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said, meanders in the sugar-fields and plantations of the South, and the people living in their different localities and in the Territories must determine for themselves whether their "middle belt" were best adapted to slavery or free labor. He advocated the eventual annexation of Cuba and Central America. Still going a step further, he laid down a far-reaching principle.

"It is a law of humanity," he said, "a law of civilization, that whenever a man or a race of men show themselves incapable of managing their own affairs, they must consent to be governed by those who are capable of performing the duty. . In accordance with this principle, I assert that the negro race, under all circumstances, at all times, and in all countries, has shown itself incapable of self-government."

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This pro-slavery coquetting, however, availed him nothing, as he felt himself obliged in the same speeches to defend his Freeport doctrine. Having taken his seat in Congress, Senator Brown of Mississippi, toward the close of the short session, catechized him sharply on this point.

"If the territorial legislature refuses to act," he inquired, "will you act? If it pass unfriendly acts, will you pass friendly? If it pass laws hostile to slavery, will you annul them, and substitute laws favoring slavery in their stead?"

There was no evading these direct questions, and Douglas answered frankly:

"I tell you, gentlemen of the South, in all candor, I do not believe a Democratic candidate can ever carry any one Democratic State of the North on the platform that it is the duty of the Federal government to force the people of a Territory to have slavery when they do not want it."

An extended discussion between Northern and Southern Democratic senators followed the colloquy, which showed that the Freeport doctrine had opened up an irreparable schism between the Northern and Southern wings of the Democratic party.

In all the speeches made by Douglas during his Southern tour, he continually referred to Mr. Lincoln as the champion of abolitionism, and to his doctrines as the platform of the abolition or Republican party. The practical effect of this course was to extend and prolong the Illinois senatorial campaign of 1858, to expand it to national breadth, and gradually to merge it in the coming presidential campaign. The effect of this was not only to keep before the public the position of Lincoln as the Republican champion of Illinois, but also gradually to lift him into general recognition as a national leader. Throughout the year 1859 politicians and newspapers came to look upon Lincoln as the one antagonist who could at all times be relied on to answer and refute the Douglas arguments. His propositions were so forcible and direct, his phraseology so apt and fresh, that they held the attention and excited comment. A letter written by him in answer to an invitation to attend a celebration of Jefferson's birthday in Boston, contains some notable passages:

"Soberly, it is now no child's play to save the principles of Jefferson from total overthrow in this nation. One would state with great confidence that he could convince any sane child that the simpler propositions of Euclid are true; but, nevertheless, he would fail, utterly, with one who should deny the definitions and axioms. The principles of Jefferson are the definitions and axioms of free society. And yet they are denied and evaded with no small show of success. One dashingly calls them 'glittering generalities.' Another



And others in'superior races.'

bluntly calls them 'self-evident lies.' sidiously argue that they apply to These expressions, differing in form, are identical in object and effect the supplanting the principles of free government, and restoring those of classification, caste, and legitimacy. They would delight a convocation of crowned heads plotting against the people. They are the vanguard, the miners and sappers of returning despotism. We must repulse them, or they will subjugate us. This is a world of compensation; and he who would be no slave must consent to have no slave. Those who deny freedom to others deserve it not for themselves, and, under a just God, cannot long retain it."

Douglas's quarrel with the Buchanan administration had led many Republicans to hope that they might be able to utilize his name and his theory of popular sovereignty to aid them in their local campaigns. Lincoln knew from his recent experience the peril of this delusive party strategy, and was constant and earnest in his warnings against adopting it. In a little speech after the Chicago municipal election on March 1, 1859, he said:


"If we, the Republicans of this State, had made Judge Douglas our candidate for the Senate of the United States last year, and had elected him, there would to-day be no Republican party in this Union. Let the Republican party of Illinois dally with Judge Douglas, let them fall in behind him and make him their candidate, and they do not absorb him-he absorbs them. They would come out at the end all Douglas men, all claimed by him as having indorsed every one of his doctrines upon the great subject with which the whole nation is engaged at this hour-that the question of negro slavery is simply a question of

dollars and cents; that the Almighty has drawn a line across the continent, on one side of which labor-the cultivation of the soil-must always be performed by slaves. It would be claimed that we, like him, do not care whether slavery is voted up or voted down. Had we made him our candidate and given him a great majority, we should never have heard an end of declarations by him that we had indorsed all these dogmas." To a Kansas friend he wrote on May 14, 1859: "You will probably adopt resolutions in the nature of a platform. I think the only temptation will be to lower the Republican standard in order to gather recruits. In my judgment, such a step would be a serious mistake, and open a gap through which more would pass out than pass in. And this would be the same whether the letting down should be in deference to Douglasism, or to the Southern opposition element; either would surrender the object of the Republican organization-the preventing of the spread and nationalization of slavery. Let a union be attempted on the basis of ignoring the slavery question, and magnifying other questions which the people are just now not caring about, and it will result in gaining no single electoral vote in the South, and losing every one in the North."

To Schuyler Colfax (afterward Vice-President) he said in a letter dated July 6, 1859:

"My main object in such conversation would be to hedge against divisions in the Republican ranks generally, and particularly for the contest of 1860. The point of danger is the temptation in different localities to 'platform' for something which will be popular just there, but which, nevertheless, will be a firebrand elsewhere, and especially in a national convention. As instances: the movement against foreigners in Massa



chusetts; in New Hampshire, to make obedience to the fugitive-slave law punishable as a crime; in Ohio, to repeal the fugitive-slave law; and squatter sovereignty, in Kansas. In these things there is explosive matter enough to blow up half a dozen national conventions, if it gets into them; and what gets very rife outside of conventions is very likely to find its way into them." And again, to another warm friend in Columbus, Ohio, he wrote in a letter dated July 28, 1859:

"There is another thing our friends are doing which gives me some uneasiness. It is their leaning toward 'popular sovereignty.' There are three substantial objections to this. First, no party can command respect which sustains this year what it opposed last. Secondly, Douglas (who is the most dangerous enemy of liberty, because the most insidious one) would have little support in the North, and, by consequence, no capital to trade on in the South, if it were not for his friends thus magnifying him and his humbug. But lastly, and chiefly, Douglas's popular sovereignty, accepted by the public mind as a just principle, nationalizes slavery, and revives the African slave-trade inevitably. Taking slaves into new Territories, and buying slaves in Africa, are identical things, identical rights or identical wrongs, and the argument which establishes one will establish the other. Try a thousand years for a sound reason why Congress shall not hinder the people of Kansas from having slaves, and when you have found it, it will be an equally good one why Congress should not hinder the people of Georgia from importing slaves from Africa.”

An important election occurred in the State of Ohio in the autumn of 1859, and during the canvass Douglas made two speeches in which, as usual, his pointed attacks were directed against Lincoln by name. Quite

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