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Upheld by the virtue and intelligence of the people, our blessed government, essentially moral in its structure, has passed through many trials in peace and in war. But it is not indestructible. Whenever the majority fail to exercise the reason and stern virtue necessary to the conservation of such a moral system, the wreck of their liberty will rebuke their degeneracy, when it may be too late for repentance to expiate the errors of the past or repair their ravages. Wise men feel that a fearful crisis is now before us, which will, more than any other, try the principles of the people and fix the destiny of the constitution.
be preferred for civil office? Whether the principles consecrated by the approved administrations of Washington, Jefferson, Madison and Monroe, shall be upheld or trampled down by perilous innovation? Whether the "American System" shall be sustained and prudently extended, or condemned as mischievous and unconstitutional? And last, "though not least," whether, by sanctioning the unjust means employed to degrade and supersede those now at the head of affairs, an example shall be set which will encourage the indulgence of the worst passions, and render the Presidential election in future the occasion of incessant crimination and commotion, apt to result in the triumph of force, falsehood and vice? or whether, by discountenancing the premature haste and rancorous spirit of the opposition, the people will assert their own dignity, and show that the canvass shall be, as it has heretofore been, an honorable competion in a decorous appeal to the intelligence oi freemen? These vital considerations and many others, minor and consequential, are presented in the pending controversy between Mr. Adams and Gen Jackson; and in the influence which they shall be found to have, it will remain to be seen, whether we shall have a new assurance of the stability of our free institutions, or a plain indication of their tendency to decay and dissolution.
The political doctrines and the principles of policy foreign and domestic, which characterise the general tenor of the administrations which have preceded that of John Quincy Adams, and under the operation of which our government has attained an elevated rank in the opinions and affections of mankind, are hapily exemplified in the unusual degree of prosperity which is daily resulting from the wisdom and prudence with which his administration is giving more extensive developments of their soundness and beneficence. We are at peace with the whole world. Our treasury is ample. We pay no Involved in the issue is safety or peril. It taxes. Our country is steadily progressing in will subject to a test, novel and eventful, improvement, physical and intelluctual. The the value of free suffrage; and will evince whether, in the exercise of the elective franchise, reason or passion-judgment or feeling, shall predominate.
The approaching election of chief magistrate of the Union, is pregnant with either blessings or calamities, which will be extensively felt and long remembered.
government, so far as the President is responsible, is administered as providently and economically as it ever was in the hey-day of republican simplicity. No citizen is oppressed by federal authority; and we only feel the general government in the blessings which it confers.
In the decision of this important issue, the people are called on to determine, not merely what individual shall fill the Executive chair; this is personal and comparatively immateri- Since his induction, Mr. Adams has done al. But they must incidentally decide other nothing, in which he is not sustained by the and more momentous questions-such as example or opinion of all his predecessors and these whether the President shall be an able by the authority of the people who continued and experienced statesman, well-tried-or a to ratify and approve for thirty-six years, lucky and blazoned warrior, self-willed and measures which, when attempted by him, are impetuous, and inexperienced in the practice denounced by Jackson politicians as daring or duties of the office? Whether the first civ- usurpations. For desiring the extension of the il station in the world shall be conferred for Cumberland Road through the western states, the benefit of those who gave it, or for the grat- he has been abused for encroachment on state ification of him who asks it? Whether, if it rights. For favoring the protection, to a prushall be bestowed as the reward of service, it dent and necessary extent, of our domestic inshall be a just tribute to the distinguished Ci- dustry, agricultural and manufacturing, he vilian, or the pension of the valiant Soldier? has been charged with a wanton violation of Whether civil or military pretensions should the constitution. For treating our South
American neighbors respectfully, he has incur- appointed ambition, have been deluded almost red the imputation of a design to unite our to fanaticism; and seem to suppose that their destinies with theirs. For being willing, with liberty is in danger, unless by exalting the the majority of the Commissioners at Ghent, idol of military enthusiasm, the administrato continue in force the article of the treaty of tion can be revolutionized. The malcontents '83, in relation to the Mississippi, the people are invited to the standard of a venerated and have been told that he attempted to sell the laurelled soldier, valiant and glorious, but in navigation of that great river. When the op- every other respect totally unfit for the cabinet. position frustrated the colonial negotiation by --a soldier, the accidents of whose eventful life, espousing the side of England, they endeav- public and private, manifest the unreasonableored to make the responsibility of the failure ness of his claims to the civil eminence, to recoil on him and his cabinet. All his acts which, unfortunately, for the peace of the counare misrepresented; his meaning perverted; his try and for his own posthumous fame, he now motives questioned; his language distorted, aspires. and himself falsely charged with prodigality and corruption. Many are made uneasy with visions of chimerical danger-and the American people, more highly favored than at any former period, are divided into two anomalous parties, in which all ancient badges and feeling, are buried in the all absorbing question— shall Andrew Jackson and his partizans be elevated to supreme power on the ruins of Mr Adams and Mr. Clay? So acrimonious are many of the complainants, that they employ all the resources of opprobious epithets and vulgar defamation. Such rudeness and injustice to such men, are not only inconsistent with the personal respect due to them as gentlemen, but with the forbearance which their stations should exact; and are ominous, if ap proved, of the degradation of exalted worth, and of official diguity. "If such things are done in the green tree," what may we not expect "in the dry?', The persecutors of either of these honest men, may be earnestly asked, "what evil hath he done you?" The answer must be, like that of Aristides on a similar occasion, "thou art just."
It is not because he is well qualified, that his leading adherents prefer Gen. Jackson to Mr. Adams, but because he is the only individual of their party who has any chance to suc ceed. His civil qualifications are not only greatly inferior to those of Mr Adams, but certainly very unequal to those of many of his own party. But it was not the fortune of any of the latter to command at Orleans; the acciden tal circumstance of doing which, is the sum total of the General's recommendations.Without this event no human being would ever have thought of electing him to the Executive Chair of the U. States.
This his partizans know. But they know too the spell of a military name on the popular affections-and that it covers a multitude of glaring defects: and hence they use the battle of Orleans alone, as the talisman for effecting their contemplated revolution. The 8th of January, the anniversary of Kentucky's disgrace, is therefore vociferated as if it entitled the renowned Hero to everything. If Andrew Jackson has any other than martial claims to the office which he anxiously seeks, let his friends present them. There has been no attempt to recommend him by an address to the understanding. Every effort in his favor has been directed to the passions. This alone is an admission of the insufficiency of his civil pretensions, and, with rational men, should be decisive.
Before Mr. Adams had taken the oath of of fice, a party, formidable for number and accidental influence, composed of disaffected and disappointed men of discordant feelings and principles, was organized for the avowed purpose of prostrating him and Mr. Clay, and denouncing their conduct, whatever it should be, "right or wrong." They adopted the ap- He has admitted his own unfitness. Not propriate watch-words-"They must be put only does his civil history show that he never down if they are as pure as the angels at the rose above the grade of mediocrity, but he has right hand of God;" and true to their pur- magnanimously acknowledged his want of pose, they have left no means untried for qualifications for a seat in Congress, or on the effecting their unworthy design. Judged by judgment Bench—and is he who is unequal to their acts, it would seem that their first max- the duties of these comparatively humble plaim is, "the end justifies the means." They ces, competent to guide the affairs of a whole had learned from history, sacred and profane, nation? If it be intended that he shall be onthat, during transient paroxysms of popular ly the nominal President, we say the pension excitement, the multitude, roused to phrenzy is too high, and the hazard too great. by the arts of the designing, had proscribed The most memorable act of the General's potheir benefactors and most virtuous men. litical life, is the vote which stands against And boldly experimenting on the credulity him on the country's record, in opposition to and presumed aptitude of the body of the an expression of approbation by Congress, people to believe indefinite charges of delin- of the public life of the Father of his Country, quency against men high in office, "the Com- when on the eve of retiring forever from the bination" have endeavored to excite public public service. Washington had enemies, and indignation against Mr. Adams, and the Se- his administration too met with opposition cretary of State of the United States, by and reproach. charges as false as they are foul. By a dex- The same spirit is yet alive, and instigates terous use of these, many honest men, unac- the violent outcry against the present adminquainted with the artifice and resource of dis-istration. Nothing but the name of Washing
ington saved him from overthrow: may his example save those who, for following his precepts, are subjected to the same persecution which he outlived.
The claims of the Hero of Orleans to civil preferment are certainly not increased by this inexplicable vote; nor by the contemptuous terms in which he ridiculed Mr. Madison's pretensions to the presidency; nor by his threat to chastise a Senator in the Capitol, for enquiring into his public conduct; nor by the injury which he recklessly endeavored to inflict on the State of Kentucky, by unjustly charging her volunteer soldiers with "inglorious flight" at Orleans, and by refusing to do justice when convicted of injustice; nor by the indelicate manner, in which in his Harrodsburgh letter he meant to speak of Mr. Adams as the enemy of the people, and of himself as their friend and candidate; nor by his artful efforts to destroy the reputations of Mr. Adams and Mr. Clay, by insinuating that he could convict them of "bargain and management," when his own boasted witness acquits them, and proves that, if there was any tampering, it was on the General's side.
Next to the 8th of January, with which some declaim very handsomely who were opposed to the war, the friends of the General have prof ited most by asserting, that he was the People's President, and that he and they were corruptly cheated out of their rights. This has been so often and confidently reiterated that many honest men believe it, and for this reason alone, incline to espouse his cause.
only 84-when, if the will of the people had been consulted Mr. Adam's vote must have been at least 93, and that of his competitor not more than 85. It is not denied, that Mr. Crawford's friends preferred Mr. Adams to the General, and there is do doubt, that a majority of Mr Clay's felt the same preference.Hence it is evident, that Mr Adams was preferred to Gen. Jackson by an overwhelming majority of the American people, and was, therefore, the people's candidate,
Equally fallacious, but far less excusable, is the plea of "bargain" in the election by the House of Representatives. This is a second "Popish Plot"-and its informer, whoever he may be, a second Titus Oates, and should meet with execration in common with those who concocted a plot so diabolical. They have the hardihood to ask honorable men to accredit the imputed corruption of distinguished citizens who have been their country's pride for many years, and to degrade them, not only without proof, but against the proof of the accuser. Gen. Jackson well knew that Mr. Clay could neither be bribed nor awed to vote for him-and he also knew that, if he could be guilty of such a suicidal act as to give in his adhesion to him, he could not have elected him. The General with Mr. Clay's assistance could not have obtained more than nine states, and Mr. Adams on the final ballot must have had at least 15. Therefore, there was nothing to be gained by bargain, and no motive to enter into it. Mr. Clay did not desire the place of Secretary; but neither his friends nor his enemies allowed him to refuse
That he was not the object of a majority of the people's preference, plain facts will indis-it. Unable to induce Mr. Clay to enlist under putably prove to all who have eyes to see or the military banner, the disappointed are proears to hear, and the faculty of addition and voked to attempt by calumny to put him out of subtraction; and this must have been well un- their way. They cannot succeed until they derstood by those who gave the first impulse to put him down; and it is plain, that the prime this wide spread delusion. The Gen. was not object of their warfare is to prostrate him. If only not chosen by a majority of the people, he had not become Secretary of State, there but, as is evident, Mr. Adams received a large would either have been no combination, or if plurality of votes given by the people, and any, it would have been of a character very would have gone into the House of Represen- different from the Jackson party. The Gentatives with a correspondent plurality of the eral was brought out first as a candidate for electoral votes, had the majority of the people the purpose of frustrating Mr. Clay's prospects of each state controlled the whole electoral and of electing Mr. Adams, who was the Genvote of the State, and had not Mr. Adams been eral's first choice until he had hopes for himthe victim of "intrigue, bargain and manage-self, and afterwards his second choice. And ment. Of the free votes represented in the electoral colleges, Mr. Adams had about 4,000,000, and Gen Jackson had only about 2,000,000. By the constitution the slave states are entitled to the electoral weight of 3-5th of their The west is obviously and peculiarly interslaves who do not vote: add these, and still Mr. ested in sustaining this administration. Do Adams has a decided majority over the Gener- we desire the continuation of the Cumberland al's number, of bond and free, black and white. Road, commenced under the auspices of JefBut in some States where Mr. Adams had a ma-ferson, and the opening of the Chesapeake and jority of the whole popular vote, the General Ohio Canal, projected by the benevolent mind obtained a majority of the electors. This re- of Washington? And do we wish to particisulted from the organization of the districts.-pate in the incalculable blessings, political, And in some other states where Mr. Adams commercial and fiscal, which these great imwas stronger than any other candidate, the provements would produce? Do we feel the friends of the others combined on the General, necessity of protection to domestic manufacsupposing there was no danger of his election. tures and to our agriculture? The opposition Thus this candidate of the people received, denounce the present administration for favournominally, 99 electoral votes and Mr. Adams ing these measures: and General Jackson has
now he and Mr. Clay are hunted down, by a party whose motto is, "Jackson and Reform," or proscription and expulsion of all who will not enlist in their service.
that Gen Jackson would wish to destroy the liberty of his country-nor that, if he should the people are yet prepared for such a catastrophe. But we would deplore the example, as well as fear many of the consequences immediate and remote, of his election to the Presidency; and deem it wise to profit by the histotory of the world, and avoid the rock on which the liberty of past generations has been
not found it convenient to disclose his opinion of the "American System." He conceals it, and suffers himself to be declared in favor of the system where it is popular, and against it where it is not acceptable. Let him come out upon this subject explicitly, and his hopes of election will be blasted. If he is friendly to the system, nothing can be gained by preferring him to an abler and surer friend. But if, as almost certain, he is hostile to it, wrecked. what may not its friends, and its enemies too, Wherefore, Resolved,--1st. That it is the lose by his success? It is earnestly to be de-duty of the friends of order and good governsired, that the people may consider this sub-ment, to employ all practicable and honourable ject dispassionately, and act wisely and prudently, regarding measures, not men. In electing Gen. Jackson there is great peril-but in re-electing Mr. Adams there is safety. He is unexceptionably moral; he is a plain and temperate republican; he is fully competent; he is the man of whom Washington said in 1797, that he was the most useful functionary in the foreign service; the man who enjoyed signal evidences of the confidence of every President of the United States, and of the admiration of General Jackson until it became his interest to crush him.
By approving the conduct of this gifted and much wronged citizen, the people will do justice to him and to themselves, and will rescue the country from the consequences of electing a General, with the transient apprehension of whose success Mr. Jefferson, Mr. Madison, and other patriarchs, trembled for the safety of the Republic.
It is respectfully submitted to the patriotic and considerate among those who disapprove the leading measures of Mr. Adams' administration, whether they reasonably expect any advantage, by electing General Jackson, equal to the permanent injury which such an event may inflict.
Military renown has been fatal to liberty. It overran the freedom of Greece-of Rome-and of every other republic that has ever suffered itself to be spell bound by its fascina
Bonaparte and Cæsar won more battles than General Jackson ever achieved, and were certainly his superiors in general knowledge.But what free people would be willing to confide their destinies to such rulers?
means to promote the re-election of John Q. Adams; that we approve, as preparatory to this end, the convention proposed to be held at Frankfort, on the 17th of Dec. next, to select an electoral ticket, favourable to the present administration, and that Francis P. Hord, Daniel Obannon, Tyre Harris, Thomas Kennedy, Benjamin Mason, Simeon H. Anderson and Alander Sneed, be appointed Delegates to represent us in that convention.
SPEECH AT CLAY FESTIVAL.
As the organ of the neighbors of our distinguished countryman and guest, to whom they have dedicated this Kentucky Festival as a tribute of their respect for him as a man and of their gratitude for the eminent services of his long and eventful public life, I now propose a crowning sentiment, which, as we believe, will be echoed by the united head and heart of this vast multitude, of both sexes, and of all ages and denominations.
We have assembled, my countrymen, not to worship an installed idol, nor to propitiate patronage by pouring the incense of flattery at the feet of official power, but to greet, with heart and hand, an old patriot returned to the walks of private life with a consciousness of having, through all the vicissitudes of inconstant fortune, always endeavored to do his whole duty to his whole country, and with the memory also of deeds of which the proudest on earth might well be proud. [Cheers.]
By the good and wise of all parties, who feel as they should ever feel, such an occasion Washington was "a military chief"-But as this must be approved as the offspring of there has been only one Washington. The emotions which should be cherished by evename of our dead Washington is worth more ry enlightened friend of his country's into us, than all the living Washingtons in the stitutions, and by every disinterested admirer world. He was not only "first in war" but of the noble of his species. We should honor "first in peace and first in the hearts of his those who honor us. Distinguished services, countrymen." It was not his victories in the by whomsoever rendered, should be gratefully field, but his victory over himself, that lifted remembered, and exalted talents are entitled Washington above all other men. He was to universal respect. But, when one of our honored with the Chief Magistracy not for own countrymen, by the force of his own ge being a successful warrior, but for possessing nius and virtues, has risen from poverty and those pre-eminent moral excellencies, the known destitution of which is an insuperable objection to the Hero of New Orleans
obscurity, and not only ennobled his own name but illustrated that of his country, no personal jealousy or political prejudice should We delight to confer appropriate honor on chill the homage of that country's undivided our distinguished Hero. But we should over- heart. And when, as now, we behold him, leap the boundary of gratitude and prudence, a plain citizen, grown grey in the public serby making him President. We do not believe vice, and retired to his farm to live and die
among us, what Republican, what Kentuckian, can rebuke the sympathy and respect here this day manifested towards him, in a manner unexampled, and far more grateful to his heart than the offer of the highest official station on earth? On such a day and at such a place, all, of every rank and name, might honorably unite in this common offering of cordial respect for a fellow citizen whom, perhaps, we shall never again see and hear as we now see and shall hear him, and who honors us as much as he can be honored by us. To the thousands here present the scene around us is peculiarly imposing, and suggests reflections both encouraging and ennobling.
for the repose of retirement, the verdant lawns, the roving herds, and domestic sweets of Ashland-when, for the last time, he stood before the Senate, to make the solemn announcement, and take his everlasting leave,-not an eye was dry-not a heart unmoved; and let his political opponents say what they may, that parting scene was felt there, and here, and every where, as the separation of the soul from the body. [Great cheering.]
The measure of his fame is now full-and ripens for posterity.
Thus, while the infant Kentucky has grown to a great and renowned State, and the small village of Lexington to a beautiful and classic city, their adopted son has also risen to an eminence in the judgment and esteem of enlightened men, which few on earth have yet attained, or can ever hope to reach; and now, surviving almost all of those who witnessed his humble advent, he reposes, in health or body and health of mind, on the blooming honors of a political patriarch. And here we may all behold a striking and beautiful exemplification of the hopeful tendencies of our free and equal institutions, and of the inestimable value also of talents faithfully employed and rightly directed.
Resisting the syren voice of vulgar ambition, Kentucky's adopted son faithfully served his country for that country's sake; and now, after steering the constitution from the whirlpool of consolidation on the one side, and dissolution on the other, the Ulysses of America has laid aside his heavy armor, and come home with an untarnished shield. He wants no Homer to exaggerate or embalm his deedsAlready stereotyped, they will tell, in all time, for themselves, without the aid of poetry or of song.
Not more than half a century has elapsed since the Indian, with his tomahawk, lurked in the cane-brakes of our pioneer fathers. With in rather less than that eventful period, a beardless stranger was, for the first time, seen on the streets of the then little village of Lexington. Like Franklin when he first visited Philadelphia, a poor and friendless orphan boy had left his native Virginia and come forlorn to this land of promise, to seek his fortune and fix his destiny. He leaned alone on Providence, a widowed mother's prayers, and the untutored talents with which God had been pleased to bless him. Those prayers prevailed-and that Providence and those talents sustained him in all his trials, and soon pointed him to a high and bright career, which none but the good and great can ever run with honor or success. That career he has, so far, run with a lustre unsurpassed. The Forum and the Senate have beer, adorned and exalted by the graceful displays of his rare genius, and the overwhelming power of his Demosthenian eloquence. His name is identified with the forensic, political, and diplomatic history of the United States for the His public life illustrates the difference belast thirty-six years; and his mark is legible tween the statesman and the politician-beon every important act of national legislation |tween the enlightened patriot who goes for or American policy, which has been either the welfare and honor of his country, in defiadopted or discussed in this Union, within ance of all considerations of personal ease or that period. He has always been the friend aggrandizement, and the selfish demagogue, of the honest laborer-the champion of domes-who, always feeling the people's pulse or looktic industry, and a sound currency-the ad-ing at the weathercock of the popular breath, vocate of equal rights-and the defender of counts, as the chief good on earth, his own the constitution, which, though excellent as it exaltation, by any means, to some office or is, might, in his judgment, still be improved trust; which he is not qualified to fill with by the prudent modifications of experience. honor to himself, or advantage to the public. His voice has been heard and his thunders Whilst a swarming tribe of selfish placemen, felt, in the cause of civil and religious liberty, and vulgar aspirants after ephemeral popularin every clime. And always and everywhere, ity, like common birds, have been skimming the Kentuckian has been distinguished for the earth and amusing the people with their lofty and comprehensive patriotism, republi- versatility, their colored plumage, and their can simplicity, practical wisdom, and self- mock notes the orphan boy of Lexington-the sacrificing independence. The whole reading self-made man of America, poised on eagle's world knows and admires him as the Ameri-pinions, has soared to the pure sky, with his can statesman and orator, whose moral power eyes fixed on the sun-until fatigued at last, and self-devoting patriotism, more than once, saved his country from impending ruin. And when, like Washington, he determined to retire forever from the theatre of public action where he had won so many civic victories for his country, and plucked so many green laurels for his own head-when he resolved to exchange the toils and troubles of public life,
by his airy height, he has rested on the uplifted arm of that great commonwealth, which is emphatically styled "the land of the free and the home of the brave." And there, on that strong right arm, let him rest in peace, until, if ever, he may choose, once more, to try his strength in the loftier and less peaceful scenes of political life.