Page images
PDF
EPUB

thinking it wrong, as we do, can we yield to them? Can we cast our votes with their view, and against our own ? In view of our moral, social, and political responsibilities, can we do this

“Wrong as we think slavery is, we can yet afford to let it alone where it is, because that much is due to the necessity arising from its actual presence in the nation ; but can we, while our votes will prevent it, allow it to spread into the National Territories, and to overrun us here in these Free States ?

“ If our sense of duty forbids this, then let us stand by our duty, fearlessly and effectively. Let us be diverted by none of those sophistical contrivances wherewith we are so industriously plied and belabored-contrivances such as groping for some middle ground between the right and the wrong, vain as the search for a man who should be neither a living man nor a dead man—such as a policy of 'don't care' on a question about which all true men do care-such as Union appeals beseeching true Union men to yield to Disunionists, reversing the divine rule, and calling, not the sinners, but the righteous to repentance—such as invocations to Washington, imploring men to unsay what Washington said, and undo what Washington did.

Neitherlet us be slandered from our duty by false accusations against us, not frightened from it by menaces of destruction to the Government, nor of dungeons to ourselves. Let us have faith that right makes might, and in that faith, let us, to the end, dare to do our duty, as we understand it.”

IS NOMINATED FOR PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES BY THE REPUBLICAN CONVENTION.

On the sixteenth of May, 1860, the Republican National Convention assembled in Chicago, for the purpose of nominating candidates for the Presidency and Vice-Presidency. The first day was spent in organizing, and the second, in adopting rules for the government of the Convention and the platform of the party, and on the third, the body proceeded to ballot for the two candidates. Mr. Lincoln was nominated for President by Mr. Judd, of Illinois, and on the first ballot, received 102 votes, Mr. Seward receiving, on the same ballot, 1731 votes, and the balance being divided between the other candidates. On the second ballot, the vote stood : Lincoln, 181; Seward, 1841; and on the third, Mr. Lincoln received 230 votes, or within one and one-half of a nomination. One of the delegates then changed four votes of his State, giving them to Mr. Lincoln, thus nominating him, and then, amid a scene of the most intense excitement, vote after vote was changed to the successful candidate, until at length the nomination was made unanimous. The selection was received by the Republican voters of the country with the most unbounded enthusiasm, and immediate preparations were made for an arduous campaign. The antecedents of their standard-bearer were of such an honorable and noble character, that they felt convinced the different factions among the opposition-indeed, all who were inspired more by patriotism than party predilections—would support him in the canvass and at the ballot-box. The architect of his own fortunes, he had raised himself from obscurity to eminence and distinction. Born in a floorless log-cabin, in a Kentucky wilderness; the child of humble and uneducated, but Christian parents; and with no education save that received during six months tuition in an unpretending school-house, and from attentive study at home by the light of a log fire, Abraham Lincoln, by his indefatigable perseverance and energy, rapidly rose from one position of trust and responsibility to another, until he attained the nomination of a great political party for the highest office in the gift of the American people.

IS NOTIFIED OF HIS NOMINATION-THE

ADDRESSES ON THE OCCASION,

The committee appointed by the Convention to notify Mr. Lincoln of his nomination, performed their duty without delay, and upon arriving at his residence in Springfield, whither they were escorted by an immense concourse of citizens, the President of the Convention addressed the nominee as follows:

SPEECH OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE CON

VENTION.

“I have, sir, the honor, in behalf of the gentlemen who are present, a Committee appointed by the Republican Convention, recently assembled at Chicago, to discharge a most pleasant duty. We have come, sir, under a vote of instructions to that Committee, to notify you that you have been selected by the Convention of the Republicans at Chicago, for President of the United States. They instruct us, sir, to notify you of that selection, and that Committee deem it not only respectful to yourself, but appropriate to the important matter which they have in hand, that they should come in person, and present to you the authentic evidence of the action of that Convention ; and, sir, without any phrase which shall either be considered personally plauditory to yourself, or which shall have any reference to the principles involved in the questions which are connected with your nomination, I desire to present to you the letter which has been prepared, and which informs you of the nomination, and with it the platform, resolutions and sentiments, which the Convention adopted. Sir, at your convenience, we shall be glad to receive from you such a response as it may be your pleasure to give us."

REPLY OF MR. LINCOLN. In response, Mr. Lincoln said:

Mr. Chairman and Gentlemen of the Committee: I tender to you, and through you to the Republican National Convention, and all the people represented in it, my profoundest thanks for the high honor done me, which you now formally announce. Deeply, and even painfully sensible of the great responsibility which is inseparable from this high honor--a responsibility which I could almost wish had fallen upon some one of the far more eminent men and experienced statesmen whose distinguished names were before the Convention, I shall, by your leave, consider more fully the resolutions of the Convention, denominated the platform, and without unnecessary or unrea. sonable delay, respond to you, Mr. Chairman, in writing, not doubting that the platform will be found satisfactory, and the nomination gratefully accepted. And now I will not longer defer the pleasure of taking you, and each of you, by the hand.”

CORRESPONDENCE BETWEEN THE CONVEN

TION AND MR. LINCOLN.

The following letter was addressed to Mr. Lincoln by the President of the Convention, and a committee appointed for that purpose :

CHICAGO, May 18th, 1860. “ TO TUE Hon. ABRAHAM LINCOLN, OF ILLINOIS.

Sir: The representatives of the Republican party of the United States, assembled in Convention at Chicago, have this day by a unanimous vote, selected you as the Republican candidate for the office of President of the United States to be supported at the next election; and the undersigned were appointed a Committee of the Convention to apprise you of this nomination, and respectfully to request that you will accept it. A declaration of the principles and sentiments adopted by the Convention accompanies this communication.

In the performance of this agreeable duty we take leave to add our confident assurance that the nomination of the Chicago Convention will be ratified by the suffrages of the people.

“ We have the honor to be, with great respect and regard, your friends and fellow-citizens."

On the 23d, Mr. Lincoln addressed the following letter to the President of the Convention :

“SPRINGFIELD, ILLINOIS, May 23rd, 1860. * Hon. GEORGE Ashman, President of the Republican National

Convention. “Sir: I accept the nomination tendered me by the Convention over which you presided, and of which I am formally ap. prised in the letter of yourself and others, acting as a Commit. tee of the Convention for that purpose.

“ The declaration of principles and sentiments, which accompanies your letter, meets my approval ; and it shall be my care not to violate, or disregard it, in any part.

Imploring the assistance of Divine Providence, and with due regard to the views and feelings of all who were represented in the Convention ; to the rights of all the States and Territories, and people of the nation ; to the inviolability of the Constitution, and the perpetual union, harmony and prosperity of all, I am most happy to co-operate for the practical success of whe principles declared by the Convention, “Your obliged friend and fellow-citizen,

“ ABRAHAM LINCOLN."

On the sixth of November, 1860, the election for President took place, with the following result: Mr. Lincoln received 491,275 over Mr. Douglas; 1,018,499 over Mr. Breckenridge, and 1,275,821 over Mr. Bell ; and the vote was subsequently proclaimed by Congress to be as follows:

For Abraham Lincoln, of Illinois.....
For John C. Breckenridge, of Kentucky.
For John Bell, of Tennessee..
For Stephen A. Douglas, of Illinois...

180 72 39 12

[ocr errors]

To describe the various movements and projects which were devised and consummated in the South between the time that Mr. Lincoln was elected and the date of his inauguration, would require a much larger work than that which we now offer to the public, and we will therefore confine our account merely to those which it is unavoidably necessary to mention. The principal and most diabolical plot conceived and recommended by the traitors, was to prevent the inauguration by obtaining possession of the Federal Capital, or by assassinating Mr. Lincoln while on his way thither, or upon the day that the ceremonies were to take place. Whatever may have been the plan, or however large the reward offered to the villain who would accomplish the murderous deed, the object of their vindictiveness escaped their machinations, and still continues to administer the government wisely and faithfully.

LEAVES SPRINGFIELD FOR WASHINGTON

OVATIONS ON THE ROUTE.

The President Elect left his home in Springfield, Illinois, on the eleventh of February, 1861, for Washington, having before leaving the depot addressed the following words of farewell to the thousands of his fellow-citizens who had assembled at the place of departure :

My friends : No one not in my position can appreciate the sadness I feel at this parting. To this people I owe all that I

Here I have lived more than a quarter of a century. Here my children were born, and here one of them lies buried. I know not how soon I shall see you again. A duty devolves

am. .

« PreviousContinue »