden of every
speech being the gallant Democracy and splendid statesmanship of
the great State of New York.

When the distinguished guests had all spoken, the master of
ceremonies, General Gordon, proposed a toast to "The Democracy
of Illinois," and called upon me to respond.  I confessed that I
was only an average Democrat from Illinois; that way out there
we were content to be of the rank and file, and of course to follow
the splendid leadership and the gallant Democracy of which we
had heard so much.  To vote for a New York candidate had by long
usage become a fixed habit with us, in fact, we would hardly know how
to go about voting for a candidate from any other State; and I then
related an incident on the question of supporting the ticket, which
I thought might be to the point.

In 1872, in the portion of Illinois in which I live, there was
an earnest desire on the part of conservative Democrats and liberal
Republicans, to elect the Hon. David Davis to the Presidency.
He had been a Whig in early life, brought up in the school of
Webster and Clay, and was later the devoted personal and political
friend of Mr. Lincoln.  An earnest Union man during the war, he
had at its close favored the prompt restoration to the Southern
people of all their rights under the Constitution.  As a judge
of the Supreme Court, he had rendered a decision in which human
life was involved, in which he had declared the supremacy of the
Federal Constitution _in war as well as in peace._  Believing that
he would prove an acceptable candidate, I had gladly joined the
movement to secure his nomination at the now historic convention
which met at Cincinnati in May, 1872.  For many weeks prior to the
meeting of that convention, there was little talked of in
central Illinois but the nomination of Judge Davis for President.
Morning, noon, and night, "Davis, Davis, Davis," was the burden of
our song.

He did not, as is well known, receive the nomination, that honor, of
course, passing to a distinguished Democratic statesman of New York.

Two or three days before I was to leave my home for the Cincinnati
convention, an old Democratic friend from an adjoining county came
into my office.  He was an old-timer in very truth.  He was born
in Tennessee, had when a mere boy fought under Jackson at Talladega,
Tallapoosa, and New Orleans, had voted for him three times for
the Presidency, and expected to join him when he died.  He had
lived in Illinois since the "big snow," and his party loyalty was
a proverb.

As I shook hands with him when he came into my office, he laid
aside his saddle-bags, stood his rifle in the corner, took off his
blanket overcoat, and seating himself by the fire, inquired how my
"folks" all were.  The answer being satisfactory, and the fact
ascertained by me that his own "folks" were well, he asked.

"Mr. Stevenson, who are you fur fur President?"

Unhesitatingly and earnestly I replied, "Davis."

A shade, as of disappointment, appeared for a moment upon his
countenance, but instantly recovering himself, he said, "Well,
if they nominate him, we will give him the usual majority in our
precinct, but don't you think, Mr. Stevenson, _it is a leetle airly
to bring old Jeff out?"_



A name to conjure with in the old North State is Zeb Vance.  What Lee
was to Virginia, Hendricks to Indiana, Clay to Kentucky, and Lincoln
to Illinois, Zebulon B. Vance was for a lifetime to North Carolina.
He was seldom spoken of as Governor, or Senator, but alike in piny
woods and in the mountains, he was familiarly called "Zeb Vance."
He was the idol of all classes and conditions.  A decade has
gone since he passed to the grave, but his memory is still green.
A grateful people have erected a monument to commemorate his public
services, while from the French Broad to the Atlantic, alike in
humble cabin and stately home, his name is a household word.

  "He had kept the whiteness of his soul,
  And thus men o'er him wept."

The expression "rare," as given to Ben Jonson, might with equal
propriety be applied to Senator Vance.  Deeply read in classic
lore, a profound lawyer, and an indefatigable student from the
beginning in all that pertained to human government, he was the
fit associate of the most cultured in the drawing-room or the
Senate.  None the less, with the homely topics of everyday life
for discussion, he was equally at home, and ever a welcome guest
at the hearthstone of the humblest dweller in pine forest and
mountain glen of his native State.

Of all the men I have ever known, Vance was _par excellence_ the
possessor of the wondrous gift of humor.  It was ingrained; literally
a part of his very being.  He once told me that he thought his fame
for one generation, at least, was secure, inasmuch as one-half
of the freckled-faced boys and two-thirds of the "yaller" dogs
in North Carolina had been named in his honor.

Upon one occasion in the Senate, a bill he had introduced was
bitterly antagonized by a member who took occasion in his speech, while
questioning the sincerity of Vance, to extol his own honesty of
purpose.  In replying to the vaunt of superior honesty by his
opponent, Vance quoted the old Southland doggerel:

  "De darky in de ole camp ground
  Dat loudest sing and shout
  Am gwine to rob a hen-roost
  Befo' de week am out."

The summer home of Senator Vance during the later years of his life
was in his native county of Buncombe, about twenty miles from
Asheville, where for some days I was his guest, many years ago.
Leaving the cars at the nearest station and following the trail
for a dozen miles, I found the Senator snugly ensconced in his
comfortable home at the top of the mountain.  He was alone, his
family being "down in the settlements," as he told me.  An old
negro man _to whom Vance once belonged,_ as he assured me, was
housekeeper, cook, and butler, besides being the incumbent of
various other offices of usefulness and dignity.

The first inquiry from Vance as, drenched with rain, I entered his
abode and approached a blazing fire, was, "Are you _dry?"_  It
would only gratify an idle curiosity to tell how the first moments
of this memorable visit passed.  Suffice it to say that old-time
Southern hospitality was at its best, and so continued till the
morning of the fifth day, when I descended in company with my host
to the accustomed haunts of busy men.

The days and evenings passed with Vance at the cheerful fireside
of his mountain home still live in my memory.  He literally "unfolded
himself," and it was indeed worth while to listen to his description
of the quaint times and customs with which he was familiar in
the long ago, to hear of the men he had known and of the stormy
events of which he had been a part.

His public life reached back to a time anterior to the war.  He
was in Congress when its Representatives assembled in the Old Hall,
now the "Valhalla" of the nation.  Events once of deep significance
were recalled from the mists of a long past; men who had strutted their
brief hour upon the stage and then gone out with the tide were made
to live again.  Incidents once fraught with deep consequence but
now relegated to the by-paths of history, were again in visible
presence, as if touched by the enchanter's wand.

The scenes, of which he was the sad and silent witness, attendant upon
the withdrawal of his colleagues and associates from both chambers
of the Capitol, and the appeal to the sword--precursors of the
chapter of blood yet to be written--were never more graphically
depicted by mortal tongue.

I distinctly recall, even at this lapse of time, some of the
incidents he related.  When first he was a candidate for Congress,
far back in the fifties, his district embraced a large portion
of the territory of the entire western part of his State.  Fully
to appreciate what follows, it must be remembered that at that time
there was in the backwoods country, and in the out-of-the-way
places, far off from the great highways, much of antagonism between
the various religious denominations.  At times much of the sermons
of the rural preachers consisted of denunciations of other churches.
By a perusal of the autobiography of the Rev. Peter Cartwright, it
will be seen that western North Carolina was only in line with
other portions of the great moral vineyard.  The doctrines peculiar
to the particular denomination were preached generally with
great earnestness and power.  "Blest be the tie that binds our
hearts in Christian love," was too seldom heard in the rural
congregations.  In too many, indeed, Christian charity, even in
a modified form, was an unknown quantity.

Under the conditions mentioned, to say that seekers of public place
obeyed the Apostolic injunction to be "all things to all men" is
only to say that they were--_candidates._

It so fell out that our candidate for Congress at the time mentioned
was quietly threading his way on horseback to meet his appointment.
Far out from the county seat, in a wild and sparsely populated
locality, at a sudden turn in the road he found himself in the
immediate presence of a worshipping congregation in God's first
temple.  It was what is known in mountain parlance as a "protracted
meeting."  The hour was noon, and the little flock had just been
called from labor to refreshment.  The cloth was spread in the
shade of a large tree, and liberally supplied with ham, fried
chicken, salt-rising bread, corn dodgers, cucumber pickles, and
other wholesome edibles.  When Vance appeared upon the scene,
the leader of the little flock at once greeted him with cordial
invitation to "light and take a bite with us."  The candidate
accepted the invitation, and fastening his horse to a convenient
tree, approached the assembled worshippers, introducing himself as
"Zeb Vance, Whig candidate for Congress."  The thought uppermost
in his soul as he shook hands all around and accepted the proffered
hospitality was, "What denomination is this?  Methodist?  Baptist?
_What?"_  As soon as this inquiry could be satisfactorily answered,
he was, of course, ready to join; his "letter" was ready to be
handed in.  But as he quickly scanned the faces about him, he could
get no gleam of light upon the all-important question.  Suddenly
his meditations were ended, the abstract giving way to the concrete,
by the aforementioned leader abruptly inquiring, "Mr. Vance,
what persuasion are you of?"

The hour had struck.  The dreaded inquiry must be answered
satisfactorily _and at once._  That Vance was equal to the emergency
will be seen from the sequel.

Promptly laying down the chicken leg, the chunk of salt-rising
bread, and cucumber pickle with which he had been abundantly supplied
by one of the dear old sisters, and assuming an appropriate oratorical
pose, with his eyes intent upon his interrogator, he began:

"My sainted grandfather was, during the later years of his long
and useful life, a ruling elder in the Presbyterian Church."
The gathering brow and shaking head of the local shepherd would
even to a less observing man than the candidate have been sufficient
warning that he was on the wrong trail.  "But," continued the
speaker, "my father during long years of faithful service in the
Master's cause was an equally devout member of the Methodist
Episcopalian Church."

The sombre aspect of the shepherd, with the no less significant
shake of the head, was unmistakable intimation to our candidate
that danger was in the very air.  Rallying himself, however, for
the last charge, with but one remaining shot in his locker, the
orator earnestly resumed:  "But, when _I_ came to the years of
maturity, and was able, after prayer and meditation, to read and
understand that blessed book myself, I came to the conclusion _that
the old Baptist Church was right."_

"Bless God!" exclaimed the old preacher, seizing Vance by the hand.
"He is all right, brethren!  Oh, you'll get all the votes in these
parts, Brother Vance!"

Talking along religious lines at the time of the visit mentioned, he
illustrated the difference between profession and practice.  "Now,
there is my brother Bob," referring to General Robert B. Vance;
"he is, you know, a Methodist, and believes in falling from grace,
_but he never falls,_ while I am a Presbyterian, and don't believe
in falling from grace, _but I am always falling!"_

The first wife of Senator Vance was a Presbyterian.  Some years
after her death, he was married to an excellent lady, a devoted
member of the Roman Catholic Church.  Soon thereafter, he was taken
to task by an old Presbyterian neighbor, who expressed great surprise
that he should marry a Catholic.  "Well," replied the Senator with
imperturbably good humor, "the fact is, Uncle John, as I had tried
Rum, and tried Rebellion, I just thought I would try Romanism too!"

Many years ago, near the western border of Buncombe County, lived an
old negro who had in early life been a member of the family of the
father of Senator Vance.  In a little cabin at the foot of the
mountain, "Uncle Ephraim," as the old negro was familiarly called,
was, as he had been for two or three decades, "living on borrowed time."
How old he was no man could tell.  When in confidential mood, he
would sometimes tell of the troubles he and his old master used to
have with the Tories during the Revolutionary War.

Mr. Vance, in his first race for Congress, having finished his
speech at the cross-roads near by, visited the old man, from whom,
of course, he received a warm welcome.  In reply to the inquiry of
his visitor as to how he was getting along, the old negro slowly

"Mighty po'ly, mighty po'ly, Mause Zeb, mighty po'ly forninst
the things of dis world, but it's all right over yander, over

"What church do you belong to, Uncle Ephraim?" said Vance.

"Well, Mause Zeb, I's a Presbyterian."

"Uncle Ephraim," said Vance with great solemnity, "do you believe in
the doctrine of _election?"_

After a pause and with equal solemnity, the old man responded:
"Mause Zeb, I don't pertend to understand fully the ins and outs
of dat doctrine, but 'cordin' to my understandin', it's de doctrine
of de Bible, and I bleebes it."

"Uncle Ephraim," said Vance, "do you think I have been _elected?"_

"Mause Zeb," said the old man in pathetic tone, "ef it's jest de
same to you, I would a leetle ruther you would wifdraw dat question.
I's poorty ole and gittn' a little too near de grabe to tell a lie,
but de fac am, I bin livin' round in dese parts nigh onto a hundred
years and knowed a heap of de big mens dat's dead and gone, and
I neber yet knowed nor hear tell of no man bein' 'lected, _what
wan't a candidate."_

Like many other orators of his party, Senator Vance found the
position of champion of the Democratic nominee for President in
1872 one of extreme embarrassment.  A story he occasionally
told, however, relieved the situation greatly.  He said:  "My
fellow-citizens, I am somewhat in the position of an old-time
illiterate backwoods preacher, who was with great difficulty able to
read off, after a fashion, one favorite hymn at which his book
always opened at the opportune moment.  One Sunday morning, just
before the beginning of the services, some mischievous boys, not
having the fear of the Lord before their eyes, got hold of the book
and pasted 'Old Grimes' over the favorite hymn.  At the auspicious
moment the book opened at the accustomed place, and the old preacher,
after properly adjusting his glasses, slowly began:  'Old Grimes
is dead, that good old man.'  Amazed beyond description, the preacher
instantly suspended the reading, carefully wiped off his glasses, looked
appealingly to the congregation, and again solemnly and slowly
began:  'Old Grimes is dead, that good old man.'  The congregation
now equally astonished with himself, the aged pastor suspended the
reading, carefully removed his glasses, and laying down the
book, solemnly observed:  'My beloved friends, I have been a-readin'
and a-singin' outen this blessed book for nigh onto forty year,
and I never seed this hymn in thar before; but it's _in thar,_
brethren, and we'll sing it through if it smashes up this meetin!'

"Now," continued Vance, "my beloved brethren, I have been a-readin'
and a-votin' of the Democrat ticket nigh onto forty year, and I
never seed the name of old Horace Greeley on a Democrat ticket
before; but it's _on thar,_ brethren, and we'll vote it through if
it kills us--_and it does come devilish near killing the most of



The "holding" of a _nisi prius_ judge upon one of the western
circuits of Missouri, near the close of the Civil War, is without a
precedent, and it is quite probable that no occasion will ever
arise for citing it as an authority.  It will remain, however, a
case in point of how a "horse-sense" judge can protect the innocent
against unusual and unjust prosecution.

What is known in Missouri history as the "Drake Constitution"
had then but recently supplanted the organic law under which the
State had for a long time had its being.  No counterpart of the
Constitution mentioned has ever been framed in any of the American
States.  It could have been only the product of the evil days when
"judgment had fled to brutish beasts, and men had lost their reason."
Possibly at no time or place in our history has there been more
emphatic verification of the axiom, "In the midst of arms, the laws
are silent."

The "Drake Constitution" was formulated at a time when fierce
passion was at its height, when the sad consequences of civil
war were felt at every fireside, when neighbor was arrayed against
neighbor, the hand of brother uplifted against brother, and "a
man's foes were they of his own household."  As is well known,
certain provisions of this Constitution were, at a later day--upon
a writ of error--set aside by the Supreme Court of the United States
as being in violation of the Federal Constitution.  One of the
thirty distinct affirmations or tests of the Drake Constitution was
to the effect that, if any minister or priest should be guilty of
the crime of preaching the Gospel, or of solemnizing the rite of
marriage, without first having taken an oath to support said
Constitution, he should, upon conviction, be subjected to a fine
of not less than five hundred dollars, imprisonment for six months
in the common jail, or both.

Under the provision indicated, a Catholic priest was convicted
in one of the circuit courts of Missouri, and duly sentenced to
fine and imprisonment.  Upon his appeal, the Supreme Court of
the United States reversed the decision of the lower court, and
virtually abrogated the provision of the Constitution under which the
accused had been convicted.  The great court of last resort decided
the test oath, imposed as above mentioned, to be a violation of
that provision of the Constitution of the United States which
declares, "No State shall pass any bill of attainder, or _ex
post facto_ law."  It held a bill of attainder to be "a legislative
act which inflicts punishment without a judicial trial"; and an
_ex post facto_ law "one which imposes a punishment for an act
which was not punishable at the time it was committed; or imposes
additional punishment to that then prescribed."  The court said:
"The oath thus required is, for its severity, without any precedent
that we can discover.  In the first place, it is retrospective; it
embraces all the past from this day; and if taken years hence,
it will also cover all the intervening period. . . . It allows no
distinction between acts springing from malignant enmity, and acts
which may have been prompted by charity, or affection, or relationship.
. . . The clauses in question subvert the presumption of innocence,
and alter the rules of evidence which heretofore, under the
universally recognized principles of the common law, have been
supposed to be fundamental and unchangeable.  They assume that the
parties are guilty; they call upon the parties to establish
their innocence; and declare that such innocence can only be shown
in one way--by an inquisition in the form of an expurgatory oath
into the consciences of the parties."  And then, as preliminary to
the discharge of the priest from long imprisonment, the court
concluded its opinion with a pertinent question from the writings of
Alexander Hamilton:  "It substitutes for the established and legal
mode of investigating crimes and inflicting forfeitures, one that is
unknown to the Constitution, and repugnant to the genius of our

[*Footnote: Fourth Wallace Reports.]

During the period extending from the promulgation of the Drake
Constitution to the setting aside of some of its obnoxious provisions
as heretofore mentioned, an old-time judge still held court on one
of the Missouri circuits.  He had somehow been overlooked in the
political upheaval to which the State had been subjected.  He
had come down from a former generation, and, unabashed by the clash
of arms, still served sturdily on his wonted way.  The rife spirit
that boded destruction to ancient landmarks had passed him by;
Magna Charta and the Bill of Rights were to him abiding verities.

Now it so fell out that during the period mentioned, while presiding
in one of the border counties of his circuit, he was greatly
astonished, at the opening of his court upon a certain morning, to
find half a dozen ministers of the Gospel, all of whom were personally
known to him, snugly seated in the prisoners' box.

With characteristic brusqueness, the judge at once demanded of the
attorney for the Commonwealth why these men were under arrest.
The not unexpected reply was, that they had been indicted for
preaching without first taking an oath to support the Constitution
of the State of Missouri.

"Ah, Mr. Prosecutor, a very serious offence, a very serious offence
indeed.  The makers of our fundamental law have wisely provided
that no man shall be permitted to preach the Gospel until he has
first taken an oath to support the Constitution of the State of
Missouri.  It is the duty of this court to see to it that this
wholesome provision of our Constitution is duly enforced."

Addressing himself now to the prisoner nearest him, His Honor
inquired:  "Is it possible, sir, that you have been guilty of
the crime of preaching the Gospel without having first taken an
oath to support the Constitution of the State of Missouri?"  The
prisoner, a tall, venerable-appearing gentleman, in typical black,
quietly replied that he could not conscientiously take the required
oath, but had only continued in the pastoral work in which he
had been for a lifetime engaged.

"A mere subterfuge, a mere subterfuge, Mr. Prosecutor," observed
the judge, as with apparent fierceness his eyes were fixed upon
the offender.  "This prisoner cannot be permitted, sir, to interpose
his conscience as a barrier against the enforcement of this salutary
provision of our most excellent Constitution.  He must be punished,
sir, he must be punished."

After reading aloud the penalty imposed for the commission of
the offence mentioned, and with pen in hand as if about to make
the appropriate entry upon the docket, His Honor again turned to
the prisoner and inquired:

"Of what church are you a minister?"  The steady reply, as of
one prepared for the worst, was,

"I am a Presbyterian, Your Honor."

"Presbyterian!  Presbyterian!" quickly observed the sage interpreter
of the law.  "Oh, you preach the tenets and doctrines of the
Presbyterian Church, do you?"  An affirmative reply was modestly

"You preach," continued His Honor in apparent amazement, "the
doctrine of infant baptism, and of the final perseverance of the
saints, do you?"  An answer like the last being given, the judge

"You appear to be a man of intelligence, but don't you know,
sir, that _that_ isn't the Gospel?  He has not been guilty of
preaching the Gospel, Mr. Prosecutor, _and will have to be discharged._
You can go, sir, but if this court ever hears that you have been
actually guilty of preaching _the Gospel,_ you will be punished to
the full extent of the law."

Addressing himself now to the comparatively youthful occupant of
the lately vacated seat, His Honor inquired:

"What is _your_ church, sir?"

In a manner by no means aggressive, and with tones the counterpart
of the humblest that ever came from an Amen corner, the reply was,

"I am a Methodist, may it please the Court."

Eying the prisoner keenly, and with a manner expressive of surprise
to which all that had gone before seemed indifference itself,
his Honor, with apparent difficulty, at length ejaculated:

"A Methodist, a Methodist, Mr. Prosecutor.  Oh, you preach the
doctrine of the Methodist Church, do you?--infant baptism, and
falling from grace?"  To these hurried interrogatories, an affirmative
was meekly but distinctly given.

"Well, don't you know that _that_ isn't the Gospel?  He is not
guilty of preaching the Gospel, Mr. Prosecutor, and will have to
be discharged.  You can go, sir, but if this Court ever learns that
you have been really guilty of preaching the Gospel without
first taking an oath to support the Constitution of the State of
Missouri, you will have to be punished, sir; the Court will see
that there is no evasion of this salutary provision of our most
excellent Constitution.  _Go, sir."_

A clean-shaven, benevolent-looking gentleman of middle age was next
in evidence.  He had but recently assumed his present pastorate
and was a deeply interested and attentive observer of all that was
happening.  In reply to the inquiry from the bench, he answered
that he was a Universalist.

"A Universalist!" replied the judge, almost astounded beyond the
power of expression.  Recovering himself, he at length inquired:

"You preach the doctrine of universal salvation, do you?"

A slight bow indicated such to be the fact.

"You preach," continued his Honor, with warmth well suited to
the subject-matter, "that there is no hell?"

A bow, much more emphatic, was unmistakable evidence that its author
was a man who had the courage of his convictions.

"He doesn't believe that _there is any hell,_ Mr. Prosecutor,"
thundered the judge, "he will have to be discharged; it is no
violation of the Constitution of the State of Missouri to preach
such infernal nonsense as that."

The official admonition, "Depart, sir," was promptly obeyed, and
the apostle of the broad highway followed quickly in the wake of
the aforementioned disciples of Calvin and Wesley, in the "narrow path"
which led straightway out of the crowded court-room.

In rapid succession the two remaining prisoners on the front bench
were questioned, and each in turn found "not guilty" of preaching the
Gospel.  An avowal of his belief in the tenet of "the Apostolic
succession" instantly resulted in the acquittal of the first, while
the second was with equal promptness found "not guilty" upon his
admission that he preached the doctrine of "regeneration by ----"
There was much confusion in the court-room at this moment, and
the reporter failed to catch the concluding words of the confession.
Finding himself, moreover, getting into _deep water,_ he thoughtfully
left on record that both the Episcopalian and the Christian pastor
left the court-room with the admonition ringing in their ears, that
if they were ever actually found guilty _of preaching the Gospel_
they should be duly punished.

A lone prisoner remained in the dock.  The days of the years of
his pilgrimage were not few, and quite probably, except in a
figurative sense, not evil.  He was of sturdy build, quiet manners,
and his countenance was indicative of great sincerity.  In a voice
extremely deferential he stated that he had once ministered to a
dying Confederate, and it was impossible for him to take the required
oath that he had never expressed any sympathy for any person who
had ever been engaged in the Rebellion.

"Of what church are you a minister?" interrupted the judge.

"The Baptist Church," was the answer.

"The Baptist Church," instantly repeated the judge, and looking
very earnestly at the accused, he asked;

"Do you preach the doctrines of the Baptist Church?"

An affirmative answer having been given, His Honor said:

"Upon his own confession he is guilty, Mr. Prosecutor:  the
Court holds the Baptist _to be the true church,_ and this defendant
has been guilty of preaching the Gospel without first taking the
oath to support the Constitution of the State of Missouri.  He will
have to be punished."

Addressing the prisoner, he said:  "You will have to be punished, sir;
this Court can permit no excuse or evasion."

The graveyard stillness that now fell upon the little assemblage
was at length broken by His Honor reading aloud the prescribed
punishment for preaching the Gospel without first having taken the
required oath.

"Yes, a fine of five hundred dollars or six months in the common
jail, _or both._  A clear case, Mr. Prosecutor, this prisoner must
be made an example of; hand me the docket, Mr. Clerk.  Yes, the
full penalty."

Then, before making the fatal entry, suddenly turning to the
prisoner, he demanded:

"How long have you been preaching the Gospel?"

In hardly audible accents, the answer tremblingly given was,

"I have been trying to preach the Gospel ----"

"Only _trying_ to preach the Gospel, only _trying_ to preach the
Gospel!" exclaimed the judge.  "There is no law, Mr. Prosecutor,
against merely _trying_ to preach the Gospel.  You can go, sir;
but if this Court ever hears that you have succeeded in actually
_preaching_ the Gospel, you will be punished, sir!"



On the evening of October 27, 1908, a meeting was held in the Grand
Opera House, Chicago, Illinois, in the interest of the Democratic
candidates in the campaign then pending.  The meeting began a few
minutes after midnight, and the immense audience consisted, in a
large measure, of actors and actresses and their attendants from
the various theatres of the city.

After an eloquent political speech of the Hon. Samuel Alschuler
and a stirring recitation by one of the actors, I was introduced, and
spoke as follows:

"I am grateful for the opportunity under such happy auspices, to
bid you _good-morning._  I would count myself fortunate, indeed,
could I contribute even the smallest mite to the enjoyment of those
who have in such unstinted measure dispensed pleasure to so many
of the human family, to the representatives of a profession which,
struggling up through the centuries, has at last found honored and
abiding place in a broader civilization, a calling whose sublime
mission it is to give surcease to harassing care, to smooth out
the wrinkles from the brow, bring gladness to the eye, to teach that

  'Behind the clouds is the sun still smiling';

in a word, to add to the sum of human happiness.

"It has been my good fortune, in the happy years gone by, to have had
the personal acquaintance of some of the most eminent of your
profession.  Under the witchery of this inspiring presence, 'the
graves of memory render up their dead.'  Again I hear from the lips
of Barrett:  'Take away the sword; States can be saved without it!'
'How love, like death, levels all ranks, and lays the shepherd's
crook beside the sceptre!'

"Who that ever saw Forrest 'sitting as if in judgment upon kings' could
forget that superb presence?  In the silent watches, even yet,
steal upon us in ominous accents the words, 'Put out the light,
and then put out the light!'  Complimented upon the manner in which
he played Lear, he angrily exclaimed:  'Played Lear, played Lear?
I _play_ Hamlet, I _play_ Macbeth, I _play_ Othello; but I _am_
Lear!'  Possibly the art of the tragedian has known no loftier
triumph than in Forrest's rendition of Lear's curse upon the
unnatural daughter:

  'Let it stamp wrinkles in her brow of youth;
  With cadent tears fret channels in her cheeks;
  Turn all her mother's pains and benefits
  To laughter and contempt!'

"A third of a century ago, I made the acquaintance of John McCullough,
then at the very zenith of his fame.  In even measure as was the
elder Booth Richard the Third, Forrest, King Lear, or Edwin Booth,
Hamlet, so was McCullough the born Macbeth.  When I first saw
him emerge with dishevelled hair and bloody hands from the apartment
of the murdered king, I was, I confess, in mortal dread of the
darkness.  I have heard another since of even greater repute in
that masterful impersonation, but with me to the last, John McCullough
will remain the veritable Macbeth.  His are the words that linger:

  'I go, and it is done; the bell invites me,
  Hear it not, Duncan; for it is the knell
  That summons thee to heaven or to hell.'

"Edwin Booth has stepped from the stage of living men, and when in
the tide of time will such a Hamlet again appear?  To him Nature
had been prodigal of her choicest blessings.  Every gift the
gods could bestow to the full equipment of the interpreter, the
actor, the master, was his.

  'He was a man, take him for all in all,
  We shall not look upon his like again.'

Many moons will wax and wane before from other lips, as from
his, will fall:

  'Or that the Everlasting had not fixed
  His canon 'gainst self-slaughter.'

or, giving expression to thoughts from the very depths, which have
in all the ages held back from such dread ending:

  'To die, to sleep;
  To sleep! perchance to dream; aye, there's the rub;
  For in that sleep of death what dreams may come,
  When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
  Must give us pause.'

"The ever-abiding memory that his brother was the real actor in
a tragic scene that gave pause to the world, burdened the heart
and mellowed the tone of Edwin Booth, and no doubt linked him in
closer touch with what has, as by the enchanter's wand, been
portrayed of the 'melancholy Dane.'

"Two years before the assassination of President Lincoln I heard
Wilkes Booth as Romeo at the old McVicker.  The passing years have
not wholly dimmed his

  'Night's candles are burnt out, and jocund day
  Stands tiptoe on the misty mountain-tops,'

and then, as if forecasting a scene to strike horror even in 'States
unborn and in accents yet unknown,' the exclamation:

  'I must be gone and live,
  Or stay and die!'

"High on the list of the world's benefactors write the name of Joe
Jefferson, as one who loved his fellow-men.  Whatever betide,
his fame is secure.  'Age cannot wither'; it was in very truth high
privilege to have known him; to have met him face to face.

"There come moments to all when we gladly put aside the masterpieces
of the great bard, and find solace in simpler lays; such as, it
may be, appear of kinship with the happenings of daily life.
The mighty thoughts of the former unceasingly suggest life's endless
toil and endeavor.

"In words that have touched many hearts our own poet suggests:

  'Read from some humbler poet,
  Whose songs gushed from his heart;
  . . . . . . .
  Such songs have power to quiet
  The restless pulse of care.'

"And so, there are times when the stately rendition of the
masterpieces, even with the greatest tragedians in the role, weary
us, and we give glad welcome to Bob Acres with 'his courage oozing
out at his finger ends,' or to dear old Rip and 'Here's to yourself
and to your family.  Jus' one more; _this one won't count!'_

"The superb acting of Irving in Louis the Eleventh; the grandeur
of Forrest with 'Othello's occupation gone'; of McCullough in
Macbeth, 'supped full with horrors'; even of Booth with the
ever-recurring 'To be, or not to be,' the eternal question, all
pass with the occasion.  But who can forget the gladsome hours
of mingled pathos and mirth with glorious Joe Jefferson, the star!
His life was hourly the illustration of the sublime truth:

  'There is nothing so kingly as kindness.'

"Upon his tablet might truly be written:

  'He never made a brow look dark,
  Nor caused a tear but when he died.'

"It is ever an ungracious task to speak in terms of disparagement of
a lady.  There is one, however, of whom, even in this gracious
presence, I am constrained to speak without restraint.  To the
splendid assemblage before me she was unknown; possibly, however, some
veteran upon this platform may have enjoyed her personal
acquaintance.  I refer to the late Mrs. Macbeth.  I would not be
misunderstood.  My criticism of the conduct of this lady has no
reference to her share in the 'taking off' of the venerable Duncan.
Even barring her gentle interposition, he would long ere this have
'paid his breath to time and mortal custom.'  My cause of complaint
is more serious and far-reaching.  It will be remembered that
her high-placed husband upon a time was the victim of insomnia.
In his wakeful hours, as he tossed upon his couch, he even made
the confession, now of record, that

  'Glamis hath murdered sleep.'

"He apparently drew no comfort from the reflection that his late
benefactor, the murdered king,

  'After life's fitful fever he sleeps well.'

"Burdened with thoughts beyond the reaches of our souls, the
sometimes Thane of Cawdor indulged in an apostrophe to 'the dull
god' which has enduring place in all language:

  'Sleep, that knits up the ravell'd sleave of care
  The death of each day's life, sore labour's bath,
  Balm of hurt minds, great nature's second course,
  Chief nourisher in Life's feast, ----'

"At this crucial moment, came the untimely interruption of Mrs.
Macbeth, demanding of her husband, _'What do you mean?'_

"The spell was broken, and for all time the sublime apostrophe
to sleep unfinished.  What he might next have said, whose lips can
tell?  Words possibly to be spoken by every tongue, to be crystallized
into every language.  Her ill-fated interruption can never be
forgiven.  The practical lesson to be drawn, one for all the ages,
is the peril involved in a wife's _untimely interruption_ of the
wise observations and sage reflections of her husband.

"This coming together to-night may justify the remark that satire upon
the proverbial caution of candidates in expressing an opinion _upon
any subject_ was perhaps never better illustrated than in the
incident now to be related.  Upon a time many years ago, when
approaching the Capitol from Pennsylvania Avenue in company with
my friend Proctor Knott, a tall, solemn-appearing individual
addressed the latter as follows;  'Mr. Knott, I would like to have
your opinion as to which is the best play, "Hamlet" or "Macbeth."'
With a characteristic expression of countenance, Knott, with
deprecatory gesture, slowly replied:

"'My friend, don't ask me that question; I am a politician, a
candidate for Congress, and my district is about equally divided; Hamlet
has his friends down there, and Macbeth has his, and _I will take no
part between them.'_

"This observation recalls an incident of recent occurrence in a
neighboring city.  A friend of mine, a minister of the Gospel--you
will bear in mind that my friends are not _all_ actors--and this
recalls the dilemma of a candidate who, upon inquiry as to the
comparative merits of heaven and its antipode, cautiously declined
to express an opinion, on the ground that _he had friends in
both places_--this minister, upon being installed in a new pastorate,
was almost immediately requested to preach at the funeral of a
prominent member of his congregation.  Unacquainted as he was with
the life of the deceased, he made inquiry as to his last utterances.

"He recalled the last words of Webster, 'I am content'; of John
Quincy Adams, 'This is the last of earth'; and even the cheerless
exclamation of Mirabeau, 'Let my ears be filled with martial music,
crown me with flowers, and thus shall I enter on my eternal sleep.'
Charged with these reflections, and hoping to find the nucleus of a
funeral sermon, the minister made inquiry of the son of the deceased
parishioner, 'What were the last words of your father?'  The unexpected
reply was 'Pap he didn't have _no last words;_ mother she just stayed
by him till he died.'

"And now, my friends, as the curtain falls, my last words to you:

  'Say not Good-night,
  But in some brighter clime
  Bid me Good-morning!'"



One of the must cultured and entertaining gentlemen I have ever
known was the late Gardner Hubbard.  His last years were spent
quietly in Washington, but earlier in life he was an active member
of the Massachusetts bar.

In my conversations with him he related many interesting incidents
of Daniel Webster, with whom he was well acquainted.  In the early
professional life of Hubbard, Mr. Webster was still at the bar;
his speech for the prosecution in the memorable Knapp murder trial
has been read with profound interest by three generations of lawyers.
As a powerful and eloquent discussion of circumstantial evidence, in
all its phases, it scarcely has a parallel; quotations from it have
found their way into all languages.  How startling his description
of the stealthy tread of the assassin upon his victim!  We seem to
stand in the very presence of murder itself:

"Deep sleep had fallen on the destined victim and on all beneath
his roof.  A healthful old man, to whom sleep was sweet, and the
first sound slumbers of the night held him in their soft but strong
embrace.  The assassin enters through the window, already prepared,
into an unoccupied apartment.  With noiseless foot he paces the
lonely hall, half lighted by the moon; he winds up the ascent of
the stairs, and reaches to door of the chamber .... The face of
the innocent sleeper is turned from the murderer, and the beams of
the moon, resting on the gray locks of his aged temple, show him
where to strike.  The fatal blow is given, and the victim
passes, without a struggle, from the repose of sleep to the repose
of death.  The deed is done.  He retreats, retraces his steps to
the window, passes out through it as he came in, and escapes.
He has done the murder.  No eye has seen him, no ear has heard him.
The secret is his own, and it is safe."

The speech throughout shows Webster to have been the perfect master
of the human heart,--of its manifold and mysterious workings.  What
picture could be more vivid than this?

"Such a secret can be safe nowhere.  The whole creation of God has
neither nook nor corner where the guilty can bestow it and say
it is safe.  Not to speak of that eye which pierces through all
disguises and beholds everything as in the splendor of noon,
such secrets of guilt are never safe from detection even by men.
True it is, generally speaking, that murder will out.  True it is,
that Providence hath so ordained, and doth so govern things,
that those who break the great law of Heaven by shedding man's
blood seldom succeed in avoiding discovery.  Meantime the guilty
soul cannot keep its own secret.  It is false to itself; or rather,
it feels an irresistible impulse of conscience to be true to itself.
It labors under its guilty possession, and knows not what to do
with it.  The human heart was not made for the residence of such
an inhabitant."

The closing sentences of the speech--which resulted in the conviction
and execution of the prisoner--will endure in our literature
unsurpassed as an inspiration to duty:

"There is no evil that we cannot either face or fly from but the
consciousness of duty disregarded.  A sense of duty pursues us
ever.  It is omnipresent like the Deity.  If we take to ourselves the
wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the
sea, duty performed, or duty violated, is still with us, for our
happiness or our misery.  If we say, 'the darkness shall cover us,'
in the darkness as in the light our obligations are yet with us.
We cannot escape their power, nor fly from their presence.  They
are with us in this life, will be with us at its close; and in that
scene of inconceivable solemnity which lies yet farther onward, we
shall still find ourselves surrounded by the consciousness of duty,
to pain us wherever it has been violated, and to console us so far
as God may have given us grace to perform it."

Upon one occasion, when in Boston, Mr. Hubbard and I visited together
Faneuil Hall.  He pointed out the exact place upon the platform
where he saw Mr. Webster stand when he delivered his speech in
vindication of his course in remaining in the Cabinet of President
Tyler after all his Whig colleagues had resigned.  The schism in
the Whig ranks, occasioned by the veto of party measures, paramount
in the Presidential contest of 1840, and the bitter antagonism
thereby engendered between Henry Clay and President Tyler, will
readily be recalled.  The rupture mentioned occasioned the retirement
of the entire Cabinet appointed by the late President Harrison,
except Mr. Webster, the Secretary of State.  His reasons for
remaining were in the highest degree patriotic, and his speech
in Faneuil Hall a triumphant vindication.  The enduring public
service he rendered while in a Cabinet with which he had not partisan
affiliation was formulating, in conjunction with the British
Minister, the Ashburton treaty.  If Mr. Webster had rendered no
other public service, this alone would have entitled him to the
gratitude of the country.  This treaty, advantageous from so
many points of view to the United States, adjusted amicably the
protracted and perilous controversy--unsettled by the convention
at Ghent--of our northeastern boundary, and possibly prevented a
third war between the two great English-speaking nations.  The
words once uttered of Burke could never with truth be spoken of
Webster:  "He gave to party that which was intended for his

Mr. Hubbard insisted that the speech mentioned stood unrivalled in
the realm of sublime oratory.  He declared that the intervening
years had not dimmed his recollection of the appearance of "the
God-like Webster" when he exclaimed "The Whig party die!  The Whig
party die!  Then, Mr. President, _where shall I go?"_

Some years before, I heard Wendell Phillips allude to the above
speech in his celebrated lecture upon Daniel O'Connell.  He said, when
the startling words, "Then, Mr. President, where shall I go?" fell
from the lips of the mighty orator, a feeling of awe pervaded
the vast assemblage; something akin to an awful foreboding that
the world would surely come to an end when there was no place in
it for Daniel Webster.

This seems a fitting place to allude to possibly the highest tribute
ever paid by one great orator to another--in the loftiest sense,
a tribute of genius to genius.  Mr. Hubbard told me he was one
of the immense audience gathered in Faneuil Hall to ratify the
nomination of Harrison and Tyler soon after the adjournment of the
Whig National Convention in 1840.  Edward Everett presided; and
among the speakers were Winthrop, Choate, Webster, and the gifted
Sargent S. Prentiss of Mississippi.  The eloquence of the last
named was a proverb in his day.  He had but recently delivered a
speech in the House, vindicating his right to his seat as a
Representative from Mississippi, which cast a spell over all who
heard it, and which has come down to the present generation as one
of the masterpieces of oratory.  The closing sentence of this
wondrous speech--a thousand times quoted--was:  "Deny her representation
upon this floor; then, Mr. Speaker, strike from yonder escutcheon the
star that glitters to the name of Mississippi--and leave only
the stripe, fit emblem of her degradation!"

Upon the conclusion of Prentiss's Faneuil Hall speech, just mentioned,
amidst a tumult of applause such as even Faneuil Hall had rarely
witnessed, Mr. Everett, turning to Mr. Webster, inquired:  "Did
you ever hear the equal of that speech?"  "Never but once," was
the deep-toned reply, "and then from Prentiss himself."

Judge Baldwin, his long-time associate at the bar of Mississippi, has
given a vivid description of the effect of the power of Mr. Prentiss
before the jury in the prosecution of a noted highwayman and murderer
in that State:

"Phelps was one of the most daring and desperate of ruffians.
He fronted his prosecutor and the court not only with composure,
but with scornful and malignant defiance.  When Prentiss arose
to speak, and for some time afterwards, the criminal scowled upon him
a look of hate and insolence.  But when the orator, kindling with his
subject, turned upon him and poured down a stream of burning
invective like lava upon his head; when he depicted the villainy
and barbarity of his bold atrocities; when he pictured, in dark
and dismal colors, the fate which awaited him, and the awful judgment
to be pronounced at another Bar upon his crimes when his soul be
confronted with his innocent victims; when he fixed his gaze of
concentrated power upon him, the strong man's face relaxed; his
eyes faltered and fell; until, at length, unable to bear up
under self-conviction, he hid his head beneath the bar, and exhibited
a picture of ruffianly audacity cowed beneath the spell of true
courage and triumphant genius."

In his early practice in Mississippi, in closing a touching and
eloquent appeal to the jury on behalf of a client whose life was
trembling in the balance, Prentiss said:

"I have somewhere read that when God in His eternal councils
conceived the thought of man's creation, he called to him the three
ministers who wait constantly upon the throne, Justice, Truth, and
Mercy, and thus addressed them:

"'Shall we make man?'

"Then said Justice, 'O God, make him not, for he will trample upon
Thy laws.'

"Truth made answer also, 'O God, make him not, for he will pollute
Thy sanctuaries.'

"Then Mercy, dropping upon her knees and looking up through her
tears, exclaimed, 'O God, make him.  I will watch over him through
all the dark paths he may have to tread.'

"Then God made man and said to him:  'Thou art the child of Mercy;
_go and deal in mercy with thy brother.'"_

In speaking of Mr. Webster's marvellous power over a jury, Mr.
Hubbard told me that he was present during the trial of a once
celebrated divorce case in one of the courts of Boston.  The husband
was the complainant, and the alleged ground the one of recognized
sufficiency in all countries.  Mr. Webster was the counsel for the
husband; Rufus Choate for the wife.  As an advocate, the latter has had
few equals, no superiors, at the American bar.  In the case mentioned,
with a distressed woman for a client, what was dearer than life, her
reputation, in the balance, it may well be believed that the wondrous
powers of the advocate were in requisition to the utmost.

At the conclusion of Choate's speech, as Mr. Hubbard assured me,
the case of the injured husband appeared hopeless.  It seemed
impossible that such a speech could be successfully answered.

The opening sentence, in deep and measured tones, of Webster in
reply, the prelude to an unrivalled argument and to victory, was:

"Saint Paul in the twenty-fourth verse of the seventh chapter of
his wondrous Epistle to the Romans says:  'O wretched man that I
am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?'  You alone,
gentlemen, can deliver this wretched man _from the body of this
dead woman!"_

What in word-painting can exceed the following from an address
by Robert G. Ingersoll?

"A little while ago, I stood by the grave of the old Napoleon--a
magnificent tomb of gilt and gold, almost fit for a dead deity--
and gazed upon the sarcophagus of black Egyptian marble where rest
the ashes of that restless man.  I leaned over the balustrade
and thought about the career of the greatest soldier of the modern

"I saw him walking upon the banks of the Seine contemplating suicide.
I saw him at Toulon; I saw him putting down the mob in the streets
of Paris; I saw him at the head of the army in Italy; I saw him
crossing the bridge at Lodi with the tricolor in his hand; I saw
him in Egypt in the shadow of the Pyramids; I saw him conquer
the Alps and mingle the eagles of France with the eagles of the
crags; I saw him at Marengo, at Ulm, and at Austerlitz; I saw him in
Russia, where the infantry of the snow and the cavalry of the wild
blast scattered his legions like winter's withered leaves; I saw
him at Leipsic in defeat and disaster--driven by a million bayonets
back upon Paris--clutched like a wild beast--banished to Elba.
I saw him escape and retake an empire by the force of his genius.
I saw him upon the frightful field of Waterloo, where Chance and
Fortune combined to wreck the fortunes of their former king, and
I saw him at St. Helena, with his hands crossed behind him, gazing
out upon the sad and solemn sea.

"I thought of the orphans and widows he had made, of the tears that
had been shed for his glory, and of the only woman who ever loved him,
pushed from his heart by the cold hand of ambition; and I said I
would rather have been a French peasant and worn wooden shoes; I
would rather have lived in a hut with a vine growing over the door,
and the grapes growing purple in the rays of the autumn sun; I
would rather have been that poor peasant with my loving wife by my
side, knitting as the day died out of the sky, with my children
about my knee and their arms about me; I would rather have been
that man and gone down to the tongueless silence of the dreamless dust,
than have been that imperial impersonation of force and murder."

In his eloquent eulogy upon Abraham Lincoln, my neighbor and friend,
Hon. Isaac N. Phillips, said:

"He lived with Nature and learned of her.  He toiled, but his toil
was never hopeless and degrading.  His feet were upon the earth
but the stars shining in perennial beauty were ever above him to
inspire contemplation.  He heard the song of the thrush, and the
carol of the lark.  He watched the sun in its course.  He knew the
dim paths of the forest, and his soul was awed by the power of the

The closing sentences of Senator Ingalls's tribute to a departed
colleague were sombre indeed:

"In the democracy of Death all men are equal.  There is neither
rank, nor station, nor prerogative, in the republic of the grave.
At that fatal threshold the philosopher ceases to be wise, and the
song of the poet is silent.  There Dives relinquished his riches
and Lazarus his rags; the creditor loses his usury, and the debtor
is acquitted of his obligation; the proud man surrenders his dignity,
the politician his honors, the worldling his pleasures.  Here
the invalid needs no physician, and the laborer rests from unrequited
toil.  Here at last is Nature's final decree of equity.  The wrongs
of time are redressed, and injustice is expiated.  The unequal
distribution of wealth and honor, capacity, pleasure, and opportunity,
which makes life so cruel and inexplicable a tragedy, ceases in
the realms of Death.  The strongest has there no supremacy, and
the weakest needs no defence.  The mightiest captain succumbs to
the invincible adversary who disarms alike the victor and the

In his day Edward Everett was the most gifted of American orators.
His style, however, to readers in "these piping times of peace,"
seems a trifle stilted.  What orator of the twentieth century would
attempt such a sentence as the following from Everett's celebrated
eulogy upon Washington:

"Let us make a national festival and holiday of his birthday;
and ever, as the twenty-second of February returns, let us remember
that, while with these solemn and joyous rites of observance we
celebrate the great anniversary, our fellow-citizens on the Hudson,
on the Potomac, from the Southern plains to the Western lakes, are
engaged in the same offices of gratitude and love.  Nor we, nor
they alone; beyond the Ohio, beyond the Mississippi, along that
stupendous trail of immigration from the East to the West,
which, bursting into States as it moves westward, is already
threading the Western prairies, swarming through the portals of
the Rocky Mountains and winding down their slopes, the name and
the memory of Washington on that gracious night will travel with
the silver queen of heaven through sixty degrees of longitude, nor
part company with her till she walks in her brightness through the
Golden Gate of California, and passes serenely to hold midnight
court with her Australian stars.  There and there only in barbarous
archipelagos, as yet untrodden by civilized man, the name of
Washington is unknown; and there, too, when they swarm with
enlightened millions, new honors shall be paid with ours to his

In my judgment the greatest living orator is William J. Bryan.
I have never known a more gifted man.  A thorough scholar--having like
Lord Bacon taken all knowledge for his province--a fearless champion
of what he deems the right, he is in the loftiest sense "without
fear and without reproach."

In introducing him to an immense audience in Bloomington when he
was first a candidate for the Presidency, I said:

"The National Democracy in the Chicago convention selected for the
Presidency a distinguished statesman of the great Northwest.
For the first time in more than one hundred years of our history, a
candidate for the great office has been taken from a State lying
west of the Mississippi.

"In the nomination of our standard-bearer, the convention builded better
than it knew.  Each passing hour has but emphasized the wisdom
of its choice.  Truly it has been said:  'When the times demand
the man, the man appears.'  The times demanded a great leader--the
great leader has appeared!  His campaign is the marvel of the age.
From the Atlantic seaboard, two thousand miles to the westward,
his eloquent words have cheered the despondent, given new hopes and
aspirations to the people, touched the hearts of millions of his
countrymen.  In advocating his election we have kept the faith.
We have not departed from the teachings of our fathers.  We sacredly
preserve the ancient landmarks--the landmarks of all previous
Democratic conventions."

Rarely has a speech been uttered so effective in its immediate
results as that of Mr. Bryan in the Democratic National Convention
of 1896.  The occasion was one never to be forgotten.  When Mr.
Bryan began his speech he had not been mentioned as a candidate
for the Presidency; at its close there was no other candidate.
The closing sentences of the memorable speech were:

"Our ancestors, when but three millions in number, had the courage
to declare their political independence of every other nation;
shall we, their descendants, when we have grown to seventy millions,
declare that we are less independent than our forefathers?  No, my
friends, that will never be the verdict of our people.  Therefore,
we care not upon what lines the battle is fought.  If they say
bimetallism is good, but that we cannot have it until other nations
help us, we reply that, instead of having a gold standard
because England has, we will restore bimetallism, and then let
England have bimetallism because the United States has it.  If they
dare to come out in the open field and defend the gold standard as
a good thing, we will fight them to the uttermost.  Having behind us
the productive masses of this nation and the world, supported by the
commercial interests, the laboring interests, and the toilers
everywhere, we will answer their demand for a gold standard by
saying to them:  'You shall not press down upon the brow of labor this
crown of thorns, you shall not crucify mankind upon a cross of

The closing sentences of his "Prince of Peace" have been read in
all languages:

"But this Prince of Peace promises not only peace but strength.
Some have thought His teachings fit only for the weak and the timid
and unsuited to men of vigor, energy, and ambition.  Nothing could
be farther from the truth.  Only the man of faith can be courageous.
Confident that he fights on the side of Jehovah, he doubts not the
success of his cause.  What matters it whether he shares in the
shouts of triumph?  If every word spoken in behalf of truth has
its influence and every deed done for the right weighs in the final
account, it is immaterial to the Christian whether his eyes behold
victory or whether he dies in the midst of the conflict.

  'Yea, though thou lie upon the dust,
  When they who helped thee flee in fear,
  Die full of hope and manly trust,
  Like those who fell in battle here.
  Another hand thy sword shall wield,
  Another hand the standard wave,
  Till from the trumpet's mouth is pealed
  The blast of triumph o'er thy grave.'

"Only those who believe attempt the seemingly impossible and, by
attempting, prove that one with God can chase a thousand and two
can put ten thousand to flight.  I can imagine that the early
Christians who were carried into the arena to make a spectacle for
those more savage than the beasts, were entreated by their doubting
companions not to endanger their lives.  But, kneeling in the centre
of the arena, they prayed and sang until they were devoured.
How helpless they seemed and, measured by every human rule, how
hopeless was their cause!  And yet within a few decades the
power which they invoked proved mightier than the legions of the
emperor, and the faith in which they died was triumphant o'er
all that land.  It is said that those who went to mock at their
sufferings returned asking themselves, 'What is it that can enter into
the heart of man and make him die as these die?'  They were greater
conquerors in their death than they could have been had they
purchased life by a surrender of their faith.

"What would have been the fate of the Church if the early Christians
had had as little faith as many of our Christians now have?  And, on
the other hand, if the Christians of to-day had the faith of the
martyrs, how long would it be before the fulfilment of the prophecy
that every knee shall bow and every tongue confess?

"Our faith should be even stronger than the faith of those who
lived two thousand years ago, for we see our religion spreading
and supplanting the philosophies and creeds of the Orient.

"As the Christian grows older he appreciates more and more the
completeness with which Christ fills the requirements of the heart
and, grateful for the peace which he enjoys and for the strength
which he has received, he repeats the words of the great scholar, Sir
William Jones:

  'Before thy mystic altar, heavenly truth,
  I kneel in manhood, as I knelt in youth.
  Thus let me kneel, till this dull form decay,
  And life's last shade be brightened by thy ray.'"



Some years ago, I spent a few weeks of inclement weather in a
beautiful village in southern Georgia.  Upon calling at his office
to renew my acquaintance with a well-known lawyer, he soon invited
in the remaining members of the local bar.  Everything was propitious,
and the conversation never for a moment flagged, many experiences
of the legal practitioners of the South and of the North being
related with happy effect.

I at length remarked that since my arrival, I had, somewhat to
my surprise, learned that "local option" had been adopted in their
county.  An aged brother, in a tone by no means exultant, assured me
that such was the fact.  I then observed that I was not a hard
drinker, but being a total stranger and liable to sudden sickness,
I asked what I would do under such circumstances.

An equally venerable brother, who bore the unique title of "Colonel,"
slowly responded, "Have to do without, sir, _have to do without;_ not
a drop to be had in the county, absolutely not a drop, sir."

The brief silence which followed this announcement was broken by
the corroborative testimony of a more youthful associate of similar
official distinction, and a genial and hospitable expression of
countenance, somehow suggesting memories of old cognac.

"Yes, sir, the use of spirituous liquors is now only a tradition
with us; but I have heard my father say, that before the war,
the indulgence in such hospitality was not uncommon among

At the conclusion of still further cumulative testimony of the same
tenor, I remarked that something about the general situation reminded
me of an incident that occurred in a State far to the north while the
"Maine Law" was in operation.

A dilapidated-looking pedestrian, with a pack on his back, early
one afternoon of a hot July day pulled up in front of the post-office
in a small village in the interior of Maine.  Humbly addressing
a citizen who was just coming out with his copy of the _Weekly
Tribune_ in hand, he inquired,

"Where can I get a drink?"

"The Maine Law is in force," was the reply, "and it is impossible for
you to get a drink in the State."

The heart of the wayfarer sank within him.

"Would you let a man die right here on your streets, for lack of
a drink?"

The "better angel" of the citizen being touched thereat, he replied,

"My friend, I am very sorry for you, but no liquor is ever sold
here, except by the apothecary, and then only as a medicine."

Upon further inquiry, the important fact was disclosed that the
shop of the apothecary was three-quarters of a mile away, on the
left-hand side of the road.  With an alacrity indicating something
of hope, the pedestrian immediately gathered up his pack, and
through the dust and heat at length reached the designated place.
Sinking apparently exhausted upon the door-step, he feebly requested
the man behind the counter to let him have something to drink.  The
immediate reply of the apothecary was that the Maine Law was in
force, and no spirituous liquors could be sold except upon the
prescription of a physician.  After earnest inquiry, it was
ascertained that the nearest doctor's office was one mile away,
and the man with the pack again betook himself to the weary highway.
Returning an hour later, in tone more pitiful than before, he begged
the apothecary, as he hoped for mercy himself, to let him have a
drink.  Upon inquiry as to whether he had procured the required
certificate, he said, "No, the doctor wouldn't give me any."

The assurance of the apothecary that the case appeared hopeless
only added to the distress of the poor man, whose sands seemed now
indeed to be running low.

Stirred to the depths by the agony of his visitor, the apothecary at
length said,

"My friend, I would be glad to help you, but it is impossible for me
to let you have a drink of spirituous liquor unless you have a
doctor's certificate _or have been snake-bit."_

At the last-mentioned suggestion, the face of the man of
repeated disappointments measurably brightened, and he eagerly
inquired where he could find a snake.  The now sympathetic man
of bottles told him to follow the main road three miles to the
forks, and then a few hundred yards to the west, and he would find
a small grove of decayed tress, where there still lingered a few
snakes, and by the exercise of a reasonable degree of diligence he
might manage _to get bit,_ and thereby lay the foundation for
the desired relief.  With bundle again in place, and evincing a
buoyancy of manner to which he had been a stranger for many hours,
the traveller resumed the quest.

Hours later, when the shadows had lengthened, and the fire-flies
were glistening in the distance,

  "With a look so piteous in purport,
  As if he had been loosed out of hell
  To speak of horrors,"

he re-entered the apothecary's shop, threw down his bundle, and in
tones suggestive of the agony of lost souls, again begged for a

"Did you get snake-bit?" was the feeling inquiry of the man at the

"No," was the heart-rending reply, _"every snake I met had engagements
six months ahead, for all the bites he could furnish!"_



Soon after my nomination for the Vice-Presidency, in 1892, I attended
a barbecue at the Blue Spring, a stone's throw from my father's
old home in Kentucky.  This was in the county of Christian, in the
southwestern part of the State.  It is a large and wealthy county,
its tobacco product probably exceeding that of any other county in
the United States.

Christian County was the early home of men distinguished in the
field, at the bar, and in the State and National councils.
Hopkinsville, the county-seat, had been the home of Stites, the
learned Chief Justice of the Court of Appeals; of Jackson, who fell
while gallantly leading his command at the battle of Perryville;
of Morehead, an early and distinguished Governor of the Commonwealth;
of Sharp, whose legal acumen would have secured him distinction at
any bar; of McKenzie, whose wit and eloquence made him the long-time
idol and the Representative in Congress, of the famed "Pennyrile"
district; of Bristow, the accomplished Secretary of the Treasury
during the administration of President Grant; of the Henry brothers,
three of whom, from different States, were at a later day Representatives
in Congress, and one the Whig candidate against Andrew Johnson for
Governor of Tennessee.

Hon. Gustavus A. Henry, well known as the "Eagle Orator of Tennessee,"
was the Whig candidate for Governor of the State in opposition
to Andrew Johnson, at a later day President of the United States.
The latter was at the time an old-fashioned, steady-going mountain
orator with none of the brilliancy of his gifted antagonist.  At
the close of a series of joint debates Johnson said:  "This speech
terminates our joint debates.  I have now encountered the 'Eagle
Orator' upon every stump in the State, and come out of the contest
with no flesh of mine in his claws--no blood of mine upon his beak."
To which Henry instantly replied:  "The eagle--the proud bird of
freedom--never wars upon a corpse!"

A few miles from the Blue Spring, in the same county, were the
early homes of Senator Roger Q. Mills of Texas, Governor John M.
Palmer of Illinois, and Jefferson Davis of the Southern Confederacy.
Less than a score of miles to the southward, upon the banks of the
Cumberland in Tennessee, stood historic Fort Donelson; while a few
hours' journey to the northward stands the monument which marks
the birthplace of Abraham Lincoln.

Following the earliest westward trail from Iredell County, North
Carolina, across the Blue Ridge Mountains, for a great distance
along the banks of the romantic French Broad my grandfathers,
"Scotch-Irish Presbyterians," James Stevenson and Adlai Ewing, with
their immediate families and others of their kindred, had in the
early days of the century, after a long and perilous journey,
finally reached the famous Spring already mentioned.  Near by,
their tents were pitched, and in time permanent homes established in
the then wilderness of southwestern Kentucky.

The first public building constructed was of logs, with puncheon
floor, and set apart to the double purpose of school-house and
church for the use of all denominations.  Its site was near the
spot where the speaker's stand was now erected for the barbecue
which I have mentioned.

From the pulpit of this rude building, the early settlers had more
than once listened spell-bound to the eloquence of Peter Cartwright,
Henry B. Bascom, Nathan L. Rice, Finis Ewing, and Alexander

In this old church the time-honored custom was for some one of its
officers to line out the hymn, two lines at a time, and then lead the
singing, in which the congregation joined.  Among my earliest
recollections is that of my uncle, Squire McKenzie, one of the best
of men, standing immediately in front of the pulpit, and faithfully
discharging this important duty after the hymn had been read in
full by the minister.  I distinctly recall the solemn tones in
which, upon communion occasions, he lined out, in measured and
mellow cadence, the good old hymn beginning:

  "'T was on that dark, that doleful night,
  When powers of earth and hell arose."

Mr. Sawyer, too, the old-time singing-school teacher, has honored place
in my memory.  Once a month, in the old church, the singing-school
class of which we were all members regularly assembled.  The school
was in four divisions, Bass, Tenor, Counter, and Treble; each member
was provided with a copy of the "Missouri Harmony," with "fa,"
"sol," "la," "mi," appearing in mysterious characters upon every
page; the master, magnifying his office, as with tuning-fork in
hand he stood proudly in the midst, raised the tune, and as it
progressed smiled or deeply frowned upon each of the divisions
as occasion seemed to require.  His voice has long been hushed,
but I seem again to hear his cheery command, "Attention, class!
Utopia, page one hundred!"

Looking back through the long vista of years, it is my honest belief
that such singing as his, at home or abroad, I have never heard.
Upon his tablet might appropriately have been inscribed:

  "Sleep undisturbed within this sacred shrine,
  Till angels wake thee with notes like thine."

To this old field school came in the early time the "scholars" for
many miles around.  It was in very truth the only Alma Mater,
for that generation, of almost the entire southern portion of
the county.  My father in his boyhood attended this school, as did
his kinsmen, John W. and Fielding N. Ewing; the last named of whom
was, at a much later period, the pastor of the First Presbyterian Church
of Bloomington, Illinois, and his elder brother was the Mayor of
that city.

At that early day, and later when I attended the same school, there
were no salaries provided for the teachers,  The schoolmaster
visited the families within reasonable distance of the schoolhouse
with his subscription paper, and the school was duly opened when
a sufficient number of pupils had subscribed.

The ways of the old field school and the methods of the old-time
teachers belong now to the past.  Once experienced, however,
they have an abiding place in the memory.  The master, upon his
accustomed perch near the spacious fire-place, with his ever-present
symbol of authority, the rod--which even Solomon would have considered
fully up to the orthodox standard--in alarming proximity; the boys
"making their manners" by scraping the right foot upon the floor
and bowing low as they entered the school-room; the girls upon like
occasions equally faithful in the practice of a bewitching
little "curtsey" which only added to their charms; the "studying
aloud," the hum of the school-room being thereby easily heard a
mile or two away; the timid approach to the dreaded master with
the humble request that he would "mend a pen," "parse a verb,"
or "do a sum."

An hour, called recess, was given for the dinner from the
baskets brought from home, and then the glorious old games, marbles,
town-ball, and "bull pen," to the heart's content!  At the sound
of the ominous command, "Books!" each scholar promptly resumed his
seat, the merry shout of the playground at once giving way to
the serious business of "saying lessons."  In those good old days,
the slightest act of omission or commission upon the part of the
pupil was confronted with a terrible condition instead of a harmless
theory.  In very truth the uncomfortable effect of the punishment
unfailingly administered--"doing his duty to your parents," as the petty
school-room tyrant was wont to observe--was in small degree lessened
by the comforting assurance that the victim "would thank him for
it the longest day he lived!"

Then, to crown all, came the debating society, with the schoolmaster
presiding, and the entire neighborhood, sweethearts and all, in
attendance, and the boys for the first time testing their oratorical
powers.  Vigilant preparations having been made for the discussion
of such momentous questions as:  "Which deserves the most
credit, Columbus for discovering America, or Washington for defending
it?" or "Which brings the greatest happiness to mankind, pursuit
or possession?"

In "Georgia Scenes" is an amusing account of a debate in a backwoods
"Academy" nearly a century ago.  The two brightest boys, after
anxious preparation, succeeded in formulating for debate a question
utterly meaningless, but which appeared upon hurried reading to
touch the very bed-rock of human government.  The "conspirators"
mentioned were the respective leaders in the debate which closed the
public exercises of the annual "Exhibition" of the Academy.  The
leaders had made careful preparation for the contest, and appeared
fully to understand the question, and each in turn highly complimented
the able argument of his rival.  Much amusement was caused by
the remaining speakers, when called in order, who candidly admitted
that they didn't understand the question, and patiently submitted
to the fine imposed by the rules of the Society.  That a boy of but
mediocre talents should have failed to participate in the debate, will
not be considered remarkable when the question is stated:  "Whether,
in public elections, the vote of faction should prevail by internal
suggestions, _or the bias of jurisprudence?"_

The late General Gordon related to me the above incident, and added
that the leaders mentioned were at a later day well known to the
country, one the learned Bishop Longstreet of Georgia, the other
the eloquent Senator McDuffie of South Carolina.

Events almost forgotten, forms long since vanished, were vividly
recalled as, after long absence, I revisited the spot inseparably blended
with the joyous associations of childhood.  The platform from which
I was to speak had been erected near the ruins of the old church
above mentioned, of which my grandfather had been a ruling elder, my
father, mother, and other kindred the earliest members.

Upon my introduction to the vast assemblage--the good things
suggested by "barbecue" having meanwhile given to all an abundant feeling
of contentment--I began by brief reference to the pleasure I
experienced in again visiting, after the passing of the years which
separated childhood from middle age, scenes once so familiar,
and meeting face to face so many of my early associates and friends,
and remarked, that in the early days in Illinois the not unusual
reply of the Kentucky emigrant, when asked what part of the Old
Commonwealth he came from was, "From the Blue Grass," or "From near
Lexington," but that my invariable answer to that inquiry had even
been, "From the Pennyrile!"

Some mention I made of Mr. Caskie, the dreaded school-master of
the long ago, caused a momentary commotion in the audience, and
immediately a man of white hairs and bowed by the weight of more
than fourscore years, was lifted to the front of the platform.
With arm about my neck, he earnestly inquired:  "Adlai, I came
twenty miles to hear you speak; don't you remember me?"  The audience
apparently appreciated the instant reply:  "Yes, Mr. Caskie, _I
still have a few marks left to remember you by!"_

The venerable and long ago forgiven schoolmaster was fearfully
deaf, and to prevent the possibility of a single word escaping him,
he stood close beside me, and with his hand behind his ear and the
other resting tenderly on my shoulder, faithfully followed me in
my journeyings to and fro across the stage during the two-hours'
speech which followed.

My speech at length concluded, I was warmly greeted by scores of
old neighbors and friends.  Just forty years had passed since my
father had removed his family to Illinois, and it may well be
believed that it was difficult to recall promptly all the names
and faces of those I had known in childhood.  Even a candidate has,
at such times, "some rights under the Constitution"; one of which,
I honestly believe, is total exemption from the tormenting
inquiries:  "Do you know me?  Well, what is my name?"  The laurels,
even of Job, had he ever been a candidate, would probably have
turned to willows.

I am here reminded of an experience of one of my early competitors
for Congress.  It was his happy forte to remember instantly all
his old acquaintances; not only that, but to know their full names.
To call out in friendly and familiar tone, in and out of season,
"Bill," "Dick," "Sam," "Bob," a hundred times a day, was as natural
to him as to breathe.

Upon one occasion, however, the fates seemed slightly untoward.
At the close of one of our joint debates, in the southern part
of the district, he was greeted by a demure-looking individual with
the salutation, "How are you, Judge?"

"My dear sir," exclaimed the regular candidate, grasping the
interrogator warmly by the hand, "how are you, and how is the
old lady?"

"I am not married, Judge," was the deliberate response, as of
one assuming the entire responsibility.

"Certainly not, certainly not, my dear sir; I meant you mother.
How is that excellent old lady?"

"My mother has been dead twenty years, Judge," was the mournful

A trifle embarrassed, but not entirely off his base, the judge
looked earnestly into the face of the bereaved, and said:

"My friend, excuse me, your countenance is perfectly familiar to
me, but I do not at this moment remember exactly who you are."

The response was, "Judge, _I am an evangelist."_

To which the candidate for Congress, now upon a firm footing, tapped
the man of the sacred office familiarly upon the shoulder and
cheerfully exclaimed, "Why, damn it, _Van,_ I thought I ought to
know you!"

Returning now for brief sojourn to the afore-mentioned barbecue,
with a faithful kinsman as monitor, aided by a slight moiety of
tact to be credited to personal account, I managed passably well
to get through the trying ordeal.  "The old gentleman with the long
white beard, coming toward us," observed my monitor, "is Uncle Jake
Anderson.  He has a hat bet that you will know him."  Thus advised,
I was ready for trial, and warmly grasping the hand extended me,
I earnestly inquired, "Uncle Jake, _how are you?"_  "Do you know
me, boy?" was the immediate response.  "Know you?" I replied.  "You
and my father were near neighbors for years; how could I help
knowing you?"  "Yes, of course," he said, "but you being gone so
long, and now running for President, I didn't know but what you
had forgotten all about the old neighbors down on the Lick."
Assuring him that I had forgotten none of them, and congratulating
him upon the hat he had won, I passed on to the next.

The interview described was repeated with slight variations,
many times, when my attendant remarked:

"That man leaning against the tree is John Dunloe; do you remember

"Certainly," I replied, "I went to school with him."

Immediately approaching my early classmate I took him by the hand and
said, "How are you, John?"

"Why, Adlai, do you know me?" was the prompt response.

"Know you," said I, "didn't we go to school together to Mr. Caskie
right here at Blue Water, when we were boys?"

"Yas, of course we did," slowly answered by sometime school-fellow,
"but you been 'sociatin' with them big fellows down about Washington
so long, that I didn't know but what you had forgot us poor fellows
down in the Pennyrile."

Assuring him that I never forgot my old friends, I inquired, "John,
where is your brother Bill?"

"He's here," was the instant reply.  "Me and Bill started before
daylight to get to this barbecue in time.  Bill 'lowed _he'd ruther
go forty miles on foot to hear you make a speech, than go to a


[*Footnote: Speech delivered by Mr. Stevenson at a banquet of
the United Irish Societies of Chicago, September, 1900.]


I accepted with pleasure the invitation to meet with you.  For the
courtesy so generously extended me I am profoundly grateful.

Within late years it has been my privilege to visit Ireland; and
I can truly say that no country in Europe possessed for me a deeper
interest than the little island about whose name clusters so much of
romance and of enchantment.  I saw Ireland in its beauty and its
gloom; in its glory and in its desolation.  I stood upon the Giant's
Causeway, one of the grand masterpieces of the Almighty; I visited
the historic parks and deserted legislative halls of venerated
Dublin; threaded the streets and byways of the quaint old city
of Cork; listened the bells of Shandon; sailed over the beautiful
lakes of Killarney, and gazed upon the old castles of Muckross and
of Blarney, whose ivy-covered ruins tell of the far-away centuries.
What a wonderful island!  The birthplace of wits, of warriors,
of statesmen, of poets, and of orators.  Of its people it has been
truly said:  "They have fought successfully the battles of every
country but their own."

Upon occasion such as this, the Irishman--to whatever spot in this
wide world he may have wandered--lives in the shadow of the past.
In imagination he is once more under the ancestral roof; the
vine-clad cottage is again a thing of reality.  Again he wears the
shamrock; again he hears the songs of his native land, while his
heart is stirred by memories of her wrongs and of her glory.

What a splendid contribution Ireland has made to the world's galaxy
of great men!  In the realm of poetry, Goldsmith and Tom Moore; of
oratory, Sheridan, Emmett, Grattan, O'Connell, Burke, and in later
years Charles Stewart Parnell, whose thrilling words I heard a
third of a century ago, pleading the cause of his oppressed

The obligation of America to Ireland for men who have aided in
fighting her battles and framing her laws cannot be measured by
words.  In the British possessions to the northward, in the old
city of Quebec, there is one spot dear to the American heart--that
where fell the brave Montgomery, fighting the battles of his adopted
country.  What schoolboy is not familiar with the story of gallant
Phil Sheridan and "Winchester twenty miles away?"  Illinoisans will
never forget Shields, the hero of two wars, the senator from three
States.  It was an Irish-American poet of a neighboring State
who wrote of our fallen soldiers words that will live while we have
a country and a language:

  "The muffled drum's sad roll has beat
  The soldier's last tattoo;
  No more of life's parade shall meet
  That brave and fallen few."

The achievements of representatives of this race along every pathway
of useful and honorable endeavor are a part of our own history.
We honor to-day the far-away island, the deeds and sacrifices of
whose sons have added so brilliant a chapter to American history.
From the assembling of the First Continental Congress to the present
hour, in every legislative hall the Irishman has been a factor.
His bones have whitened every American battlefield from the first
conflict with British regulars to the closing hour of our struggle
with Spain.

The love of liberty is deeply ingrained into the very life of
the Irishman.  The history of his country is that of a gallant
people struggling for a larger measure of freedom.  His most precious
heritage is the record of his countrymen, who upon the battlefield
and upon the scaffold have sealed their devotion to liberty with
their blood.  With such men it was a living faith that--

  "Whether on the scaffold high
  Or in the battle's van
  The fittest place for man to die
  Is where he dies for man."

With a history reaching into the far past, every page of which
tells of the struggle for liberty, it is not strange that the
sympathies of the Irishman are with the oppressed everywhere on
God's footstool.  Irishmen, in common with liberty-loving men
everywhere, looked with abhorrence upon the attempt of a great
European power to establish monarchy upon the ruins of republics.

May we not confidently abide in the hope that brighter days are in
waiting for the beautiful island and her gallant people?  I close with
the words:  "God bless old Ireland!"



No Senator who ever sat under the ministrations of Dr. Milburn,
the blind chaplain, can ever forget his earnest and solemn invocation.
When rolling from his tongue, each word of the Lord's Prayer seemed
to weigh a pound.  His venerable appearance and sightless eyes gave
a tinge of pathetic emphasis to his every utterance.  He was a man
of rare gifts; in early life, before the entire failure of his
sight, he had known much of active service in his sacred calling
upon the Western circuits.  He had been the fellow-laborer of
Cartwright, Bascom, and other eminent Methodist ministers of the
early times.

Dr. Milburn was the Chaplain of the House during the Mexican War, and
often a guest at the Executive Mansion when Mr. Polk was President.
He knew well many of the leading statesmen of that period.  He
possessed rare conversational powers; and notwithstanding his
blindness, poverty, and utter loneliness, he remained the pleasing,
entertaining gentleman to the last.

It was the custom of the good Chaplain, with the aid of a faithful
monitor, to keep thoroughly advised as to the health of the senators
and their families.  The bare mention, in the morning paper, of
any ill having befallen any statesman of whom he was, for the time,
the official spiritual shepherd, was the unfailing precursor of
special and affectionate mention at the next convening of the
Senate.  Moreover, in the discharge of this sacred duty, his
invariable habit was to designate the object of his special invocation
as "the Senior Senator" or "Junior Senator," carefully giving
the name of his State.  It is within the realm of probability that
since the first humble petition was breathed, there has never been
an apparently more prompt answer to prayer than that now to be

_The Morning Post_ contained an item to the effect that Senator
Voorhees was ill.  During the accustomed invocation which preceded
the opening of the session, an earnest petition ascended for
"the Senior Senator from Indiana," that he might "soon be restored
to his wonted health, and permitted to return to the seat so long and
so honorably occupied."

A moment later, the touching invocation being ended, and the Senate
duly in session, the stately form of "the Senior Senator from
Indiana" promptly emerged from the cloak-room, and quietly resumed
the seat he had "so long and so honorably occupied."



On the eighteenth day of September, 1893, the first centennial
of the laying of the corner-stone of the national Capitol was
celebrated by appropriate ceremonies in Washington City.

President Cleveland presided, and seated upon the platform were
the members of his Cabinet, the Senate, the House of Representatives,
the Supreme Court of the United States, and the Foreign Ambassadors.

The oration was delivered by the Hon. William Wirt Henry, of
Richmond, Virginia, grandson of Patrick Henry.  The addresses which
followed were by myself, representing the Senate; Speaker Crisp,
representing the House; and Justice Brown, the Supreme Court.  I
spoke as follows:

"This day and this hour mark the close of a century of our national
history.  No ordinary event has called us together.  Standing in
the presence of this august assemblage of the people, upon the spot
where Washington stood, we solemnly commemorate the one-hundredth
anniversary of the laying of the corner-stone of the nation's Capitol.

"It is well that this day has been set apart as a national holiday,
that all public business has been suspended, and that the President
and his Cabinet, the members of the great Court, and of the Congress,
unite with their countrymen in doing honor to the memory of the
men who, one hundred years ago, at this hour, and upon this spot, put
in place the corner-stone of the Capitol of the American Republic.
The century rolls back, and we stand in the presence of the grandest
and most imposing figure known to any age or country.  Washington,
as Grand Master of Free and Accepted Masons, clothed in the symbolic
garments of that venerable Order, wearing the apron and the sash
wrought by the hands of the wife of the beloved Lafayette, impressively
and in accordance with the time-honored usages of that Order, is
laying his hands upon the corner-stone of the future and permanent
Capitol of his country.  The solemn ceremonies of the hour were
conducted by Washington, not only in his office of Grand Master of
Free Masons, but in his yet more august office of President of the
United States.  Assisting him in the fitting observance of these
impressive rites, were representatives of the Masonic Lodges of
Virginia and Maryland, while around him stood men whose honored
names live with his in history--the men who, on field and in council,
had aided first in achieving independence, and then in the yet more
difficult task of garnering, by wise legislation, the fruits of
victory.  Truly, the centennial of an event so fraught with interest
should not pass unnoticed.

"History furnishes no parallel to the century whose close we now
commemorate.  Among all the centuries it stands alone.  With hearts
filled with gratitude to the God of our fathers, it is well that
we recall something of the progress of the young Republic, since
the masterful hour when Washington laid his hands upon the
foundation-stone of yonder Capitol.

"The seven years of colonial struggle for liberty had terminated
in glorious victory.  Independence had been achieved.  The Articles
of Confederation, binding the Colonies together in a mere league
of friendship, had given place to the Constitution of the United
States--that wonderful instrument, so aptly declared by Mr. Gladstone
to be 'the most wonderful work ever struck off at a given time by
the brain and purpose of man.'

"Without a dissenting voice in the Electoral Colleges, Washington had
been chosen President.  At his council-table sat Jefferson, the
author of the Declaration of Independence; Hamilton, of whom it
has been said, 'He smote the rock of the national resources, and
abundant streams of revenue gushed forth.  He touched the dead
corpse of the public credit, and it sprung upon its feet'; Knox, the
brave and trusted friend of his chief during the colonial struggle;
and Edmund Randolph, the impress of whose genius has been indelibly
left upon the Federal Constitution.  Vermont and Kentucky, as
sovereign States--coequal with the original thirteen--had been
admitted into the Union.  The Supreme Court, consisting of six
members, had been constituted, with the learned jurist John Jay
as its Chief Justice.  The popular branch of the Congress consisted
of but one hundred and five members.  Thirty members constituted
the Senate, over whose deliberations presided the patriot statesman,
John Adams.  The population of the entire country was less than
four millions.  The village of Washington, the capital--and I trust
for all coming ages the capital--contained but a few hundred

"After peace had been concluded with Great Britain, and while we
were yet under the Articles of Confederation, the sessions of
the Congress were held successively at Princeton, Annapolis, Trenton,
and New York.  In the presence of both houses of Congress, on
the thirtieth day of April, 1789, in the city of New York, Washington
had been inaugurated President.  From that hour--the beginning
of our Government under the Constitution--the Congress was held in
New York, until 1790, then in Philadelphia until 1800, when, on
November 17, it first convened in Washington.  The necessity of
selecting a suitable and central place for the permanent location of
the seat of Government early engaged the thoughtful consideration of
our fathers.  It cannot be supposed that the question reached a
final determination without great embarrassment, earnest discussion,
and the manifestation of sectional jealousies.  But, as has been
well said, the good genius of our system finally prevailed, 'and
a district of territory on the River Potomac, at some place between
the mouths of the Eastern branch and the Conococheague,' was, by
Act of Congress of June 28, 1790, 'accepted for the permanent seat
of the Government of the United States.'  From the seventeenth day
of November, 1800, this city has been the capital.  When that
day came, Washington had gone to his grave, John Adams was President,
and Jefferson the presiding officer of the Senate.  It may be well
to recall that upon the occasion of the assembling for the first
time of the Congress in the Capitol, President Adams appeared before
the Senate and the House, in joint session, and said:

"'It would be unbecoming the representatives of this nation to
assemble for the first time in this solemn temple, without looking
up to the Supreme Ruler of the Universe and imploring His blessing.
You will consider it as the capital of a great nation, advancing
with unexampled rapidity in arts, in commerce, in wealth, and
population, and possessing within itself those resources which, if
not thrown away or lamentably misdirected, will secure it a long
course of prosperity and self-government.'

"To this address of President Adams the Senate made reply:

"'We meet you, sir, and the other branch of the national Legislature,
in the city which is honored by the name of our late hero and sage,
the illustrious Washington, with sensations and emotions which
exceed our power of description.'

"From the date last given until the burning of the Capitol by
the British, in 1814, in the room now occupied by the Supreme Court
Library, in the north wing, were held the sessions of the Senate.
That now almost forgotten apartment witnessed the assembling of
Senators who, at an earlier period of our history, had been the
associates of Washington and Franklin, and had themselves played
no mean part in crystallizing into the great organic law, the
deathless principles of the Declaration of Independence.  From this
chamber went forth the second Declaration of War against Great
Britain; and here, before the Senate as a court of impeachment,
was arraigned a Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States,
to answer the charge of alleged high crimes and misdemeanors.

"With the rolling years and the rapid growth of the Republic, came
the imperative necessity for enlarging its Capitol.  The debates
upon this subject culminated in the Act of Congress of September
30, 1850, providing for the erection of the north and south wings of
the Capitol.  Thomas U. Walter was the architect to whose hand was
committed the great work.  Yonder noble structure will stand for
ages the silent witness of the fidelity with which the important
trust was discharged.

"The corner-stone of the additions was laid by President Fillmore,
on the fourth day of July, 1851.  In honor of that event, and by
request of the President, Mr. Webster pronounced an oration, and
while we have a country and a language his words will touch a
responsive chord in patriotic hearts.  Beneath the corner-stone
was then deposited a paper, in the handwriting of Mr. Webster,
containing the following words:

"'If it shall be, hereafter, the will of God, that this structure
shall fall from its base, that its foundation be upturned and this
deposit brought to the eyes of men, be it then known that on this day
the Union of the United States of America stands firm, that
their Constitution still exists unimpaired, with all its
original usefulness and glory, growing every day stronger and
stronger in the affections of the great body of the American people,
and attracting more and more the attention of the world.  And all
here assembled, whether belonging to public life or to private
life, with hearts devoutly thankful to Almighty God for the
preservation of the liberty and happiness of the country, unite in
sincere and fervent prayers that this deposit, and the walls and
arches, the domes and towers, the columns and entablatures now
to be erected over it, may endure forever.'

"From the sixth day of December, 1819, until January 4, 1859, a
period of thirty-nine years, the sessions of the Senate were held
in the present Supreme Court room.  This was, indeed, the arena of
high debate.  When, in any age, or in any country, has there
been gathered, within so small compass, so much of human greatness?
Even to suggest the great questions here discussed and determined,
would be to write a history of that eventful period.  It was,
indeed, the coming together of the master spirits of the second
generation of American statesmen.  Here were Macon and Crawford,
Benton, Randolph, Cass, Bell, Houston, Preston, Buchanan, Seward, Chase,
Crittenden, Sumner, Choate, Everett, Breese, Trumbull, Fessenden, Douglas,
Clay, Calhoun, Webster, and others scarcely less illustrious.
Within the walls of that little chamber was heard the wondrous
debate between Hayne and Webster.  There began the fierce conflict
of antagonistic ideas touching the respective powers of the State and
of the Nation--a conflict which, transferred to a different theatre,
found final solution only in the bloody arbitrament of arms.

"For more than a third of a century the sessions of the Senate have
been held in the magnificent chamber of the north wing of the
Capitol.  Of the procession of sixty-two Senators that, preceded
by the Vice-President, Mr. Breckenridge, entered the Chamber for
the first time, on the fourth day of January, 1859, but four survive;
not one remains in public life.  It is, indeed, now a procession of

"When the foundation-stone of this Capitol was laid, our Republic was
in its infancy, and self-government yet an untried experiment.  It
is a proud reflection to-day that time has proved the true arbiter,
and that the capacity of a free and intelligent people to govern
themselves by written constitution and laws, of their own making, is
no longer an experiment.  The crucial test of a century of
unparalleled material prosperity has been safely endured.

"In 1793 there was no city west of the Alleghanies.  To-day a single
city on Lake Michigan contains a population of a little less
than one-half of the Republic at the time of the first inauguration
of Washington.  States have been carved out of the wilderness, and
our great rivers, whose silence met no break on their pathway to
the sea, are now the arteries of our interior trade, and bear upon
their bosoms a commerce which surpasses a hundred-fold that of the
entire country a century ago.

"From fifteen States and four millions of people, we have grown to
fifty States and Territories, and sixty-seven millions of people; from
an area of eight hundred and five thousand, to an area of three
million, six hundred thousand square miles; from a narrow strip
along the Atlantic seaboard, to an unbroken possession from ocean to
ocean.  How marvellous the increase in our national wealth!  In
1793, our imports amounted to thirty-one million, and our exports to
twenty-six million dollars.  Now our imports are eight hundred and
forty-seven million, and our exports one billion and thirty million
dollars.  Thirty-three million tons of freight are carried on
our Great Lakes, whose only burden then was the Indian's canoe.
Then our national wealth was inconsiderable; now our assessed
valuation amounts to the enormous sum of twenty-four billion,
six hundred and fifty million dollars.  Then trade and travel were
dependent upon beasts of burden and on sailing vessels; now steam and
electricity do our bidding, railroads cover the land, boats burden
the waters, the telegraph reaches every city and hamlet; distance
is annihilated, and

  "'Civilization, on her luminous wings,
  Soars, Phoenix-like, to Jove.'

"In the presence of this wondrous fulfillment of predicted greatness,
prophecy looks out upon the future and stands dumb.

"When this corner-stone was laid, France, then in the throes of
a revolution, had just declared war against Great Britain--a war
in which all Europe eventually became involved.  Within a century of
that hour, in the capital of France, there convened an international
court, its presiding officer an eminent citizen of the French
Republic, its members representatives of sovereign European States,
its object the peaceable adjustment of controversies between Great
Britain and the United States.

"Was it Richelieu who said, 'Take away the sword; States can be
saved without it'?

"In no part of our mechanism of government was the wisdom of our
fathers more strikingly displayed than in the division of power
into the three great departments--legislative, executive, and
judicial.  In an equal degree was that wisdom manifested by the
division of Congress into a Senate and a House of Representatives.
Upon the Senate the Constitution has devolved important functions other
than those of a merely legislative character.  Coequal with the
House in matters of legislation, it is, in addition, the advisory
body of the President in appointments to office, and in treating
with foreign nations.  The mode of election, together with the long
term of service, unquestionably fosters a spirit of conservatism
in the Senate.  Always organized, it is the continuing body of our
national legislature.  Its members change, but the Senate continues
--the same now as at the first hour of the Republic.  Before no
human tribunal come for determination issues of weightier moment.
It were idle to doubt that problems yet lie in our pathway as a
nation, as difficult of solution as any that in times past have
tried the courage or tested the wisdom of our fathers.  Yet, may
we not confidently abide in the faith that in the keeping of those
who succeed the illustrious sages I have named, the dearest interest
of our country will be faithfully conserved, and in the words of
an eminent predecessor, 'though these marble walls moulder into
ruin, the Senate, in another age, may bear into a new and large
chamber the Constitution, vigorous and inviolate, and that the last
generation of posterity shall witness the deliberations of the
representatives of American States, still united, prosperous,
and free'?

"And may our fathers' God, 'from out of whose hand the centuries
fall like grains of sand,' continue to the American people, throughout
all the ages, the prosperity and blessings which He has given to
us in the past."



Facing the statue of Shakespeare in Central Park, New York, is that
of Christopher Columbus.  It was unveiled with appropriate ceremonies.
General James Grant Wilson presided; Mrs. Julia Ward Howe read her
beautiful poem, "The Mariner's Dream," and the oration was delivered
by the Hon. Chauncey Depew.  Upon this occasion I spoke as follows:

"This hour will live in history.  Central Park, beautiful and
magnificent, is the fitting place for the statue of Columbus.
It is well that to the City of New York, the metropolis of the
continent, should have fallen the grateful task of portraying to
the millions of all the coming ages the features of the man who,
despite obstacles and dangers, marked out the pathway to the New

"The name and fame of Columbus belong exclusively to no age or
country.  They are the enduring heritage of all people.  Your
President has truly said:  'In all the transactions of history,
there is no act which, for vastness and performance, can be compared
to the discovery of the continent of America.'  In the modest words
of the great navigator, he 'only opened the gates'; and lo! there came
in the builders of a new and mighty nation.

"It is said that in Venice there is sacredly preserved a letter
written by Columbus a few hours before he sailed from Palos.  With
reverent expression of trust in God, humbly, but with unfaltering faith,
he spoke of his proposed voyage to that famous land.  He builded
better than he knew.  His dream, while a suppliant in the outer
chambers of kings, and while keeping lonely vigil on the deep, was
the discovery of a new pathway to the Indies.  Yet who can doubt
that to his prophetic soul was then foreshadowed something of that
famous land with the warp and woof of whose history, tradition,
and song, his name and fame are linked for all time?  Was it Mr.
Winthrop who said of Columbus and his compeers:  'They were the
pioneers in the march to independence; the precursors in the
only progress of freedom which was to have no backward steps.'

"Is it too much to say of this man that among the world's benefactors
a greater than he hath not appeared?  What page in our history
tells of deeds so fraught with blessings to the generations of men
as the discovery of America?  Columbus added a continent to the
map of the world.

"I will detain you no longer.  Your eyes will now behold this
splendid work of art.  It is well that its approaches are firm and
broad, for along this pathway, with the rolling centuries, will
come, as pilgrims to a shrine, the myriads of all lands to behold this
statue of Columbus, this enduring monument of the gratitude of a
great city, of a great nation."

As the last words were spoken, I leaned over and grasped the
rope fastened to the flag that enveloped the statue.  The flag
parted on either side and was removed by the attendants.  The statue
stood revealed in all its beauty under the shade of the great elms
of the Mall.

Mr. Depew concluded his eloquent oration with the following words:

"We are here to erect this statue to his memory because of the
unnumbered blessings to America and to the people of every race
and clime which have followed his discovery.  His genius and faith
gave succeeding generations the opportunity for life and liberty.
We, the heirs of all the ages, in the plenitude of our enjoyments,
and the prodigality of the favors showered upon us, hail Columbus our



The builders of political platforms, which uniformly "point with
pride" and "view with alarm," may possibly glean a valuable suggestion
from the following incident related by Governor Knott.  In the
county in the good State of Missouri in which his fortune was cast
for a while, there lived and flourished, in the ante-bellum days,
one Solomon P. Rodes, whose earnest and long-continued yearning
was to be a member of the State Legislature.  So intense, indeed, had
this feeling become in the mind of Solomon, that he at length openly
declared that he "would rather go to the Missouri Legislater, than
to be the Czar of Roosky."  And in passing, it may here be
safely admitted that even a wiser man than Solomon might make this
declaration in these early years of the twentieth century.

Following the example of greater men than himself when aspiring to
public office, Mr. Rodes called a meeting of his party friends
in his precinct, to the end that his modest "boom" might be
successfully launched.  After the accustomed organization had been
effected, a committee of five, of which our aspirant was chairman,
was duly appointed to prepare and present appropriate resolutions.
The committee at once retired for consultation, to a log in the
rear of the schoolhouse, leaving the convention in session.  No
rattling orator being present to arouse the enthusiasm so essential
to patient waiting, the little assemblage, wearied by the delay,
at length despatched a messenger to expedite, if possible, the
labors of the committee.  The messenger found the committee in a
condition far otherwise than encouraging.  The resolutions had
failed to materialize, and the chairman, seated upon the log, with
pencil in hand, and gazing pensively upon a blank leaf before him,
seemed the very picture of despair.  Upon a second admonition from
the unreasonably impatient meeting, that adjournment would
immediately take place unless the resolutions were reported, the
committee hastily concluded its labors and, preceded by the chairman
with document in hand, solemnly returned to the place of assembly.

The resolutions, two in number, and unanimously and with great
enthusiasm promptly adopted, were in words and figures as follows,

"(1) Resolv that in the declaration of independence and likewise
also in the constitution of the united states, we recognize _a able
and well ritten document,_ and that we are tetotually oppose to
the repeal of airy one of the aforesaid instruments of riting.

"(2) that in our fellow-townsman, Solomon P. Rodes, we view a onest
man and _hereby annominate him for the legislater."_



Few men have enjoyed a greater degree of popularity than did the
late Governor Oglesby of Illinois.  He was whole-souled, genial,
and at all times the most delightful of companions.  He stood in
the front rank of campaign orators when slavery, rebellion, war, and
reconstruction were the stirring questions of the hour.  In the
discussion of these once vital issues, with the entire State for
an audience, he was without a peer.  But when they were relegated to
the domain of history and succeeded by tariff, finance, and
other commonplace, everyday questions, the Governor felt greatly
hampered.  In a large degree Othello's occupation was gone.
Cold facts, statistics, figures running up into the millions, gave
little opportunity for the play of his wonderful imagination.

In his second race for Governor, in a speech at Bloomington, he
said, in a deprecatory tone:  "These Democrats undertake to discuss
the financial question.  They oughtn't to do that.  They can't
possibly understand it.  The Lord's truth is, fellow-citizens, _it
is about all we Republicans can do to understand that question!"_

He was a gallant soldier in the Mexican and in the great Civil War,
and in the latter achieved distinction as a commanding officer.
With Weldon, Ewing, McNulta, Fifer, Rowell, and others as listeners,
he once graphically described the first battle in which he was
engaged.  Turning to his old-time comrade, McNulta, he said:  "There
is one supreme moment in the experience of a soldier that is
absolutely ecstatic!"  "That," quickly replied McNulta, "is the very
moment when he gets into battle."

"No, damn it," said Oglesby, _"it is the very moment he gets out!"_

In his early manhood, Oglesby spent some years abroad.  His pilgrimage
extended even to Egypt, up the Nile, and to the Holy Land.

Few persons at the time having visited the Orient, Oglesby's
descriptions of the wonders of the far-off countries were listened
to with the deepest interest.  With both memory and imagination in
their prime, it can easily be believed that those wonders of the
Orient lost nothing by his description.  Soon after his return
he lectured in Bloomington.  The audience were delighted, especially
with his description of the Pyramids.

None of us had ever before seen or heard a man who had actually,
with his own eyes, beheld these wonders of the ages.  Near the
close of his lecture, and just after he had suggested the probability
of Abraham and Sarah having taken in the Pyramids on their wedding
trip, some one in the audience inquired;

"Who built the Pyramids?"

"Oh, damn it," quickly replied the  orator, "I don't know who built
them; _I asked everybody I saw in Egypt and none of them knew!"_

For much that is of interest in the career of Governor Oglesby I
am indebted to his honored successor in office, my neighbor and
friend, Hon. Joseph W. Fifer--than whom the country has had no
braver soldier and the State no abler Chief Executive.



_"He who has a thousand friends has not a friend to spare,
And he who has one enemy will meet him everywhere."_

The truth of the above couplet has rarely had more forcible
illustration than in the case of the late Caleb Cushing of
Massachusetts.  In politics he was successively Whig, Democrat,
and Republican.  During his first political affiliation, he was
a Representative in Congress; in the second a member of Pierce's
Cabinet; and in the third a Minister abroad.  He was an eminent
lawyer, and for a term ably discharged the duties of Attorney-General
of the United States.  His one ambition was a seat upon the Supreme

This was at length gratified by his appointment as Chief Justice
of the Great Court.  Unfortunately he had, years before, given
mortal offence to Aaron A. Sargent, then recently admitted to
the bar.  The latter soon after moved to California, and became in
time a Senator from that State.

When the appointment of Cushing came before the Senate for
confirmation, his _one enemy_ was there.  The appointee had long
since forgotten the young lawyer he had once treated so rudely,
but he had not been forgotten.  The hour of revenge had now come.
After a protracted and bitter struggle, Sargent, of the same
political affiliation as Cushing, succeeded in defeating the
confirmation by a single vote.  The political sensation of the hour
was the Senator's prompt message to his defeated enemy:

  "Time at last sets all things even;
  And if we do but watch the hour,
  There never yet was human power
  Which could evade, if unforgiven,
  The patient search and vigil long,
  Of him who treasures up a wrong."



While I was Assistant Postmaster-General, Senator Whittihorne,
of Tennessee, called at the Department to see me on official
business.  Seated at a window overlooking the Capitol, he remarked
that the chords of memory were touched as he entered the room; that
when barely of age, he occupied for a time a desk as a clerk just
where he was seated.

He then told me that at the time of the Presidential election in
1844 he was a law student in the office of Mr. Polk, and by his
invitation came on with him to Washington.  The journey of the
President-elect, from Nashville to Washington, was in February,
1845, just prior to his inauguration.  He was accompanied by the
members of his immediate family, his law student Mr. Whittihorne, and
the Hon. Cave Johnson, who was soon to hold a position in his
Cabinet.  The journey to Washington, as Senator Whittihorne told
me, was of two weeks' duration:  first, by steamboat on the Cumberland
and the Ohio to Pittsburg; thence by stage coach to the national

At the time mentioned, railroads scarcely had an existence south
of the Ohio and west of the Alleghanies; and save the single
wire from Washington to Baltimore, no telegraph line had been

How striking the commentary, alike upon human accomplishment,
and upon opportunity under our free institutions, is here presented!
The wearisome and hazardous journey of half a month by steamboat
and stage coach had been succeeded by one in palace car of a day
and a night of comparative ease and safety, and the clerk had risen
from a humble place in the Department to that of Senator from one of
the great States in the Union.



The Democratic members of the forty-ninth Congress who yet survive
will probably recall something of the difficulty they experienced in
procuring for aspiring constituents prompt appointments to positions
of honor, trust, and profit, under the then lately inaugurated
administration.  An earnest desire was felt, and vehemently expressed
at times, by those who had been long excluded from everything that
savored of Federal recognition, for sweeping changes all along the

A new member of the House, from one of the border States, believing
that his grievances were far too heavy to be meekly borne, made
open declaration of war, and asserted with great confidence and
with the free use of words nowhere to be found in "Little Helps to
Youthful Beginners," that at the approaching Democratic convention
of his State, resolutions of condemnation of no uncertain sound
would be adopted.  Some conciliatory observations, which I ventured
to offer, were treated with scorn, and the irate member, still
breathing out threatenings, hastily turned his footsteps homeward.

A few mornings later, I was agreeably surprised to find in _The
Post_ a telegram to the effect that upon the assembling of the
convention aforementioned, the honorable gentleman above designated,
securing prompt recognition from the chair, had, under a suspension
of the rules, secured the unanimous adoption of a resolution
enthusiastically and unconditionally endorsing every act, past,
present, and to come, of the national Democratic administration.

Upon the return of the member to Washington, I expressed to him my
surprise at a conversion which, in suddenness and power, had possibly
but one parallel in either sacred or profane history.  Closing his
near eye, he said:

"Look here!  I can illustrate my position about this matter by
relating a little incident I witnessed near the close of the war.
Just as I was leaving an old ferry-boat in which I had crossed the
Tennessee River, my attention was attracted to a canoe near by
in which were seated two fishermen, both negroes, one a very old
man and the other a small boy.  Suddenly the canoe capsized and
they were both dumped in the deep water.  The boy was an expert
swimmer and was in no danger.  Not so with the old man; he sank
immediately, and it certainly seemed that his fishing days were
over.  The boy, however, with a pluck and skill that did him great
credit, instantly dived to the bottom of the river, and with great
difficulty and much personal peril finally succeeded in landing
the old man upon the shore.

"Approaching the heroic youth, as he was wringing the water from
his own garments, I inquired,

"'Your father, is he?'

"'No, sir,' was the quick reply, 'he ain't my father.'

"'Your grandfather, then?'

"'No, sir, he ain't my grandfather nuther, he ain't no kin to me, I
tell you.'

"'Earnestly expressing my surprise at his having imperilled his
own life to save a man who was no kin to him, the boy replied,'

"'You see, dis was de way of it boss; _de ole man, he had de bait!"_



The Hon. John B. Henderson, now of Washington City, but during the
war and the early reconstruction period a distinguished Union
Senator from Missouri, relates the following incident of Mr. Lincoln.
During the gloomy period of 1862, late one Sunday afternoon he
called upon the President and found his alone in his library.
After some moments Mr. Lincoln, apparently much depressed, stated
in substance:  "They are making every effort, Henderson, to induce
me to issue a Proclamation of Emancipation.  Sumner and Wilson and
Stevens are constantly urging me, but I don't think it best now;
do _you_ think so, Henderson?"  To which the latter promptly replied
that he did not think so; that such a measure, under existing
conditions, would, in his judgment, be ill-advised and possibly
disastrous.  "Just what I think," said the President, "but they
are constantly coming and urging me, sometimes alone, sometimes in
couples, and sometimes _all three together,_ but constantly pressing
me."  With that he walked across the room to a window and looked
out upon the Avenue.  Sure enough, Wilson, Stevens, and Sumner were
seen approaching the Executive Mansion.  Calling his visitor to
the window and pointing to the approaching figures, in a tone
expressing something of that wondrous sense of humor that no burden
or disaster could wholly dispel, he said, "Henderson, did you ever
attend an old field school?"  Henderson replied that he did.

"So did I," said the President; "what little education I
ever got in early life was in that way.  I attended an old field
school in Indiana, where our only reading-book was the Bible.  One
day we were standing up reading the account of the three Hebrew
children in the fiery furnace.  A little tow-headed fellow who
stood beside me had the verse with the unpronounceable names; he
mangled up Shadrach and Meshach woefully, and finally went all
to pieces on Abednego.  Smarting under the blows which, in accordance
with the old-time custom, promptly followed his delinquency, the
little fellow sobbed aloud.  The reading, however, went round, each
boy in the class reading his verse in turn.  The sobbing at length
ceased, and the tow-headed boy gazed intently upon the verses ahead.

"Suddenly he gave a pitiful yell, at which the school-master

"'What is the matter with you now?'

"'Look there,' said the boy, pointing to the next verse, 'there
comes them same damn three fellows again!'"

As indicating the slight concern Mr. Lincoln had about money-making,
as well as the significance of the expression "well-off" half a
century or so ago, the following conversation, related by Judge
Weldon, is in point.

At the opening of the De Witt Circuit Court in May, 1859, just a
year before his first nomination for the Presidency, Mr. Lincoln
was present, unattended for possibly the first time by his life-long
friend, Major John T. Stuart.  Upon inquiry from Weldon as to
whether Stuart was coming, Lincoln replied, "No, Stuart told me
that he would not be here this term."

Weldon then remarked, "I suppose the Major has gotten to be pretty
well off and doesn't have to attend all the courts in the Circuit."

"Yes," replied Lincoln, "Stuart is pretty well to do, pretty well to

"How much is the Major probably worth, Mr. Lincoln?"  asked Mr.

"Well," replied the latter, after a moment's thought, "I don't know
exactly; Stuart is pretty well off; _I suppose he must be worth
about fifteen thousand dollars."_

Another incident characteristic of Mr. Lincoln, was related by his
friend Judge Weldon.

During the gloomiest period of the war, and while our seaboard
cities were in constant apprehension of attack, a delegation of
business men from New York visited Washington for the purpose of
having a gunboat secured for the defence of their city.  At
their request, Judge Weldon accompanied them to the Executive
Mansion and introduced them to the President.  The spokesman of
the delegation, after depicting at length and in somewhat
pompous manner, the dangers that threatened the great metropolis, took
occasion, in manner at once conclusive, to state that he spoke with
authority, that the gentlemen represented property aggregating
in value many hundreds of millions of dollars.  At this, Mr. Lincoln
interposing impatiently, and in a manner never to be forgotten,

"It seems to me, gentlemen, that if I were as rich as you _say_
you are, and as badly _scared_ as you _appear_ to be, I would,
in this hour of my country's distress, _just buy that gunboat



On the thirtieth of July, 1907, at the Jamestown Exposition, was
celebrated the anniversary of the assembling of the House of
Burgesses of Virginia, the first legislative body to assemble upon
the Western continent.  The meeting was presided over by the present
Speaker of the Virginia House of Burgesses, and by invitation of the
President of the Exposition addresses were made by ex-speakers
Carlisle, Keifer, and myself.

My address was as follows:

"We have assembled upon historic ground.  We celebrate to-day a
masterful historic event.  Other anniversaries, sacredly observed,
have their deep meaning; no one, however, is fraught with profounder
significance than this.

"The management of the great Exposition did well to set apart this
thirtieth of July to commemorate the coming together at Jamestown of
the first legislative assembly in the New World.  The assembling
of the representatives of the people upon the eventful day two
hundred and eighty-six years ago--of which this is the anniversary
--marked an epoch which, in far-reaching consequences, scarcely
finds a parallel in history.  It was the initial step in the series
of stupendous events which found their culmination in the Bill
of Rights, the Declaration of Independence, and the formulation of
the Federal Constitution.

"From my home, a thousand miles to the westward, in the great valley
of the Mississippi, I come at your bidding to bear part in the
exercises of this day.  Not as a stranger, an alien to your blood,
but as your countryman, your fellow-citizen, I gladly lift my voice
in this great assemblage.  And when were the words, 'fellow-citizens,'
of deeper significance as suggestive of a more glorious past
then to-day, as we gather upon this hallowed spot to commemorate
one of the grandest events of which history has any record?

"The magical words, 'fellow-citizens,' never fail to touch a
responsive chord in the patriotic heart.  Was it the gifted Prentiss
who at a critical moment of our history exclaimed, 'For whether
upon the Sabine or the St. Johns; standing in the shadow of Bunker
Hill, or amid the ruins of Jamestown; near the great northern chain
of lakes, or within the sound of the Father of Waters, flowing
unvexed to the sea; in the crowded mart of the great metropolis,
or upon the western verge of the continent, where the restless tide
of emigration is stayed only by the ocean--everywhere upon this
broad domain, thank God, I can still say, "fellow-citizens"'?

"And truly, an Illinoisan is no stranger within the confines of
'the Old Dominion.' You have not forgotten, we cannot forget, that
the territory now embraced in five magnificent commonwealths
bordering upon the Ohio and the Mississippi, was at a crucial period
of our history the generous gift of Virginia to the general
Government,--a gift that in splendid statesmanship and in far-reaching
consequence has no counterpart; one which at the pivotal moment made
possible the ratification of the Articles of Confederation--the
sure forecast of 'the more perfect Union' yet to follow.  Illinois,
the greatest of the commonwealths to which I have alluded, can
never forget that it was a Virginian, George Rogers Clark, who, in
the darkest days of the Revolution, led the expedition--'worthy of
mention,' as was said by John Randolph, 'with that of Hannibal
in Italy,'--by which the ancient capital, Kaskaskia, was captured,
the British flag deposed, and Illinois taken possession of in
the name of the commonwealth whose Governor, Patrick Henry, had
authorized the masterful conquest.  Nor can it be forgotten that
the deed of cession by which Illinois became part and parcel of
the general Government, bears--as commissioners upon the part of
Virginia--the honored names of Arthur Lee, James Monroe, and Thomas
Jefferson.  Is it to be wondered at, that a magnificent Illinois
building adorns the grounds of the Jamestown Exposition,--and that
Illinois hearts everywhere beat in unison with yours in the
celebration of one of the epoch-marking days of all the ages?

"The time is propitious for setting history aright.  This exposition
will not have been in vain if the fact be crystallized into history
yet to be written, that the first settlement by English-speaking
people--just three centuries ago--upon this continent, was at
Jamestown.  And that here self-government--in its crude form but
none the less self-government--had its historical beginning.  Truly
has it been said by an eminent writer of your own State, that prior
to December, 1620, 'the colony of Virginia had become so firmly
established and self-government in precisely the same form which
existed up to the Revolution throughout the English colonies had
taken such firm root thereon, that it was beginning to affect
not only the people but the Government of Great Britain.'  In
the old church at Jamestown, on July 30, 1619, was held the
first legislative assembly of the New World--the historical House of
Burgesses.  It consisted of twenty-two members, and its constituencies
were the several plantations of the colony.  A speaker was elected,
the session opened with prayer, and the oath of supremacy duly
taken.  The Governor and Council occupied the front seats, and the
members of the body, in accordance with the custom of the
British Parliament, wore their hats during the session.

"This General Assembly convened in response to a summons issued by
Sir George Yeardley, the recently appointed Governor of the colony.
Hitherto the colony had been governed by the London Council; the
real life of Virginia dates from the arrival of Yeardley, bringing
with him from England 'commissions and instructions for the better
establishing of a commonwealth.'

"The centuries roll back, and before us, in solemn session, is the
first assembly upon this continent of the chosen representatives
of the people.  It were impossible to overstate its deep import to
the struggling colony, or its far-reaching consequence to States
yet unborn.  In this little assemblage of twenty-two burgesses,
the Legislatures of nearly fifty commonwealths to-day and of the
Congress with its representatives from all the States of 'an
indestructible union' find their historical beginning.  The words of
Bancroft in this connection are worthy of remembrance:  'A perpetual
interest attaches to this first elective body that ever assembled
in the Western world, representing the people of Virginia and making
laws for their government more than a year before the _Mayflower_ with
the Pilgrims left the harbor of Southampton, and while Virginia
was still the only British colony on the continent of America.'

"It is to us to-day a matter of profound gratitude that these
the earliest American lawgivers were eminently worthy their high
vocation.  While confounding, in some degree, the separate functions
of government, as abstractly defined at a later day by Montesquieu,
and eventually put in concrete form in our fundamental laws, State
and Federal--it is none the less true that these first legislators
clearly discerned their inherent rights as a part of the English-speaking
race.  More important still, a perusal of the brief records they
have left, impresses the conviction that they were no strangers to
the underlying fact that the people are the true source of political
power, the evidence whereof is to be found in the scant records of
their proceedings--a priceless heritage of all future generations.
And first--and fundamental in all legislative assemblies--they
asserted the absolute right to determine as to the election and
qualification of members.  Grants of land were asked, not only for
the planters, but for their wives, 'as equally important parts
of the colony.'  It was wisely provided that of the natives 'the
most towardly boys in wit and the graces' should be educated and set
apart to the work of converting the Indians to the Christian
religion; stringent penalties were attached to idleness, gambling,
and drunkenness; excess in apparel was prohibited by heavy taxation;
encouragement was given to agriculture in all its known forms;
while conceding 'the commission of privileges' brought over by the
new Governor as their fundamental law, yet with the liberty-guarding
instinct of their race they kept the way open for seeking redress,
'in case they should find aught not perfectly squaring with the
state of the colony.'  No less important were the enactments
regulating the dealings of the colonists with the Indians.  Yet to
be mentioned, and of transcendent importance, was the claim of the
burgesses 'to allow or disallow,' at their own good pleasure,
all orders of the court of the London Company.  And deeply significant
was the declaration of these representatives of three centuries
ago, that their enactments were instantly to be put in force,
without waiting for their ratification in England.  And not to
be forgotten is the stupendous fact that while the battle with the
untamed forces of nature was yet waging, and conflict with savage foe
of constant recurrence, these legislators provided for the maintenance
of public worship, and took the initial steps for the establishment
of an institution of learning.  It is not too much to say that the
hour that witnessed these enactments witnessed the triumph of
the popular over the court party; in no unimportant sense, the
first triumph of the American colonists over kingly prerogative.
Looking through the mists of the mighty past, Mr. Speaker, to
the House of Burgesses, over which your first predecessor presided,
would it be out of place to apply to that assemblage the
historic words spoken of one of a later period:  'Nobles by the
right of an earlier creation, and priests by the imposition of a
mightier hand'?

"Did the occasion permit, it would be of wondrous interest to linger
for a time with these, the earliest colonies in this, the cradle
of American civilization; to know something of their daily life,
their hopes and ambitions, their struggles and triumphs; something
of their ceaseless vigil and of the perils that environed them; to
recall stirring incidents and heroic achievements; to catch a gleam
of a spirit of self-sacrifice and devotion which in all the annals
of men scarcely finds a parallel.  It would be of curious interest
to watch the parade and pomp of governors and councils of royal
appointment in attempted representation of a pageantry familiar to
the Old World, but which was to have no permanent abiding place in
the New.  Governors and their subordinates--though bearing the
royal commission, yet in rare instances to be classed only as bad or
indifferent--pass in long procession before us into the dim shadows.
But out of the mists of this long past, two figures emerge that
have for us an abiding interest, John Smith and Pocahontas--names
that have place not alone in romance and song, but upon the pages of
veritable history.

"Colonial governors strutted their brief hour upon the stage and
have long passed to oblivion; but Smith, the intrepid soldier, the
ever-present friend and counsellor of the early colonists, their
stalwart protector--alike against the bullet of the savage and the
mandate of official power--will not pass from remembrance so long as
heroic deeds are counted worthy of enduring record among men.

"With dark background of rude cabin and wigwam, of scantily appointed
plantation, and of far-stretching forest--with its mysterious voices
and manifold perils--there passes before us the lovely form of the
beautiful Indian maiden, the daughter and pride of the renowned
native chieftain.  So long as courage and fidelity arouse sympathy
and admiration, so long will the thrilling legend of Pocahontas
touch responsive chords in human hearts.  Its glamour is upon
the early pages of colonial history; her witchery lingers upon
stream and forest, and the firm earth upon which we tread seems to
have been hallowed by her footsteps.

"A name that sheds lustre upon the earliest pages of our Colonial history
is that of Sir Edwin Sandys.  Under his courageous leadership, what
was known as the Virginia or Liberal party in the London Company
obtained a signal triumph over that of the court.  The result
was the formal grant to the colony guaranteeing free government by
written charter.  Its declared purpose was to secure 'the greatest
comfort and benefit to the people and the prevention of injustice,
grievances, and oppression.'  It provided for full legislative
authority in the Assembly, and was with some modifications the
model of the systems subsequently introduced into the other English

"By this charter, representative government and trial by jury became
recognized rights in the New World.  Upon this charter, as has been
truly said, 'Virginia erected the superstructure of her liberties.'

"The coming of this charter marked an epoch in the history of
the Jamestown colony, and set the pace for English-speaking
settlements yet in the future.

"It was in very truth the first step in the direction of the
establishment of the great Republic which was to be the enduring
beacon-light of self-governing people in all future ages.

"To a full appreciation of the supreme significance of the mighty event
we to-day celebrate and its results--now constituting so inspiring
a chapter of history--some account must be taken of conditions then
existing in the mother country.  While obtaining the guarantee of a
large measure of self-government for the New World, Sir Edwin Sandys
and his co-patriots were unable to secure that which even savored of
liberal administration in the Old.  James--the first of the Stuart
Dynasty--was upon the English throne.  In narrow, selfish state-craft
his is possibly in the long list of sovereigns without a rival.
The exercise and maintenance of royal prerogative was with him the
'be all and end all' of government, and, abetted by the sycophants
about him, he unwittingly laid the train of inexorable events that
were to culminate in the execution of one and the banishment of
another of his line.  His claim was that of absolute power, and
during a reign of twenty-two years--extending from the death of
Queen Elizabeth to the year 1625--he was the unrelenting foe of
whatever pertained to freedom in religion or in government.  His
apparent indifference to the execution of his mother--the ill-fated
Mary, Queen of Scots--and his condemnation of the illustrious
Sir Walter Raleigh to the scaffold, are alone sufficient to render
the memory of this monarch forever infamous.  It is a marvel,
indeed, that with James the First upon the throne, and popular
freedom in such a low state throughout his immediate realm, that
so large a measure of liberty should have been conceded to the
distant colony.  The achievement is the enduring evidence of
unsurpassed courage in the men in whose immediate keeping were the
early fortunes of the Virginia colony, and sheds unfading lustre
upon their memories.

"Nor can it be forgotten that from the masterful hour that witnessed
the assembling of the first House of Burgesses until the abdication
of James the Second, the welfare of the Virginia colony was in
large measure in the iron grasp of stern antagonists to all that
pertained to liberty of conscience and to popular rule.  Whatever there
was of progress during the seventy years--barring the brief period
of the Commonwealth--that immediately preceded the historic English
Revolution, and the crowning of William and Mary, was despite
the untiring hostility of the Stuart Dynasty.  During this period the
lives of Englishmen at home were as the dust in the balance.  It
witnessed the very heyday of the infamous Star Chamber.  It was of
Strafford, the bloody instrument (though wearing judicial ermine) of
Charles the First, that Macaulay said:  'If justice, in the whole
range of its wide armory, contained one weapon which could pierce him,
that weapon his pursuers were bound, before God and man, to employ.'

"And for all time, the Stuart Dynasty itself remains impaled by
the pen of the same master:

"'Then came those days never to be recalled without a blush--the
days of servitude without loyalty, and sensuality without love, of
dwarfish talents and gigantic vices, the paradise of cold hearts
and narrow minds, the golden age of the coward, the bigot, and the
slave.  The principles of liberty were the scoff of every grinning
courtier, and the _anathema maranatha_ of every fawning dean.
In every high place worship was paid to Charles and James--Belial and
Moloch,--and England propitiated those obscene and cruel idols with
the blood of her best and bravest children.  Crime succeeded to
crime and disgrace to disgrace, until the race, accursed of God
and man, was a second time driven forth to wander on the face of
the earth, and to be a byword and a shaking of the head to the

"It is our pleasing task to turn now from the dark annals of our
English forebears to the stupendous events of which that we to-day
celebrate in the historical forecast.  With the passing years, a
continuing tide of emigration was setting in from the Old to the
New World.  Additional settlements had sprung into being, and
the Plantation in its distinctive sense had given way to the Colony,
to be succeeded yet later by the State.  The glory of Jamestown
had measurably departed, and to Williamsburg, and yet later to the
now splendid city upon the James, had been transferred the seat of
Virginia authority.  New England, despite natural obstacles and
constant peril, was surely working out her large place in history.
Puritan, Quaker, Dutchman, Cavalier, Scotch-Irish, and Huguenot
--'building better than they knew'--had established permanent
habitations from Plymouth Rock to Savannah.  Brave men from the
early fringe of settlements upon the Atlantic--regardless of
obstacle and danger--had pushed their way westward, and laid the
sure foundations of future commonwealths.  From New Hampshire to
Georgia, thirteen English-speaking colonies, with a population
aggregating near two millions, had attained to a large measure
of the dignity of distinctive States.  Their allegiance, meanwhile,
to the mother country had been unfaltering, and in her fierce
struggle with France for the mastery of the continent, America had
sealed her loyalty with the best blood of her sons.

"The successors to the first House of Burgesses had learned well
the lessons gleaned from the scant pages of their earliest history.
Attempts to tax the unrepresented colonies soon encountered concerted
hostility.  'No taxation without representation' became the universal
slogan.  The words spoken in the British Parliament by Barre--worthy
comrade of the gallant Wolfe on the Heights of Abraham--near a
century and a half after the event we now celebrate, will quicken the
pulse of all coming generations of American patriots.  Said he:

"'Your oppressions planted them in America.  They fled from your
tyranny to a then uncultivated, unhospitable country where they
exposed themselves to almost all the hardships to which human nature
is liable, among others to the cruelties of a savage foe; they grew
by your neglect of them.  As soon as you began to care for them,
that care was exercised in sending persons to rule them, to spy
out their liberties, to misrepresent their actions and to prey upon
them; men whose behavior on many occasions has caused the blood of
those sons of liberty to recoil within them; men promoted to the
highest seats of justice, some who, to my knowledge, were glad, by
going to a foreign country, to escape being brought to the bar of a
court of justice in their own.  The colonists have nobly taken
up arms in your defence; have asserted a valor amid their constant
and laborious industry for the defence of a country whose frontier
was drenched in blood.  And, believe me--remember, I warn you--the
same spirit of freedom which actuated that people at first will
accompany them still.'

"And how prophetic now seem the words of Burke in the same great

"'There is America, which at this day serves for little more than to
amuse you with stories of savage men and uncouth manners, yet shall,
before you taste of death, show itself equal to the whole of
that commerce which now attracts the envy of the world.'

"Standing at his hour almost within hailing distance of the spot
that witnessed the surrender of Cornwallis and the termination
of the War of the Revolution, it would be passing strange if we
should fail to catch something of the inspiration of the impassioned
words of Barre and of Burke, and their wondrous associations.

"It is said that in Venice there is sacredly preserved a letter
written by Columbus a few hours before he sailed from Palos.  With
reverent expression of trust in God--humbly but with unfaltering
faith--he spoke of his past voyage to 'that famous land.'  His
dream while a suppliant in the outer chambers of kings, and
while keeping lonely vigil upon the deep, was the discovery of a
new pathway to the Indies.  Yet who can doubt that to his prophetic
soul was even then fore-shadowed something of 'that famous land'
with the warp and woof of whose history, tradition, and song his
name and fame are linked for all time.  Can it not truly be said
of the members of the first House of Burgesses, as was said of
Columbus and his compeers, 'They were pioneers in the march to
independence--precursors in the only progress of freedom which was
to have no backward steps?'  They only 'opened the gates' and
lo! there came in the builders of a new and mighty nation.

"Had it been given to the Virginia--the American--legislators whose
memories we honor this day, 'to look into the seeds of time,' what
mighty events, with the rolling years and centuries, would have
passed before their visions.  They would have seen the colony they
had planted in the wilderness, day by day strengthening its cords,
enlarging its borders, and with firm tread advancing steadily to
recognized place among the nations.  They would have beheld the
savage foe--giving way before the inexorable advance of the hated
'pale face'--sadly retreating toward the ever-receding western
verge of civilization.  It would have been theirs to witness the
symbols of French and Spanish authority disappear forever from
mainland and island of the New World.  Following the sun a thousand
miles toward his setting, their eyes would have been gladdened
by the great river flowing unvexed from northern lake to southern sea
through a mighty realm that knew no allegiance other than to the
government that here had its feeble beginning.  They would--near a
century and a half later than the meeting of the first House of
Burgesses--have beheld their descendants listening in rapt attention
to the impassioned denunciation by Patrick Henry of the tyranny of
the royal successor of James the First; the thirteen colonies arming
for the seven years' struggle with the most powerful of nations;
the presentation, by a Virginian, in the wondrous assemblage at
Philadelphia of the Declaration of Independence; under the matchless
leadership of a Virginian yet more illustrious than Jefferson, the
Colonial army, with decimated ranks and tattered standards,
would have passed in review--all past suffering, sacrifice,
humiliation, and defeat forgotten in the hour of splendid triumph.
Yet later, and in the great convention over which Washington
presided, and in which Madison was the chief factor, they would
have witnessed the deathless principles of the historic Declaration
crystallized into the Federal compact, which was destined forever to
hold States and people in fraternal union.  They would have seen
a gallant people of the Old World--catching inspiration from the
New--casting off the oppression of centuries and, through baptism of
blood, fashioning a Republic upon that whose liberties they had so
signally aided to establish.  Yet later, and not France alone, but
Mexico and States extending far to the southward, substituting for
monarchical rule that of the people under written Constitutions
modeled after that of the great American Republic.  And yet more
marvellous, in Great Britain the divine right of kings an exploded
dogma; the royal successor to the Stuarts and George the Third only
a ceremonial figurehead in government; the House of Lords in its
death struggle; all real political power centred in the Commons,
and England--though still under the guise of monarchy--essentially
a republic.

"And what a grand factor Virginia has been in all that pertains to
human government in this Western world during the past three
centuries.  From the pen of one of her illustrious sons, George
Mason, came the 'Bill of Rights'--now in its essentials embedded
by the early amendments into our Federal Constitution; from that
of another, not alone the great Declaration, but the statutes
securing for his own State religious freedom, and the abolition of
primogeniture--the detested legacy of British ancestors.  His sword
returned to its scabbard with the achievement of the independence of
the colonies, and the mission of Washington was yet but half
accomplished.  To garner up the fruits of successful revolution by
ensuring stable government was the task demanding the loftiest
statesmanship.  The five years immediately succeeding our first
treaty of peace with Great Britain have been truly defined, 'our
period of greatest peril.'  It was fortunate, indeed, that Washington
was called to preside over the historic convention of '87, and that
his spirit--a yearning for an indissoluble union of the States--
permeated all its deliberations.  Fortunate, indeed, that in its
councils was his colleague and friend, the constructive statesman,
James Madison.  Inseparably associated for all time with the
formulation and interpretation of the great covenant are the names
of two illustrious Virginians--for all the ages illustrious Americans
--Madison, the father, and Marshall, the expounder of the

"It remained to another son of this first commonwealth, from the
high place to which he had been chosen, to enunciate in trenchant words,
at a crucial moment, a national policy which, under the designation
of 'the Monroe doctrine,' has been the common faith of three
generations of his countrymen and is to remain the enduring bar to
the establishment of monarchial government upon this western

"Four decades later, at the striking of the hour that noted the
inevitable 'breaking with the past,' it remained to still
another illustrious successor of Jefferson--alike of Virginian
ancestry, and born within her original domain--by authoritative
proclamation to liberate a race, and thereby, for all time, to give
enlarged and grander meaning to our imperishable declaration of
human rights.

"My countrymen, the little settlement planted just three centuries
ago near the spot upon which we have to-day assembled has under
divine guidance grown into a mighty nation.  Eighty millions of
people, proud of local traditions and achievements, yet looking
beyond the mere confines of their distinctive commonwealths,
find their chief glory in being citizens of the great Republic.
The mantle of peace is over our own land, and our accredited
representatives in the world's conference, at this auspicious hour,
are outlining a policy that looks to the establishment of enduring
peace among all the nations.  To-day, inspired by the sublime
lessons of the event we celebrate and with hearts of gratitude
to God for all he hath vouchsafed to our fathers and to us in
the past, let us take courage, and turn our faces hopefully,
reverently, trustingly to the future."



I recall with pleasure years of close personal friendship with
J. Sterling Morton.  He was a gentleman of lofty character and
recognized ability.  Much of his life was given to the public
service.  As Secretary of Agriculture he was in close touch with
President Cleveland during his last official term.

At the dedication of the monument erected to his memory at his
home, Nebraska City, October 28, 1905, I spoke as follows:

"I count it high privilege to speak a few words upon an occasion
so fraught with interest to this State, and to the entire country.
I gladly bear my humble tribute to the man whom I honored in life,
and whose memory I cherish.  A manlier man than Sterling Morton,
one more thoughtful, kind, considerate, self-reliant, hopeful, I
have not known.  Truly--

  'A man he seemed, of cheerful yesterdays,
  And confident to-morrows.'

Of few men could it more truly be said, 'He took counsel ever of
his courage--never of his fears.'  With firm convictions upon
pending vital issues, he did not shrink from the conflict.  His
antagonist he met in the open.  In the words of Lord Brougham, 'His
weapons were ever those of the warrior--never of the assassin.'

"This, is indeed no ordinary occasion.  Here and now, we unveil
a monument erected in honor of the memory of one who, alike in
private life and in public station, illustrated the noblest
characteristics of the American citizen.  Something of his life
and achievements we have heard with profound interest from the lips
of the chosen orator of this great occasion, ex-President Cleveland
--one indeed eminently fitted for the task.  The orator was worthy
the subject; the subject--honoring the memory of one of the
benefactors of his age--worthy the orator.

"In all the relations of life, the man whose memory we honor this day
was worthy the emulation of the young men who succeed him upon the
stage of the world.  With clear brain and clean hands he ably
and faithfully administered high public trusts.  He was in the
loftiest sense worthy the personal and official association of the
eminent Chief Magistrate at whose Council Board he sat, and
whose confidence he fully shared.

"Fortune, indeed, came with both hands full to Nebraska, when J.
Sterling Morton, in early manhood, selected this struggling frontier
State for his home.  How well, and with what large interest, he
repaid Nebraska for a confidence that knew no abatement, this noble
monument is the enduring witness.

"Under his guiding hand, a new day was added to the calendar.  The
glory is his of having called Arbor Day into being.  Touched by
his magic wand, millions of trees now beautify and adorn this
magnificent State.  It is no mere figure of speech to say that the
wilderness--by transition almost miraculous--has become a garden, the
desolate places been made to blossom as the rose.  'Tree-planting
day' is now one of the sacred days of this commonwealth.  Henceforth,
upon its annual recurrence, ordinary avocations are to be suspended,
and this day wholly set apart to pursuits which tend to beautify
the home, make glorious the landscape, and gladden the hearts of
all the people.  Inseparably associated in all the coming years
with this day and its memories will be the name of J. Sterling
Morton.  That he was its inspiration, is his abiding fame.

"In other times, monuments have been erected to men whose chief
distinction was, that desolation and human slaughter had marked
their pathways.  The hour has struck, and a new era dawned.  The
monument we now unveil is to one whose name brings no thoughts
of decimated ranks, or of desolated provinces, no memories of
beleaguered cities, of starving peoples, or of orphans' tears.  In
all the years, it will be associated with glorious peace.  Peace, 'that
hath her victories no less renowned than war'; peace, in whose
train are happy homes, songs of rejoicing, the glad laughter of
children, the planting of trees, and the golden harvest.

  'Soft peace she brings; wherever she arrives,
  She builds our quiet as she forms our lives;
  Lays the rough paths of peevish nature even,
  And opens in each heart a little heaven.'"



In 1895, Mrs. Julia Green Scott, of Bloomington, Illinois, established
a college in the mountains of Kentucky in honor of the memory of
her husband.  He was a native of Kentucky, and the institution
bears his honored name.

Upon the occasion of the dedication I spoke as follows:

"The dedication of the Matthew T. Scott, Jr., Collegiate Institute
marks an important epoch in the history of central eastern Kentucky.
It cannot be doubted that this institution will be potent for good
in moulding the character and fitting the youth of this and succeeding
generations for the important duties that pertain to citizenship
in a great Republic.  Is it too much to believe that this may be
reckoned as one of the many agencies in this land, that in the
outstretched years will inspire our youth with yet higher ideals of
duties that await them in life?  Would that the words I now repeat
of one of England's great statesmen could be indelibly impressed
upon the memory of all who may hereafter pass out from these walls:
'Be inspired with the belief that life is a great and noble calling;
not a mean and grovelling thing that we are to shuffle through
as we can, but an elevated and lofty destiny.'

"It is eminently fitting to this occasion, that I recall something
of the man whose honored name has been appropriately given to this
institution.  And yet, I am not unmindful of the fact that if in
life he would shrink from public mention of his name, or of
aught associated with it in the way of benefactions.  He was a
native of Kentucky--born in Fayette County, February 4, 1828.  His
father, of the same name, was an honored citizen of Lexington, and
for many years the leading banker of the State.  The son inherited
the high sense of personal honor, and the splendid capacity for
business, that for a lifetime so eminently characterized his father.
A graduate of Centre College at the age of eighteen, his fortunes
were soon cast in Central Illinois, where his remaining years were
spent, and where his ashes now repose.  During his early residence
in Illinois Mr. Scott realized--as few men did fully at that day
--the marvellous prosperity that surely awaited the development of
the resources of that great State.  It was the day of golden
opportunity for the man of wise forecast.  His investments were
timely; his business methods all upon the highest plane.  He became
in time a large landed proprietor, and stood in the van of the
advanced agriculturists of his day.  He formulated enduring systems
of tilling the soil, and making sure the munificent reward of labor
wisely bestowed upon this, the primal calling of man.  His methods
were in large measure adopted by others, and have proved no
unimportant factor in the development and prosperity of the
great agricultural interests of the State.

"Mr. Scott was in the largest sense a man of affairs.  He was ever
the safe counsellor in the many business enterprises of which he
was the founder.  It were scant praise to say he was possessed
of the highest integrity.  His was indeed an integrity that could know
no temptation.  Faithful to every obligation, he was incapable
of an ignoble act.  He was eminently a just man, possessing in a
marked degree the sturdy characteristics of his Scotch-Irish
ancestors.  His principle in action was:

  'For justice all place a temple,
  And all season Summer.'

"He was in no sense a self-seeker.  Deeply interested in public
affairs, and having the courage of his convictions upon the exciting
questions of the day, he was never a candidate for public office.
Declining the nomination tendered him by his party for Congress,
he chose the quiet of home rather than the turmoil of public life.
In the advocacy, however, of what he believed to be for the public weal,
'he took counsel ever of his courage, never of his fears.'  That he
possessed the ability to have acquitted himself with honor in
responsible positions of public trust, no one who knew him could doubt.

"Courteous to all with whom he came in contact, he was the highest
type of the old-school gentleman.  He exemplified in his daily life
the truth of the poet's words:

  'That best portion of a good man's life,
  His little, nameless, unremembered acts
  Of kindness and of love.'

"No man ever had a loftier appreciation of what was due to woman.
There was in very truth a relish of old-time chivalry in his bearing
in the presence of ladies.  He was never happier than when surrounded
by children, by whom he was ever trusted and loved.

"No higher tribute could be paid him than by the words spoken with
equal truth of another:  'With him the assured guardian of my
children, I could have pillowed my head in peace.'

"Holding steadily, and without reservation, to the Presbyterian
faith of his fathers, he was none the less imbued with a true
catholic spirit, and gave where needed, liberally of his abundance.
He was deeply touched by every tale of human sorrow,

  'His hand open as day to melting charity.'

"I may be pardoned for adding that Mr. Scott was supremely happy
in his domestic ties.  Blessed in all who gathered about his
hearthstone, his cup of happiness was full to overflowing.  All
who crossed his threshold felt that they were indeed in the sunshine
of the perfect home.  He sleeps in the beautiful cemetery near the
city he loved, his grave covered with flowers by those to whom
in life he had been a benefactor and friend.  To those to whom his
toils and cares were given, to kindred and friends, his memory will
ever be a precious heritage.  Truly,

  'the just
  Keeps something of his glory, in his dust.'

"I know of no words more fitting with which to close this poor
tribute to the man I honored and loved, than those of Dr. Craig in
his beautiful eulogy upon the Rev. Dr. Lewis W. Green, father of
Mrs. Julia G. Scott, the noble and gifted woman whose generosity
has made possible the founding of the Institution we now dedicate:

"'Society at large felt the impress of his noble character, his
polished breeding, and his widespread beneficence.  His determination
to excel, and that by means of faithful diligence and laborious
applications, should arouse our young men to like fidelity to their
increasing opportunities.  He was the most unselfish of men, the
most affectionate of friends, the humblest of Christians.  He owed
much to the soil from which he sprang.  He repaid that much, and
with large interest.'

"The Institution we now dedicate is just upon the threshold of what
we trust will prove an abundantly useful and honorable career.
And while we may not 'look into the seeds of time and say which
grain will grow and which will not,' yet we may well believe
that under judicious management, already assured, this will prove a
potent agency in the great work of education.

"In this connection the words of a former President of Transylvania
University, and of Centre College, Dr. Green, possess to-day as
deep significance as when uttered almost a half-century ago:

"'But it may be truly said, that no domestic instruction, however wise,
no political institution, however free, no social organization,
however perfect, no discoveries of science, however rapid or sublime,
no activity of the press--pouring forth with prolific abundance
its multitudinous publications--no accumulation of ancient learning
in stately libraries, no one, nor all of these together, can
supersede the education of the school; nay, all of them derive
their noblest elements and highest life from the instruction of
the living teacher.  The intelligence of families, the wisdom of
Governments, the freedom of nations, the progress of science itself,
and of all our useful arts, is measured by the condition and
character of our literary institutions. . . . It is from such as
these, that the world's great men have sprung.  It is from the
deep, granite foundations of society that the materials are gathered
to rear a superstructure of massive grandeur and enduring strength.
The God of nature has scattered broadcast over all our land and
our mountain heights, in our secluded valleys, and in many a forest
home, the choicest elements of genius; invaluable means of intellectual
wealth, the noblest treasures of the State.'

"The hour has struck, and the Matthew T. Scott, Jr., Collegiate
Institution enters now upon its sacred mission.

"May we not believe that here will be realized in full fruition
the fond hopes of those who have given it being? that as the years
come and go, there will pass out from its walls those who by diligent
application are fitted for the responsible duties that await them in
life, well equipped, it may be, to acquit themselves with honor,
in the high places of school, of church, or of State?"



The Chickamauga National Park was by act of Congress dedicated
September 19, 1895.  Senators Palmer, of Illinois, and Gordon,
of Georgia, were the orators of the occasion.  The immense audience
assembled included the Governors of twenty States and committees
of both Houses of Congress.  I presided on the occasion, and
delivered the following address:

"I am honored by being called to preside over the ceremonies of
this day.  By solemn decree of the representatives of the American
people, this magnificent Park, with its wondrous associations
and memories, is now to be dedicated for all time to national
and patriotic purposes.

"This is the fitting hour for the august ceremonies we now inaugurate.
To-day, by act of the Congress of the United States, the Chickamauga
and Chattanooga National Military Park is forever set apart from
all common uses, solemnly dedicated for all the ages to all the
American people.

"The day is auspicious.  It notes the anniversary of one of the
greatest battles known to history.  Here, in the dread tribunal of
last resort, valor contended against valor.  Here brave men struggled
and died for the right, 'as God gave them to see the right.'

"Thirty-two years have passed, and the few survivors of that
masterful day--victors and vanquished alike--again meet upon
this memorable field.  Alas, the splendid armies which rendezvoused
there are now little more than a procession of shadows.

  "'On fame's eternal camping-ground,
  Their silent tents are spread.'

"Our eyes now behold the sublime spectacle of the honored survivors
of the great battle coming together upon these heights once more.
They meet, not in deadly conflict, but as brothers, under one flag,
fellow-citizens of a common country, all grateful to God, that
in the supreme struggle, the Government of our fathers--our common
heritage--was triumphant, and that to all the coming generations
of our countrymen, it will remain 'an indivisible union of
indestructible States.'

"Our dedication to-day is but a ceremony.  In the words of the
immortal Lincoln at Gettysburg:  'But in a larger sense, we cannot
dedicate, we cannot consecrate, we cannot hallow this ground.  The
brave men living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it
far above our power to add or detract.'

"I will detain you no longer from listening to the eloquent words of
those who were participants in the bloody struggle--the sharers
alike in its danger and its glory."



A Bar meeting recalled by the mention of Mr. Ingersoll would be
worth while if it could only be described as it actually occurred.

At the opening of the December term of the Circuit Court in Woodford
in the year of grace 'fifty-nine, John Clark, Esq., announced that
a meeting of the Bar would be held at the courthouse at "early
candle-lighting" on that very evening, for the purpose of formulating
rules to be presented to the Court for its government during the

At the appointed hour, the lawyers, "home and foreign," being
promptly in attendance and the court-room crowded, an organization
was duly effected by the election of Colonel Shope, an able and
dignified barrister of the old school, as President.  As undisputed
spokesman of the occasion, Mr. Clark, at once moved the appointment
of a committee of five to prepare the aforementioned rules.  The
motion prevailing, _nem. con.,_ in accordance with the time-honored
usage, the mover of the resolution was duly appointed Chairman,
with Ingersoll, Shaw, Ewing, and the chronicler of these important
events as his coadjutors.  Upon the retirement of the committee,
the rules already prepared by Clark were read and promptly approved,
and that gentleman instructed to present them to the Bar meeting
--then in patient waiting.

As the recognized parliamentarian of the occasion--with the proposed
rules in safe keeping--was in the van, upon the return to the
court-room Ingersoll quietly proposed to his three untitled associates
that, after the adoption of the resolutions, we should _vote
down Clark's motion to adjourn_ and thereby remain all night in
session.  In approved form, and with a dignity that would have done
no discredit to a high-church bishop, the rules were read off by
the Chairman and agreed to without a dissenting voice.

After a brief silence, Mr. Clark arose and said:  "Mr. President,
if there is no further business before this meeting, I move we
do now adjourn."  The motion was duly seconded by Welcome P. Brown,
who had been Probate Judge of McLean County far back in the thirties,
and postmaster of the struggling village of Bloomington when Jackson
was President.  President Shope promptly arose and in the blandest
possible terms submitted:  "Gentlemen of the Bar, all who are in
favor of the motion to adjourn will please say, Aye."  Clark, Brown,
and a half-a-dozen others at once voted, "Aye."  "Those opposed to
the motion to adjourn will please say, No," was the alternative
then submitted by the impartial presiding officer.  Ingersoll, his
confederates, and a sufficient contingent won over quietly voted, "No."
"The motion is lost," observed the President, resuming his seat.
"What is the further pleasure of the meeting?"  The silence of the
grave for a time prevailed.  Ingersoll and his followers deporting
themselves with a solemnity well befitting an occasion for prayer.
Again arising, the chairman of the committee--in a voice less rotund
than before--said:  "Well, Mr. President, if there is no _further_
business before this meeting, I move we do now adjourn."  Duly
seconded, the motion was again put, Clark and half a dozen
others voting as before.  "Those opposed," remarked the President--
in tones perceptibly less conciliatory than an hour earlier--"will
say, No."  The scarcely audible, but none the less effective "no"
prevailed, the leader meanwhile giving no sign and apparently rapt
as if unravelling the mysteries beyond the veil.

A silence that could be felt now in very truth fell upon the meeting
in the old courthouse assembled.  Even the bystanders seemed
impressed that something far out of the ordinary was happening.

Receiving little in the way of encouragement, the Chairman of
the late committee, as he dubiously looked around upon the forms
of the silent majority--each of whom sat apparently buried in
thought that touched the very depths,--again and for the last time
addressed the presiding officer:

  "Mr. President, I move _that we adjourn."_

Conclusions being again tried in wonted parliamentary form between
the opposing forces, with like result as before, the venerable
president,--by way of prelude first giving full vent to an exclamation
nowhere to be found in the Methodist "book of discipline,"--at once
indignantly vacated the chair, and literally shook the dust of the
court-room from his feet.  The others "stood not upon the order of
their going," and although fifty years have come and gone, that
identical Bar meeting in the old courthouse at Metamora _is still in
session,_--never having been officially adjourned even to this day.



Ex-Senator Lyman Trumbull called upon me at the Vice-President's
Chamber a few months before his death.  It was upon the occasion
of his last visit to Washington.  He pointed out to me with much
interest the seat he had occupied for many years in the Senate.
The Senators to whom I introduced him had all come in since his
day.  His associates in that chamber, with three or four exceptions,
had passed beyond the veil.

The public career of Mr. Trumbull began nearly two-thirds of a
century ago.  He was distinguished as a judge, and later as an able
and active participant in exciting debates in the Senate, extending
from the repeal of the Missouri Compromise to the impeachment of
President Johnson.  He was a member when the sessions of the Senate
were held in the old chamber, and Cass, Crittenden, Douglas, Tombs,
and Jefferson Davis were among his early official associates.
As Chairman of the Judiciary Committee he had reported the
Thirteenth and Fourteenth Amendments to the Constitution of the
United States.

In the course of my conversation with him upon the occasion
first mentioned, I inquired whether he had ever met either Webster,
Clay, or Calhoun.  He replied that it was a matter of deep regret to
him that he had never seen either Clay or Webster, but that he had
in his early manhood heard a masterful speech from Mr. Calhoun.
Mr. Trumbull had then just been graduated from an eastern college;
and on his way to Greenville, Georgia, to take charge of a school,
he spent a few days in Charleston, South Carolina.  This was in
1833, and the speech of Mr. Calhoun was in vindication of his course
in the Senate in voting for the Compromise Bill of Mr. Clay, which
provided for the gradual reduction of the tariff.  The alleged
injustice of the tariff law then in force had been the prime cause
of the "nullification" excitement precipitated by South Carolina
at that eventful period.  The proclamation of President Jackson,
it will be remembered, proved the death-blow, and the nullification
excitement soon thereafter subsided.  Mr. Trumbull told me that he
distinctly recalled John C. Calhoun, his commanding presence and
splendid argument, as he addressed the large assemblage.  As a
clear-brained logician--whose statement alone was almost unanswerable
argument--he thought Mr. Calhoun unsurpassed by any statesman
our country had known.  Mr. Trumbull added that at the close of
Mr. Calhoun's speech before mentioned, amid great enthusiasm,
"Hayne! Hayne!" was heard from every part of the vast assemblage.
For an hour or more he then listened spell-bound to Robert Y. Hayne,
the formidable antagonist even of Webster in a debate now historic.
Mr. Trumbull said that of the two generations of public men he had
heard, he had never listened to one more eloquent than Hayne.



During a sojourn of some weeks on the western coast of Scotland,
I was the guest for a time of Mr. Stewart, the head of what remained
of a once powerful clan in the Highlands.  My host was a distinguished
member of the London Bar, but spent his Summers at the home of his
ancestors a few miles out from Alpin.  Here, in as romantic a
locality as is known even to the Highlands, with his kindred about
him he enjoyed a full measure of repose from the distracting cares
of the great metropolis.  At the time of my visit his brother,
an officer of the British army, just returned from India, was with
him.  Both gentlemen wore kilts for the time; and all the appointments
of the house were reminders of bygone centuries when border warfare
was in full flower, forays upon the Lowlands of constant occurrence,
and the principle of the clans in action,

  "Let him take who has the power
  And let him hold who can."

At the bountifully furnished board of my Highland host there was
much "upon the plain highway of talk" I will not soon forget.  And
then, with the gathering shadows in the ancestral hall, with the
rude weapons of past generations hanging upon every wall, and
the stirring strains of the bagpipe coming from the distance, it
was worth while to listen to the Highland legends that had been
handed down from sire to son.

Not far away was the old castle of Dunstaffnage, which in its prime
had been the scene of innumerable tournaments and battles that have
added many pages to Scottish annals.  Within the enclosure of
the old castle sleeps the dust of long ago kings--the veritable
grave of Macbeth being readily pointed out to inquiring travellers.

The conversation around the hearthstone of my host turned to the
famous island of the Inner Hebrides, Iona, with its wonderful
history reaching back to the sixth century.  The ruins of the
old monastery, built fourteen hundred years ago by the fugitive
Saint, Columba, are well worth visiting.  The dust of the early
kings of Norway, Ireland, and Scotland rest within these ancient
walls, and it is gratifying to know that here even the ill-fated

  "After life's fitful fever sleeps well."

It would have been passing strange, with host and guests all of
Scottish lineage, if there had been no mention of Robbie Burns,
for in old Scotia, whether in palace or hovel, the one subject that
never tires is the "ploughman poet of Ayr."  A little incident
of slightly American relish which I related the evening of my
departure needed no "surgical operation" to find appropriate

Senator Beck of Kentucky was a Scotchman.  He was in the highest
sense a typical Scotchman--lacking nothing, either of the brawn,
brain, or brogue, of the most gifted of that race.  It is needless
to say he was a lover of Burns.  From "Tam O'Shanter" to "Mary
in Heaven," all were safely garnered in his memory--to be rolled
out in rich, melodious measure at the opportune moment.  The close
friend and associate of Senator Beck, when the cares of State were
for a time in abeyance, and the fishing season at its best, was
"old Smith," superintendent of the Botanical Gardens, also a
Scotchman, and likewise in intense degree a devotee of Burns.  The
bond of union between the man of flowers and the Kentucky statesman
was complete.

Now, it so fell out that a newly elected member of the House, from
the Green River district, one day called upon his distinguished
colleague of the Senate, and requested a note of introduction to
the superintendent of the Botanical Gardens, as he wished to procure
some flowers to send a lady constituent then in the city.  "Certainly,
certainly," replied the ever-obliging statesman:  "I will give you
a line to old Smith."  Just as the delighted member was departing
with the letter in hand, Senator Beck remarked, in his peculiarly
snappy Scotch accent, "Now, Tom, if you will only tell old Smith
that you are a great admirer of his countryman, Robbie Burns, he
will give you all the flowers in the conservatory."  The member,
who knew as little of Burns as he did of the "thirty-nine articles,"
departed in high feather.

Almost immediately thereafter, presenting his letter, he was received
with great cordiality by the superintendent and assured that any
request of Senator Beck would be cheerfully granted.  Just as he
was reaching out for the fragrant bouquet the superintendent was
graciously presenting, the closing words of the Senator were
indistinctly recalled, and in a manner indicating no small measure
of self-confidence, the member remarked, "By the way, Mr. Smith,
I am a great admirer of your countryman, _Jimmy_ Burns."  "Jimmy
Burns!  Jimmy Burns!  Jimmy Burns!" exclaimed the overwhelmingly
indignant Scotchman, _"Jimmy_ Burns!  _Depart instantly, sir!"_

The member from Green River district _departed_ as bidden, taking no
thought of the flowers; delighted--as he often asservated--to have
escaped even with his life.



No better place can be found for studying that most interesting of
all subjects, Man, than in our courts of justice.  Indeed, what a
readable book that would be which related the best things which
have occurred at the bar!

Judge Baldwin conferred an inestimable blessing upon our profession
when he wrote "The Flush Times," a book that will hold a place
in our literature as long as there is a lawyer left on earth.
To two generations of our craft this book has furnished agreeable and
delightful entertainment.  To the practitioner "shattered with the
contentions of the great hall," its pages have been as refreshing as
the oasis to the travel-stained pilgrim.

The late Justice Field, long his associate upon the supreme bench of
California, told me that Judge Baldwin was one of the most genial and
delightful men he had ever known, and certainly he must have been to
have written "Cave Burton," "My First Appearance at the Bar," "A
Hung Court," and "Ovid Bolus, Esq., Attorney-at-law and Solicitor in

Almost every Bar has some tradition or incident worth preserving
--something in the way of brilliant witticisms or repartee that
should not be wholly lost.  Of the race of old-time lawyers--of
which Mr. Lincoln was the splendid type--but few remain.  Of the
survivors, I know of no better representative than Proctor Knott
of Kentucky.  The possessor of ability of the highest order, and
of splendid attainments as well, he is of all men the best story-teller
this country of ours has known.  Among his delighted auditors in
and out of Congress have been men from every section and of exalted
public station.  For some of the incidents to be related I am
indebted to Governor Knott.  The obligation would be much greater if
the stories could be retold in manner and form as in the days gone
by, and upon occasions never to be forgotten when they fell from
his own lips.

If, however, even fairly well I might garner up and hand down some
of the experiences of the generation of lawyers now passing, I
would feel that I had, in some humble measure, discharged that
obligation that Lord Bacon says, "every man owes to his profession."


What lawyer has not, at some time, in the trial of a case asked
just _one question_ too many?  I know of nothing better along that
line of inquiry than the following related by Governor Knott.
He was attending the Circuit Court in one of the Green River counties
in Kentucky, when the case of the "Commonwealth _versus_ William
Jenkins" was called for trial.  The aforesaid William was under
indictment for having bitten off the ear of the prosecuting witness.
Fairly strong but by no means conclusive testimony against the
defendant had been given when the State "rested."

A lawyer of the old school, who still carried his green bag into
Court, and who never wearied of telling of his conflicts at the
bar with Grundy, Holt, and Ben Hardin, in their palmiest days, was
retained for the defence.  His chief witness was Squire Barnhouse,
who lived over on the "Rolling Fork."  He was the magistrate for
his precinct, deacon in the church, and the recognized oracle
for the neighborhood.  Upon direct examination, in the case _at
bar,_ he testified that "he knowed the defendant William Jenkins; had
knowed him thirty year or more; knowed his father and mother afore
him."  Inquired of then as to the general reputation of the defendant,
as to his being "a peaceable and law-abiding citizen," he was found
to be all that could be reasonably desired.

Squire Barnhouse was then asked whether he was present at the Caney
Fork muster, where it was alleged that the defendant had bitten
off the ear of the prosecuting witness.  It turned out that he was
present.  Further questioned as to whether he had paid particular
attention to the fight, he replied that he did; that he "had never
seed Billy in a fout before, and he had a kind of family pride in
seein' how _he would handle himself."_  Further questioned as to
whether he saw the defendant bite off the ear of the prosecuting
witness he replied, "No, sir, nothin' uv the kind, nothin' uv the kind."
This was followed by the inquiry as to whether his opportunities were
such that he would most probably have seen it, if it had occurred.
"In course I would, in course I would," was the emphatic reply.

The witness was here turned over to the Commonwealth's attorney,
who declined to cross-examine, and Squire Barnhouse was in the act
of leaving the stand when in an evil hour it occurred to defendant's
counsel to ask one question more.

"By the way, Squire, _just one more question,_ just where you stand;
now I understood you to say"--repeating the answers already given;
"now just this question, did you see anything occur while the fight
was going on, or after it was over, that would lead you to believe
that this defendant had bitten off the ear of the prosecuting

The Squire, half down the witness stand, answered, "No, sir, nothing
uv the kind," then, slowly and thoughtfully, "nothing uv the kind."
A moment's pause.  "Well, since you mention it, I do remember that
just as Billy rizened up offen him the last time, I seed him spit out
a piece of ear, _but whose ear it was,_ I don't pertend to know."


In the good County of Scotland, in the State of Missouri, back
in the ante-bellum days there lived one Solomon Davis, whose chronic
horror was card-playing.  The evils of this life were in his judgment
largely to be attributed to this terrible habit.  It was his belief
that if the Grand Jury would only take hold of the matter in the
right spirit, a stop could be put to the "nefarious habit of
_card-playing,_ which was ruining the morals of so many young men in
Scotland County."  This was the burden of his discourse in and out
of season.  His ardent desire that he himself should be called
on the Grand Jury to the accomplishment of the end mentioned was
at length gratified.  At a certain term of court he was not only
summoned upon the Grand Jury, but duly appointed its foreman.

Upon the adjournment of court for dinner, immediately thereafter, one
Ben Mason, the wit of the bar,--and not himself wholly _unacquainted_
with the pastime that involved spades, kings, and even queens,--
ardently congratulated the new foreman upon his appointment, assuring
him that now his opportunity had come to put to an end, by the
omnipotent power of the Grand Jury, "to the nefarious habit of
card-playing which was ruining the morals of so many young men in
Scotland County."

"And now, Squire," continued Ben, "I can give you the name of a
gentleman who doesn't play himself, but is always around where
playing is going on, and he can tell you who plays, where they
play, how much is bet, and all about it."

Delighted at this apparently providential revelation, the Squire
had a subpoena forthwith issued for the witness mentioned, one
Ranzey Sniffle, a half-witted fellow who had never taken or expected
to take a part in the game himself, but whose cup of happiness was
full to the brim when, in return for punching up the fires, mixing
the drinks, and snuffing the candle, he was permitted _to see
the play actually going on._

Trembling with apprehension at the dread summons to appear before the
"Grand Inquest"--if it had been three centuries earlier at Saragossa
it could scarcely have appeared more alarming--the witness was
ushered into the immediate presence of the awful tribunal over
which Squire Davis was now presiding.  After taking the customary oath,
and telling his name, age, and where he lived, Mr. Sniffle was
questioned by the foreman as to his personal knowledge of any game
or games of cards being played for money, or any valuable thing,
within one year last past, within the said County of Scotland, and
solemnly warned, if he had any such knowledge, to proceed in his
own way, and tell all about it; to tell when and where it was, _who
were present,_ and what amount, if any, was bet.

Recovering himself a little by this time, the witness began:

"The last time I seed them playin', Squire, was at Levi Myers's
sto'; they sot in about sundown last Saturday night, and never
loosened their grip until Monday mornin' about daylight."

"Now, Mr. Sniffle," interrupted the Squire with great dignity,
"will you proceed in your own way, to give to the gentlemen of this
Grand Jury _the names_ of the persons who were thus engaged not
only in violating the statute law of Missouri, but in violating
the law of God by desecrating the holy Sabbath?"

"Well, Squire," continued the witness, slowly counting off on
his fingers, "thar was Levi Myers, Sammy Hocum, Moss Johnson, Josiah
Davis,"--"Suspend, Mr. Sniffle, _suspend,"_ commanded the Squire
with great indignation, and turning to his official associates, he
continued, "I am aware, gentlemen of the Grand Jury, that my son
Josiah is sometimes present when cards are being played, but he
assures me on his honor as a gentleman, that he never _takes part,_
and doesn't even know one card from another.  Now, Mr. Witness, do
you undertake, under the solemn sanction of an oath, to say that
my son Josiah was _engaged_ in the game?  By the way, Mr. Sniffle,
do you understand the nature of an oath?"

"No, Squire," slowly replied the witness, "I dun know as I do."

"Don't you know _what will become of you,_ Ranze, if you swear to a
lie?" quickly asked a juryman from a back seat.

"Yas, in course, if I swar to a lie, they'll send me to the
penitentiary, and then I'll go to hell afterwards," replied Mr.

The _competency_ of the witness thus appearing, the foreman

"Now, Mr. Sniffle, do you, under the solemn sanction of an oath,
undertake to say that my son Josiah was _engaged_ in that game?"

"I dun know as I adzackly understand the meanin' of bein' engaged in
the game; but I seed Josiah a-dealin' the papes, when his time come
to fling a card he flung it, and uv'ry now and then, _he rech
out and drug in the chicerokum._  I dun know as I adzackly understand
'bout bein' engaged in the game, but if _that_ were bein' engaged,
then Josiah were _engaged!"_


Seldom have more significant words been uttered than those of John
Randolph of Roanoke, when told that a certain man had been denouncing
him.  "Denouncing me," replied Randolph, with astonishment, "that is
strange, _I never did him a favor."_

The voice of but one John Randolph of Roanoke has mingled in the
contentions of the Great Hall.  That was no cause for regret, as
for a lifetime he was the dread of political foes and friends alike.

A colleague from "the valley" probably remembered him well to
the last.  That colleague, recently elected to fill a vacancy caused
by the death of a member of long service, signalized his entrance into
the House by an unprovoked attack upon Mr. Randolph.  The latter, from
his seat near by, listened with apparent unconcern to the fierce
personal assault.  To the surprise of all, no immediate reply
was made to the speech, and the new member flattered himself, no
doubt, that the "grim sage" was for once completely unhorsed.

A few days later, however, Randolph, while discussing a bill of
local importance, casually remarked:  "This bill, Mr. Speaker, lost
its ablest advocate in the death of my lamented colleague, _whose seat
is still vacant!"_


It will be remembered that the will of Stephen Girard of Philadelphia,
after a splendid bequest for the establishment of the great University
which bears his name, provided that no minister of the Gospel should
ever be permitted to enter the grounds of the institution.

It so happened upon a time, that Horace Greeley, wearing white hat
and cravat, and with his ministerial cast of countenance well in
evidence, sauntered up to the gate of the Girard institution and
was about to enter.  He was instantly stopped by the keeper, who
bluntly told him that he could not enter.

"What the hell is the reason I can't?" demanded Greeley.

"Oh!  I beg your pardon," apologized the astonished gate-keeper,
_"walk right in, sir; you can."_


Judge Allen of southern Illinois, a leading member of Congress a
half-century ago, during a recent address to the old settlers of
McLean County related an incident of early days on the Wabash.
Population was sparse, and the common school was yet far in the
future.  The teacher who could read, write, and "cipher" to the
"single rule of three" was well equipped for his noble calling.
Lamentable failures upon the part of aspirants to attain even
the modest standard indicated, were by no means of rare occurrence.

Back in the thirties, an individual of by no means prepossessing
appearance presented himself to Judge Allen's father, the Magistrate,
Ruling Elder, and _ex-officio_ school director for his precinct,
and asked permission "to keep school."  Being interrogated as to
what branches he could teach, the three R's--readin', 'ritin', and
'rithmetic--were, with apparent confidence, at once put in

"Have you ever taught geography and English grammar?"  was the next

With a much less confident tone, as he had probably never heard of
either, he replied:

"I have teached geography some, but as for English grammar, I wouldn't
'low one of 'em to come into my school-house.  _'Merican grammar
is good enough for me!"_


A touching scene occurred in the House of Representatives a number
of years ago, when an aged member from New Jersey arose, and for
the first time addressed the Speaker.  All eyes were turned in his
direction as he stood calmly awaiting recognition.  He was tall,
spare, and erect.  His venerable appearance and kindly expression,
coupled with most courteous manners, at once commanded attention.
As in husky tones he again said, "Mr. Speaker!" there came from the
farthest end of the Great Hall in a whisper but distinctly heard
by all, the word, "Sweet Alice, Ben Bolt."  A moment later, and
from the floor and gallery many voices blended in the familiar
refrain, "Don't you remember sweet Alice Ben Bolt?"

The ovation which immediately followed was such as is rarely
witnessed in the Great Hall.  Business was suspended for the moment,
and the hand of the new member warmly grasped by the chosen
representatives of all parties and sections.  It was an inspiring tribute,
one worthily bestowed.  The member was Thomas Dunn English, author
of the little poem, sung in palace and cottage, which has found
its way into all languages, and touched all hearts.


The mention of the "Maine Law" recalls a little episode that occurred
in the early days in the good county of McLean.  One Duncan--no
kinsman to him who had been

  "So clear in his great office"--

was again a candidate for the Legislature.  The temperance question,
in some of its many phases, was then giving much trouble to aspirants
to public place.  In the midst of his opening speech at the old
courthouse, the candidate was interrupted by one of the inquisitive
men who always appear when least wanted, with the question:
"Mr. Duncan, are you _in favor_ of the Maine Law?"  "Yes, yes,"
quickly replied the candidate, "I am coming to that very soon."
Shying off to the tariff, the improvement of Western rivers, and
the necessity of rigid economy in all public expenditures, our
candidate was about to close when the same troublesome inquiry,
"Mr. Duncan, _are you in favor_ of the Maine Law?"  again greeted his
unwilling ears.  "Oh, yes," exclaimed the orator, in tone and manner
indicating much thankfulness.  "I am glad you called my attention to
his subject; I was about to forget it.  My fellow-citizens have
a right to know my views upon all public questions, and I have
nothing to conceal.  I have no respect for candidates who attempt to
dodge any of these great questions.  I have given you fully, my
views upon the tariff, upon a general system of internal improvements,
and something of my own services in the past; and now thanking you
for your attention, will ----"  "Mr. Duncan, are you _in favor of
the Maine Law?"_ were the words that again escaped the lips of the
importunate inquisitor.

Fully appreciating his dilemma--with constituents about equally
divided upon the dangerous question--the candidate at once
nerved himself for the answer upon which hung his hopes and fears and
boldly replied;  "Yes, sir, I am in favor of the law, but _everlastingly
opposed to its enforcement!"_


One of the candidates upon the ticket with Mr. Tilden when he
was elected Governor of New York, was the late William Dorshemer.
Judge Maynard told me that he was present in the library of Mr.
Tilden when Dorshemer called, immediately after the full election returns
had been received.  Tilden's popularity at the time was very great
--growing out of his successful prosecution of the noted Canal
ring,--and resulted in the triumph of the ticket of which he was
the head.  Mr. Dorshemer, the Lieutenant-Governor elect, was greatly
delighted that his own majority exceeded that of the more distinguished
candidate for the Chief Executive office.  During the conversation,
Dorshemer remarked to Tilden:  "Your majority is only fifty thousand,
while mine is fifty-one thousand, five hundred."  "Yes, yes,"
quickly remarked Tilden; "you got the fifteen hundred; _I gave you
the fifty thousand!"_


The generation now passing has known no man of keener wit than the
late William R. Travers, of New York.  An impediment of speech not
infrequently gave zest and vim to his words, when they finally
found utterance.  He was for a lifetime steeped in affairs of great
concern and among his associates were prominent factors in the
commercial and political world.

On his revisiting Baltimore some years after his removal to New
York, an old acquaintance remarked, "You seem to stutter more in
New York than you did here, Mr. Travers."  To this the brief reply
at length came, "Have to--_it's a bigger place."_

Back in the days when Gould and Fisk were names to conjure with in
the mart and on the board; when railroads and gold mines were
but pawns upon the chessboard of "money changers and those who sold
doves"; when "Black Friday" was still fresh in the memories of
thousands, this incident is said to have occurred.

To weightier belongings, Gould and Fisk had added by way of pastime
a splendid steamer to ply between Fall River and New York.  Upon
its trial voyage, Travers was the guest of its owners.  The
appointments of the vessel were gorgeous in the extreme, and in
the large saloon were suspended life-size portraits of Gould and
of Fisk.  After a promenade of an hour in company with the originals,
Travers suddenly paused in front of the portraits, gazed earnestly
at each in turn, and then--with eyes fixed on the intervening space
--slowly ejaculated:  _"Where's Christ?"_


The following, told with happy effect by Colonel W. D. Haynie of
the Chicago Bar, probably has no parallel in theological literature.
A colored brother who felt called upon to preach, applied to the
Bishop of his church for license to exercise the sacred office.
The Bishop, far from being favorably impressed by the appearance
of the candidate, earnestly inquired whether he had read the Bible,
and was familiar with appropriate stories to relate, as occasion
might require, to his Sunday school and congregation.  The answer was,
"Boss, I has read dat book from led to led."  In response to the
request of the good Bishop that he would repeat a Bible story, the
applicant for Holy Orders began:

"One time dar wus a wicked ole King, an' his name was Ahab; an' he
live in Babylon; an' he wus a mighty warrior; an' one day he wuz
marchin' along at de head uv his army fru de streets of Babylon,
an' he seed Bersheby standin' up on de house-top; an' he said to
his soldiers, 'Bring me Bersheby fur my wife'; an' day brung him
Bersheby fur his wife.  An' ole Ahab he march a long ways off, and
fit a big battle, an' tuk a hull lot of prisoners; an' cum
a-marchin' back fru de streets of Babylon, wid de brass bans
a-playin', and de stars an' stripes a-floatin'; an' Bersheby she wuz
a-standin' on de house-top, and she holler out,

"'How did you cum out wid' em, old Ahab?'

"An' it make him powerful mad you know, an he say to his soldiers,
'Frow her down to me.'  And dey frowd her down to him; and den
he say, 'Frow her down to me _seven_ times'; and dey frowd her down
seven times; and den he say, 'Frow her down to me _seventy times
seven times!'_ and dey frowed her down to him seventy times
seven times; an' po' ole Bersheby, she crawl away and lay down
at de rich man's gate, and de dogs come and lick her wouns, and
when dey gevered he up, dar was 'leven basketfuls left, an' _whose
wife will she be in de resurrection?"_



As we well know, lawyers generally entertain an exceedingly exalted
opinion of their profession.  Textbooks, opinions of courts,
addresses innumerable to graduating students, all bear witness
to the fact that our noble profession is the most honorable of
human callings, the safeguard of society, the palladium of our

True, some uncharitable layman has suggested:  "Yes, all this, and
more, has been said a thousand times, _but always by lawyers."_

There are persons yet in life, who, practically at least, hold with
Aaron Burr, that "law is that which is boldly asserted and plausibly
maintained," and that lawyers, like the Roman augurs of old, always
smile when they meet one another on the street.  The by no means
exalted opinion of two men as to "our noble profession" will appear
from the following.

A few days after Knott was admitted to the bar, he was sitting
alone in his office, waiting for clients, when a one-gallowsed,
awkward-looking fellow from the "brush" walked in without ceremony,
dropped into the only vacant chair, and inquired:  "Air you a
lawyer, mister?"  Assuming the manner of one of the regulars, Knott
unhesitatingly answered that he was.  "Well," said the visitor, "I
thought I would drap in and git you to fetch a few suits for me."
Picking up his pen with the air of a man with whom suing people
was an everyday, matter-of-course sort of affair, Knott said:  "Who
did you wish to sue?"  To which--with a prolonged yawn--the
prospective client drawled out:  "I ain't particular, Mister, I
jest thought I'd get you to pick out a few skerry fellows _that
would complemise easy!"_

The remaining incident is an experience of my own, when, at the
age of twenty-two, I had hung out my sign in the then county-seat of
Old Woodford.

My first client had retained me to obtain a divorce because of
abandonment during the two years last past by the sometime partner
of his joys and sorrows.  The bill for divorce was duly filed; but
on "the coming in of the answer," a continuance of the suit, for
cause shown, was granted to the defendant.

At an early hour on the morning thereafter, my client called, and I
soon discovered he was in a frame of mind by no means joyous.  The
disappointment he expressed at the continuance of his suit was
evidently sincere.  My explanation of the impossibility of preventing
it, and the confident hope I held out that he would certainly
get his divorce at the next term, evidently gave him little relief.
He at length intimated a desire to have a confidential talk with
me.  I took him into my "private office" (that has a professional
sound, but as a matter of fact my office had but one room, and that
was "open as day" to everybody) and assured him that whatever he
said to me would be in the strictest confidence.  Feeling that I
was on safe ground, I now spoke in a lofty tone of the sacred
relation existing between counsel and client, and that any
communication he desired to make would be as safe as within his
own bosom, "or words to that effect."  Relieved, apparently, by
the atmosphere of profound secrecy that now enveloped us, he
"unfolded himself" to the effect that some years before he had been
deeply in love with an excellent young lady in his neighborhood,
but for some trifling cause he could now hardly explain, he had in
a pique suddenly turned his attentions to another to whom he was
soon united in the holy bonds that he was now so anxious to have
sundered by the strong arm of the law.

A deeply drawn sigh was here the prelude to the startling revelation,
that since his present sea of troubles had encompassed him about
the old flame had been rekindled in his heart.  I now candidly
informed him that I was wholly inexperienced in such matters, but as
his counsel I would take the liberty to advise him of the monstrous
impropriety of any visible manifestation or expression of the newly
revived attachment.  This was followed by the comforting assurance
upon my part, however, that when divorced, he would be lawfully
entitled to re-enter the matrimonial lists in such direction, and at
whatever gait seemed to him best.  The sigh to which the above was
the prelude, hardly prepared me for the startling revelation
that another fellow was now actually keeping company with the young
lady.  My client's feelings here overcame him for a moment, and he
complained bitterly of his hard fate in being "tied up," while the
coast was clear to his competitor.  After a moment of deep study,
he expressed the opinion in substance, that if his rival could only
be held in check until the divorce was granted, he was confident
all would be well.

I here told him that this was all beyond my depth, and along a line
where it would be impossible for me to render him any service.
Hitching his chair up a little closer, and looking at me earnestly
he said:  "You are a good-looking young fellow, and rather a
glib talker, and I will give you this hundred dollars if you will cut
that fellow out until I get my divorce!"  Declining with some show
of indignation, as well as surprise--for I was _young_ then in the
practice--I assured him that his proposal was out of the domain of
professional service, and could not be thought of for a moment.  In
a tone indicating deep astonishment, he said:  "Why, I thought a
lawyer would do anything for money!"

"Yes," I replied, "most anything, but this is the exception; and
besides, if the young lady is as beautiful as you say she is,
you would be _in greater danger from me_ at the end of your probation
than from the other fellow."  "Oh, Lord, I hadn't thought of that,"
he exclaimed, as he pocketed his hundred dollars, picked up his
hat, and left my office.

Near the close of the following term of court, as the decree was
being signed granting the divorce aforementioned, I approached
my client as he sat solitary in the rear of the court-room, and
earnestly congratulated him upon the fact that he was now free and
at liberty to fight his own battles.  "Yes," he replied, with a
groan that touched the heart of the tipstaff near by, "but it's
too late now; _she married that other fellow last Thursday."_


Upon a time, far back, Ballou, of happy memory, was Judge of the
Woodford Circuit Court.  A young lawyer, after diligent preparation
and exhaustive argument, confidently submitted his first case to
the tender mercies of the Court.  To his utter dismay, His Honor
promptly rendered a decision adverse to the contention of the
youthful barrister.  Deeply humiliated by his defeat, the latter
exclaimed:  "I am _astonished_ at such a decision!"  The admonition
of a brother, to patience, failing to accomplish its charitable
purpose, the irate attorney asservated more excitedly than before,
his astonishment at such a decision.  Whereupon the judge
ordered the clerk to enter up a fine of five dollars against the
offending attorney for contempt of court.  Silence now reigned
supreme, and the victim of judicial wrath sank back into his seat,
utterly dismayed.  The strain of the situation was at length
relieved in part by an old lawyer from the opposite side of the
trial table, slowly arising and solemnly remarking:  "Something
might be said, Your Honor, in extenuation of the conduct of my
young friend.  It is his first case, one in which he felt the
deepest interest, and upon the successful issue of which, he had
founded his fondest hopes.  I trust Your Honor, upon due reflection,
will remit this fine.  It is true, he has with much vehemence
expressed his astonishment at the decision of the Court.  But
his youth and inexperience must surely be taken into account.  Ah,
Your Honor, when our young brother has practised before this court
as long as some of us have, _he will not be surprised at any decision
Your Honor may make!"_


Sydney Smith is credited with saying that it required a surgical
operation to get a joke into a Scotchman's head.  And not a bad
reply is that of the Scotchman:  "Yes, an _English_ joke."

It is unnecessary, however, to cross the Atlantic in order to find
a few well authenticated cases where the surgical operation would have
been required.  The Hon. Samuel H. Treat, United States Judge of
Southern Illinois, was one of the ablest and most upright of judges,
and possibly--on or off the bench--the most solemn-appearing of
all of the sons of men.

This little incident was related by Judge Weldon.  Soon after
the close of the War, he one day told Judge Treat a story he had
heard upon a recent visit to Washington.  McDougall, formerly of
Illinois, but at that time a Senator from California, had become
very dissipated near the close of his term.  At a late hour one
night a policeman on the Avenue found him in an utterly helpless
condition--literally in the gutter.  As the officer was making
an ineffectual attempt to get the unfortunate statesman upon his
feet, he inquired:  "Who are you?"  The reply was:  "This morning I
was Senator McDougall, but now I am _Sewered!"_

A few moments later Mr. Hay came into the office and Judge Treat
said:  "Hay, Weldon has just told me a good story about our old
friend McDougall.  Mac was in the gutter, and a policeman asked
him who he was, and Mac told him, 'This morning I was Senator
McDougall, but now I am the Hon. William H. Seward!'"


Upon the occasion of the celebration of the fiftieth anniversary
of the organization of the City of Bloomington, the oration was
delivered by the Hon. James S. Ewing, late Minister to Belgium.
In the course of his address, he related the following incident:

"In the early history of this county, two boys one day went into
the old courthouse to hear a lawsuit tried.  There were assembled eight
young lawyers, not all of them engaged in the trial, but giving
strict attention to the proceedings.  It was not a suit of great

"The Court was presided over by Samuel H. Treat, who afterwards
became a United States District Judge and one of the most distinguished
lawyers and jurists in the State.

"One of the lawyers was David Davis, first a noted lawyer, then
a circuit judge, then a judge of the Supreme Court of the United
States, then a United States Senator and acting President of the
Senate; a citizen of State and national fame whom the people of
Bloomington loved and delighted to honor.

"Another was John T. Stuart, a brilliant lawyer, several times a
member of Congress, and one of the most lovable of men.

"Another one was David B. Campbell, then the prosecuting attorney and
afterwards a prominent lawyer and citizen of Springfield.

"Another was Edward D. Baker, who was afterwards a United State
Senator from Oregon; a famous orator who immortalized himself by
his marvellous oration over Senator Broderick.

"Another was James A. McDougall, a brilliant Irishman, afterwards a
United States Senator from the State of California.

"And Abraham Lincoln, who has passed beyond the domain of human
praise into the pantheon of universal history.

"I might add that one of those boys afterwards became the Vice-President
of the United States; and the other is your speaker.

"Speaking to any audience in America, I might say in the world,
I doubt if such an incident could be truthfully related of any
other gathering."


It is rarely the case that a Court is called upon to decide questions
of a purely theological character.  Of necessity, however--property
interests being involved,--controversies, measurably of a religious
character, sometimes arise for judicial determination.

The case to be mentioned is probably the only one where "baptism"--
the true mode and manner thereof--has ever come squarely before an
American judge.  A man under sentence of death for murder was
awaiting execution in the jail of one of the counties in
northern Kentucky.  Under the ministrations of the pastor of the
Baptist Church, the prisoner at length made "the good confession" and
desired to be baptized.  To this end, the faithful pastor applied to
the circuit judge before whom the prisoner had been tried, for
permission to have the rite observed in the Kentucky River near
by.  The judge--more deeply versed in "Blackstone" and "Ben Monroe"
than in theological lore--declined to have the prisoner removed
from the jail, but gave permission to have him baptized in the
cell.  The physical impossibility of the observance of the solemn rite
in the prisoner's cell was at once explained.  "Certainly," said
the judge in reply, "I know there is no room in there to baptize
him that way; but take a bowl of water and sprinkle him right where
he is confined."  "But," earnestly interposed the man of the sacred
office, "our church does not recognize sprinkling as valid baptism.
We hold _immersion_ to be the only Scriptural method."  "Is it
possible?" exclaimed the judge, greatly surprised.  "Well, this
Court decides that sprinkling _is_ valid baptism; and I tell you
once for all, that that infernal scoundrel will be sprinkled, _or he
will be hung without being baptized at all!"_

Inasmuch as this decision has never been _overruled_ by a higher
court, it stands as the only judicial determination of the
long-controverted question.


Mr. Clark was the leader of the Metamora Bar when I located there--
_and so continued._  My first case, and the compliment of somewhat
doubtful significance bestowed upon its termination, came about in
this wise.  I was retained for the plaintiff before Squire Fairchild
in a suit involving the ownership of a calf of the alleged value
of seven dollars.  It being my first case, and having the aforementioned
leader as my professional antagonist--and what was of far greater
consequence, a contingent fee of two dollars and a half trembling in
the balance--it may well be supposed that no effort was spared upon
my part.  I won the case, of course--_what lawyer ever told about a
case that he had not won?_

The same evening a little group in the village store were discussing
the merits of the case, and comparing the forensic effort of the
new lawyer with that of the old-time leader already mentioned.  At
length one Tobias Wilson, as he slid down from his accustomed perch
upon the counter, significantly observed, "Men, you may say what
you please, but for my part, I had ruther hear Stevenson speak
_two_ minutes _than to hear old Clark all day!"_


Mr. Clark--whose early advantages had been none of the best--was
once counsel for the proponent in a closely contested will case.
The testator, passing by the next of kin, had left his entire estate
to a personal friend, a man not of his own blood.

In attempting to impress upon the jury the reasonableness of
this disposition, Clark said:  "This, gentlemen of the jury, is
another striking illustration of the power of human friendship.
All history--sacred and profane--is full of instances of strong
personal attachments.  Who can ever forget the undying affection
of David and Jonathan, of Damon and Pythias, _of Scylla and


Judge Baldwin has left of record the witty reply of Jo Heyfron, an
Irish lawyer, to a Mississippi judge.  The judge, having rendered a
very ridiculous decision in a cause in which Heyfron was engaged, the
latter slowly arose as if to address the Court.  The judge,
exceedingly pompous and a poor lawyer withal, in imperative tone
said:  "Take your seat, Mr. Heyfron; you have practised at this
bar long enough to know that when this Court renders a decision,
its wisdom can only be called in question in a higher Court."

"If Your Honor plase," replied Jo in deprecatory tone, "far be
it from me to impugn in the slightest degray the wisdom of Your
Honor's decision.  I only designed to rade a few lines from the
book I hold in my hand, in order that Your Honor might parsave _how
profoundly aignorant Sir William Blackstone was upon this subject!"_

It is difficult, at this day, to realize that such scenes could
ever have been enacted in an English Court, as were not infrequent
during the era embracing the celebrated "State Trials."  While one
of these was in progress, and Curran in the midst of his argument,
the judge contemptuously turned his back upon the advocate, and
began fondling a favorite dog at his side.  The argument was at once
suspended.  "Proceed, sir," were the words which at length broke
the stillness that had fallen upon the vast assemblage.  "Ah!"
exclaimed Curran, "I was only waiting for Your Lordship _to conclude
your consultation with your learned associate!"_


Possibly the most solemn book in the world, not excepting Burton's
"Anatomy of Melancholy," or even "Fearne on Contingent Remainders,"
is an English publication of a half-century or so ago, entitled
"Jokes about Great Lawyers."

Of several hundred alleged jokes, two or three will bear

"My Lord," began a somewhat pompous barrister, "it is written
the book of nature ----"  "Be kind enough," interposed Lord
Ellenborough, "to give me the _page_ from which you quote."

To the opening remark of an equally pompous barrister:

"My Lord, the unfortunate client for whom I appear ----"  "Proceed
sir, proceed," hastily observed the judge, _"so far the court is
with you!"_

Ellenborough, when at the bar, after protracting his argument to
the hour of adjournment, said that he would conclude when it should
suit His Lordship's _pleasure_ to hear him.

The immediate reply was:  "The Court will hear you, sir, to-morrow;
but as to the pleasure, _that_ had long been out of the question."


Gibbon has somewhere said, that one of the liveliest pleasures
which the pride of man can enjoy is to reappear in a more splendid
condition among those who have known him in his obscurity.

A case in point is a lawyer of prominence in one of the Western
States, who soon after his appointment to a seat in the Cabinet
revisited his early home.  Meeting an acquaintance upon his arrival
at the railway station, the visitor, with emotions akin to those
described by Gibbon, ventured to inquire what his old neighbors
said when they heard of him being appointed to a place in the

The unexpected reply was:  "Oh, they didn't say nothin'; _they
just laughed!"_


The late Colonel Lynch was for many years the recognized wit of
the Logan County Bar.  His repeated efforts, upon a time, to collect
a judgment against a somewhat slippery debtor, were unavailing;
the claim of the wife of the debtor, to the property attached,
in each instance proving successful.  Immeasurably disgusted at
the "unsatisfied" return of the third writ, the Colonel indignantly
exclaimed:  "Yes, and I suppose if he should get religion, he would
hold _that, too,_ in his wife's name!"


The stinging retort of the Irish advocate Curran is recalled.
At the close of his celebrated encounter with one of the most
overbearing of English judges, the latter insultingly remarked
to the somewhat diminutive advocate:  "I could put you in my pocket,
sir."  To which, with the quickness of a lightning flash, Curran
retorted:  "If you did, Your Lordship would have more law in
your pocket _than you ever had in your head!"_

Fiercely indignant, the judge replied:  "Another word, and I
will commit you, sir."  To which Curran fearlessly retorted:  "Do,
and it will be the best thing Your Lordship _has committed this


About every courthouse in the "Blue Grass" still linger traditions
of the late Thomas F. Marshall.  For him Nature did well her part.
He was a genius if one ever walked this earth.  Tall, erect,
handsome, of commanding presence, and with intellectual endowment such
as is rarely vouchsafed to man, no place seemed beyond his reach.
Having in addition the prestige of family, that counted for much, and
being the possessor of inherited wealth, it indeed seemed that
to one man "fortune had come with both of her hands full."  The
successor of Clay and Crittenden as Representative for the Ashland
District, a peerless orator upon the hustings, at the bar, and
in the Great Hall, his life went out in sorrow and disappointment.

  "Of all sad words of tongue or pen
  The saddest are these, 'It might have been!'"

His eulogy upon the gifted and lamented Menifee, the tribute of
genius to genius, belongs to the realm of the loftiest eloquence, and
seldom have words of deeper pathos been written than his own obituary
--"Poor Tom's a-cold"--by George D. Prentice.

As to why that which seemed so full of promise "turned to ashes
upon the lips," the following will explain.  Meeting his kinsman, the
Rev. Dr. Breckenridge, he said:  "Bob, when you and I graduated,
you took to the pulpit and I to the bottle, and _I have stuck to
my text a good deal closer than you have to yours!"_

Not inaptly has hell been described as "disqualification in the
face of opportunity."

Bearing in mind Marshall's invariable habit of _not_ paying his
debts, the point of the closing remark of the judge in the incident
to be related will appear.  Marshall was engaged in the defence of
a man charged with murder in a county some distance from his own
home.  Failing repeatedly in his attempt to introduce certain
testimony excluded by the Court, he at length exclaimed:

"It was upon just such rulings as that that Jesus Christ was

"Mr. Clerk, enter up a fine of ten dollars against Mr. Marshall
for contempt of court," was the prompt response of the judge.

"Well," said Marshall, "this is the first time in a Christian
country I have ever heard of a _man being fined for abusing Pontius

"Mr. Clerk," said the judge, with scarcely suppressed indignation,
"enter up a fine of twenty-five dollars against Mr. Marshall for
contempt of court, and the further order that he be imprisoned
in the common jail of the county until the fine and costs are paid."

The death-like stillness that fell upon the assemblage was at length
broken by Mr. Marshall arising and gravely addressing the Court.

"If Your Honor please, I am engaged in the trial of an important
case, one where human life may depend upon my efforts.  I have just
been fined twenty-five dollars and ordered to be imprisoned until the
fine is paid.  Upon a careful examination of my pockets, I find
that I have not that amount _nor any other amount_ about my person.
I am more than one hundred miles from home and among strangers.
In looking over this audience, I find but one familiar face, that of
Your Honor.  I am therefore constrained to request Your Honor,
as an old and cherished friend, _to lend me_ the amount necessary
to discharge this fine."

Instantly the judge exclaimed:  "Remit that fine, Mr. Clerk;
_the State is more able to lose it than I am."_


Near two-thirds of a century ago, one of the best-known lawyers in
Illinois was Justin Butterfield.  He was one of the most eloquent of
the gifted Whig leaders of the State when the list included such
names as Lincoln, Stuart, Hardin, Browning, Baker, and Linder.  He
was the earnest champion of General Zachary Taylor for the Presidency
in 1848, and his party devotion was rewarded by appointment to the
commissionership of the General Land Office.  The only appointment
for which Mr. Lincoln was ever an applicant was that given to
Butterfield soon after the inauguration of President Taylor.

Of few lawyers have brighter things ever been told than of
Justin Butterfield.  During the fierce anti-Mormon excitement--
which resulted in the destruction of the Nauvoo Temple and the
expulsion of the Mormons from the State--the "Prophet," Joseph
Smith, was placed upon trial for an alleged felony.  The Hon.
Nathaniel Pope was the presiding judge, and Butterfield counsel
for Smith.  A large audience, including many elegantly dressed
ladies, was in attendance.

When he arose to address the Court, Butterfield with great dignity

"I am profoundly impressed with the solemnity of the situation and
the awful responsibility resting upon me.  I stand in the presence
of his Holiness the Pope, surrounded by angels, _to speak in defence
of the Lord's anointed Prophet!"_

While in active practice, Butterfield was upon one occasion opposing
counsel to the Hon. David A. Smith in the Supreme Court of the
State.  The latter had concluded his argument and with head resting
upon the table in front, had fallen asleep while Butterfield was
speaking.  A gleam of sunlight which had found its way through the
window opposite, had fallen upon the very bald head of Smith,
causing it to shine with unwonted brilliancy.  Suddenly pausing
and with arm extended toward his sleeping antagonist, Butterfield
solemnly observed:

"The light shineth upon the darkness _and the darkness comprehendeth
it not!"_

As the Old State Bank was about to expire by reason of limitation,
the General Assembly passed a bill extending its corporate life
fifteen years.  In litigation in which Butterfield was counsel,
the legal effect of the Act mentioned being involved, the opposing
counsel insisted that the legal effect of said Act was the creation
of a _new_ bank.  Butterfield in reply insisted that "a new bank
had not been created, but simply the life of the old one prolonged.
A case in point, your Honor, precisely 'on all-fours' with this,
is the well-authenticated one of the good Hezekiah when the Lord
lengthened out his life fifteen years for meritorious conduct.
Now, sir, did he thereby make a _new_ Hezekiah, _or did he leave
him just the same old Hezekiah?"_


Soldier, lawyer, and wit was Colonel Phil Lee of Kentucky.  When
it is borne in mind that he was of exceedingly small stature the
following incident--one he often related--will be appreciated.

Immediately upon attaining his majority he was a candidate for the
Legislature.  On election day he was quietly seated on a barrel in
the room where the election for his precinct was being conducted, when
an old Deacon from the Tan Bark settlement came in to vote.  His
choice for the State officers and for Sheriff was called out after
some little parleying as to who were the _best men,_ and the voter
was about to retire, when one of the judges said,

"Deacon, ain't you going to vote for a candidate for the

"Yas, of course, I like to forgot all about that; who is running
for the Legislature?"

At which Phil, hopping down from the barrel, said, "Deacon, I am
a candidate."

"Who, _you?"_ inquired the Deacon--with half contemptuous gaze
at the diminutive-looking aspirant; then turning to the judge he
said, _"Just put me down for the other fellow!"_

Admitted to the bar at Shepherdsville in his native county of
Bullitt, when barely of age, his first appearance was as attorney for
the plaintiff in a breach-of-promise case of much local celebrity.
His speech held the jury and by-standers literally spellbound, and
it was confidently asserted that the classic banks of Salt River
will probably never witness such flights of eloquence again.  At
its close Phil was warmly congratulated by an old Squire from
the "Rolling Fork."

"Phil, that was a mighty fine speech, a mighty fine speech, Phil, now
mind, I tell you.  That speech reminded me of Henry Clay."

At the first mention of _that_ name, the Squire was promptly invited
out to take a drink.  The first round of hospitality happily
concluded, Phil was in readiness for any additional observations
from the Squire.

"Yes, Phil, when you kinder rared back and throwed your right hand
straight up, thinks I, Henry Clay, Henry Clay!"

Whereupon the Squire was without unnecessary delay invited to take
another drink.  This accomplished, the Squire still held the floor.

"Yes, Phil, yes, Phil, todes the last when you made that big swoop
with both arms and 'peared like you was gwyen right up to the
rafters, thinks I, Shore 'nough, Henry Clay come back from his

As flesh and blood could not stand everything, the old Squire
was promptly invited to take another drink.  Number three being
property placed to his credit, the Squire continued:

"Yes, Phil, you peared to me to be Henry Clay right over again
_with jist one leetle difference."_

At this Mr. Lee, curious to know what could be the _one_ possible little
difference, when there were so many points of resemblance between two
such orators as himself and Henry Clay, ventured to inquire.  "I
think," said the Squire, "this, Phil,--_you peared to kinder lack his

And now comes the tragic ending of a brilliant career.  Lee, while
Commonwealth's attorney, was in the last stages of that dread
disease, consumption.  A murder case was on trial in which he felt
a deep interest.  The case was one of unusual atrocity, and the
accused--a man of some local prominence--had been exceedingly
defiant towards the wan and emaciated prosecuting attorney from
its beginning.  With much difficulty Colonel Lee succeeded in
getting to the court-room in order to make the closing speech to
the jury.  Utterly exhausted,--after depicting the horrible crime in
all its enormity and demanding the extreme penalty of the law upon
its perpetrator,--at its close, in tones that touched the hearts
of all who heard him, he exclaimed:

"Gentlemen of the jury, I have prosecuted the pleas of this
Commonwealth until the blood has dried up in my veins, and the
flesh has perished from my bones!"

These were his _last_ words--and his life went out that same night
just as the clock struck twelve.  At the self-same hour the steps of
the jury were heard slowly ascending to the court-room which had
witnessed his last effort--their verdict, _"Guilty, the penalty,



The McLean County (Illinois) "Home-Coming" of June 15, 1907, was
an event of deep significance to all Central Illinois.  On that
occasion I delivered the welcoming address, as follows:

"These rare days in July mark an memorable epoch in the history of
this good county.  The authoritative proclamation has gone forth
that her house has been put in order, that the latch-string is out
--all things in readiness--and that McLean County would welcome
the return of all her children who have in days past gone out from
her borders.

"In the same joyous and generous spirit in which the welcome was
extended, it has been heeded, and from near and far, from the land
of flowers and of frosts, from the valley of the Osage, the Colorado,
and the Platte, from the golden shores of California, and 'where
rolls the Oregon'--sons and daughters of this grand old county have
gladly turned their footsteps homeward.

  "'When they heart has grown weary and thy foot has grown sore,
  Remember the pathway that leads to our door.'

"As in the ancient days all roads led to Rome, so in this year
of grace, and in this glorious month of June, all roads lead back to
the old home; to the hearthstones around which cling the tender
memories of childhood, and of loved ones gone--to the little mounds
where sleep the ashes of ancestral dead.

"The 'Home-coming' to which you have been invited will leave its
lasting impress upon all your hearts.  The kindly words that
have been spoken, the cordial grasp of the hand, the unbidden tear,
the hospitality extended, have all given assurance that you are
welcome.  Here, for the time, let dull care and the perplexities
that environ this mortal life be laid aside, let whatever would in
the slightest mar the delight of this joyous occasion be wholly
forgotten; so that in the distant future, to those who return and to
those who stay, the recollection of these days will be one of
unalloyed pleasure; and so that, when in the years to come we tell
over to our children of the return to the old home, this reunion
will live in our memories as one that, like the old sun-dial,
'marked only the hours which shine.'

"No place so fitting for this home-coming could have been selected
as this beautiful park, where the springing grass, transparent
lake, and magnificent grove--'God's first temple'--seem all to join
in welcoming your return.  How, from a mere hamlet, a splendid city
has sprung into being during the years of your absence!  No longer
a frontier village, off the great highway of travel, with the mail
reaching it semi-weekly by stage-coach or upon horseback,--as our
fathers and possibly some who now hear me may have known it,--it
is now 'no mean city.'  Its past is an inspiration; its future
bright with promise.  It is in very truth a delightful dwelling-place
for mortals, and possibly not an unfit abiding-place for saints.
Whoever has walked these streets, known kinship with this people, called
this his home--wherever upon this old earth he may since have
wandered--has in his better moments felt an unconquerable yearning
that no distance or lapse of time could dispel, to retrace his
footsteps and stand once more within the sacred precincts of his
early home.  Truly has it been said:  'No man can ever get wholly
away from his ancestors.'  Once a Bloomingtonian, and no art of
the enchanter can dissolve the spell.  'Once in grace, always in
grace,' whatever else may betide!  Eulogy is exhausted when I
say that this city is worthy to be the seat of justice of the grand
old county of which it is a part.

"Upon occasion such as this, the spirit of the past comes over
us with its mystic power.  The years roll back, and splendid farms,
stately homes, magnificent churches, and the marvellous appliances
of modern life are for the moment lost to view.  The blooming
prairie, the log cabin nestling near the border-line of grove or
forest, the old water-mill, the cross-roads store, the flintlock
rifle, the mould-board plough, the dinner-horn,--with notes sweeter
than lute or harp ever knew,--are once more in visible presence.
At such an hour little stretch of the imagination is needed to
recall from the shadows forms long since vanished.  And what
time more fitting can ever come in which to speak of those who have
gone before,--of the early settlers of this good county?

"It was from the beginning the fit abode for men and women of God's
highest type--and such, indeed, were the pioneers.  Their early
struggles, their sacrifices, all they suffered and endured, can
never be fully disclosed.  But to them this was truly 'the promised
land'--a land they might not only view, but possess.  From New
England, Ohio, the 'Keystone,' and the 'Empire' State, from the
beautiful valley of the Shenandoah and the Commonwealths lying
westward and to the south, came the men and women whose early homes
were near the banks of the little streams and nestled in the shades
of the majestic groves.  Here they suffered the hardships and
endured the privations that only the frontiersman might know.  Here
beneath humble roofs, their children were born and reared, and here
from hearts that knew no guile ascended the incense of thanksgiving
and praise.  The early settlers, the pioneers, the men who laid
the foundations of what our eyes now behold, builded wisely and
well.  Their descendants to-day are in large measure the beneficiaries
of all that they so wisely planned, so patiently endured.  These
names and something of what they achieved will go down in our annals
to the after times.  Peace to their ashes; to their memory all
honor!  They were the advance guard--The builders--and faithfully and
well they served their race and time.  Upon nobler men and women
the sun in all his course hath nowhere looked down.

"And where upon God's footstool can domain more magnificent than
this good county be found; one better adapted to the habitation of
civilized man?  The untrodden prairies of three-quarters of a
century ago, as if touched by the wand of magic, have become splendid
farms.  And groves more beautiful the eye of man hath not seen.

"Containing a population of less than two thousand at the time
of its organization, there are more than seventy thousand souls
within the bounds of this good county to-day.  The log cabin has
given way to the comfortable home.  The value of farm lands and
their products have increased beyond human forecast or dream.
As shown by the last Governmental report, McLean County contains
four thousand eight hundred and seventy-three farms, aggregating
seven hundred thirty-seven thousand five hundred and seventy-eight
acres.  The corn product for the year 1899 exceeded fifteen millions
of bushels, being near one-twentieth of that of the entire State.
In the value of its agricultural products it is third upon the list
of counties in the United States.

"The life of the farmer is no longer one of drudgery and isolation.
Modern conveniences and appliances have in large measure supplanted
the hard labor of human hands, lessened the hours of daily toil,
and brought the occupant of the farm into closer touch with the
outer world.  More than all this, our schoolhouses, universities,
churches, and institutions for the relief of the unfortunate and
dependent, all bear witness to the glad fact that in our material
development the claims of education, of religion, of charity, have
not been forgotten.  It is our glory, that in all that tends to human
progress, in all that ministers to human distress, in whatever appeals
to and develops what is best in man, or brings contentment and happiness
to the home--in a word, in the grand march of civilization--McLean
County moves in the van.

"Possibly no occasion more fitting can arise in which briefly to
speak of the organization of McLean County, and something of
important events of its history.  At the session of the Legislature
at Vandalia in the winter of 1830-31, a petition--borne to the
State capital by Thomas Orendorff and James Latta--was duly presented,
praying for the organization of a new county to be taken from
Tazewell and Vermilion.  The territory embraced in the proposed
county included the present limits of McLean and large portions of
neighboring counties organized at a later day.  In accordance with
the petition, a bill was passed, and its approval by the Governor on
the twenty-fifth day of December, 1830, marks the beginning of the
history of this good county.

"The name of 'McLean' was adopted upon the motion of the Hon.
William Lee D. Ewing, some of whose kindred have for many years
been residents of this city.  Mr. Ewing had been the close friend of
the man whose name he thus honored, and was himself in later years
a distinguished Senator in Congress.

"By the terms of the bill mentioned, the seat of justice of said
county was to be 'called and known by the name of Bloomington.'
It was further provided that until otherwise ordered the courts of
said county should be held at the house of James Allen.  The first
term of the Circuit Court was held in April, 1831, at the place
indicated, the historic 'Stipp House,' but recently standing, a
pathetic reminder of by-gone days.  The presiding judge of that
court was the Hon. Samuel D. Lockwood, of Springfield--an able and
eminent jurist of spotless record.  By legislative enactment, five
times since its organization, valuable portions of McLean--aggregating
nearly four-sevenths of its original territory--have been carved
in the formation of the counties of Logan, Livingston, Piatt,
De Witt, and Woodford.  Notwithstanding all this, McLean County yet
remains--and by constitutional inhibition and the wisdom of our
people will for all time remain--the largest county in the State.

"A word now of the man whose name was upon every invitation to this
home-coming, in honor of whom this county was named, John McLean, one
of the ablest and most distinguished of the first generation of
public men in Illinois.  Born in North Carolina in 1791, his early
years were spent in Kentucky.  In the last-named State he studied law
and was admitted to the Bar.  He removed to Illinois in 1815 and
located in Shawneetown upon the Ohio River for the practice of his
profession.  The county of Gallatin, his future home, was then one
of the most populous in the Illinois Territory.  In fact, at the
time mentioned, and for some years after the organization of the
State, there were few important settlements one hundred miles north
of the Ohio River.

"In the largest degree Mr. McLean was gifted with the qualities
essential to popular leadership in the new State.  He was present at
all public assemblages whether convened for business or pastime,
and a leading spirit in all the amusements and sports of the hour.
But 'men are as the time is.'  At all events, if the testimony
of his contemporaries is to be taken, his popularity knew no bounds.
The late General McClernand, his fellow-townsman, said of Mr.

"'His personality interested and impressed me.  The image of it
still lingers in my memory.  Physically, he was well developed,
tall, strong, and stately.  Socially, he was affable and genial,
and his conversation sparkled with wit and humor.'

"The following words of another contemporary, Governor Reynolds,
are of interest:

"'Mr. McLean was a man of gigantic mind, of noble and manly form, and
of lofty, dignified bearing.  His personality was large, and formed
on that natural excellence which at all times attracted the attention
and admiration of all beholders.  The vigor and compass of his
intellect was exceedingly great, and his eloquence flowed in
torrents, deep, strong, and almost irresistible.'

"At the election immediately succeeding the adoption of the
Constitution under which Illinois was admitted into the Union, Mr.
McLean was chosen the Representative in Congress.  Soon thereafter,
he presented to the House of Representatives the State Constitution
then recently adopted at Kaskaskia; and upon its formal acceptance
by that body, Mr. McLean was duly admitted to his seat as the first
Representative from Illinois in the Congress of the United States.
He was defeated for re-election by the Hon. Daniel P. Cook, one of
the most gifted men Illinois has known at any period of her history.

"Rarely have men of greater eloquence than Cook and McLean been
antagonists in debate either upon the hustings or in the halls
of legislation.  With the people of the entire State for an audience,
the exciting issues of that eventful period were argued with an
eloquence seldom heard in forensic discussion.  In very truth, each
was the worthy antagonist of the other.  It is not too much to say
that, with the single exception of the masterful intellectual combat
more than a third of a century later between Lincoln and
Douglas, Illinois has been the theatre of no greater debate.

"Upon his retirement from Congress, Mr. McLean was elected to
the Lower House of the Illinois Legislature and subsequently chosen
Speaker of that body.  The valuable service he there rendered is
an important part of the early history of the State.  He resigned the
speakership in order the more effectually to lead the opposition
to a bill chartering a State bank.  His predictions as to the evils
to the state, of which the proposed legislation would be the sure
forerunner, were more than verified by subsequent events.  More
than a decade had passed before the people were relieved of the
financial ills which John McLean ineffectually sought to avert.
No other evidence of his statesmanship is needed than his masterly
speech in opposition to the ill-timed legislation I have indicated.

"Apart from the fact that his name is continually upon our lips,
the career of Mr. McLean is well calculated to excite our profound
interest.  During the fifteen years of his residence in Illinois, he
held the high position of Representative in Congress, Speaker of
the popular branch of the State Legislature, and was twice elected
to the Senate of the United States.  At his last election he received
every vote of the joint session of the General Assembly--an honor of
which few even of the most eminent of our statesmen have been
the recipients.

"His personal integrity was beyond question, and it may truly be
said of him that he ably and faithfully discharged every public
duty.  He died at the early age of thirty-nine, the period when,
to most public men, a career of usefulness and distinction has
scarcely begun.  Upon the occasion of the announcement of his death
to the Senate his colleague, Senator Kane, paid an eloquent tribute
to his lofty character, his ability, and his worth, and deplored
the loss his State had sustained in his early death.

"He lies buried in the State that had so signally honored him, near
the beautiful river upon whose banks he found a home when Illinois
was yet a wilderness.  Such, in brief, was the man McLean, whose
honored name this good county will hand down to the after times.
No higher tribute need be paid to his memory than to say, his name
was worthy of this magnificent domain to which it was given.

"In no part of this broad land has there been more prompt response
than in this to the authoritative call to arms.  In the largest
measure McLean County has met every requirement that patriotism
could demand.  Full and to overflowing has been her contribution
of means and men.

"In almost the last struggle with the savage foe, as he burned his
wigwam and disappeared before the inexorable advance of civilized men;
in the War with Mexico, by which States were added to our national
domain; in that of the great Rebellion, where the life of the nation
was at stake, and in our recent conflict with Spain--four times
during a history that spans but a single life, McLean County has
sent her full quota of soldiers to the field.  Few survive of the
gallant band who stood with Bissell and Hardin at Buena Vista,
or followed Shields and Baker through the burning sands from the
Gulf to the City of Mexico.  And at each successive reunion of
comrades in the great civil strife, there are fewer, and yet fewer,
responses to the solemn roll-call.

  "'On Fame's eternal camping-ground,
  Their silent tents are spread.'

"And what a record is that of this glorious county during the
eventful years of '61-'65!  With a population of but forty per cent
of that of to-day, more than four thousand of her brave sons marched
gallantly to the front.  They gathered from farm, from shop,
from mart and hall--to die, if need be, that their country might
live.  On many fields now historic, where brave men struggled
and died, soldiers from this grand county were steadily in line.
Along every pathway of danger and of glory they were to be found.
In every grade of rank were heroes as knightly as ever fought
beneath a plume.  Even to name the heroes that old McLean equipped
for the great conflict would be but to call over her muster rolls of
officers and men.

"The chords of memory are touched as the vision of the Old Courthouse
rises before us.  Its walls were the silent witnesses of events
that would make resplendent the pages of history.  Here assembled lawyers,
orators, statesmen, whose names have been given to the ages.  Here,
at a critical period in our history the great masters of debate
discussed vital questions of state--questions that took hold of
the life of the republic.  Here, at times, debate touched the
springs of political power.  Here in the high place of authority
sat one destined later to wear the ermine of the greatest court
known to men.  During his membership of that court in the eventful
years immediately following the great conflict, questions novel
and far-reaching pressed for determination; questions no less
important than those which had in the infancy of the republic
exhausted the learning of Marshall and its associates.  It is
our pride that our townsman, David Davis, was among the ablest
of the great court, by whose adjudication renewed vigor was given to
the Constitution, and enduring safeguards established for national
life and individual liberty.

"To the Old Courthouse in the early days came the talented and
genial James A. McDougall, then just upon the threshold of a brilliant
career, which culminated in his election as a Senator from California;
also John T. Stuart, the able lawyer and gentleman of the old
school.  He was a Representative in Congress more than two-thirds of
a century ago, when his district embraced all Central and Northern
Illinois--extending from a line fifty miles south of Springfield to
Chicago and Galena.  In Congress he was the political associate
and friend of Webster, of Crittenden, and of Clay.  Many years ago,
upon the occasion of Mr. Stuart's last visit to Bloomington, he
told me, as we stood by the old 'Stipp' home, that he there, in
1831, witnessed the beginning of the judicial history of McLean
County, when Judge Lockwood opened its first court.  With deep
emotion he added that he was probably the last survivor of those
then assembled, and that his own days were almost numbered.  His
words were prophetic, as but a few months elapsed before he,
too, had passed beyond the veil.  There came also Edward D. Baker,
Representative from Illinois and Senator from Oregon.  To him Nature
had been lavish with her gifts.  His eloquence cast a spell about all
who heard him.  As was said of the gifted Prentiss:  'the empyrean
height into which he soared was his home, as the upper air the
eagle's.'  Our language contains few gems of eloquence comparable to
this wondrous eulogy on the lamented Broderick.  His own tragic
death in one of the early battles of the great war cast a gloom over
the nation.

"In his official capacity as prosecuting attorney came also to the
Old Courthouse the youthful Stephen A. Douglas.  A born leader
of men, with a courage and eloquence rarely equalled, he was
well equipped for the hurly-burly of our early political conflicts.
Save only in his last great contest, he was a stranger to defeat.
Public Prosecutor, Member of the Legislature, and at the age of
twenty-eight Judge of the Supreme Court of the State; later a
Representative, and at the age of thirty-three a Senator in Congress.
Amid storms of passion such as, please God, we may not see again,
he there held high debate with Seward, Chase, and Sumner; and
measured swords with Tombs, Benjamin, and Jefferson Davis upon
vital issues which, transferred later from forum and from Senate, were
to find bloody arbitrament by arms.  Beginning near the spot where
we have to-day assembled, the career of Douglas was indeed marvellous.
Defeated for the great office which had been the goal of his
ambition; amid the war-clouds gathering over the nation, and the
yet darker shadows falling about his couch, he aroused himself
to the last supreme effort, and in words that touched millions of
responsive chords, adjured all who had followed his political
fortunes to know only their country in its hour of peril.  With
his pathetic words yet lingering, and 'before manhood's morning
touched its noon,' Douglas passed to the great beyond.

"Out of the shadowy past another form is evoked, familiar once
to some who hear me now.  Another name, greater than any yet spoken,
is upon our lips.  Of Abraham Lincoln the words of the great orator,
Bossuet, when he pronounced his matchless elegy upon the Prince of
Conde, might truly be spoken:

"'At the moment I open my lips to celebrate the immortal glory
of the Prince of Conde, I find myself equally overwhelmed by the
greatness of the theme and the needlessness of the task.  What part
of the habitable globe has not heard of the wonders of his life?
Everywhere they are rehearsed.  His own countrymen, in extolling
them, can give no information even to the stranger.'

"Of Lincoln no words can be uttered or withheld that could add
to or detract from his imperishable fame.  His name is the
common heritage of all people and all times.

"When in the loom of time have such words been heard above the din
of fierce conflict as his sublime utterances but a brief time before
his tragic death?

"'With malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness
in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to
finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation's wounds; to care
for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and
his orphan--to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and
lasting peace among ourselves, and with all nations.'

"The men who knew Abraham Lincoln, who saw him face to face, who
met him upon our streets, and heard his voice in our public
assemblages have, with few exceptions, passed to the grave.  Another
generation is upon the busy stage.  The book has forever closed
upon the dread pageant of civil strife.  Sectional animosities,
thank God, belong now only to the past.  The mantle of peace is
over our entire land, and prosperity within all our borders.

  "'Till the war-drum throbs no longer,
  And the battle-flags are furled
  In the parliament of man,
  The federation of the world.'

"Through the instrumentality in no small measure of the man personally
known to some who hear me, the man McLean County delighted to honor,
no less as a private citizen than as President, this Government,
untouched by the finger of time, has descended to us.  Let it never
be forgotten that the responsibility of its preservation and
transmission will rest upon the successive generations of his
countrymen, as they shall come and go.

"Truly it has been said:  'To-day is the pupil of yesterday,'
and also 'History is the great teacher of human nature by means of
object-lessons drawn from the whole recorded life of human nature.'
There is, then, no dead past.  Every event is in a measure significant.
The annals of the ambitions, the crimes, the miseries, the wrongs,
the struggles, the achievements of men in the long past are fraught
with lessons of deep import to all succeeding generations.  Each
age is the heir to that which preceded.  We make progress in
proportion as we wisely ponder significant events.

"McLean County had its historical beginning as a dependent but
distinct political organization on the joyous Christmas Day of
1830.  Stretching backward from that date, its history is bound up
solely in that of Illinois, under its various organizations and
names.  A brief time upon occasion such as this given to a hurried
review of the masterful epochs in the history of the great State
of which our own county is so important a part, cannot be wholly

"Bearing in mind that 'that which comes after ever conforms to that
which has gone before,' significant events of the past must be
known, to the end that we intelligently comprehend the present,
and are enabled, even in scant measure, to forecast the future.

"No State of the American union has a history of more intense
interest than our own.  Its early chapters, indeed, savor of the
romantic rather than of the real.  I do not speak of the long-ago time
when Illinois forest and prairie were the house and hunting-ground
of the red men, and his frail bark the only craft known to its
rivers.  That period belongs to the border-land age of tradition
rather than of veritable history.  It is of Illinois under the
domination of civilized men I would speak.

"For near a century preceding the Treaty of Paris in 1763, 'the
Illinois country' was a part of the French domain.  Inseparably
linked with that portion of its history are names that will live
with those of the Cabots and Columbus.  The great navigator in his
lonely search for a new pathway to the Indies was buoyed by a
courage, a yearning for discovery, scarce greater than that which in
the heart of the new continent sustained the later voyagers and
discoverers, Marquette, Joliet, Hennepin, and La Salle.

"America's obligation to France is enduring--for explorers in
the seventeenth century no less than for defenders in that which
immediately followed.  The historic page which tells of the
lofty heroism of Lafayette has for us no deeper interest than that
which records the daring achievements of the early French pathfinders
and voyagers.  Two centuries and a half ago Marquette and
Joliet, bearing the commission of the French Governor of Quebec,
embarked upon their expedition for the discovery of new countries to
the southward.  Animated by the earnest desire of extending the
blessings of religion no less than that of adding to the domain of
their imperial master, they set out upon an expedition which has
become historic.  The bare recital of what befell them would
fill volumes.  Now meeting with the scattered tribes of Indians,
bestowing presents and in turn sharing the hospitality offered;
now speaking words of admonition and of instruction; now gathering
up the crude materials for history; now reverently setting up
the cross in the wilderness; again threading the pathless forests,
or in frail barks sailing unknown waters, they pursued their perilous

"In time, after looking out upon the waters of Lake Michigan,
crossing Lake Winnebago, visiting the ancient villages of the
Kickapoos, 'with joy indescribable,' as Marquette declared, they
for the first time beheld the Mississippi.  In June, 1673, upon
the east bank of the great river, they landed upon the soil of what
is now the State of Illinois.  At the little village they first
visited they received hospitable treatment.  Its inmates are known
in our early history as 'the Illini'--a word signifying _men._
The euphonic termination added by the Frenchmen gives us the
name Illinois.  It is related that, upon the first appearance of
Marquette and Joliet at the door of the principal wigwam of the
village, they were greeted by an aged native with the words:  'The
sun is beautiful, Frenchmen, when you come to visit us; you
shall enter in peace into all our cabins; it is well, my brothers,
you come.'  In the light of the marvellous results of the visit,
the words of the aged chieftain seem prophetic.  We, too, may say it
was well they came.

"The glory of having discovered the upper Mississippi and the valley
which bears its name belongs to Marquette and Joliet.  It was theirs
to add the vast domain under the name 'New France' to the empire
of _le Grand Monarque._  In very truth a princely gift.  But no
history of the great valley and the majestic river would be complete
which failed to tell something of the priest and historian, Hennepin,
and of the knightly adventures of the Chevalier La Salle.

"Much, indeed, that is romantic surrounds the entire career of
La Salle.  Severing his connection with a theological school in
France, his fortunes were early cast in the New World.  From Quebec,
the ancient French capital of this continent, he projected an
expedition which was to add empire to his own country and to cast a
glamour about his own name.  It has been said that his dream was
of a western waterway to the Pacific Ocean.  In 1669, with an outfit
that had cost him his entire fortune, with a small party he ascended
in canoes the St. Lawrence, and a few weeks later was upon the broad
Ontario.  Out of the mists and shadows that enveloped much of
his subsequent career, it were impossible at all times to gather
that which is authentic.  It is enough that, with Hennepin as one of
his fellow-voyagers, he reached the Ohio and in due time navigated
the Illinois, meantime visiting many of the ancient villages.

"But his great achievement--and that with which abides his imperishable
fame--was his perilous descent of the Mississippi from the Falls
of St. Anthony to the Gulf of Mexico.  On the sixth day of April, 1682,
upon the east bank of the lower Mississippi, with due form and
ceremony and amid the solemn chanting of the _Te Deum_ and the
plaudits of his comrades, La Salle took formal possession of the
Louisiana country in the name of his royal master, Louis the
Fourteenth of France.

"For the period of ninety-two years, beginning with the discoveries
of Marquette and Joliet, the Illinois country was a part of the
French possessions.  Sovereignty over the vast domain of which
it was a part was exercised by the French King through his commandant
at Quebec.  But as has been truly said, 'The French sought and
claimed more than they had the ability to hold or possess.  Their line
of domain extended from the St. Lawrence around the Great Lakes and
through the valley of the Mississippi to the Gulf of Mexico, a
distance of over three thousand miles.'  Truly a magnificent domain,
but one destined soon to pass forever from the possession of the
French monarch and his line.

"The hour had struck, and upon the North American continent the
ancient struggle for supremacy between France and her traditional enemy
was to find bloody arbitrament.  Great Britain claimed as a part
of her colonial possessions in the New World the territory bordering
upon the Great Lakes and the rich lands of the Ohio and Mississippi
valleys.  As to the merits of the French and English contention as
to superior right by discovery or conquest, it were idle now to
argue.  Our concern is with the marvellous results of the long-continued
struggle which for all time determined the question of race supremacy
upon this continent.

"Passing rapidly the minor incidents of the varying fortunes of
the stupendous struggle which had been transferred for the time
from the Old World to the New, we reach the hour which was to mark
an epoch in history.  The time, the thirteenth of September, 1759;
the place, the Heights of Abraham at Quebec.  There and then was
fought out one of the pivotal battles of the ages.  It was the
closing act in a great drama.  The question to be determined:
Whether the English-speaking race or its hereditary foe was to
be master of the continent.  It was in reality a struggle for empire
--the magnificent domain stretching from the St. Lawrence to the
Gulf of Mexico.  The incidents of the battle need not now be told.
Never were English or French soldiery led by more knightly captains.
The passing years have not dispelled the romance or dimmed the
glory that gathered about the name of Wolfe and Montcalm.  Dying
at the self-same moment--one amid the victors, the other amid the
vanquished--their names live together in history.

"By the treaty of Paris which followed, France surrendered to
her successful rival all claim to the domain east of the Mississippi
River.  In accordance with the terms of the treaty, Gage, the
commander of the British forces in America, took formal possession
of the recently conquered territory.  Proclamation of this fact
was made to the inhabitants of the Illinois country in 1764, and
a garrison soon thereafter established at Kaskaskia.  Here the rule
of the British was for the time undisputed.  British domination in
the Mississippi Valley was, however, to be of short duration.  Soon
the events were hastening, the forces gathering, which were in turn
to wrest from the crown no small part of the splendid domain won
by Wolfe's brilliant victory at Quebec.

"In this hurried review I reach now an event of transcendent interest
and one far-reaching in its consequences.  While our Revolutionary
War was in progress, and its glorious termination yet but dimly
foreshadowed, General George Rogers Clark planned an expedition
whose successful termination has given his name to the list of
great conquerors.  Bearing the commission of Patrick Henry, Governor
of Virginia, the heroic Clark crossed the Ohio and began his
perilous march.  After enduring untold hardships, the undaunted
leader and his little band reached Kaskaskia.  The British commander
and his garrison were surprised and quickly captured.  The British
flag was lowered, and on the fourth day of July, 1778, the Illinois
country was taken possession of in the name of the Commonwealth
whose Governor had authorized the expedition.

"Five years later occurred an event of mighty significance, and of
far-reaching consequence--one that in very truth marks the genesis
of Illinois history.  I refer to the cession by Virginia of the
vast area stretching to the Mississippi--of which the spot upon
which we are now assembled is a part--to the general Government.
To the deed of cession, by which Illinois became a part of the
United States, as commissioners upon the part of Virginia, were
signed the now historic names of Arthur Lee, James Monroe, and
Thomas Jefferson.

"The next milestone of Illinois upon the pathway to statehood
was what is so well known in our political history as the Ordinance
of 1787.  Not inaptly has it been called 'the second Magna Charta,'
'a pillar of cloud by day and of fire by night,' in the settlement
and government of the Northwestern States.  Two provisions of
the great ordinance possessed a value that cannot be measured by
words:  One, that the States to be formed out of said territory
were to remain forever parts of the United States of America;
the other, that neither slavery nor involuntary servitude should
exist therein, otherwise than for crime whereof the party should
have been duly convicted.

"The value of the great Ordinance to millions who have since found
homes within the limits of the vast area embraced within its
provision cannot be overstated.  Our eyes behold to-day the marvellous
results of the far-seeing statesmanship in which it was conceived.

"Momentous events now followed in rapid succession:  the disastrous
defeat of General St. Clair, first Governor of the Northwest
Territory, near the old Miami village; the appointment of General Wayne,
hero of Stony Point, to the command of the Western army; his crushing
defeat of the Indian foe at the Maumee Rapids, and the treaty of
Greenville, which for the time gave protection to the frontiersmen
against the savage; the attempt of the French minister, Genet,
to create discord in the western country, and in fact to establish
a Government in the Mississippi Valley, independent of that of the
United States; and the threatened conflict with Spain regarding
the free navigation of the Mississippi--all possess an interest to
Illinoisans which time cannot abate.

"All apprehension, however, was for the time removed by the treaty
between our Government and Spain, by which it was provided that
the middle of the Mississippi should be our western border and that
the navigation of the entire river to the Gulf should be free to
all the people of the United States.  Passing over the later
faithless attempt of Spain to abrogate this salient provision of
the treaty, it is enough that the question was forever put at rest
by the purchase by our Government in 1803, for fifteen millions of
dollars, from the great Napoleon, of the entire Louisiana country,
stretching from the Gulf to the domain of Canada--out of which have
been carved sixteen magnificent States, destined to abide and remain
forever sovereign parts of our federal Union.

"And while Spain has sustained crushing and retributive defeat and
her flag has disappeared forever from mainland and island of the
western world, the great river, gathering its tributaries from
northern lake to southern sea, flows unvexed through a mighty realm
that knows no symbol of authority save only our own Stars and

"Illinois was represented for the first time in a legislative
chamber in the general assembly of the Northwest Territory,
which convened in Cincinnati in 1799.  By act of Congress in
May, 1800, a new territorial organization was created, by which
the territory now embraced in the States of Indiana and Illinois
was formed, to be known as 'Indiana Territory,' and the capital
located at Vincennes.  In February, 1809, by act of Congress,
the 'Territory of Illinois' was duly organized, its seat of government
established at Kaskaskia.  Nine years later--December, 1818--with a
population scarcely one-half that of McLean County to-day, it
was duly admitted a State of the federal Union.

"Beginning with Illinois at the coming of Joliet and Marquette
in the seventeenth century, we have rapidly followed its thread of
history for a century and a half, until it became a State of the
American Union.  We have seen it under the rule of the Frenchman, the
Briton, the Virginian, under its various territorial organizations,
until eighty-nine years ago it reached the dignity of statehood.
We have seen its seat of authority at Quebec, at New Orleans, at
Cincinnati, at Vincennes, and finally at Kaskaskia.  We have noted
something of its marvellous development, of its wonderful increase
in population.

"Just one hundred and seven years ago, when by act of Congress
Illinois became part of the Indiana Territory, it contained a
population of less than two thousand white persons, only eight
hundred of whom were of the English-speaking race.  Less than
two decades later, with a population of less then forty thousand, and
an area greater, with a single exception, than any of the original
States, we have witnessed its admission to the Union.  How marvellous
the retrospect at this hour!  And yet, 'the pendulum of history
swings in centuries in the slow but sure progress of the human race
to a higher and nobler civilization.'

"Events of thrilling interest and of scarce less consequence
than those already mentioned followed the admission of the State
into the Union.  In brief summary:  The unsuccessful attempt to
introduce slavery; the fatal duel between Stewart and Bennet and
the trial and execution of the survivor for murder, thereby placing
the ban of judicial condemnation upon the barbarous practice;
the visit of Lafayette to Illinois and his brilliant entertainment
by the Governor and Legislature at the old executive mansion;
the removal of the State capital from the ancient French village
of Kaskaskia to Vandalia, and near two decades later to Springfield;
the memorable contest for Congress between Cook and McLean, each
possessing in large measure the rare gift of eloquence, and both
dying lamented in early manhood; the organization of two
splendid counties that will keep the honored names of Cook and
McLean in the memories of men to the latest posterity; the Black
Hawk War and the final treaty of peace which followed the defeat
and capture of the renowned Sac chief; the riots at Alton and
the assassination of the heroic Lovejoy while defending the right of
free speech and of a free press; the advent of the prophet
Joseph Smith, the rapid growth of the Mormon Church, its power as a
political factor in the State, the building of the million-dollar temple
at Nauvoo, the murder of the Mormon prophet, and the final exodus of
his adherents to the valley of the Wasatch and the Great Salt Lake;
the construction of the Illinois and Michigan Canal, the precursor
of grander material achievements soon to follow; the bravery of
the Illinois troops during the war with Mexico; the wonderful tide
of immigration flowing in from the older States and from Europe;
the invaluable services of Senator Douglas in securing the celebrated
land grant under which the Illinois Central Railroad was
constructed, and Chicago brought into commercial touch with the
River Ohio and the States to the southward; the dawn of the era of
stupendous agricultural development, and of marvellous activity on
all lines and through all channels of trade; the wonderful growth of
Chicago, springing with giant bound, within the span of a single
life, from a mere hamlet to be the second city upon the continent;
the unparalleled railroad construction, giving Illinois a
greater mileage than any one of her sister States; the immense
development of its untold mineral resources, and the advance by
leaps and bounds along all lines of manufacturing; the impetus
given to the higher conception and purpose of human life by the
creation of a splendid system of public schools and universities; the
establishment of institutions and asylums for the considerate care
and relief of the unfortunate and afflicted of our kind; the building
of homes 'for him who hath borne the battle and for his orphan';
the masterful debates between Lincoln and Douglas, the prelude
to events destined to give pause to the world, and to change the
trend of history.  And, to crown all, how, when the nation's life was
in peril, Illinois, true to her covenant under the great Ordinance
that had given her being, gave one illustrious son to the chief
magistracy of his country, another to the captaincy of its armies,
and sent her soldier heroes by myriads along every pathway of danger
and of glory.

"As one standing, alas, 'upon the western slope,' let me adjure
the young men of this magnificent county--my home for more than
half a century--to study thoroughly the history of our own State, and
of the grand republic of which it is a part.  Illinois, in all that
constitutes true grandeur in a people, knows no superior among the
great sisterhood of States.  Her pathway from the beginning has
been luminous with noble achievement.  It is high privilege and high
honor to be a citizen of this grand republic.  It is in very truth
a government of the people, in an important sense a government
standing separate and apart; its foundations the morality, the
intelligence, the patriotism of the people.  Never forget that
citizenship in such a government carries with it tremendous
responsibility, a responsibility that we cannot evade.  Study
thoroughly how our liberties were achieved, and the benefits of
stable government secured by the great compact which for more than
a century, in peace and during the storm and stress of war, has held
States and people in indissoluble union; and how, during the great
civil conflict--the most stupendous the world has known--human
liberty, through baptism of blood, obtained a new and grander
meaning, and the Union established by our fathers was made, as
we humbly trust in God, enduring for all time."


*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Something of Men I Have Known - With Some Papers of a General Nature, Political, Historical, and Retrospective" ***

Doctrine Publishing Corporation provides digitized public domain materials.
Public domain books belong to the public and we are merely their custodians.
This effort is time consuming and expensive, so in order to keep providing
this resource, we have taken steps to prevent abuse by commercial parties,
including placing technical restrictions on automated querying.

We also ask that you:

+ Make non-commercial use of the files We designed Doctrine Publishing
Corporation's ISYS search for use by individuals, and we request that you
use these files for personal, non-commercial purposes.

+ Refrain from automated querying Do not send automated queries of any sort
to Doctrine Publishing's system: If you are conducting research on machine
translation, optical character recognition or other areas where access to a
large amount of text is helpful, please contact us. We encourage the use of
public domain materials for these purposes and may be able to help.

+ Keep it legal -  Whatever your use, remember that you are responsible for
ensuring that what you are doing is legal. Do not assume that just because
we believe a book is in the public domain for users in the United States,
that the work is also in the public domain for users in other countries.
Whether a book is still in copyright varies from country to country, and we
can't offer guidance on whether any specific use of any specific book is
allowed. Please do not assume that a book's appearance in Doctrine Publishing
ISYS search  means it can be used in any manner anywhere in the world.
Copyright infringement liability can be quite severe.

About ISYS® Search Software
Established in 1988, ISYS Search Software is a global supplier of enterprise
search solutions for business and government.  The company's award-winning
software suite offers a broad range of search, navigation and discovery
solutions for desktop search, intranet search, SharePoint search and embedded
search applications.  ISYS has been deployed by thousands of organizations
operating in a variety of industries, including government, legal, law
enforcement, financial services, healthcare and recruitment.