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announce that "their connexion with the North was a standing insurrection in the South! But the greatest danger which ever threatened the Union, was the election of Lincoln, who, like the Hon. Wm. H. Seward in his "Bloody Rochester Speech," so called, had made himself particularly obnoxious and offensive in an address which he delivered at Springfield, Illinois, June 12th, 1858.
In this address Lincoln said, "If we could first know where we are, and whither we are tending, we could better judge what to do, and how to do it. We are now far into the 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 will arrest the farther 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 till it shall become alike lawful in all the States, old as well
as new, North as well as South" This speech was interpreted by the Southerners to mean, "a war of
sections." Mr Lincoln being a representative man, and claiming to be the standard bearer of the Republican party, lead them to accept it as a standing menace, and to adopt for their motto, "no submission to abolition rule." Lincoln took the alarm, for when charged by the late Judge Douglas, August 21, 1858, at Ottawa, Illinois, with the utterance of the sentiments contained in the above speech, he replied, as recorded on page 77 of his Campaign Book, "When I made my speech at Springfield, of which the Judge complains, and from which he quotes, I really was not thinking of the things he ascribes to me at all, I had no thought in the world that I was doing anything to bring about a war between the free and slave states. I had no thought in the world that I was doing anything to bring about a political and social equality of the black and white races. It never occurred to me that I was doing anything, or favouring anything, to reduce to a dead uniformity all the local institutions of the various states. But I must say in all fairness to him, if he thinks I am doing something which leads to these bad results, it is none the better I did not mean it. It is just as fatal to the country, if I have any influence in producing it, whether I intend it or not! The States also which had passed personal Liberty Bills, took alarm, and with dreadful haste, in which Rhode Island led the way, erased the " obnoxious statutes," so called, from the statute book in connexion with the State legislatures! In the general consternation and alarm which prevailed for, the
safety of the Union, the churches, city corporations, and chambers of commerce, united to send their delegates to a Peace Congress which was called at Washington, where Wm. E. Dodge, Esq. of New York, (a flaming revivalist), with other delegates, by joint resolution, decreed to offer the slave states all territory south of 36° 30' for new slave states, if they would come back into the Union, bury the war hatchet, and smoke the pipe of peace? And to bring up the rear of the panic-stricken, the government took the alarm, sent for the late Judge Douglas to seek his interposition and advice, whilst at the same time the Secretary of State, the Hon. Wm. H. Seward, telegraphed to the Boards of Trade in Chicago and Milwaukie, conveying the startling announcement, "That heretofore the cry of Union has been raised when there was no danger. The question of slavery will not now be taken into account. We are to save the Union, and then save all that is worth saving." Our Northern people had often performed their antics before the Southerns, and prostrated themselves to pick up the nuts they threw down, in the shape of commercial tariffs-but at this fearful and rugged crisis of our history-they performed their antics without the nuts, the Southerns, having withdrawn from the Union menagerie, left them to find their own nuts to crack! All the energies of what are called mighty spirits amongst Northern Democrats, and the resources of their "great intellects were brought to bear on Southern representatives, but in vain. The South
had taken its stand for weal or for woe, and in the bloody contest which has followed, it has displayed an energy and skill which has won for its generals and armies the admiration of the world, and since there is more hope of the emancipation of the slave in the separation of the South from the North, than in their re-union-and also of the amelioration of his condition, who that is not blind to the signs of the times, can desire success to the Federal arms? The truth is self-evident, that if the Union had not given slavery a new lease of its life, in the barricades which it interposed for its preservation in the Fugitive Slave Law, Slavery would have been well nigh extinguished without the shedding of blood, or the interruption of commerce, for the same law which operated to send the slaves from the Northern States into Canada, when slave States, and caused their masters to make what they could out of their nimble "chattels personal," would have had the same effect in the South, but for the vile subserviency of our Northern people, who placed themselves under the Union yoke to obey the powers that be, to hunt up the fugitive, and stand between him and his deliverance-thus making them a proverb and a reproach-a taunt and a curse to society and the world! And as it was never in the power of the South to preserve slavery, or extend it of itself, how imbecile and foolish it is to make slavery a stalking horse for the subjugation of the South? Even John Bright has confessed "that but for the secession of the South, nothing but a
miracle could have hastened the destruction of slavery." If, therefore, our Northern people, or the Pro-Federals in this country, had any regard for freedom, they would have said, "wayward sisters, depart in peace." And there was nothing to have prevented such an arrangement in our Partnership Concern, since, to use the language of the Rev. Dr Guthrie, "there is no Union or partnership which may not be dissolved without crime, but marriage." Such a course would have saved rivers of blood, and prevented an awful waste of property, which, will yield a heavy crop of heart-burnings; and, also, an accumulation of debt which will ere long send us with a thundering crash into the gulph of financial ruin. Besides, if there had been a particle of that sacred thing called honour, amongst the Northern partners of the Union, they would have withdrawn, or have dissolved partnership; but, alas, honour, which is said to be known and practised amongst thieves, was not to, be found amongst our so-called enlightened statesmen and sagacious wise men! How much to be deprecated is the course which our Northern people and government have adopted. In their hands. what a terrible scourge war has become both to themselves and the South, and to Europe. Who shall bridge the yawning chasm which their resentment has created, or heal the wounds which their war passions have produced!
"Sic transit gloria mundi."
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