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more or less rhetorical efforts, extended Fourth-of-July orations, and of thefulsomely patriotic" and "fife-and-drum" varieties. As Professor Chamberlain well says:
"History has very often been made the mere chronicle and description of kings and their wars; the deeds and achievements of the multitudes of common men and women, who have continued, even inter arma, industriously and successfully to pursue the arts of peace, upon which the evolution and the perpetuity of human civilization primarily depend, being commonly passed over with but scant recognition. This is particularly true when, as is the case in the New World, the story to be told is that of the contact of ethnic stocks, and the subjection and partial extermination of a "lower" by a so-called "higher" race. In recording the history of America, up to the present time, too much attention has been given to the physical conflicts between the white man and the red man, and far too little to the consideration of the peaceful epochs and those cordial relations subsisting not infrequently between the Europeans in different parts of the country and many of the Indian tribes, which have resulted in the former borrowing from the latter numerous minor culture-elements besides others of momentous importance."
This may have been due to the fact that writers have feared that a work not prepared in rhetorical or partisan language would be unacceptable; or because they have felt that it was undesirable and unexpected freely and candidly to set forth the results of extended research; and consequently they have endeavored to subserve what seemed to them. some definite moral purpose by omitting or manipulating facts. We have never yet had a history of this country which deals frankly with all the contemporary evidence and impartially and fully presents the facts of the original records. Our histories have been warped by paternalism, sectionalism, and commercialism; their authors have adopted methods calculated to conceal actual conditions, and allow the readers to learn only such things as the writers suppose to be good for them; methods which appeal to race and class hatred and the spirit of sectionalism; methods which have theories to establish, creeds to defend, and partisan views to gratify.
In adopting a style for the History it was determined to follow the plan of referring to the original evidence by footnote citations. Many works are lacking in this one essential, in that they give but few citations, and those very unimportant, to the source of the information. This, it would appear, impairs the usefulness of a work to any except the scholar. It is urged that footnote citations give an air of learning and heaviness to a work which alarms the general reader, and that these citations interrupt the continuity of thought. It is not required that every statement made should have a footnote authority, for in reading the original sources one acquires ideas and views for which no direct authority can be given. On the other hand the reader is entitled to know not only who are the most important witnesses but also in special cases the exact statement of those witnesses; each chapter should guide the reader to the more import
ant part of the evidence on which it is based, and if there be contradictions among the witnesses, controversies as to facts or to the motives of public characters, or differences of opinion as to measures, these difficulties should be made known. And this cannot be done satisfactorily in a bibliography at the end of a volume, no matter how carefully it may be prepared.
In addition to the source materials there are the so-called secondary authorities -the lives of the statesmen and other public characters, works on various phases of our history, etc.,- which materially add to our knowledge of the times. It is therefore necessary to make footnote references to these for details which space will not allow us to incorporate. For instance, where we can devote but a few pages to the Constitutional Convention of 1787, there are several histories of this convention (of the "secondary "nature) which give the general reader all the detail he would be likely to require, such as Curtis, History of the Constitution (two volumes); and Bancroft, History of the Formation of the Constitution (two volumes). The chief sources are Madison's Journal of the Convention in various editions, Madison's Writings in various editions, Elliot's Debates on the Constitution, and the notes made by members of the Convention; and upon these the chapter in THE UNITED STATES has been based. But works such as those last mentioned and other source materials are not so arranged that the general reader would care to consult them (even if they were accessible) and we have therefore made numerous citations from authoritative secondary works which give carefully digested and well written resumés of these events.
There is no "final and authoritative" account of any single event in our history and possibly never will be, because there are as many interpretations of "facts" as there are historians who attempt to interpret them. When questions are raised we must refer to the original evidence regarding the events, contained in letters, memoirs, public documents, etc. Even these are contradictory, but as they are the only real authority, it is necessary to base our assumptions and inferences upon them and to indicate the discrepancies. For example, the dispute has never been satisfactorily settled as to whether Putnam did or did not command at Bunker Hill, and as to the courage or cowardice of his actions on that eventful day. The same variances are evident in the reports of losses in war, the battle of Long Island, for example. The only authorities for this battle are the reports and defence of Howe, and the written evidence of officers and men who participated in or witnessed the battle, no one of which by itself is complete or absolutely trustworthy. There are also the
criticisms of the conduct of generals by contemporary writers, some of whom were military experts, but the majority of whom were partisans, though all are valuable in enabling us to paint the picture of the event and of the times in their proper perspective. In his official dispatches concerning the battle of Long Island, Howe reported the total American loss at 3,300, while Washington reported a loss of only 1,000. We must, therefore, critically sift and weigh the evidence of " authorities," and examine the causes of so great a discrepancy. We must bear in mind that in Parliament at this time was a brilliant, powerful and resourceful Whig minority, opposing ministerial measures and endeavoring to encompass the defeat of the dominant party. As commander-in-chief of the British forces in America, Howe had suffered a crushing defeat at Boston, thereby jeopardizing the position of the ministry who had sent him to America. Consequently, it may be inferred that when Howe gained a victory over the despised and "cowardly" rebels, he would seek to magnify it in order to save the ministry at home, trusting that, because of the distance separating the continents and the slowness of travel, the true condition of affairs in America would not become known until the political crisis in England had passed. It may also be assumed that he thus grossly exaggerated to save his own reputation as well as that of the ministry.
On the other hand it may be asked: "Did not Washington have similar reasons for minimizing his defeat?" Again let us examine seemingly extraneous evidence and events. When Washington was appointed commander, there was much sectional jealousy between the Virginia and New England members of Congress, and even among officers and soldiers. Now, therefore, considering the proximity of the governing body to the scene of action and that it would have been a matter of only a few hours for that body to ascertain the minutest detail connected with the army; considering that Washington knew he was carefully watched by those who wished to usurp his place; considering again that the defeat in itself was bad enough and that Washington as commander-in-chief was personally accountable for it; considering all these things it may safely be inferred or assumed that only an insane person would so seriously jeopardize his interests as to make incorrect reports, the inaccuracy of which could easily be ascertained, and perverted and distorted to serve the interests of his enemies. But in this case we are not compelled to trust inference or assumption (which in the last analysis are not authority), for we have the various regimental roll-calls after the battle, and through them can determine who were the survivors or who
were killed, wounded, or reported as missing, which ought to be conclusive evidence. Why is it that historians differ so greatly? Massey, Jesse and Adolphus state the loss to have been more than 3,000 and Stedman 2,000 (these are English historians), while of the American historians Lossing says 1,650, Carrington 970, Marshall 1,000, Irving 2,000, Bancroft 800, Sparks 1,000-1200, Field 2,000, etc., but Johnston, in his Campaign of 1776, follows Washington.
If such discrepancies occur in telling the story of actual conditions, can it be considered strange that opinions differ regarding questions of policy, political or economic theories, etc.? Is it wonderful, when they hit so wide of the mark in describing one minor event, that writers fall short of the true conception of what a proper narrative of our development into a world-power should include? This omission of important" side-lights is perceptible in every period. We know of the physical conflicts between the white man and the red man during the colonial period, but of the influence of this contact of ethnic stocks we learn nothing from our general histories. Of the part played by the Navigation and Trade Laws in fomenting a revolutionary spirit and likewise of the dispute over the establishment of an Anglican Episcopal hierarchy, of the bank and currency controversy, and of the writs of assistance prior to the Revolution we hear little or nothing, but we read aplenty of the " Boston Massacre," the "tea party," and Patrick Henry's speeches. The Tory statesmen are arraigned either as ignorantly stupid or wicked and corrupt, while the Whigs are extolled as " angels of light" and as Heaven-sent messengers to save the colonies from the rapacity of a tyrant king. The bitterest opinions. are expressed in reviewing the sectional strifes between North and South, the people of the latter section having so long been denounced as slavedrivers and traders, rebels, assassins of the nation, etc., that the moment the South is mentioned our children have in their mind's eye a slave mart or a master lashing a slave. Most of our histories have so long ignored the South and the great part she has played in our development that few realize the vast influence exerted over the trend of events by her men, her women, and her political theories. They know of the Puritans and Pilgrims, Plymouth Rock, and the Mayflower, but few ever heard of the Discovery, the Godspeed, and the Susan Constant. When studying our history the majority fail to appreciate the relative importance of the two sections in establishing the country, because the words Slavery, Secession, Rebels, have been so indelibly stamped on their minds by partisan histories that all else is obscured. Few remember that Virginia was a colony of eleven plantations with a representative assembly enacting laws.
for the government of the colony, planning for a college, and asserting the rights of British subjects, before the Pilgrims landed at Plymouth. It is not even known, save in rare instances, that the very Pilgrims who came in the Mayflower were searching for Virginia but were driven by storm upon the bleak coasts of New England, and therefore that by accident only was the section then settled.
From most of our histories we gain the impression that during the Civil War the South was fighting for slavery only, but the causes of that strife involved much more than an effort to uphold a system of human servitude. While the most bitter part of the political strife was brought on by the moral aspect of slavery, still to say that the whole struggle centered upon the continuance of slavery or emancipation is far from the truth. Slavery was the proximate occasion for the war, for it focused the attention of the disputants upon the question as to whether the National Government had the right to regulate the domestic affairs of the individual States. The South believed that the Federal Government was simply a compact between separate and sovereign political bodies, that the powers of the Federal Government were held in trust for the States themselves, and that sovereignty therefore was not in the hands of the Federal Government but in the hands of the people who had created these governments, not, however, as a mass, but according to individual States. The South thought that under the Constitution the Federal Government was given only certain specific powers which it did not possess under the Articles of Confederation, and that the Constitution did not conflict with nor the Federal Government supersede the sovereignty of the States. Upon this issue the war was fought and though the North won, nothing was decided, except that the constitutional right to secede was forever destroyed.
Regarding the right to secede there is and probably always will be the same controversy. In discussing this subject, however, it must be remembered that in the Constitution there is no specific grant of power to the National Government to coerce a rebellious State; nor is anything said as to the right of a State to secede. If the Constitution had contained the above provisions, if it had definitely stated that by adopting it the sovereignty of the Nation would be acknowledged, and that no part or parts could sever connection from the rest without the consent of the whole, probably every State in the Union would have rejected it. When the Constitution was adopted fears were expressed by several of the States that their rights were not properly guarded by that instrument, and resolutions with that object in view were adopted by the ratifying conventions. Virginia went so far as to state that" the powers granted under the Con