Slike strani
PDF
ePub

CH. X.]

THE EIGHTH CENSUS.

553

1860.

The Prince of Wales, having made a which was taken this year. Total tour through the British Provinces, ar- white population, 27,003,314; free col. rived at Detroit, Sept. 21st; thence he ored, 487,996; slaves, 3,953,proceeded by way of Chicago, St. Louis, | 760. The population of the Cincinnati, and Baltimore, to Washing. free States was, 18,912,454. The poputon, where he arrived on the 3d of lation of the slave States was, 8,090,860, October. He remained for several days making, with the slaves, 12,044,620. as the guest of the President; visited The increase of population in the free Richmond, Philadelphia, and New York, States, during ten years, was 7,446,043. in which latter city especial honor was The increase of population in the slave done to him; he visited also West States was, 2,428,376.

The grand Point, Albany, and Boston; and having total of the population of the United reached Portland, October 20th, he States (including territories) in 1860, embarked for home. The manifesta- was, 31,445,080*. In the new apportions of good feeling towards the heir tionment of Representatives (the numof the English throne were in all re- ber being, by law, 233) the free States spects cordial and freely tendered, and gained six, making their number 149; there is reason to believe that they were and the slave States lost six, reducing fully appreciated by the Queen and their number to 84. people of England.

We may take occasion here, also, to and Territories, and Chinese ; there being B7,329 Ingive the results of the eighth census dians, and 23,140 Chinese ; total, 60,469.

* This includes taxed Indians in the several States

VOL III.-79

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small]

The great political struggle for the presidency – The election in November, 1860 — Abraham Lir.coln and

Hannibal Hamlin chosen president and vice-president of the United States — Excitement and violent de nunciations of the Southern leaders — South Carolina takes the lead in the mad outbreak – Secession ordinance of the Palmetto State - Address, Declaration, etc — Congress meets for the second session – Mr. Buchanan's message

Difficulties of his position - Condemns secession, but thought there was no power of coercion to prevent it - Suggests an explanatory amendment of the Constitution — The House and Senate committees - The Crittenden “ Compromise measures - The "peace propositions” - President's special messages - Peace conference at Washington - Secession convention at Montgomery, Alabama Davis and Stephens at head of new Confederacy - Dishonest course of the South - Charleston harbor, forts, etc - Proceedings of the Charlestonians - Major Anderson -Resignations of members of the Cabinet -- Resignations of Congressmen, speeches, etc — End of the session and result Review of James Buchanan's administration - APPENDIX TO CHAPTER XI. — I. Buchanan's Administration on the Eve of the Rebellion. II. South Carolina's Address to the Slave-holding States. III. South Carolina's Declaration as to Secession.

The several distinguished gentlemen, On the whole, the canvass was conduct named on a preceding page, accepted ed with as much moderation and fairness the nominations for president and vice- as is usual; although, at the South, president, and each party had strong there was no disguise of the hatred to hopes of success. The republicans ex- wards the republicans and their prinpected to carry the North and West ciples, and no hesitation in avowing without difficulty, while the democrats, a settled purpose never to submit although weakened by the divisions in to the government, if placed in Mi their ranks, still believed themselves Lincoln's hands. These bitter de able to defeat Mr. Lincoln. The union nunciations and threatenings were, at party also persuaded themselves that it the time, looked upon as only the ordin was quite possible to secure the election ary effervescence of polit cal excitement, of their candidates. The canvass was but subsequent events showed that the vigorously prosecuted; speeches were Southern disupionists were in earnest made in all directions by Messrs. in their fell designs against the integrity

Douglas, Seward, Lincoln, and and honor of the country.

other prominent men; the The election took place, Tuesday, press entered as usual most warmly November 6th, and by means of the into the contest; and the people were telegraph, was immediately made roused to the consideration of the impor- known. Abraham Lincoln was electtant issues depending on the election. Ied president of the United States, and

1860,

Cu. XI.]

RESULTS OF THE ELECTION.

555

Hannibal Hamlin vice-president, by a ists and mechanics, a nation founded on considerable majority. Mr. Lincoln the absolute supremacy of the white received 1,857,610 votes, and 180 out race and the necessary perpetual slavery of the 183 electoral votes of the free of the black race;—these were among States; Mr. Douglas received 1,365,976 the things talked of every where and votes, but only twelve electoral votes by all; and to accomplish these the (three from New Jersey, nine from Southern leaders now set themselves Missouri); Mr. Breckenridge received resolutely at work. * 847,953 votes, and 72 electoral votes South Carolina took the lead in this from the Southern States ; Mr. Bell mad outbreak against the Union. received 590,631 votes, and thirty-nine Governor Gist, early in November, so electoral votes from Virginia, Kentucky, soon as the presidential election became and Tennessee.

known, recommended the legislature, Such was the result of the contest. then in session, to make immediate preIt was plain to those who had been paration for the crisis, by organizing the watching the progress of events, that militia for active service, calling for the long-existing supremacy of the volunteers, collecting arms and ammuni. South in national affairs had now re- tion, summoning a convention to com. ceived its death-blow; it was plain, plete the secession of the State, etc. also, that they who had been defeated Delegates were elected on the 6th of in the recent presidential election must December; on the 10th, F. W. Pickens now submit to the condition of things under republican rule, or seek to obtain * We may here quote, in this connection, the letter redress in carrying out into action their of that notorious, unscrupulous politician, W. L.

Yancey, dated Montgomery, Alabama, June, 1858 ; it violent and oft-repeated threats was addressed to Mr. J. S. Slaughter:-“Your kind of disunion. The excitement favor of the 15th is received. I hardly agree with

you that a general movement can be made that will was intense, and Southern leaders scru- clear out the Augean stable. If the democracy were pled not to increase it in every way pos- overthrown it would give place to a greater and

hungrier swarm of flies. sible. By some strange hallucination, “The remedy of the South is not in such a process. they seemed to consider it a personal It is in a diligent organization of her true men for

prompt resistance to the next aggression. It must wrong done to them, because the peo

come in the nature of things. No additional party can ple of the United States, acting in the save us : no sectional party can ever do it. But if we way appointed by the Constitution, had could do as our fathers did, organize committees of decided to place the government in the safety all over the cotton States (and it is only in them

that we can hope for any effective movement), we shall hands of Mr. Lincoln and his advisers. fire the southern heart, instruct the southern mind, give They threatened vengeance, and all courage to each other, and at the proper moment, by one

organized, concerted action, we can precipitate the cotton other horrible things, and they soon states into a revolution. The idea has been shadowed began to make it evident what were forth in the South by Mr. Ruffin ; has been taken up their long cherished designs. Secession, of League of United Southerners,' who keeping

and recommended in the Advertiser, under the name a breaking up of the Union, a Southern up their old party relations on all other questions, will Confederacy, a new republic free from hold the southern issue paramount, and will influence

parties, logislatures and statesmen.”— Yancey died, contamination with Northern abolition July 28th, 1863

1860.

1860.

became governor, and zealously urged Union had refused to fulfil their constiforward extreme measures; on the 17th, tutional obligations; that the North the convention assembled at Columbia, hated and reviled slavery; that a man

but as the small pox was prevail. had been elected president whose wbole

ing there, it met at Charleston soul was hostile to slavery; that nethe next day; on the 20th, the ordinance groes, in some states, had been allowed of secession was reported and adopted in even to become citizens; and such like. the following words :—“We, the people Governor Pickens, the same day, issued of the State of South Carolina, in Con- a proclamation, asserting, among other vention assembled, do declare and or- things, “that the State of South Carodain, and it is hereby declared and or- lina had resumed her position among dained, that the ordinance adopted by us the nations of the world as a free, soverin Convention on the 23d day of May, in eign, and independent state;" and the the year of our Lord 1788, whereby the legislature, after the various acts called Constitution of the United States of for by the anomalous condition of afAmerica was ratified, and also all acts fairs, and the need of getting ready to or parts of acts of the General Assembly resist any movements on the part of the of this State ratifying the amendments government to enforce the laws, adto said Constitution, are hereby repeal- journed on the 5th of January, 1861.* ed, and that the Union now subsisting

While South Carolina was thus tak. between South Carolina and other ing the lead in rebellion, aided and enStates under the name of the United couraged by other violent pro-slavery States of America, is hereby dissolved." portions of the South, the national legis

The convention also put forth an lature was just entering upon its mo“ Address to the People of the Slave- mentous work. On Monday, Decemholding States," and a “Declaration of ber 3d, the Thirty-sixth Congress met the Causes which justify the Secession for its second session. The next day of South Carolina from the Federal Mr. Buchanan sent in his mesUnion."*

After a good deal of debate sage, in which he entered into both these papers were adopted, De an elaborate discussion of the state of cember 24th. The address was an at- the country, and made various recom tempt to justify the course which had mendations requiring special attention. been taken, on the ground mainly of He evidently felt himself to be in a very northern aggression, and urged especi- difficult and uncomfortable position. ally upon the neighboring states to All his political life had been marked unite with South Carolina and form “a by partiality for the southern views of great slave-holding confederacy.” The declaration re-affirmed the state rights * The headlong precipitancy and folly of South theory in its most stringent form ; and Carolina were gladly and skilfully used by secession

leaders in other states. Ordinances, similar to that asserted that fifteen of the states in the above quoted, were passed by Mississippi, January

9th, 1861 ; by Alabama and Florida, January 11th; by * For some extracts from these papers, see Appendix Georgia, January 18th · by Louisiana, January 26th II. at the end of the present chapter

and by Texas, February 1st

1860

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

the great questions at issue, and by a selves into as many petty, jarring, and spirit of unmanly subserviency, and hostile republics, each one retiring from so he condemned the North, without the Union without responsibility when. scruple, as the authors of the trouble ever any sudden excitement might imnow existing ;* at the same time he pel them to such a course. By this could hardly venture to stultify him- process a Union might be entirely self by justifying the course of the hot- broken into fragments in a few weeks headed politicians who were inaugu- which cost our forefathers many years rating armed insurrection, and so he of toil, privation, and blood to establish, took occasion to set forth very plainly

It (the Constitution) the folly and impudence of the claim was intended to be perpetual, and not on the part of any state to secede and to be annulled at the pleasure of any break up 'the Union, whenever it saw one of the contracting parties. fit to make the attempt.

To the extent of the delegated Having-strangely enough—declar- powers, the Constitution of the United ed that Mr. Lincoln's election to the States is as much a part of the Constipresidency “does not, of itself, afford tution of each state, and is as binding just cause for dissolving the Union;" upon its people, as though it had been Mr. Buchanan went on to say: "in textually inserted therein. This gov. order to justify secession as a constitu- ernment, therefore, is a great and tional remedy, it must be on the prin- powerful government, invested with all ciple, that the federal government is a the attributes of sovereignty over the mere voluntary association of states, to special subjects to which its authority be dissolved at pleasure by any one of extends. Its framers never intended to the contracting parties. If this be so, implant in its bosom the seeds of its the confederacy is a rope of sand, to be own destruction, nor were they at its penetrated and dissolved by the first creation guilty of the absurdity of proadverse wave of public opinion in any viding for its own dissolution. It was of the states. In this manner our not intended by its framers to be the thirty-three states may resolve them- baseless fabric of a vision, which, at the

touch of the enchanter, would vanish * Mr. Giddings, in his “ History of the Rebellion," p. 449, denounces in no measured terms, “the men- into thin air, but a substantial and dacious effrontery" of Mr. Buchanan in asserting the mighty fabric, capable of resisting the long continued and intemperate interference of the northern people with the question of slavery in the slow decay of time, and of defying the southern states.” On the other hand, Mr. George Lunt, storms of ages.” The right to resist opof Massachusetts, a gentleman of years and experience pression could not of course be denied. in public affairs, published a volume of some 500 pp. to set forth “ The Origin of the Late War, traced from the “It exists independently of all constibeginning of the Constitution to the Revolt of the tutions, and has been exercised at all southern states." (New York, 1866.) Mr. Lunt's views

Under are of the old-fashioned, pro-slavery sort, so that, of periods of the world's history. course, he charges upon the North aggression upon the it old governments have been destroyrights of the South, and justifies the secession leaders

ed, and new ones have taken their in seeking redress by seceding and thus compelling the

place. It is embodied in strong and

North to yield to their demands.

« PrejšnjaNaprej »