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depression of his mouth, and a general malformation of countenance so comically awkward that it never fails to bring down the house.' His enunciation is slow and emphatic, and his voice, though sharp and powerful, at times has a frequent tendency to dwindle into a shrill and unpleasant sound; but as before stated, the peculiar characteristic of his delivery is the remarkable mobility of his features, the frequent contortions of which excite a merriment his words could not produce.”
A third says:
“In perhaps the severest test that could have been applied to any man's temper—his political contest with Senator Douglas in 1858—Mr. Lincoln not only proved himself an able speaker and a good tactician, but demonstrated that it is possible to carry on the fiercest political warfare without once descending to rúde personality and course denunciation. We have it on the authority of a gentleman who followed Abraham Lincoln throughout the whole of that campaign, that, in spite of all the temptations to an opposite course to which he was continuously exposed, no personalities against his opponent, no vituperation or coarseness, ever defiled his lips. His kind and genial nature lifted him above a resort to any such weapons of political warfare, and it was the commonly-expressed regret of fiercer natures that he treated his opponent too courteously and urbanely. Vulgar personalities and vituperation are the last thing that can be truthfully charged against Abraham Lincoln. His heart is too genial, his good sense too strong, and his innate self-respect too predominant to permit him to indulge in them. His nobility of nature—and we may use the term advisedly-has been as manifest throughout his whole career as his temperate habits, his self-reliance, and his mental and intellectual power.”
And a fourth, a distinguished scholar, after listening to a speech delivered at Galesburgh, thus wrote:
“The men are entirely dissimilar. Mr. Douglas is a thick-set, finely-built, courageous man, and has an air of self-confidence that does not a little to inspire his supporters with hope.
Mr. Lincoln is a tall, lank man, awkward, apparently diffident, and when not speaking has neither oness in his countenance nor fire in bis eye.
“ Mr. Lincoln has a rich, silvery voice, enunciates with great distinctness, and has a fine command of language. He commenced by a review of the points Mr. Douglas had made. In this he showed great tact, and his retorts, though gentlemanly, were sharp, and reached to the core the subject in dispute. While he gave but little time to the work of review, we did not feel that any thing was omitted which deserved attention.
"He then proceeded to defend the Republican party. Here he charged Mr. Douglas with doing nothing for freedom; with disregarding the rights and interests of the colored man: and for about forty minutes he spoke with a power that we have seldom heard equalled. There was a grandeur in his thoughts, a comprehensiveness in his arguments, and a binding force in his conclusions, which were perfectly irresistible. The vast throng were silent as death; every eye was fixed upon the speaker,' and all gave him serious attention. He was the tall man eloquent; his countenance glowed with animation, and his eye glistened with an intelligence that made it lustrous. He was no longer awkward and ungainly; but graceful, bold, commanding,
"Mr. Douglas had been quietly smoking up to this time; but here he forgot his cigar and listened with anxious attention. When he rose to reply he appeared excited, distarbed, and his second effort seemed to us vastly inferior to his first. Mr. Lincoln had given him a great task, and Mr. Douglas had not time to answer him, even if he had the ability.”
MR. LINCOLN DEFEATED BY MR. DOUGLAS.
The election-day at length arrived, and although the efforts of Mr. Lincoln resulted in an immense increase of the Republican vote, whatever aspirations he had for personal success were frustrated. A vote of 126,084 was cast for the Republican candidates, 121,940 for the Douglas Democrats, and 5,091 for the Lecompton candidates, but Mr. Douglas was elected United States Senator by the Legislature, in which his supporters had a majority of eight on joint ballot.
Although defeated in the hope of securing Mr. Lincoln as their representative in the United States Senate, the Republicans were not discouraged, and from that time determined that their favorite leader should be rewarded with even more exalted honors.
IS NAMED FOR THE PRESIDENCY-EVIDENCE
OF HIS SKILL AS A RAIL-SPLITTER. He was immediately mentioned prominently for the Presidency, and at a meeting of the Illinois State Republican Convention, where he was present as a spectator, a
veteran Democrat of Macon county brought in and presented to the Convention two old fence-rails, gayly decorated with flags and ribbons, and upon wbich the following words were inscribed :
THE RAIL CANDIDATE
FOR PRESIDENT IN 18 6 0.
Two rails from a lot of 3,000 made in 1830, by
of Macon county.
The event occasioned the most unbounded enthusiasm, and for several minutes the most deafening applause resounded through the building. Mr. Lincoln was vociferously called for, and arising from his seat, modestly acknowledged that he had split rails some thirty years previous in Macon county, and he was informed that those before him were a small portion of the product of his labor with the axe.
The fame of the able advocate of Republican principles induced the members of that party in other States to secure his voice and influence in their behalf, and in the fall of 1859 he made several effective speeches in favor of the cause.
HIS GREAT SPEECH AT THE COOPER INSTI
TUTE, NEW YORK. On the twenty-seventh of February, 1860, he made the following forcible speech at the Cooper Institute, New York, before an immense audience :
“ MR. PRESIDENT AND FELLOW-CITIZENS OF NEW YORK : The facts with which I shall deal this evening are mainly old and familiar; nor is there any thing new in the general use I shall make of them. If there shall be any povelty, it will be in the mode of presenting the facts, and the inferences and observations following that presentation.
" In his speech last autumn, at Columbus, Ohio, as reported in The New York Times, Senator Douglas said:
“Our fathers, when they framed the Government under which we live, understood this question juist as well, and even better than we do now.'
"I fully indorse this and I adopt it as a text for this discourse. I so adopt it because it furnishes a precise and agreed starting point for the discussion between Republicans and that wing of Democracy headed by Senator Douglas. It simply leaves the inquiry : "What was the understanding those fathers had of the questions mentioned ?
“ What is the frame of Government under which we live?
“ The answer must be: The Constitution of the United States. That Constitution consists of the original, framed in 1787 (and under which the present Government first went into operation), and twelve subsequently framed amendments, the first ten of which were framed in 1789.
“Who were our fathers that framed the Constitution ? I suppose the 'thirty-nine' who signed the original instrument may be fairly called our fathers who framed that part of the present Government. It is almost exactly true to say they framed it, and it is altogether true to say they fairly represented the opinion and sentiment of the whole nation at that time. Their names being familiar to nearly all, and accessible to quite all, need not now be repeated.
“I take these thirty-nine,' for the present, as being 'our fathers who framed the Government ander which we live.'
"What is the question which according to the text, those fathers understood just as well, and even better than we do now?
“It is this : Does the proper division of local from federal authority, or any thing in the Constitution, forbid our Federal Government control as to slavery in our Federal Territories ?
"Upon this, Douglas holds the affirmative, and Republicans the negative. This affirmative and denial form an issue; and this issue—this question—is precisely what the text declares our fathers understood better than we.
Let us now inquire whether the 'thirty-nine,' or any of them, ever acted upon this question; and if they did, how they acted apon it—how they expressed that better understanding.
In 1784—three years before the Constitution—the United States then owning the Northwestern Territory, and no otherthe Congress of the Confederation had before them the question of prohibiting slavery in that Territory; and four of the 'thirty-nine' who afterward framed the Constitution were in that Congress, and voted on that question. Of these, Roger Sherman, Thomas Mifflin, and Hugh Williamson voted for the prohibition—thus showing that, in their understanding, no livre dividing local from federal authority, nor any thing else, properly forbade the Federal Government to control as to slavery in federal territory. The other of the four-James McHenryvoted against the prohibition, showing that, for some cause, he thought it improper to vote for it.
“ În 1787, still before the Constitution, but while the Convention was in session framing it, and while the Northwestern Territory still was the only territory owned by the United States --the same question of prohibiting slavery in the territory again came before the Congress of the Confederation ; and three more of the 'thirty-nine' who afterward signed the Constitution, were in that Congress, and voted on the question. They were William Blount, William Few and Abraham Baldwin ; and they all voted for the prohibition-thus showing that, in their understanding, no line dividing local from federal authority, por any thing else, properly forbids the Federal Government to control as to slavery in federal territory. This time the prohibition became a law, being part of what is now well known as the Ordinance of '87.
“ The question of federal control of slavery in the territories, seems not to have been directly before the Convention which framed the original Constitution; and hence it is not recorded that the thirty-nine' or any of them, while engaged on that instrument, expressed any opinion on that precise question.
“In 1789, by the first Congress which sat under the Constitution, an act was passed to enforce the Ordinance of '87 including the prohibition of slavery in the Northwestern Territory. The bill for this act was reported by one of the thirtynine,' Thomas Fitzsimmons, then a member of the House of Representatives from Pennsylvania. It went through all its stages without a word of opposition, and finally passed both. branches without yeas and nays, which is equivalent to an unanimous passage. In this Congress there were sixteen of the
thirty-nine' fathers who framed the original Constitution. They were John Langdon, Nicholas Gilman, Wm. S. Johnson, Roger Sherman, Robert Morris, Thos. Fitzsimmons, William Few, Abraham Baldwin, Rufus King, William Patterson, George Clymer, Richard Bassett, George Read, Pierce Butler, Daniel Carrol, James Madison.
“This shows that, in their understanding, no line dividing local from federal authority, nor any thing in the Constitution, properly forbade Congress to prohibit slavery in the federal territory; else both their fidelity to correct principle, and their oath to support the Constitution, would have constrained them to oppose the prohibition.
“Again, George Washington, another of the thirty-nine,'